The Greatest is NOT Always the Most Popular

公開日: : 最終更新日:2014/04/02 English, Japanese Culture , , , , , ,

Cherry trees are in bloom in Japan.  Needless to say, this is one of the seasons when Japan becomes beautiful.



Cherry blossoms in Tokyo Midtown in Roppongi
Photo by Shin


In the article in our “2 Hours Drive From Tokyo“, my co-writer listed the best five cherry trees in Japan.  However, even cherry trees in a park whose name is not known by people outside the area are so beautiful.


Cherry trees are beautiful in full bloom.  But I think they are more beautiful when the petals are falling and scattering like a snowfall.

In fact, many singers sing a song referring scattering cherry blossoms, such as GACKT‘s “Sakura chiru (サクラ、散ル・・・)“.

Sakura, I catch a petal scattering
As if I embrace a part of your body
Tears, no matter how many times I count them
That day will not come back to me

(My original translation, lol)


I agree to the idea that cherry blossoms are beautiful.  No one will disagree to it… Maybe I’m a bit perverse.  The more people admire something, the less I get interested in…  Moreover, to tell you the truth, which I can never say out loud, I don’t like to see people eating and drinking under the cherry trees…  Cherry trees are so beautiful but the people admiring them are so disappointing. (Don’t tell anybody that I said so…)


Anyway, I think many people will agree to my idea that “What is most popular is not always the greatest.”  There are lots of people who know well about something 一番 (Ichiban), No.1, but isn’t it cool to know much about something 二番 (Niban), No.2?  It is no surprise to know much about what everybody else knows. It is too normal and it will not excite anybody. In other words, you have to know something about what everybody else does. Otherwise, you will be called an idiot.. While, on something secondary, even minimum knowledge can make you a polyhistor!


For example, the male skater who won the Gold medal in World Figure Skating Championships 2014, was Yuzuru Hanyu.  Everybody likes him and everybody talks about him.



Yuzuru Hanyu
2012-12 Final Grand Prix 3d 559 Yuzuru Hanyu.JPG


But I would like to highlight Tatsuki Machida, who won the Silver medal and who lost by a narrow margin to Yuzuru…


Tasuki Machida


If cherry blossoms are the most popular flower of spring in Japan, I would like to support Plum blossoms…  I found an interesting difference that exists between cherry blossoms and plum blossoms.  Cherry blossoms look beautiful under the sun in the blue sky.  While, plum blossoms are more beautiful in gray like cloudy sky…  Cherry would be ‘yang’ and plum would be ‘yin’ in the yin-yang principle.



Plum tree in Soga near Odawara


By the way, can you tell which are the cherry blossoms and which are the plums?




(Photos by Tomoe Hojo of 2 Hours Drive From Tokyo)


(A) is Cherry blossoms.

There are several differences between Cherry blossoms and Plum blossoms.  I’ll tell you the major three.

1. Plum blossoms don’t have any split at the end of the petals like cherry blossoms do.
2. Plum blossoms have a very fragrant smell but cherry blossoms don’t.
3. Only one Plum blossom comes out of the bud directly from the branch.  While Cherry blossoms, more than one come out of the bud.

Now you will never confuse them and you can live as a man/woman of taste, 粋 -いき- (Iki), smart or stylish!
にほんブログ村 歴史ブログ 日本の伝統・文化へ
にほんブログ村 英語ブログ 英語の日記(和英併記)へ





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