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Yokohama: What’s the most annoying thing Japanese people say to you on a regular basis?

by Paul Nehls

Anton Olen
Student, 20 (Swedish)
I’m fluent in Japanese and am more disturbed when Japanese people speak English to me first. Also, it’s annoying when they assume and ask, “Are you American?”


Stephen Jackson
Teacher, 28 (American)
Nothing really annoying, actually — not that I’ve noticed. But the most common question is, “Where are you from?” Everyone is really nice here.


Yingying Jiang
Teacher, 24 (British)
“You’re good at using chopsticks,” which considering my ethnicity is pretty strange. Also, they often ask me for the pronunciation of Chinese food names, except they’re usually exactly the same as in Japanese, which surprises them.


Karthik
Mariner, 28 (Indian)
Nothing annoying — the Japanese people are wonderful. They are some of the best people I’ve met in travelling over the world.


David Reed
Teacher, 25 (American)
No specific questions, but I’ve found I get lots of questions like, “Do you do this (insert some normal human experience here) in America?” For example, “Americans can get jet lag too?” or “Is there a PTA in the U.S.?”


Muhammad Suhail
Automobile exports, 34 (Pakistani)

Frankly, there isn’t anything that I can remember like that. The Japanese people always seem so courteous.

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