Don’t take this job, please
Over the years I have noticed a peculiar habit among Japanese employers. You apply for a job, go to an interview, it’s a job that you want and you are happy when it is offered to you. But immediately after offering you that great job you want Japanese seem to pull back by saying something that sets all your warning bells ringing. Either they aren’t right in the head or else the job is not as good as you think and they are hinting at it for some reason. What happens is that often, right after offering you a job, Japanese will start to advise you not to take it. They offer it to you apologetically, regretting that it is not be a better job. What strange things to say to the person you are hiring about the position you are offering.
This happened to me right after I happily accepted my current job in the spring of 2004. The employer turned right around and advised me not to accept it because he didn’t think it paid enough for me to support my family. After that, for some reason, he tried to offer me an apartment to go with the job - something closer to work, something being vacated by a departing teacher - that was smaller than my current digs, and less appropriate, considering that I have a family.
“What’s wrong with this guy? Is he wrong in the head?” I thought.
It has happened to other people, including another teacher at my workplace more recently. We discussed it afterwards, after I reassured him that it was a good place to work, with good people.
Why are Japanese employers like this? I think it is the expression of a kind of modesty. Japanese employers don’t want to boast that it is a good job, so they downplay the job to your face, the same way like some people retain the old custom of insulting their wives by introducing them apologetically to friends as an “old bag.” It is a social faux pas to appear to be boastful, so I think they sometimes overcompensate by making statements in the opposite direction. It’s a cultural thing.