To Party in Japan; Know Something About the Culture, First.

Partying in Japan? Know something of the Culture, First.

One time I went to an Izakaiya with my, now, ex-wife and ran into a girl whom I’d socialized with – in that very limited Japanese manner – at a bar I frequented when first in Japan. When I unexpectedly see someone I know, I’m very pleasantly surprised and excited, and I exhibit this. I couldn’t understand why the girl basically pretended to hardly know me. None the less – me being an Australian – I invited her to join us for some food and drinks. These days I understand the reasons why I received the reaction I did from her. There are several of them, and without doubt there is more to the cultural customs and practices than I know.
It goes something this: 1) To join, eat, drink and socialize with someone, the most formal invitation has to be given – and agreed to – with no detail left neglected, and all intentions stated – at a prior point in time – and preferably in writing. 2) When a man and woman are together, the most delicate considerations are afforded them regards their privacy; this is an aspect of the Japanese culture that I truly appreciate. The Japanese work punishingly long hours – at the demand of their companies, and their culture – and this outing may well be the first and only opportunity in months for the two to enjoy an evening out, together. If they have kids, they, likely, have not had an evening such as this, in years, as the inlaws seem not to mind coming over to the the couples’ house, to help out, but expecting them to babysit the kids for an evening – at their house – is, apparently, out of the question; this is an aspect of the Japanese culture that I truly don’t appreciate. 3) There is, additionally, a custom in Japanese culture, which dictates that three polite refusals of an invitation is standard before acceptance will be forthcoming – whether, or not, the receiver of the invitation actually “wants to accept”… Read more…

Posted by Elliot Sabino, June 6th, 2017