Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Japanese-style Urban Camouflage

I read articles like this and I get frustrated because people think of the Japanese as silly and naive. At one point, Japan was known as the pioneers of technological advancement- computers, cars, robots!!! But they are potentionally hurting their reputation with some of these far fetched and silly ideas?!?

Back in the day, ninjas wore all black to disguise themselves at night. Inspired by this practical idea, a young fashion designer invented a bulky full-size vending machine costume to elude assailants! One interesting invention is the "manhole bag": when unfolded and put on the street, this purse hides valuables by disguising itself as a sewer cover. Of course, the texture could give it away and to me, if you know that you're being followed, then how and when would you have time to lay this on the street without having someone see it?

This just brings back the major difference between American and Japanese culture... Americans want to protect themselves from criminals, and strike back, while many the Japanese, who avoid confrontation and self-assertion at all costs, favor camouflage and deception. I guess we all need a bit of common sense and creativity just to be safe.

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