Markets in everything; the culture that is Japanese

by on July 14, 2009 at 4:47 am in Economics | Permalink

This year Japan has gone konkatsu-crazy, with the trend spawning countless magazine articles, a weekly TV drama and a best-selling book.

A Tokyo shrine now offers konkatsu prayer services, a Hokkaido baseball
team has set up special seats for those looking for mates, and a Tokyo
ward office arranges dating excursions to restaurants and aquariums.

A lingerie maker has even come up with a konkatsu bra with a ticking clock that can be stopped by inserting an engagement ring.

Here is much moreI thank KunLung Wu for the pointer.

1 david July 14, 2009 at 5:28 am

MR needs a better spam filter.

Anyway, from the WSJ:

Experts say that in tough times, single women feel an urgency to get married for financial stability, while men tend to put off marriage until they feel they can afford it. The konkatsu buzz has coincided with companies’ move to shed employees during the recession.

Yuriko Akamatsu, a 35-year-old office worker, has attended two matchmaking parties in the past six months. “I want to get married because I sometimes feel like quitting my job,” said Ms. Akamatsu, who didn’t find Mr. Right at either party. “Marriage is like permanent employment.”

Since October, Imado Shrine in Tokyo has held a prayer service for single men and women seeking good luck in marriage. The service, followed by a tea party, costs 6,000 yen ($62). Hundreds of women apply for a limited number of seats each time, but the shrine’s Web site says, “We’re short of men.”

Any speculation on this asymmetry?

2 Andy July 14, 2009 at 10:12 am

I don’t know, I’d definitely go for the baseball-dating thing (if I was single and lived in Japan). It sounds pretty good. Sort of surprising that it took so long for the 50 seats to fill up.

3 Doc Merlin July 14, 2009 at 12:45 pm

Its not unexpected, as what do men have to gain from such a relationship?

4 Taeyoung July 14, 2009 at 1:23 pm

a weekly TV drama

It’s already over — ended a week or two ago, if it’s the one I’m thinking of. “Miniseries” is a better term for most Japanese TV dramas than “weekly TV drama,” given that they wrap up their storyline after 10 or 11 episodes, most of the time.

A lingerie maker has even come up with a konkatsu bra with a ticking clock that can be stopped by inserting an engagement ring.

This one’s just cruel.

5 Anon July 14, 2009 at 7:38 pm

Doc, have you not ever got on THAT well with someone that you have to ask such a simple question? Some people are awesome and you want to be around them your whole life. Other people are selfish and they can stay alone. Everybody wins!

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