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Modern and Traditional Japanese Culture: The Psychology of Buddhism, Power Rangers, Masked Rider, Manga, Anime and Shinto. 在日イギリス人男性による日本文化論.

Friday, October 05, 2012


Dangerous Water Channel

Dangerous Water Channel by timtak
Dangerous Water Channel, a photo by timtak on Flickr.
As someone pointed out (B?) there are a lot of dangerous water channels in Japan with low or non-existent guard rails, in streets with no street lighting. This channel has no railings in some areas despite being 2 metres deep.

This level of physical danger exists in spite of the fact that saftey from attack is not only non-existent, but there are emergency "I am being attacked" alarm/phone stations every 50 yards along the main street coming from university. Danger caused by others is treated by with great concern, but danger due to personal "negligence" (such as not looking where you are treading) gets short shrift. Who said that Japanese do not allow their populace to do things at their own risk (jiko-sekinin de)? Having said that, I think that this difference is more to do with the prevalence of irrigation channels in this rice farming nation rather than any difference in perceptions of personal safety.

A foreign student at Yamaguchi broke their arm falling into one of these channels. A foreign visitor found a dead Japanese man in one of these channels on a Sunday morning. Those under the influence of alcohol are particularly at risk. Visitors to Japan beware. But also bear in mind that in late May the channels, or this one in Itoyone, are populated by fireflies.

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This blog represents the opinions of the author, Timothy Takemoto, and not the opinions of his employer.