As far as I’m concerned, Tokyo is the most exciting city in the World.
Why? Is it because of the wonderfully crazy mix of old and new? The technology? The population? The fashion? The music (come on, who doesn’t love SMAP?) The food? The fact the place never, ever sleeps?
No. It’s because the free-to-air television is just so plain awful, thereby forcing people to devise ingenious ways of avoiding it. If you look up “huh?” in the dictionary, a selection of “Nihon no terebi” highlights will be flickering up at you in glaring colours.
Every show seemed to involve either cooking or comedy. Or, if you were very lucky – “comedy cooking”.
It was like watching “Ready, Steady, Cook”, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week on 10 channels.
I have always championed the genius of Ainsley Harriet (even if it is deeply buried in a quagmire of dullness and wrapped in a thick gauze of stupidity). But even I couldn’t stand Ainsley’s brand of hilarity for more than 30 minutes a day. Japanese television has Harriet to the power of a thousand!
Despite the language barrier, there appeared to be only be 2 words you needed to know to get the most out of your viewing pleasure: “oishi” and “sugoi”. The former word means “delicious”, the latter means “amazing”. Apparently, everything was either delicious or amazing, or a combination of both. This would refer to anything from a bowl of plain rice to road kill.
Occassionally, we were given a reprieve with K1 fighting, which pits large, powerful men against other large powerful men with the victor being the last large powerful man standing. But they took it to the extreme by taking Akebono out of mothballs. He is a former Yokozuna – a Sumo grand master, part of a proud sporting tradition. However, this lumbering giant was reduced to slapping at the air while his lithe opponents fancy stepped around him. His only hope was if they tripped on their own fancy footwork, and he pinned them with the belly flop of doom.
Actually, I really miss it:(