Last autumn there was a good drama on TV called Abarenbo Mama. One of the key storylines was how the young stepmother, Ayu, would get along with the other mothers at her son’s kindergarten. Although it was a comedy, “mama groups” really do exist in Japan, and mothers go out of the way to fit into these groups.
That means they have to share the same interests, opinions, fashion sense, attitude to their husbands, goals for their children, and anything else required to keep the status quo.
Got a small child? Get a big car!
Over the last few years, one of the more eye-catching similarities between mothers of young children is their need for a big car. They are supposed to be family sized, but I’m sure you could get half a sumo stable in these so-called “mini” vans.
It’s not the best photo, but you can see how the mothers at my local kindergarten all have 5-door hatchbacks off a grayscale palette.
I really don’t understand why small children need such large cars? These days it’s rare for a family to have more than two children, but even our little pink ‘n’ gay Lapin is big enough for two adults, two children and a push chair.
Maybe it’s a case of keepin’ up with Joneses, but it could also have something to do with the culture of husbands giving their monthly paychecks to their wives, and getting some pocket money in return. Perhaps these mamas have bought themselves big “mini” vans, while they let their husbands drive around in one of these: