Japanese cafes and coffee shops explained

Why are there men sleeping in cars and cafes in the middle of a working day?

A lot of them are salesmen. As sales is about the lowest status white collar job in Japan (hence why it is one of the few jobs available to mothers returning to work) quite a few salesmen are slackers. Luckily for them, their job is out of the office where there are plenty of places for a nap as long as their wife and/or parents don’t find out. There are also examples of men being too scared to tell their wife they have lost job and so leaving for “work” everyday in shirt and tie, only to spend months killing time in a cafe. There might also be the occasional homeless guy dressed smartly so he doesn’t get moved on

Why do cafes in Japan usually not serve green tea?

Why pizza toast?

Why would people pay 500 yen for a cup of coffee in a worse for wear Renoir, when they can get a bigger cup for 300 yen just across the street?

People seem to choose their cafe to be around similar people- just try and spot how out of place a Doutor ojisan looks in Starbucks and you will see what I mean.

Why is the food in Blenz Coffee so awful?

Because it’s Canadian??


  1. nnnn said,

    October 8, 2009 at 8:02 am

    Blenz is Canadian? Funny… we don’t actually have that chain in Canada…

  2. alexcase said,

    October 8, 2009 at 9:07 am

    I wasn’t only going on the maple syrup flavoured everything for that, someone did tell me. Now if only I could remember who…

  3. alexcase said,

    October 8, 2009 at 9:08 am

    Now why did either of us comment without googling first??


  4. nnnn said,

    October 8, 2009 at 1:33 pm

    hmmm… I see. It is a small chain with only six locations and all within the greater Vancouver area. Explains why I’ve never heard of it before despite having extensively travelled in Canada and lived there for 30 odd years. There are much more famous, better and widespread coffee chains than Blenz!! I, for one, really wish a Tim Horton’s would open up soon!

  5. catandpillar said,

    March 6, 2015 at 10:29 am

    > Why do cafes in Japan usually not serve green tea?
    Because coffee and green tea belong to different cultural contexts in Japan.

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