Japanese voice actor 大塚明夫 Akio Otsuka is known for such roles as Solid Snake in the Metal Gear video game series, Marshall D. Teach / Blackbeard in One Piece, Batou in Ghost in the Shell, and more recently, Jigen Daisuke in Lupin III (as of Part 6, Episode 1).

While he is most appreciated for using his deep, calm voice and prodigious acting talent to bring many beloved characters to life, Otsuka is also known to delight fans with witty comments and episodes from his daily life posted on his social media account.

On August 15th, 2022, the legendary voice actor posted a single photo on his Twitter account.

Of all things, the photo was taken inside a public restroom. Apparently, Otsuka was bewildered by a paper towel dispenser.

During the ongoing pandemic, hand dryers have been disabled in most public bathrooms in Japan in the belief that they can potentially spread the novel coronavirus. Therefore, in toilets that didn't have them to begin with, paper towel dispensers have sometimes been added.

Otsuka's attention was drawn to a perplexing message obviously made with a tape printer and stuck on the bottom of the front panel by the facility operating the bathroom:

Pull paper towels out with both hands.
Please take paper towels with dry hands.

"Mph... (stifled laugh)
With dry hands...

How am I supposed to...?!"

Most people use paper towels in the bathroom to dry their hands after washing them. Needless to say, hands are usually wet right after they've been washed with water...

You could follow the second request if you only washed one hand and the other one was still dry, but the problem is the first request. You have to pull the towels out with both hands.

It's no wonder Otsuka had to hold back his laughter at such an unreasonable set of instructions...

His post elicited many reactions, including some with suggested solutions:

  • "Is this some kind of riddle?!"
  • "Maybe they expect you to take some paper towels before washing your hands...?"
  • "Just wait until your hands are dry the natural way..."
  • "I couldn't stop laughing when I read that in Otsuka's dandy voice lol"

As it turns out, Otsuka had his own solution in mind, which he mentioned in a follow-up Tweet:

"Of course, I wiped my hands with my own handkerchief."

This episode serves as a reminder and a tip for people visiting Japan. Since many public bathrooms have no paper towels or dryers installed, it's a good idea to have a handkerchief with you at all times.

By - grape Japan editorial staff.