Lorenzo Pirisino
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Tales from a lost PDA - Bokki

Posted on 2009/06/30 13:45:54 (June 2009).

[Tuesday 30th June 2009]

Japan, I should know something about this place, but apparently also Mr.X have been there and witnessed something that is surely quite.... funny!


I was at a meeting today with the Italian Chamber of Commerce in Japan, nothing to get excited about, as usually the meetings are boring and do little for the company I work for. But, nevertheless, institutions need to be revered sometimes and here I am.

It was here that I witnessed to a quite funny scene.

An Italian guy next to me got introduced to some important Japanese managers, and more or less the scene was like this:

The two parties face each other and the usual bowing begins, the Japanese senior manager in front of the other "lesser beings" that work at the company.
The personal secretary of the top manager guy stands in between the Italian guy and his boss, slightly on the side not to impair direct contact.

With a swift movement the personal secretary, a 40 year old Japanese man, presents to his god-on-earth boss the mandatory business card that is necessary in any proper Japanese presentation.

The Italian guy must have studied something before and quickly extract his Louis Vitton card holder and draws the key to personal relationships in Japan.

The Japanese guy goes first, bowing slightly, "Buongiorno sono Fumio Tanaka" (good morning I am Fumio Tanaka) in a quite staggering Italian, but showing that he learned two words in the car before arriving to the venue.
The managers behind him look chuffed at the deep knowledge of Italian language that the master-of-our-universe is dishing out to the poor gaijin.

The Italian guy now bows gives the card to Tanaka san and here the act is unveiled...

"Hajimemashite, BOCCHI desu!", all accents wrong, but even the counterpart wasn't all that perfect with the Italian that he tried... Oh and strangely when he was saying that everyone was very silent.

Well here I have to stop for a second to describe the scene and then I will say what "REALLY" happened for the Italian guy and the Japanese one.

The top manager immediately takes the card and turns around to stare at the secretary, almost incinerating him with a stare.

The secretary guy is frozen with the expression of someone that was just bitten in the balls by a rabid dog.

The other managers look at each other as if they are about to be run over by a train, mouth open, going quite pale.

The Italian guy looks around and cannot clearly understand what just happened, everyone is infact frozen with terror. Maybe an earthquake just happened?

Quickly the head of the chamber of commerce steps in and diverts the attention clearing the party, leaving the Japanese delegation to their terror, taking Mr.Bocchi to another place to talk about that project that was so important.

Well here goes the explanation...

In Japanese when you introduce one to the other you can say "XXX desu" (pron. DES), which is a very basic form to say "I am XXX". This form also is used to explain a certain state, for example I can say "Samui desu" which means "I am cold".

Here is the catch... The poor Italian guy has a very normal surname, Bocchi (pron. BOKKI), but that has a meaning in Japanese... BOKKI means HARD-ON.

So he just said "I have an HARD-ON" instead of introducing himself... Or better he introduced himself fine, but he probably didn't know about the hidden meaning of it's surname...

So replay the scene...

Mr.Superpresident of a multinational that makes as much as the GDP of Bangladesh goes "I am Mr.Tanaka" - smile - card is given - "And I am HORNY!" - other card is given with satisfied smile... :D

I couldn't stop laughing...

You've got to love Japan!


Check out the older Chapters in the Tales from a Lost PDA series:

I - The Lesser Damage
II - Good Times
III - We Need to be a Team
IV - Sledgehammer
V - Tonight?

Comment 1


That must have been great to see!! :-)

Posted by Nigel at 2009/07/02 12:26:15.

Comment 2

Nigel: Mr.X must have had a lot of fun at that meeting! :D

Posted by Lox at 2009/07/04 03:30:34.

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