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PostPosted: Mon Sep 14, 2009 11:24 am 
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I was right on the border of Koga and Nogi, a couple of fairly small towns about an hour (by train) north of Tokyo.

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 16, 2009 4:44 am 
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A friend of mine told me no ordinary people in Japan have tattoos because they are associated with the Yakuza. Is that true?

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 16, 2009 11:21 pm 
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I wouldn't say that no ordinary people in Japan have tattoos (don't know any myself, but I'm sure there's some), but it's true that tattoos are typically associated with Yakuza. So much in fact that some onsen (hot springs) don't allow people with tattoos to enter, because the other bathers may feel uncomfortable around them. I've heard that now-a-days some Yakuza don't get tattoos specifically so they aren't so easily identifiable as being Yakuza but I don't know any Yakuza so I can't say for sure if it's true.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 17, 2009 11:39 pm 
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What is the Yakuza? Are they a Japanese gang or mafia(I'm in, by the way)?

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 20, 2009 1:11 am 
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They're essentially the Japanese equivalent of the mafia. Though, from what I know, they're less prone to violence than the old US mafia and focus more on white coller crime (like Japanese criminals in general). Loyalty to your "family: and obedience to superiors are very important to yakuza. From what I know (and I haven't done any serious research so it might be a bit off), they're so heavily ingrained in various industries (particularily construction) that that government thinks trying to get rid of them would be more trouble than it's worth.

Since they're not big on violent crime, people usually don't have anything to fear from the yakuza as long as they don't bother them.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 03, 2009 6:55 pm 
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shauni wrote:
A friend of mine told me no ordinary people in Japan have tattoos because they are associated with the Yakuza. Is that true?

Idk about Japan, but here in Honduras, it's illegal to have a tattoo because it promotes gangs.

Hey, Josiah, I was wondering, since I'm here in Honduras and all, should I make a 'The Ask NintendoGamer(or NG) About Honduras Thread'?

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 04, 2009 12:32 pm 
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You can if you want (and it looks like you already did), but this isn't really the proper place to ask about it.

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 04, 2009 4:28 pm 
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Woops, sorry I thought I had asked a question, well, here's one.

Does it snow alot in Japan, and if so, where, how long, and how much?

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 04, 2009 8:57 pm 
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Ok, so Shauni already answered my question of why people in Britain drive on the left side, but do you know why the Japanese drive on the left side? Surely it can't be for the same reason.

Also, I recently watched an episode of Top Gear, where Jeremy was racing Richard and James across Japan. Jeremy was in a car(Nissan GTR) while James and Richard were in a bullet train/bus. Anyway, when James and Richard were using their phones, they were told not to because it is rude.

Long story short, why is it considered rude to use your phone on public transport? Well, moreso than it is in the U.S.

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PostPosted: Thu Nov 05, 2009 8:17 pm 
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Does it snow alot in Japan, and if so, where, how long, and how much?

Japan is a very long country (as in, it's a very long distance from the northern end to the southern end). In the far south, such as Okinawa, the climate is sub-tropical and it doesn't snow at all. On the other extreme, the northernmost areas, such as Hokkaido, and the mountains can get quite a lot of snow (enough to support ski areas and the liked). Tokyo, on the other hand, is more in the middle. It gets a bit of snow here and there during the winter (the Nov - Feb ish time), though it usually melts about as soon as it falls. So it really all depends where in Japan you are.

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Do you know why the Japanese drive on the left side?

I've never been entirely sure. Though one web site I found claims that the reason dates back to Japan's first railway system. Specifically, Japan hired outside contractors to help them create the system. The British won the bid so the trains ran on the left side of the tracks. When cars were introduced later, they carried on the left side system used by the trains.

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Long story short, why is it considered rude to use your phone on public transport?

It's perfectly fine to use your mobile phone for e-mail, web browing, and the like (as long as its not making noise and you're not sitting in the special seats which are reserved for the elderly, injured, and pregnant, where all phone use is discouraged) but yes, talking on it while on a train or bus is considered very rude. There's no specific reason why it's rude. In Japanese cultural, it's deeply ingrained that, whenever possible, you should do everything you can to avoid inconveniencing anyone else (even if doing so inconveniences you). Talking on the phone might bother fellow passangers so it's frowned upon, though that's just one minor example of many. I will also note that the application of this cultural norm isn't always logical or consistant. For example, you can talk to your friend sitting next to you on the train all you want (though overly loud voices are naturally rude), which makes about as much noise as talking on the phone would.

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PostPosted: Thu Nov 05, 2009 8:27 pm 
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Quote:
Quote:
Do you know why the Japanese drive on the left side?

I've never been entirely sure. Though one web site I found claims that the reason dates back to Japan's first railway system. Specifically, Japan hired outside contractors to help them create the system. The British won the bid so the trains ran on the left side of the tracks. When cars were introduced later, they carried on the left side system used by the trains.


Um...is it true that Japan used British POWs from WW2 to build there rail systems? it's what we learned in history class in secondary school.

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PostPosted: Thu Nov 05, 2009 11:43 pm 
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Japan's first rail systems were built in the late 1800's, way before WW2, with the help of some British engineers (from what I heard, they beat out the US and France in a bidding war). By WW2, they already had a pretty expansive system. A lot of rails were seriously damaged by bombing in WW2 but they were repaired fairly quickly once the war ended. I haven't read or heard anything about them using British POWs during the war though. From what I know, there wasn't much railway construction going on during the war. In fact, they actually tore up a lot of tracks then so they could use the steel for military purposes. And, though I haven't researched this, considering what I remember from history class (been awhile, but we did spend a lot of time on WW2), I don't think that British actually fought the Japanese very often (could be wrong though), so I don't know if they would have had many oppertunities to take prisoners anyway.

So, to summerize, as far as I know it's not true, though I'm not completely sure.

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 08, 2009 6:33 pm 
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okay, no worries. I'll look into it myself and get back to everyone thats interested

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 09, 2009 2:43 pm 
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At very least, I've never heard anything about it, the Wikipedia page on the Japanese rail system doesn't mention anything about British POWs (or any serious construction taking place during the war), and a quick Google search didn't turn up anything either.

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 09, 2009 3:34 pm 
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Hey, do any to most people in Japan speak anywhere from a little to alot of english, or are English/Japanese, and vice-versa, translators hard to come by?

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