These guys are everywhere today. People bring a mask home, someone puts it on, and the rest of the house chases him out.

Setsubun!

February the 4th is the first day of Spring.

February 3rd is the last day of winter — time to clean out any demons who may be about. It’s easy enough, just throw beans at them. No devils about? Demonise your husband, boyfriend, father and shout at him to get out — Oni wa soto! (Which helps explain why men stay at work so late.)

These guys are everywhere today. People bring a mask home, someone puts it on, and the rest of the house chases him out.

These guys are everywhere today. People bring a mask home, someone puts it on, and the rest of the house chases him out.

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Dried soy beans. Eat one for every year you’ve been alive. Some of you might need two boxes.

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These are HUGE. You eat one by yourself while facing the “lucky” direction. You mustn’t speak while until you finish the whole thing.

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One Comment on “Setsubun!

  1. Oh wow – I love hearing about different cultural celebrations like this, thank you for sharing!! According to your Wiki link, people will drink ginger saké while doing this? (I wonder if that’s before or after deciding whose going to wear the mask and get a box of beans flung at them?) Get drunk, throw beans at the bloke whose annoyed you most today – sounds fun, where do I sign up…?! Oh, and do men throw beans at their womenfolk too, or is it just a really unlucky day to be a fella? 😉

    Like

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