”But do you accept Hayao Miyazaki as anime’s lord and savior?”

Even in Japan, a country where not bothering other people is often held up as one of the highest societal ideals, there are still people who think the best way to save your soul is by knocking on your door or stopping you on the street to talk about their religion. The problem gets a unique wrinkle in Japan, however, since one of the country’s other social ideals, avoiding direct conflict, often makes it hard for people to say “Stop talking to me!”

Luckily, Japanese Twitter user @sanma_mama has developed a technique for derailing religious conversion speeches without having to directly tell anyone to shut up (translation below):

Religious solicitor: “Can I have a few moments of your time?”
Me: “Actually I’m kind of busy right now.”
Religious solicitor: “Please don’t say that. I just want to talk to you about something that will be very useful to you in life: the Scripture of the Bible.”
Me: “After you’re done talking about the Bible, can I spend just as much time talking to you about anime?”
Religious solicitor: “But…I’m not that interested in that…”
Me: “And now you know exactly how I feel.”

@sanma_mama’s unique solution won him praise from a number of online commenters:

“That’s a totally useful strategy.”
“So brilliant. Going to use this next time one of them starts talking to me.”
“Ah, so next time someone tries to tell me about their religion, I can get them to stop by telling them about this week’s [issue of Shonen Magazine].”
“I bet I could also get them to leave me alone by talking to them about Bad Lobster.”

However, if you’re trying to give a religious solicitor the brush-off by playing up your otaku passions, you might want to be careful not to make too big a deal about your love of light novels, because that line of conversation could lead you right back into talking about religion.

Source: Twitter/@sanma_mama via Hachima Kiko
Top image: Pakutaso
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Follow Casey on Twitter, where he wonders if all the religious solicitors in Japan buy their lacy white gloves from the same shop.