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Trivia :: Elevators


Unswerving cyclist
14 Mar 2002
Japan is always considered to be a thoroughly homogenous society, yet there are local differences in behaviour that cannot be easily explained. It's obviously a known fact that people riding escalators in Tokyo stand on the left side to let others pass them by at the right side. In Osaka on the other hand people stand on the right side in order to let the hurried ones pass by on the left. Interesting insight, ne?

"Quirky" Ed has an explanation for that:

Q. Have you ever noticed that on an escalator in the Kanto and Tokai all people are standing immobile on the left side, while in the Kansai it is on the right side. Why is that ?

A. According to one unverified theory, the answer lies in the different histories of the two areas. During the Edo period, Kanto (Tokyo area) had more samurai whereas Kansai (Osaka, Kyoto, Kobe) had more merchants. When they went up and down stairs, samurai wanted to be on the left side so that they could draw their swords more easily. Merchants wanted to protect their wallets from thieves, so they stayed on the right. Modern escalator etiquette is a holdover from those days. Answer kindly submitted by Cathy Otty

Additional Comment from JB: The samurai not only walked on the left to be able to draw their sword from a more advantages position but to walk on the left also avoided that swords
and scabbards were accidentally touched by people coming from the other direction when walking down the street. An insult that could result in bloodshed.

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On Usenet someone else mentioned that this habit was introduced in Osaka during the Expo 1972 in order not to confuse foreigners. Mysterious Japan.
hehe, I stare at the back sometimes and then profusely cough on purpose.
Other times if I'm with a friend we'll start talking about AIDS especially if the elevator is really packed.

Eating garlic could also be a remedy in crowded places, hehe. Btw, garlic can become a marital issue too.
@Marital issue
I know, but then again, compared to some Thai dishes, garlic is a welcome relief. :)
My wife prepared Thai curry today, you know that devilish green stuff. Burning from inside out, ouch. :D
lol...your guys too funny...my wife has kicked me out of the bed a while ago...still waiting to be reinvited...lol
Don't say that since I'm stuck to camping out in the living room until my snoring disappears.

you poor fella's,🙂 (I mean that sincerely🙂 )
Snoreing is like part of my sleep patern,lol,, its due to the fact that as a child and young adult I lived at home with seven very loud breathing men(thats what my mum calls it) and on one accasion all my family went on hoilday all except my younger sister and myself, (due to work commitments) and the first night we could not sleep, the second night we both ended up in our mum and dads bed almost terrified of the silence, lol, I beleive I was maybe 22 years old at the time,so my family leaving home should not have caused a problem, but the silence did!😌
Snoreing is part of life for men, and should be accepted as that
hehe, my wife has a full queen size bed to herself.
If she moves me out permanently I'm going to sell the bugger and buy 2 singles ... revenge !!!

Hey Debs would you tell my wife that!
@ moyashi
buy 2 singles ... revenge !!!
She would kill you!! lolol,,, at telling your wife? "NO!!!" not untill your beautyful baby is at least 6 months old, (she'd kill me!)lolol you know only too well what new "moms" are like:D 👏
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