Oh no, not Noh.


left_quoter_14x24Wooden masks hang on the wall. Most resemble those used in noh plays but one is most certainly batman…‘Avatar’ series of wooden masks by Kenichi Asano.right_quoter_13x24
Spoon & Tamago | 2015/01/15: Five Sculptors: an exhibition surveying contemporary Japanese sculpture
Learn more about the exhibit at:
   • spoon-tamago.com
   • hpgrpgallery.com
   • Kenichi Asano’s website www.k-1asano.com.

Also check out the previous “Bat Posts” on the 3Yen including:
   • Ukiyo-e of the Man-Bat (3Yen / 2012-09-09)
  • The secret history of Batman in Japan (3Yen / 2008-10-28)
  • Japanese Karuta for Batman (3Yen / 2009-11-27)
  • nah, nah, nah, nah, nah, nah, BATVAN! (3Yen / 2010-11-16)
Batvan strikes fear in Japan


‘Kakizome’ (first writing) of New Years in Japan

The Japanese attach a special significance to the first of everything you do in the new year. One of the traditional firsts celebrebrated for students is kakizome / first writing (Wiki), as evidenced by the photo below…



Previous reports of New Years’ kakizome writing on the 3Yen include:

Today is Japanese pre-Christmas

Today is Japanese pre-Christmas. December 23 is Japanese national holiday of the birthday of the current Emperor called Tenno Tanjobi {Screen Shot 2014-12-23 at 10.34.25 AM} (Wiki).


Emperor Akihito prepares to greet the flag-waving crowd at the Imperial Palace on his birthday. (Wiki).
Japanemperorbirthday “Japanemperorbirthday” by Philbert Ono – Originally uploaded by en:User:Photojpn.org. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

In Japan, Santa tries to…

quotingLEFTy_12x15In Japan, Santa tries to…

…EAT children.quotingRIGHty_12x15

Photo by hikosaemon.

The above Japanese “Santa” is actually a Namahage–New Years’ ogre on display at Tokyo Station’s Marunouchi Central Exit during the end of December as a tourism promotion for Akita Prefecture.
In New Year’s rituals, a few of the men of traditional Akita villages dress up as Namahage (生剥) demons by wearing oversized ogre masks and straw capes. Going door-to-door, the Namahage admonish children who may be guilty of laziness or bad behavior, yelling phrases like “Are there any crybabies around?” (泣く子はいねがぁ nakugo wa inēgā?) or “Are naughty kids around?” (悪い子はいねえか waruigo wa inēka?) and threaten to eat very bad kids.
Reference: wikipedia.org/wiki/Namahage.

Japan is already ‘embarrassed’ by its 2020 Olympic performance

giant twat of tokyo 2020 olymipics

Zaha Hadid says Tokyo stadium criticism is "embarrassing" for Japanese architects
dezeen.com | 8 December 2014
London-based architect Hadid was selected to design the 80,000-seat Japan National Stadium in 2012, following a restricted-entry international competition judged by a panel that included Japanese architect Tadao Ando.


Previous reports about Japan’s boondoggle Olympics on the 3Yen include:

Why don’t young people in Japan like traditional New Year’s food poisoning?

Why don’t young people in Japan like eating traditional New Year’s dishes?
Japan Today | Dec. 03, 2014
in Tokyo, for New Year’s, my host family and I ate a traditional osechi meal. Served in a multi-layered box, almost each of the dozen or so dishes had some sort of auspicious meaning behind it More and more young people born and raised in Japan are deciding they can do without osechi at New Year’s, and they’ve actually got some pretty sound reasons whymore..

“Why?”…Maybe ’cause it’s stone cold, three day old food that hasn’t been refrigerated, sheesh.



Yummy-looking, New Year’s osechi like the above ought to be enough to make said-openyoung people in Japan like eating traditional New Year’s dishes,said-closed NOT.

Osechi-ryori (御節料理 or お節料理) is a tradition started in the Heian Period (794-1185), and at times it tastes a millennium old. wikipedia.org/wiki/Osechi

Japan’s failed Saint is still looking good

Holy-moly! Japan’s OG—Original Gaijin—Saint Francis Xavier is looking great for being almost 500 years old on his Saint’s Day December 2 (he died on December 2, 1552).


Saint Frankie X is perhaps Japan’s most venerated foreign failure.
That is, the percentage of Christians in Japan has remained at around one per cent every since 1549, when Francis Xavier arrived as a missionary (he left by December 1551 with his tail between his legs without having mastered what he called the “Devil’s Tongue,” Japanese).

Quotes about Saint Francis Xavier’s failures in Japan are in the Comments Section below.

Butt-ugly Buddha bust


Four South Koreans held over theft of Tsushima Buddhist statue
The Japan Times | Nov. 25, 2014

Ok, ok, what’s the-rest-of-the-story?
Was this butt-ugly statuette really a “gift” from Silla Korean kingdom?
Or, was the statuette of Buddha “presented” to Nagasaki Prefecture’s Bairinji temple in the 9th century as forced tribute?
The previous times Koreans stole Buddha statues from Japanese temples the statues were tribute or war prizes that were being repatriated—Stealing back stolen stuff.

How does this work?

Just looking at this photo of the Shiba Ryotaro Library in Osaka makes me wonder how does this library work?
How could someone even get a book from the middle–let alone the top–of the stack?


Tadao Ando Architects & Associates designed the Shiba Ryotaro Library, which is part of memorial museum for the historical novelist, Shiba Ryotaro (Wiki).
Read a full description and see more photos of this seemingly impossible library at: architectuul.com/architecture/shiba-ryotaro-memorial-museum