Even if you have not been to Japan, you heard something about this country, didn’t you? At least, you know that its capital is Tokyo and that two atomic bomb were thrown on its Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945. Another associations you may form when thinking of Japan are Samurai and Sumo warriors. Then there are also Nintendo, mount Fuji, and Buddhist shrines. But Japan is more interesting than that. Below are curious facts that you do not know about it.
There are practically no rude words in Japanese. The strongest curse you can hear from Japanese people are equivalent to English "fool" and "idiot." But this does not mean that these curses are as always as harmless as they sound to us. They might sound much ruder if shouted in a louder voice and with more derisive or angry intonation.
Japanese language has many levels of politeness: spoken polite language, polite language, respectful, and highly respectful. Most of the women communicate with the help of polite language; men talk in spoken polite language.
Japanese people have definitely an open minded attitude to pornography. Pornographic material is sold everywhere. Every off-license shop has a shelf with pornographic magazines; book stores and news agent shops have such shelves too. Japanese people's open-mindedness in sexual business led them to allow children to give their consent to sex as early as at the age of 13.
In Japan, customers in restaurants do not leave tips to waiters or cooks. Employers serving in restaurants will invariably be insulted and humiliated by extra money left to them.
If you travel to Japan in rainy weather, you will see on its streets boxes with umbrellas. These umbrellas are free. Everyone can pick them up in case of rain and shield himself or herself with it. Once the rain stops, an umbrella borrower should leave it in a nearby box for others to use, when it rains next time.
It is considered acceptable in Japanese families when siblings do not talk to each other for long time and even do not have each other's telephone numbers. It is also normal not to invite people to your house. Even if Japanese people in conversation invite to visit them any time, they do not mean the invitation literally. It is only a figure of speech, like English "see you."
Men are served first in Japan. If a couple comes to a restaurant, man makes his order before a woman. His food is brought first too. Likewise, if a couple comes to a bank, its employers first address a man and only then talk to a woman.