A student of mine recently made a trip to Japan with his family, and he brought back a gift for me – the newest issue of Japan’s favorite business and pop culture magazine, Big Tomorrow.
I’ll tell you, perusing this periodical was a remorse-riddled exercise in cultural malaise. Obviously, the thing was going to be confusing – it’s in Japanese, after all, but the sheer strangeness of it all is what struck me.
Take for instance, this ad for Microsoft Windows Vista from the back page:
Yours is emotion. What in the hell does that mean? That’s probably the single most cryptic advertisement I’ve ever seen. Why not just go ahead and print up, “Microsoft Vista: The Truth is Not In You”?
Here are a few other phrases from the magazine I found, with the help of Google’s translator tool:
“Party boss is in favor of lifetime employment and active! The job is negatively – Embarrassing the boss now “
If the party boss is active and in favor of lifetime employment, why would you embarass the boss now? Doesn’t that strike you as counter-productive? Japan makes no sense to me.
Brazil No.1 best-selling author:
“Recipe for happiness in mind to become a success in the Russian. Have the kindness of heart failure even to enjoy the creativity!”
Any recipe for happiness that involves Russians is a complete and utter fraud as far as I’m concerned. Having said that, “the kindness of heart failure” is a phrase that does have its merits.
What’s important is, for now, to lament the past. Does not begin to say that they fear the future. If you concentrate on the front of the eyes they will also be able to accept?
Dear Lord, is Friedrich Neitzsche the managing editor of this thing? The closer I get to understanding this, the worse I feel…
Despite all this, have a wonderful day everybody, filled with the kindness of heart failure!