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September gryllus do so much
September 13, 2010 11:12 AM   Subscribe

Mr. Takai doesn’t care much for ordinary crickets. He’s a connoisseur. For the last 20 years, he’s been raising “suzumushi,” bell crickets, so that in September his knife, scissors and hardware store will ring and sing with cricket song. The song of suzumushi. A primer on Meloimorpha japonica, the 'bell cricket.'
posted by grounded (10 comments total) 11 users marked this as a favorite

The suzumushi sound would probably go very well with the sound of sharpening knives.

Also: Paging zerokey to the white courtesy phone
posted by not_on_display at 11:21 AM on September 13, 2010

Great job, Chester. You're ready for Times Square.
posted by Gator at 11:34 AM on September 13, 2010 [5 favorites]

I never knew. Now I do, and I feel richer for it. Thanks.
posted by From Bklyn at 12:09 PM on September 13, 2010

Omg, this is so cool to learn about! Thanks for the post, grounded.

I loved it at the end of that great movie, The Last Emperor, when he finds the ancient (60 year old) cricket he kept as a child. I wondered if crickets had such long lives. Apparently not. But maybe that was a Special Cricket?

The sound of the suzumushi is just like miniature bells, so charming. After learning about this critter, compelled to go a-googling: Suzumushi Temple in Kyoto, where they raise 50,000 crickets a year; at the Temple of 1000 Bells, the sound of suzumushi might not be music to everyone's ears, because the beauty of their song is only heard by those with clear, guilt-free minds . . .
posted by nickyskye at 12:11 PM on September 13, 2010 [1 favorite]

Fascinating. Now I want to help the kids build a cricket habitat in the backyard. Goodness knows we have enough of 'em around, but wouldn't it be nice to have a huge chorus?
posted by davejay at 12:13 PM on September 13, 2010

Props on the title.
posted by Navelgazer at 12:19 PM on September 13, 2010 [2 favorites]

I'll be impressed when Mr. Takai can get crickets to say, "Oh my."
posted by m@f at 12:21 PM on September 13, 2010 [2 favorites]

Those are some expensive chapulines
posted by lalochezia at 1:14 PM on September 13, 2010

I first learned about suzumushi when reading Hannibal Rising; it never occurred to me to check YouTube for a sample of their song. It's lovely.
posted by neushoorn at 5:02 PM on September 13, 2010

More crickets, Chinese this time,

Scroll down Music to
Lars FredrikssonX
Ting Qiu - Listening to Autumn

Lots of other good stuff too.
posted by jan murray at 4:38 PM on September 14, 2010

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