This one is going to be a short interlude to my travel and work blogs, but I really wanted to show some of you a few of these Japanese Etiquette things I found out the other day through a cultural "lesson" (if you will)... and I had no idea about.
Before I show you though...
Please don't think that Japanese people actually do this on a daily basis. Seriously. Literally every Japanese person who was listening to this cultural talk said they either don't care to do this, or didn't even know it existed.
Don't "Marie Kondo" & "Japanese Forest Bathing" mainstream this sh*t.
Because this is not a common thing!
Splitting Open Some Disposal Chopsticks
Everyone's probably heard of the "don't rub your chopsticks together to get rid of splinters" or the "don't stab your chopsticks into their rice" thing...
But, did you know that there's also a mannered way to split open your chopsticks?
If you watch this video, you will see that it's actually bad manners to rip open your chopsticks when it's vertical and your hands going sideways.
Apparently you open it when the chopstick is on its side, so that you don't potentially hit the person sitting next to you with your arms or I guess... chopstick bits? It was interesting. I honestly had no idea this was even a thing
Opening Your Soup/Rice Bowl
There's also a way to open your bowl (usually a rice bowl, or a miso soup soup bowl) that's considered mannered and good etiquette.
You should never leave the lid down on the table with the inside down. That's considered bad manners as it may leave watermarks on the table. Always leave it facing up after you opened it, and place it on your right side.
To open, pinch the sides a little if it's stuck and turn it slightly.
Before you lift the whole thing up, let the lid hover a little and tilt it to the side to let the condensation inside of the lid to drip down. Then place it on the right side of your bowl. When you are finished, cover it the way you found it. Don't close it with the insides facing outwards. That is considered not good,
Picking Up Your Bowl & Chopsticks
Apparently you shouldn't be picking up your bowl and chopsticks at the same time with each hand. There are steps to good manners! You're suppose to pick up your bowl first, then use the same hand to pick up the ends of your chopstick, before transferring it to your other hand - like this video below demonstrates:
I don't know how I feel... if I've eaten with the chopstick already, it means one of my hands will be touching the part where I food touched. Even if it's not exactly the part it touches the food, I would still not feel so comfortable with this.
Dipping Your Sushi
This one I knew about, since there was a youtube video of a sushi master talking about this. So I feel like a lot of you know about this too. Essentially, you're suppose to dip your sushi with the sashimi side, not the rice side.
I was talking with my Japanese colleagues about this, and she said she never did this. She loves just having sauce on the rice. Haha. I concur. Give me all that salty soy sauce!!
What are some etiquettes in Japanese dining that you know? What do you think of them? Strange, or do they make some sense? Different?