Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Christmas in Japan

Shinto and Buddhism are the two major religions here in Japan, but I am seeing an awful lot of cheesy Santa's around here. The Japanese love American stuff and Santa sure didn't get left behind. I think they are pretty clueless about the holiday (just as Americans are clueless about theirs) but yet it is fully embraced. A couple of Christmas traditions here:

The Christmas cake. That's right. A big fluffy whipped cream cake topped with strawberries. Beautiful. Expensive. (and small.) I have heard that the Japanese are stunned to hear that most Americans probably don't have the fluffy cake. It's a Japanese thing.

KFC. Christmas Eve dinner. Get your order in early. At least 3 weeks before. People line up to pick up their dinners. I was wondering why there were so many KFC ads, lined with holly and tinsel. KFC cleans up here in Japan every year--I have got to figure a way to get this country to believe in some other wacky American tradition that I can get in on. Anybody have any thoughts? Wow, when something catches on, it goes ballistic!

Christmas Eve is considered a romantic holiday so I understand. Mostly for young couples to be out together, showing the world they have somebody special. Girls, if you don't have a man for the Christmas Eve KFC, go home, go to bed, and don't bother celebrating anything. Santa comes to Kevie's classroom

That's him, back row left, lost tie.

Making Christmas crafts

Ira and I occasionally discuss how to make money over here. Something very simple.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I will think about it. Meanwhile here are some ideas.


4:21 PM  
Blogger Ben Kilpela said...

Nice post with a couple of interesting surprises. Kev's class is on my background for a few days now. Here's an idea: Maybe put the reindeer thing to use somehow, a Finnish-Japanese connection. Get some imitation reindeer hide brooches or scarves of some such hideous thing. Say that receiving this as a gift and wearing it is a way of bringing good fortune into your life each year. It's got to be good for one year only. Why didn't you get yours for next year? You think it's gonna last longer than one year. Not so. Planned obsolescence built right in. I'll try to keep thinking of more.


12:15 PM  

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