TOKYO Jan 30 Love was in the air in a Tokyo
park as normally staid Japanese husbands gathered to scream out
their feelings for their wives, promising gratitude and extra
With modesty and reticence traditionally valued over
outspokenness, expressing deeper feelings like love has long
been hard in Japan.
That's why dozens of Japanese men gather once a year ahead
of Jan 31, which in Japanese is a play on the words for "Beloved
Wife," to let their feelings fly.
Declarations at the Tuesday night event ranged from a simple
"I'll love you forever" to expressions of gratitude for homemade
"I'm sorry that I've gained weight over the last seven
years," a suit-clad man yelled. "But that's because the meals
you cook are so delicious."
The event, now in its fifth year, was thought up by Kiyotaka
Yamana with the support of a local flower shop to urged Japanese
men to show their affection in more explicit ways.
"The economy is getting better in Japan and I see a lot of
Japanese married couples getting more active in deepening their
relationships," Yamana said.
Wives in the audience laughed and clapped, especially when
one man got down on his knees to offer his wife a bouquet.
"He's very fabulous and manly today," said Yuko Todo, 33,
after her husband Takeshi's performance. "It just reminded me
how macho he used to be - I'd forgotten that in the eight years
we've been married. My heart pounded."
(Reporting by Hyun Oh, writing by Elaine Lies, Editing by