In Japan, there are about a million convenience stores in every major urban center. These places of business don't offer gasoline, but numerous snacks and beverages and a quick chance to escape the heat if you're out and about on a summer's day. Furthermore, the plethora of services they offer truly make them worthy of their "convenience" moniker.

However, as the pandemic barrels onwards and Japan attempts to cut down on waste, numerous franchises are considering closing at night. Most chains—again, living up to their name—are open 24/7/365. Furthermore, more are struggling to find staff for graveyard shifts. In order to enforce anti-monopoly laws, the government is even getting involved as of late.

The news probably comes as a relief for many employees who struggle to maintain out-of-sync schedules—we’ve covered the insomnia and health problems involved before. Yet, I can't help but wonder what such a change means in terms of convenience store clientele. Open all night, there must be the occasional unexpected guess that makes an impression—for better or worse—on the staff.


In a recent manga post, artist Kenji Yajima (@yajima_kenji) covered this very issue. The illustrator used to work at a convenience store, where he met a frequent patron who was hard to forget.

Reproduced with permission from Kenji Yajima (@yajima_kenji)

Reproduced with permission from Kenji Yajima (@yajima_kenji)

Hopefully, someone apologizes first, and they make amends.

Readers responded to the peculiar anecdote:

  • “The staff were kind people who naturally accepted what was ‘normal’ for other people.”
  • “That was an amusing story. I wonder if she was able to makeup with her teddy bear.”
  • “I laughed at Mr. Mizutani’s reaction. I wonder if that’s PC.”

If you liked this manga, be sure to check out Kenji Yajima’s Twitter feed and website. Enjoy!

By - Luke Mahoney.