Story 6: Other Short Stories – Part 5
Translator Note: This part contains ficlets that can be read any time after Volume 1 of Yes, No, or Maybe Half?
Not Staged for TV
“Those were some incredibly cute baby pandas that we just saw. Adventure World in Shirahama, Wakayama Prefecture has a male panda, Eimei, most famously known as ‘Super Papa.’ Please take a look at our flipboard. He has 6 offspring with Meimei and 8 offspring with Lauhin.”
“Oh? But in human terms, if you were to look at this family tree…”
“Pandas are not humans, please do not confuse the two. Next, we bring you our special report.”
“You said that on purpose, didn’t you?”
“Huh? No way, it just slipped out~!”
“Apparently, the elder gentleman who we just saw fight off an Asian black bear with his bare hands—he was once the number one karate champion in Japan when he was young. Although it had been 30 years since he had last practiced karate, he said that in the moment his fist just reacted on its own.”
“Certainly, there are times that the body can throb by reflex.”
“Yes, the body can move on the job by reflex. After the commercial break, we bring you the weather.”
“Hey, I’m on to you. I bet you did it on purpose. You probably posted this Don’t Lose Your Cool, Announcer Kunieda! supercut yourself.”
“Aww, I don’t have that much free time~ I can’t even edit videos… You know, Tsuzuki-san’s probably a bigger suspect than me~”
“Oi, you know I’d never do that.”
“Oops, don’t tell me you’re angry?”
“As if I’d only string a few clips together before releasing it to the Internet. I’d go all out with the sound effects and transitions.”
“That’s not the damn issue here!”
“…Maybe I should do it? It’s not a bad idea. I can probably add two extra digits to the number of views.”
“Oh, then I’ll work even harder~”
“Dammit, I knew you did it on purpose!!”
(First published in a blog post celebrating additional printings of Dear Plus Bunko’s “Yes, No, or Maybe Half?” in December 2016.)
Let’s Play with Kunieda-kun
A piece of strawberry shortcake sat by itself on a plate. But it wasn’t a sad sight—Ushio just happened to buy it when he had stopped by a bakery around closing hours and saw the last of the remaining cakes in the showcase. A single fork laid next to the plate, and now that Kei was back from work, they primed themselves to face off in their first ever Don’t Topple the Cake battle. Kei had picked the right to go first when he won the rock-paper-scissors match, and he scored away a huge chunk from the front of the cake.
“Oh, you took a big one~ But can’t you be a little more considerate in your moves?”
“Quit complaining, I didn’t break any rules,” Kei retorted as he munched on the cake.
Ushio stuck the fork into the fan-shaped curve in the cake. Kei, Ushio, Kei, Ushio… Eventually the cake resembled a candle, barely supporting the strawberry that perched on top of it. And it was Ushio’s turn next.
“Oh, right, we haven’t decided on the penalty for the loser yet. Well, for Kunieda-san, it’s probably less a penalty and more to entertain and service me…”
“What the hell are you saying? Anyway, hurry up! If you lose, you’re coughing up 10,000 yen!”1
“Oh, the way you gouge people is very lower middle class of you.”
Ushio speared away the strawberry and ate it.
As long as the cake didn’t topple, it was still in play. Generally speaking, while the “cake” typically referred to the sponge portion of the confection, it wasn’t against the rules to take the strawberry itself. Kei obediently followed the usual conventions like the perfect, model student that he was, leaving the strawberry alone—Ushio had done absolutely nothing wrong.
He had done nothing wrong, but when Kei uttered, “Ah,” and his eyes looked so incredibly devastated, Ushio couldn’t help but say, “Sorry,” and apologize. The penalty went undecided, so what was the point of the game then? It was all good as long as they got some cheap entertainment from a single piece of cake.
(First published in a blog post for Strawberry Day in January 2017.)2
Full of Sun3
“I see that you’ve made the Top Favorite TV Announcer Rankings again this year, Kunieda-san.”
“Oh, you already knew?”
“I didn’t, but would a tuna be happy if you praised it for tasting delicious? Of course, it’s delicious. Of course, everyone should praise me.”
“I don’t understand your comparison at all, but okay. Kunieda-san is an amazing announcer.”
“The most magnificent, awe-inspiring announcer to ever grace the world~”
“A man who loves announcers, who is loved by announcers~”
“Tokumitsu Kazuo? Kusano Hitoshi? Kume Hiroshi? Nay, he is the father of all announcers!”
“His incredible announcer skills have made him a man whose life is targeted by the likes of CNN, BBC, and Al Jazeera!”
“Winner of the Announcers Grand Prix for Most Surprisingly Boring Autograph and Semi-finalist of the Announcers Grand Prix for Most Surprisingly Boring Autograph!”
“You wanna say that again?”
“His bank account balance, including the allowance he used to get from his parents, totals 21.7 million yen!”4
“Don’t rattle off a number that sounds almost real!”
“The pin code to his ATM account is 2102. Just remember the mnemonic device: dual personalities… Hmm, seems doable.”
“What the hell is doable!?”
“Why don’t you give it a try?”
“No way, no how!!”
“Please, sir, I would love it if you could give it a try.”
“Even if you ask nicely, the answer is no!!”
“You can top me if you do it.”
“……No, the answer is no!!”
“I’m surprised that you even considered it for a moment.”
(First published in a blog post celebrating Third Place in SUGOI JAPAN’s Best Light Novel Category in March 2017.)
—–Translated by daydrop. Please read on the original site at daydrop.nowaki.net.
- 10,000 yen – Approx. $100 USD.
- Strawberry Day in Japan is January 15th because ichigo sounds like 1 and 5. The reason why it is not January 5th is because ichigo can also mean once in a lifetime and that day is reserved to encourage 15-year-olds preparing for exams.
- Ushio and Kei’s exchange is a riff on the comedian Sunshine Ikezaki’s famous, over-the-top introductions rambling about how great of a comedic genius he is.
- 21.7 million yen – Approx. $217,000 USD.