Tuesday, October 25, 2005


More on Osaka's image - shaanai ne!

On Saturday, when taking kitty to the vet's, in the waiting room I saw a bit of Seyanen, a local Kansai Saturday morning program where they have a bunch of regulars who look at this week's news and chat aout it. They covered the story about Osaka getting upset about its poor image, but all the guys, all locals, just got stuck into Osaka city council for being so thin-skinned. They then went to a bunch of vox pops from various cities around Japan and asked them for their image of Osaka, and the things these people were saying were a hundred times worse than the mild rebuke from the guide books!

The people in the studio's reaction was しゃあない (shaanai), the local dialectic pronounciation for/corruption of 仕方がない (shikataganai), one of these difficult-to-translate phrases that literally means "there's no way", but is usually translated as "it can't be helped". In context, they were saying, and I agree, Osaka wouldn't be Osaka without its rough character and rough characters.

What makes Osaka negative in the eyes of the public ?
The lifestyles?
The traffic?
The environment?
The economy?
The fringe elements?
Or what?

Are the negative reports serious or sensationalized?
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