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Dave Barry Does Japan by Dave Barry
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Dave Barry Does Japan (original 1992; edition 1993)

by Dave Barry (Author)

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7481023,464 (3.77)16
"One of the funniest peole ever to tap tap on a PC." PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER Not since George Bush's memorable dinner with the Japanese prime minister has the Land of the Rising Sun seen the likes of a goodwill ambassador like Dave Barry. Join him as he belts out oldies in a karaoke bar, marries a geriatric geisha girl, takes his first bath in public, bows to just about everyone, and explores culture shock in all its numerous humorous forms, including: Failing to Learn Japanese in Only Five Minutes (Or: "Very Much Good Morning, Sir!") ; Humor in Japan (Take My Tofu, Please!); Sports in Japan ("Yo, Batter! Loudly Make it Fly!"), and more.… (more)
Member:summerloud
Title:Dave Barry Does Japan
Authors:Dave Barry (Author)
Info:Ballantine Books (1993), Edition: Reprint, 224 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
Tags:None

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Dave Barry Does Japan by Dave Barry (1992)

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» See also 16 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 10 (next | show all)
I started out reading his book with quite a few laugh-out-loud moments. After I was about half-way through this book, it no longer seemed all that funny to me any more. I am familiar with Japan, not from traveling there, but from reading Japanese fiction and from hearing about Japan from my older son's frequent travels there. I have come to respect the Japanese culture even though it is quite different from my own. For this reason, the more I read this book, the more I became disappointed with Barry's "appreciation" of Japanese culture. It was this same reason which in the past turned me off to some of Bill Bryson's "humorous" travel writing. What's entertaining about someone poking fun at something one truly knows well is quite different than poking fun at another culture, something deeply personal. It no longer comes off as funny.

Fortunately, the chapter about Hiroshima was appropriately somber. The conclusion also hit the right notes by noting some marked differences between the American and Japanese cultures with at least a degree of respect.

This is not to disparage Dave Barry's humor. His other writing I find hilarious. This book did not sit too well with me, though. ( )
  SqueakyChu | Apr 13, 2019 |
If you've ever been to Japan, Barry will help you remember how different Japan is from the U.S. ( )
  SMBrick | Feb 25, 2018 |
Incredibly funny book about the Author's 3 week visit to Japan.
  danoomistmatiste | Jan 24, 2016 |
Incredibly funny book about the Author's 3 week visit to Japan.
  kkhambadkone | Jan 17, 2016 |
Humorist Dave Barry's account of his 1992 tourist trip to Japan. This features some of Barry's observations about Japanese culture (or the tiny little bit of it he experienced), but is mostly dominated by the usual hapless-tourist-afraid-of-eating-things-with-tentacles kind of humor. This being Dave Barry, it manages to be very funny, in any case. Well, except for the chapter where he visits Hiroshima. It's hard to make Hiroshima funny, so he is thoughtful about it, instead, without somehow making that feel like a jarring shift in tone.

When it comes to his observations on Japanese culture, though, such as they are, I am struck by how much either Japan or American perceptions of Japan have changed since this was written. I was surprised at Barry's impression: "What I'm about to say is extremely presumptuous, considering my abysmally limited knowledge of Japanese culture, but I'll say it anyway: I think Japan isn't as much fun as the United States. If countries were TV-show characters, Japan would be Sergeant Joe Friday on the old Dragnet, wearing a suit, filmed in black and white, grinding away at his job, getting just the facts." A far cry from today's stereotypes of Japan as a wacky, wacky place! ( )
  bragan | Jun 4, 2014 |
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» Add other authors (2 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Dave Barryprimary authorall editionscalculated
Beth Tondreau DesignDesignersecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Carpenter, AndyCover designersecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Wax, BillCover photographersecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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My fist impressions of the Japanese came from watching them act like raving homicidal maniacs on television.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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"One of the funniest peole ever to tap tap on a PC." PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER Not since George Bush's memorable dinner with the Japanese prime minister has the Land of the Rising Sun seen the likes of a goodwill ambassador like Dave Barry. Join him as he belts out oldies in a karaoke bar, marries a geriatric geisha girl, takes his first bath in public, bows to just about everyone, and explores culture shock in all its numerous humorous forms, including: Failing to Learn Japanese in Only Five Minutes (Or: "Very Much Good Morning, Sir!") ; Humor in Japan (Take My Tofu, Please!); Sports in Japan ("Yo, Batter! Loudly Make it Fly!"), and more.

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