This Tokyo store lets you write a wish on a tile to help make your dreams come true.

Have you ever wanted to smash a set of tiles like a karate professional? Our Japanese-language reporter Seiji Nakazawa always has, but he figured it would be something reserved for the pros, requiring years of study and concentration, both of which are not Seiji’s strong points.

By his own admission, Seiji doesn’t like to move his body, with writing and gaming being the most strenuous things he does on the daily. But when he found out about a tile-breaking shop in a back alley of Tokyo’s historic Asakusa district, he couldn’t get it out of his mind — perhaps this could be the kind of low-effort tile-smashing experience he’d been waiting for.

Called “Kawarawari Kawarana” (“Roof Tile Smash Kawarana”), or “Kawara Smash” in English, this beautiful-looking establishment offers a variety of tile-breaking challenges for visitors.

A stack of five tiles or “plates” will set you back 2,000 yen (US$14.05), while 10 plates cost 3,900 yen. For 5,000 yen, you can attempt to smash the “Kawarana Record Challenge”, which consists of 24 plates for men or 16 plates for women, with your money refunded if you succeed (no refunds for other challenges).

Seiji opted to try the “Wishing Breakthrough 8 Plates Challenge” for 3,500 yen, before filling out his details on a form and listening to advice from staff on how to best complete the challenge.

Those who take part in the “Wishing Breakthrough 8 Plates Challenge” are required to write their wish on one tile, which is then placed at the bottom of the 8-tile stack. Seiji’s wish was for his band, Fresubt, to sell more albums, so that’s what he wrote on his bottom tile.

Now there was nothing left for Seiji to do but break those tiles! The man in charge, who speaks fluent Japanese and English, took Seiji out to the tile-smashing area to do just that, but before he got to the main event, he was fitted with a regular work glove and a punching glove.

Punching gloves are required to be used by all visitors for safety reasons, and Seiji was more than happy to protect his delicate story-writing, game-playing, guitar-strumming fingers.

▼ Then it was time for some brief instructions…

▼ …and a practice punch before moving on to the real thing.

His heart thumping in his chest, Seiji began to worry about what might happen if he weren’t able to smash through the stack to break that all-important wish tile that would send his wish up to the gods. He hadn’t consulted with his bandmates before writing his wish on the tile, so would calamity await them if he didn’t break it?

All the stakes were on him, and the plates below him, so he took a moment to clear his mind like a karate professional. In this Zen-like repose, Seiji raised his fist in the air…and pummelled it down through the tiles.

▼ How did it go? Take a look at the video below for the full reveal, with the tile-smash coming in at the 1:25 mark.

As the video above shows, Seiji was able to smash through all eight tiles, including the all-important bottom tile that he’d written his wish on.

We haven’t seen Seiji grin like that in a long time, and even after staff told him eight tiles is the sweet spot for guaranteeing success in most cases, Seiji’s smile didn’t wane. He’d used the force, and his fist, to produce more action than his body had in years, and now he was looking forward to becoming an international rockstar and rubbing shoulders with his beloved soul brother, Swedish guitarist Yngwie Malmsteen.

Don’t forget us when you’re rich and famous, Seiji!

Store informaton
Kawarana / カワラナ
Address: Tokyo-to, Taito-ku, Asakusa 2-27-17
Open 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Closed weekdays

Photos © SoraNews24
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[ Read in Japanese ]