Wednesday, 24 April 2024

Different People Have Different Customs

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Different People Have Different Customs

benki_big.gifWhen I lived on a US base in Japan, about thirty American children went to a local preschool. One day, the mother of a student suggested a potluck party, inviting Japanese teachers.

She was an American who liked collecting Japanese antiques, which decorated her place elegantly. Among her antiques, though, there was something in the foyer that astonished the Japanese teachers—a toilet bowl. It was an old-fashioned one with white background and dark blue patterns, but it was strange enough to startle any Japanese. One of the teachers asked, “Is that a toilet bowl?” The American mother answered, “Yes, but it’s clean because it was washed by the dishwasher.”

At that moment, the teachers looked at their plates and silverware, their faces twitched.

Mariko Iwakuni