For Best Results, Stay Indoors

Shimonoseki- Raincut Machine

Without a doubt, cruelty.  The silhouette of a woman placing an (her?) umbrella in a shredder- it’s even shed a bead of sweat.

Although that may have been the subject of a recent dream, the truth is much less malicious.  This device, called a “Raincut,” was located by one of the entrances of the Kaikyou Yume Tower (海峡ゆめタワー), the tallest building in Shimonoseki, Japan.  I removed the lid (it came with a lightweight lid) to show that it looks more like an apparatus to create an ehem, conical pizza bagel than one adept at ridding umbrellas of raindrops.  I didn’t mention the word dry, though the Japanese instructions read as follows:

  1. Open the umbrella ( kasa) and lightly insert/push it (into the hole).  -Already I have my misgivings-
  2. When the green light turns off, remove the umbrella.
  3. This machine is a dryer (it removes water), but it’s not a dryer (as in, where you’d place wet clothes/money/marbles).

I never seem to have carry an umbrella with me in Japan (instead, I find cardboard boxes or real estate magazines) so I couldn’t try it out, lawfully, but I noticed that it just spins- what did you expect?- might it be as useless as the plastic bags commonly found in Japanese lobbies?  If it’s still raining when you leave, either your umbrella will return to being a victim of rainy weather, or you’ll have a wet plastic bag with you for a long time (no kidding), because rubbish bins in Japan have the same rate of natural increase as the population they serve.  They are both nice thoughts though, to try and avoid turning buildings into water parks.  Moreover, would you be embarrassed to test out a Raincut?  Part of me reckons it’s claptrap, merely another addition to the long list of impractically useful inventions called chindogu.  What do you all in the audience think?

This entry was posted in East & Southeast Asia, Human Nature, Japan and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to For Best Results, Stay Indoors

  1. Hi! I just LOVE your blog! I found the link in linkedin … we are in the same group. My eldest daughter, Tasha worked and lived Japan for four years and is also married to a Japanese boy Kaz. I really enjoyed visiting japan. It is amazing but i got lost so much! I stayed first in Tokyo and then we hired a car and drove down to Kushu (think I’ve spelt it right!) at the very bottom. SO different. Really beautiful. Your post on the toilets really brought back memories! I can remember trying out all the buttons before I dare use it to see what happened!!
    I blog avidly too! Every time I travel but also I have an ongoing one.
    My Facebook page is.
    I do hope you will visit them and maybe follow me. I will def. follow yours.
    Could do with some more likes on my page too … Maybe you can share!

  2. TonyJ2 says:

    I think I will stick to just shaking my umbrella. If I used one! I stick to the good old ’emergency poncho” plastic raincoat that I take everywhere. In fact I bought it in a cheap shop in some town in Japan I no forget, but it has lasted 3 trips so far.

    • As a kid I liked ponchos, but then they became rather inconvenient when I started taking pictures of everything (umbrella dryers and rubbish bins included), not to mention if it was windy, the hood would always win!

      Also, if you happen by one of those ¥100 shops, cheap umbrellas can be found. Possibly at Don Quixote stores too.

  3. Pingback: During My Last Visit to Japan, I Had Poisonous Fish « buildingmybento


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