News From Japan – Week 10

I had originally said that I would post more regularly in February, but one thing led to another and I was very busy with other work-related stuff so in the and I could not really live up to that promise unfortunately. Somehow the month went by really quickly and now it’s already the final non-holiday. Anyways, let’s finish it up with a nice bit of news and hope that next month will see more regular posts again.

We start off with an article about a website. Not mine, unfortunately. Instead, the article is about a website where people can make anonymous noise complaints, which will then be shown on a map. The idea is to create a space where people can vent, as well as create a resource for people that are looking for a new home. Nothing can be more frustrating than moving into your dream home, only to find out that the neighbors are unbearably loud. As someone that lives beneath a family with two kids, who seem to play basketball in their living-room, judging by the noise that they sometimes make, I can relate. The article goes on to give voice to parents, citing their concerns that society does not have enough empathy for kids. In my opinion, this is a two-way street. Sure, people complaining about kids being noisy when outside in the park might lack empathy. But parents who think that living on the top floor with two kids (in a 2-room apartment, mind you) is a good idea, lack empathy just the same in my view.

JapanTimes – You can read the full article here

Next up, we have an article on Tesla, the electric car manufacturer. While wildly successful in other parts of the world, Tesla seems to have some trouble getting their cars to sell in Japan. Even a reduction in prices has not seen sales figures rise. The article then goes on to mention, that Tesla faces homegrown competition in the Nissan Ariya. What the article fails to mention, however, is that Japan also produces the Toyota Prius, which is one of the first eco-friendly hybrid cars that were widely available and commercially successful. So people that are ecologically aware are more likely to drive a Prius than to fork out for a Tesla. From personal experience, climate awareness is not a big thing in Japan, another factor that might contribute to low electric car sales. When Greta Thunberg was campaigning a few years back, most people in Japan were more concerned with whether she was a boy or a girl, rather than the message she was delivering.

MarketWatch – Read the full article here

The Coronavirus has claimed another victim, this time it is the Hadaka Matsuri (The Naked Festival) according to the following article. The festival, which has taken place consecutively for 500 years (or so the Temple, where it is held claims), will still be held, just in a more corona-appropriate manner. Instead of loads of naked men, jostling for twigs and sticks that a priest throws at them, only a select few were allowed to gather and pray for fertility among other things.

CNN Travel – Read the full article here

That’s it for this week, and indeed that’s it for February. I hope this month has treated you all well. See you in March!

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