Nihon no Hyoujun (What’s Normal in Japan) is a fascinating homepage that asks people to write in and vote on questions like: “Do you use wash you hands in the stream of water that comes out of the toilet tank?”, “At what age does a person become middle-aged”, or “What flavour did you order the last time you went to a ramen shop?”.
The site is in Japanese only, but if you would like to check it out, the URL is: Unfortunately the site is not available anymore. 🙁

The last time you went out for ramen, what flavour did you eat?
Soy: 27%
Tonkotsu: 14%
Miso: 11%
Salt: 9%
Tonkotsu Soy: 4%
Kimchi: 2%
Tonkotsu Miso: 1%
Other: 31%

Do you wash your hands in the stream of water that comes out of the toilet tank (No, Japanese people don’t wash their hands in the toilet bowl. The water comes out of the cistern at the top)?
Yes: 73%
No: 27%

Do you lock the door when you use the toilet?
No, never: 29%
It depends: 28%
Yes, always: 25%
Only when I sit: 18%

Have you ever confessed that you loved someone in a love letter?
Yes: 46%
No: 54%

What is your favourite type of onigiri (rice ball)?
Umeboshi: 21%
Salmon: 15%
Tuna flakes: 6%
Plain: 6%
Mentaiko (fish eggs): 5%
Kelp: 5%
Sea-chicken and mayonnaise: 4%
Mentaiko Mayonnaise: 2%
Cheese: 2%
Other: 35%

When you were a child, did your family celebrate Setsubun (the Bean Throwing Festival)?
Yes: 32%
No: 68%

What kind of computer do you have?
Apple: 16%
Fujitsu: 13%
NEC: 12%
Custom-built: 10%
Sony: 9%
Dell: 6%
IBM: 5%
Gateway: 5%
Sharp: 3%
So-Tec: 3%
Toshiba: 2%
Hitachi: 2%
Matsushita: 2%
Compaq: 2%
Epson: 2%
Sharp: 2%
Other: 5%

At what age does a person become an “Obasan” (middle-aged woman) or “Ojisan” (middle aged man)?
Age 30-34: 40%
Age 35-39: 31%
Age 40: 29%

How much “allowance” do you give to your elderly parents to supplement their pension every month?
0 yen: 58%
10,000 yen: 7%
20,000 yen: 11%
30,000 yen: 14%
50,000 yen: 7%
100,000 yen: 2%

Do you close your eyes when the dentist is working on your mouth?
Yes: 50%
No: 50%

Had you used your heater by November 11th this year?
Yes: 75%
No: 25%

If the convenience store clerk asked you if you wanted your onigiri heated up in the microwave, would you be surprised? (It’s only done in some parts of Japan).
Yes: 48%
No: 52%

Do you pull up your pants before or after you flush the toilet?
Before: 73%
After: 27%

Where do you put the thermometer when you take your temperature?
In your armpit: 78%
Under your tongue: 20%
In your ear: 3%

When served grilled salmon, do you eat the skin?
Yes: 68%
No: 32%

Can you name all 47 of Japan’s prefectures?
Yes: 57%
No: 43%

Have you ever tried on-line dating?
Yes: 18%
No: 82%

How much money do you spend for lunch every day?
0-199 yen: 8%
200-399 yen: 25%
400-599 yen: 29%
600-799 yen: 21%
800-999 yen: 8%
1000-1199 yen: 5%
1200-1399 yen: 2%
more than 2000 yen: 2%

When you sit on the toilet, how far do you pull your pants down?
To below my knees: 51%
To above my knees: 29%
To my knees: 20%

How many Chuugen (summer gifts) do you plan to send this year?
None: 65%
1-3 gifts: 29%
4-6 gifts: 0%
7-9 gifts: 2%
10-19 gifts: 4%

What kind of birth control do you use?
Condom: 63%
Abstinence: 5%
The pill: 3%
Early withdrawal: 9%
None: 20%

How do you handle a CD?
With one hand, putting one finger in the hole: 57%
With one hand, without putting a finger in the hole: 21%
With both hands: 2%
Other: 20%

Until what age is it appropriate to put your kids’ photos on a New Year’s card?
Up to age 3: 18%
Up to age 5: 21%
Up to age 7: 25%
Up to age 9: 7%
Up to age 11: 3%
Up to age 13: 13%
Up to age 15: 1%
Up to age 17: 3%
Up to age 19: 5%
Up to age 22: 1%
Up to age 30: 2%

Do you eat the tail when you have fried shrimp?
Yes: 51%
No: 48%
Never eat shrimp: 1%

Do you own a negligee (women only)?
Yes: 22%
No: 78%

When you take a pee, do you use the opening in your underpants?
Yes: 46%
No: 54%

Do you walk on the escalator?
Yes: 52%
No: 48%