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Hi, I'm Tanner. I like cloudy days and fish tanks. I have a wife and a kid. I like them as well.
Posts tagged culture
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During our one day in Kyoto I became rather infatuated with these tiny pieces of folded up paper tied to strings. The reason for my infatuation was simple: they looked pretty cool, and I’m a sucker for stuff that looks pretty cool (my wife Vicki is a perfect example of this, she is often a devil woman who will stop at nothing to steal my cozy winter cap, but she looks pretty cool, so I married her).

Anyway, my infatuation turned into an all out obsession once I learned the story behind these tiny rolled up pieces of paper. Here it is…

The various temples and shrines of Japan all sell fortunes, called Omikuji. If you draw a good Omikuji you fold that sucker back up, shove it in your pocket, and take it home and enjoy the hell out of your newfound good luck. But if you draw a bad Omikuji, well, your basically doomed, unless you follow these three simple steps…

1. Don’t freak out, play it cool! Whatever you do, definitely don’t call your mom for help, that’s pathetic. You can beat this thing.

2. Once you have your cool under control, casually begin walking around the shrine until you find a string or branch that has several other bad Omikuji tied to it.

3. Tie your Omikuji to said string or branch and run like hell (unless you have high blood pressure, if that’s the case you should probably just walk fast).

If you follow these three simple steps all is good, you have nothing to worry about. Basically what will happen is that the “Divine Spirit” will use it’s special skills to exorcise the bad luck. Think of the Divine Spirit as a big fat sponge that soaks up evil instead of water.

Anyway, I thought that was a really cool, albeit mildly terrifying, aspect of Japanese culture.

Here’s a few more pictures of some bad luck Omikuji…





Get ready for about a billion* pictures of everything and everyone in this place. Photographically speaking it was by far the highlight of my trip, and that’s saying a lot considering I spent an afternoon here.

*By a billion I really mean around fifteen or twenty.