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Children’s Day

May 28, 2011

May 5 is Children's Day in Japan, when families celebrate the healthy growth and happiness of children. It became a national holiday in 1948, but it has been a day of celebration in the Asian country since ancient times.

The Facts

In ancient Japanese times, the fifth day of the fifth month was traditionally called Tango no Sekku and was a festival for boys only. Girls had their own festival, called Hina Matsuri (Doll Festival), held on the third day of the third month.

Today Children's Day families with boys fly huge carp-shaped streamers (koinobori) outside the house and display dolls of famous warriors and other heroes inside. The carp was chosen because it symbolizes strength and success; according to a Chinese legend, a carp swam upstream to become a dragon.

In recent years, as more people have moved into apartments and smaller houses, the carp streamers have also gotten smaller, and there are now miniature versions that decorate the indoors.

Also on this day, families often take baths sprinkled with iris leaves and roots. This is because the iris is thought to promote good health and ward off evil. Rice cakes wrapped in oak leaves and filled with sweet bean paste, called kashiwamochi, are also eaten.

The Scene

On May 5 of each year, events highlighting children are held throughout the country of Japan. At the National Kasumigaoka Stadium in Tokyo, tens of thousands of children and their parents participate in a Kids' Olympics. It has the look and feel of the real thing, since the National Kasumigaoka Stadium was the main arena for the 1964 Olympic Games in Tokyo. It even features a torch relay, and there are races for parents and kids in different age groups.

Many activities involve the arts. At the Yokohama Noh Theater one year, a kyogen recital was held that featured 18 young actors. The youngest of them was a second grader and the oldest was in the seventh grade.

Kyogen is a type of comic theater that was founded around 600 years ago and is performed with traditional costumes and a distinctive acting style. The kids had been attending practices once or twice a week since the summer of 1996 to learn the unique comic expressions, movements, and uses of the fan. One of the pieces performed was called Shibiri, in which a servant claims he can't run an errand for his master because every time he tries to do so his leg falls asleep.

The theater was packed with parents and friends, who not only enjoyed the humorous pieces but were also extremely impressed with the kids' convincing performances.

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drowning
drowning posted in Debating:
It's questions like this that make me lose a little more hope in humanity as each day passes by.
reply about 3 hours
cubicfairy
Kawaii Chan P.O.V Kawaii waited at the bus stop after leaving the house, only just hearing what Katelyn said, she was tempted to go back and finish the cupcake... No, she had to see Zane. The bus came and she went in "where you goin' today sugar?" Kawaii Chan smiled at the man "kawaii Chan is going to the hospital" she said, giving the man a few dollars "please take a seat" kawaii Chan nodded as the bus driver tipped his hat at her, and they started up the road Zane P.O.V Zane felt the wheel chair go over a bump and into the air-conditioned hospital, he shivered, hearing doctors speak, kids crying and adults grunting, groaning and moaning made him nervous, thinking he had to look proper, he sat up straight, instantly regretting it, his back cracked and the nurse laughed "you know, you don't have to be fancy to be at a hospital, right?" Zane sighed "well it sure felt that way" the nurse laughed again, not responding though, then he heard running footsteps behind him, slightly screaming, then a voice "Zane kun!" He realised who it was, "k-kawaii Chan?" Kawaii Chan laughed "of course it's kawaii Chan, silly!" He bit his lip "okay.." he felt himself going over another bump, probably his hospital room, "uh, Zane, you'll need to get up to get on the bed, though you can't see, you think you'll be alright?" Zane shook his head "no" someone took his hand "kawaii Chan can help!" He realised kawaii Chan holding his hand, but he knew he was okay, it was kawaii Chan, he would be safe with her, he realised he was muttering "miss, you're blushing, are you alright?" The nurse said, and kawaii Chan giggled "I'm okay"
reply about 4 hours
AlphaT
AlphaT posted in Say Anything:
"Ritterkreuz" wrote: I would become president of Israel and enforce an open borders policy to culturally enrich the land. Their walls are too great to be broken in one day, plebe.
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XxRuby_PhoenixxX
America.
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Shadeleaf
Shadeleaf posted in Debating:
"boredlol" wrote: First there will be the Rapture. Then the ########## will sign a seven year treaty with Israel. When the ########## signs the treaty, the start of the Tribulation will commence. Then will begin the judgments. When three and a half years pass, the great Tribulation will start. After three and a half more years, the Lord will descend from the heavens. The earth will be destroyed and and new, perfect world will be created by the Lord. You can read about this in the book of Revelation. A really interesting book series I read is based on this. It's called Left Behind. There is Left Behind the kids and Left Behind (adults). Left Behind the kids is the story of four teenagers. Left Behind is the story of adults. I read the whole fifty book kids series twice. I'm in the middle of reading the sixteen book adult series. The kids series is more for teens and teens. As for the adult series, twe######d teens can probably read it, but you can decide. The adult series is more graphic, but still good nonetheless. Sorry for doing this super long post. Bye! Ohhhh I love that series! Anyways,  I should say this is how I imagined the Apocalypse, the End of Days, Armeggedon.
reply about 8 hours