Thursday, August 26, 2010

Konaki Sumo - Japanese Baby Crying Festival

OK. OK. OK. This is the greatest festival know to man! Reason number 425,987 why I love Japan so much. Konaki "Crying" Sumo or Nakizumo "Sumo of Tears" is a Japanese baby crying festival. Seriously. It's pretty much a contest where it pays to be a crybaby. 

Dozens upon dozens of mothers line up, infants in arms, to enter this crazy competition. Two sumo wrestlers, each holding an infant, face off on stage in front of hundreds of onlookers to see whose baby cries first. A Japanese priest presiding over the contest "assists" by screaming, waving at, and generally trying to scare the crap out of the babies. Whichever baby begins wailing first wins. If both start to cry at the same time they have to duke it out to see who cries the loudest to determine the winner.

 I know, I know. Is it really horrible that, as a mother, I find this hilarious?Where else in the world will hundreds gather to watch grown men scream at and scared babies?!

But the Japanese have their reasons. It may seem totally bizarre and outrageous to most people, but this contest has a long history. Steeped in tradition, the festival is over 400 years old and takes place annually at a few of Japans most well-known temples. 
The idea behind the competition comes from an old Japanese proverb "Naku ko wa sodatsu" that says "Crying babies grow fast" and the louder the child cries, the more the gods are thought to have blessed them with good health. Konaki Sumo is an opportunity to pray for the babies health. 

 Contestants must be under the age of one so I missed my chance with Charlotte. Oh well, next one.

Snazzy Napper - Not So Snazzy

May I present the Snazzy Napper! Yes, dubbed the next Snuggie. Well, more like a cross between a burka and a Snuggie, this next great nap wear is available for the low cost of $14.99 for the snazzy original or $24.99 for the extra large snazzy. You'd have to pay me more than that to look like an asshole in public. As if the Snuggie wasn't bad enough, what's so great about wearing an over-sized bath robe backwards anyways? Now manufacturers have taken it a few leaps further. 

Advertised as the perfect way to catch some Z's in public. What the hell happened to the good ol' just shut your god damned eyes?! No, The Snazzy Napper is the perfect way to catch a nap in waiting rooms, cars, and yes...even on airplanes. Ok, in this day and age you'd be lucky not to get your head blown off by an undercover armored guard mistaking you for Bin Laden's honey or some shit. Let alone making everyone else in the cabin seriously consider tackling you before you blow up the plane. But don't worry the Snazzy Napper is equipped with padded eye cushion to block out light so you won't have a clue of what's going on anyway. Some one could walk right up, knife you and you'd be dead before you could get the thing off of you. 

But wait, that's not all. Luckily the Snazzy Napper comes equipped with this fantastic oval-shaped nose opening! No way! You mean that you can wear this thing and NOT worry about suffocation! That's a shame. Could you imagine sitting down in the waiting room at your doctor's office only to see someone pull this shit out, strap it on and try to take a nap? Really? Every other person in the room would have their cell phone cameras out and snapping as the clueless Snazzy Napper sleeps away, blind to the world while being instantly streamed onto the web. I can picture it now. The next great viral star to hit youtube.

With this in mind, I will now be carrying a few eggs on me at all times so that just in case I happen to come across a Snazzy Napper napping I'm gonna take advantage of that shit and egg that bastard! They'll never know what hit them. 

Hit the link for the full commercial.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Latest Japanese Fashion Craze - Debunked

Declared so tacky they never existed, these flattering faux see-thru skirts were rumored to have recently hit the streets of Tokyo and across Japan in waves of seemingly thousands of transparent-skirted women everywhere.
Last week, hearing whispers of this latest and greatest trend invading Japan, I had to check it out. Now, as most of you know or will soon discover through this blog, I am absolutely drawn to the cool, quirky and bizarre, especially if it comes from the Land of the Rising Sun. So, as soon as I heard of these skirts I had to go in search of them. "Who makes them?", "How much are they?" and "Where can I get one?" were just a few things I needed to know. Alas, they could be found nowhere and upon further inspection I became suspicious. And as I delved deeper I came upon the confirmation that the faux see-thru skirts were nothing more than a photoshopped hoax. 
It had been to good to be true. And to all you fan boys out there, wipe the blood from your noses. There will be another place, another time.