It’s fun to analyze the various tropes that are perpetuated in anime, like the rich blonde girl with an aristocratic laugh, or a character running to school with a slice of toast in their mouth, or the hallowed onsen episode when the characters will take a bath together for some reason. Some of these running gags might not be 100% accurate, such as the “skirt type” school swimsuits (the kind with the horizontal line across the bottom), which, sad to say, were replaced by more modern designs a decade or more ago, and only exist in otaku and cosplay subculture now. But some common anime tropes are surprisingly accurate, such as the staple of fanservice shows, shintai sokutei or annual body measurement, which is an actual thing everyone does in school: lining up to get a general health check-up including having your body weighed and measured, though presumably without the humor of a fanservice episode.
I write a lot about how the Japanese are hardworking, and running J-List alongside our staff of 9 Japanese (plus employees from the U.S., France and the Philippines) is a real joy because everyone is so diligent. Three days ago a giant sinkhole opened in the center of bustling Hakata, a ward in the city of Fukuoka known for its white-broth ramen, in Japan’s southernmost island of Kyushu. In record time, Japan’s busy-as-bees construction companies got the hole refilled and will have everything back to normal soon. One aspect of Japan’s economy is that it’s largely driven by construction, sort of in the same was that the defense industry is a big part of the U.S., and the economy largely rises and falls based on how many houses and roads are built every year.
Today, November 11, has been designated by the Ezaki Glico company as International Pocky and Pretz Day, since 11/11 looks like four Pocky sticks lined up, ready to be eaten. To help celebrate all Japanese snacks including Pocky and Pretz, Japanese Kit Kat and more, we’re having a big sale this weekend on all Japanese snacks. Get $5 off any snack order of $20 or more using code SNACK5OFF!