May 23, 2009


There is this sign on my way for bike. It lets me grin every time I see it. What does this mean?

"Kossori"(こっそり) is an adverb that means "secretly". "Dou"(堂) means several things, but in this case, it means a shop.

The answer is a shop that sells videos (DVD) for adult. And, in this case, they are sold through vending machines.

People can buy "kossori" videos, without seeing any clerks.

It is a little bit difficult for many parents to explain these kind of signs to their children.


Unknown said...

I think these "shops" are also very funny. There is no way you could have a shop like this in New Zealand because all the under-age people would buy things there. Just like beer and cigarette vending machines. I was very surprised to see these when I came to Japan.

Zarte said...

I've just discovered your blog, and let me say it is very interesting. Besides, sincerely, I prefer walking to riding a bike, I also like to meet others cultures, and specially the japanese. But I've just start in it. From now, I'll visit your blog.

bikenglish said...


I have never entered into this shop, but I like this shop's name because I can feel a sense of humor.


I am very glad to read your comment. I will continue to introduce interesting happenings around me in Japan. And I am looking forward to your re-visit on my blog.

ジョン said...

I didn't realize that 堂 could mean "shop" too. Thanks for pointing that out.

bikenglish said...


Some companies use "dou" in their company's name.Foe example,"任天堂","三省堂","資生堂".

ジョン said...

I knew about Nintendo, though I didn't make the connection until you mentioned it just now. And I'd never seen Shiseido and Sanseido's name's in kanji before! (They always write them in romaji, right?) Sure enough, you're right. Thanks for the great examples.

ところで、「make the connection」とは、既に知っている二つ以上のことが関連しているのに気づく」という意味です。ちょっと例文を挙げさせてもらってもいいですか。

Henry: The speaker today is Bill Smiley.
Jim: Who's he? I don't know him.
Henry: What? Yes you do! He was the guest of honor at the company picnic a couple of years ago.
Jim: Wait, that's him?! [looks more carefully] Ha, it sure is! I didn't even make the connection until you said something.
Henry: Geez, man ... you've got a terrible memory.