Welcome to Japan – What will you do first?
My name is Cameron Ohara. I make negative positive.
I am a gaikokujin (a “foreigner” or “outer person“) living in Japan. Here, I as an ‘outsider’ it’s hard not to feel like an underdog. No matter how far I sail around these red islands, I will still have orange hair and a “high nose” – and there will still be people who assume that I do not know Japan and its language, culture and norms. (Well I can’t claim to be an expert anyway!)
But I suppose we all have something that puts us outside the box; outside the norm. We are all gaijin at one point or another.
However, I believe in understanding. I believe in connecting with people on a mutual level, and understanding the world through their eyes. I believe that the looks I get from passengers on the Kagoshima Rail Line are not telling me to get out; they are asking me for an in.
Thinking in this way has allowed me to tear down the cultural barriers. In fact, I have often been told by coworkers and friends that I am “More Japanese than the Japanese!” (「日本人より日本人!」) and people sometimes ask me if I have Japanese heritage. I have come to understand Japan so well, that I even wonder if I was in fact Japanese in a previous life! Therefore the Angry Gaijin Blog’s goal is to understand Japan from Japan’s POV, and to get over the anger that comes with misunderstanding.
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I believe in the outsider, and I believe in the underdog… because I believe in myself. I believe that when you put someone down or call something stupid, you are openly admitting that you have been unable to understand. I believe that we are all gaijin at one time or another – but what does it matter? What matters is taking the negative and turning it into the positive.
And with that I bid you welcome! Please enjoy your stay at Angry Gaijin. Use your out to get in!