YOU KNOW YOU'VE BEEN IN JAPAN TOO LONG WHEN:

...when you think one kind of rice tastes better than another kind.

...You don't think it unusual for a truck to play "It's a Small World" when backing up.

...When in the middle of nowhere, totally surrounded by rice fields and abundant nature, you aren't surprised to find a drink vending machine with no visible means of a power supply...

...And when you think nothing of it when that lonely vending machine says 'thank you' after you buy a coke.

...You don't hesitate to put a $10 note into a vending machine.

...You really enjoy corn soup with your Big Mac.

...You think the opposite of red is white.

...you appear for your first skiing lesson with brand new Rossignol high performance racing skis and an aerodynamic racing suit with color matched goggles. And then snowplow down.

...you buy a potato-and-strawberry sandwich for lunch without cringing.

...when you squat waiting for a bus to come.

...you think the best part of TV are the commercials.

...you think cod roe spaghetti with chilled red wine is a typical Italian dish.

...you have mastered the art of simultaneous bowing and handshaking.

...you think 4 layers of wrapping is reasonable for a simple piece of merchandise.

...when you rush home from work to catch the last few minutes of sumo.

...when you think that coffee goes perfectly well with squid pizza.

...you find yourself apologizing at least three times per conversation.

...you find yourself practicing golf swings with your umbrella on the train platform.

...you buy an individually wrapped potato in the supermarket.

...you think sushi at a baseball game is perfectly normal

...your idea of a larger home is an extra 10 square meters

...you use the "slasher hand" and continuous bowing to make your way through a crowd.

...you are disappointed when Dominoes doesn't have corn pizza, and the driver is not disappointed when you forget the tip.

...back in the states for a short visit you patiently wait outside your taxi for its door to spring open for you.

...you start bowing on the telephone when you end the conversation

..Japanese words such as ne, soshite, and dakara enter your conversation

...you start wanting to drink mugi-cha and uron-cha during the summer and with dinner (barley tea and oolong tea)

...you moan over the lack of onigiri at the local 7-11 (rice balls)

Thanks to shipmate T.C. Lamson, RM3 68-70 for passing this along.

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