Festival Yaks

Yaks posing for a photo at the Sanja-Matsuri in Asakusa.

I’m going to Greece for a vacation, so this will be the last post until about Aug. 1.web analytics


4 Responses to “Festival Yaks”

  1. Conall Says:

    What is a Sanja-Matsuri? It seems like the gentleman front and center is a bit out of uniform with the collared shirt and vest!


  2. liamdempsey Says:

    So, is that like a Japanese Mafia family reunion? Is being a member of the Yakusa not something to keep on the down low?

  3. qjphotos Says:

    To Conall:

    Sanja Matsuri is on of Tokyo’s three biggest festivals. Portable shrines called Mikoshi are carried around the neighborhood to bless the local shops and homes.

    The guy in the front of the picture is the Oyabun, the gang’s boss.

  4. qjphotos Says:

    To Liam:

    You can often see Yakuza at Japanese festivals. Traditionally, they’ve been very open about their identities, and their punch perms and full-body tattoos make them easy to identify. I was quite surprised to find a magazine about yakuza that listed the addresses of all their headquarters, and I had a friend in Sapporo who had a business card that was given to her by a yakuza. They also used to wear pins with their gang’s crest on them the same way that salary men wear company pins on their suits.
    Due to crackdowns by the government, many gangs have been going underground, have stopped cutting off their pinkies, wear more normal clothes and abandoning their punch perms, but some, like the ones in this picture are still very open.

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