An Ode to 100 Yen Shops

It’s no secret that the duck and I live our lives as perpetually penny-pinching personalities to the fullest. Therefore it is self-evident that we enjoy the casual shop at a 100 yen shop (well, ¥108 if you add the sales tax) – if we ever muster the courage to venture beyond our comfort zone (=past the neighborhood Konbini), that is.

Duck in 100 Yen heaven

The first time we entered such a palace of low-priced magic (which, and I think we can all agree on that, is the best kind of magic) the duck and I were impressed by the great selection of items (I’m writing food, decoration, toiletries, stationery, craft material, clothing items, cleaning products, toys, souvenirs, gardening tools, pet supplies, common household items, electronic goods, kitchenware, etc.) and the relatively good quality of most of them (which, let’s face it, you don’t always find at a Dollar Tree or Poundland). This is why we devote our second piece of fauxetry to Japan’s glorious hyaku-en-shoppus:

100 Yen Shop Magic

Oh, 100 yen shop, you wonderful place,
temporary home to items manifold;
you give each object its rightful space;
about your appeal great stories are told!
When the common shopper enters your realm,
beautifully arranged shelves spread before her eyes,
she understands at once you’re a work of art;
you effectively impress, content, overwhelm,
have mastered the craft to clearly organize,
you satisfy the deepest desires of the heart!

Not only your appearance sings of your glory,
your products themselves are truly splendid,
their design and reliability herald your story,
about a reign of excellence that never ended!
Just strolling through your aisles is a wonderful feat;
even if we have to grab just one thing in a hurry,
you do your absolute best to not put us out;
not only do you carry whatever we might need,
you take us even the smallest reason for worry,
as the fine quality of your wares is never in doubt!

Oh, 100 yen shop, you conquered our hearts so fast!
Your selection of products cannot but enthrall.
Nonetheless, in Japan your competition is vast,
but you have one characteristic to lift you above all;
those who live on the cheap do not have to fear;
enchanted by your offerings, too many to count,
we might grab amazing finds, again and again…
The ingenious pricing makes your appeal so clear:
if the products do not feature any other amount,
for each we pay the incredible price of one hundred yen!*

Due to the impending separation from our beloved 100 yen shops, the duck and I lost our euphoria somewhere halfway through composing this piece of fauxetry.
Therefore, our ode is a bit unpolished and pretty clumsy at parts. However, I think that it still shows our infatuation with those wonderful shops… enough to question our sanity!

Duck and me OUT!


* plus taxes, so that’s not so pretty anymore – but still amazing!

Bonus info: If your stinginess level is not as high as ours (sorry, keep trying!) 3 Coins is the place for you. It’s a shop where everything costs 300 yen, 3 coins, plus tax – unless it’s on sale, then it’s even cheaper!


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