Hiroi Michiaki: Hmm.
Mrs. Hiroi: That’s a puppy.
Janell Landis: Hehehe.
Hiroi: This one is difficult to explain, isn’t it?
Mrs. Hiroi: Mm… Because the bottom, on the bottom there’s also a painting.
Hiroi: How should I explain this. Umm…. how to explain it… Anyway, when you remove this–
Mrs. Hiroi: Yeah, you can take all of it apart.
Hiroi: The head and this part become a top.
Mrs. Hiroi: The head.
Hiroi: And here, on the bottom, there’s a painting. A tengu and okame** are painted… Ahh…. and, in other words the worries of the world are expressed here. And the sulking dog is thoroughly troubled.
**okame is a popular theme for masks in Japan, often seen in traditional kyogen or dengaku performances and festivals. Okame is an plain-faced woman, featured together here with the tengu probably as symbols of reproduction.
Mrs. Hiroi: Yeah.
Hiroi: He’s very worried.
Janell Landis: (laughs)
Hiroi: And in the case of Japan, this kind of thing is a good omen. Umm… for the prosperity of your family, for example. Lots of things. It’s a very good omen. Explaining it is a little… yeah, it’s a little hard. (laughs) In other words it’s a top that expresses the suffering of the world..
For Japanese, see this page.
For video, see this page.