Posts Tagged ‘matsuri’

Goldfish catching champions

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    goldfish champions

    The traditional festival game of catching goldfish with a tissue paper net was taken to extremes on a recent episode of TV Tokyo’s “Champions.” Here’s a clip of one of their champions catching over 30 fish in three minutes:

    Later in the same episode, the champions who passed the speed catching round moved on to face off against each other in a new goldfish catching game. Many parents and children don’t play the goldfish catching games at festivals because it is difficult to care for the fish they catch. To encourage people to keep goldfish as pets, TV Tokyo sought the help of the Sega game designer behind the popular MushiKing collectable card game. He designed a game in which players would compete to quickly catch an entire tankload of goldfish. Each player could bring larger goldfish they had raised at home to the battle, one of which could be added to their opponent’s tank each round. If this game catches on, children may gain a special commitment to raising the goldfish they catch at festivals.

    Here’s a clip of the final showdown between the two greatest goldfish catching champions:


    In case you are wondering: yes, PETA would consider this game to be cruel. They believe that keeping fish inside tanks is bad, and recommend that fish lovers download “realistic fish computer screensavers” instead of imprisoning intelligent fish that can “speak, make tools, and think.”

    7 comments - What do you think?  Posted by James - September 8, 2009 at 8:41 am

    Categories: Japanese TV

    Volunteer Grown Opium Poppies

    Shimotsuma City
    A view of Shimotsuma.

    In Ibaraki Prefecture, Shimotsuma City‘s Opium Flower Festival has hit a snag. They have had to burn a whole field of papaver setigerum poppies that they grew. Why? They’re illegal. You know. The police frown on that kind of thing.

    A Japanese city has been forced to destroy thousands of flowers grown for a local festival after a police officer noticed they were illegal opium poppies, an official said Wednesday.

    Whoops! Those wily volunteering gardeners strike again. Luckily, they were not needed during the extermination process. The poppies were grown by volunteers, but eradicated by nearly 100 officials. Wow.

    The flowers were grown by volunteers using seeds imported from abroad, she said, adding that the city was checking how the seeds had got into the country.

    The Opium Poppy. Bad poppy. Not good poppy.
    This is the poppy in question. Also known as the “Poppy of Troy.”
    Huh. A Trojan poppy.

    The Shimotsuma flower festival draws 2,000-3,000 visitors every year, according to the city.

    Copyright AFP 2008 (via Breitbart)

    Well, let’s see how many people show up this year, now that they went and scorched the poppies into oblivion. I wonder if they included the poppy squad officials in that estimate. Since it probably bears repeating, let it be known, Japan takes drugs seriously. Beware lemon poppy seed muffins. 😉

    4 comments - What do you think?  Posted by Deas - May 14, 2008 at 4:50 pm

    Categories: General Japan, Odd / Strange

    Hina Matsuri 2008

    Happy Hina Matsuri 2008, everyone!

    Hina matsuri was originally one of five seasonal festivals (sekku) in ancient Japan, called “joshi-no sekku.”
    During the Heian period, it was very important for the aristocrats to perform the purification on the day of sekku (“sekku” literally means the turn of the season) to cleanse themselves of bad lucks.
    This custom later combined with a paper doll play at court called “hiina-asobi” and was transformed into “hiina-nagashi,” a ritual to float paper dolls on a river to wash away one’s misfortune with the dolls. This became the origin of the Girls’ Festival.
    It was since the Edo period that people started to cerebrate the festival exclusively for girls by displaying dolls on a tiered platform.

    3 comments - What do you think?  Posted by James - March 3, 2008 at 8:14 am

    Categories: Japanese Girls

    Akita’s Inukko Festival – Giant Snow Dogs

    A news report on the Inukko Matsuri, a 400-year-old festival held in Akita Prefecture:

    Inukko Festival (Yuzawa)

    Small shrines built of snow enshrine a little dog figure of moshi rice paste. The shrines are flanked by dog figures, also made of snow.

    2 comments - What do you think?  Posted by James - February 10, 2008 at 12:53 pm

    Categories: General Japan

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