Kentucky Fried Christmas

In the West, the notion of going to Kentucky Fried Chicken for Christmas dinner is considered profoundly depressing. Sitting alone in a soulless junk-food restaurant on Christmas day, forlornly chewing on oily chicken wings, is the last resort of the most desperately lonely, friendless, bedsit-dweller.
In Japan, however, it’s a national craze! Folks form long lines at Christmas, shivering outside in the cold, waiting for hours to get their hands on a seasonal party bucket.
Roast turkey is as rare as rocking-horse shit in Japan, and untried by most Japanese people, so many assume fried chicken is the next best thing.

I can sort of see the thinking behind the association of Christmas and Kentucky Fried Chicken- their logo is the right colours- red and white, and their mascot is a jolly, portly man with a white beard. But still, KFC?

15 Responses to Kentucky Fried Christmas

  1. ramblingsofaculturefreak says:

    I dont even eat KFC on regular days…..

  2. roaf says:

    I’m occasionally tempted after a couple of beers, but I’ll give it a miss on Xmas day!

  3. J. says:

    I have to admit that last year I did KFC on Christmas day with my girlfriend. This year, I think I’ll just cook Mexican food or something.

    Oh, wait. I’m working. I mean, once Halloween is over, the Christmas decorations go up all over Tokyo. For two months, Christmas, in all its over-commercialized glory is promoted throughout the country only to end up being a work day.

    Piss on Christmas in Japan.

  4. roaf says:

    Yeah, it is a bit of an anticlimax. People celebrate the 25th by taking down the tree and going to work.
    But, now I think of it, maybe KFC isn’t such a bad idea. I promised to take my girlfriend to an expensive restaurant for Christmas dinner. I could have saved a fortune if I’d just grabbed a KFC party bucket! Doh!

  5. Harvey says:

    The commercialization of Christmas in Japan is pretty much equal to the commercialization of Christmas in the States. In my humble opinion.

    And that’s quite a feat considering that Christmas is a Christian holiday, and in Japan only 0.7 percent of the population claim to be Christian (figure from CIA world fact book), whereas in the United States we’ve got Protestant 52% and Roman Catholic 24%! Not to mention the other strings of Christianity. You’d think that Christmas in the states would be a little more traditional.

    I did laugh incredulously when I heard that KFC was the Christmas thing to do though. Hah.

    And I do miss my xmas vacation! Gotta work that day lame!

  6. clarkebruce says:

    Funniest looking Col. Sanders I’ve ever seen.

    PS – I would rather poke my eyes out with a brooch than eat KFC for Christmas.

  7. roaf says:

    You’re right, Harvey. I suppose it’s weird that the Japanese celebrate Christmas at all! Bad luck working on Xmas day. i managed to persuade my boss to let me have the day off.

    Bruce, the brooch in the eyes sounds painful, but I may have to agree with you.

  8. Tori says:

    I’ve been wondering this for awhile:
    Is it just me or do these Colonel Sander statutes look Japanese? His eyes look slightly Japanese to me… I don’t know.

  9. roaf says:

    Yeah, I know what you mean. he’s a little racially ambiguous.
    Funnily enough, I once met a Japanese Colonel Sanders lookalike in Yokohama. He started talking to me in Sakuragicho station. He was about sixty, quite plump, and had a white suit, and had the same kind of beard and tie as Sanders. He basically looked exactly like the guy. And he spoke with a Southern drawl, like the Sheriff in “Smokey and the Bandit.”
    One of my weirdest experiences in Japan. I thought I was losing my mind!

  10. Viet says:

    Didn’t KFC revolutionize the idea of having strawberry shortcake on Christmas, in Japan?

  11. roaf says:

    Really? I wondered where that started!

  12. pudgym says:

    Most fast-food restaurants in North America are closed on 25 December. Even White Castle, which otherwise does not close at all. (It locks the dining room for six hours each day.)
    Why doesn’t Japan have more turkey or lamb entrees? The farms would occupy too much land? Turkeys do not take up much more space than pigs or chickens. I know most of its beef is imported from Australia.

  13. […] suspect devout Christians would say that the inexplicable Japanese seasonal customs of pigging out on KFC and banging each others brains out in love hotels, were not in the true spirit of […]

  14. kornferry says:

    Don’t forget the KFC Buffet in Osaka the only in Japan

  15. Nancy says:

    I was wondering if you ever considered changing
    the layout of your blog? Its very well written; I love what
    youve got to say. But maybe you could a little more in the
    way of content so people could connect with it better. Youve got an awful lot of text
    for only having one or 2 pictures. Maybe you could space it out better?

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