Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Of all the film and tv tropes in Japan, I think The Spontaneous Declaration is probably the most cliché and overused. Visual reference: Benjamin Braddock pounding on the glass shield at Elaine Robinson's wedding in The Graduate. It usually involves a man/woman screaming in the rain at his best girl/boy friend, how much he/she has loved her/him.
They always use slow, halting statements, and it always works.

So it comes as no surprise that there is a men's group trying to repatriate their home lives through spontaneous declarations on the street, atop milk crates.

TOKYO (AFP) — Perched on a beer case serving as a makeshift podium in central Tokyo, a group of middle-aged men are standing up to save their marriages -- and, they hope, marriage in Japan generally.

In a country where reticence about one's private life is the norm, these men are trying to prove their worth to their wives by making their vows as public as possible.

"I'm sorry I always forget to put the toilet seat down," said one man in a suit and tie confessed as he balanced on the beer box on a recent Saturday in Shimbashi, Tokyo's hub of "salaryman" corporate workers.

"I hereby declare that I will stop going to the hostess bar, I'm sorry," said another man as his wife looked on amid a crowd of curious bystanders.

Said another man: "I love you, even though I don't really say it."

The 20 men taking part in the unlikely rally chant their slogan together: "Say 'thank you' without hesitating. Say 'sorry' without being scared. Say 'I love you' without being shy."

The gathering is the brainchild of Shuichi Amano, a magazine editor in the southern city of Fukuoka and founder of the National Teishu-Kampaku Association, loosely translated as the Chauvinistic Husbands Association.


1 comment:

dorien said...

"Say 'thank you' without hesitating. Say 'sorry' without being scared. Say 'I love you' without being shy."

that sounds like something you'd see in a drama going on in the guys mind as he walks up (in slow motion) to the girl he's about to declare his love to.

aka the story of my life.