Japan's Annual Festival Where Babies Compete To See Who Can Cry The Loudest

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I hands down know I would be a bad mother based on one fact: the sound of babies crying makes me want to simultaneously rip my hair out and single-handedly gauge my eyeballs. 

Strong, I know, but being trapped in a confined space with a baby crying is a seriously stressful experience – thanks for going through it, Mum.

But it appears that the people of Japan, or Tokyo to be more precise, have got a higher tolerance for infantile screaming than I do. In fact, they even hold their own annual festival to celebrate the wails and squeals of tiny ones. Called Nakizumo, the festival is held in the capital’s Sensoji Temple in Asakusa and sees 160 babies born the year before compete in the festival which celebrates and prays for their health.

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It makes Glastonbury seem like a doddle… The babies are held in a ring by amateur sumo wrestlers who try, via gentle shaking, dancing and scary masks (?!) to make the babies cry. Whoever cries first and loudest is meant to be the healthiest baby, who will then go on to live a happy and long life.

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It sounds like years of counselling in the making to me, but the event is much-loved in Japan and seems to be a pretty light-hearted:

Do you fancy heading to Nakizumo? Let us know in the comments. 

Images: Metro

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