Need an umbrella?

When I lived in Tokyo I had this weird habit of picking up umbrellas that people left behind on trains and busses. With a spare umbrella I could always offer a stranger an umbrella, share a smile and continue my day. Then I found out that bars would throw away hundreds some nights and this blew my mind. I had to get those umbrellas and I did. So there I was living next to a park with a busted awning. In my best Kanji I wrote a sign that said “need umbrella: take umbrella, spare umbrella: leave umbrella” and put 20+ out. After a few days I noticed a few were gone and it didn’t bother me because I had hundreds. One night I came home after it had been raining a lot and they were all gone. The next morning I opened my door and there were over 3 dozen and a thank you note with an action figure of the big chubby guy on Doaemon. It was amazing. Fast forward a month. I’m walking with my friend and they point to a house with several cylinders in front of their house containing a few umbrellas each and a note just like mine. My friend said it wasn’t there last week. I had a copy cat! I asked my other friends if they had seen borrow umbrella signs and they had started popping up around town! It was amazing. In a city of 35m people I started a thing. Then I moved back to the USA and haven’t touched an umbrella since.

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