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Kazu Kuzuwata: ‘You’ll never find a rainbow if you’re looking down’

by Elliott Samuels

Staff Writer

Name: Kazu Kuzuwata
Age: 34
Nationality: Japanese
Occupation: IT engineer
Likes: Music, the sea, Haruki Murakami, respect, advanced technology
Dislikes: Pollution, disrespect


1. What does the kanji that comprises your first name mean? Would you say it matches your personality? My kanji character, 和 (wa), means peace, unity, Japan. I think it pretty much matches me.

2. Where do you go to escape Tokyo? Somewhere in Chiba or Kanagawa (prefectures) for surfing.

3. What do you miss most about Japan when you are overseas? Japanese food, especially ramen and onigiri (rice ball).

4. What’s your favorite Japanese word or phrase? Age-age (hypertension). It always lifts my spirits.

5. What’s your favorite phrase in any language? You’ll never find a rainbow if you’re looking down (but you will occasionally find cash).

6. Describe your most embarrassing moment. My pants split open while I was giving a presentation to my colleagues. Unfortunately for me, everyone could see my underwear.

7. What’s the most exciting/outrageous thing you have ever done? I went swimming with wild dolphins.

8. What’s the strangest request you’ve ever been asked in your line of work? Please talk to the audience and ignore the Anpanman who has fainted.

9. If you were a salad, what kind of dressing would you be? A nonoil shiso (perilla leaf) dressing.

10. If you could have dinner/share a bottle of wine with anyone from history, who would it be? Steve Jobs. I think he was a genius.

11. What song best describes your work ethic? “Guts Da Ze,” by Ulfuls.

12. How would you get an elephant into a refrigerator? Thanks to Japan’s super-advanced technology, we’re able to ask Doraemon for help.

13. Name three uses of a stapler without staples. A pair of tongs, a boomerang, a staple remover.

14. What superhero would you most like to be? Batman, because he is already a billionaire.

15. What do you think about while standing on the train? Work.

16. Tell us a quick joke. Ninja wa nan-ninja?

17. How would you find a needle in a haystack? Use a metal detector.

18. Who would win a fight between a lion and tiger? A lion, according to Google.

19. What do you want to be when you grow up? I want to be a good father.

20. Do you have any words of advice for young people? Work hard, play harder.