Tagged: questions

The Same Old Questions

No matter how long you are in Japan, you will always be asked the same questions:

  • Where are you from?
  • Do you like Japanese food?
  • Can you use chopsticks?

The more adventurous Japanese will ask you questions about your home country:

  • Is summer as hot as in Japan?
  • Do you have cherry blossoms?
  • Do you speak English in England?

All these questions were recently asked of me by the dental assistant, just before I had my teeth drilled.

I can’t take it anymore!

I understand that because I’m a foreigner, people are interested in where I’m from and what I think of Japan. I am always courteous and answer politely, with a few well-practiced jokes included, but what I really want to say is…

Oh god! Here we go again! Leave me alone already! I don’t care where I’m from, so why do you? Of course I like Japanese food, what do you think I’ve been eating for the last decade? Can I use chopsticks? Yes, and I can spell my own name, too! Hot in summer? Al Gore says it is. Cherry blossoms? Now you’re getting desperate for conversation! English in England? Well, duh!

Now, I don’t mean to be rude, but it just never ends. I could be here when I’m 70 and still be asked the same things. At this stage of my life, I am really put off by these kinds of questions, despite the good intentions of the person asking.

What I’d like people to talk to me about

Normal things. Ask me if I watched that new drama, Hokaben, on Wednesday night. Talk to me about sport, politics, my favorite shopping mall… ask me about my family here and what it’s like being a dad. Ask me about my plans for Golden Week. Let’s chat about the new paper recycling rules, or what they are building by the golf course. Anything but chopsticks, natto, or a country I remember very little about.

Any of you feeling the same way?

Questions for JapanSoc Users #1

If you haven’t yet registered for the Japan-related social bookmarking website, JapanSoc, please sign up! This is a new community which is growing quite rapidly thanks to some wonderful support from my fellow “Japan” bloggers.

A few questions for JapanSoc users

Since I’m at the helm, I’d like to get some feedback from current JapanSoc users so I can go about making improvements. Here are some questions to consider, but please feel free to voice your opinions in the comments section.

  1. Was registration smooth?
  2. Is the FAQ okay, or am I missing anything important?
  3. Do you think all the categories hog the sidebar? Any suggestions?
  4. Is the site too slow? (This will be my biggest headache!)
  5. Have you experienced any technical glitches worth reporting?

Get your blog reviewed on LongCountdown

If you blog about Japan, here’s a deal for you. I will write a dedicated review of your blog here on LongCountdown.com if you do the following:

NOTE: This offer has now finished. 

  1. Register at JapanSoc.
  2. Add the JapanSoc FeedBurner FeedFlare to your blog feed.
  3. Link to JapanSoc (from either your blogroll or a blog post).
  4. Subscribe to this blog’s rss feed.
  5. Let me know you’ve done 1-4 in the comments.