Whenever I google a topic related to Japan, and sometimes even when I don't, I almost invariably pass over ads with headlines the likes of: "Japanese Girls Looking for Western Men" or "Japanese Women for Dating". This does not happen when I search for countries like "America," "England" or "Australia," but just try typing in countries like "Thailand," "Malaysia," or "The Philippines" and you'll be bombarded by "matchmaking services" on any search engine that enables sponsored links.
Oddly enough, the demons living in the margins of my email account also assume that I want to date Japanese women. Although I have an American IP address, I am almost always looking at Asia-related content. So according to the rule of lowest common denominators this can only mean one thing: that I am a white male in search of a delicate lotus blossom to love me long time.
I may have been able to reluctantly accept this trend as The Way Things Are, if so many of the informative Japan-related sites I know and love didn't feature dating sites in their own margins. Even rikai.com, the most amazing website on the net and my personal translation savior, has a column for "Rikai Friends." In the English to Japanese section of the website, our featured Rikai Friend is usually a young, attractive Japanese female who's looking for a "language exchange partner". Click on the Japanese to English (translation help) page, however, and suddenly our "featured friend" has become a less than clean shaven white dude who thinks he speaks Japanese, but doesn't know that he talks like a little girl. (Colloquial Japanese is incredibly gender specific, which is why it's not the best idea for guys to learn all their Japanese from their girlfriends.)
But actually, these specific profiles are in no way specific to Rikai. It seems that a number of English Language sites about Japan are connected to the same network, seeing as the featured "member profiles" tend to be identical.
Greeting me whenever I want to read the news about Japan in English or look at otherwise cool content, here are some of this week's featured "friends":
Somebody think i am a pretty girl!
To love as if you haven't get hurts before
It's fantastic when I go to the disneyland.
In my opinion, this method of advertising shows that these dating sites exist largely for the purpose of hooking up foreign men who are aroused by broken English with Japanese women who Really want free language lessons.
And if you ask me, I don't think it's really in anyone's interest for these people to procreate. But nobody ever asks me, because that's none of my business anyway. Still, I do wish that people wouldn't act out their fetishes in spaces where I'm forced to witness them.