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Please note: This is a machine translated version. The original article is in German and can be accessed .

Haben es “White” Männer in Japan wirklich leichter?

May 18th, 2017 | Tagged | 10 Comments | 1231 reads

Dieser interessanten Frage wurde einmal in der Kolumne “Spare a thought for the Western men trapped in Japan” in der Digitalausgabe der Japan Times nachgegangen (Link) – garniert mit einem Titelfoto, das einen 32-jährigen Deutschen zeigt, der nach 12 Jahren XY-Tours in Japan seine grosse Liebe fand, von ihr aber nach einem Jahr fallengelassen wurde, weil sie der Meinung war, dass er keine Perspektive in Japan habe.

Eine interessante Frage. Vorab aber vorsichtshalber eine Anmerkung zum Begriff “weisser Mann” in the title (Japankenner können das überspringen). In Japan unterscheidet man im Wesentlichen in アジア人 ajia-jin (Asiate), 黒人 kokujin (Schwarzer) and 白人 hakujin (Weißer). Das ist in Japan nicht abwertend gemeint und linguistisch verständlich. Alle Umschreibungen des Begriffes im Titel würden zu lang oder zu unkorrekt werden, schliesslich leben “die weissen Menschen” west, östlich und südlich von Japan.

Als Mann hört und liest man so oft darüber, wie leicht es doch weiße Männer in Japan hätten. Sie hätten einen Ausländerbonus (den Chinesen und Koreaner jedoch nicht haben), könnten jede Frau rumkriegen und allein mit halbwegs passablen Englischkenntnissen Geld scheffeln bis de Arzt kommt. Zudem leben sie in Japan in einem veritablen Patriarchat, was für Männer natürlich, so sagt man zumindest, eine Spitzensache sei. Ist dem wirklich so?

Was das Geldscheffeln mit Englischkenntnissen angeht – no, rather not. For sure,de, man kann sich mit Unterrichten irgendwie über Wasser halten, doch wirklich reich wird man davon nicht. No longer. Die Englischindustrie hat, trotz fortlaufenden Bildungshungers der Insulaner, auch schon bessere Zeiten gesehen. Und gnadenlose Ausbeutung von Ausländern in einigen Privatschulen gab es auch schon immer und gibt es immer noch. Wenn man Pech hat.

Roppongi - wer hier auf Brautschau geht, sollte wissen, worauf er sich einläßt

Roppongi – wer hier auf Brautschau geht, should know, worauf er sich einläßt

Doch wie sieht es mit den Frauen aus? Genau hier liegt das Problem. For sure,de, wenn man in punkto “aufreißen” die richtigen Wasserlöcher kennt (Stichwort Roppongi), muss nicht gerade blendend aussehen, ein guter Unterhalter sein oder mit Geistesblitz brillieren. Irgendein Deckel findet sich dort allemal für jeden Topf. Doch allzu viele ausländische Männer scheinen sich da blenden zu lassen. Der Fokus auf “kawaii” (cute) sollte nicht davon ablenken, dass natürlich auch japanische Frauen ihre eigene Agenda haben. Die sieht in vielen Fällen nur zwei Optionen vor: Entweder soll der exotische Lover dazu dienen, Japan entfliehen zu können (um nach etlichen Jahren dann festzustellen, dass man ganz unbedingt wieder zurückziehen muss, ob das dem Mann gefällt oder nicht). Oder man hat den typischen japanischen Weg im Sinn: Der Mann soll möglichst viel Geld verdienen, denn die Frau denkt nach der möglichen Geburt von Kindern gar nicht daran, to work (was zu einem grossen Teil leider an der Gesellschaft liegt, die einen solchen Schritt nicht gerade fördert). Ein schönes Haus, ein dickes Auto, viele Geschenke und gutes Essen sollen es dann aber natürlich dennoch sein. Nach der Geburt der Kinder ist der Mann oftmals vorerst sowieso passé, was aber nicht so schlimm ist, wenn er in einer japanischen Firm arbeitet, denn dann kommt er eh kaum nach Hause.

A propos Arbeit: Egal ob man japanisch spricht oder nicht, man ist und bleibt immer der Exot. Das kann in einigen Firmen gut sein, in vielen Firmen ist es jedoch eher schlecht: Verwehrte Aufstiegschancen haben schon so manchen verzweifeln lassen, zumal japanische Firmen nach wie vor immer noch nicht nach dem Leistungsprinzip, sondern nach dem Senioritätsprinzip funktionieren. Da kann man noch so gut sein – man steigt einfach in den nächsten 10 Jahren nicht auf. Wenn man bis dahin nicht an der Arbeitsmoral der Kollegen verzweifelt, die tagsüber sinnlos rumrödeln und dann versuchen, das ganze mit täglichen und sinnlosen, oft unbezahlten Überstunden wieder wettzumachen – vom ausländischen Mitarbeiter wird oft verlangt, dabei mitzumachen.

Doch wie in jedem Fall gibt es zum Glück auch Ausnahmen. Und das eine Frau lieber einen Partner wählt, the “Potential” has, ist einfach nur menschlich. Doch während es genügend Ausnahmen gibt, bei den Partnerinnen wie auch bei den Arbeitsplätzen, sollten glühende Japanfans, die mit dem Gedanken spielen, themselves “times just” in Japan niederzulassen, gewarnt sein. Japan ist eben kein Schlaraffenland – auch hier muss man sich gehörig ins Zeug legen. C’est la vie.

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Lose Gedanken zur japanischen Arbeitswelt

April 8th, 2016 | Tagged , | 7 Comments | 1196 reads

April – das ist nicht nur der Beginn des neuen Schuljahres in Japan, but – logically – auch der Monat, an dem die frischgebackenen Schul- und Universitätsabsolventen ihre neue Arbeit antreten.
So auch bei meinem Kunden, bei dem ich einen Tag in der Woche vor Ort arbeite. Dieser Kunde ist eine mittelgrosse, rein japanische Softwareschmiede, die sich auf Oracle und Salesforce-Entwicklung spezialisiert hat. Und zwar ziemlich erfolgreich – man residiert quasi direkt neben der Ginza. Heute war dabei der erste Tag für 5 Neuankömmlinge: 4 Uni-Absolventen und 1 Quereinsteiger. Die Absolventen haben übrigens – und das ist typisch in Japan – noch nie ernsthaft programmiert und noch nie von Salesforce gehört. Sie sind jedoch die Überlebenden eines interessanten Rekrutierungsprozesses, bei dem Fragen wie “Wie viele Toilettenrollen verbraucht man in Japan pro Jahr?” gestellt werden. An der Frage scheitern schon mal sehr viele, denn diese Frage setzt voraus, dass man ungefähr weiss, wie viele Einwohner das Land hat. Die meisten wissen es nicht.

Und in der Nacht geht es im kuscheligen Nahverkehr nach Hause

Und in der Nacht geht es im kuscheligen Nahverkehr nach Hause

Es gibt da die Mär der Sushiköche, die angeblich jahrelang Teller spülen müssen, bevor sie ihren ersten Fisch aufschlitzen dürfen. Das kommt nicht von ungefähr. Altehrwürdige Sushiläden funktionieren in der Tat nach dem Prinzip: Ein paar Jahre Teller waschen, dann ein paar Jahre Reis zubereiten, dann darf man irgendwann an weissfleischigen Fisch, später an roten (wie Thunfisch und so weiter). Bis man endlich selbst an der Theke steht, können so schnell fast 10 Jahre vergehen. So in etwa läuft das auch bei meinem Kunden. In den ersten zwei Jahren dürfen die Neuankömmlinge quasi nur eines: Testen. Hunderttausende Datensätze erstellen, in allen nur erdenklichen Kombinationen, dann hochladen und testen, bis der CPU schlapp macht. Irgendwann beginnen sie dann, das Programmieren zu lernen – damit sie dann sogenannte Testklassen schreiben dürfen, mit der die richtigen Klassen getestet werden (bei Salesforce ist das Pflicht). Dann wird für eine Prüfung nach der anderen gelernt. Und nach ein paar Jahren darf man, wenn man sich gut geführt hat, zum Kunden – und Spezifikationen für Kunden schreiben. Und Programmieren, so sich herausstellt, dass man das Zeug dafür hat. Das ist eine harte Schule – zwei Jahre nur testen ist nicht Jedermanns Sache, und so verlassen eins, zwei Leute pro Jahr die Firma wieder.

Wer es geschafft hat, darf dann weitermachen wie bisher: Arbeiten bis der letzte Zug fährt, mit hohem Termindruck – aber tagsüber eher döselig und am Handy herumspielend. Gelegentlich mit Kommentaren von oben nach dem Motto “na zum Mittagessen gehen ist diese Woche leider nichts”. If hot, man soll sich das Essen gefälligst während der 13, 14 Stunden vor dem Rechner in den Rachen stopfen. Das ist freilich furchtbar effektiv: For sure,de, das Prinzip des jahrelangen Trainings an der “Basis” hat ungemeine Vorteile. Das dröge Überarbeiten am Computer nicht. Gerade beim Programmieren nicht. Es gibt Ausnahmen, aber in der Regel kann man ein Problem, für das man nach 10 Stunden Arbeit eine Stunde braucht , um es zu lösen, am nächsten Morgen in 10 Minuten lösen.

Kein Themenwechsel, aber eine andere Geschichte: Gestern traf ich im morgendlichen Berufsverkehr jemanden, den ich ein paar Wochen zuvor in meiner Stammkneipe (etwas übertrieben vielleicht, bei rund einer Sitzung pro Monat) kennengelernt hatte. Er ist jetzt im dritten Jahr an der gleichen Universität, bei der ich vor 18 Jahren ein Jahr lang studiert hatte. Zu Beginn des dritten Jahres beginnen japanische Studenten normalerweise ihre Stellensuche. Entschieden wird dann meist noch vor dem Sommer – also fast ein Jahr vor den eigentlichen Abschlussprüfungen, aber die sind ja in Japan nur eine Formsache. Er war frisch gebügelt auf dem Weg zur Informationsveranstaltung einer Firma. Ich fragte ihn, ob er denn plane, vor Arbeitsantritt noch eine grössere Reise zu planen – das machen viele Japaner so. Aus guten Gründen: Er antwortete, dass das wohl angebracht sei – schliesslich könne man ja danach “für die nächsten 40 Jahre nicht mehr verreisen”. Das ist keine sensationelle Feststellung, aber mich überraschte die Selbstverständlichkeit, mit der er das sagte. Da klang kein bisschen Bedauern mit, sondern einfach nur der Tenor, dass das eben der unabänderbare Lauf der Dinge sei, mit dem man sich abgefunden hat. Uni. Ready. 40 Jahre ohne wesentlichen Urlaub arbeiten. Ready. Und wenn dann noch genügend Lebensenergie bleibt und nicht der Krebs oder eine andere Krankheit gegen Ende des Arbeitslebens zugeschlagen hat, vielleicht noch ein bisschen Urlaub.

And, ich lebe gern in Japan. And, ich passe mich natürlich an meine Umwelt an. No, an diese Arbeitsweise, und an diese Denkweise werde ich mich nie anpassen. Ich werde sie aber auch nicht bewerten. Mich versöhnte letztendlich, dass der Kollege mit seinem ihn erwartenden Schicksal versöhnt schien.

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Two years later – and, what is learned?

March 12th, 2013 | Tagged , , | 16 Comments | 1289 reads

Two years ago, it is now so, since a major earthquake Japan by half- and another country 10’000 km west roused regarding nuclear energy. Over 15’000 Dead, more than 3’000 Missed, devastated land, at least 50’000 People, the next due to the nuclear disaster in Fukushima in the 4 Years (the government estimated optimistic) can not return home, Headlines such as “Domestic violence increases in the disaster area” and so on and so forth – disaster pulls behind a long trail of terror and they will play for a long time in the conscience of the people a great role. In a positive sense, since the disaster had released a large amount of positive energy, mediated by numerous people at- and abroad, who declared themselves ready, wanting to help, however. In a negative sense as well, since the quake and the tsunami washed out a huge amount of dirt – from the bowels of politics and the economy. This shit is still good for headlines in Japan (so only recently, was known as, that it is likely already the earthquake and the tsunami was not first, of the NPP was an end).

Has learned from the disaster in Japan? Yes and no. It is still too early, judge this to. And Japan has already, unfortunately, had many opportunities, to learn from vergangegenen earthquake disasters, and we have also learned much: At least as far as earthquake. But not, what tsunami and proper risk analysis in the construction of nuclear power plants in terms. In terms of tsunami long ago recognized geologists then, Before the disaster that densely populated areas with good reason were not previously colonized.
The geological risk analysis of nuclear power plants have to be careful, on whom to point the finger: Geologists and engineers at all the same measurement techniques and experimental values ​​are available than before 40 Years. After all, it is now but it, the nuclear power stations to take afresh look at the, and – this is the real novelty – inform the public of the results. Or, in other words, The press is finally interested, because the audience seems to want to know more.

This tactic carries its risks – for the population: Ultimately, the leaders are trying so, to legitimize individual NPP. However, the press and public are now aware enough, and there is hardly a corner in Japan, in which there is no active faults, falls through a nuclear plant after another. So it seems at least for now. With luck, the science makes it even for inspection. But this is expressed very optimistic, because it does not look like this, seems as if you seriously looking for alternatives for a sustainable energy supply.

Two years after the disaster still live approximately 310’0000 People in shelters. This is explained not necessarily so, that there is a lack of structure agents. In some places it is simply because, that one can not decide, where to build the respective city again. The survivors are quite involved in the decision process, and so it is in some places to a Stuttgart 21 in small town size: Some want to build right there again, where the water was raging – just behind higher dikes. The other, and some places that are in the minority, would rather settle a few miles inland. Still others, and not a few, have had enough and just want to get completely away. There is fear of an accelerated depopulation of the Northeast, and the right to – emigration to keep anyway for decades.

Today, it was said to 14:46 So again Silent prayer! (mokutō – “Silent prayer”) and in many places the sirens wailed. I would not mind, if abolishing peculiar holidays like the Greenery Day or the Day of the Sea, and instead the 11. March declared a holiday: A holiday to commemorate the earthquake- and tsunami victims as well as a reminder of the day of, what can happen, if you play carelessly with fire.

Anyone who has recently received positive reports about – whether print or television, Japanese, English or German – let me know!

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Switching’ off the TV – Entertainment on Japanese TV

February 14th, 2012 | Tagged , | 18 Comments | 5290 reads

The following items I have for the autumn edition (2011/04) the magazine Midori written – and as always, appears here – with delay – the online edition. Have fun reading!

The more oblique the more plump!

A man in the lobster costume, the giant with a plastic hammer pounding the defenseless girl. A naked man, The public bath soap pours, Stool is stacked up and then fall over on his stomach, the billiard ball skidded as human stool. A couple of crazy, somewhere for the 24 Hours locked up every time and get your missed on the buttocks, when they laugh. Where we are? Exactly. In Japanese TV.

A foreign language can have its advantages- and disadvantages. Probably the disadvantages include the fact, that one understands unfortunately, what is there so all of the boob tube. On the other hand – Television can also certainly help to, to learn about the country and its inhabitants. And sometimes it helps tremendously, to learn the language - this is especially true for the Japanese TV, since very glad subtitles are displayed – in almost all programs. This time it should also go to a few observations on Japanese TV – Once a small one for TV and TV-hater friends.

The key 11 and 12 no extra cost

The Japanese like to pull on one string, is indeed well known. Less well known is, that consistently operates very much like the. This starts with the remote for the TV. While the majority of mankind quite successfully made friends with the decimal system has - after all, have indeed 99,9% all people 10 Finger (now well, even that is sometimes different in Japan) or at least 10 Toes, can be found on Japanese Remote usually 12 Buttons with numbers on them. “Aha, 12 Programme also” could think of unsuspecting visitors to Japan so – But since nothing! Not all programs are covered. This then goes something like this when switching: Program - extremely loud noise and flicker on the screen - Program - Program - loud noise, etc.. This also so everyone can enjoy this thrill, Availability varies by region, depending of course: Here are the programs 1, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 10 and 12 occupied, elsewhere only the 1, 2, 4, 6, 8 and 10.

Let's assume, that we have the numbers just as impressed as our account number, Bank code number, Birthday-in-law, etc.. So what's? Largely first advertising, interrupted by program. Japan follows the U.S. model here rather, So very short, But countless commercial breaks, are neither sufficient to, to walk to town, or anything else to make. Probably the reason why is in Japanese hotel rooms, the bar usually right next to the TV (The course may also be due to the narrowness of many hotel rooms). Thus, the time a program with an approach of looking at tension, the commercial breaks towards the end really pushy: Then there really is more advertising than content.

In addition I have my own theory, however,: The advertising is not only shown, to those profitable to sell to customers. No, it is just not enough content, emit more substantial in. Document: After the earthquake, most companies and TV stations from piety reasons waived, Television advertising broadcast. Instead, however, shown in exactly the same number of spots, where basic human values ​​of kindness, Anticipate, Smile, etc., be mediated. As advertising on all channels is organized by the same association, So dudelten the same spots several times per hour on every channel up and down. For days. Bus man, what a relief, after a good week again began to, normal broadcast advertising.

Anyone who wants to understand Japanese TV, comes on, especially in the afternoon with a very small vocabulary. You just need one word, to understand the bulk of the shipment: oishii. This probably the most used adjective in Japanese means “yummy” and at least once per minute will apply, by sich 90% all shipments in the afternoon, but often at night, Turn around food. Since then the studio guest moves in a close-up of something in your mouth, it is followed by leisurely chewing, and then - the tension mounts to the essential - now first advertising - finally followed by a loud, Who would have imagined, oishii!!!. Of course, even with his mouth full. And section. Another mission in the box. Are programs of this type are available in vast quantities, and countless variations. Aus Japan. Abroad. Time with noodle soup. Time with the 10 popular variations, Japanese noodle soup spice as its finished.

Movies are shown surprisingly little on the normal channels. Especially not on Saturday night or holiday,, and this is actually quite reasonable: On days off you should use the time finally, and do not sit spellbound and constantly before the telly. There are also documentaries are few. Serious talk show with more or less prominent contemporaries? Hardly. Unless, it is cooked and eaten while. Big Brother? God forbid! Of these, one will be spared, fortunately on the edge of the world.

That leaves the series and comedy. About the former I can say nothing for lack of competence. But what about all the fun programs - after all, is the Japanese television until about the famous or infamous borders. One thing is for sure: Who wants to bring it in Japan as an ambitious television comedians to something, must have a very thick skin. To keep the bare butt in the camera there is one of the more harmless tasks. Regularly for more or less brutal way is to insert shots daily bread: It is sometimes very surprising, as can be violently Japanese entertainment television. Here you'll like based on slapstick of the early years of cinema, but sometimes, it seems to me, Monty Python in their prime. This need not always a bad thing - provided, man mag Slapstick und Monty Python.

Razor Ramon aka Hard Gay at Work

Sometimes it is as Western observers also quite surprised and wonders, those who actually draws in terms of humor that borders on Japanese TV. As an example, a light form of the name Razor Ramon serve. That was just an ordinary comedian and ex-wrestler, who turned suddenly as Hard Gay his rounds on Japanese TV: Black, tight latex dress, extremely short pants, Chains everywhere, and the exact embodiment of his, what is due to formation of the television with the name “Hard Gay” would associate. Not, Razor Ramon's alter ego that was very talkative - he was mostly busy, his hips suggestively and let it “Fufuuu!” and call like. This happened not only late in the evening, but also occasionally when shooting with real (!) Children in the afternoon at a playground. And lo and behold: Razor Ramon alias Hard Gay did really well in children! Whether Razor Ramon However, with this role, the homosexuals, which is still propagated hide in Japan for social reasons rather than come out, a real pleasure doing, is an open question. It was probably more of a disservice. And eventually disappeared before the omnipresent Razor Ramon suddenly from the scene. By the way: Hard Gay is married in real life with a former model and has two children.

Who became a star, who falls from the sky, is sometimes directly or indirectly from the Yakuza decided. If someone with some people by, He is gone in no time on TV. Most common form of the Disappearances: A small, dirty and dubious, of course, anonymous letter to newspapers. Drugs make themselves as particularly well, which is rarely forgiven in a country, Marijuana is considered also in the hard drug. I think me not from the way – I know at least one case, first-hand. On the other hand, current celebrities also disappear indirectly through the Yakuza: Namely by providing them a connection can be demonstrated to Jenigen (whoever this is the tip).

Without Words

Some programs, however, quite impressive creativity: I am happy to erinere me personally at a show the end of the 90 named Denpa Shōnen, in which different people different tasks were given: One was shut in there naked in an empty room, only supplied with pens and countless puzzle books. The poor man then had to try, get by with only mystery prizes. Two other participants were exposed in South Africa without money - then they had to penetrate hitchhiking, up to the North Cape. That just as much on Japanese TV yarase (Asked scenes) here is, detracts from the pleasure of a little, but who may have evil are thinking.

There is still much more to say on Japanese television. It can - this statement can probably relate to most countries - to be very entertaining and instructive. Enjoyed healthy doses, understood. Otherwise, you only eat the head.

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Column: Living Adventure

November 16th, 2011 | Tagged | 10 Comments | 2199 reads

The following items I have for the summer issue (2011/03) the magazine Midori written – and as always, appears here – with delay – the online edition. Have fun reading!

Japanese homes – let's see, what makes us so think. Tightness, small apartments. Very thin walls. All stuffed with some stuff. Low ceilings. Crowd. Old houses in dark, weathered wood with beautiful, ornate gables on the land. With paper-covered sliding doors. What you might see just so into movies and documentaries.
After several years in Japan and numerous trips around the country should be a lot smarter – normally. But gradually creeps me the feeling, the inconsistencies in terms of living in Japan to increase rather than decrease. Why do you build for example in Japan almost never basement? Why can often not even among the houses half a meter square – and partially even on land? Why is insulation in Japan, an absolute stranger – despite the large temperature differences between summer and winter? Why is it even in multi-storey apartment buildings in Japan is still so much to wood – Despite the numerous earthquakes? Why Mullen in Japan, many their homes and their offices filled to the ceiling? To anticipate – some questions I need an answer, unfortunately, remain guilty, because often there is no conclusive explanation.

An apartment in Japan may have to be associated with painful experiences. There would be times my tiny apartment to students – the equivalent 500 € for 14 Square a real bargain. With a tiny balcony, for the washing machine. The neighboring house was 50 cm away, and the outer corridor (the rule in Japan) that house was directly on my balcony and the “Living room” behind it. Will hot, the inhabitants of the last dwelling of the house next door went directly to my living room to, by almost a meter in front of her home to enter into. There would be a different apartment, in which I well 4 Years lived – with a mammoth, chunky lamp in the kitchen, that hung in front of the stove, and you could not remove the. That lamp was massive – They had a big, cone-shaped gemstone at the bottom. As much as I did at this eingerannt lamp head, It is bordered on the miraculous, I can still speak in complete sentences. Not to mention that the apartment door frames throughout – those were 1.80 m high and thus a few inches lower than the Author. Unfortunately. Drowsy from the apartment to run proved to be an extremely bad idea on several occasions.

Better Living in Japan: Old house in the center of Tokyo (Ebisu)

It is interesting to observe the change in terms of living in Japan: Until a not too distant time had an apartment in Japan, a very different role than for example in Europe. One apartment had to fulfill their purpose and not more. Our own apartment was less than its own retreat, that it was necessary to design a pleasant and unique as possible, but only as a space, where you sleep, eating and watching television. This lesson had to learn as IKEA. 1974 entered the Swedish furniture maker and the Japanese market had 1986 unnerved to give up. 20 Years later the Swedes seemed the time was ripe enough for a new start, and behold: Business is booming, the mid bore 5 Branches are extremely popular and well attended. This may be partly explained by the pricing policy and the exotic status, But the success is built more on the conversion of values ​​when it comes to living room: You put a lot more value these days in a pleasant, individually furnished apartment. Or to put it in the newspeak of the advertising industry to get to the point: Man all begins in Japan, Fun to have on residential. If you look though a few Japanese dwellings so on, you ask yourself seriously, where to get the residents of the place, all items of Canute or Olaf interpret and assemble. Because Japanese homes still are often very narrow and, expressed cautious, “optimally used” – the state could also “littered” call. This also applies to offices, usually in the form of open-plan offices, where often in a permanent competition cases “How many sheets, Letters and books you can probably loose superimpose?” seems to occur.

In, someone at home? Expensive condominiums in Tokyo

Understandably, this aspect of Japanese visitors to Japan sporadic life hardly. Who eliminates a lot of money, This year is also very nice, large and well furnished apartments for rent. Or buy. Who in the greater Tokyo area one 100 Square-foot apartment searches, is on average a price of 300’000 € it. A good value system, you would think there, but wait: In Japan, played with different rules. Houses in Japan have been ever constructed, that they were about to. 30 to 40 Tear off and replace years. This is called “scrap and build”, i.e. “tear down and rebuilding”. Average consumer in the Tokyo area, so in possession of a better job, buys mid-to late 20, usually shortly after the wedding, an apartment. Sometimes a house. Since not everyone has the above amount in piggy bank, takes you to a mortgage from the bank on – Running time is usually 35 Years. So you pay for the next 35 Years, no rent, but repays his loan. That's all well and good, but the apartment is good little later as an investment, since it is unlikely, that the house longer than 50 Years will be. Rather as an investment are good sites, But as a foreigner can not be purchase real estate. Who wants to own land in Japan, must first Japanese to be (this is the way, but the procedure is difficult and tedious).

Sometimes the house is also much shorter than expected. For example, after an earthquake. While there is earthquake insurance in Japan, but they are understandably very expensive. It is questionable, whether the owner of the house, in which the condominium is, has such insurance: If it does not, remains sitting on his injury. Home away, Credit, and still there is no entitlement to a new replacement dwelling. Either you take in terms of seismic safety already made tremendous progress. Up to three floors of the houses are often built while still propagated to a large extent of wood. Interestingly, no basement – Instead, be up to 10 Meter long metal carrier rammed into the ground, Pits dug and filled with concrete and it is finally built: With wood. And for good reason, because wood is still propagated as a preferred building material in earthquake-prone areas.

Rock Solid: Building with wood and steel

Clear, Wood burns well and the tiny spaces between the houses in a residential care for large earthquakes on a regular basis for fire rolls, to eat their way through the cities (most recently in March, Kesennuma 2011 and in Kobe 1996), but the benefits outweigh. Bricks have friends in Japan, therefore a particularly difficult time – Brick behave in the event of an earthquake extremely rude and have an irritating habit, could quickly turning into a big pile of rubble. Gone are the times of enormous failures. So you built in the 1960 earthquake-resistant housing blocks in Niigata, it helped with the massive earthquake 1964 not much – as the ground gave way, dumped the whole apartment blocks just like giant Lego blocks to (see here).

It is particularly interesting in Japan in the weatherproofing of houses. At temperatures up to 0 Degrees in the winter in large parts of Japan and up to 35 Degrees and high humidity in the summer, you'd think, that should improve the quality of living in Japan insulation or significantly help the energy consumption of raw materials not just blessed greatly reduce Japan. But things have not gotten around yet in the high technology Japan. Insulation? Is not it. Double glazed window? None. This is true not only for homes, erstaunlicherweiseoft but also for office buildings.
As one result of the heat island phenomenon in Japanese cities also very bad in the summer without air conditioning manages, Apartments are usually heated with the air conditioner in the winter and cool in summer. Due to the lack of thermal insulation effect unfortunately does not last long: No sooner is the air conditioner, is it just cold in winter and hot in the summer just. About the reasons for the lack of isolation can only surmise. Is it technically too demanding or too expensive, to attach a thermal insulation, the local typhoons and high humidity can withstand? Or are simply too low, energy prices, to justify the effort?

But if you even come to enjoy, an old, to enter the traditional way-built house, will be surprised: These homes are designed from ancient times, that one can make do without air conditioning really: Around the interior of lead that is a narrow passage, can circulate wonderfully through which the air. Moreover, can often be at least two sides of the house open almost completely. But who knows?, Japan may indeed discovered in the coming years, the effective heat recovery potential. The compulsion to save energy is so since the great earthquake in March 2011 and proclaimed as a consequence of the withdrawal from nuclear energy.

More about: Living in Japan

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Fernostalgie

June 9th, 2011 | Tagged , , | 4 Comments | 1101 reads

The following items I have for the spring (2011/02)-Issue of the journal Midori written – and as always, appears here – with delay – the online edition. Have fun reading!

Sometime it is easy to: A certain scene, so pretty in almost every film, so not samurai or some giant lizards occur in it, appears: A rural area, very slowly trundles through a railcar. A Railcar, refer to the profane one, at least in my area as a whole pig tax would. Interestingly, this scene appears mostly in the movie preview, as if this picture a scene would have a special meaning and thus drive the people in crowds to the cinema or DVD-dealers would.

“Piglets tax” tive in star japanischer Province

 

Now, The scene has symbolic significance and does not miss its effect. Although piglets taxes anything but extinct – you do not need to look far, to find in Japan, which still, but the sight of such traits and their associated emotions give rise to a faint suspicion: Is this sparkling, high-technology, innovative, brightly colored and a little crazy about Japan in the heart of more rural, turned sentimental and self-? That would be again a very different picture!

As everywhere sentimentality has two dimensions: The spatial and temporal. Said Piglet because taxes have the advantage, to address both dimensions equal, because these cars were everywhere and they're used to it so for everyone over 40 years in Japan, an integral part of childhood memories (Apart from the residents of small and tiny islands should be). On the other hand there are the tracks still, and indeed in the country. One should bear in mind, Tokyo, for example, that's pretty big though – However, in Japan, known simply as a big village like, because most people do not really come from Tokyo, but from somewhere behind the seven mountains regions. When I get to know someone professionally or privately in Tokyo, I will – understandably – often asked about my background. I then turn the tables on course to be happy (always in danger of running, as a confused response “In, aus Japan!” to hear), -and I am not the answer “Okinawa!” but more on the answer “aus Tokyo” surprised. Tokyo has to look real.
One would think, that an advanced country like Japan phenomena such as mass rural exodus has behind him, but it is not so. The exodus continues. Those looking for good education, can not avoid the capital. Who wants to work in an international atmosphere – and thus are not the infamous Filipino bars mean, must be in the capital. Unless, you hold it more with Portuguese or Spanish, because most immigrants from South America to live more in the area around Nagoya.

Who wants to know, Tokyo looks like no new arrivals, times should be the first or second week of January to spend in the capital – not much is going on, because everyone in the New Year the home, the country, are driven. Unfortunately, the rural area of ​​such Andrangs only twice a year enjoying – the beginning and during the New Year お盆 O-Bon Holidays in mid-August – otherwise vast tracts of land in Japan seem deserted, and you can be happy, to meet here and there sometimes once a 80-year-old farmer. It should be noted here is also, that the exodus does not happen often in stages – Even large cities in the province, As an example I would like once Wakayama or Akita, after all, both prefecture capitals, contend with strong and constant dwindling population numbers, which is attributable not only to the low birth rate. In these towns you often not long after the so-called シャッター 通り shutter dori – Shutters, streets – search: Former shopping streets, in which one finds today only pulled down shutters. No, Most people turn off right from the home and immediately go to the capital, nach Osaka, Fukuoka usw. Sun does not like surprise, dass ca. one in four Japanese living in the Capital Region.

Living room before 40 Years (Shōwa Museum, Takayama)

 

But for the time dimension. Appeared a few years ago in Japan, the blockbuster Always – 三丁目の夕日 3-chōme no Yūhi, literally “Always – In the evening sun 3. Section”. This film not only pushed the people in droves to the cinema, but also many Japanese men in their prime, the tears in your eyes. The film is set in a Tokyo district and within view of Tokyo Tower, which in the time, in which it is in the movie – End of the 1950s – is under construction. In the quarter there is poor, According to Hart – Everyone is familiar with every, There is much to celebrate and much to cut. The first refrigerator and TV in the first quarter provide incredible scenes – while water is still taken with the hand pump in the dusty backyard needs. In short, all are poor but happy, and the progress is coming. These days such a district but not unthinkable (although very rarely become) – But in the neighborhood of the Tokyo Tower, it looks today, to say the least, but some of the other.

What must have been for some time be – every major city was only half-way at the end of the Second World War completely in ruins, and the defeat in the war was a huge shock. As in Germany, followed by years of toil and hunger, until it finally went up in the 1950s – in huge steps. The economic miracle, it was not only in Germany, but also in Japan. But in Japan there was always something else. In Germany, traditionally built brick by brick, with thick walls, on the house that are too long may. Only later we began the construction of commercial buildings with limited life expectancy. In Japan, the latter was always like that. Stone by stone, perhaps even with bricks, war in Japan the popular – were built with wood and expands favorite. It's no wonder – A brick house has hardly a stronger earthquake survival, while wooden houses are flexible enough, also to mitigate severe impacts. As a consequence, that have been repaired countless houses in Germany after the war. In Japan, however, burned the city down to the bottom – everything had to be rebuilt (it had been in Tokyo for example, only good 20 Years before, all you have to build new – after a devastating earthquake). Also, rules as “Houses should not be larger than the church in the village” are unknown in Japan. In good times, and was built, there's no tomorrow.

It is not only the sight of old wooden houses in a dusty neighborhood, of the generation 40+ the heart beat faster, Finally, there are such houses still, but the thought of living together at that time. The social fabric in the major cities, as elsewhere, has also changed greatly – a right neighborhood meanwhile bore must be sought, it is now mostly his own way. Or? This is certainly true for neighborhoods with large homes. But there, where a maximum of 2-storey, very cheap to rent, cobbled together houses look, is it still exist – the cohesion of the residents. As will be celebrated in the summer outdoor barbecue and spontaneous and help each other in one way or other matter. This one is that the participants from all parts of the country mixed lot, is usually not detrimental to good mood – on the contrary. However, in Japan it seems to rule a rule of thumb: Je Armer, the greater the Warhscheinlichkeit, to find such a cohesive.

Tokyo Tower

 

Back to Tokyo Tower: That was then virtually a symbol of the postwar generation and is therefore considered by many very sentimental. Do this, use the red and white, 332 m high tower makes a good start: He is simply adorable and photogenic. The Tokyo Tower is according to the Showa era (1926-1989, 昭和 Shōwa was the motto of Emperor Hirohito). The youngest generation needs to thank God for a similar symbolic structure not to worry: The successor, called Tōkyō Sky Tree, is almost twice as high (634 m) and 2011 be ready. And the Japanese are now hell-bent after.

At this penchant for nostalgia must be something – after all, it is reflected down even in the language. What concerns us through the head, For example, when we suddenly see a poster or notice an odor, which immediately reminds us of childhood? How can we tackle this feeling in German Words? I'm still not sure, But what I also think, There is a whole cascade of words – as “oh, I have not seen for ages” or “oh, those were the days”. In Japanese, there is this feeling of being a word eigenens: 懐かしい natsukashii. And you hear this word very, very often. Just take a minimum of 30 Year-old Japanese after Wooper Looper ask (The reader last column may remember), and the chance, as a response “natsukashii” listen to is pretty big.

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Column: Fried Axolotl complacent?

March 2nd, 2011 | Tagged , , | 5 Comments | 4516 reads

The following items I have for the winter (2010/11)-Issue of the journal Midori written – and as always, appears here – with delay – the online edition. Have fun reading!

 

Axolotl – (Those: Wikimedia Commons)

 

Just remember at this moment, what is an Axolotl? No problem. The axolotl is a type of salamander wannabe, has the password just before the Salamanderwerdung, to be one such: The result is a, now so, Salamanderfisch – looks like a fish with legs up and combed gills. Originally, the animals come from Mexico and there are a high-risk species. In Japan, it was not known – to 1985, as a clever marketer of dry pasta in cans manufacturer Nisshin such a creature, Moreover, even an albino – in a commercial to Japan Durchschnittstarō brought closer. Not under the name Axolotl – can not say yes – but under the name of art rightly suspicious “Wooper Looper”.

It was, how it had come: Suddenly everyone wanted to buy an axolotl, or at least see, and breeding farms sprung up like mushrooms. But at some point had lost the public's interest to see the animals and the breeders, where they remain. Sure, most saddled sometime around or went bankrupt, But at least a breeder or resourceful restaurant owner had a splendid, really very typical Japanese idea: Can not eat the animals? And lo and behold, man kann! Apparently they taste best fried and then somehow for something between chicken and fish (that seems to be cross-culturally: When you eat meat yet unknown, Everyone says it tastes somewhat like chicken).

This does not now, that are offered for sale anywhere in Japan fried in oil axolotl – the number of refreshment stands and restaurants would be very limited. But the story is a good example, how prejudice in Japan (but also in Korea and China) the food is set as such against: Are cultural taboos it surprising little, and one can not be accused of determined Japanese: They are mäklig. In Japan, you just have to have a guilty conscience, if you tell a good or (for our taste) fancy food like. “What the farmer does not, He does not eat” is a saying, In Japanese, the extraordinarily long explanations needed and still is not well understood. This is not to say, everything that everyone likes – I've also met Japanese, The fish do not like or can not stand soy sauce – after all, both ingredients, without which one can not get far.

Japan and its East Asian neighbors advised due to their eating- and other habits is not unusual in the crossfire of international criticism: Bluefin tuna and whales are just two examples. In the latter should be noted, that it is not so much for the love of the Japanese whale meat, but is more about principles and bureaucracy.
It is always fascinating, to see, how little is known generally about foreign cultures: Until my first trip to Japan, that was before 15 Years, I thought, and probably many others also, that is consumed in Japan is virtually non-stop raw fish and rice and drinking sake. I had someone predicted, that in Japan as beans nearly the largest role in the food culture, I would probably never went to Japan. Fermented beans, slimy beans, sweet beans – white, degree, braun, about, long, large, klein – I was shocked. But there were plenty of other, positive surprises, and a few beans used to it sooner or later.

When a few years ago appeared the first Michelin Guide for Japan, There was a frenzy: In Tokyo, there was much more distant star restaurants than anywhere else. And were honored not only Japanese, European but also Japanese restaurants with celebrity chefs. In spite of their own, excellent and varied cuisine is very foreign food – and that includes fast food – Japan has always been popular. Most restaurants leave it to luck, not here, easy to imitate the foreign cuisine – in Japan mixed happily there's no tomorrow, Fried beef with miso, Bread baked with rice flour and natto tilted to the original Italian spaghetti (especially the latter can be like, But one must not).
“What do you miss most about food actually?” I asked once occasionally Japanese in Germany – it comes in an interview with Japanese sooner or later at dinner – and I was surprised, that some are not any court or sushi or something called, but just vegetables. Funny – yet we have so many vegetables: Kale, Red cabbage, Weisskohl, Brussels sprouts, Cauliflower… All there. In Japan, we propose instead to countless varieties of leek, lots of garlic (also surprised me) and all sorts of exotic vegetables around. Is impressive, especially the variety of green leafy vegetables, I also bring the mess after several years in Japan still like to.

Not, that the half-knowledge about the eating habits of other a German phenomenon is: German food is Japanese for most of sausages and potatoes, at least from potatoes. Potatoes on the pizza? German Pizza! Potatoes and onions fried half-hearted? German potato. Potato as a sushi pad I have not seen, But that is to say nothing – some resourceful, cheap family sushi chain has ever put potato salad on the determined acidified rice. In terms of food surprises me since absolutely nothing more in Japan.

Another interesting finding was the lack of available elsewhere politicization of their eating habits or even the attempt, to criticize others because of their eating habits. Fast and junk food are not at all frowned upon, but are – many of at least – mass in healthy eating. After all, even fast food in Japan, what it was meant to be: Extremely cheap. In addition a number of local fast food chains, focusing on Japanese and / or Chinese dishes. Vegetarians in Japan you have been looking, although the country thanks to the variety of vegetables and rice-based dishes really a paradise for vegetarians should be. Sentences like “How can you only eat tuna? The dying out but!” or “This is determined from the factory farming – I do not eat” you can hear most of Japanese, the very, have lived very long in the West.

Especially the Japanese (and the Chinese) Kitchen offers a great testament to the unlimited imagination and experimentation of people: If you have ever seen a sea cucumber or sea squirt living legally, but inevitably has to ask, who is actually the first time the idea came, to bite into such – and afterwards they also have to recommend! How many – lethal – Attempts did it cost, found to be, what part of the ball you would rather fish should be left to a spouse? And as you succeeded in discovering, that cattle delicately marbled, extremely tender meat develop, when they are massaged regularly? About Food in China they say so often, that everything is eaten, demonstrating with his back to the sky. In Japan, it is also (fast) was: Oddly enough, keep to the back but when consumed by dogs, and to confront a Japanese man with the fact, that in Germany also sometimes like to eat rabbits, produced incredulous astonishment to mild horror.
Of course there are also certain limitations on Japanese Taste. But these are very specific and not general. In central European circles as one has his hands full with food, which is still moving, ergo apparently still alive, or recall of the components of a face – Eyes as. In Japan, there are more very specific taste- or combination of characteristics: For example, licorice or milk rice in this country one feels downright perverse.

The view of Japanese eating habits can always teach us at least one: A way, to the Western way of thinking outside the box looking out. Just because you do not know it, one must not refuse. This is not to say, that we must all imitate and hearty to bite the blubber, but a little openness can not hurt – and why should not you start eating?
That someone writes, also fermented, slimy beans, rotten eggs (well, China was the), ate raw horse meat and marinated grasshoppers – partout but has no desire to, Shelling on every time the large eyes of the boiled or roasted sea bream, although supposedly the best in the whole fish should be. They say at least as.

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Column: Mad world of work

December 13th, 2010 | Tagged , | 9 Comments | 1254 reads

The following items I have for the fall (2010)-Issue of the journal Midori written – and as always, appears here – with delay – the online edition. Have fun reading!

Recently, in a business hotel in Japan: I'm too early, to check in., but would still like to turn off the heat if my luggage. In the selfsame is an iPad, I'll need for the later meeting. The battery indicator does, however, to gently, that I brought the device may for nothing. No problem, I think, because at the front desk is a sign of the reference, that it is possible to recharge his cell phone on request, or computer at the reception. So I hand over iPad and charger, and ask, charge it. Immediately the smile disappears from the face of my professional counterparts. His colleague remembers that and joins in. Shortly thereafter, another employee appears on. Whispering. Since one must first ask the manager, whether this will work, the result is. “But why – but there is, that cell phones and computers can be charged”, I try to argue. “The already”, replies to me, “But this is indeed what else”.
Flink disappeared the first employee and was soon back with the manager. The brief looks at the device – and decides, that you could probably classify it somewhere in the category of computer and charge accordingly.

How many times was I told, and is of Japanese nationality at my revelation, that German and Japanese are similar, and indeed so much so determined always got along well (occasionally, in older semesters, garnished with the perennial “Next time but without Italy, or!?”). According to no less Japanese view similar to this well-above all, the attitude to work. Really? Why then lament that most Germans, I meet in Japan, about their work and what it would cost for the nervous, to work in a Japanese company?

One of the first things, came to my attention in Japan, was the sheer number of employees, no matter, where you go. At construction sites, for example, you see very often a person can work around it and there are four people, to discuss each handle. No, there is no trained – these are all experienced construction workers. Standing in front of and behind the construction site often hired to Jedi, to bring their Leutchstäben the traffic often do more harm than good.
In some shops and restaurants prepared people are hardly alone purely, because there are suddenly all alone an army of employees facing – see it all somehow employed, although there is no one. One wonders at the sight of such masses often, how in the world, the business brings in profits. On the other hand, that also explains why the low unemployment rate in Japan permanently, only very rarely 5% climbs.

So if there are so many workers and employees, but everything would actually be useful to establish a normal working day, one might be tempted to think. Nope! It is simply unbelievable, how one can live in Japan, Employees to deal with themselves. Because every little step in an incredibly important meeting discussed, as is confirmed, moved, completely changed, rejected what it's worth. Is not a local decision, the plight particularly evident – Despite several hours of meetings, there is no single result, reported there first must be up later. Inroads and spontaneously take responsibility are frowned upon here – It's about the holistic consensus, and must ultimately confirmed as the upper or. be confirmed. Woe to the, who dares, to interrupt this chain! Single-transgressing decisions and actions disrupt sensitive industrial peace, and penalties for this can be draconian. Large companies such as JR West and Toyota have been made so often in recent times in the pillory. For more about the ways of dealing want to read in Japanese companies, which is at this point in the autobiographical novel “With awe and trembling” the Belgian Amélie Nothomb recommended.

The manner in, Companies mean, It can certainly not be, which connects German and Japanese. There are certainly many exceptions and interpersonal skirmishes with various collateral damage in German companies, but seemingly nonsensical things like umpteen times writing a- and the same letter from exercise- punishment or reasons, or the unwritten law, that you should never show such, that a foreign language better than his boss dominates, even if it would benefit the company, in European climes but should be the exception rather. I hope at least.

It is therefore very much like harmony, for consensus, and for perfection. “Protruding nails must be taken”, says an old Japanese proverb. Looking back, however, exactly, sometimes grabs a cold shudder: Without exception, all seen from the office Monday morning, terribly busy and stressed out, but as soon as you can take to report and ask, what is now pending, often occurs only very vague information such as stuttering and “I must write a few emails” usw. You feel really bad about it, To distribute tasks. Though: Not much really happens during the next few days, the daily ripples and then all are somehow so busy, sure that overtime must be pushed. But then: It's Friday (or Saturday, depending on the company). Suddenly there is panic, it is the phone like crazy, and there are lots of emails sent out. At the same time multiply in the miraculous manner in which calls from some more or less dubious companies and uninvited visits no less dubious representatives.

This irritated me at first, and even after many years I can get used to not really believe. I could think of the extraordinary Telefonierwut our sales on Fridays at. What sense does a cold calling on Friday at 7 Clock in the evening? Would anyone on Friday afternoon, let alone evening, a company in Germany to call and say, “Allow me to introduce myself, we are and the, would you possibly interested in our service?” I can vividly imagine the result: Mild to clear disinterest (Perhaps I was also not long in Germany). I was curious: Behind it a clever tactic? Was there a strategy? The answer was disillusioning: “We did not notice. Call us really more on Friday?”. And the worst: People go on Friday evening after 7 Clock on the phone and show an interest!

Someone asks me for the work ethic in Germany, I reply like, that the principle “Service is service, Place for everything” an important idea is. In Japan, however, is often mixed. Where does the service on, where does the private? The boundaries blur. In the mobile phone are dozens to hundreds of phone numbers. Could? Friend? Sometimes you get a clear answer. How many contracts are probably not in Japan in the office, but outside, completed in drinking halls or restaurants? Would anyone like to pursue in Japan industrial espionage, it must be only an employee or a regular in various popular meeting places easily.

Strangely, but then there are parallels in Germany and Japan – such as the Reglementierwut in companies and offices. The drives, however, as the example above, some of them quite strange flowers in the hotel: If there is not anything in the instructions, it can not be made or set in motion first, the entire apparatus. In addition, instructions arrive from various organizations. So it is for example, that almost all businesses have an English sign at the checkout stand: “Please understand, that we can go no money”. Provided in part by the addition “Due to problems in the past zahlreichr”. As if the 2% Foreigners in Japan (of which about 80% non-English speaking) nothing else to do than constantly have to move from shop to shop to change money.

And yet, both Japan and Germany economically very successful – Japanese and German brands are popular abroad and make both nations to exporting nations. Japanese prefer to justify the hard work and a penchant for perfectionism. Still, it is incredibly difficult for German (and other foreigners), be easily integrated into Japanese companies. And for Japanese, almost exclusively of foreigners to work out business – Japan is just Japan.

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Battle of the sexes in Japanese – or: Nothing is, it seems

September 6th, 2010 | Tagged , | 14 Comments | 3818 reads

The following items I have for the May issue of the journal Midori written – and as always, appears here – with delay – the online edition. Have fun reading!

If you look at Japan and the inhabitants of the archipelago from far away to me or even for a short time from up close, not to mention Japan in the media, then one may quickly get an insight, Japanese women have not much to say but simply to fulfill their role as benevolent wife. However: Is that? Japan is a paradise for chauvinists, because between the devout members of the opposite sex to live out everything possible? And how Japanese women are in society today because?

A look at the language there is a taste: There are some words for wife – including the word 家 内 kanai (literally: “in-house”), Oku-san (oku = back, since women previously occupied homes in the more noble the back room) or 愚 妻 gusai (literally: “stupid wife”, a mid bore slightly outdated modesty form for the word “Wife”). Mothers do not just come off quite well: the character for ski Weger mother – Regardless of shūtome – consists of the two elements “Mrs.” and “old”. Well: The Chinese character for “well” consists of “Mrs.” and “Kind” (Good). But the characters are so well developed for thousands of years. And to his wife and child is also nothing wrong.

More frightening is the case of Japan, however, on the one hand the view of the media, particularly the advertising-based mass media, and to international statistics, such as the Gender Gap Index, created by the World Economic Forum. A propos: What do Azerbaijan, Madagascar, Indonesia and Zimbabwe together? It's simple: According to the above indicator, women in these countries more say in politics as in business and the fellow women in Japan. The index was 2009 for 134 Countries collected, and Japan has not even among the top 100. And in fact: In politics and in the higher levels of business, women are simply under-represented. So much so underrepresented, I am terrified every time, News from Germany when I see just from those areas: So many women!

What society expects of women in Japan? Everyone in Japan knows the concept of Yamato Nadeshiko, the ideal image of Japanese (Marriage)Mrs.. Als Kojima Akiko, Winner of the Miss World title 1959, was asked one day, whether they would now not want to be an actress, she replied, that they would prefer to be a loving wife – one 大 和 抚 子 yamato nadeshiko just. When I made several years ago at a German university, the first encounters with Japanese, I was just amazed – to the question, because what they want to do after the study so, answered most of the female respondents “Why get married, Children get – Just a housewife”. Those, who said, they want to do with the later times studied what, were in the minority.

For Foreigners, which for many years with, fighting for or against the emancipation, this may sound strange, and I have often bad opinions about Japanese women – mainly by foreign women – is. One has to look first, however,, why many Japanese women look with these ideas in the future: Subjecting them to the expectations of society as? Is pure resignation? Do the women in Japan much rather be in labor and politics, However, it does not even know yet? And why is that so disastrously low birth rate in Japan, if they do think so many more like family than career?

Now, firstly like to do that with the very important reasons for the family in East Asia, but it is not enough. Most people will probably think it, what will they blossom as a woman in Japan in the job as: Harassment by supervisors, lower salaries, countless overtime, little free time (and thus little opportunity, to search for the Prince Charming – as manifested certainly not in the vulgar, misogynistic boss, of the last couple of hair like a bar code across the crest and continues on every other evening very immoral gets drunk with his subjects. If you look at Japanese companies doing to, Although there are many women – but mostly in the role of the receptionist, in the administration or … in data entry.

With these prospects, it is not surprising, when many people are longing for a family – and the logic of the study, with which you will begin later anyway nothing, it should also be clear: a college degree, if possible at a good university, increases the chances of getting a well-educated, quite extraordinarily high earning spouse. But what the Japanese wife expecting so in family life? Is there really so submissive they, how many movies, Want to make books and believe the general impression from the outside?

The traditional career looks like: After the wedding the husband goes to his work as before, and still it is not uncommon, Faru that her husband rarely gets to see: From morning until late evening, most men are on the move, and a weekend for many a day long. Many women hear after the wedding, to work, to devote himself to the very purpose of marriage: One child or two or more and get the education and then devote the budget. In the education of many men hardly participate, because they are too often at home – and if they are at home, to break (or pretend, too broken to be). That is the most solid foundation of a relationship does not necessarily, One can imagine. In many households also is the wife responsible for the finances – want to be called, the salary is paid into the account of the wife and the latter paid through tough Vehandlungen abgerungenes pocket money – in good times and good conduct more, otherwise less. Somehow we must avoid even, that the hubby all the Pachinko squandered.

Sometimes places are often a considerable sum wife meanwhile penny to page – This nest egg will へそくり hesokuri called, usually kept secret and is intended for the case of cases. In which case, in particular, I leave to the reader's imagination. The heads of some? of several? according to traditional rules, of course managed companies know the plight of their employees – and have in some cases, to the wife over a smaller sum to the account of the men, so that they can get through together with naïve counterparts at drinking parties.

Until a few years, the divorce rate in Japan was surprisingly low, despite all the way. Not, distinctions that are frowned upon for religious reasons in Japan – the reason was more likely to, that many women, Today, the 60 Years old, have worked hard and so have no claim to pension. A divorce, especially in advanced age, meant to (depending on the size of the aforementioned nest egg) the descent into poverty. Some years ago, but finally decided, that divorced women are entitled to a portion of the pension of men, which also increased the distinctions: Understandable, if the husband, the first one barely got to face, suddenly goes into retirement and then abruptly hangs out every day at home.

However: Even in Japan, have things changed in this regard, more or less. There are more women working than before. Women seem to have become more confident, not few and small, Modern companies were founded by women. Many couples choose to 共働き tomobataraki (= Both work), what was certainly favored by the economically lean 1990s and the last two years. More fathers really care about their children. And more women emphasize career and get into – mostly young, modern business – higher and higher.

Compared to many other countries, but Japan is still propagated back a long way in terms of equality: Japanese women are still very difficult, in their professional lives to enforce or, and this is also important, Work and family to reconcile – the social barrier of this is very big. The course also does not prevent women from Japan, at home “to have the pants” – logical, Finally, they must indeed take care of household and education.

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International Partys oder – merry bridal show in Japan

April 27th, 2010 | Tagged , | 12 Comments | 1528 reads

So – for the following 10 or so days I will unfortunately have no time, much to write. The Golden Week begins tomorrow, and it stands to visit from Germany. After I sign up again but – certainly.

Here, however, a first article, I for the February edition of the Midori have written, and I would like to share with you. Have fun reading – and as always comments are very welcome!

——–

Saturday, evening at 19 Clock before any club in the heart of Tokyo in Roppongi: Outside the door, waiting for a mixed crowd of people, around your 100, in order to push past the bouncer and soon converted 30 To pay €, only to a so-called “International Party” to be allowed to participate. There are many remarkable women, including (99% aus Japan), Average age at the 30, and many foreigners – mostly men – from around the world.
30 To pay €, spend two or three hours to see many foreigners in a heap, should be a feature of Japan – I can hardly imagine, that this concept into other realms, special attention would make much less profit. Unlike in Japan: There are some companies, specializing either completely or partly out, prevent just such events. Also, my company organized, usually monthly, Such parties, but rather as a side business. And come to good events and good times even like to 300 Guests together, particularly, if so unjapanische occasions like Halloween or St. Patrick's Day is. What are all these people? Who pays that much money, apply only to a mixed crowd of foreigners? Have all the homeless?

Two explanations may help because at first glance: Japan is an island, or an elongated accumulation of thousands of islands. Behind Japan, ungeographisch times and spoke of the Euro-centric point of view, The world is at an end. Thousands of kilometers of water, then the date line and not more. Although Japan is not the end of the world, but pretty damn close. Second explanation: Japanese are open to the world. Japanese say about yourself anyway, But there is also something in it. Quite a few Japanese can recite better than Beethoven's Ninth, the citizens of the country of Beethoven.

However, it is not easy, To meet foreigners in Japan – at least compared with most European countries. The immigration rate was 2007 just about 1,7% (Good in Germany 8%), and that's a historical peak. 55% of them are either from China and Korea – Many of them have lived for generations in Japan. In Japanese, the way it divides quite naturally into Ajiajin (Asians), Kokujin (Black) und Hakujin (White). This is compounded by Nikkei-jin (Foreigners of Japanese descent, mostly from South America). Americans make up the largest proportion of non-Asians and non-Japanese ethnic – with 2,4% the total foreign population. Will hot, looking especially outside the capital, one must have a little, a “White” to find.

Let us face it: Who once the harsh Japanese labor- and want to escape moral world, must rise as Japanese in a plane. And who does not have the pleasure, to work for a foreign company or a university, besides those schools may be little opportunity, meet with foreigners.
Why now, however, much more Japanese women at the parties? For sure,de – not all come, because they are looking for a wife. But there are already some. It holds the persistent rumor is still propagated, that foreigners (or. Non-East Asians, more specifically) The pleasant life(in sections)partner to give up. The unconfirmed rumor is one because, for example, that foreigners carry their partners almost on hands, even help with household chores and treat their partners better. The only times I would so leave the room – especially Japanese men worry increasingly about the household and partner. The fact is, however,, for example, that divorced women 30 have bad problems in Japan, a new, to find Japanese partners. And, even unmarried women 30 have great difficulty, to find someone. In Japan, women 25 already sometimes as “Christmas Cake” (Christmas cake) designated – before 25. (December) they want to have any, and after the 25. (Birthday) no one.
However, it must be mentioned, that this phrase is an anachronism already: The average age of first marriage in Japan follows the same trend as in Germany – people are living longer, they dare to. Men were 2008 on average, already good 30, Women 28,5 Years old.

So now, what promise Japanese women, if they are in relevant locations in Japan Dating? The Japanese are a lot of women in terms of partner choice “Sandaka” (literally: Three cheers) mentioned “Virtues”: High educational attainment, high income, large body size. Alternatively, the expanded with a fourth condition – The candidate should not be the eldest son of the family, else who has the honor later, to care for his aging parents – and the relationship between mother and daughter in Japan is of prospective wives feared more than anything else together. One could (expected) Relationship between the butterfly and large, black spider compare.
Of course, one must also not lump all people with the same brush – there are enough women in Japan, do not care about such conventions. But the said term “Sandaka” is generally known, and if the prospective wife is not so much like care, but then with a relatively high probability of their parents.

Whether a foreign man necessarily the “Sandaka-Schema” corresponds, is an open question – there are enough foreigners – also from Europe and America – the economies in Japan at the poverty level, or just to muddle through somehow. In addition, the women also expect, to push for their own parents with great resistance, which is not the rule but, But quite often occurs. Then there is the language barrier as well as various cultural barriers: Initially, the moment is enough for many of the exotic, but occur in everyday life when suddenly unexpected cultural differences, quite a few relationships break. YOU will then be suddenly, that He has no interest, To learn more about their language and culture, He noted at some point and, that's oh so cute, little friend can be pretty surly, if something does not fit her (Many have no idea, as can be resolutely Japanese women).
For many couples, the disillusionment comes only later. For example, if the first child is born. In Japan it is common, that parents – for years – share with their children to bed. Quite often I've heard of bitter complaints about foreigners, report that they have since the birth of the child to absolutely nothing. Anyone who loves his children but, However, should think twice, whether he will really want to get divorced, because the chance, seeing his children again then never being able to, are quite large in Japan. This is ensured by a lack of laws and courts, The award generally the mother custody.

Yet – they exist, the happy couple, who live together peacefully for decades in more or larger harmony and fun at the culture of others. Couples with children, as so-called “Half” (“half”) be called – half foreigners, half Japanese. For whatever reason, these children are very popular in Japan, they will just kind of sweet or at least expected, they are sweet. Some have, however, with less prejudice by the beautiful teacher and classmates struggle to, they attend a normal school – However, this seems relatively rare to be the case.

It should at least be interesting to know, how many happy couples have found each other at parties, said International. And do not forget, that many guests are just here, to have fun or meet interesting people, which would otherwise make little. Finally, one meets there, men and women of every color, just the once nursed back to English (or even German) want to talk – or for reasons of good old memories of studying abroad here.
About Deutsch – There are also international parties with a German background, at least in Tokyo and also relatively frequently. It is these parties are more specific then certainly for example, Germans very popular in Japan. There they can learn that is very informal Japanese – because that is not always strictly in Japan simple.

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