Snapshots of Modern Japan: 04

Political campaigners trying to get votes in downtown Matsuyama.

Okay, the picture this time isn’t fantastic, but I was trying to be stealthy. It’s election time, which in Japan means days and days of candidates going around trying to get votes by assaulting our ears. Japanese elections are not quiet: if it’s not a truck with a loudspeaker on top going around the neighborhood blasting campaign promises, it’s groups like what you see in the above picture, giving speeches through megaphones and passing out leaflets on street corners. They’re everywhere and all I can say about them is that they’re really, really annoying. Also occasionally awkward when you happen to walk past the Expel The Barbarians party (I don’t actually know who they are, but all they talk about is how Japan needs to get rid of the foreign menace) and the speaker points at you while making a point. They offered me a leaflet once and I laughed because, wow, way to miss the target demographic, guys.

I’m looking forward to the end of this season’s officially sanctioned disturbance of the peace.

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