Home > My diaries > You’ll know what exactly is ‘Something like a crowbar’ like

You’ll know what exactly is ‘Something like a crowbar’ like

The 22nd Canary English Rakugo Recital was held on Saturday, March 23, 2013, in Oedo Ryogokutei, Tokyo.

(I’m so glad that guests from other countries laughed at my story very much.)
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I, this time, told the guests a new rakugo piece ‘Something like a crowbar(バールのようなもの in Japanese)’, which was written by a novelist, Shimizu Yoshinori and was arranged by a professional rakugo story teller, Tatekawa Shinosuke.

Here’s the rundown of the story;

Hachi, a careless but funny man, talked to Inkyo(a term representing an elderly man in one’s neck of the woods, who knows a lot) about news in which a burglar entered a building of a jewelry store in Shinagawa. He was wondering what a particular phrase used in the news was: something like a crowbar. He didn’t know what the difference was between ‘something like a crowbar’ and ‘a crowbar’. He had to care such a trivial thing because he was a carpenter and had a lot of crowbars in his toolbox. ‘I could be arrested’, said Hachi. Inkyo showed Hachi several examples through which Hachi would be able to tell the difference between ‘something like a crowbar’ and ‘a crowbar’. Hachi got satsfied with the examples Inkyo indicated, and went back home.

Another concern kept burdened Hachi; his wife suspected that he had a love affair with a madam at a new pub opened in the neighboring town. His wife’s continuous blame ‘The madam is your mistress!’ had been annoying Hachi, but he came up with a nice idea to make his wife calm down. He said, ‘The madam is NOT my mistress, but something like a mistress’. The wife went mad with the phrase and hit Hachi on his head with something. Why didn’t the phrase ‘something like …’ work at all? Hachi visited Inkyo again and blamed him for his advice. What was Inkyo’s answer?

You know, I am a computer game player and I also love watching videos via Nikoniko Douga in Japan or YouTube. Many game players upload videos with their game play and talk. Watchers always get excited with an item that players obtain while watching videos: a crowbar. They usually don’t shout ‘A CROWBAR!’. Instead, they do like this; ‘THAT’S IT! SOMETHING LIKE A CROWBAR!’.

Let me show you a sample. Can you see several people comment ‘something like a crowbar(バールのようなもの)’ in the film?
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I now totally understand why audience always have fun with the phrase ‘something like a crowbar’ through the rakugo story.

There are basically two types of rakugo in Japan. One is koten(literally means, ‘classic’) rakugo, and the other is shinsaku(roughly meatns, ‘modern’) rakugo. Koten rakugo stories were the ones created in the Edo, Taisho, and Meiji era, and shinsaku rakugo stories are the ones born since the Showa era. It could be difficult for the youth to play koten rakugo or to understand several customs or words used in koten rakugo because they are quite old and archaic. For me, this was the first time to play shinsaku rakugo. Telling shinsaku rakugo was a bit comfortable and enjoyable as I expected. I was sure the story was itself easy to understand to most of the guests at the recital.

I am going to tell ‘Like father, like son(親の顔)’ at another recital in September, and ‘Shibahama(芝浜)’ at the one in next March. And I have been thinking about a series of recitals in Nagoya, which I run of as an organizer. I have a bunch of things need tweaking, though, I would like to let them happen in the foreseeable future.

If you want to know further information about English rakugo recitals, don’t hesitate to mail me. I would be happy to tell you anything you want. Please go to the page ‘about me’ in this blog. I’m waiting for you. Thank you.

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  1. AKKO
    April 4, 2013 at 4:31 pm

    Thank you for inviting me to this English Rakugo.
    I spent very fun time with my friends thanks to you!

    Your Rakugo performance was so exciting and passionate that I was impressed by it.
    Moreover, your English pronunciation is good!

    I am glad that you are going to play‘Like father,like son’and ‘Shibahama’in near future.
    I like both stories.
    I look forward to seeing how it goes. Waku-Waku.

    • April 5, 2013 at 8:03 am

      Welcome to my humble abode, AKKO 🙂
      I was so glad that you guys came to the recital and enjoyed our rakugo stories.

      >Moreover, your English pronunciation is good!

      Yay! That’s what I’d like to hear!

      Now, I’m so thrilled to tell a new rakugo story ‘Like father, like son’, and I’ve already set out to rehearse it. Another recital in September. I can’t wait!

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