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  1. #1
    Twirling dragon Maciamo's Avatar
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    Bad Japanese manners / Where are the polite Japanese ?

    Manners are culturally biased. Even more than that, they depend on individual sensibility.

    Here are a few things the average Japanese tend to do and which I personally find ill-mannered. As you read this, remember that I am not American and even as a European, probably not from the same country as you, and even if you were, you surely don't have the same social background and personal sensitivity. As a result, you may find that other Westerners behave the same way or even worse than Japanese, but these are things I don't like and don't do.

    1) Being loud in places like restaurants, cafes, etc. Especially laughing very loud. This is true for most people, from little children shouting and running, to groups of teenage girls, to business people to women on their 50's or 60's. I don't mind laughing in a movie theatre, but not in an expensive restaurant. Japanese tend to be amazingly quiet in cinemas and too noisy elsewhere.

    Interestingly Japanese seem not to be very sensitive to noise, and the one I know do not care much about being quiet when people are sleeping (eg. coming back late and talking loud on the phone so that even the neighbour can hear).

    2) People carrying an umbrella when it is (almost) not raining. What can be more annoying on a crowded pavement/sidewalk, especially when you are riding a bicycle and those umbrella-carriers do not care about people around and suddenly wave it into your face or arm.

    In general, I found Japanese to have a bad "street behaviour", not caring at all about other people, like when 5 people walk side by side taking all the pavement for them and you can't pass when you come opposite them, but they won't open up.

    3) Pushing people to get in or out of the train. Shall I also mention men groping women ?

    4) Slurping noisily their tea and their food (not just ramen, but everything). This is particularily true of elderly people.

    5) Touts and sales people. These can be quite tenacious. At the very moment I was writing this thread, one of them came and rang at my door. I don't open anymore as I get them at least once a week, to sell goods or try to convince me to repair my roof. Really annnoying, especially when you open, they see you're a gaijin, they feel embarassed and don't not what to say, but explain anyway, then I tell them I don't need it, but people from the same company come back 3x the same month ! Won't they understand ?!

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  2. #2
    Omnipotence personified Mandylion's Avatar
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    (After pointing several times ot the very nice intro about cultural relativity) I would add,

    1) some people having complete and total lack of control over their small children and not even trying to get them to be quiet/sit still/not run free in restaurants or shopping centers. My favorite is not making their kids apologize for the whole "gaijin da!" comments - I don't buy it in this day and age that young parents don't know that some foreigners consider that very rude indeed. Come on, the kids are not that cute. Once in awhile it is okay, kids will be kids, but all the time? Parents, grow some b****.

    2) Maybe more of a country thing, but peeing at the side of the road. Mainly old men do this, and it is more sad than rude since I have seen it about a thousand times by now.

    3)Using a toothpick at the table - again, more of a old man habit.

    4)Staring. I know what this is all about and why people do it, but it is a shock at first.

    5)Smoking in enclosed areas. I'm all for the freedom for people to mess up their bodies and raise the cost of insurance, but smoking where others can suck your smoke is selfish and shows a basic lack of repsect for others. I don't force people to eat the junk food I carry around from time to time, others shouldn't force me to an earlier grave (smoking is still very big in Japan and out in the country).

    There are more, but I will stop here.
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  3. #3
    Finally Enlighted One Buddha Smoker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mandylion & Maciamo
    1) some people having complete and total lack of control over their small children and not even trying to get them to be quiet/sit still/not run free in restaurants or shopping centers. My favorite is not making their kids apologize for the whole "gaijin da!" comments - I don't buy it in this day and age that young parents don't know that some foreigners consider that very rude indeed. Come on, the kids are not that cute. Once in awhile it is okay, kids will be kids, but all the time? Parents, grow some b****.

    1) Being loud in places like restaurants, cafes, etc. Especially laughing very loud. This is true for most people, from little children shouting and running, to groups of teenage girls, to business people to women on their 50's or 60's. I don't mind laughing in a movie theatre, but not in an expensive restaurant. Japanese tend to be amazingly quiet in cinemas and too noisy elsewhere.
    I think kids that seem to be from a circus are the ones that get me. I know that I am strict on my daughter which I think is funny sometimes. If we go out to eat with friends and they have their kids which happen to be jumping around and just plain being noisy then my kid wants to join in because she sees the other kids. But, I give her the evil eye and the strong voice and she sits right back down but then I reward her later for being good. I think kids have to have discipline and strictness or else they turn into wild child.

    If I had a Circus booth then it would be something like this
    *Come on in and see the MONKEY BOY & GIRL..only a 1000 yen..sit down and try to have a nice dinner and we will release the kids to give you the real effect of MONKEY CHILDREN*

  4. #4
    Regular Member Tokis-Phoenix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mandylion
    (After pointing several times ot the very nice intro about cultural relativity) I would add,
    1) some people having complete and total lack of control over their small children and not even trying to get them to be quiet/sit still/not run free in restaurants or shopping centers. My favorite is not making their kids apologize for the whole "gaijin da!" comments - I don't buy it in this day and age that young parents don't know that some foreigners consider that very rude indeed. Come on, the kids are not that cute. Once in awhile it is okay, kids will be kids, but all the time? Parents, grow some b****.
    2) Maybe more of a country thing, but peeing at the side of the road. Mainly old men do this, and it is more sad than rude since I have seen it about a thousand times by now.
    3)Using a toothpick at the table - again, more of a old man habit.
    4)Staring. I know what this is all about and why people do it, but it is a shock at first.
    5)Smoking in enclosed areas. I'm all for the freedom for people to mess up their bodies and raise the cost of insurance, but smoking where others can suck your smoke is selfish and shows a basic lack of repsect for others. I don't force people to eat the junk food I carry around from time to time, others shouldn't force me to an earlier grave (smoking is still very big in Japan and out in the country).
    There are more, but I will stop here.
    With the smoking thing, i dont see a problem with it as long as the people smoking are doing in a smoking area/room(which are usually conviently placed near a door or fan/air vent or whatever etc), because its a located area where they are supposed to do it if they want to- i agree though if the person is smoking in area where they shouldn't, or it doesn't say(which usually means they shouldn't) then i agree its quite rude.
    I agree though with all your other points, although i would like to add that i personally find it worse when people eat with their mouth open throughout their entire meal at the table rather than picking their teeth clean.

  5. #5
    I jump to conclusions mad pierrot's Avatar
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    I won't complain about the loudness....

    Because I'm fairly loud myself. But it's funny you should mention the movie theaters... because just this weekend I went to a theater and couldn't help but notice how quiet everyone was. I mean, I've seen comedies in Japan and no one laughs. It makes me feel like a jerk when I'm the only one in the theater laughing his *** off.


  6. #6
    Anjin Brooker's Avatar
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    Compared to Westerners, I think the Japanese a pretty quiet wherever they go. I would talk to gaijin friends on the trains and would constantly be shushhhhhing them because it was a little embarrasing how loud they were. And J-people are usually pretty good about keeping the cell phone conversations down (or at least better than a lot of people I see at home).

    Re: Men peeing in public. Yeah, what's up with that!? I could never understand why they thought that was OK. I would see old guys peeing in ditches in clear view of old women, children, etc. without making any attempt to conceal themselves. The only time I ever see that in America is late at night on a weekend right after the bars have closed and it's only young people. If I ever do it in public I at least try to find a place where no one is going to see me.

    I let the slurping thing slide even though I find it quite annoying because I know that it's OK in Japan.

    What about things Japanese find rude that gaijin do?? For example, I couldn't get used to the fact that I wasn't supposed to eat in public, and I broke this rule a lot. I would always grab an onigiri on the way to work and sometimes got dirty looks from people. Here at home, no one thinks twice about eating in public. On a long JR ride, I'd even sometimes break out a bowl of gyudon from Lawson. I know I shouldn't have, but I just didn't see the harm in it. Am I going to gaijin hell???
    Last edited by Brooker; Jun 8, 2004 at 17:41.
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  7. #7
    Twirling dragon Maciamo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mad pierrot
    But it's funny you should mention the movie theaters... because just this weekend I went to a theater and couldn't help but notice how quiet everyone was. I mean, I've seen comedies in Japan and no one laughs. It makes me feel like a jerk when I'm the only one in the theater laughing his *** off.
    I think that is simply because they do not understand the jokes. That's sad, but Japanese translations are horribly bad, or at least we could say that it is often impossible to translate jokes. I have seen movies with Japanese whose English was good enough not to care about the subtitles (and they are few and far between, even among high TOEIC scorers), and they were laughing as they should (like me ). But others kept quiet. When the movies are Japanese, or dubbed and easy to translate (like the Disney's), or when the situation (rather than what is said) is funny, then the Japanese laugh quite a lot.

    Humour is also a cultural thing. I often watch TV programmes with my wife (because she wants me to or because I am bored), and whereas she laughs all the time, I can't understand what is funny ; it's just plain stupid to me, eventhough I understand everything they say. Japanese people laugh when they see a celebrity eat pasta like a pig, or when someone makes a strange face. I guessed I would have laughed when I was 5, but not ever since for such stupidities. That is one of the reason why I find Japanese TV so puerile (Golgo, what do you have to reply to that ?).

    Quote Originally Posted by Brooker
    Compared to Westernern, I think the Japanese a pretty quiet wherever they go. I would talk to gaijin friends on the trains and would constantly be shushhhhhing them because it was a little embarrasing how loud they were.
    Are your friends American ? Again, why saying "Westerners" when there is such a big gap between each country. Europeans usually Americans are loud (and indeed louder than Japanese in average, which is why I mentioned it in the intro). But even inside Europe, an Italian or Spaniard will definitely be louder than a Finn or a Norwegian. Interestingly, French and Belgian people tend to be quite intolerant to noise, contrarily to their other Latin neighbours.

    And J-people are usually pretty good about keeping the cell phone conversations down (or at least better than a lot of people I see at home).
    That is true indeed. One good point for them.

    What about things Japanese find rude that gaijin do?? For example, I couldn't get used to the fact that I wasn't supposed to eat in public, and I broke this rule a lot.
    I guess that will be answer by reading the article regarding Japanese manners and etiquette. As I said there, not eating in the street is one of the most difficult thing to adapt to for foreigners (of about any nationality) in Japan. That one really doesn't make sense to me and I criticize Japanese would criticize me for their illogicism, narrow-mindedness and slef-contradiction. They can't even tell me if the problem is eating outside (they eat in "yatai" during matsuri), eating while standing (like in some ramen-ya), or eating while walking (like Japanese do for ice-cream or other snacks like "tai-yaki" or "tako-yaki"). I like eating while standing (even at home) and get scolded by my wife for doing so. But I rarely eat while walking.

  8. #8
    Anjin Brooker's Avatar
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    @Maciamo Re: J-TV

    So much of humor in English is plays on words and double meanings. Often when I watch a movie and I see something funny, I think, "Man, that wouldn't make any sense when translated."

    Maciamo wrote....
    Are your friends American ? Again, why saying "Westerners" when there is such a big gap between each country.
    No. I say "Westerners" because the friends I was referring to were Australian or English. Australians especially have a tendancy to be loud, but are also a hell of a lot of fun to hang out with.

    They can't even tell me if the problem is eating outside (they eat in "yatai" during matsuri), eating while standing (like in some ramen-ya), or eating while walking (like Japanese do for ice-cream or other snacks like "tai-yaki" or "tako-yaki").
    I suspect it's the walking while eating that bothers them the most.

  9. #9
    月曜日ザ浪人
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    The peeing by the side of the road is right on. I remember driving in Nagano about a year or two ago and there was a group of tour buses and their inmates in a small parking lot just really pulled off the road. This guy obviously really needed to go, and felt that he should turn away from the group out of politeness. Only one flaw with his plan - he ended up peeing into the oncoming traffic. Gave us ashock as we came round the corner....
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    Where I'm Supposed to Be kirei_na_me's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maciamo
    In general, I found Japanese to have a bad "street behaviour", not caring at all about other people, like when 5 people walk side by side taking all the pavement for them and you can't pass when you come opposite them, but they won't open up.
    I can relate to this one! Not talking about umbrellas, but just bad 'street behavior' in general. One thing that bugs me more than anything is my husband's apparent disregard for people in public places. Especially if we're in a crowded store with a shopping cart! He cut in front of people, bump into people, he won't move if he's looking at something and someone else comes along and wants to look at whatever it is, etc. etc. And he will not say 'excuse me' for anything like that! It makes me crazy! It is so embarassing and it is just plain rude.

    Also, another thing that irritates the hell out of me is his inability to be on time for appointments. I don't know if this is a Japanese thing or just a guy thing or what, but he seems to think he can take his time getting to an appointment. If I have to depend on him to take one of the kids or me to the doctor or somewhere, I might as well count on being at least 10 minutes late. We have had terrible fights over that. My main point is that it is an appointment. That means you're supposed to be there on time or better yet, several minutes before the appointment time. It's common courtesy! He seems to think that because you have an appointment, you are allowed to be late? Oh, it drives me crazy.
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  11. #11
    Finally Enlighted One Buddha Smoker's Avatar
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    What about the people in the train that spread their legs (usually businessmen) and don't let people sit down? The train seat is typically made to hold 3 (small section on the ends) and 7 (big middle sections) people but they take up two people's room and 5 (maybe 6) are sitting. That really gets under my skin sometimes.

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    Regular Member den4's Avatar
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    I sometimes wonder if the folks in Japan aren't sometimes lost in their own world, and the personal space issue is annoying, but I guess that could be the same for any asian country with an overabundant population smashed together due to the lack of space. The olde timers that would stop all of a sudden, for no apparent reason, blocking the flow of people traffic flow always annoyed me, moreso than the constant bumping into one another..
    but I will say that those that cause accidents, or traffic delays and snarls because they are driving and talking on their cell phones, reading the newspapers, eating, etc. are what annoys me the most...and these people are in the US as well...probably in every country....lost in their own little world with no regard of what's going on around them....
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  13. #13
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    @ topic title
    I can relate to this one! Not talking about umbrellas, but just bad 'street behavior' in general. One thing that bugs me more than anything is my husband's apparent disregard for people in public places. Especially if we're in a crowded store with a shopping cart! He cuts in front of people, bump into people, he won't move if he's looking at something and someone else comes along and wants to look at whatever it is, etc. etc. And he will not say 'excuse me' for anything like that! It makes me crazy! It is so embarassing and it is just plain rude.
    i actually love this about japan! hahahahahaha! it's the main reason i go to japan!
    actually, i don't think any of these are bad manners imo

    ...is his inability to be on time for appointments. I don't know if this is a Japanese thing or just a guy thing or what, but he seems to think he can take his time getting to an appointment.
    that is very rare imo/ime
    maybe he thinks it's a perk of being in america? (does he do it in japan?) *notes that many americans are pathologically late themselves -- myself being one of them*
    Last edited by Maciamo; Jun 9, 2004 at 19:21. Reason: quotes !
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    Where I'm Supposed to Be kirei_na_me's Avatar
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    Maybe I'm just overly sensitive sometimes, but I do think it's respectful to excuse yourself for bumping into someone or getting in someone's way. That's just the way I am. It's not like we live in a major city. We live in a town with a population of under a thousand.

  15. #15
    Junior Member DoctorP's Avatar
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    One thing that bugs me more than anything is my husband's apparent disregard for people in public places. Especially if we're in a crowded store with a shopping cart! He cut in front of people, bump into people, he won't move if he's looking at something and someone else comes along and wants to look at whatever it is, etc. etc. And he will not say 'excuse me' for anything like that! It makes me crazy! It is so embarassing and it is just plain rude.
    This reminds me of when I lived in San Diego and used to shop at the Asian markets. The people who shopped there were just plain rude. Acting just like you described. I really haven't seen it much in Japan though. People seem to be very respectful to me!

    ...is his inability to be on time for appointments. I don't know if this is a Japanese thing or just a guy thing or what, but he seems to think he can take his time getting to an appointment
    I don't see this as a Japanese thing at all. Whenever I have dealt with Japanese people, I have always seen them as very punctual people. Living in Okinawa on the other hand is another story! It is almost expected that people will be late...no matter what! It is commonly referred to as "Okinawa Time". But I know many mainland Japanese who live here that never fall into that catagory. They are always on time!

    A couple of people mentioned the peeing on the side of the road...I never had a problem with this. I grew up in the South(in the country), and it was never a big thing to see someone stopped and relieving themselves somewhere! As long as your not flashing everyone!

  16. #16
    Twirling dragon Maciamo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CC1
    Whenever I have dealt with Japanese people, I have always seen them as very punctual people. Living in Okinawa on the other hand is another story! It is almost expected that people will be late...no matter what! It is commonly referred to as "Okinawa Time". But I know many mainland Japanese who live here that never fall into that catagory. They are always on time!
    I don't like the abusing use of "always" and "never". Anyhow, you shouldn't base yourself on such stereotypes. Among the Japanese I know, some of them are typically 10 or even 20 min late to appointments, while most of more or less on time and a few in advance. I have noticed that those who usually arrive late tend to be dressed in a much more casual manner too. The male/female rate is about the same. At least there is some regularity, and those who are late are late most of the time. Among about 100 Japanese I have had appointments with (for business), only 6 have been almost constantly late. That is few, but they exist.

  17. #17
    Finally Enlighted One Buddha Smoker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maciamo
    I don't like the abusing use of "always" and "never". Anyhow, you shouldn't base yourself on such stereotypes. Among the Japanese I know, some of them are typically 10 or even 20 min late to appointments, while most of more or less on time and a few in advance. I have noticed that those who usually arrive late tend to be dressed in a much more casual manner too. The male/female rate is about the same. At least there is some regularity, and those who are late are late most of the time. Among about 100 Japanese I have had appointments with (for business), only 6 have been almost constantly late. That is few, but they exist.
    I agree the Always & Never words are not possible in just about any society.

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    月曜日ザ浪人
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    I find that being tall, people tend to stay out of my way if I walk towards them. My wife has more stories about being smushed by people in the supermarket or on the street.

  19. #19
    Regular Member Wakaranai's Avatar
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    I know that is considered rude for you to wash in the bath water, you are suposed to wash first. Is it ok to fart in the water? I have never heard any one talk about this issue?
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  20. #20
    Regular Member -Yu-'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maciamo


    1) Being loud in places like restaurants, cafes, etc. Especially laughing very loud. This is true for most people, from little children shouting and running, to groups of teenage girls, to business people to women on their 50's or 60's. I don't mind laughing in a movie theatre, but not in an expensive restaurant. Japanese tend to be amazingly quiet in cinemas and too noisy elsewhere.

    Interestingly Japanese seem not to be very sensitive to noise, and the one I know do not care much about being quiet when people are sleeping (eg. coming back late and talking loud on the phone so that even the neighbour can hear).

    2) People carrying an umbrella when it is (almost) not raining. What can be more annoying on a crowded pavement/sidewalk, especially when you are riding a bicycle and those umbrella-carriers do not care about people around and suddenly wave it into your face or arm.


    3) Pushing people to get in or out of the train. Shall I also mention men groping women ?

    4) Slurping noisily their tea and their food (not just ramen, but everything). This is particularily true of elderly people.

    5) Touts and sales people. These can be quite tenacious. At the very moment I was writing this thread, one of them came and rang at my door. I don't open anymore as I get them at least once a week, to sell goods or try to convince me to repair my roof. Really annnoying, especially when you open, they see you're a gaijin, they feel embarassed and don't not what to say, but explain anyway, then I tell them I don't need it, but people from the same company come back 3x the same month ! Won't they understand ?!
    1. I think Japanese people don't like others being loud as well but perhaps they don't tell them to be quiet, cause Japanese people tend not to communicate to others that they don't know.
    In western culture people tend to talk to others even if they don't know them but this rarely happenes in Japan.

    2.Hummm, I can't really blame on them doing it cause I sometimes do it too though I don't want to. The thing is at crowded and narrowed places you can't really stop doing it.
    and if you are in a ctouwded place, I think you shouldn't ride on bicycle first of all.

    3 It is matter of too large population and not enough space in trains for them.
    I've never seen men groping women before but seen this kind of things on the media many times.


    4 Slurping food actually annoys hell out of me but I can't say it to them cause I was brought by my father who hates people doing it and he told me not to, I think it was because he knew a lot about western culture. In result, as I wrote above, I can't stop them from doing it cause how you eat food is really up to you in Japan, I think.
    Oh, by the way, I eat something like noodles with making sound, cause I'm a Japanese!!!

    5 Yes, indeed it's quiet annoying and really dirty job. What one of the gus who came to my house did was after my father refusing his negotiation the guy kicked the entrance's door and ran away.

  21. #21
    Techno Nudger Rich303's Avatar
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    Maybe I should keep my mouth shut as I've only spent a short time in Japan,
    but while on the train the past year in the UK I've been spat at, called a 'queer' by a girl I wouldn't give a cigarette to, and hit in the head for the 'crime' of falling asleep.
    I find all this much more offensive than any manners I encounted in Japan.

    However, I guess over a period of time things can get to you so I will keep an open mind. When you spend any length of time in a country you will find things that bug you.

  22. #22
    Regular Member Tollen's Avatar
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    Talking

    Quote Originally Posted by Rich303
    Maybe I should keep my mouth shut as I've only spent a short time in Japan,
    but while on the train the past year in the UK I've been spat at, called a 'queer' by a girl I wouldn't give a cigarette to, and hit in the head for the 'crime' of falling asleep.
    I find all this much more offensive than any manners I encounted in Japan.
    However, I guess over a period of time things can get to you so I will keep an open mind. When you spend any length of time in a country you will find things that bug you.
    I dont know what its like to live in japan but for sure in the UK on trains and busses i'v often been called or had things thrown at me or seen it happen to others... its just plain wrong

    And i don't know about smokers in public places (i do agree its wrong) but on public transport in the UK (which is non-smoking) I'v occasionally found cannabis smokers which is just completely out of order...

    lol so to me it seems that manners in japan and on japanese public transport seem bliss ^_^
    ^_^

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  23. #23
    Horizon Rider Kinsao's Avatar
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    Yeah, the wonderful UK, such a friendly and welcoming country...
    I kid, it's not so very bad -- but the public transport isn't exactly pleasurable.

  24. #24
    tsuyaku o tsukete kudasai nurizeko's Avatar
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    Interestingly Japanese seem not to be very sensitive to noise, and the one I know do not care much about being quiet when people are sleeping (eg. coming back late and talking loud on the phone so that even the neighbour can hear).
    Oh how i know about it, i wonder how they ever get sleep, and why is it so hard to put at least basic sound proofing into the walls?.....its not going to kill them.
    I guess us pampered gaijin are too used to you know, privacy and peace and quiet durring the night. Silly foolish us.
    2) Maybe more of a country thing, but peeing at the side of the road. Mainly old men do this, and it is more sad than rude since I have seen it about a thousand times by now.
    Its more then understandable on the motorways in tokyo, it took getting out into the country before i could take a whizz, but i couldnt hold that long, i eventually had to go pee in some bushes by the side of the road....so utterly embarrassing....i tell you at that time, i wanted to hunt koizumi down and tell him to f***ing do something useful like adding rest stops along the japanese motorways....it just boggles the mind, japanese must have bladders of steel...
    3)Using a toothpick at the table - again, more of a old man habit.
    Apparently its okay if you cover your mouth with your hand, i aint got a problem with toothpicks myself.
    What about things Japanese find rude that gaijin do?? For example, I couldn't get used to the fact that I wasn't supposed to eat in public, and I broke this rule a lot. I would always grab an onigiri on the way to work and sometimes got dirty looks from people. Here at home, no one thinks twice about eating in public. On a long JR ride, I'd even sometimes break out a bowl of gyudon from Lawson. I know I shouldn't have, but I just didn't see the harm in it. Am I going to gaijin hell???
    Yes...well, not really, i musta lived in a really bloody progressive thinknig part of japan because ive never had troubles with manners and rudeness (mostly) though maybe im just by chance of happy coincedence in a way similar to the japanese mindset, i do enjoy keeping to myself in public, and ever since i was little i was always told i was shouting when i talked to people as a kid, ive made a concious effort to be as quiet as possible.
    Not only is it quiet, they all sit there until the end credits have finished, ik couldnt believe it, i wanted to leave but i sat there like a ***** because i didnt want to look like the dumb gaijin but, we went to see memiors of a geisha/sayuri, (my girlfriends name is similar, have a guess) but i couldnt believe it, it was actually in english with japanese subtitles, so at least i could understand what they were saying.
    As for foreigners being loud i dunno, im british, most gaijin i saw were quiet, but theres always a group of americans (or canadians maybe...) that you can hear long before you spot them comming, and god forbid your in a store when they are there, misbehaving as immature kids in adult bodies they are, and then you have to get "the look" from the japanese as if they expect me any minute to break out in similar poor public behaviour....
    I like eating while standing (even at home) and get scolded by my wife for doing so. But I rarely eat while walking.
    I was always walking about the livingroom with a bowl of rice sometimes and eating it, and my girlfriend was always telling me to sit down.....i always assumed she worried i had the hand control of a 5 year old and would drop my food all over the floor, it was an interesting experience getting told off like a child again, despite the fact i am bigger and taller then here, i guess the few months age gap she has on me gives her a boosted ego.
    In general, I found Japanese to have a bad "street behaviour", not caring at all about other people, like when 5 people walk side by side taking all the pavement for them and you can't pass when you come opposite them, but they won't open up.
    Oh dont get me started, i actually had to learn to apologise again when i got home because i just gave up caring when they constantly showed no concern for the fact they bump and push right past, there was at least once or twice when i wanted to thump one of the culprits in the gob for the total utter lack of manners. In a country where you wont tell someone their hair is on fire for fear of their reaction, why cant they take half a second to say "sumimasen" or "gomen"?.....though to be fair a few did, which i was thankful for, but they were a precious few....i did mention the time i helped a delivery man move a large parcel onto our elevator, and his utter joy and gratitude for this act of kindness was so great, his smile was beaming a happyness light that burnt through the walls, along with the constant sound of "aah! arigatou!"?
    Also, another thing that irritates the hell out of me is his inability to be on time for appointments.
    My girlfriend takes her time getting ready, then every time without fail, 7-5 minutes before were actually meant to be getting on the train, she starts panicking and wigging out, its quite amusing, except for when she turns on me, and i just wonder, if we've had the whole day off, why are we only NOW needing to leave for a train?....i woulda left 10 minutes ago, and lightly strolled to kabe station, waited for a train got on and been in time, infact i like arriving 15 minutes before an appointment time just in case, but because my girlfriend is odd like that, we have to run in cold weather to the train, needless to say my lungs hurt and im knackered out.
    What about the people in the train that spread their legs (usually businessmen) and don't let people sit down? The train seat is typically made to hold 3 (small section on the ends) and 7 (big middle sections) people but they take up two people's room and 5 (maybe 6) are sitting. That really gets under my skin sometimes.
    Im british so im used to always getting a seat on a train, but when im on a train, ill always allow a lady or someone else to take a seat (they dont say thankyou by the way) i do this on the busses in my home city, and i always let everyone else on a bus first, so it annoys me when i signal to a lady or something on the train she can have a seat that im right next to, but then someone else barges past and sits down, i swear ide love to punch them in the face throw them across the carridge and allow the elderly lady to sit down as i intended.
    What also annoys me is when a bloke is clearly checking out my girlfriend on the train, and is aware that im noticing it, but continues regardless i mean wtf?....i know it isnt a crime to find a woman attractive, no matter who she is with, but you can at least try and show me some f***ing respect and not drool over my woman when you know fine and well i am noticing it.
    I know that is considered rude for you to wash in the bath water, you are suposed to wash first. Is it ok to fart in the water? I have never heard any one talk about this issue?
    I always thought the rule was just to wash up the nether regions first before you get in, anyway thats what i was taught.
    Personally i like to take my time in the bath, just sit there and soak, but my girlfriend is always washwashwashwash so in the end i had to say "hun, this bathing together has to stop....when you said we should share a bath, i envisioned it being a bit more romantic and a little less torturing".
    Maybe I should keep my mouth shut as I've only spent a short time in Japan,
    but while on the train the past year in the UK I've been spat at, called a 'queer' by a girl I wouldn't give a cigarette to, and hit in the head for the 'crime' of falling asleep.
    I find all this much more offensive than any manners I encounted in Japan.
    However, I guess over a period of time things can get to you so I will keep an open mind. When you spend any length of time in a country you will find things that bug you.
    The infamous pikey/chav/townie....oh how i loath them, they have utterly no respect for public manners and other people and ugh....they just irritate the f*** out of me, i would support any plan to squeeze them into rockets so tightly a japanese train commuter would complain, and launch them into the sun, but their corrupted taint would only make the sun spit them out again.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maciamo
    As a result, you may find that other Westerners behave the same way or even worse than Japanese, but these are things I don't like and don't do.
    In my opinion the above is very optimistic, what Maciamo describe as “ill-mannered” are behaviors that cannot be associated with the average Japanese person, since this behaviors are found in every corner of this planet.
    i.e.
    1. Being loud: ever been to a Latin country ?
    2. People carrying an umbrella: ever been to London ? “street behavior”, no comment is just plain funny.
    3. Pushing people to get in or out of the train: i wish i could do that in London, the tube is half empty and people just don't move from the front of the door.
    4. Slurping: you got me i don't know where else this is found, apart from very elderly people in need of a new set of teeth.
    5. Touts and sales people: so Japanese sales people are quite tenacious, this, i think has more to do with the average (successful) selling person in the world rather than the average Japanese person.


    Quote Originally Posted by Buddha Smoker
    I agree the Always & Never words are not possible in just about any society.
    I don't agree, the Always & Never words are not possible in just about any thing.
    Last edited by scieck; Mar 3, 2006 at 23:52.
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