A Months Worth of Whinges In One

For those of you who don’t know, whinge is a British word meaning to complain about something incessantly. I’ve been bookmarking and mulling over a lot of little things for the past week or so that I was planning to post lots of little whinges, but instead I thought I’d bundle them all into one and give you twelvty-times the value. Feel free to gloss over this if the inner ramblings of an angry frugal British guy don’t really interest you.

Happy Victims should be shot and their wardrobes sold:

61rc2akpyel_ss400_An art-critic workmate of mine lent me a book today about fashion victims of Japan called “Happy Victims“. It was basically photos and interviews with a ton of Japanese people who are obsessed with a certain brand, going so far as to spend 90% of their wages each month on purchasing the latest seasons items. Some of them were rich housewives of designers, some regular office ladies working an 8am-11pm grueling hell hole of a job. I’m sure some of you are of the belief “each to his own”, and that as long as they aren’t hurting anyone we should just leave them to their clothing-fetish. Sorry, but I’m not like that. I believe passionately that humans have a moral responsibility to use their earnings responsibly, and sickens me to the heart to learn of these people wasting money on overpriced brand clothing, even if some of them are working hard for the priviledge of doing so. For the price they spend on one dress or outfit, a child could be clothed, fed and schooled until adulthood. There should be a 100% tax on brand name goods that goes straight to closing the poverty gap – that, or these people should be shot and their entire wardrobe sold, with the proceeds being used to raise some children with a hopefully higher moral imperative that collecting overpriced tat.

Pay for the priveledge of walking and running:

Last sunday my girlfriend convinced me to go to a free trial-session at a local sports club. I’m quite happy to go there for free, but I was pretty shocked at the membership prices – around 5,000 yen a month! The club had a pool, which I might have been more tempted to use if I didn’t have to wear a special cap for the purposes of hygiene. Hey, I understand cleanliness issues, but wearing a cap just sucks. It’s the reason I’ve only been swimming twice in Japan in 6 years – once is Lake Biwa in Shiga and once in a family pool that I had to travel an hour by train to get to and was packed with screaming children anyway. In England I swam every week and you don’t see me dying from some kind of hair infection. Whatever – the only real reason I would go to a sports club is for weight training anyway. But the machine room here was tiny. There was a row of walking and cycle machines, and about 2 proper weight training machines. They did a pretty bad job of convincing me to pay 5,000 yen a month for the privilege of being able to run and walk. If you really want to lose weight and get fit then start cycling to work and stop eating so damn much. Don’t waste a penny in ridiculously overpriced sports clubs. Do we really need to waste land with a building full of walking machines? Let’s destroy the sports clubs and build some green parks!

The Most Spoiled Dog in Japan:

Hey, I love dogs. And I totally respect this couples choice to raise a dog instead of adding another human virus onto the world, but this is just insane. (original via JapanProbe)

Merumo is apparently a top model in the world of doggy fashion magazines, the kind of thing that Japanese just spooge over.

  • The apartment has a special security system that won’t allow visitors to take the elevator to that floor without an invitation.
  • Merumo doesn’t like being hot, so her owner bought marble flooring for the living room. (estimated cost: 3,000,000 yen)
  • She drinks out of a silver Gucci dog bowl.
  • When leaving the house, she can ride in a Luis Vitton carry bag (236,250 yen).
  • When going for a walk, she can wear one of several brand name dog collars and leashes: Hermès (65,000 yen + 85,000 yen) or Gucci (69,300).
  • Merumo’s owner rents another room in the apartment building just to store all of Mermo’s special clothing. Merumo has a fancy kimono (80,000 yen), 10 fur coats (one costs 180,000 yen), and a whole bunch of other stuff. (Total cost: about 3,000,000 yen)

Sure, treat your pets the same as you would your own children is a pretty morally sound way to live I think, so let’s think about what she’s guilty of even if it were a spoiled little human brat. Yes, it’s her own money, and I’m sure her husband works hard for it, but does this couple have any sense of human decency?

What is it that makes these kind of people completely disregard the hardships of everyone else in the world? Are they so entrenched in their modelling / designer / financial careers that they’re blinded to their fellow man? Really, this makes me so sick. Did they actually make a concious decision when they purchased that Gucci bowl? Do they think wasting money – and let’s be in agreement here, this is wasting money – is cute? Do they actually have a severe psychological problem? Are they aware of anyone outside of their own pitiful existence? Arrrgh!


Thanks for reading if you made it this far – this isn’t my normal style, but sometimes I have to just let the rage loose,as there are things in this world are just so wrong. As ever, remember the reason you’re being frugal in your own life – to be able to help those who have been born into poverty and bad situations through no choice of their own. You however, have a choice. You can choose to not be selfish with your earnings. You can choose to purchase a no-brand shirt in lieu of that Armani one you’ve been eyeing. You can choose to be financially and ethically responsible. Act now to change the lives of those in need.

9 thoughts on “A Months Worth of Whinges In One

  1. Sports clubs are not for the rational exerciser. Studies which I have just made up show that 99% of Japanese sports club users are just trying to hook up there.

    If you want a workout without spending a ton of money, find a public gymnasium (taiikukan) or martial arts hall (budokan) in your city/prefecture. They usually cost 200 – 500 yen per visit and have all the equipment you need.

    They look much more ghetto, which is why you shouldn’t use them for nampa, but they will keep you in shape.

    Joe Jones’s latest blog post is…Horiemon was Right! The Kanji Kentei Scandal Considered

  2. Good point. Will be on the lookout, but havent seen a goverment one around my part of town. It is a very ghetto part of town though, so it’d be tough to tell it apart from the mountains of city housing….

  3. Wow~ Thanks man!

    …It appears my closest one is actually miles away though. My ward is the only one without a taikukan it seems~ doh.

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