Meet the very busy “nothing renter” in Japan

Tokyo – Over the course of his 38 years, Shoji Morimoto has become accustomed to being told by family, classmates and co-workers that he is a “doer of nothing” – a boy who stands back and lets others take the initiative. ۔

So, after college and running away from one frustrating job after another, he finally decided that if the shoe fits, why not wear it. In 2018, unemployed, on a whim, the self-proclaimed lazy person opened a Twitter account entitled “Do Nothing Rent-a-Man” and began to offer the world his various companions – but a drop of sweat. Not even

“I lend myself to do nothing, which means I don’t make much of an effort,” he told CBS News sitting in a local park. He schedules three meetings almost every day. “I don’t start a conversation. I reply to chat, but that’s it.”

She has turned down requests to help clean houses, “be friends”, do laundry, have fun, visit a haunted house, and pose nude. But he stands to be the audience of a struggling street musician in the bitter cold, going out in shops and restaurants with painfully self-conscious people, and even sharing cakes with a lonely soul on birthdays. What

“People use me in different ways,” he said. “Some people are lonely. Some feel it is a shame to go somewhere alone (interesting) – they want someone to share their impressions with them.

“Surprisingly, there is a huge variety of personalities, situations and circumstances,” he noted. “It’s amazing to me almost every day.”

On a recent Saturday, he met a 30-year-old woman, one of his regular wives. After a heartfelt greeting, they quietly sat down to drink coffee.

The woman, who asked not to be named, said Mr Rental offered a safe place without a decision, no wire and no communication.

“Japanese women care about what others think, and don’t burden others,” she said. “It’s tiring. So getting rid of that craze is precious.”

The idea of ​​offering Plus One in restaurants or on shopping trips has never been heard of in Japan. But Morimoto was probably the first person to enjoy a wide range of “assignments” for the cost of the carfare and, if need be, food.

With nearly a quarter of a million people online, he roams around the city, and often outside, meets a steady stream of customers. The “hired man” has set the tone for this workaholic and conformist country.

After thousands of exciting contests, her experiences earned her a living. She has written four books, including a manga comic, about joining clients for a few hours in or out of a cafe, or even moral while filing for a client’s divorce. About providing help.

While his clients are very thirsty for women, some of the most exciting stories are of men who hurt a complete stranger’s ear. There was a young man, trapped in a soul-killing office job, who asked Rent a Man to meet him on the swings after work, so that the joy of being alive could be restored briefly.

Another unforgettable client was a lonely teenager who asked to share home-cooked meals, and an unbearable secret: his mother raised him in a life of crime, and a correctional center for his role in the robbery. I was sent. One woman left dead. And yet, the man told Mr. Rental that he was still a scapegoat for the mother who ruined his life.

Mr. Rental’s signature luggage, a blue hat and bag, and his incomprehensible little celebrity influenced the 12-part semi-legendary Amazon Prime series last year.

One married father told CBS News, “Critics say, ‘Get a job!'” But I don’t feel the need to respond. They deserve their opinion. ”

By evening, Morimoto was on the move again, with soft-spoken 44-year-old healthcare worker Tammy Miyazaki going for a drink.

“With a friend, you have to worry about whether they will like the bar or not,” he said. “But with Rental-Sun, he just says straight, ‘yes’ or ‘no’. It’s less drama than going out with a friend.”

Morimoto has given birth to many copycats, but he is just getting started. He resents that this is like a real job. He says there is nothing more fun than doing anything.