Twitter users claim that after a recent snowfall Tokyoites were greeted by eight times as many Hachikos as usual. But is it a loyal doggy miracle, or just an adorable bit of photo editing?
After several weeks of what’s been a fairly mild winter, the Tokyo area got its first significant snowfall this morning. There was actually enough icy slush dropped on the capital that rail service was temporarily suspended along a number of train lines heading into downtown.
That made for an aggravating commute, but Japanese Twitter user @May_I_bite claims that passengers passing by Shibuya Station at least had something to brighten their trip to trip to work or school: multiple copies of the statue of Hachiko, Japan’s famously loyal dog.
スアレスbot (@May_I_bite) January 18, 2016
As is so often the case in pun-loving Japan, there’s a bit of wordplay going on here. While Hachiko is the name of the famous Akita dog which waited more than nine years for its master to come home from work after suddenly dying at the office, written with different Japanese characters hachiko can also mean “eight,” which is why someone thought to give the iconic statue seven siblings.
Online commenters had the following to say:
“There are hachiko Hachiko!”
“Hachiko is using ninja magic to make copies of himself.”
“If it wasn’t for the black one, you wouldn’t be able to tell which one is the real one.”
However, some skeptics think the extra pooches look a little too similar to one another, and claim that the tweet in question is a Photoshopped duplication of the single snow-Hahciko that was spotted two years ago.
らすく(二次英語19) (@rasq_sk_E19) February 14, 2014
While we haven’t been able to track down any photos of the two-year-old snow sculpture from the angle shown in @May_I_bite’s tweet, Hachiko’s hat and neck covering, which are not part of the statue ordinarily, are a perfect match between the tweets from 2016 and 2014. As such, it seems like the eight Hachikos are nothing more than an adorable flight of fancy.
However, there’s still some snow on the ground, and the forecast calls for freezing temperatures overnight. So if you’re ready to make the eight Hachikos a reality, grab your snow boots and head over to Shibuya Station ASAP.