Over-Polite Japanese Fish Auctioneers Hit Back (Gently)
The Japanese truly are an overly polite people. Remember back in April, they decided to limit tourist access to Tokyo's famous Tsukiji Fish Markets? The new rules were that tourists had to show up before 6.15am and were meant to be confined to one designated spot during the big tuna auctions.
This obviously didn't work out. The poor fishmongers and tuna auctioneers have still had to put up with a blitzkrieg of camera flashes and tuna-touching tourists--not what you want if the tuna's headed to a classy sushi restaurant.
From December 15, tourists will be banned entirely from the early morning auctions, a decision that's probably quite fair. But the Japanese are still too polite to ban us forever, so it's just for a month--perhaps after that any tourists who've completed Fish Auction Etiquette 101 will be allowed back in.