Kimono Flea Market ICHIROYA's News Letter No. 484


I seem to look  innocent, because I cannot keep serious look. There are people who look stern and aggresive-it is always not fair. The world is full of absurdity. It seems people think I am easy to beat.

Innocent look might be considered to be good as a merchant, but it is not so simple. People consider this way: Innocent→chicken hearted→lenient. People think it is all right to be intrusive on my area where I do not like to be stepped in.

 I do not like to fight, and do not like to be too strict to our staff. However, when I become too patient, I notice there comes a certain point which I cannot bear. So sometimes there are small explosion. It must be quite surprising thing, and people find out I too have this boiling point, and have things which cannot be compromised.

I often feel a sense of affinity with penguin recently. Japanese love penquins. I did not know one fourth of penguins which are bred in the world live in Japan. This might prove our character of loving KAWAII creatures.

The above photo is a meisen kimono with very rare penguin motif. Meisen often had motifs of general interest of the time. This meisen must have been made being inspired by the great work of Antarctic observation team from Japan during 1950's.

However, I found penguins were in Japan way earlier time. In 1915, Humboldt penguins were in Ueno Zoo in Tokyo from Chile and in 1930 there came some Cape penguins from South Africa to Hanshin Park in Osaka. People must have rejoiced to see this most kawaii creatures. This meisen could be from that era.

Are penguins really innocent as they look? The way they walk reminds us of toddlers and make us smile, but are they so sweet like small children? Thier eyes look quite fierce and the way they swim is like a motorcycle gang.

If Hitchcock made another version of his movie `The Birds', penguins must be excellent.

I want to tell penguins, `Hello, Pal! We are not just cute, aren't we?'


By Chantal Steyn