Do you have any rituals that you do before a big exam or meeting? Do you wear your lucky shirt? Carry a lucky penny? Shadow-box in the mirror?
If you were a student in Japan, you and your friends might carry a popular good luck charm to exams–and it isn’t what you might think. While preparing for an exam, students make sure they have a pencil, calculator, eraser, and…. Kit Kat?
Kit Kats have been a favorite candy for years, and hearing their jingle (Break me off a piece of that KIT. KAT. BAR.) will cause it to get stuck in your head for hours. But why is the Kit Kat bar regarded as a good luck charm in Japan? When you translate Kit Kat in Japanese it sounds like ‘Kitto Katsu’ which means ‘to certainly win’. Japanese students regard the candy as a way of saying ‘I will certainly pass this test’.
I love the positivity and alternative meaning attached to one of my favorite candies. The next time I eat an entire fun-sized bag of them I can tell myself that it was to ensure success in future ventures. However, when I indulge in Kit Kats in the States I have access to a pitiful amount of flavors in comparison to my Japanese friends. Peach, Strawberry, Red Bean, and Sakura are a few examples of flavors that I will never get the luxury of trying unless I go to Japan (or can find someone kind enough to post them to me).
From now on I’m going to bring a Kit Kat to my exams. Hopefully, it will give me the luck I need to get high marks. If not, I can always eat it to soothe the pain of a disappointing score. A win-win in my books!
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