Ten Quirky Objects

Here are 10 objects that pretty much any Japanese person would recognize, but which may not be so familiar to foreigners. How many do you know? (Bonus points for knowing the Japanese name as well.)

There hints above the pictures will become visible if you highlight them. Click here for the answers.

#1 Hint: Kind of the opposite of a lawnmower.

#2 Hint: Usually at least two meters long.

#3 Hint: Not a nunchaka!

#4 Hint: For women who want to look more Western.

#5 Hint: It might help you sleep better.

#6 Hint: Used for cleaning.

#7 Hint: Standard equipment in a soapland.

#8 Hint: Used with something green.

#9 Hint: Associated with death.

#10 Hint: They’re protecting something.

Click here for the answers.

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6 Responses to “Ten Quirky Objects”

  1. Yousei Hime Says:

    Ah…I only know (I think I know) a few and know none of their Japanese names. #1 don’t know but love it; #2 rain guide, works like a downspout; #3 no clue, but reminds me of something priests–buddhist/shinto–might use; #4 eyebrows?; #5for beating futon?; #6 another guess, cleaning ears?; #7 stool for bathing before soaking; #8 tea whisk for matcha powder; #9memorial tablets for deceased?; #10 just guessing (again) scarecrows?

    Fun. I enjoyed this (and was humbled by it). :)

  2. anana3322 Says:

    I knew 3 out of 10. That’s really bad ;-)

  3. Pierre Says:

    #1 for planting rice seedlings #2 chain for rainwater runoff from roof )instead of downpipe from gutter) #3 wooden clapper to call attention (temple ceremony, neighbourhood watch; hyoushigi) #4 do not know #5 futon beater (for beating out the dust; futo tataki) #6 for cleaning out from ear (mimi-kaki) #7 small stool for washing yourself before entering hot bath #8 green tea whisker (cha sen) #9 wooden memorial stupa (sotouba) #10 straw protection for trees in winter

  4. Dom Says:

    Nice. The soaplands stool has to be my favourite. Who sits on this, exactly? I saw one with a mirror underneath….

  5. Patrick Martineau Says:

    Wow, the only one I think I know is #8 to prepare tea, I’ll reveal the answers know… I’m particularly curious about the tractor!

  6. KA International Mothers in Japan Says:

    I’ve been living in Japan for 13 years now and I only knew 5 of them!


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