Somebody is watching you…
And, they are going to tell!
Seen in and around Gotanda the last couple weeks.
I usually love the feeling of anonymity I have in Tokyo. Even though it is illusory, the sheer size of the city and number of people often makes me feel as if nobody sees me. Of course, I’ve run into people from work in unlikely places, and I’ve had many students tell me some variation of “I saw you at (insert station here) doing (insert hopefully innocuous activty here).” many times, but this poster really got under my skin.
The ever vigilant Osaki Police Department usually limits itself to posters in banks and ATMs about “suspicious foreigners” and “sneaky” thefts, but they’ve really raised the level of paranoia to a generalized feeling of constant threat with this one. The caution yellow background, angry red lettering, and flaming pupil eyes are really creepy. This poster is in such stark contrast to the usual cute exhortations of safety first, no littering, and be careful that it really makes me wonder.
The fact that the first one I saw was hanging across the street from my apartment made me look over my shoulder just a little bit. Since then, I’ve spotted one pasted to a wall in a quiet side-street on my way to the post office, one on a public bulletin board in front of a small temple, and one sticker on a vending machine around the corner.
Just what is it that somebody is watching for, and who are they? Are they going to tell their mother?