Instead of “pass/fail” Japanese students used to receive college entrance exam results via telegram with a message, “cherry blossoms are blooming” (pass), or “cherry blossoms are falling” (fail).
Japan has been wearing surgical-style masks since 1918 and has become a part of social etiquette. It is also worn as a fashion item and serve as defensive barriers due to social awkwardness. Total sales of disposable face masks amounted to ¥35.8 billion in 2018.
Japan has over 5 million operating vending machines currently within the country, making it so there is 1 vending machine per 23 people, making it the country with the most vending machines per capita in the entire world.
Residents of Shingo, Japan believe Jesus did not die on a cross in Jerusalem, but instead he fled to their town and became a rice farmer.
When the Japanese emperor announced Japan’s surrender in WW2, his speech was too formal and vague for the general populace to understand. Many listeners were left confused and it took some people hours, some days, to understand that Japan had, in fact, surrendered.
There is a town in Japan that is filled with scarecrows. Basically the entire town has left or died and this woman has filled this tiny town with handmade scarecrows.
Ohaguro is the process of dyeing the teeth black in Japan. Black dyed teeth are a symbol of status thought to compliment the white painted faces of women. The dyeing was also done to mask the yellow teeth and make the teeth stronger by preventing the growth of cavities. It was outlawed in 1870.
A Japanese hospital has an entrance test for aspiring medical students – they must perform 3 tasks in 15 minutes using surgical instruments – make miniature paper cranes, reassemble a dead bug from parts and make miniature sushi using a single rice grain. 40 students are selected.
When Japanese prime minister Keizō Obuchi was a young man and short on money, he travelled to thirty-eight countries, completely circumnavigating the globe and taking odd jobs as he went. These included being a dishwasher, an assistant aikido instructor and a TV camera crew assistant in Berlin.