The Diet God by 鈴木強

September 4, 2011

The Diet God

“It’s just not fair. Why am I the only one out of the twenty-five starting the diet not to lose weight at all? I know there are various roads to progress. And there are those who reached their ideal style and those poor buggers who get far too thin. There are also some who don’t change very much at all. But I’m just rubbish. My waist hasn’t shrunk whatsoever. I have no figure, no shape at all, and it’s beyond a joke. Why am I the only one not to be a saved by the hands of the Diet God? He even comes close. I get nervous thinking he’s coming to help me then he reaches out to the one next door. I can see why he’d choose them and not me though. On one side there’s Blacky with her great skin and on the other side Browny and her sexy tan. The only thing good about me is that I’m white. Even so, with this shape I’m just a white pig. Please Diet God, do something for me!”

And that’s when the Diet God reached out his hand. He chose Whitey, not Blacky on the left or Browny to the right. He held her in his hand and stared at her as if he was performing some kind of evaluation. Whitey held her breathe.

“White paint, you really are good for nothing,” the Diet God sighed.

Whitey is still a fatty.


The husband came home to his eighth floor apartment and pleasingly wolfed down his dinner in record time.

“I’ve been really hungry the last few days,” said the husband.

“And why’s that?” asked the wife.

“Something smells good, right? Up until a few days ago the smokestack from the crematorium was causing an awful stink, but lately there’s a great smell drifting about and it’s like it somehow makes its way into the food. I wonder if there’s a new chicken grill opened up nearby.”

“Yes. I guess you could be right.”

The truck, which was loaded with a large quantity of grilled meat sauce, secretly made its way in and out of the crematorium.

 ‘Yaki-niku’ or grilled meat cuisine is a kind of indoor Japanese barbeque. The types of meat include various cuts. Flesh, tongue, intestinal organs etc!

Good Luck by 明昌生

August 26, 2011


“If you were to choose the luckiest moment since you were born what would it be?” said the reporter as he held out the mic. There was a man standing behind with a TV camera on his shoulder. Taken aback by the sudden appearance of the mic, the old man replied “When I was a child I got ‘Excellent’ on the omikuji.” 

Omikuji is a kind of sacred lot usually found at Japanese temples, but here’s an electronic omikuji. Have a go and see if you’re as lucky as the man in the story!

Yoghurt by Kazuo Komiya

August 25, 2011

The evening rush hour was setting in and the inside of the train was almost full to the brim. Of course there were still no people reeking of booze, but there were a few housewives on their way home from the department store.

In any case the middle-aged woman who got on at that station was holding something peculiar. She had lots of shopping bags hanging from both arms and was clutching a yoghurt pot in one hand. The lid of the pot had also been peeled off and the yoghurt inside was peeking out. Had she been walking with yoghurt in hand for a long time? It was in a bad way.

That sweetly sour yoghurt-like smell began to drift around the inside of the train and the other passengers, who had grasped the situation, made their moves to watch from a distance.

The middle-aged woman headed further into the carriage in search of a seat, which was obviously not to be found. She was left standing with the yoghurt in one hand. The yoghurt continued to wobble about inside the pot. It could have spilled out at any moment with the sway of the train.

One middle-aged salary man, who couldn’t bear to watch, gave up his seat for the woman. The passengers nearby were left wondering if that was what she had intended. The woman, who had sat down in the seat bowed her head to the salary man a number of a times, then said “Please take this small gift as a token of my gratitude,” as she held out the yoghurt.

Without thinking, the well to do salary man reached out for the yoghurt. Just as he began to question his move, the salary man found he was already clutching the pot in his own hand. He went to give it back but the woman had already fallen fast asleep, her arms wrapped around her shopping bags – boy that was fast work! The man was hit by a blast of cold stares from the other salary men nearby.

He carefully manoeuvred himself around the train so as not to spill the yoghurt. Some people kept quiet and cleared the aisle, some openly raised their eyebrows and some started up whispered conversation in disbelief. Amongst these people was one young man who stood up from his seat.

“Thank you very much,” said the salary man as he sat down in the seat, “I’d like to give you this if you don’t mind.”

The young man took hold of the yoghurt without a second thought. It seemed as though the yoghurt had the mysterious power to make anyone reach out for it when offered. The salary man wasted no time in starting his own pretend nap whilst the young man pushed his way through the passengers with the yoghurt in one hand and headed up the train to find a new receiver.

That yoghurt is quite possibly still knocking about on the train – well somewhere at least – right now. Is there anyone hanging around beside you with yoghurt in hand?

Two men are talking in bar…

First man: I’ve been having rather bad dreams lately.

Second man: You’re not the only one.

First man: I get back to my apartment and there’s a gorgeous bottle of whiskey sitting on my desk. I think ‘Oh great!’ and take a hold but there’s a hole in the bottom.

Second man: My dream’s the opposite.

First man: Oh yeah?

Second man: Yeah. I get back to my apartment and there’s a gorgeous beauty sitting on my chair. I think ‘Oh great!’ and grab hold but there’s no hole in the bottom.

Taken from Takashi Atoda’s ‘Burakku Joku Taizen’ (Encyclopedia of Black Jokes). The guy was also a highly acclaimed writer of novels and short stories. Check it out…

During the summer break I was lucky enough to travel to the beautiful Kerama Islands in Okinawa with my girlfriend. We set off from Naha on the main island by ferry where we enjoyed some spectacular island scenery and flying-fish viewing. After making a brief stop at the neighbouring Aka Island we arrived at our destination, Zamami Island. On Zamami my girlfriend took a photo a statue of a dog facing out to the ocean. The statue was called ‘Statue of Marilyn’. Today I will tell the true story of Marilyn by translating the plot of a 1988 Japanese film ‘Maririn ni aitai’, or in English ‘I want to meet Marilyn’.   

Daisuke Nakazato returns to the place where he was born to open a guesthouse with his puppy Shiro who he found up in Tokyo. Shiro is interested in Marilyn, the female dog of Sawako the daughter of a guesthouse on Zamami Island called Tamashiro. Daisuke also meets Minami Kubota, an office lady from Tokyo, there for the first time. Daisuke starts to build his guesthouse on Aka Island, which is around 3km from Zamami. His ex-yakuza older brother Tatsuro also comes home and ends up helping out. Shiro often swims across 3km of sea to visit Marilyn. The first customer at Daisuke’s guesthouse, Koko Kula, is Minami. She is soon to quit her job as a cameraman to get married. Tatsuro attempts to sell Shiro to TV and takes him to Naha. However, this ends in failure as a stray dog attacks Shiro. Nevertheless, Shiro is still intent on meeting Marilyn. There is a fire at Koko Kula caused by Tatsuro smoking in bed. Daisuke tells Minami about his feelings for her, but she tells him that she has to go to Tokyo to get ready for the wedding. At this point Marilyn dies from illness. The injured Shiro drags his wounded legs across the 3km sea in order to meet Marilyn. Daisuke is worrying because he doesn’t want to say goodbye to Minami, so he follows her to the airport where they are reunited.  

A little research revealed that there is also a ‘Statue of Shiro’ on Aka Island. The plaque next to the statue reads:


And in English:

The love story of Shiro, the dog who swam across 3km of sea from Aka Island to Zamami Island to meet his girlfriend Marilyn, struck the heart of many people and in 1988, knowledge of the sea and nature of Zamami village spread throughout Japan thanks to the film ‘Maririn ni aitai’. When Shiro died at the age of 17 (over 80 in human years) on 26th November 2000 , we collected contributions from all over the country and built this memorial statue to honour the will of Shiro and to leave a permanent reminder of his achievements.

(Written around 1990 after the ‘Madonna Boom’ in Japanese society. A scary time for Japanese men. This was really fun to translate!)

Could men’s dignity sink any lower?


As men are being told to “keep quiet”, the world has taken an outrageous turn for the worse. I don’t know if it was a mountain that moved or what it was but the women are getting their own way and all the men have become cowards. This is positive proof that our country has gone to the dogs.

Outrageous office ladies are calling us names like Mr money-bag (the man who she makes pay her way), Mr Wheels (her profligate son who has the car she can use instead of a taxi) and Mr Keep (the man she uses at will for carefree fun). They have multiple men wound around their little fingers.  And this is because young men are gladly playing along.

Male companions who, as the name suggests, fawn all over their female patrons have arrived on the scene in Hanahaku, and they’re even appearing in male beauty contests to be judged in their  swimwear. Male beauty salons are booming and it seems that men are flocking to their doors asking for their leg hair and chest hair to be removed. Why don’t you just go all the way and get your balls waxed whilst you’re at it?  

Well after all, in today’s society there’s no way of stopping women from making their advancement into every walk of life. Women are, by nature, shamelessly robust creatures. Just take, for example, shell divers; the wife takes on the hardest labour whilst daddy is in the boat sorting out the shells. Even in the marathon, wasn’t Ingrid Kristiansen steadily leaving the male runners behind?

There are women builders and even women dump truck drivers. In the world of cinema, women are even taking an active role as lighting engineers.  They’re holding up these massive lights and working on top of a tall crane which we men are scared of getting up onto.  The men are down below holding the cable whilst taking orders. It’s embarrassing. They’re being told off like “Oi! Over here!” When I see that, it makes me think that the only jobs I don’t want to do are ones where you get told what to do by a woman.

Nevertheless, women are all over the place. When I go to the golf course, I don’t know if they’re caddies or golfers, but the old women are hogging the green. When I go to the races, the area around the paddock is full of gyaru holding compact cameras. Don’t use the flash! What are you going to do if the horse flashes its hoof?

Half-drunk young women prowl around the nightspots too, acting like old men. Just when I was wondering where the hell the real old men were, there he was. He came staggering out of the door into the early morning back alley wearing a worn out sweater and mum’s sandals. He was holding a bin bag full of rubbish and when I saw that he was throwing out vegetable dregs I realised that that was it.

Back in the day, it was the child’s job to bring in the newspaper. Now the father does it. Then it’s the cleaning, then bringing in all the milk. Before, when we interviewed some fathers on our TV program ‘TV Tackle’, they were saying things like “my wife is the scariest” or “my kids are the scariest” without a hint of shame. They even looked happy when they were saying it. They’re expression was completely effeminate and it was like they were saying “if you give it a try, it’s quite good.” That’s what everyone’s like and that’s why the situation is hopeless.

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