I have some Japanese friends who are taxi drivers. They are all cool guys and have a very dry sense of humor.
One guy's name is Takahashi and he has the driest sense of humor you'll ever hear.
One time I was drinking wiht him and he said,
"Okane ga nai kara nomanai" (I don't have any money so I can't drink). "Okane" is money. "Ga nai" means, "I have none." "Nomanai" means "I can't drink." But "Nomanai" sounds very close to "No money." "No - Ma - nai" (No money)... Get it?
Still don't get it? It's OK. I was there and I didn't get it at first either.
I didn't catch the joke and if you don't speak Japanese, you probably won't. I didn't get it because I am often dumb drunk and didn't realize he was making a play on words.
To the dim, slow or drunk (of which I was all three) It sounds like he is saying, "I have no money so I have no money."... But he is actually saying, "I have no money so I can't drink." It's a play on the sound of the words and mixes English with Japanese....
Anyway, I was riding in a taxi the other day with Takahashi san driving. We were crawling in a traffic jam due to road construction on "Meguro Dori." (Meguro Road).
Meguro Dori is one of the oldest and most well know roads in Tokyo. I guess it's been there for over 200 years...
Anyhow, we were driving down Meguro Dori and, SURPRISE! there was a ton of road construction going on! There's always tons of road construction going on on that road!
As we sat there, Takahashi slowly turned around to me, cracked a wry smile and slowly and quite cynically said,
"World War Two ended 65 years ago but construction on Meguro Dori is still going!"
I cracked up! It was really funny since, just a few minutes before we were talking about how absurd it is that people, on the one hand, think the government are all dishonest and useless, then, on the other hand, a half second later, claim that we should give more tax monies and power to the government so that they can fix the weather (Global Warming and all that nonsense!)
Ha! The government can't even fix a pothole in the road on time and under budget! How in the hell do people think they can fix the weather? Hilarious!
Here's a video of some guy riding his motorcycle and getting on Meguro Dori near my house.