Jul 31, 2013

NO, hot water is not used for laundry in Japan

I am deeply sorry to the person who made this comment, but I get comments like this all the time.

Someone will claim they seen something in Japan, and everyone does it, even though it is completely not true, doesn't go with Japanese culture or what exists here AT ALL.

If this information in this comment happens TO be true, then it is absolutely freakish case, most strangest thing in the history of Japan to ever happen.

If you don't already know, in Japan lot of people hang clothes outside to dry. In the winter too. Why? Why pay for electricity and use a dryer when you can use the sun?
The sun is free and its part of their culture. Just because they have the technology to dry it in a dryer, doesn't mean most people are interested in wasting power when its free outside. It has always been that way, even after the invention of electric driers you will still see all year round clothes hung outside.

Saving power isn't the only reason I have heard Japanese people say they dry it outside. Many Japanese people ask me when I tell them that we use machines in Canada.

'Doesn't it become wrinkled?'

'How do you prevent wrinkles'

'Doesn't it shrink?'

'Doesn't it get bigger?'

If you walk down the streets around Japan, any sunny day you will see laundry hung outside. You will also see futon hung outside. Japanese people hang their beds outside to get rid of the bugs and stink that happens to form on your bed while you sleep.

On rainy days, the laundry is hung inside their house.

You might ask, why would Japanese hang clothes outside in the winter? Well in most parts of Japan, winter doesn't get a lot of snow, or even any snow at all. In Tokyo clothes are still hung outside during the day in the winter, and inside during the time where the sun is not gone. This couldn't happen in Canada in the winter, because the clothes would not dry but instead turn to ice. lol.

In northern parts of Japan, it snows a lot in the winter, so a lot more people just hang them inside to dry.

Inside Japanese bathrooms there is a pole, similar to a shower curtain pole in the west. However in Japan its not actually supposed to be used for shower curtain, but for hanging laundry. They also have a powerful dry fan above the bath that will dry your clothes on a rainy day or a winter day.

This is the only normal alternative method to hanging the clothes outside in Japan.

Now, This doesn't mean that some people don't have dryers. Some people do, especially people who live in the northern parts of Japan. Its just VERY uncommon. It may even be suprising for those coming from a country where people don't dry clothes outside. 

Real western dryers in Japan exist, and are mostly only used by companies. Most normal washers don't have a drying function, and some only have a partial dry function that just leaves the clothes moist. I can't tell you guys much about how dryers work in Japan, because I haven't found anyone who owns one yet.

Second. Hot water in Japan is not used for washers. In fact, there is only one tube attached to the back of the washer that pumps in cold water only. This is because hot water costs more money to make, thus saving energy. Japanese love saving energy and its certianly more shamed in Japan to waste than it is in Canada.  This is just something they don't have an option for, and don't even complain about.

In order to use hot water, you must pump the water from your OFURO (Japanese bath). Japanese people don't like to waste water so some times you will see people use the old ofuro water, and put it in the washing machine and use it to wash a load of clothes. Some machines have a pump attached that you can put in the ofuro and actually pump it directly into the machine. Others have to manually go back and forth with a bucket (pain in the ass).

Time for the ran and crazy comment I got today.

'''No hot water and no dryer? You know that's not true. With Money anything is possible. Even for Japan developed standards! Your generalizing too much!'''

My reply:  '''You don't even live in Japan, and you never been here. Just because technology exists doesn't mean we use it. The ONLY pipe that comes into a washer in a house is cold water, no hot. Dryers exist, but people don't use them. People dry their clothes outside, that is considered normal.'''

'''No.....I have been to Japan and I seen people use hot water and have a dryer to do the laundry. Of course, my friends did remodel their plumbing, but they do have hot water and a dryer. we have to clarify this because you said that the Japanese don't use dryers and hot water. For a 1st world nation and 2nd in GDP to America, you do have some people in the country of 126M+ that use hot water and dryers.I assume you meant "The Majority" not "all".    '''

I am sorry. I don't mean to hurt you. But wtf.

I will start with the first world country crap. Just because Japanese people hang clothing outside, doesn't mean they do it because of lack of technology. I find it really insulting to those cultures that do things differently that is seen as 'third world'. It is not third world to be using the suns energy for a good purpose.

I understand their thinking way now, why use a dryer? The sun is right there. Its free. Why waste energy?  I have got used to drying my clothes outside where I feel like its much better to do than in a machine. Its free, I don't know how you can have a deal that beats free. It takes me only 5 mins extra to hang up.

Anyways, the part where this post this commenter upsets me is,

WHY in HELL. Would any Japanese person go through the stress of modifying their house to have hot water attached to their washer?  That is as insane as a person in Canada, going through the modification to have a special washer built that has boiling water, instead of warm or hot water. But a extra one for mad boiling water (which isn't even used in Canada).  Its something people don't use for their normal day, so why would the Japanese invent some thing like a hot water pipe for the washer??.

In all Japanese houses, there is no option, its just always cold. To add a extra pipe, of course is possible, but who would think of doing this?? This is western thinking because we are used to options. In Japan, they just DON'T USE IT!. To do a reno ALL for that?? I don't understand what kind of family would go thought the touble to modify their house so that two pipes stick out. Which is why I feel like this person is just making up information as they go along.

Even if they wern't making this up, it still doesn't mean every Japanese person is renovating their houses so that all the houses can have a hot water and a cold water pipe. Doesn't change the fact that most Japanese people hang their clothes outside to dry, and wash in cold water.

Renovations are expensive. To rip up a house, install a pump that pumps also hot water would be out of this world, at least, in the world of Japan.

Jul 26, 2013

The nut job student

Heres a short story of the days where I used to teach English as a private tutor.

One time I was meeting a student for the first time. Before he emailed me asking where to meet and I specifically said, Starbucks.

He said 'sorry I don't like it, too shy to speak English there'.

I said, too bad I only teach at cafe, Its too dangerous to go anywhere else. At first I thought he was one of those sick freaks who was going to sugest we go to a hotel (sometimes you get asked). I told him I will only go to starbucks and he finnaly agreed on it.

When he gets to starbucks, I say
'ok lets go inside'. But suddenly he says again 'sorry I don't like Starbucks its too shy'.

'fine, where do you want to go??'

We went to some VERY expensive tea place across the street. The most expensive tea I had in my life  Ready for the price?  20$ for a cup.

It was mad fancy place for rich people. The inside of the place was so fancy, there was a live piano player. Wow.


I noticed right away that I didn't like this student. He had a attitude to him that was unfriendly and kind of idiotic. His personality was something I can't even explain, there was so many rude things he did but here is a few.

We had two menus on the table that the waiter gave me and him to look at, and he TOOK MINE, out of my hand while I was trying to read it, and put it near him and said 'you can't read Japanese'.

And thats when I knew I had a idiot customer.

Oh it gets worse.

He would imitate everything I said with a cocky way and it really got on my nerves.

He asked if I could speak Japanese and I said yes. And he said Really?   Then he asked me to say something. I asked him in Japanese 'what do you want me to say?' and he laughed.

Then I asked in Japanese, what is funny?

And he said 'you are speaking Japanese.....and you are  a foringer'

I just looked at him with a plain face, nothing is funny, this guy is just a idiot.

I couldn't wait for the lesson to be over, I almost wanted to get up and leave. I wanted to freak out and defend myself telling him his behavior was unacceptable and I wont continue this anymore, but I stood my grounds.

Everytime I tryed to ask a question, he would cut my off making stupid noises or repeating English words and laughing, like he was doing it to piss me off.

Anyways, the most crazy shit of the day was when we started talking about my pets. I told him I used to have over 20 pets in my life. He was so surprised and heres how the conversation went.

'wow?!?!?! Where are they all now?'

'well, they are all dead now'

'WHAT!!!?   Why? hahahha! Why teacher? '

' well these pets don't live forever, so they are all dead now, this was over a long time'

'did you kill them?? hahaha'


'what happens if you have a baby??'


'will you kill your baby too?'

After that I didn't respond to him, I can't even remember how the rest of the lesson went.

I never contacted that student again.

Jul 18, 2013

6 am in KABUKICHO Yakuza?

In Tokyo there is a area called KABUKICHO

It is located in Shinjuku, and at once point in time it was the most dangerous part of Japan (maybe still is?) Now Japan is not a very dangerous country to begin with so compared to the scary things that happened in Canada, this is nothing.

However, being in Japan for 2 years you get used to being safe. When you run into the slightest bit of danger, it feels like you are really going to die.

So I was at the club with D-chan, clubs in Japan run all night BTW. I mean, till morning!
In Canada they stop at 2am. Japanese people usually laugh at Canada for being that way. Anyways.

So after the club usually we go and eat or find somewhere to hang out. For some reason we ended up in Kabukicho, unknowingly. Two guys took us there, we were looking for some food but couldn't find any.

Anyways, in the morning in Tokyo, any club district you can always find the drunks and the crazies, so seeing this is nothing new.

Out of nowhere, a very scary looking drunk guy came out of a store on his cell phone. He had long hair, many tattoos (which are considered scary in Japan) and he looked very strong. He was talking on cell phone but he was drunk and couldn't walk.

He stumbled and fell onto the ground and rolled around.

D-chan , at that moment without thinking at all, said out loud in Japanese

写真とりたい shashin toritai  -  I want to take a picture

Of course him being Japanese, he heard, got up and got mad angry.

He went right up to her and screamed at her

写真とるな!shashin toru na! - Don't fkin take my picture!

He was right up in her face like he was gonna kill her. I kept saying sorry to him in Japanese pleading to just leave us alone and that she couldn't speak Japanese. I couldn't stop bowing and begging for forgiveness.

He then grabbed the Japanese guys we were with around the neck and tried to make them punch him so a fight would happen, but the guys we were with didn't want to fight so they slowly walked out of it.

And just like that, we escaped slowly by walking away.
I thought I was going to die!
I though he was going to pull out a gun and kill us all (opps there goes my Canadian panic thinking).

Anyways, moral of the story here is, THINK BEFORE YOU SPEAK!

Jul 14, 2013


Sorry its been a long time I wrote a blog. I have been lazy busy with videos.

From now on I will write about all strange, interesting, funny etc experiences that happen to me.

Starting with this one, it happened actually 4 months ago.

I went to ASAKUSA alone (because I am a loner)

I went to film videos for you guys :)

I usually don't go places alone because I feel its strange to be alone. With nobody to talk to I feel like someone who doesn't have any friends. I always want to laugh or talk to people I am around, so if no one is there, theres nothing I can do except think to myself, about how lonely I am.

Anyways, I grabbed some food (yummy food). I grabbed a chocolate banana. In Japan at festivals they have these bananas on a stick covered in chocolate! AWESOME!

I sat down in front of the place that was selling the food, sat on a little rock and watched the people walk by as I ate it. Watching all the people who had friends they came with lol.

Suddenly out of nowhere a old man, very short, wearing a grey suit approached me. He racially didn't look Japanese (but I am not sure). He slowly creeped up beside me, I knew he was going to talk.

Brace yourself, the next part of this sounds SOOO MADE UP! but it is 100% true story.

OLD MAN : Are you alone?

ME:  ???  *pretends not to speak English*

OLD MAN : 1人ですか? hitori desu ka? - are you alone?

ME: 私友達を待っている tomodachi o matteiru - I'm waiting for my friends

OLD MAN: 時間ある?jikan aru? - do you have time?

ME: 何?nani?  - What?

The whole time he was talking he was whispering very quietly so that nobody else heard him.

OLD MAN: 僕カメラ持っているね、近くのホテルがあって、よかったら動画をとりに
一緒に行きたい boku kamera motteiru ne, chikaku no hoteru ga atte, yokattara douga o tori ni issho ni ikitai - I have a camera, and I am staying at a nearby hotel. I am looking for someone to make a movie with

As if right? As if this happens to me in the bright of day, in asakusa, a tourist spot where people are supposed to enjoy a lovely day in the park watching the temple and eating some chocolate bananas!!
Why must creeps come in such a way?!

ME: いや、大丈夫です -iya daijoubu desu -  umm! no, I am ok!  *gets up and starts walking away from the man*

I went to get someone who was in charge of one of the stores to tell them a creepy man was there. As I was walking away he whispered,

OLD MAN: 可愛いなーデートしたいなーと思った kawaii naa deeto shitai naa to omotta  - You are cute! I want to go on a date with you!

I quickly went to the people at the store, and turned around and he was running away because he knew I went to get someone in charge.

I should have took his picture, what a creep eh!