Keeping the streets of Tokyo clean is a self-effacing superhero going by the name of Mangetsu Man. Clad in a bright purple bodysuit, with a big yellow smiley head, this anonymous man has taken over the responsibility of keeping the Japanese district of Roppongi clean and garbage-free.
Mangetsu, in Japanese, literally means “full moon”, a somewhat apt name for this affable round-faced hero. And his choice of weaponry, as one can guess, consists of a dustpan and a broom. His philanthropic activities started back in October 2013, with Nihonbashi being the original “base”.
What is more, this charming grime-fighting superhero has quite a prolific online presence, with social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter being flooded with photographs of him in action. Besides the times when he is busy sweeping the streets, the Mangetsu Man is seen entertaining people through funny street plays, inspirational Buddhist mantras and incredible basketball skills. One can also find him sightseeing with tourists, photobombing pictures of other people or standing in his signature posture with his head bowed and hands clasped in prayer.
Talking about himself, the Mangetsu Man says that his job is basically “praying, supporting world peace, social reforms, preserving Japanese culture, and spreading peace and happiness”, while his hobbies comprise of “repaying kindness and filial piety”. His website provides a wealth of information, including trivia about his substantial bodyweight of around 200 pounds and the schedule for the upcoming months when he will be visiting the Ise Grand Shrine and other well-known religious places in Japan, to spread his message and of course, tidy up the locality.
The cleansing efforts of the Mangetsu Man seem to be working as more and more volunteers are joining him in his fight against filth and garbage. So why shouldn’t you?