An Annoying Japanese Campaign Truck

By Donnie | Articles

Campaign Truck, Tsukuba, Japan 2010

While clearing out some space on my video camera, yet again, I found a video of a Japanese campaign truck that had parked outside of my house early (like 8:45 ish) on a December, Sunday morning (at least I think it was early December anyway). Needless to say I was getting some great sleep, and heard this loud, monotonous voice over a loudspeaker. The speaker was uttering something in Japanese that I didn’t understand. I really had no desire to understand, because I was still a bit groggy. I really just wanted the truck to drive to another neighborhood and park directly in front of somebody’s apartment who was already awake. I walked to the window to see a campaign truck, plain as day, in front of my apartment. I’m already not the biggest political buff…this didn’t help matters much. Since there was no way to stop the truck from announcing, so I just recorded it.

It’s weird, in addition to the campaign trucks, sometimes recycling trucks will roll through neighborhoods, ever so slowly (sometimes on Sunday mornings), with these blaring bullhorns on the top. The voices you hear coming from the bullhorns are quite calm, but because of the speaker volume, it can get pretty annoying. I don’t know if this happens in all areas of Japan, but it’s quite common here in Tsukuba.

I’ve gotten used to it after a while, though. I went from thinking “Shut those mother $%&#*$% bullhorns off…I’m trying to sleep!” to “I wonder how much of the Japanese I can understand.” The first time I could make out what recycling van was saying, I got pretty excited (they wanted to know if anyone had any bikes, computers, etc. that needed recycling). Truth be told, though, I am not always so open to a learning experience if I’m in the middle of some really good sleep, but I’m working on it.

Here’s a short video of the campaign truck that was right outside of my apartment:

Donald Ash

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  • Roger Starkey

    Are you sure it was a Sunday? They’re not supposed to be out on a Sunday…and never before 0800.

    If it’s a Sunday, and you can prove it from the time stamp on the video file, then I am sure that one of your local politicians would LOVE to help you take the issue to the local elections committee office 「選挙管理委員会」 because it’s a big no-no.

    FYI, that truck is blasting out “Yamanaka Taiko” of the Japan Communist Party. My experience with the JCP is that they love to push limits, so it may just be the case that you have them breaking the rules on tape here.

    If you really want to mess Ms. Yamanaka up, then find your local LDP office and go show it to them…

    BTW, I used to think these were really annoying, and I complained once to the police, where a wizened only sergeant said to me “You might come from a country where they use bombs at election time..this isn’t so bad, is it?” and that put it in a better perspective. While annoying, there are much worst things done around the world over politics.

    • Donald Ash

      Umm…actually, I could be wrong. I know it was one of my days off, but (now that you mention it) I’m off on Monday’s too. So to anyone reading, if I made a mistake on the days, I do apologize. It very well could have been a Monday. But I do know whichever day it was, it was a bit bothersome. It didn’t get to me enough to make a formal complaint, because it doesn’t happen so often, but it was irritating.

      That’s a funny story with the police officer, too. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  • Ash

    It doesn’t happen often??? I’m in Ushiku and I have at least 3 loudspeaker trucks a week drive up and down the streets of my neighbourhood at some ungodly hour blasting their horrible pointless messages about curtain rods and old computers. After the 20th time of having my sleep shattered by these morons I ran outside and threatened one of them. Didn’t do much good, but I don’t speak Japanese. I think he understood the finger however. I honestly don’t understand how this is legal in Japan. It’s insane that they don’t have any laws against ridiculous noise pollution.

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