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Photo : ©Derek Makishima

2018/10/15   #009

SNS Eigojutsu (on E-Tele): May 17th   #ImplicitBias and My Wardrobe

Eテレ『世界へ発信!SNS英語術』5月17日放送分 #ImplicitBiasと当日の衣裳について

KAZOO/ G・カズオ・ペニャ

Official website of the show :

■Behind the Scenes

After a three week absence, Gori-san was back on the show today with style. Apparently he’d watched last week’s #StarWarsDay episode at home and was green with envy. Part of it was the fun topic, but I suspect part of it was that I got to interview Spider-man himself from Avengers: Infinity War, Tom Holland. Gori-san has directed a few movies and is very knowledgeable about cinema, and I suspect the film geek in him would have loved to come.

Social media is a forum for social activism like #MeToo and #NeverAgain, but on the flipside it is a mosh pit of cute animal photos and groan-worthy memes. It’s also a place for hashtag games. So many potential topics to choose from, but every time Gori-san is on the show, we happen to find that we’ve picked a serious hashtag to feature.

But on this day, we did have a little incident that put a smile on our faces: when we all came into the studio in wardrobe for rehearsal, Gori-san, Furuta-san, and I found that we were each wearing a gray jacket and khaki-colored slacks. We were the three amigos.

As I’ve brought up in this column previously, we shoot on a blue screen, which means that there are color restrictions on wardrobe. And because of those restrictions, the men naturally end up coming in with a similar idea of what to wear.

In the end, Gori-san was kind enough to change into something else for the actual taping. Problem solved.


Photo : ©Derek Makishima






■The Challenge of Implicit Bias

On this episode, we featured the #ImplicitBias hashtag. ~~ with an incident at one of a certain world-famous coffee chain’s Philadelphia branches. Two African-American men had been sitting down for a while when one of them asked the manager to used the bathroom. The manager refused, and when the two men continued to hang around for several minutes inside the coffee shop, the manager called the cops and the two men ended up being arrested.

The take is that the incident is an example of the implicit bias of the manager. Implicit bias refers to biases against certain races or groups of people that form subconsciously based on the kind of social and cultural environment you are placed in. In other words, there was a subconscious bias she possessed, based on stereotypes, which drove her to discriminate. Those biases made her feel that the two men were suspicious, and ultimately they drove her to call the cops. The fact that they are subconscious makes them especially difficult to address, as we harbor them without being aware of their presence.

Side note, as an American, one thing that crossed my mind is how the sorry state of public bathrooms in the U.S. may have contributed to the situation. Compared to Japan, public toilets in the U.S. are pretty much always disgusting, and as a result bathrooms in cafes and fast food joints become de facto public toilets. Basically, there is a constant flow of people coming in and going out without placing an order, and the staff on hand are forced to be vigilant.

Those stresses perhaps served to exacerbate the manager’s implicit bias.






■This Week’s Wardrobe / 今週の衣裳について

■Timberland Boat Shoes

Photo : ©RendezVous
The highlight of my wardrobe this week was these boat shoes I bought last summer. Boat shoes, which are sometimes called deck shoes, are shoes designed for walking on the deck of a boat or yacht.

Timberland is a brand known for their iconic yellow boots—staples of street fashion—but I would highly recommend these boat shoes (22,680 yen, tax included).

Boat shoes are made with special soles designed to prevent slippage, as slipping on the deck of a boat could be fatal. Because these are Timberland’s, they have the same lug sole you can find on their work boots. In any case they have good grip.

The leather shoelaces were a bit difficult to tie at first, but over time they have become soft. The are thread around the shoe itself, so I dread the day I have to re-lace them, but apparently they sell something called a shoelace needle precisely for that occasion.

Boat shoes are usually worn without socks, but I wore these on the TV show’s virtual set (which is indoors, and decidedly not a boat). Plus, I was still trying to break in the leather, so I went with yellow socks.




デッキで足を滑らすと命を落とす危険性もあるため、滑りにくくなっている独特なソールがポイントです。このデッキ・シューズの場合、ワークブーツ特有のラグ・ソール (凹凸加工の靴底)になっています。



Photo : ©RendezVous

Timberland Shinjuku / ティンバーランド 新宿
Park City Isetan4 1F, B1 3-15-16 Shinjuku, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo 160-0022
〒160-0022 東京都新宿区新宿3-15-16 パークシティイセタン4・1/B1F
TEL : +81-(0)3-3355-0821
Open 営業時間 10:30-20:00
Closed 定休日 : Irregular 不定休

■Fabric Tokyo gray pinstripe button-down shirt

Photo : ©RendezVous
Last week at rehearsals, my shirt from Universal Language got the thumbs down due to the fact that it was creating a moiré pattern, because the black stripes were too much of a contrast. My button-down shirt this week has gray stripes, but perhaps because the contrast is less striking, and I was able to wear it with no problem.

When the shirt was first delivered to me, I found the collar too crisp for comfort, so I threw it in the wash once before wearing it for the show. The non-iron treatment means it largely stays wrinkle free, which is very convenient.




Photo : ©RendezVous

Shibuya MODI 3F 1-21-3 Jinnan, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo 150-0041
〒150-0041 東京都渋谷区神南1-21-3 渋谷モディ 3階
TEL : +81-(0)3-4405-5075
Open 営業時間 11:00-21:00
Closed 定休日 : No fixed holidays / 不定休

■Brooks Brothers beige chinos

Photo : ©RendezVous

Up until today, I’d mostly worn matching jacket and slacks—suits, basically—so this week I decided to go with something slightly more casual: these chinos, from Brooks Brothers’ casual line, Red Fleece.

Chinos can vary wildly in price, depending on the brand or manufacturer, from under 5,000 yen up to as high as 30,000 yen. In terms of that perfect balance of price, build, and look, these 10,000 yen chinos are more than worth the money.

They are slim fit but are made using stretch cotton, so they never feel too tight—but they allow you to cut a stylish figure.

They are also garment dyed, which means they are colored after it was put together. It gives the pants a great hue, and I took to these so strongly that I bought a total of four pairs, both for the show and for my private life.






■Brooks Brothers Light Gray Super Soft Jacket

Photo : ©RendezVous

I’ve talked about this item before. See WARDROBE & ENSEMBLES #003.

こちらの商品は、以前紹介したのでWARDROBE & ENSEMBLES #003を参照してください

Photo : ©RendezVous

Brooks Brothers Aoyama Flagship
ブルックス・ブラザーズ 青山本店
3-5-6 Kita-Aoyama, Minato-ku, Tokyo 107-0061
〒107-0061 東京都港区北青山3-5-6
TEL : +81-03-3404-4295
Open 営業時間 :11:00~19:30
Closed 定休日 : No fixed holidays / 不定休

■Isetan Men’s brown braided fabric belt

Photo : ©RendezVous

Wearing a brown leather belt (especially one that’s new) with white or beige slacks can run the risk of color transfer. When I wear light colored pants, I like to use this braided belt I purchased on the first floor of Isetan Men’s.

The price is 9,720 yen (with tax), and the build is sturdy while offering plenty of stretch. It’s a breeze to buckle and is a regular part of my day-to-day wardrobe.

Other than brown, Isetan Men’s sells a variety of colors, including black and ones that weave two colors together.





Isetan Shinjuku Store
伊勢丹 新宿店
3-14-1 Shinjuku, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo 160-0022
〒160-0022 東京都新宿区新宿3-14-1
TEL : +81-03-3352-1111
Open 営業時間 10:30~20:00
Closed 定休日 : No fixed holidays / 不定休

■Tabio yellow socks

Photo : Tabio提供

Continuing the precedent I’ve set for myself these past couple of weeks, I decided to wear colorful socks again.

These yellow ones are “Men’s Power Fit 2×2 Ribbed Socks” from Tabio (1,080 yen, tax included). As far as I can remember, this was the first time in my life I’ve worn yellow socks.

They are quite comfortable, and the fabric is just right—not too thick, and breathable—so even a nervous sweater like myself can get through a TV show taping without feeling like I’m sloshing about in a puddle.

Pairing these socks with the aforementioned boat shoes also meant I got to show these socks off.



今回はタビオの『メンズ パワーフィット2×2リブソックス』(税込1,080円)のイエローを履きました。イエローの靴下を履くのは、人生初めての経験です。



Photo : Tabio提供

Tabio Omotesando Hills
タビオ 表参道ヒルズ店
Omotesando Hills B2F, 4-12-10 Shibuya-ku, Tokyo 150-0001
〒150-0001 東京都渋谷区神宮前4-12-10 表参道ヒルズ 本館B2F
TEL : +81-03-5785-0561
Open 営業時間 11:00-21:00(Weekday/平日), 11:00-20:00(Sat., Sun. and holidays/土日祝)
Closed 定休日 : No fixed holidays / 不定休

■Hakusan Megane brown glasses / 『白山眼鏡』の茶色のメガネ

Photo : ©RendezVous

I’ve talked about this item before. See WARDROBE & ENSEMBLES #004.

こちらの商品は、以前紹介したのでWARDROBE & ENSEMBLES #004を参照してください

One Last Word

At the end of the show, our resident English teacher Torikai-sensei taught us the idiom “wake up and smell the coffee”. This is a very common phrase in the States, used to shake someone out of their obliviousness and open their eyes to the reality of a situation.

For those who don’t drink caffeine, I suggest the phrase “wake up and smell the decaf”.

Side note, the morning of the taping, I got onto the elevator at NHK when the lady next to me—I’m assuming an NHK employee—turned to me and said, “I watch your show.” This was the very first time someone had “recognized” me from the show, and in my surprise I just managed to say “Thank you. I’m on my way to the taping.”

I felt in some very tiny way that I had made it, that I had achieved some modicum of fame, and so for sometime afterwards I was somewhat zoned out. So what did I do? I drank a cup of coffee, of course.


番組の最後に、鳥飼先生が紹介された“Wake up and smell the coffee”という慣用句は、アメリカではとても良く使われる表現です。目の前の現実を認めようとしない時や、気付こうとしない時に、「自分が置かれている状態を把握しなさい」「現実に目を覚ませ!」と言った具合で使う表現です。

カフェインが苦手な人には、“Wake up and smell the decaf”という別の言い方の方がいいのかもしれませんが。