February 23rd, 2010


every day's great at your junes

Most of the people on my flist who still read this journal won't get this, but anyone who's been to Japan, Taiwan, or South Korea will. Within seconds, at most.

This song is far more catchy than any of FamilyMart's actual advertising--and more relevant to their brand. (Nooooo! I'm half the world away from the nearest FamilyMart and I still can't get that little jingle out of my head!)

You know you've transcended from "mega-corporation" to "cultural institution" when people not affiliated with your company write a sentimental pop song* about your stores. Taiwanese blogger MUTEBKTK, who was immediately inspired to make an unlistenable remix of the song the moment he heard it, observes that the song is not just a commentary on Japanese convenience stores but on the loneliness and alienation of contemporary urban life. In the past, we had family to welcome us with a bowl of warm food when we came home from work; now, the one who welcomes us home with a warm bowl of food is FamilyMart. (全家就是你家!) The blogger finds this poignant. I find it sad.

(The attitude is a little dated, too, but hey, Taiwan and Japan are still very traditional, patriarchal societies; modernity is just now bringing them through the same kind of familial separation anxiety that America experienced fifty years ago.)

*"Combination Pizza Hut and Taco Bell" is only a sentimental pop song if you're high

(edit) Oh, hey, looks like there's a Taiwanese version. This one incorporates the jingle with the advertising slogan from the Taiwanese television commercials (some commenters are calling it the "FamilyMart brainwashing song"), and, as such, it is quite possibly the most annoying song I have ever heard.