Friday, December 23, 2022

Japanese Etiquette Shines at World Cup

Etiquipedia feels it’s a sad commentary on sporting fans that every few years, news articles about the cleanliness of Japanese fans (and Japanese athletes in the locker rooms!) cleaning up their area of the stands, can cause such astonishment on social media. — “Japanese fans STILL clean up the stadium after their match despite the heartbreak of seeing their side lose 3-2 in the last minute” - Mail Online

In 2015, Online Magazine Tone Deaf printed these headlines “The Aftermath Of This Aussie Music Festival Last Weekend Is Revolting”. Why? Aussies failed in a big way to clean up their rubbish after weekend long festivals leaving the environment not as they found it. A significant contrast to the fans and players at the 2022 FIFA World Cup held in Qatar.

MailOnline wrote: “Japanese fans STILL clean up the stadium after their match despite the heartbreak of seeing their side lose 3-2 in the last minute”. It is simply amazing to see a country's people to be tidy, neat and clean and even after defeat. What propels this nation to be so environmentally conscience and stand out from the crowd?

It has been said that cleanliness in Japan was noted in historical texts pertaining to the government in the book called the Engishiki - Procedures of the Engi Era. A book written about 927 A.D. about the laws and customs that governed people of that time period. These volumized works spoke about religious practices, governance and regulations.

Generated over time came practices from palaces, Buddhist temples and Shinto shrines, and everyday households in December and January devoted to cleaning the house in readiness for the new year and the positive things it may bring. Noted observations from Sir Rutherford Alcock, the first British diplomatic representative to live in Japan, the son of the physician and himself a surgeon discovered whilst serving in Japan from 1858, that the Japanese favoured order and relished cleanliness. This would have tickled the diplomats fancy understanding a correlation between cleanliness and the body.

From childhood, the Japanese are trained at school age. They are not only taught that cleaning is essential but it is also practised in class as a daily routine. Children must clean, dust and pick up litter daily and weekly. The result is homes and businesses being kept clean. Not only are the children involved, but prefectures throughout Japan will have selected days for their citizens to do a clean-up day, not only to tidy up, but to act as a bonding experience for its residents. 

Homeowners, in the early mornings from 7 am onwards, will be seen brushing up leaves to keep the streets presentable, and at the end of a long hard day, a truckie's job is to wash down their truck meticulously, to be shine for the subsequent day of work ahead. 

 The Shinkansen, the name of the famous Japanese bullet train, has a specialised cleaning time called the TESSI. Their crack team can scrupulously clean and prep each train in seven minutes from start to finish. So, the Japanese are sticklers for cleanliness and order.

After Japan’s defeat to Belgium, media took snapshots of the Japanese fans consciously picking up discarded fan paraphernalia and food wrappers and placing them in a blue rubbish liners, cleaning the stadium, not even waiting for other fans to leave as they walked up and down the aisles. These snaps of fans cleaning before departing, naturally
 went viral to an astonished world of social media . Even though the Japanese soccer team lost, Japan can be proud of fans and players alike for their excellent attitude. — By Etiquipedia Contributor Elizabeth Soos

For many years, Etiquipedia contributor, Elizabeth Soos, has had a keen interest in cultural customs. With her European background and extensive travel, Soos developed an interest in the many forms of respect and cultural expectations in the countries she has visited. With her 20 years’ experience in customer service within private international companies based in Australia, and her lifetime interest in manners and research, she decided to branch out into the field of etiquette and deportment. Through her self-directed studies and by completing the Train-The-Trainer’s course offered by Emma Dupont’s School of Etiquette in London and by Guillaume Rue de Bernadac at Academie de Bernadac based in Paris and Shanghai, she founded Auersmont School of Etiquette.

🍽️Etiquette Enthusiast, Maura J Graber, is the Site Editor for the Etiquipedia© Etiquette Encyclopedia

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