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This is so stupid it's actually...
March 15, 2007 11:45 AM   Subscribe

Discovery [youtube] Anyone who's ever been to Tokyo or any other big city on Earth knows how hard it is to navigate crowded, narrow sidewalks, especially when you have to "take a dump."
posted by KokuRyu (61 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

 
That is awesome!
posted by parmanparman at 11:53 AM on March 15, 2007


Do I have to understand Japanese to get this?
posted by DU at 11:55 AM on March 15, 2007


Please to explain what in hells is this.
posted by Pastabagel at 11:57 AM on March 15, 2007


Nope. You don't have to understand Japanese. No bell, can't move forward. Ring bell, and people part in front of you. This probably works well in Japan because people usually ride bicycles on the sidewalk, and warn people to get out of the way by ringing the bike bell.

Basically, this youtube link is just supposed to be stupid. Nothing else going on.
posted by KokuRyu at 11:57 AM on March 15, 2007


i don't think you finished the joke in your headline
posted by spicynuts at 11:58 AM on March 15, 2007


Ahahahahahahaha! People walking leisurely along a busy street where bicycles are allowed to travel hear the polite jingle of a bicycle bell and leisurely move aside to let the obviously polite cyclist pass. Then -- OMIGOD!!! IT'S NOT A CYCLIST! It's another pedestrian with (mmmmpppph!) a BICYCLE BELL IN HIS HAND! (Mpppphhhh... BWAAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHA!) Oh, my holy rolling Lord-of-all-that-is-funny! Omigod omigod omiGAWD!

Those cleverly inscrutable Japanese have surely set a new benchmark for humouressness... ish... osity. Can a FOX reality show be far behind? Wait for it: BICYCLE BELLS GONE WILD!
posted by Mike D at 12:09 PM on March 15, 2007


I'm going to try this in Germany. Of course, then I will get yelled at: "Arschloch! Hier ist fussweg!!"
posted by chillmost at 12:09 PM on March 15, 2007 [2 favorites]


This probably works well in Japan because...

...Japan, like many modern countries, is peopled with human beings, who tend to move look behind and move aside when they hear someone approaching them.
posted by DU at 12:10 PM on March 15, 2007


This effect works much better with an air horn.
posted by fandango_matt at 12:15 PM on March 15, 2007


People in Tokyo are notoriously passive in the face of virtually all forms of public displays of rudeness. I won't link to the video where the couple rides around in a van then jumps out at crowded intersections and proceed to copulate nude in front of everyone. Most all of the passers-by try to pretend not to notice.
posted by Burhanistan at 12:16 PM on March 15, 2007


How about a cattle prod? I bet it would work really well with a cattle prod. Or an uzi.
posted by spicynuts at 12:16 PM on March 15, 2007


I won't link to the video where the couple rides around in a van then jumps out at crowded intersections and proceed to copulate nude in front of everyone.

WHY THE HELL NOT?????
posted by spicynuts at 12:17 PM on March 15, 2007 [5 favorites]


BOTW?
posted by winks007 at 12:24 PM on March 15, 2007


I totally have to try this.
posted by gomichild at 12:27 PM on March 15, 2007


This thread is useless without Burhanistan's video.
posted by schmedeman at 12:30 PM on March 15, 2007


I've seen that. On 4chan I think. There are several of them though.
posted by puke & cry at 12:35 PM on March 15, 2007


The best part is the escalator and the grocery store. The video would be even better if it focused on doing this in places where bikes would be unexpected.
posted by lyam at 12:35 PM on March 15, 2007


This Japan in which people move when hearing a bicycle bell comes as a complete surprise to me. I was unaware that such a Japan existed. In the Japan in which I lived, I don't believe that the bell on my bicycle encouraged a single pedestrian to move, look behind them, or in any way indicate their awareness that a large gaijin was hurtling towards them on a rapidly moving two-wheeled conveyance, and I was under the impression that that Japan was the only Japan there is.
posted by Faint of Butt at 12:38 PM on March 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


he video would be even better if it focused on doing this in places where bikes would be unexpected.
posted by lyam


I was thinking that as well. The person behind the camera was clearly playing off of the near Pavlovian response of people to the bell. Their urge to get out of the way is so ingrained in their reflex memory that it's almost instinctual.

And just imagine the video I mentioned previously-- your imagination is probably more interesting than the actual thing.
posted by Burhanistan at 12:38 PM on March 15, 2007


My favorite part is where the guy rings the bell.
posted by jefbla at 12:42 PM on March 15, 2007 [3 favorites]


And just imagine the video I mentioned previously-- your imagination is probably more interesting than the actual thing.

If people's imaginations were more interesting than the real thing, there would be no porn industry. Possibly, there would be no sex. NOW QUIT THE OBFUSCATION AND GIVE US THE VIDEO!
posted by spicynuts at 12:47 PM on March 15, 2007


MetaFilter: QUIT THE OBFUSCATION AND GIVE US THE VIDEO!
posted by fandango_matt at 12:48 PM on March 15, 2007


Not quite it but here ya go. (nsfw, obviously)
posted by puke & cry at 12:51 PM on March 15, 2007 [2 favorites]


BOTW. Definitely.
posted by nonliteral at 12:52 PM on March 15, 2007


It moves aside or else it gets the bell again.
posted by katillathehun at 12:54 PM on March 15, 2007


Thanks Puke&Cry. And sorry I got a little out of hand up there...it's just that I was left without an outlet for my frustration when Mathowie used the term 'iraq bukkake' and then closed the thread, thus denying me an opportunity to riff on 'iraq bukkake' ad nauseum. I had to channel that energy somehow.
posted by spicynuts at 12:58 PM on March 15, 2007


I like it better when they just scream.
posted by miss lynnster at 1:03 PM on March 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


After a three day ferry ride from Hokkaido to Tokyo I found myself in the disoriented, and sleep deprived in the midst of rush hour Tokyo with an impending case of the trots. I thought I was going to explode and even went so far as to steal a painters rag that I was going to use in lieu of t.p if I could just find a secluded spot (in the middle of Tokyo) to poop. Never in my entire life have I been so happy to see the welcoming Golden Arches of McDonalds :) Sweet sweet relief.
posted by zeoslap at 1:06 PM on March 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


If the guy doesn't have a raw pork chop strapped to his head, I'm not watching.
posted by The Straightener at 1:15 PM on March 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


KokuRyu "took a dump."
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 1:24 PM on March 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


Pavlov's something or other.
posted by ericb at 1:28 PM on March 15, 2007


This reminds me of a story told by my uncle (although possibly an urban legend):

He was playing in the citywide junior high hockey final or something, and one of his teammates got a breakaway and was about to score.

Apparently, someone in the audience yelled "CAR!" and play stopped completely. One of the goalies may have even gone to move his net.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 1:31 PM on March 15, 2007 [5 favorites]


I don't know why, but every time he rings that bell, I start drooling.
posted by Astro Zombie at 1:35 PM on March 15, 2007 [2 favorites]


What's the deal with the linked url? There's a bunch of stuff tacked on at the end.
posted by MrMoonPie at 1:51 PM on March 15, 2007


What's the deal with the linked url? There's a bunch of stuff tacked on at the end.

I dunno...I just took the link as-is.
posted by KokuRyu at 1:52 PM on March 15, 2007


*pours glass of water over Astro Zombie's head*

Now, what's this about a bell?
posted by Smart Dalek at 1:54 PM on March 15, 2007


What's the deal with the linked url? There's a bunch of stuff tacked on at the end.

That's the URL he got the video from. Whenever you go to that URL and click the video to get to the youtube page, you'll see it tack on the URL to the end. Actually, it doesn't matter what you put after "http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lnL4fjMzsSU" if you append "&eurl=" to that you can put whatever you want, like a cute little message.
posted by puke & cry at 2:10 PM on March 15, 2007 [2 favorites]


Where does Flapjax find the time?
posted by itchylick at 2:13 PM on March 15, 2007


Dave Berg, of Mad Magazine's Lighter Side Of..., once did a strip using a similar trope - a couple want to get to the front of a big line so the man gets out a charity can (you know, with a slit in the lid so it can accept money) and starts asking for donations. The crowd parts like the Red Sea before Moses.

Yeah. It was funny. I've always wanted to try that.

What were we talking about?
posted by lekvar at 2:19 PM on March 15, 2007


Does omosekushuaru mo mean what I think it means?
posted by languagehat at 2:23 PM on March 15, 2007


Is "take a dump" a euphemism for something?
posted by gottabefunky at 2:27 PM on March 15, 2007


Econus: If you dislike the thread so much, flag it for the moderators. Or make fun of it in the wittiest, most sarcastic way possible. However, your response in this instance is inappropriate, and unkind. I realize that Metafilter is supposed to represent "the best of the Web," but sometimes it's going to be hit-and-miss. On Metafilter, merciless teasing is the best way to correct someone's behavior. Being a troll is not.

As for the "taking a dump," it was a mistranslation on my part. The guy says something like "unko shinikui". Unko can mean poo in Japanese. In another youtube post he talks about poo, so I thought he was doing the same thing in this instance. However, after reviewing the video, I realized he was saying "it's hard to move (when the sidewalks are so crowded)." "Unko" also means to move, navigate, proceed.
posted by KokuRyu at 2:41 PM on March 15, 2007


ugoku 動く means to move; to stir; to shift; to shake; to swing; to operate; to run; to go; to work;
posted by gen at 3:03 PM on March 15, 2007


Yeah, but he says "運行" (unko) in that particular case, not "動く"
posted by KokuRyu at 3:10 PM on March 15, 2007


I'll be right back, I need to have a bowel unko.
posted by tehloki at 3:15 PM on March 15, 2007


Ainiku, amari omoshiroku arimasen deshita.
posted by martinrebas at 3:19 PM on March 15, 2007


That would've been totally handy in Taibei. I mostly ended up using my umbrella.

...

"Even works on homosexuals!" Kinda offensive.
posted by jiawen at 3:29 PM on March 15, 2007


Oh, god. I didn't catch that.
posted by KokuRyu at 3:35 PM on March 15, 2007


Yeah, and right after the homosexual bit he says, "And professional killers, too" (殺し屋).

Whether in Japan or in America, people move when they hear a bell and notice someone behind them. I dodge them every day on my commute -- and they're going about 50 kph, not 6-7 like they tend to in Tokyo. And for any of you who have ever been to Tokyo may know, once you've been hit by a bicycle, you move the hell out of the way when you hear someone ring a bell from then on.
posted by armage at 4:19 PM on March 15, 2007


In Toronto when I'm driving, I like the bells making me aware of bikers, if I haven't seen them already. Likewise, when I ride a bike I return the courtesy.

However, on a sidewalk. No way. Get your bike on the road where it belongs. If you're too scared to ride on the road, walk on the sidewalk.

However, all is truly forgiven when that unstoppable force is making its unstoppable demands. It's particularly unstoppable the closer you get to a "release facility."
posted by juiceCake at 4:49 PM on March 15, 2007


Pavlov and nasty subtext aside, I found it interesting that the pedestrians moved both left and right to get out of the way of the approaching bell-ringer; here in central Japan they still move unfailingly to the left...even when there is barely any room to do so.

Perhaps it's like the regional differences in miso soup recipes? I live in a red miso town but I prefer white miso...guess I'll always be a rebel.
posted by squasha at 4:59 PM on March 15, 2007


Thanks, puke & cry. Now that's BOTW!
posted by winks007 at 5:03 PM on March 15, 2007


[excessive thread shitting removed; if it was performance art, I half apologize. you all know where metatalk, the flagging feature and the "email" button are]
posted by jessamyn at 6:05 PM on March 15, 2007


I won't link to the video where the couple rides around in a van then jumps out at crowded intersections and proceed to copulate nude in front of everyone. Most all of the passers-by try to pretend not to notice.

This is quite a burgeoning porn subgenre in Japan these days -- guerrilla sex/nudity on subways, in shops, on the street, with random passerby trying to ignore it, staring in fascination, or as often, snapping pics with their camera phones. I find it... fascinating. I will not speak more about how I know about this.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 7:00 PM on March 15, 2007


stavros, you incorrigible tease.
posted by lekvar at 7:15 PM on March 15, 2007


Why do Japanese and other tourists unlearn this jumping away at a ringing sound behaviour the moment they get to Amsterdam?

In a game of chicken between a bicycle rider and a pedestrian, even on a bicycle path, both participants (unwitting or not) lose.
posted by LanTao at 8:08 PM on March 15, 2007


NYC sidewalks are becoming really packed. Wonder if it would work here? handy...
posted by nickyskye at 8:34 PM on March 15, 2007


ps, puke & cry, that was a totally hilarious video! Thanks.
posted by nickyskye at 8:58 PM on March 15, 2007


"Even works on homosexuals!" Kinda offensive.

I don't know, I laughed, and I'm one of them homosexuals. I'm glad I'm being included as being someone who understands that a bell means get the hell out of the way. I think if they didn't say it works on homosexuals, I might be offended and have to call in GLAAD.
posted by taursir at 10:17 PM on March 15, 2007


In a game of chicken between a bicycle rider and a pedestrian, even on a bicycle path, both participants (unwitting or not) lose.

In my NL experience that is simply not the case. On pedestrian streets / sidewalks, the walkers are king. On bike paths, bikes are king.

If/when a bike hits a ped in a pedestrian area, the cyclist is in big trouble.
posted by Meatbomb at 10:21 PM on March 15, 2007


Well, for all the poo-pooing in this thread, I personally like it. Not so much in the "that's so funny" sense, but, as the narrator in the video says, "Many years have passed since the invention of the bicycle bell; why hasn't it occurred to us to use it like this until now?"

Maybe it's because I lived in Shibuya for 6 years, and I was stuck behind folks like this every single day, but for me this was less a "wacky comedy link" and more of a LifeHacker link or the like: a useful, simple idea to make life easier.

Faint of Butt writes "This Japan in which people move when hearing a bicycle bell comes as a complete surprise to me. I was unaware that such a Japan existed. In the Japan in which I lived, I don't believe that the bell on my bicycle encouraged a single pedestrian to move, look behind them, or in any way indicate their awareness that a large gaijin was hurtling towards them on a rapidly moving two-wheeled conveyance, and I was under the impression that that Japan was the only Japan there is."

In the Japan in which I have lived, the bell on my bicycle has always encouraged pedestrians to move out of the way, and I, like you, was under the impression that that Japan was the only Japan there is. So, we're both experiencing Japan, both convinced that our impression of Japan is accurate, but our impressions are directly opposite of eachothers'.

I think the problem is in the word "hurtling". I hypothesize that it's something like this: From your point of view, they didn't respond at all.
From their point of view, they had plenty of time left in which to respond, so they just hadn't responded yet.

That might explain the Amsterdam cyclist / Japanese pedestrian problem as well. Sidewalks are crowded here in Japan, and most bicycling is done on sidewalks, so the average cycling speed is slow. As such, Japanese (and folks like me who've lived here a long time) have a pavlovian response to a bicycling bell to "move out of the way", not a response to "leap immediately out of the way".
posted by Bugbread at 11:18 PM on March 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


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