Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Warn the town the beast is loose...

I had a heart attack yesterday. I was driving to school when I saw what every American dreads while driving: flashing lights in my rear view mirror.

So many questions went through my mind...

What did I do wrong? Was I speeding? Did I not stop long enough at the turn? Did I run over a baby?

How do I deal with this? Pull the gaijin card ("Wakari masen. Nihon ga hanasemasen")? Play dumb?("I'm sorry officer, I didn't know I couldn't do that")?

And what's worse is that I was by school. My 2 towns are so small that word would get around anyway BUT getting it just before school and next to school, well...that was just the icing on the cake.

So I turn into the next street expecting the worse. And the cop drives by! All that worrying for nothing. Turns out that in Japan, cops drive with their lights on. I have no idea how people know when to pull over but that's how they do it.

I've heard a lot of tips about surviving in Japan. A lot of the "single most important thing you should know" type advice. And I don't know if I'd say its the most important thing to know, but I' definitely would've liked to have known this sooner.

Do not freak out. In Japan, cops always drive with their lights on.


  1. lol! sure if you had ran over a baby ebbie san, it, sorry he/she, would have squeaked or something :)! This is why i don't drive all the stress just pollutes my fashionable aura:)

  2. That's the "Mobile Traffic Police" 「交通起動隊」who would be typical "rollers" in the U.S., but they roll with their lights on just to remind people to drive safely. Since I don't drive, I find it assuring to see them, since I know if there is an accident, crime, or trouble and they are coming down the way, I can flag them down. There's no need to fear them; if a police officer wants to pull you over in Japan, they'll yell at you over a loudspeaker first.

  3. I dunno how I'll survive then. I blast my music so loud I wouldn't be able to hear their screaming megaphone

  4. you gave me a mini heart attack when you said you had a heart attack...i was like..."wait, what, for real!!?" Much to my relief you LIVE!


  5. nice disney reference :)
    please watch out for pugs
    imagine what they would do to you if you ran over a pug :(

  6. I was thinking more along the lines of the Fugees song but it totally references Beauty and the Beast as well

  7. haha of course i would think of Beauty & the Beast before the Fugees