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So last year on November 11 (that’s Pocky Day) I thought I was pretty clear in my explanation on what Pocky Day is. Apparently not clear enough, though. This year, it’s time to help you to make sense of this crazy, contrived, and television advertisement driven “holiday.” Personally, when it comes to made up holidays, though, I’m more of a Festivus kind of guy.

What Is Pocky Day?

First of all, what is Pocky? For those of you who don’t know, Pocky is a popular snack all around the world, but it’s probably most popular in Japan (since that’s where it comes from). When it comes to Japanese treats, though, these are the ones that you’ll see all around the world. Basically, they’re breadish / cookie-ish sticks with chocolate on them. You grab them by the un-chocolatey side and then start dancing.

[yframe url='http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OJVjlQ3BSrM']

There is one special day, though, where Pocky (supposedly) reigns as king of the snack world, and that day is “Pocky Day,” which lands on November 11 (11-11) because that date consists of a bunch of ones, which are, of course, shaped like Pocky. On 11-11 (Pocky Day) you are supposed to buy lots and lots of Pocky, or something, because that’s just what people do… or, that’s what the “It’s Pocky Day!” commercials suggest. Don’t even think about not assimilating with the Pocky Borg.

How “Pocky Day” Got Started

Strangely enough, Pocky Day was stolen, in a few different ways.

In Korea there is a snack called “Pepero,” which is basically just Pocky with a Korean name.

Pretty much what happened was that Lotte (who makes Pepero, first sold in 1983) pretty much ripped off Glico (who made Pocky since 1966). At least one thing came from Pepero in Korea, though, and that is “Pepero Day.” Apparently it is similar to Valentines day, and young couples exchange Pepero, candies, and “romantic gifts.”

So, I guess to try and get Pepero back, the girls and gals at Glico said “Hey, Pepero’s making a ton of money in Korea from their Pepero day, let’s teach people to do that in Japan, too!”

As for the origins of “Pepero Day,” Wikipedia says that “Pepero Day was started in 1994 by students at a girls’ middle school in Busan, where they exchanged Pepero sticks as gifts to wish one another to grow “as tall and slender as a Pepero.” If that’s not a romantic start to this holiday, I don’t know what is.

Although “Pocky Day” is a thing in Japan, from what I’ve read it’s not as popular as Pepero day. Still, Glico is spending money on Pocky Day ads in Japan, so there must be something going on.

To Celebrate…

Unfortunately, I don’t have any Pocky to give to you (go to your local grocer and buy a box!). Instead of real Pocky, here are the best Pocky commercials on YouTube for you to enjoy. Although I may not eat Pocky on Pocky Day, I will enjoy these videos of other people eating Pocky for me. Yum.

[yframe url='http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KSDBwPztxZY&NR']

Another YMO video… these one are a bit creepy

[yframe url='http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wGEehy_2TrY']

Dance!

[yframe url='http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iTN03fM1Dzc']

Anata Mo Watashi Mo…

[yframe url='http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wHsbuQN4lZo']

Pocky makes arranged marriages fun again

[yframe url='http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=giZtyYGjH1Q']

D’awwww

[yframe url='http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qdalvWYAv_w']

This one takes a really quick turn… for the better?

[yframe url='http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2XbzVPmWMHg']

Holy Crap! So Retro!

[yframe url='http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LBIsFcAtDCU']

Kind of reminds me of those weird Palm Pre commercials…

[yframe url='http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iwQzsvm9qBw']

Another “Crap I Can’t Belive That Happened” Commercial

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  • Solista8

    I saw the same thing in England but the box didn’t have any association with it being from Japan…

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  • ANON.

    in norway, it’s a memory day, the memory of world war 1. it ende 11-11-1918

    11 o’clock :)

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  • Checkersxheart

    omg since my mum’s a veteran 11/11 and my birthday is the day after i can get an early birthday present lots and lots of pocky and say happy veterans day mum and an early birthday to me win win situation :)

  • Dinos_Epic_Rawr

    Pocky is soo yummy I just got 4 different kinds of flavors yesterday…..mmmm. I’ll probably have a stomach ache later but I will regret nothing!

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  • d…

    had no idea about pocky day…i was a pocky addict when i lived in japan…missed it by a day this year, but going to have to go and try to find a few packs in urban england tomorrow to make up for that!!…

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  • Nay Wangtal

    I know this is an old post, but hopefully someone will one day discover my post and go do it..
    “When it comes to Japanese treats, though, these are the ones that you’ll
    see all around the world. Basically, they’re breadish / cookie-ish
    sticks with chocolate on them. You grab them by the un-chocolatey side
    and then start dancing.”

    Please go parody a Pocky (and other glico products) commercials with whatever equivalence to Gangnam Style (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gangnam_Style)/Harlem Shake (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harlem_Shake_%28meme%29)of your era.

  • Emi-chan

    Here in Italy, too, they’re sold as “Mikado”. Too bad we’ve got only two flavours, “dark chocolate” and “milk chocolate”, and nobody knows today’s the “P-Day”! ^__^

  • DesertSpirit

    The Japanese were part of the Axis Powers. What war are you thinking about?

  • 古戸ヱリカ

    Well, back then I was probably thinking about World War I. You know, November 11th and all that.