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Born in Stockholm (Sweden), now live in Sapporo (Japan). Hold a Ph.D. in computer science and work with computers during the days, perform magic in a bar during the nights (and weekends, for kids). Also used to teach historical fencing back in Sweden.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Japanese society and all these puns...

Who wouldn't put a life sized giraffe doll in the lobby?

In Japan, puns as jokes have very low standing. No one thinks they are funny (not true, but officially no one would ever admit to finding puns funny).

On the other hand, lots of things are pun based in daily life. The New Year celebration has a big pun based component in the "osechi ryouri", traditional New Year food. You have beans that make you a serious person because bean is called "mame" and being serious is also called "mame", though the Chinese character used are different. All the dishes are like that.

A giraffe doll to increase the likelihood of long relationships with customers.

We had a work related dinner with a guest professor last week, and the hotel lobby for some reason had a life sized giraffe doll. When asking the lobby staff why they had a giraffe in the lobby, they said (roughly translated) that they wanted long relationships with their customers so a giraffe, who's main attribute is [to have a] long [neck], is like praying for that.

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