Gaijin Smash

Innocence and Waste

Posted in Blog by gaijinsmashnet on December 11, 2007

I noticed in a lot of the comments (yes, I read everything…) that many of you are concerned about my girlfriend finding out about my plans prematurely. Either she will stumble upon them, or she already knows and is just pretending that she doesn’t. Let me assure you, that is not a problem.
Yes, I have written my plans here on a public blog for all to see, but the catch is that it’s in English. My girlfriend doesn’t understand English. Well, she understands enough to properly smack me if she’s within earshot when I say “Man, look at the tits on that girl!”, but other than that, she just doesn’t speak English. “Well, she’d understand proposal”. You might say. You might be right. But you have to remember, she’d have to actively point her browser in the direction of Gaijin Smash, in order to read her boyfriend’s blog in a language she can’t understand. Sure, she could do that, but as long at the paparazzi are taking candid pics of Jennifer Love Hewitt and Paris Hilton, as long as Britney Spears and Linday Lohan keep fucking up in the public eye…well…let’s just say my girlfriend’s time on the internet will be otherwise preoccupied.
Internet aside, she just has no clue. This is something you’ll have to trust me on. Perhaps other people would have gotten the hint, but she hasn’t. Case in point: when I came back from the secret meeting with her mother, I also had a bag of donuts and a fuckton of Mandarin oranges with me (literally a fuckton: 1.2 on the fucktonnage scale). Why is this relevant?


Her Mom works next to a donut shop called Mister Donut (sounds like something out of The Simpsons, doesn’t it?). After work, she’ll often just pop into the shop and buy 2 fucktons of donuts. Often when we go to the Mom’s house, she’ll have some Mister Donut donuts, and she’ll give half or all of them to us to take home. The oranges…I dunno how the Mom came to have so many oranges, but she did. Girlfriend had gone earlier in the week and Mom had given her oranges to bring back. And after the secret meeting, I too received oranges.
So now, I’m coming home with donuts and oranges. Dead giveaway, right? You’d think so…
Her: Welcome back. …What’cha got there?
Me: Oh, these? Just some donuts. …Um, was kinda hungry after work, just grabbed a few on the way home.
Her: Ah, okay.
Me: You want one?
Her: Sure, thanks! And hey, what’s that?
Me: Oh, um…oranges.
Her: Wow, that’s sure a lot! Did you get them from someone at work?
Me: …Work! Yes! That’s right, I got them from one of the Chinese ladies at work. She brought a bunch in.
Her: I got a bunch from my mom too. Now we’ve got a lot of oranges!
Me: We sure do.
Her: You should write a thank-you note to the lady at work.
Me: I’ll…uh…get right on that.
Now, I know many of you are thinking “c’mon, she knows man! She was just playing along!” No no, she doesn’t know. Trust me, I just know – she hasn’t got a clue. I told her I got the oranges from a lady at work…and that’s honestly just what she believes. You may think this to be cluelessness, but I see it as an unspoiled form of innocence, the kind that only children usually have.
Y’see, we adults, we’re too tainted and jaded by the world. We doubt what we’re told because experience has told us to. A good deal of the time, we’re right. It’s not exactly a positive outlook on the world, but its the way the world works. If you are a cynical bastard, you can dig up the dirt pretty good. This is why characters like Batman and Dr. House are good detectives, they have a fundamental mistrust of humanity.
Guy: I need help, I feel like I’m dying!
House: Okay, what happened?
Guy: I was helping some nuns build an orphanage, and suddenly I felt a tightness in my chest…
House: Uh-huh. Now tell me what really happened…
Guy: Really, I was helping the nuns…
House: There are no convents around here.
Guy: …Okay, so they weren’t nuns, they were college girls…
House: Keep trying.
Guy: Okay, so it was one high school girl…
House: Nope.
Guy: Okay, so it was a Real Doll dressed up as a high school girl. My roommate came home early, and in my haste to put her away I hit my chest on the bedpost.
House: …Ahem.
Guy: He was angry that I was fucking his Real Doll, so he punched me in the chest.
House: …Ahem.
Guy: He shot me in the chest…
House: …Ahem.
Guy: For snorting his drugs! There, are you happy now?!
House: No, but I can help you now.
However, child-like innocence will allow the person to believe anything they’re told, because they don’t have that fundamental doubt and mistrust in humanity like the rest of us do. This is exactly why kids can believe in Santa Claus. I mean, c’mon – the idea of a fat man living in the coldest place on Earth, riding a sleigh powered by magical fucking reindeer, delivering presents to every kid in the world in all of *one day* just because – c’mon now. We all know that any guy who had a sleigh powered by magical fucking reindeer would be using it to pick up chicks. I mean, sure, that jerk over there might have a nice Ferrari and all, but he doesn’t have a magical flying sled that can take you all the way around the world in one night, does he? C’mon sweetie, get in my ride.
Child-like innocence is a necessity of this world. Otherwise, we would have *never* believed a video game about a portly plumber who falls down a kingdom and into a magical mushroom land, filled with mushroom people, where an army of evil turtles are trying to ruin their shit. If you tried to tell that to us today we’d be like “WTF are you snorting man, gimme some!”
So somehow, my girlfriend has managed to keep her child-like innocence throughout the first 25 years of her life. Need more proof? Only a few months before we started dating, she called up one of her best friends (S-san…one who got married last month) to ask what a blow-job was. By Gob, how in the name of Jesse James do you go through at least 20 years on Earth and NOT know what a blow-job is? S-san answered something along the lines of “well, it’s when you put the guy’s thing in your mouth”, to which my girlfriend said “Wow…girls actually do that?!” S-san says “well, yes, if you want to keep dating the guy for extended periods of time”, and S-san won instant brownie points in my book. I too was skeptical of this conversation at first, but my girlfriend challenged me to call up S-san and ask for verification, and I knew she was serious.
…And of course I didn’t call S-san. Most awkward conversation ever…
Me: Hey, S-san!
S-san: Oh, hi friend’s boyfriend.
Me: How’s it going?
S-san: Not bad I suppose.
Me: Good to hear it. Now, I’ve got a question for you. Did my girlfriend really ask you what a blow-job was a few months before we started dating?
Finding a girl this pure, untainted, and innocent…it just makes me want to exploit the holy shit out of it.
GF: Hey, you’re home late. …And you smell like perfume. And sex! What the hell?!
Me: Okay, okay, now, I did have sex, but hold on, let me explain…
GF: You sure do have some ‘splaining do to…
Me: So I was on the way home from work, right? And this girl comes up to me and begs me for help. As it turns out, she has a very rare disease where, if she doesn’t have sex every 30 minutes, she will die. She had been waiting at the train station for her boyfriend, but his train was late (another suicide jumper) and she was running out of time, so I had to bone her…TO SAVE HER LIFE.
GF: …………………Oh my goodness, is she okay?
Me: Yeah. I saved her life a few times, and then her boyfriend showed up so I came home. But I may need to go save her life again next week.
GF: Well, do whatever you must…
Me: I think also, the virus might mutate, and she’ll need to have sex with the both of us in order to keep her alive. In front of a camera. I’m not sure yet though, I’ll keep you posted…
…Of course I kid.
Anyway, you can all rest assured that my secret is safe.
***
I think I’ve written before about the massive waste Japan produces…haven’t I? Perhaps a tangent off my “why the hell are there no trash cans?” rant. I don’t remember, and I don’t feel like looking for it.
Anyway, Japan produces a lot of waste. Most of it comes from the simple fact that they over package EVERYTHING. You will buy a package of cookies, open the package, find another package, open that, and then find that each cookie has been individually wrapped. If you go into a convenience store and buy a hot and cold food item, they will make it a point to put both in separate bags. Apparently, combining hot and cold food items in one bag is the secret method to unlocking the gates of hell and letting Lucifer pass through. …Common sense would also dictate that if someone is buying a hot food item, they’re going to eat it fairly soon, or at least soon enough so that its not affected by the cold food item. But this is Japan – there’s no need for common sense here!
If you’re ever in Japan, drop by the nearest McDonalds (sure to be one at least 50 meters away from you…no matter where in the country you are…) and watch this magic happen. You’ll get your burger and fries in a bag. The clerk will then put the drink in another bag. She’ll then put these two bags into an entirely new bag. Sometimes, I’ve seen them put that bag into yet another bag. And God help you if you asked for condiments. Its incredible to say the least.
Anyone who hasn’t been to Japan may doubt me, but to all the naysayers – I have picture proof.
My girlfriend bought me a present this weekend. A little early for Christmas, you say? You’re right – it was an apologetic gift. To say sorry for one of those “I hate the way you’re breathing!” moods. Ah, I love it when that special someone gets absolutely incensed at you for no apparent reason at all. And then gets even more mad when you don’t know why she’s upset, because obviously you’re an insensitive bastard who doesn’t know or care about her. Yes, good times indeed. The only thing more fun than this is getting dicked in the ass by a horse until his large monster horse cock punctures your spleen and you bleed to death internally.
Anyway, I digress. So she buys me a present, and gives me this bag:

Note that the Playstation controller is there for reference. Sony does not actually endorse this blog.
However, if you are reading, Sony, please note that I love you and all your wonderful products, and would not be adverse to being endorsed by your tender, loving care.
*Ahem*, anyway, with a bag this size, I sort of expected clothing…like a scarf or something. But let’s take a peek inside, shall we? What’s this? It’s yet another bag!

A peek inside Bag #2 gives us…well…Bag #3!

Bag #3 is somehow larger than the previous bag…how does that work? Oh well, we’ve come this far, we can’t stop now. We look inside Bag #3 to find…

Wow! Red wrapping paper! I wonder what’s inside this…

A box! I have a feeling we’re getting close now! What’s inside of the box?

And here we are at last. My girlfriend’s gift to me was a necklace. It’s pretty cool, isn’t it? A very stylish and trendy necklace. But hold on, let’s take a look at everything together, shall we?

All of that…just for ONE necklace. Somewhere in the world, Al Gore is crying tears of pure environmental agony.
I love how, even after almost 5 years, Japan continues to not make sense in new and exciting ways.
———————————————————————–
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71 Responses

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  1. Tevin said, on December 11, 2007 at 8:17 am

    Hahaha, that innocence thing sounds like a Chinese friend of mine last semester. She started dating a Euro exchange student and he gave her a list of sexual terms as homework because she knew nothing. XD Ah, to be pure once again…fuck that. I like my hard-earned cynicism!
    Hey, let’s send those pics to some of the environmental nazis and let them have fun…at least it’ll get ’em out of the States. =P

  2. Mayhem said, on December 11, 2007 at 8:23 am

    I must have been a cynical bastard from an early age cos I stopped believing in Santa by the time I was about five. Or maybe it was catching my father putting presents in my room one Xmas. One of those two…
    As for packaging, I thought the company I worked for (no names) were bad enough sending a one ounze item in like a foot square box, but this takes the biscuit, cookie and large wedding cake!
    Oh and as last month’s credit card bill was not as high as I was expecting, I’ve sent you some money Az. Merry Xmas πŸ™‚

  3. Gegnar said, on December 11, 2007 at 8:34 am

    awww only 5 bags? i was sure the japanese would at least manage to pull of 10

  4. David said, on December 11, 2007 at 9:09 am

    awwww, she gave you the key to the locker of her heart >the kind that only children usually have.
    So… You finally admit that having for all those years little girls screaming BREASTS at you, slaping your face with their chest, or little boys trying to grab your parts and poking you where the sun dont shine turned you into a kid lover ? Yappari nihonjin ni natta…

  5. ruisu said, on December 11, 2007 at 9:11 am

    Lol…please find out why she has so many oranges.
    I was attempting to read about that wrapping obsession in the Hiragana Times article “Practice of Over Wrapping is not Fading in Japan.” Here’s a quote, “a program called the ‘All Japan Wrapping Championship’ is broadcast on TV.” I now know why you say TV sucks there.

  6. Cait said, on December 11, 2007 at 9:40 am

    Man, I really need to get myself a credit card. I want to make a donation so badly. But I’ve heard that paypal is not exactly the most trustworthy of companies as it comes to financial transactions.
    I’ve been reading GaijinSmash.net since… I don’t know… At that time it was still a part of OP9, I think. I’m from Germany and for two years I have been studying Japanese at デγƒ₯ースブールク倧学. Somehow I stumbled across your site and I never left! πŸ˜€ I call it a blog, though it might not be one, but this is my most favourite blog! I thank you so much for all the hilarious and heartwarming stories along the way and really enjoy your way of writing! Please keep up the good work! (as it would say in some Harvest Moon Game, I think..) πŸ˜€
    Kindest regards from cold and rainy Germany,
    Jenny :3

  7. Anonymous said, on December 11, 2007 at 9:56 am

    Hilarious As Always!

  8. Anonymous said, on December 11, 2007 at 9:56 am

    Hilarious As Always!

  9. Anonymous said, on December 11, 2007 at 10:05 am

    I’m surprised they didn’t plastic wrap the necklace in the box in the wrapping paper in the bag in the bag in the bag.

  10. Anonymous said, on December 11, 2007 at 10:05 am

    I’m surprised they didn’t plastic wrap the necklace in the box in the wrapping paper in the bag in the bag in the bag.

  11. Anonymous said, on December 11, 2007 at 10:53 am

    I never believed in Santa Claus. I can’t remember a time when I didn’t think it was far-fetched.
    Born to be cynical, I guess.

  12. Anonymous said, on December 11, 2007 at 10:53 am

    I never believed in Santa Claus. I can’t remember a time when I didn’t think it was far-fetched.
    Born to be cynical, I guess.

  13. Mike said, on December 11, 2007 at 11:18 am

    The separation of hot and cold items is not uncommon in America either. Especially when buying groceries. I don’t want my hot food from the Deli messing up my yogurt or milk or (insert manly cold item here).

  14. Emi said, on December 11, 2007 at 11:19 am

    The oranges thing actually isn’t so weird. One of my students’ mothers gave me this little shopping bag STUFFED with tangerines as a welcome gift when I arrived a few months back. I used to live in a rural area before I moved, and everyone seemed to have orange trees, or some kind of fruit trees.
    I had the McDonalds thing happen- I ordered a juice box and a hamburger. They put the sealed juice box in its own bag, I wanted to freaking cry when I saw this. The key to avoiding maximum packaging is to either reach for the thing while in the early stages of packaging while saying “daijoubu” (‘that’s fine like that’- I have a pretty big purse, so they believe me), or carry a canvas bag around when you’re shopping for groceries or whatever and make absolutely sure they see the thing when they’re ringing you through.

  15. HWG said, on December 11, 2007 at 11:20 am

    I absolutely love packaging =p Plus i love those kind of bags u posted even more, probably the cost of items goes towards packaging since i hear things in Japan are quite pricey =X
    Probably an east asian thing because my mum loves to collect extra bags etc =/ and asks for extra bags for shopping etc.
    Loving your blog as always.
    From chilly rainy UK -X-

  16. Jez said, on December 11, 2007 at 12:01 pm

    Az, I love your site! BUT PLEASE TELL ME YOU TWO HAVE AT LEAST TALKED ABOUT MARRIAGE!
    I know alot of people like the idea of a surprise proposal, but if getting hitched has yet to be discussed please do. I was blind sided by a surprise proposal this fall and long story short, I need a new roommate cuz the Bf moved out when I said “uhm can we talk about this in a few years?”
    OK now I’m going to read the “waste” section! Got half way through and though “AK! MUST SAVE AZ FROM HEARTBREAK!”

  17. Nony Mouse said, on December 11, 2007 at 12:46 pm

    So basically you paint your girlfriend as a dimwit for actually believing you after you lie to her. Someone find this girl and warn her.

  18. Neil said, on December 11, 2007 at 12:49 pm

    USA vs Japan: Who can create more waste in the next ten years?
    Ready? GO!

  19. Tone said, on December 11, 2007 at 1:15 pm

    ..have you tried tasting the paper? Maybe one of them is edible.
    So Az, being that you are a former teacher, any chance that you are going to try and teach your lady some English? Maybe she could contribute to OP9…

  20. rrtideman said, on December 11, 2007 at 1:52 pm

    OMG! there is no Santa Klaus?

  21. Leushenko said, on December 11, 2007 at 2:00 pm

    Something about “powered by magical fucking reindeer” creates an image of a Porsche-sled with a glowing box at the back just big enough to fit two reindeer…
    Combining that with the notion of a fat, bearded old man trying to pick up girls, is extremely disturbing.

  22. HiEv said, on December 11, 2007 at 2:38 pm

    What gave me a kick was that the name of the store where the bags came from was “Ciaopanic”. It’s a Japanese store, with a combination of Italian (“ciao”) and English (“panic”) words in its name, that effectively mean “good bye panic”. Considering all of that waste they probably should rename the place “Ciaoenvironment”. :-p

  23. lucky said, on December 11, 2007 at 3:01 pm

    Great article, as always.
    Nice that you put in the age of your girlfriend, If you didn’t i would have asked if you were dating one of your ex-students, or their little sister.
    Amazing how a woman that age can be that oblivious.
    Say.. you happen to have Mainichi issho on your PS3 ?:P

  24. Gabe said, on December 11, 2007 at 3:10 pm

    @ Tevin
    Godwin’s Law…
    @ Az
    Wait, I have an explanation for the innocence. You girlfriend is secretly a magical girl! Look at the signs!
    -She is too innocent for someone of her age.
    -She will believe anything.
    -She “works outside the house”! What Japanese woman past the age of 25 is anything but a housewife! It is all a front for her world saving , love powered magical ways!
    -She is prone to mood swings at random and (I know all women are prone to them and some men but here is the giveaway) so buys you a gift to say she is sorry! All I get when my GF mood swings on me is a chocolate bill and sex.
    -Her mother is the nicest person in the world… Nothing says “marry my magical girl daughter because no Japanese man will” more than a box of free doughnuts!
    Next thing you know you are going to be kidnaped by the Japanese Col. Sanders and hiphop McRonnyD and she is going to bust in with a sailor fuku and a wand and make them play DDR with Voltron until they pass out! Beware!

  25. Ihmhi said, on December 11, 2007 at 4:41 pm

    “Talked about marriage?” Are you kidding?
    Look at some of the previous posts and how easily some of the people have gotten married. “So, since we said we were engaged on the apartment lease, why don’t we get married anyway?”
    If Az said something like “So what do you think about marriage?” to his girl (and factoring in the innocence and all), she would probably immediately start crying, say yes, and call her mom to tell her that she’s getting married.

  26. CM said, on December 11, 2007 at 5:41 pm

    Now I wonder… Does your mom know anything about this, or this site?
    I don’t know if that question’s been asked before…

  27. Dal said, on December 11, 2007 at 7:40 pm

    What the hale. It’s like all purchase packagings are modelled after those little Russian dolls.. what are they called? You know what I’m talking about. o_________o

  28. Hugo Fuchs said, on December 11, 2007 at 9:51 pm

    Well that must represent the key to her heart …. aw … how cute.
    Or is it?
    Considering ranko parties are becoming popular in Japan, that maybe her intentions are not so pristine.
    Just kidding. Sort of. You see back in the sixties and seventies, there were key parties for swingers. So what exactly does this have to do with the necklace? Well, you couldn’t really randomly ask just ANYONE, so a key on a necklace was a symbol that you were into it. Yup. that’s the Penthouse magazine key. Penthouse was started in 1965, figure it out.
    While it was used then for swinging, they have different identifying symbols now.
    Anyways, now the key is often seen as being into B&D; the key wearer being the dominant one, the lock wearer being submissive, though that is not their official symbol.
    Some might find this post offensive, but after Japanese porn, it is almost innocent.
    I would have used the word naive to describe your girlfriend rather than innocent.

  29. DC said, on December 11, 2007 at 9:58 pm

    I have finally witnessed the madness first hand AZ! I took my first trip to Japan (stayed in Tokyo) last month, for a week only and experienced many of the crazy things you have posted about the past several years!
    I find it ironic that you posted about the over wrapping of absolutely ANYTHING, because this is one of the first things I noticed about Japan. They appear to be recycling freaks (when you can find what looks to be a trash can, it is actually for cans, bottles, and paper recycling only… nowhere to put like… food/gum/random stuff, or anything else that doesn’t fit into recycling somehow). I imagine they could use up the entire rainforest in the Christmas season with the quadruple wrapping of everything if they didn’t recycle it!
    The only explanations I can come up with is that making paper wrapping/boxes/bags for stuff creates jobs. Also, Japan’s overall tendency towards consumerism….one couldn’t deny the shops this extra excuse to spend money on something completely pointless. Some places even go so far as to have specialized wrapping paper made for their store! I wonder how people would react if someone just *didn’t* layer their candy bar or chips three times…..
    Also, I have witnessed the schoolboy genital attacks firsthand! So, my first experience in Japan is…I get off the plane, decide to take the subway instead of a bus, and witness what you had been referring to for all those years.
    I’m sitting on the subway (trying to pay attention to where the hell I am) and three loud teenage schoolboys get on the subway. Just my luck, they stand right next to where I’m sitting…so, no ignoring their shenanigans. As soon as the doors close, one of the boys crouches in front of the door while the other boy stands right in front of him (I have almost the same view as the crouching boy, as he was right next to me). For their entire trip the crouching boy is taking random and sudden shots at the standing boys junk!
    Instead of the standing boy moving away from his attacker (as there was plenty of room) he just stood there in a semi-defensive pose. At first it appeared that he could sense when the boy was about to attack, because he would randomly jerk his leg and start to block with his hand at the perceived threat. But he wasn’t always successful in predicting the blows (the boy got several shots in) and the crouching boy was quick as lightning…LOL!
    As this is occurring, I immediately thought of your posts and try to suppress the laugh that would be noticed by all on the quiet subway. Even when biting the inside of my mouth, I’m pretty sure I had a silly grin on my face. It was so hard not to laugh…
    ps.) Good luck with the proposal! Any ideas yet on where/how this will occur?

  30. Patrick said, on December 11, 2007 at 10:28 pm

    Think of it this way, Az.. You have plenty of garbage bags now.

  31. mike said, on December 11, 2007 at 10:32 pm

    They’re called matreshki.

  32. HiEv said, on December 11, 2007 at 11:37 pm

    Dal, the “dolls within dolls” are Matryoshka dolls.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matryoshka_doll

  33. ItAintEazy said, on December 11, 2007 at 11:39 pm

    It’s too bad that you are starting this marriage based on lies.
    I kid, I kid.

  34. UncaAndoo said, on December 11, 2007 at 11:47 pm

    My Bag Campaign!
    http://www.monzy.com/?p=231
    Well, not mine, but Monzy’s…you get the idea.
    Fukuro Irimasen!

  35. Justanothermom said, on December 12, 2007 at 12:00 am

    Boy, the problem with wrapping (this is strictly re McDonald’s) is exactly the opposite here in the ‘States! We got some McDonald’s breakfasts last week, and they threw the butter packets right in with the hot syrup containers. Of course, that meant the butter was pour-ready for the toasted muffins and the pancakes, but then it’s hard to tell when you’ve put too much on, and it tends to leak out of the packet once it melts.
    Speaking of McDonald’s, have they introduced Angus burgers over there? Get yourself one the first chance you get!
    Ah, youth! I remember being that gulli- er, naive once, and I was just a little younger than your girlfriend. People may not want to believe you, but I KNOW she will be genuinely, and happily, surprised. My husband told me he planned to marry me before he actually proposed, but I was still just as shocked and happy as if he never gave me any indication, because he had said he was going to pay off some bills before he could even think of marriage. Silly me! I believed that.

  36. Jez said, on December 12, 2007 at 12:59 am

    @ihmhi, we had to say we were engaged for our landlord to allow a male/female cohabitation as he called it. Never meant we actually talked about it. I just figured it was a cheaper way to have sex every night instead of paying rent on two places like we were before… If you read previous posts his hand may have been a little forced by the “no co-signing” rule the Japanese seem to have?

  37. Mr. Nobody said, on December 12, 2007 at 3:13 am

    Hrm, they wrapped it four times over? Four symbolizes death. I bet you could get an apology note and some free stuff out of the company if you complained πŸ™‚
    As for the GF, I still have to believe she’s got a better tataemae than you give her credit for. No, I don’t think she’d read the blog. But you should keep a “coincidence count” for these things. Add a mark for each time something strange happens, like shopping at the Loft but not buying anything. Subtract one for any obvious missed opportunities to create a “coincidence” (otherwise you get too many false positives, sometimes a coincidence really IS just that).
    When the tally goes up far enough, you’ll start seeing through a few more things than you used to.
    That said, she does seem like the sweet type, so you definitely have a good one. It’s quite possible that she’s more perceptive than she lets on, one coincidence isn’t quite enough to judge it either way, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing, either. Just because she doesn’t confront things directly doesn’t mean there aren’t ways around that.
    Also, were you really told that Santa’s sleigh was powered by reindeer having magical sex? That’s pretty screwed up, but it explains a lot… πŸ˜‰
    Good luck on the proposal!

  38. JH from Finland said, on December 12, 2007 at 3:58 am

    Personally, I think your gal’s trustfulness is mostly due to you making a habit of professing your love for Transformers and TMNT. I mean, if you admit to that, what could you possibly have to hide anymore? Your soul has already been laid bare in all its icky horror.

  39. Mel said, on December 12, 2007 at 5:19 am

    Wow that is a nice necklace.
    your gal has such an innocence that I can only be jealous about.

  40. Anonymous said, on December 12, 2007 at 5:37 am

    Seriously I almost died of laughter when you posted those pictures…
    “Bag #3 is somehow larger than the previous bag…how does that work? Oh well, we’ve come this far, we can’t stop now. We look inside Bag #3 to find…”
    Awesome…

  41. Linda said, on December 12, 2007 at 5:43 am

    Here’s one: I can’t believe how much water is wasted for over-flushing. There’s one flush to conceal the sound of pee tinkling, then another flush to flush the pee down the drain. If all the women in Japan flush twice each time they pee, how is there still water in this country?
    I noticed the McD’s thing too.
    Trash cans! The first thing I thought was, “Where the heck are all the trash cans and how is this place so clean when there’s no trash cans?” Do Japanese people go for hours with all their trash accumulating until they either get home or find one of the billion Lawson’s around?
    Anyway, good luck with everything.

  42. gaijin_22467 said, on December 12, 2007 at 7:07 am

    Az, Ive read this blog for a while and finally decided to comment on all your crazy times in Japan-
    Your girlfriend being so innocent must be somehow related to japan itself… listening to you talk about your girlfriend sounds exactly like my girlfriend. She is Japanese, TOTALLY oblivious to what the average person finds remarkably obvious (if i say something EXTREMELY sarcastic, she has no idea that im not being serious…) and she is also completely innocent in regards to certain, ehem, things. (ive been asked a lot of strange questions I never thought Id have to explain to someone over 12….)
    Could this be some sort of strange alternate reality where there are still single Japanese girls over 30 that are totally innocent like this?
    Or is there actually a population of people in the world that havent been totally corrupted by society? I wish I was there…
    o_O

  43. CF said, on December 12, 2007 at 7:50 am

    On GF not speaking English: Friend of hers who does reads site, and can’t keep her mouth shut….
    On Overpackaging: I collect gashopon model kits (anything involving WW2 airplanes, or racing cars); I can only assume the size of the boxes involved is so one can store the model inside the box when taking it to or from one’s local hobby store, and the sheer volume of plastic wrap is for padding. (The less said about the candy, the better…. πŸ™‚ ) But, if it annoys Algore…. >:)
    (Az’s Note: None of her friends speak English either. In fact, my girlfriend is the default “English expert” among everyone she knows, just because she’s dating me.)

  44. Navi said, on December 12, 2007 at 3:18 pm

    I dunno, I think personally that the best part of a present is unwrapping it – shaking the box a little, taking a guess, letting the anticipation build and build as you slowly and painfully peel back the wrapping… It drives my friends crazy. ^^; But anyway, what with the whole Russian Doll wrap job, you now have like 18 different bags and 0.8 fucktonnes of tissue paper to recycle for other uses – redistributing some oranges, maybe?
    Mr. Donut rocks my socks. I remember eating ramen and Pon de Rings there for lunch when I went to high school in Ishigaki. Ah, the good ol’ days… >^,^<
    Been a faithful fan since OP9. You’ve given me a lot of insight into life in Japan and a lot to consider about going on JET; you writing’s so much more than entertainment to me. Thanks for everything, man.

  45. Kat said, on December 12, 2007 at 8:16 pm

    I Roofled when I saw the all of the bag pictures that ended up to be a tiny necklace.
    And don’t think I missed that horse reference. That happened a few years back, if I recall. πŸ˜› Ah, some humans..

  46. LT said, on December 12, 2007 at 10:21 pm

    From one of my sex toy^W^Wcomputer hardware suppliers, I once received a piece of paper inside a cardboard box (~4″x4″x4″) inside another cardboard box (~5″x5″x8″). The larger outer box being stuffed with packing material.

  47. Helen said, on December 12, 2007 at 11:30 pm

    Yes, even girls like mua read this blog. I’m 17 and I’m also of asian descent. Long time reader but I’ve never commented. Since you say that you DO in fact read also the comments just wanted to wish you THE BEST for your proposal. I wish you joy and happiness as you have found this girl with innocence still attached to her, and its a joy that you deserve – after the disastrous OTHER ex’s you’ve been through. (we don’t need to discuss this further.) and GAIJINSMASH it, like you always do πŸ™‚

  48. Kerii-tan said, on December 13, 2007 at 1:21 am

    After visiting Japan myself, I can truely understand the “why the hell are there no trash cans?” rant. I spent about two hours looking for a place to throw out my gum while in Tokyo.

  49. Mike said, on December 13, 2007 at 2:23 pm

    Hey Az, I really enjoy your blog and you definitely rock! One thing you didn’t point out about the bags that kind of balances the over-use of them is that Japan recycles hardcore. Much more than any country I have ever been to. Anyway, good luck with you proposal!

  50. D-Bomb said, on December 13, 2007 at 11:28 pm

    Az,
    Congrats on the soon to be proposal. Seeing as how, though, a lot of your earlier posts were an effort to, if not stamp out the “yellow fever”, then at least make an effort to lessen it. Don’t you find the least bit of irony that you’re about to propose to a Japanese chic in about 10 days. Don’t label me as a hater, I think its super cool that you’re for the most part fluent and literate in Japanese, something I hope to be, but if you were to look back on your old posts and read the things you wrote about Japanese girls presenting them in an unfavorable light, surely you’d see the irony.
    Cheers and good luck
    (Az’s Note: I’ve actually got an editorial coming up about this.)

  51. Ihmhi said, on December 14, 2007 at 4:59 am

    @Jez:
    On the one hand, Az said his girl is pure and innocent. She might interpret talk about marriage as just that: talk.
    On the other hand, she could just as easily hear “Marriage”, break down crying, and start saying “yes yes yes”. Women are unpredictable, no?
    And what if he tried to back out of it somehow and say “No no no, I just want to TALK about it?” Even Az said it himself – the only thing stronger than a Gaijin Smash is a Woman Smash (which is topped by an Obasan Smash, of course). It’s sort of like rock-paper-scissors, except the man always loses. The man is the paper. It’s a metaphor, or something. ^.^’

  52. Curious said, on December 15, 2007 at 1:35 am

    Out of sheer curiosity, does that key open anything? It somehow amuses me when I imagine a conversation like the following:
    Az: So, is this the key to your heart?
    GF: Nope. A storage locker at the bus station.

  53. Steven R. said, on December 15, 2007 at 2:48 am

    Santa Claus was cool until I was 8. I actually started thinking about the lyrics in some of his songs….”He see you when your sleeping, he knows when your awake….”
    And I thought “WTF, why does he know that? Is he stalking me?! O_O”

  54. Optic said, on December 15, 2007 at 12:08 pm

    I know exactly what you mean in your “innocence” rant. I’m dating a Japanese girl that is 21 (I’m 18) and there is just a world of knowledge she knows nothing about, stuff I just assumed everyone would know. It’s actually quite refreshing. But I have to ask, is there no sex education in Japan? Admittedly I spent 9 years in Catholic school where sex-ed was the same thing as being told that “the best brand of condom is Abstinence”, but I picked up everything I know in my first semester of Highschool.

  55. commodorejohn said, on December 16, 2007 at 8:49 pm

    I’m curious: when you wrote “sure to be one at least 50 meters away from you…no matter where in the country you are…,” was that a typo for “not less than 50 meters,” or was it a reference to an as-yet-unexpounded-on weird aspect of Japan where, despite the fact that there are McDonalds’ all over the country, you always somehow manage to be at least 50 meters away from one rather than closer?

  56. Asmodean said, on December 18, 2007 at 4:35 am

    Az, congrats with everything and good luck. I`m over in Shizuoka-ken visiting the girlfriend for her 20th Birthday. Good to be back in Japan. Don`t know how you can live in this cold though.
    Not that I expect to see you but will be in Kyoto area in January some time. Hopefully you will be happily engaged. γŒγ‚“γ°γ£γ¦

  57. Meagan said, on December 18, 2007 at 11:54 am

    I think people are having trouble understanding the nature of her innocence because they’ve not come across it. I use the term “credulous” to describe myself where other people use “gullible” or “naive” — but credulous is far more accurate. I just trust people. I see the best in them and it’s a real stretch for me to assume someone is lying. It takes a long time for me to do so. So I recognise that credulity in your description of your girlfriend, Az, and I’m glad you understand how precious it is.

  58. diashto said, on December 18, 2007 at 7:49 pm

    Heh.. reminds me of a fellow i knew in everquest.

  59. Anonymous said, on December 19, 2007 at 11:57 pm

    I hate to say this, but do you think if this girl was say, white and/or blonde the “innocence” would be interpreted as ditziness? I don’t know how a witty, worldly guy like you could identify with someone who doesn’t even know what a BJ is. Ignorance =/= innocence imo, but if that’s what you’re into…
    (Az’s Note: I see what you’re getting at. I too wondered at one point if it was ignorance, but no, it really is innocence. After getting to know her, I know that.
    And one of the things I like about her is that I feel that she’s making me “cleaner”. Like she’ll ask “why would you do that?” and no matter how many times I try to explain “the real world” she just doesn’t get it. And then I find myself wondering “why would I do that?”)

  60. Anonymous said, on December 19, 2007 at 11:57 pm

    I hate to say this, but do you think if this girl was say, white and/or blonde the “innocence” would be interpreted as ditziness? I don’t know how a witty, worldly guy like you could identify with someone who doesn’t even know what a BJ is. Ignorance =/= innocence imo, but if that’s what you’re into…
    (Az’s Note: I see what you’re getting at. I too wondered at one point if it was ignorance, but no, it really is innocence. After getting to know her, I know that.
    And one of the things I like about her is that I feel that she’s making me “cleaner”. Like she’ll ask “why would you do that?” and no matter how many times I try to explain “the real world” she just doesn’t get it. And then I find myself wondering “why would I do that?”)

  61. Max said, on December 20, 2007 at 4:03 pm

    That’s awesome Az. The world would be a much better place if we could all be cleaner like that. πŸ™‚

  62. Initial D said, on December 21, 2007 at 1:51 am

    That key necklace is mad gay, man. Your blog entries are getting corny. Soon you’ll be a 20-something Japanese year old male wearing dickhole belt, pointy shoes, portable mirror, and a lilo-and-stitch keychain.
    Your girlfriend seems like a ditz (which is the less PC version of “childlike innocense). Is there a blog entry about how you two met, and if so, tell me the date because I really want to read it.

  63. evil_tennyo said, on December 25, 2007 at 8:48 am

    its funny u mentioned this, my bf and I read your blog all the time and he asked me that same question.. what if your girl found out? It makes sense she really wouldn’t know, i remembered you mentioned in a few previous blogs she doesn’t speak english much and well, reading it is no easy walk in the park..
    I’m a bit envious on how innocent she is, it’s hard to find people like that these days, be good to her!
    Good luck on the proposal, and Merry Christmas!

  64. Sinthe said, on December 29, 2007 at 1:51 am

    Wow. The more I learn about Japan, the more I think “WTF is wrong with Japanese people?!” That thing with the bags is INSANE. Al Gore would shit himself if he saw that, and promptly make another useless movie!

  65. Dee said, on December 29, 2007 at 3:43 pm

    I’ve been a fan of your writing for several years now! I’m sorry that you are having such trouble with money. I dropped a little in your paypal account, I hope that it helps. Good Luck with your proposal. I’m rooting for you.

  66. Joe said, on December 30, 2007 at 4:19 am

    I really enjoyed reading this. I’m glad there’s still some innocent people left in this world, and reading your post made me think about how cynical and jaded most people (including me) have become. Try not to corrupt her too much!

  67. Lasse Midling-Jenssen Gautestad said, on January 11, 2008 at 4:53 am

    This is my first time writing to you, but I’ve been reading your blog for several years.
    Thanks to your site I had many good laughs and almost didn’t have anye culture shocks when I finally came to Japan for the first time, last August.
    I am an Norwegian university student studying Japanese, I’ve just finished a semester at Kansai Gaidai in Hirakata, Osaka.
    Happy new years by the way, glad your proposal went well. Wish you the best of luck on the wedding preparations.
    -Lasse-

  68. Paul said, on January 25, 2008 at 2:08 am

    wow i must visited japan your having a blast!!

  69. Jonadab the Unsightly One said, on February 19, 2008 at 11:43 am

    Having been in Japan for the last several years, you may not be aware of the amount of excess packaging we now have in the States. Almost all non-consumable products now come in those hard transparent plastic bubbles that are neigh impossible to open without sustaining injury. Also I’m pretty sure the amount of packaging on food items has at least tripled in the last ten years. We have not attained the level of excess packaging you describe for Japan, but it seems we are headed in that general direction.
    Regarding Santa Claus, I have never understood why our society tolerates that. To me there is nothing more heinous than for parents to outright lie to and deliberately confuse their own children. No wonder so many Americans are so bad at telling truth apart from fiction, if this is how their parents help them learn the skill.
    The first time I ever heard of Santa was in an anthology of children’s stories, from which my mom used to read stories to me. There were various things in there: Henny Penny, Three Billy Goats Gruff, The House That Jack Built, that sort of thing. I guess I must have been three, perhaps four at the most. (By the time I was five dad was reading C.S. Lewis to me, and before that mom read me the whole Little House on the Prairie series, so when I was still into the children’s stories I couldn’t have been much more than four years old.) Anyway, one of the stories in the book was the story of Santa Claus. I thought it was terribly unimaginative and boring, and I never asked mom to read me that one again.
    Somewhere along the line I had it explained to me that the story originated from an actual historical dude, St. Nicholas, who used to give things to the children in his village or something. But he’d lived a long time ago — centuries in the past. Meh, why should I care? Boring story, boring backstory. The whole thing was about as intriguing as watching grass grow.
    So reel forward to a time when I was five or six years old and around Christmas time we were visiting my grandparents. So we went to my dad’s parents’ church on Sunday, and the Sunday School teacher goes around the circle asking everyone in the class of kindergarten-age children, “Is Santa Claus coming to your house?” Can you guess what I said when it came around to me? Bear in mind, at five or six years old, I was not really aware that some children were so unable to distinguish reality from fantasy that they actually believed the whole thing was real. Several of the children had answered in the affirmative, but I had not yet processed the implications of that fact. Maybe they were playing a game or something, who could say? It had never occurred to me that anyone could really be that naive. (I guess that was a special form of naivety on my part.)
    So what did I say? “Santa Claus is dead.” Yeah, I’d never even heard of Nietzche, and that’s what I came up with. The teacher was not pleased with me. When my grandmother heard about it, she was not pleased with my parents, for putting such things in my head. I later found out that the parents of some of the children in the class were displeased as well. But then, hey, I was less than altogether happy with the teacher for wasting Sunday School time on stuff that had, to my way of thinking (then and now) nothing whatsoever to do with Christmas.
    In retrospect, we were just from totally different cultures. These people were normal Americans, and I was, in a word, not. (My dad was attending seminary at the time, so almost all of my friends were children of pastors or seminary students. On top of that, the Grace Brethren are an Anabaptist/Pietist group, so there are marked cultural differences compared to my grandparents’ independent Protestant church. The latter was barely any different from mainstream American culture; you could hardly tell they were called out of the world at all, apart from some minor surface things like that they didn’t drink or smoke or swear.)

  70. Anonymous said, on February 25, 2008 at 4:12 am

    Uhm… wait… putting hot and cold food items in different bags is unusual? It’s commonplace enough in the Philippines that I actually didn’t think it was different from the rest of the world.
    Yes, I know this is somewhat late.

  71. Anonymous said, on February 25, 2008 at 4:12 am

    Uhm… wait… putting hot and cold food items in different bags is unusual? It’s commonplace enough in the Philippines that I actually didn’t think it was different from the rest of the world.
    Yes, I know this is somewhat late.


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