February 20, 2015

White Day, Where Girls Get Their Due Too! (ホワイトデー Special!)

Sometimes Japan gets a lot of slack for celebrating Valentine's Day in their own special way: most girls are socially expected to buy the guys in their life (not just their husband, but their friends, neighbors, and even bosses) chocolates as a way of not only showing love, but just your ordinary everyday appreciation. Some girls go as far as making home made chocolate! If you want more information on that process, you can check out my Valentine's Day in Japan post from years past.

But Japan knows what they're doing. There's an entirely separate holiday called White Day (yep, literally called White Day even in Japanese) where the guys have to do the one way gift-giving mambo, with all NON-CHOCOLATE confections. That's right. Cookies, candy, white chocolates, marshmallows, cakes, trinkets.... jewelry... keychains... white lingerie?!

I wonder if Emiya is giving Rin a nice pair of pantsu? Let's hope not, Ilya!

Hold on, isn't this sexism thing going both ways?? How can you expect your good friend Hamada from down the block to bring you a gift of snow-white panties?! Either way, it seems any gift a girl would fancy is what a girl would expect in return for their paltry cocoa creations. Japanese are known for their courtesy and GIVING nature, so the term "sanbai gaeshi" which literally means "return threefold" is natural on White Day. "Hey Yuriko, thanks for the $50 chocolates. I bought you an iPad to return the favor!"

White Day is the perfect example of Japan following suit to American culture in terms of capitalism and merchantilization of society. White Day was INVENTED as a second Valentine's Day catered to men who wanted to repay women. Then as time went on all kind of White Day madness went down: the kind of confection for White Day also determines affection levels too! Apparently Marshmallows are equivalent to Giri choco, the stuff you give obligatory to pay back the favor. Cookies, on the other hand, are a sort of mid-tier where you show your appreciation for your current relationship with a non-lover, and want to keep it that way. But Candy. Candy means you're ready for the kind of commitment only a bonifide man-on-the-prowl would have. That's where the honmei choco lives. How do they even come up with that stuff?

And as always, the yuri pairings get their Whtie Day surprises. Honoka? Can't you see Madoka's true feelings? Hint: it's behind her back.

Would you celebrate White Day if you lived in Japan (apparently South Korea adopted this trend as well...) Let us know in the comments, and be sure to have a great February 14th, 15th, 16th, and every day after!

Can't wait for March? Amirite?


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