Not everything on TV or Netflix is real, guys.
If you have been watching anime since childhood, you probably have several images of the country burnt to a crisp at the center of your imagination, fed by all that anime – especially the classics, or the ones that have been around since the 1980s and the 1990s.
Well, it’s time that we debunked some of the myths associated with Japanese culture that may have been due to your exposure to anime from this country.
Myth # 1: All Japanese food is extremely healthy.
In anime, we often see characters noshing on modest portions of meat, lots of fish, vegetables, soups, and noodles – lots and lots of noodles! In fact, Dragon Ball Z wouldn’t be the same without Son Goku eating bowls of noodles because he was so super-human, and super-famished, too. But how true is this?
Like other Asian countries, Japan definitely has its share of healthy food items. Often these items are available at home (as home cooking) or in some restaurants where they’re offered by the owners.
Anime – Eating at Cafe
But when you go out for quick bites and enter popular fast food joints, don’t expect steamy, warm meals filled with vegetables and fat-melting properties.
You will encounter lots of fried food, cholesterol-laden fried chicken, mayonnaise, and other things that will go directly to your thighs. Be realistic on your foodie trip to Japan.
Myth # 2: Japan is a catch basin for all things weird and bizarre, and Japanese people will “understand and love you” no matter what.
This is a massive myth and sort of unfair to the Japanese people as well.
Think about it: just because anime came from Japan, some people assume that they can bring their waifus to Japan and expect big warm hugs from the people, even though the majority of the people that they meet back at home freak out. Even modern Japan isn’t this way.
So our advice to first-time travelers who have some “Japan-inspired” tendencies that may not be Japan-inspired at all, but completely just anime-inspired: tread lightly.
Myth # 3: Japan is ultra-mega-high technology BOOM!
Again, a myth. Japan might have the most hardcore technologies for personal computing, Big Data, and what not, but they’re still pretty mired with physical paperwork.
Cyberpunk Alley – Anime
Paperwork, paperwork everywhere. If you want to live here, you have to physically go to offices, set an appointment, come back before your appointed time so they can entertain you, fill up forms… You get the idea.
So no matter how swash-buckling technology gets in Japanese anime, the real Japan is more reminiscent of other Asian countries in the mid-nineties – struggling with conventional ways of doing things, and embracing technology.