Monday, March 21, 2011

New Word in Japanese Lexicon: "Fly-Jin"

This just in from regular reader, Guy Jean. There's a new word in the Japanese lexicon for 2011: "Fly-Jin". I vote for this a best new word for the year!






Akiko Fujita tweets, Learned new term tonight: "Fly-Jin." Foreigners who fled Japan.


I wrote yesterday that the Japanese are not happy - some are disgusted -by the rash actions of the foreign community. They've lost much respect for those who fled like panic stricken kids. The back lash has begun. Whispered voices filled with derision and tittering behind people's backs.



28 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hey Mike, Fly-Jin is one of the nicer terms, should hear what they are calling them in my nick of the woods.

Times like this I like to look to fat Mike for guidance:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kkrHYHqChlI

Cheers

G

Uchujin said...

Because of course Haneda and Narita weren't full of Japanese people fleeing too.....

This is disgusting.
That people who were taking the advice of their governments or making informed adult decisions to protect themselves and their families will now face even more discrimination.

Shame on you all.

(Yes I'm a foreigner and Yes I'm still in Tokyo for what its worth.

Kevin Riley said...

It's not just the Japanese that aren't happy with the Fly-Jin. Myself, I see the gaijin who come here to make money and then leave when things aren't rosy as a pack of parasites. As far as I'm concerned, the can bugger off and never pollute our island with their presence again.

Anonymous said...

So Uchujin, they made informed adult decisions to leave and you're still in Tokyo? That makes you illinformed (to say it nicely).

mikeintokyorogers said...

Thanks everybody. Mr. Uchujin, look at who sent that tweet out. It is a Japanese person, no? I am just reporting here as to what's going on... Hopefully you can speak some Japanese. If so, then open up your ears and listen to what the Japanese are saying... It's not good.

If this were the west and the foreigners couldn't speak the local tongue, they'd certainly be discriminated against... That's a fact.

Guy Jean said...

Foreign media take flak for fanning fears. A nicely alliterative headline. Marketing Japan and friends should take credit for this, no?

mikeintokyorogers said...

Thanks Guy Jean... I just spoke with my neighbor about the cola execs. She said that her husband told her that they came back and were quite embarrassed (as they should be). She also said that the Japanese staff forgave them (as she laughed)... Japanese people have such big hearts... Even though the staff have forgiven them, they'll never live this down and I'm sure will regret it in their hearts for a very long time.

Uchujin said...

Criticism of my remarks noted.
All I meant was that from the pictures of the airports and news reports I've seen there were huge numbers of Japanese fleeing too.
Of course many foreigners fled, that is undeniable.
I just think to make it a "foreigners fled but the Japanese stayed" thing is not really true.

Anonymous said...

I have many Japanese friends who fled Tokyo. This is not the time to be judgmental. Please organize and help those who need our help up north.

The Pink Cow tonight from 7 is having a fundraiser. Hope to see some of you there :)

Anonymous said...

>> "This is disgusting. That people who were taking the advice of their governments or making informed adult decisions to protect themselves and their families will now face even more discrimination."

So... knee-jerk panic over sensationalist media, without bothering to double-check online or other sources, and while leaving behind others to 'take care of things' while you run constitutes an 'informed adult decision'?

I think 'irresponsible cowardice' is more accurate.


>> "Shame on you all."

Um... no. There are proper ways and improper ways to do things - even running. The Coca Cola executives and others like them, including any Japanese who by running left others to hold the bag in their place, deserve every bit of embarrassment and scorn that they get.

Alan said...

First thing my neighbor said yesterday: "Aren't you leaving?" Answer: Of course not.

Guy Jean said...

Comment from my Japanese better half: "Many Japanese probably feel that it's natural for a non-Japanese to leave Japan at such a time. After all, they probably have somewhere called home to go to."
FWIW.

JT said...

Not surprised that even Japanese people like to call people names to make themselves feel as if they are better than others. You see this all over the internet.

Talk bad about people that traveled all the way to Japan and then were forced out by situations they cannot control. Now you demean them. I thought Japan had respect, manners and kindness for others. Or is this like the black vans I see.

Anonymous said...

JT, you're a troll.

The people who fled irresponsibly were not 'forced out' as you say. Panicked or not, they acted of their own free will, and left others hanging because of their actions.

Japanese do have respect, manners and kindness for others, and also a sense of responsibility and self-sacrifice. Example: the 'Fukushima 50'.

I have many friends and acquaintances in large corporations and government offices, and they all say that not one of their Japanese bosses fled in panic and left the rest to their fate. Do you know why?

Responsibility.

Think long and hard about that word before you bleat any more asininity.

One of the Japanese words for an executive, manager or other person in charge is 'sekininsha', which literally means 'responsible person'. These people are not just responsible for their workplaces and the people below them during fair weather; when the sh*t hits the fan, they are also expected to step up and take responsibility. That is to say, *leaders* are expected to *lead*.

In contrast, the actions of the people you are defending are nothing short of disgraceful.

Anonymous said...

Unbelievable.

Throughout tragedies and great disasters in history people have always sought out minorities and ostracized them. Something about a shared hardship that binds people together, but also turns them against those who are different. It was always a good excuse to lynch a black man in the States, and during the 1923 Tokyo earthquake it made perfect sense to go and murder Koreans.
Just looking at the posts above, it's obvious the lines are drawn.

Before you start calling people names (like children) get ahold of yourselves.

Japan isn't special. It's not a country filled with noble superheros standing to battle the flames while a horde of ratty foreigners scramble to get off the sinking ship.

There are jerks everywhere and Japan isn't immune. And anyone who dwells on petty things and pigeon-holes entire groups of people, all while trying to shift the focus off the real problem of a country that is in such great pain and try to include themselves someway, is a real Jerk.

This is not about Coca-Cola execs leaving.
This is not about you and your Tokyo vogue life.
Stop trying to make it so.

On a side note, it's interesting talking to friends back home (Canada) who say they've been seeing donations for Japan pop up all over the place. Can't say I saw the same thing here during the Haiti or Christchurch earthquakes. The world cares about you Japan, doesn't mean it revolves around you (as much as Japanese media would have you believe). Next time something bad happens somewhere else, remember to pitch in; we're all in this together.

Anonymous said...

An attractive photo of a TV news reporter is a great way to grab attention to your blog post.

Anonymous said...

This "gaijin" is proud to say that on March 13 I convinced my (Japanese) wife and "half" children to temporarily distance ourselves from a highly potential threat by taking a trip to western Japan until the situation could be rationalized. No regrets because doing so gave us the mind space and time to make sound decisions based on sound information, an action requiring time and patience as there was much media hyperbole clouding the facts. During our 4-day break we met two other families from our town in Kanagawa, both Japanese! Am I a Fly-jin? Just another pun as far as I am concerned. If Fukushima had gone Level 7, I suppose I'd be a Die-jin?

mikeintokyorogers said...

Whatever guys. Those who attack me can do so all they want. Kill the messenger boy, right? I'm sure that little old me is NOT responsible for new words in Japanese...

By the way, "if" is the middle word in "life"; If Germany won the war, if only I were a millionaire, if only.... etc. etc...

mikeintokyorogers said...

PS: Anonymous:
No charities for Haiti and Christchurch in Japan!? Oh really? Maybe if you could read Japanese then you would have seen many of them. I am hosting a huge charity for Christchurch on 4/10 in association with the Government of NZ and NZ Tourism and Japan REd Cross, and, if you read Japanese you'd have seen this campaign on Yahoo Japan, Josei Jishin, Tokyo FM and many other places... Foreigners in Japan organizing such in English language publications? No. Probably not. Didn't see you organizing it Mr. Hypocrite.
Anonymous #2: Attractive girl? Oh really? Should I have lifted another person's photo directly off of Twitter to prove to you clowns that this was Tweeted by a Japanese? And a news reporter, no less?

If you guys don't like what I blog, please go to other sites. I' m just blogging information and opinions as I see them. If you don't like it, don't come here.
I don't care.

mikeintokyorogers said...

Anonymous #4 said:

Japanese do have respect, manners and kindness for others, and also a sense of responsibility and self-sacrifice. Example: the 'Fukushima 50'.

I have many friends and acquaintances in large corporations and government offices, and they all say that not one of their Japanese bosses fled in panic and left the rest to their fate. Do you know why?

Responsibility.

Think long and hard about that word before you bleat any more asininity.

One of the Japanese words for an executive, manager or other person in charge is 'sekininsha', which literally means 'responsible person'. These people are not just responsible for their workplaces and the people below them during fair weather; when the sh*t hits the fan, they are also expected to step up and take responsibility. That is to say, *leaders* are expected to *lead*.

BRILLIANT!!!! THAN YOU!!!!!

Anonymous said...

What the Useful Idiots (uh oh, there I go calling names again) fail to understand is that there is a world of difference between getting yourself and family out of potential danger if you have the resources and inclination to do so, and running away irresponsibly at the expense of others like the Coca Cola execs and others did (i.e. lying to justify the expropriation of company funds for your escape, and leaving others you should be responsible for behind to cover your arse as you run).

I have no problem with the former, even if I think it was a knee-jerk panic reaction in this case. If you have the means to do so and your actions do not leave anyone hanging in your stead, knock yourself out. However, I do have a big problem with the latter, and will continue to criticize the actions of the Coca Cola execs and others who acted in such a cowardly and irresponsible manner.

So again, to make things as clear as possible:

If you fled in a responsible manner - that is to say within your own resources and not leaving others hanging in your stead - then I have no problem with you. I also have no problem with anyone defending those people, be they foreign or Japanese.

However, if you lied, stole, or otherwise acted irresponsibly and/or left others to potentially hang in your stead, then to hell with you. And to hell with anyone defending these scum.

Anonymous said...

I haven't paid attention to what the Japanese media (or public in general) have been saying about this particular issue so far, but thanks for bringing it to light.

I took a few days off out of town when my spouse's company offered to temporarily relocate all of its employees and cover expenses. We have a young child and I don't see a problem with that as a precaution. A number of people I know with young families did the same. On that note, the bullet train was packed with predominantly Japanese people, and so were the fully booked hotels in Kansai.

Seeing stark differences in what was being said on Japanese TV and on foreign media websites was definitely not helpful, and I think more attention should be focused on that and recovery than spreading negativity for the choices people make.

That said, Japan has been my home for more than 10 years, I call this place home, and I am glad to still be here!

Anonymous said...

Amazing, gaijin bashing gaijin.

Can gaijin community please be loyal to one another? Be understanding and supportive to one another?

It is normal to avoid a natural disaster. We certainly dont want to be a burden to Japan or our Government should something bad happen to us.

Getting pick on by another fellow gaijin is laughable. The Japanese don't find that amusing, they probably think the non-flyjins are so disloyal to their fellow countrymen that they bash them in front of their faces.

We, have a term for those Japanese who called us flyjin.

Yeah, we call them Bitjin, Bitter nihonjin.

They are lucky that up to this point nothing has happened to that nucklear plant, or the term can be much worse.

Anonymous said...

Why don't you cheapskates "pony up" and contribute some` money. All I'm reading is the blather of Japanese brats and the banter of the Ivy League Mafia brats....Money talks and bullshit walks...Give to help the people who are suffering- You can always call home and git an advance on your trust money....Tn Redneck

Geoff said...

It's ironic to see the Japanese criticize the gaijin for leaving. I live in Toronto and what did the Japanese people do when SARS broke out? They left and the Japanese government told them to leave. What did they do when a couple people had swine flu? They left and the Japanese government told them to leave. What happened when one cow was infected with mad cow disease? Japan banned Canadian beef.

The danger of those events were overblown, just like what has happened in Japan.

Seems like a case of the pot calling the kettle black if you asked me.

mikeintokyorogers said...

Geoff, so you do the same thing and you think it is a case of the kettle calling the pot black? Yes. I suppose so.
At least in the Japanese case you cited, the Japanese embassy told them to leave. In the case here, the US and UK (and Canadian) governments did not tell people to leave Tokyo. Yet they did in droves. So maybe it is different.
PS: I contend your claims on SARS. SARS broke out in HK and in China and was a bigger scare in Asia than it ever was in Canada. It is, after all, MUCH more crowded here than there.

Jason Walling said...

How many Japanese left the New Zealand earthquake Disaster? (and for the record, it was nothing compared to the life lost in the ensuing Japanese Tsunami).
This is Mother Nature! this Lady does not discriminate between anyone or THING!
Wake up to yourself!!! If you were Japanese and this happened in any other country other than your own, you would have fled. Especially if your all important government had said to do so.
I have worked in Japan for 2 1/2 years, and I survived the Tsunami, AND STAYED!!!.
I am not even going to pretend I am good enough be able to speak Japanese after this time, I am Human enough though to realise that if people are wanting to escape horror they will. Have you forgotten, or even learnt from how many people fled the Imperial Japanese War Machine?
Wake up! It is what it is, and life will always go on.
I am not afraid. I am also willing to hear from anyone for or against my statements, as I stand by them.
"My yes is my yes, and my no is my no"
jasonAwalling@hotmail.com

mikeintokyorogers said...

Thanks Jason,
My friend, you are totally missing the point. No one is talking about foreigners in the disaster area fleeing Japan. You've jumped int this conversation and don't know the entire story. Fly-Jin concerns people who fled Japan who live hundreds of kilometers away from the disaster area.... To answer your question about how many Japanese fled NZ? Specifically, the correct question - if you want to equate with Fly-jin, is "How many Japanese fled, say, Auckland after the Christ-church earthquake?" Fly-jin's are foreigners from Tokyo and as far away as Nagoya (450 kms) who fled after the earthquake.