You know you’ve been in Japan too long when…

  1. You stare at gaijin (foreigners) in public
  2. You’re doing the “peace sign” in most of your Facebook photos
    After the Mochi-tsuki with his cousins
  3. You don’t feel uncomfortable buying a pack of gum with a 10,000 yen bill ($110 bill)
  4. You’ve come to realize mayonnaise goes good on everything (even pizza, plain rice, bread, fish, and sandwiches)
  5. You bow when meeting someone (even if they aren’t Japanese), shaking hands with someone, while apologizing, or while thanking someone.
    Crowded train in Tokyo, Japan Chuo Line
  6. Crowded trains (last train or early morning trains) don’t offend or bother you much anymore.
  7. You’ve come to realize trains are always on time; if they are late, you start to get nervous, thinking you might have misread the schedule.
  8. You bow while talking on the phone.
  9. You know your blood type
    KFC christmas chicken Japan
  10. You ate fried chicken on Christmas Day
  11. It seems perfectly normal for a manga or anime character to be in advertisements (even for things like mascara or lip gloss)
  12. You don’t know the English equivalent of certain words (especially food names)
  13. You speak “Janglish,” a mixture of English and Japanese, where you substitute words like “genki” and “mendokusai” into every day conversations. You also sometimes have difficulties communicating with people who can’t speak any Japanese (like family members, friends from abroad, etc) when skyping – because you accidentally insert Japanese into the conversation
    Crowded Japan
  14. You no longer think it’s rude to yell “sumimasen” at a restaurant when you need to order
  15. When it’s raining, you can bike with an umbrella without crashing or getting wet
  16. You aren’t afraid of someone stealing your umbrella at an office when you leave it in the holder on a rainy day
  17. Even if they stole it, you have like seven more umbrellas at home
    Umbrella condom advertisement Japan
  18. You expect all shops to have umbrella condom (plastic bags) dispensers
  19. When you see a foreigner with a map, you have an urge to help them (or translate for them)
  20. You always wear high heels when you go out
  21. You have a collection of Purikura at home
    Japanese purikura Japan
  22. Sometimes you will have a couple hundred dollars of cash in your wallet, since you can’t use credit cards
  23. Paying your utility bills at a convenience store seems perfectly normal
  24. Earthquakes don’t faze you anymore
  25. You can understand the practical purposes of all the sun protection sleeves and hats in the summer
  26. You’ve come to rely on vending machines
    Vending Machine Japan
  27. Coffee in a can is a perfectly normal and acceptable beverage
  28. Sometimes, when you look at your own photos, you’re surprised by how “gaijin” you look
    Inner racial, innerracial Japanese American couple
  29. You can sleep standing up on a train
  30. Engrish isn’t as funny as it used to be
    Funny Silly sign Japan Engrish
  31. You spend time trying to figure out what an Engrish word actually means
    Funny Silly sign Japan Engrish
  32. You’ve spent the night at a Manga café or Karaoke bar after missing the last train. More than once.
  33. You’ve fallen asleep on a stranger’s shoulder on the train
  34. You know the timetable for the last train to your place (house, apartment, dorm, etc)
  35. Bakeries are your best friend (and you’ve probably gained about five pounds from all their chocolate muffins and panda-shaped melon bread)
    japanese bakery
  36. You actually kind of like the toilet bidet that cleans your butt for you (with a blast of water)
  37. Gag gifts in Japan (and Japanese humor) don’t faze you anymore
    Japanese gag gift donki
  38. Even in your home country, you have the urge to pour your neighbor a drink when their cup is empty
  39. You are more scared of police officers on bikes than police officers in cars
  40. You don’t pull over when a police officer behind you has their car lights flashing
    Donki hote
  41. You know the entire melody of the Don Quixote / Donki Hote song by heart
  42. When you go to Onsen, you don’t wait for your friends to start stripping to take off clothes. It no longer bothers you to be the first one naked.
  43. Being naked at Onsen doesn’t bother you anymore, even if you’re with close friends
  44. You understand when your Japanese boyfriend / Japanese husband doesn’t give you anything on Valentine’s Day

Add me on Google Plus: +Grace Buchele

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6 responses to “You know you’ve been in Japan too long when…

    • On Valentines Day in America, the guys usually buy their girlfriend/wife chocolate, flowers, and/or jewelry.
      But because of a translation error when they were marketing Valentine’s Day in Japan, Japanese people believe the holiday is where WOMEN give MEN home-made chocolate (instead of the other way around).

      So guys don’t give you anything on valentine’s day. And they expect chocolate. It was weird (for me).

    • My Japanese friends are equally split between the “V for Victory” and “it just means peace!” camps… So I’m not sure. It’s just a thing here.

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