Okay, first of all, a dozen black roses to whoever decided women do all the giving on V-Day in Japan. They tried to band-aid over this egregious error by creating White Day on March 14 (on which men are supposed to triple-return the favor) but all that really did was create more giri-choco.
Yes, Obligation Chocolate is the burden all working women here must bear. Not only do you have to fork over the big bucks to buy sweets for your true love (Godiva goes for about $3.50 PER PIECE here), you have to give chocolate to every guy you work with too. They, however, don’t rate the good stuff.
Convenience stores, grocery stores, even 100 yen shops deal in tokens guaranteed to fulfill obligation while discouraging any interpretation of actual affection.
Jonelle Patrick writes novels set in Tokyo
Writing mystery books set in Tokyo is mostly what I do, but I also blog about the odd stuff I see every day in Japan. I'm a graduate of Stanford University and the Sendagaya Japanese Institute in Tokyo, and a member of the International Thriller Writers, the Mystery Writers of America, and Sisters In Crime. When I'm not in Tokyo, I live in San Francisco. I also host a travel site called The Tokyo Guide I Wish I'd Had, so if you're headed to Japan and want to check out the places I take my friends when they're in town, take a look!