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non-english speakers 2005/10/30 18:13
Hey Living Reports,

The reason I donft want English speaking friends, is that I am in a situation where Ifm trying to make gREALh friends who speak gJAPANESEh so that I can practice, AND be able to live here more comfortably. If I want ryuugakusei friends I only hafta go to international lounge and meet people from the States, Britain, Korea, Chinacetc. Also, Ifm not interested in dating these people, b/c they are going to go back home, and I am not. I want to stay and live in Japan forever. I am attracted to Japanese gals as well, sure, so Ifm sure thatfs part of it. But people have such a negative stigma attached to that. If I went to Britain for example people would definitely not go gooooooh, youfre attracted to Brittish girls HUH?!h, dig? Itfs usually an Caucasian-Asian interracial dating phenomena that occurs from outside the relationship.

Um, but back to matters at handcI just want to make friends, meet a nice girl, play blues clubs, get married, and have some kids after making enough money.

by sixtiessoul rate this post as useful

To 60s soul 2005/10/30 19:42
I haven't read all your recent responses, but just the one addressed to me, so please forgive me if I missed out anything.

"could you maybe teach me WHERE to go to meet the friendly kids?"

Did you see my post titled "extra info"? Try Jirokichi.

"You think theyfd want a guitarist friend from LA? Is that because of connections or what?"

No no, I thought you were asking how to make casual friends. People would just love to be your _friend_. Actually, I see no reason you'd have trouble making friends on your very campus. I think a lot of people would be interested on becoming friends with someone from a different culture. And additional to that, L.A. has a cool image for rock guitar fans.

Also, the link that Badbob posted shows photos around the South Exit of Koenji Station. When you get out of the ticket gate, go to the right, and then right again along the railroad track, and you'll find a bunch of friendly bars (although this is in the opposite direction from all the clubs like Jirokichi).

Anyway, first you become friends, and then you start talking about performing and dating. I thought this was an international procedure.

However, I would also look into your campus in Waseda if I were you. Waseda always had a reputation for bringing out important people in the pop-cultural field. All the famous novelists, manga artists, cinema and band people are graduates of Waseda, and most of them belonged to its famous circles. Waseda will inspire you, I'm sure. Don't waste your time there.
by Uco rate this post as useful

hey uco! 2005/10/30 22:15

uco man. i was just wondering, if it wouldn't be too much trouble, if i couldn't have your email address? i will promise not to bug you or whatnot, and i'm just a normal blues musician kinda guy from LA.

But i don't quite understand the music scene in Japan, and maybe if i had a question or two this year during my study abroad you might be able to help me out / be friends?

my name is sixtiessoul on everything, including hotmail. all you hafta do is add the @ sign. i'm leaving it that way, cos i think if you put an email address they delete your message if i remember right. :)

please email me if you can some info on jirokichi. ps. are you going this monday?


by sixtiessoul rate this post as useful

. 2005/10/31 02:48
It could be worse mate, you could be a japanese person stuck in London. Hostile doesn't begin to cover people, especially youths in burberry
by doug rate this post as useful

Culture Shock 2005/10/31 14:33
I can see the culture shock from some of your posts. It usually comes from loneliness and a major feeling of being out of place, not knowing the rules, and realizing that you can't really complain about the things that don't go your way because it isn't your country. (At least that's what it was for me.)

The first thing you need to know is that a girlfriend will NOT solve this problem. It's within you, and (especially if she's Japanese) she won't be able to help you with it.

While you're in culture shock, you will need her more than she (or anyone else for that matter) needs you. When you can, dial yourself back because culture shocked gaijin can come off as being pretty needy.

Don't shun association with other foreigners. While you're going through this, you will need people to complain to who will understand your complaints and sympathize. I suggest you find a foreigner's bar that suits you and become a regular. It's good therapy. (But don't become alcoholic.)

The thing that gets you through this period is obsession. Generally most of the people who came out the other side obsessed over something, some goal they want to accomplish in Japan. For me, I wanted to become a translator, so I obsessed on study. My roommate obsessed on Ainu and indigenous people. Another friend obsessed on money. The advantage of obsession is that you are willing to put up with the little inconveniences in order to pursue your goal. It really helps you get through the period. It might seem a little scary to you how obsessive you can become, but after you start to accept the inconveniences, you'll find you're a happier person, and you will naturally not care quite so much for the obsession anymore.

Good luck.
by Old Ant rate this post as useful

thanks for the advice... 2005/10/31 16:32
hey old ant,

thanks for the advice. i'm not looking to solve the problem though with a girlfriend. i'm a pretty settled guy emotionally, but the lonliness is getting to me, of course, or it wouldn't be in the handbook right? hehe.

um, yeah, the point i was trying to obsess on and i think i made that pretty clear was music, and finding japanese friends who play music. where? how?

i have a regular bar with Gaijin Kids (Hub in Takadanobaba)...but no offense to them, they're all misfit kids who also have no Japanese friends.

Everyone sees or hears the word "girl" and thinks "oh there's another one of those caucasian american dudes who want to date Japanese girls."

Um, i just want friends, normalcy, and to get away for awhile to reset. haha.

Sorry if that seems grouchy, but yeah, yer right, it's getting to me, and it's like hearing AGAIN from someone "You're yer the master of yer destiny, etc. etc. etc." for the 15th time.

but i will take the obession thing into account, and maybe learn to put my uneasiness into learning japanese....

SOMEHOW. hahahahaha.


by old ant rate this post as useful

You can ask me everything about Japan! 2005/10/31 18:16
I have been to Japan a lot of times. You can ask me everything!
by Dragoneyes rate this post as useful

Making Friends with and Dating Japanese 2005/11/1 06:47
International exchange events and circles both Japanese and foreigners belong to are a good place for making Japanese friends. At my Japanese university there is International Student Center, TRUSS (student circle that promotes friendship between Japanese and international students) and English Speaking Society (a circle consisting of Japanese students, but foreign students are invited to take part in one of their tours). Moreover, YMCA introduces Japanese host families to international students (and it is not necessary to belong to YMCA). When a foreigner makes Japanese friends there, he or she can be introduced to the friends of Japanese friends. Professional societies (such as IEEE or IEEJ for electrical engineers) also provide the opportunity to meet the locals. Reading magazines like Tokyo Walker or Kansai Walker and attending events real Japanese go to is also a good idea.

When it comes to dating, I don't think a foreigner should try to pick up a Japanese in a club. Japanese girls who go to the clubs of Roppongi to meet foreign man just want to free English lessons, a trophy to show off to her friends or a toy that will be replaced by the next one quickly. If you can't get an introduction by a friend or meet a Japanese girl at a more serious activity than clubbing, the internet is an option. I met my first Japanese girl friend at www.japan-guide.com. If even that doesn't work, I suggest an international marriage agency specialized in introducing Japanese women to western man.

In the Japanese society it is essential to belong to some group and to get introductions - especially for a foreigner who wants to stay in Japan forever. The whole society is based on trust, connections and introductions.
by OkinawaDolphin rate this post as useful

Serious 2005/11/1 13:02
Being serious is more important.
by Module rate this post as useful

smiling trains 2006/2/9 03:09
Mr sixties

Living near tokyo i experience the city often but can always retreat to quieter surroundings. The people outside of tokyo do seem friendlier but as a rule i try not to generalise as people from all areas do tend to shock my beliefs as quickly as they are formed, good and bad. I think some shocks or setbacks whilst living in japan tend to alter our expectations of other peoples behaviour to our own this i think closes our minds to possible positive outcomes aswell as stopping us from seeing the simple natural explanations of percieved rude behaviour, the previous example of commuters being tired and grumpy on trains illustrating this point. Anyway my point is you should maybe empathise with others especially those from an other culture and always bare that in mind when condemming others behaviour, closing your mind doesnt open other peoples.
p.s being british myself im glad i had a chance to try and explain my cultures behaviour that you deem so unfriendly, on the trains anyway...
by Bipolar rate this post as useful

england v. japan 2006/2/10 04:16
Mr. Bipoloar, yeah, you get used to it. i did, after 3-4 months, when this was posted from, WAYYYY back. sorry if made all of jolly England sound droll and unfriendly man, i think the point was made that i was asking advice on how to deal with a culture that was unlike my own, rather than saying...oh christ it was too long ago and things are fine, i don't care now. hahaha. sorry again...cheers. :)
by sixtiessoul rate this post as useful

Do Japanese like Aussies? 2006/8/20 20:08
Just wondering if Aussies are liked in Japan?...A Japanese friend of mine said "We are annoying!"...it this true?
by AussieAndrew rate this post as useful

. 2006/8/21 02:01
You asking this question already makes you a bit annoying, or should I say being skeptical :)

I haven't been told that in person but.... but... I can feel that a few people in Japan probably felt that way. That's when you take a step back I guess

But it is true most people in Japan don't understand Australians. We think differently and more opened minded than those from other countries yet they and everyone always think Oz is all about kangaroos and koalas and beaches and unsophisticated citizens.

To summarise - we are sometimes considered annoying, because we voice our opinions at will (unlike most other Westerners, would you believe), and we argue with our friends. My Australian friend lost a friendship with another Japanese friend because they argued over something insignificant and never made up for it again. Word of warning - don't force your opinion on them, and you'll be completely fine.
by AussieRouge rate this post as useful

Help 2006/10/22 23:44
Please tell me on what sites can i make friends from Japan???
Thanks!!!!!!!!! v mach!
by roma rate this post as useful

I wonder... 2006/10/23 09:49
After reading both pages of this. I have to wonder if I will fit in very well in Japan when I go to study Internatinal Development. My plan was to join an english teaching program for a year or two before applying to the Masters Program so that my studies wouldnt be distracted by culture shock and my adapatation and language abilities wouldnt hold me back either.

Generally speaking, Im a quiet guy, Im not shy really. But I dont like to talk needlessly. I try to say what I mean directly, and I dont like to waste words, I feel that personally (and this ONLY applies to me in my opinion) that the less I speak the more impact my words have when I choose to speak. Im starting to fear that I will be seen as cold and distant when I get to Japan. What is the likelyhood that, that will be the case?
by Casey B. rate this post as useful

The Blues 2006/10/23 09:51
You are a Blues Guitarist, your life is about the blues....stop whining, write music!

I could be on to something?
by BB Whiner rate this post as useful

intolerant 2007/5/30 19:44
i've been on a solo trip here for a week.. and i can sympathize with the original question here... i was feeling bad enough to seek out others with similar experiences in tokyo.
the milk of human kindness (if not the politeness in dept stores..) seems to be missing... lactose intolerant perhaps.. i had more fun in austria!

i too think its a place that needs time to understand.. but itsa a nightmare experience for a week on your own.
by mark rate this post as useful

intolerant 2007/5/30 19:46
Hey intolerant. I posted that nearly 2 years ago. I'll tell you whatever u want to know, cos i look at this post now, and laugh.

by sixtiessoul rate this post as useful

Sixtiessoul Please Elaborate 2007/5/30 23:41
I read this entire thread and I am very interested in your personal outcome. Did you make many friends? Did you find a girlfriend? Did you overcome the culture shock? Did you become part of various "circles?"I am curious because I have also experienced some similar feelings on many visits to Japan, What especially caught my attention is the lack of smiling. In the US it would be extremely rare to not have a smile reciprocated in virtually all circumstances- this is certainly not the case in Japan. Also when traveling in Japan, I too miss the ease with which strangers casually converse with each other. So what happened?
by PD rate this post as useful

i beg to differ 2007/6/2 00:28
Interesting, although old, thread. I've just spent three weeks travelling around Japan and found that if people wouldn't smile/talk to me in trains or on the street, they could be quite chatty in clothes and record shops and incredibly nice, very chatty and interested in talking to foreigners in bars and clubs.

Nowhere in this world has it been so easy for me to talk to girls in bars and clubs, and often they were the one coming towards me. And believe me I am rather average-looking.
by patrick rate this post as useful

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