I have no idea who the top Japanese YouTuber is right now but Heraiza is the ‘it girl’, the zeitgeist of our Japanese COVID state of emergency moment. Not only is this 17 year old high schooler way smarter and wicked funnier than the tired recycled Japanese ‘tarento’ on YouTube, she’s also hyper aware of the fleetingly silly perilous nature of the floating world she inhabits. Like she says, ”it’s just YouTube…YOUTUBE!”
There are things you can only do at 17, like saying what you want with attitude and still get a free pass, things you can’t do at 20, let alone 18. Enjoy the fun while it lasts. As Heraiza san says with her trademark sign off: Te-koto!
Paul is on a real tear of great posts, his latest asks: Is this corporate embraced digital news rot? I have been dreading the coming disaster that is digital archiving for years. If you work in publishing you know what I mean. Lots of books have been lost in the migration from film to digital. When small publishers and printers go out of business or merge, plates, film, and files simply go in the dumpster. Good luck recreating the originals from scratch.
We like to think that digital is a superior way to archive the public record but the Reuters digital dumpster move here shows us it isn’t.
His take of fake corporate heroes is an excellent reminder that corporate heroes are mostly marketing. To which I would add that in the case of Carlos Ghosn, the corporate savior image was nothing but marketing, media manipulation…and good old ‘west is best’ cultural snobbery. The very same western cultural snobbery his apologists use to defend him.
There is a Japanese saying: the Buddha’s face is only seen thrice. It can also be translated as: a person can only make the face of Buddha 3 times. It’s a reference to human nature that we humans aren’t always good at being good or following rules, or obeying COVID lockdown state of emergency protocols forever. We can behave like a Buddha 3 times, after that forget it.
It’s also a warning to those in power: don’t push people too far, there are limits. This is happening now with the 3rd Tokyo State of Emergency, curtailed store hours, closed cinemas and reduced transit operating schedules are much less effective than they were the first time a year ago during Golden Week 2020. SOE 2 was less effective and SOE 1, SOE 3 feels pointless. Companies are not cutting back or reducing hours, trains are crowded, the evening before SOE 3 went into effect people rushed out to bars and restaurants. And so on.
No matter what emergency the Tokyo government announces down the road, people are not going to put on a face of the Buddha for a 4th time. What people really want is the Tokyo government to think and plan, what they are elected to do, and come up with a better long term course of action than simply hitting the same ‘state of emergency’ panic button again and again.