Have Another Hit?

Filed under:☽2004,Culture — posted by JAWjaw on 12/7/2004 @ 9:48 pm

On Okinawa one of the more difficult subjects to adjust to as a foreigner, or more specifically an American, is the animosity towards the subject of alcohol. We own a bar, there’s nothing wrong in that. But there has to be some sort of responsibility in the fact that others may not comprehend the negative affects of alcohol and “fun.” Alcohol is so prevalent in Japanese society that I have seen a “little league” baseball team fund raiser being promoted by pictures of the elementary school team on bottles of awamori, the Okinawan version of sake. Although the law states no one under twenty can purchase alcoholic beverages, it isn’t uncommon to see children of various ages run to the local store to pick-up alcoholic beverages for their parents. I get quite the evil-eye when I disallow minors to purchase such beverages for their parents at our bar. My view on the subject is if someone has to send a child to get their beverage then maybe they really don’t need it.

Different Strokes

Filed under:☽2004,Culture — posted by JAWjaw on @ 8:14 pm

On Sunday, Taki and I went to a charity event in Ginowan. The event was a culmination of various traditional-style Okinawan music and dances. One of the participants was an American friend of ours that had joined a dance troupe about six months ago. Similar troupes from the island voluntarily gathered for the charity event. We knew about his participation in the local culture, but had no idea he what was to spring on us. With the local style of dance, there are female as well as male parts. So, the last thing we expected was our friend to suddenly appear fully decked-out in a female role – make-up, wig, and all! Although his golden-colored fans were trembling, he was great. Another part of the event that was extremely enjoyable for me was when “senior” local citizens, up to age 85, performed a Cuban-style samba with impressive agility. Over all, the performances were what the locals would call “tottemo tanoshi! If you ever get the chance, I would recommend attending one of these types of events.

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