[Readings] The Sound of Vibrance, Translated by Robert Chapeskie | Harper's Magazine

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[Readings]

The Sound of Vibrance

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From posts on DQN Today, a Japanese website that allows users to drop pins on neighborhood maps and note noise or other disturbances. Translated from the Japanese.

Several families are under the illusion that the street is their property.

I’ve been made to suffer for years. Every day, children and their parents play in the road.

A father works on his motorcycle in the street. Children play all around him—a state of chaos.

Stupid mothers playing with balls in the road with their children. They glare at my car when I go to work.

Just passing through every day makes my blood boil.

When picking up their children, they cross other people’s property on purpose.

A dog is kept outside and barks at all hours. The sound of it lapping up water is awful.

Someone is scattering food for crows and pigeons, which leaves the road covered in their droppings. This person shows no sign of quitting.

Children and rabbits are left unattended.

Skateboarders bear down on pedestrians at high speed. They are malicious.

Parents launch bottle rockets that fly more than ten meters high.

In the summer, people set up beach umbrellas and plastic pools in the road.

Young and old, everyone in this area plays in the road. Many families grill meat, and on sunny days the whole neighborhood smells like barbecue.

When they gather and barbecue, I can’t hang up my laundry.

On holidays, you can often hear their laughter and the dry sound of rackets hitting balls.

When evening rolls around, they start playing tag. I worry that safety and morals are in decline.

Even when the children grow up and a family moves away, another family with small children takes their place. It’s hell.

There is a boy who not only plays in the street but enters other people’s yards and demands barley tea. His mother says, with a smug look on her face, “Children should be raised by society.”


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