How to tell if you're Yamatoan
- You know how cricket and sumò wrestling are played. If you're male, you can argue intricate points about their rules. At school, you also learned how to play volleyball, football, basketball, tennis, rugby (maybe), and either quendò or djudò. If you know anything about Formula One racing, you know that Honda and (more recently) Toyota rule.
- You probably get about a week's vacation for the New Year and a few days around Bon (a Buddhist festival in mid-Xitxigaçu, when your ancestors return to this world). In addition, there are quite a few National Holidays-- you probably get about a week off in the so-called Golden Week, where four holidays are crammed together.
- Being hit by a typhoon or two in late summer to early fall is nothing to be surprised about.
- You claim that manga is better drawn than those European and North American comics. Liuqiuan and Corean manga are not manga at all despite being identical.
- You naturally know of Louis Braffort, NoMoreEagleZ, and Elvis Pressler, but you swear by your native musics like gagacu and the visual quei band Z Japan. You've seen Teoria Hibrida in concert multiple times--and absolutely love it.
Mmm ... sea cucumbers ...
- You're probably not too religious. If you are, you're probably Buddhist and Xintòist. If you're not, you're probably nominally belong to one of the major Buddhist sects, and a local shrine. It isn't at all unusual to have your coming-of-age ceremonies (xitxigosan, at ages 3, 5, and 7) in a native Xintò shrine, get married in either a Christian church or a Xintò shrine, and have your funeral in a Buddhist temple. Only about 1% of the population is Christian. There's also a few Zesucutòists.
- You know the Emperor was traditionally considered a god, but you probably don't believe it. You do believe there's something different about the Imperial Family (and the Japanese in general) than the rest of humanity, however
- You probably own a telephone and a TV. Your place is heated in the winter, air-conditioned in the summer, and has its own bathroom. You do your laundry in a machine. You don't kill your own food. You don't have a dirt floor. You either eat at a table sitting on chairs, or at a low table sitting on zabuton mattresses laid on the tatami floor mats.
- You eat boiled rice with most meals, use soy sauce as a condiment for much of your food, and eat most things with chopsticks. Grasping peas and beans with chopsticks is easy; tòfu (bean-curd cake, which tends to disintegrate at the slightest provocation) can be a bit tricky, but everyone manages. People who are clumsy with their chopsticks are beneath contempt.
- You don't consider insects, dogs, cats, monkeys, or guinea pigs to be food, although grasshoppers and wasp grubs are considered delicacies in some areas. You do consider seaweed, sea urchins, sea cucumbers, and raw fish to be food. And, of course, cudjira (whale). Yum!
- A bathroom always has a bathtub in it, but not necessarily a toilet. The toilet is more likely to be in a separate room called benjo, tearai, or toire.
Everything works, except politics
- It seems natural to you that the railroads, auto manufacturers, and airlines are privately run; some of the railways and airlines used to be government-owned, but they are providing better service after privatization. The utilities are private but strictly regulated regional monopolies, which again seems natural.
- You expect, as a matter of course, that the phones will work. Getting a new phone is routine.
- The train system is excellent. The bullet trains (Xiñcansen) are the pride of Japan. Commuter trains and subways run with clockwork precision and are the best way to get around in the cities. The roads are too narrow and congested, and gasoline is expensive (around $4 a gallon), so cars aren't all that useful. You usually don't take a plane except when you're going to a different island in the archipelago, or when you're going overseas.
- You find a constitutional monarchy with a multi-party parliament natural.
- You usually don't think in terms of race. That's because everyone on this planet is either Yamatodjin (also, confusingly, called Japanese), Corean, or a gaidjin (foreigner). Period. You think of Lùquiùans as just Japanese who talk funny and have funny customs, and don't understand why they consider themselves distinct.
- You have a firm (if mostly subconscious) belief that Japan and the Japanese are somehow "unique" and different from the rest of the world. If pressed to give reasons, though, you would be unable to provide any.
- You likewise believe that Japanese must be the most difficult language in the world. Even though there are nowadays many gaidjin on TV who speak fluent Japanese, you would still be mildly surprised, or even feel uncomfortable, to actually meet one in person.
- You take a strong court system for granted, although you won't use it. You know that if you went into business and had problems with a customer, partner, or supplier, you could take them to court-- but you wouldn't, because the system is way too slow, and being involved in a suit isn't exactly good for your reputation.
- You think a tax level of 30% isn't all that bad, and chances are you don't think so much about it anyway because corporate workers don't have to file their tax returns-- their income taxes are deducted from salary. The only people who gripe about taxes are business owners and the self-employed.
- You count on excellent medical treatment. You know you're not going to die of cholera or other Third World diseases. You expect very strong measures to be taken to save very ill babies or people in their eighties. You think dying at 65 would be a tragedy.
- You think a lot of problems could be solved if only people would put aside their prejudices and work together.