The 6 Stages of Drunkenness in Japanese Cellphone Charms

The Charm - or Charms - of Drunkenness in JapanThe Charm - or Charms - of Drunkenness in Japan


St. Patrick's Day is traditionally a celebration of all things Irish, and it's become a worldwide phenomenon. Even Japan has gotten into the St. Paddy's spirit (and spirits), with annual parades taking place in Tokyo since 1991.

Of course, most people associate St. Patrick's Day with drinking - at least, it's one of the most convenient excuses for drinking there is. I thought to myself, how does this apply to Japan, where people don't look for excuses to drink. In fact, drunkenness in Japan, especially by the nation's overworked and under-appreciated office workers, has always been accepted and even indulged. This set of 6 "Drunken Salaryman" cellphone charms illustrates not only the affection Japanese have for these pillars of the economy, but at the same time reminds us that we're all human and act pretty much the same once we've had a few too many.


Stage 1 -- The Lecturing Drunk

"Lemme tell ya something... anything... everything...""Lemme tell ya something... anything... everything..."

There's nothing like alcohol to loosen the tongue, and if the tongue belongs to your inebriated boss, you'd best get comfortable and let him ramble on... and on... and on...


Stage 2 -- The Uninhibited Drunk

"We're streaking", old-school style"We're streaking", old-school style

Once the tongue has been loosened, other things follow. Like clothing. Here, our red-faced, leering drunkard is getting into the swing of things by swinging his clothes across the room. Soon he'll be wearing nothing but a lampshade. Hopefully on his head.


Stage 3 -- The Angry Drunk

Punch-drunk lovePunch-drunk love

Over-reacting to some imagined slight, our beer-infused boss has stopped swinging his clothes and is ready to swing his fists. On a bright side, his aim is likely not what it used to be.


Stage 4 -- The Morose Drunk

Cry me a liver...Cry me a liver...

Now too blitzed to babble, too sloshed to strip and too juiced to joust, the pickled partier regrets his actions of the evening (week, month, decade) and/or his wicked comb-over, and has begun sobbing into his sake.


Stage 5 -- The Barfing Drunk

"Kiss me, I'm Irish"... said the toilet"Kiss me, I'm Irish"... said the toilet

We've all been there... and whether you're Driving The Porcelain Bus or Calling Ralph On The Big White Phone, it's not the Happy Place you thought you were en route to at the evening's start.


Stage 6 -- The Unconscious Drunk

In dreamland - nightmare hangover to comeIn dreamland - nightmare hangover to come

The good thing about Stage 6 is that your friends no longer have to put up with your antics of the previous 5 stages. The bad thing is, you're likely to awaken much later in a strange place, with a strange smell, and possibly with a strange new tattoo. At least you're dressed for work...

Sound familiar? Yes, there's nothing like being wasted to bring us all down to the same common denominator. If you're a Japanese salaryman, though, at least you have good reason to believe that society appreciates you - even though you may be three sheets to the wind - and will refrain from scrawling obscene graffiti on your forehead in lipstick as you sleep it off in a public park.

Mar 17, 2008
by Anonymous


those aren't the stages of drunkenness, those are different types of drunks. Some people become talkative, others are violent (angry drunks are the worst, most annoying type of drunk), some people have a low tolerance for alcohol and fall out pretty quick or spend the night puking. some people just use drinking as an excuse to let their freak flag fly. You can also switch from one of these types to another type depending on what you are drinking (angry drunks tend to prefer gin) and how long its been since you had a drink (if you go a tear without drinking any alcohol, your tolerance is going to be lower than if you drink every day.)

Mar 18, 2008
by Anonymous



Mar 19, 2008
by Anonymous

these are great

anyone know if these can be bought online??

Mar 19, 2008
by Steve Levenstein
Steve Levenstein's picture

Buying online...

Read the last sentence of the article...