Tuesday, August 15, 2006

That Hezbollah chick was SMOKIN...

Cripes in a sidecar. That's all I can say about this.

I don't really have a problem with adults running around and acting like assholes, because it's what we do best as adults. I do have a problem when they involve their kids. What kind of sick fuck would have their child come to a rally and sing:

"Hey hey.
Ho ho.
We support the PLO."


"Red white green and white
We support Hezbollah's fight!"

The little kids can barely even get "Hezbollah" out without stammering. And what's going on with "Red white green and white"? It's kind've hard to have a convincing message when what you're saying sounds completely retarded.

I wonder how the pre-protest briefing went at home.

"Ok Sarah, do you understand what you're supposed to chant?"
"Sounds like someone doesn't want any ice cream....."

Yeah, liberalism is way better. It's much better to have your kids out protesting and running pickets than the stupid traditional way, which is to let your kids be children. Yeah, and I'm the brainwashed one. Yut yut. Also, how can you support someone's fight at a peace protest? Can you be selectively pacifistic? Furthermore, if you find yourself at a protest, don't you think you should get your ideas together in case someone who doesn't agree with you asks you about it and puts you on camera? "Study, you are so young" is a wonderful answer. You look like a condescending, ignorant asshole. And Hugo Chavez as an Arab Leader? Are you out of your fucking mind??! I guess it's easy to spew bullshit when there's no one there to hold you accountable for whatever nonsense you're saying.

...and I'm sure someone has said something to the effect of:

Um... OK, check it out.

For all the lip service I pay about being a "raging card carrying atheist," I will never say that Churches serve no function in a community. And given these two options:

a) Supporting the PLO's and/or Hezbollah's fight (i,e. launching rockets into Haifa)
b) Supporting a Church and its community groups/social functions

....imma pick number b, bitches, even though I don't believe in what they believe. .

...But this is Adventurepan goddammit, and we need to bring things around to the subject at hand. I'm tired of these bullshit posts, and you should be too. So here goes.

People wonder why I like Japan. I like Japan, but even when I wasn't working in Japan, I was working somewhere else outside the USA. I don't want to live in the USA. I love the USA, I just don't want to live there. I look at these protests and think about the odds of having to actually encounter some of these people in real life, and it turns my stomach. A lot of people, me included, bash the Japanese for being heiwa boke, which kinda translates as something like "Peace dumb." They've experienced nothing but an easy peace with most of their defense handled by someone else since the war, and they don't really learn about WWII in history class. Ask a Japanese person about Hezbollah and see and see what they say. Probably nothing. Ask an American about Hezbollah, and you'll probably get a stream of bullshit on one side or the other, each respectively uninformed, and each delivered with a certain ignorant fervor that we're so well known for. I prefer the former. I don't sit there and spew bullshit one way or the other to anyone who will listen, and Japanese people refrain in much the same manner. Everyone's a winner.

And why else do I like Japan?

Well, the signs, of course.

That's right!!!! Remember this sign??

I was unaware that it was just one of many signs like it, each with an equally ridiculous picture. There seems to be a whole series of these signs, and I will attempt to find as many as I can. So I've come up with a little game. I'm going to show you the diagram on each sign, then I'm going to show you the full sign. Or something like that. I hope you get as much a kick out of them as I did.

I'd like you all to imagine, if you would, if you saw these signs with no translations on them at all. Just the Japanese, which would most likely be meaningless to you, so I'll show you just the little pictures they have underneath the signs. Do you think you would be able to figure it out? For instance, consider the original one I posted, if you had just seen this:

What the hell does that mean?

OK, moving along.

Item Number 1:

Apparently "tossing away" a cigarette is the same as "tossing away" Japan. It's right there. One equals the other. Of all the social problems Japan has, clearly the one that is best equated with Japan going down the toilet is people throwing away cigarette butts. Not human trafficking. Not a plummeting birth rate. Not lack of public trashcans for that matter. It's cigarette butts.

Here's the original sign:

Item Number 2:

This isn't a bad analogy, if you make it work. Umbrellas keep away rain much like portable ashtrays keep away cigarette butts. To understand this one properly, you must understand the Japanese attitude towards rain. Japanese people treat the slightest droplets as if there were a full on chemical-biological attack going on. Back me up here, Brando -- he witnessed a man sprinting down the street covering his forehead with a 3-inch by 3-inch hanky. People honestly freak out. Here's the real sign:

It's a little small, so I'll write it out:
Portable ashtrays, they're so handy. I always think that when I'm searching for a place to get rid of my cigarette butt.

Hmm, I think that too. I think of umbrellas too, when I'm searching for a place to get rid of my rain shower.

Item Number 3:

I guess one of the many hardships of being a human is skeeter bites, UV rays, and aggressive cigarettes, not necessarily in that order.

Here's the original:

One thing that I want to emphasize here is that these signs do not qualify as "Engrish". While they seem a little bit unnatural, they are grammatically sound, and they're the best translations of the Japanese written above it. I can almost guarantee you that a native speaker checked these, and were instructed to keep them as true to the original as possible. They seem unnatural not because a Japanese person with a 3rd grade English ability translated, but because that's how Japanese people talk. Say it aloud, like a samurai might.

In Summertime...The arms that pass by my cigarette....Are bare....

Almost sounds like a haiku, don'it? In fact, let's Haikuize it:
During Summertime
Arms passing by cigarettes
Are frightfully bare.

or maybe:

I hate the sun and
I hate mosquitoes too but
Ciggies? Just as bad...

I like my haikus better. I wonder what they will do during wintertime, when people are wearing jackets? And the skeeters are dormant?

While I make fun of these signs, I mainly get a kick out of them because they're kind've cute. They might be on to something though, given the failure of the "Smoking Kills" anti-smoking campaign. They are, however, a good example of the type of "marketing" that would work in Japan but wouldn't work in the USA. Clearly these signs are appealing to the well being of others, the country, and people's disdain for precipitation. These would all be lost on Americans because, well, we don't really give a shit about someone we don't know, and fuck the environment anyway. The Japanese signs aren't really even asking people stop smoking per se, they're telling them to smoke in designated areas, which is a little more realistic than the USA, which feels that it's important to pass legislation limiting people's access to smoking/places to smoke.

So rock on Japan, I love you and your cute little signs kindly requesting people not to torch children in the face with cigarettes, and equating tossing butts to flushing Japan down the toilet. I'm always a sucker for the dramatic, especially dramatic public campaigns. *sniff*


Blogger brando said...

Most of the stuff was just mildly weird, but I wanted it to be different, because I was on vacation, damnit.

I mostly just wanted to find food to jam in my youzer hole.

The rain thing was sort of weird in Japan. It's the exact oppisite in Scotland, where it rains almost everyday, and people don't even bother with umbrellas unless there is a downpour.

I think that I got a kick out of people dressed up like police for no reason (cosplay), and the guy shadowboxing in a store window in She-boo-ya. And the clown girls. I thought they were actually performing in a show. Is Cats in town?

As polite as people are in Japan, there's just no getting around the fact that there are hoards of them.

Pretty please with sugar on top, don't burn out children's eyes with your cigerates. Kay?

1:52 PM  
Anonymous Tony said...

Michelle Malkin is hot but she strikes me as an incredible bitch... I think incredible bitches are sexy.

Paul, liberals don't bring their kids to a protest, fucking idiots do. Fucking idiots come in all shapes and sizes.

I do however want to defend the "study you are so young guy". We don't really know what that guy was even saying. All we really see in the clip is the interviewer asking him questions and then before he can say anything the interviewer puts words in his mouth that the guy denies. Clearly this interviewer has no interest in his point of view. This man knew there was no point in trying to present a logical arguement whether he had one or not. Now I don't know that guy he could have been a complete asshole or a terrorist himself but I certainly can't blame him for immediately realizing that there was no dialog being opened. That whole video was a great example trying to argue that someone else is wrong rather than exploring what others may have to contribute to an issue by opening a discussion.

I think this is the biggest problem with issues like the war in this country. Let's start with the idea that everyone agrees with, we don't want to have to be at war but we don't want to deal with terrorism anymore. That seems pretty fair. Now instead of working so hard to make the other side look more wrong let's try to settle on the best way to make that happen. See that's some shit you'll never hear a politician say because it just doesn't get you votes. It also doesn't sell news.

More to the point, the Japanese smoking signs fucking rule. I want to get T-shirts made with those signs on them. I'm going to see about recreating them in Illustrator. I especially like the one about burning children's faces.

3:33 PM  
Anonymous Tony said...

Sorry, just reread my post and thought I should clarify one thing. Although it doesn't sound like it I was trying to agree with you mostly about your assessment of the protest. I just wanted to defend that one guy and point out that people who involve their kids in that kind of stuff are generally dumbasses.

3:36 PM  
Blogger Paul said...

since when do debaters give a shit about the other person's point of view? you're right about that stuff tho... i cant really say that liberals are alone in widespread assholery..it just seems that they often have higher degrees of education and a loud voice to somehow justify their position (in their own mind).. and the guy on camera was doing the "rapid-fire-question-thing-then-act-triumphant-when-the-other-person-cant-answer-because-um-you-didnt-fucking-let-them-answer-jackweed" thing that i adore so much. i also like it when people talk over each other. i find the shows on CNN and FOX where there are 4 people talking at the same time SAYING...THINGS...VERY....FORCEFULLY....AND...OR....THE...SAME....THING....OVER...AND...OVER...AGAIN.... really quite informing. yelling the same thing over and over again preventing the person from responding is a good way to get to the root of the issue. and one thing's for certain: i definitely dont make an angry face and change the fucking channel, cuz i love that stuff.

and yeah, i bet michelle malkin was a real pain in the ass in elementary school. but i get a kick out of how she makes shit out of people by basically letting them talk. sure, she adds her own stuff in there a lot, but there was the one interview she was doing at a sheehan rally that was hysterical. "So... you're dressing up like gitmo prisoners...so you can see what it's like in their shoes? is that sandwich good?"

also, if you'd like i can bring my real digital camera with me and take pictures of those signs sometime and email them to u. i took the pics on the blog with my cameraphone.

3:54 PM  
Blogger David said...

These Japanese signs are weird. Maybe you've heard of it but in the Union all tobacco manufacturers are forced to stick a sign that covers approximately one third of the front on a cig. package. On the sign there's things to read like "Smokers will die a slow and painful death". They even plan to put pictures of a smoker's lungs on it.

5:46 PM  
Blogger Jinxy said...

If you look at it the right way, that portable ashtray thingie kinda looks like a flamethrower.

10:22 PM  
Blogger ato said...

Jezus Christ, dude..

My grandmother thought I was going crazy..One minute I'm quietly studying my Japanese and listening to my headphones...then I was like.."I wonder what's going on at Adventurepan"..

I almost died laughing with the sign shit.

It's good to see that there's someone over there having a good laugh at what they think is funny instead of bending over ass-backwards trying to be polite and sensitive about everything..
Not that being polite, respectful and sensitive is bad, I just know there's assholes like me who will be there in a month, see something and not be able to help falling over and laughing hysterically until tears come to my eyes.
Whatever..everyone will just be thinking 'crazy gaijin' anyway..

keep the grandma's on their toes..

9:09 AM  
Blogger Hoss said...

If you want to get a good picture of the freakshow that is the anti-war left in America check out....http://www.zombietime.com/

Oh, and anytime someone starts trying to talk over you, or resorts to name-calling, you know you've won the debate.

And I like how Michelle lets people fuck themselves with their own words.

10:15 AM  
Blogger brando said...

What's a mock exercise?

I guess that's sort of a pretend rehersal.

12:51 PM  
Blogger Paul said...

holy shit hoss. those are awesome pictures. no captions needed. i like the "Zionist Coup de'tah." hahahaha.. i found a lot of spelling errors on some of the signs -- you'd think theyd run it thru MS Word before putting it up, but maybe microsoft is a zionist corporation with a zionist spell checker. and we hates them.

i think what bothers me the most about a lot of these protests is the sheer unoriginality of what they say. "hmm, i cant think of a good one today, so i'm just call call everyone a nazi and throw up the old sieg heil. that'll show em." or the old one-two punch i noticed, calling them "kike nazis". rudeness and offensiveness aside, that's just retarded. (that reminds me of when i was in austria with a coworker of mine who had a big mouth, and he announced in a loud voice to me on the train that the "workers at the airport acting like a bunch of nazis." "hey, check it out!" i said, "we're in austria and everyone just understood you.")

brando: i think a "mock exercise" is when iraq soldiers attempt to do an exercise, but end up making a mockery of themselves and the military profession.

abolishingtheold: im glad you're not all caught up in the "walking around in a yukata and using ridiculous honorifics to everyone you meet" bullshit. gaijin that try to act more japanese than japanese do are kind've annoying. imagine a japanese person cruising around in pilgrim's clothing asking, "ekkusukyuuzu mi---, weya-- izzu zaaa neaessuto ko-na-ko-pi-a??" (that means "excuse me, where is the nearest cornacopia?" in janglish.) it's possible to go to a foreign country and be yourself without being offensive (assuming that "yourself" isnt an offensive person.) im culturally sensitive in that i dont run around and tell people how they need to be acting and i dont insult things that are different (to people it would offend), but im not gonna sit here and pretend like im becoming japanese or some shit. it's impossible, and even if i did become a bonafide nihonjin with a passprot and everything, that doesnt mean im japanee to them, and to expect them to think so is ethnocentric. how can a white person who becomes a japanese citizen sit there and get all pissy when someone asks them if they can use chopsticks, and in the same breath demand to be acknowledged as a japanese person?? being a citizen of japan and being "japanese" are two different things, suckahz.

whoops, minirant.

1:43 PM  
Blogger bucket said...

It is hardly liberal to make by hand, but perhaps there is an online shop, children sized Jihadi clothes.

I sometimes browse zombie's image archives but I have yet to actually encounter these people in my real life. I think you have to actively pursue them.
But in all fairness the questioner of the Che ethnic redefiner was as much a moron and had pretty lousy rebuttals, hardly a challenging confrontation.

1:50 PM  
Blogger brando said...

"making a mockery of themselves and the military profession"

I've been saying that phrase in my head over and over. It never gets old.

10:24 AM  
Blogger brando said...

White white white and white,
I'm gonna drink some beer tonight!mx

2:40 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh sweet Jesus Paul. I had to clean the ol' roos out for this one. Don't make me laugh so much.
1. Mock exercises:
1 part Pions
2 parts surface-of-the-sun weather
1 Dash Assholes in charge
Mix well with generous amounts of futility. Strain over ice.

2. Hey ya'll went Blackwater right?

3. I was eating at my favorite sushi place the other night and I almost cried I wanted you there so badly. Koba ran a restaurant somewhere in Japan and decided to retire in the US. He moved to FL, got bored and opened up another restaurant. Un-be-lieve-able food. He doesn't speak english all that well, but he understands every word and he loves to learn slang. So I sit down and this women starts trying to talk to him with the worst Bruce Lee-ish accent ever. I almost shit myself. I can only imagine that she felt that if she spoke in a bad imitation of a japanese man speaking borken engrish... I dunno. But Koba is playing along so he starts bowing furiously and everybody is kind of giggling. That's when she says it. She gets up to leave and with a straight face she states: "My dead father only wishes that he could eat sushi like this in heaven." Still in character mind you. There's a reason why FL ties Germany every year for the weirdest inhabitants.

9:10 AM  
Blogger Paul said...

good lord. this was a white woman making shit out of the sushi chef?

he should have pinned her to the wall with a flurry of chopstick throws.

and yeah, hey yall went to blackwater. he's been in iraq for a long time. he's on my myspace list. im sure he'd love to hear from you. im sure he'd love to publically humiliated out of no where. i think he really enjoyed it when you did that to him.

9:42 AM  

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