Monday, April 2, 2012

Weird & Amusing Japanese Signs

Left: Sign in Nara about the rather tame yet wild deer that roam the park.
"The deer of Nara Park are wild animals. They can occasionally attack people. so please be careful."

Knock - down

I've been personally molested by deer* on numerous visits to Nara.

Right:  Sign in vinyl sheet protector
taped to column on underground subway platform.

Beware of drunk salaryman
Drunk salaryman beware of oncoming subway train!

"Danger! After drinking many people fall off the platform on to the tracks. Please Beware !

One upsetting result of relying on public transportation is the very rare but occasional prolonged delay of the usually hyper-timely
Japanese trains due to "human accident".
No wonder I never see children playing in this park near our  home!
"Perverts exist! Please be careful!"
Beware of bamboo shoot thieves!
This shady character is wearing dark glasses and sports some stubble and an armful of ill-gotten bamboo shoots.
This sign is in the bamboo grove behind our apartment building.
Living in Japan definitely has many advantages:

Unparalleled customer service.

No tipping (staff are usually paid a relatively low, but fair, working wage for service jobs, perhaps starting in the range of US $8 - $10 per hr.).

Kids can walk or ride buses or trains to school alone without threat of fear.

No guns.

Low crime.

If you live in the city you don't need a car or the accompanying expenses.

Reasonable healthcare (even if I was unemployed I would be totally covered for 500Yen a month (about $5).

If you are having a baby, our city in Osaka pays you 420,000Yen (about $4,500.00)!

When Mia goes to hospital for delivery* in October she will stay for 5 days, receive a treatment from an esthetician, and dine on healthy 5 star French cuisine (another birthing clinic we checked out offers a limo ride to & from the clinic!).
*Our total fee from this birth will be about (estimated) US $5,000.00, which that money from the city will reduce to about $500. Also includes mother's training & exercise classes!

I can make a decent living teaching English privately.

The Yen is high now (great for when I went shopping in Florida last Xmas - New Years season;
...not so great if you want to visit here from abroad).

BUT, one more remarkable phenomena I wish to share with you about fairy tale Japan is it's signage!
Perhaps no where else in the world will you see such a profuse display of municipal and government spending on signs that warn against, encourage, and alert you to all sorts of behavior and phenomena.

(By the way.... Buses, escalators, subways, and public buildings (like libraries!) also stream a constant barrage of audio warnings, announcements & notices ad nauseam.)

So, here are some of my personal faves from around our lovely neighborhood of Toyonaka in Osaka.

Chikan Chui! Beware of Perverts!

Children's play park in Sakarazuka

Hmm, Haiku posted on a park fence. But this is not classic poetry...

Translation: "No excuse for 'I just wanted to try shoplifting one time'".

"Politeness bridges heart to heart contact"

On Left: "Can you clearly express your thoughts?"
On Right: the shoplifting message... AGAIN!

BEWARE! Don't accept rides from strangers!

A fresh, new "Beware of Perverts" sign... AGAIN! A little further from the first.
This may not be such a bad idea as Mia remembers a flasher standing outside her elementary school
at recess time. She says some kids were shocked but most pointed and laughed.

"Hey Bully! Your heart is crying!" (?!)

Self explanatory I think.

Don't litter!

In front of a shrine: Warning to drivers and kids about suddenly running into the street. 

ENGLISH! On the side of a 100Yen ($1) drink vending machine

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