A sense of urgency as Jiro Hachimitsu launches a “job search support site for comedians | FRIDAY DIGITAL

A sense of urgency as Jiro Hachimitsu launches a “job search support site for comedians

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Jiro Hachimitsu’s growing sense of urgency about the fact that even popular comedians are no longer able to eat due to the Covid-19 disaster

Jiro Hachimitsu, a member of the talented duo Tokyo Dynamite, has launched a new service to support comedians. It’s a matching service to help comedians find jobs in general companies.

A year and a half ago, Jiro Hachimitsu found a job at an IT company in Tokyo with the determination to continue being a comedian while protecting his family and livelihood. Based on this experience, he started the matching service out of a desire to somehow support comedians who are struggling with the Covid-19 disaster and declining income.

A comedian and a job. At first glance, it may seem like a “mismatch,” but what he wants to create through this service is a “new way of life for comedians. Nonfiction writer Kenta Tasaki spoke with him about the current situation of comedians, and his thoughts on the launch of this new service.

I almost died a year ago.

It was about a year ago, on December 14, 2020, that Jiro Hachimitsu of Tokyo Dynamite noticed something wrong with his body. He couldn’t stop coughing since morning. When he took his temperature, it was 38 degrees Celsius. I was scheduled to work remotely all day that day. After work, I gave strict orders to my wife and daughter to wear masks even in the house and not to come to my room, and lay down.

It was cloudy that morning. When the sun went down, the temperature quickly dropped to below 10 degrees Celsius. Feeling cold, I took my temperature again and found it to be 39 degrees. Concerned, my wife contacted my doctor. The doctor replied, “If it’s just a fever, just lie down and see what happens.

There was a reason why he had a doctor he could consult right away.

In July 2018, Jiro felt breathless in a cab on the way to Shin-Osaka Station after performing on stage in Osaka. He collapsed before the reception of the hospital where he was hurriedly headed, and was hospitalized in an emergency. It was acute heart failure caused by pneumonia. It is said that his blood oxygen saturation, which indicates the ability of the body to take in oxygen, was at an abnormal level of 60; when it is below 90 percent, the body is unable to send enough oxygen to all the organs. He was recovering from a near-death experience.

That’s why Jiro was on the lookout for a new coronavirus.

He was dying of acute heart failure and his blood sugar level was high. I have what is called an underlying disease. My doctor told me that if Jiro contracted Covid-19, he would surely become very ill.

That’s why I always made sure to wear a mask, gargle, and disinfect my hands. Since the declaration of the state of emergency, I have only taken the subway and the bullet train once each. I avoided dense situations at all costs.

Learning from his acute heart failure, Jiro had acquired a pulse oximeter to measure the oxygen saturation in his blood. His body temperature dropped to 38 degrees Celsius, probably due to the antipyretic he had taken. However, his blood oxygen saturation level was 88, which meant that he was in a life-threatening condition before the new coronary disease.

As I lay on the bed of the ambulance, I could hear them communicating with the hospital by radio. After several hospitals refused to accept him, he was admitted to the fourth hospital, according to Jiro’s memory.

He was told that he would have to have a ventilator inserted through his mouth, and that he might have to have a catheter inserted through a hole in his neck. I was told that I would be given general anesthesia for this. After that, I must have been moved to the intensive care unit, but I was barely conscious.

All I remember was a man in a protective suit tapping me on the shoulder and telling me, “PCR test, positive. I had no memory for the next eight days. I was later told that there was a 50-50 chance that my life would be saved.

The hospital had a rule that if the PCR test did not come back completely negative, he would not be discharged. Jiro was kept in the hospital room even after his condition returned to normal. He was discharged from the hospital on January 15th.

During his hospitalization, his income as a comedian was zero.

I was prepared for the fact that entertainment is a private business and there is no guarantee. However, I was working for an IT company, so 70% of my salary was paid from there. This really helped me.”

The experience of working for an IT company led to this service.

In April 2008, the year of the Covid-19 disaster, Jiro was invited by an acquaintance to work at the IT company Sonorite. The fact that an active comedian got a job made a big splash at the time. The contract called for him to work as a company employee except on days when he had to work as a comedian on stage or on TV. He laughed sarcastically and said, “I used to say that comedians don’t have money to spend at night, and that they would die in the end, but now I’ve learned the importance of employee benefits.

Life is hard even for popular comedians

On January 21, 2009, Jiro announced on Twitter that he had tested positive for the new coronavirus and had become seriously ill. The news was widely covered by TV wide shows.

I must have appeared in a total of about a hundred programs (asking me to talk about Covid-19). There was a time when I was in the waiting room of a hospital and they saw me on TV. The old man sitting next to me was watching it and talking to his grandmother about the importance of a pulse oximeter to put in your finger. I was right next to him. I’m right next to him, but he’s wearing a hat and a mask, so he doesn’t notice.

When he regained enough strength to perform on stage, he resumed his entertainment career. What he saw there was a group of comedians who were struggling to make ends meet.

In the 90s, when I was just starting out, comedians were popular as long as they could get on TV. In the 90’s, when I was just starting out, comedians were popular if they could get on TV, and my feeling was that there were about a hundred comedians who could get on TV at that time. After that, I was able to appear on “Enta no Kami” and “Bakusho! Red Carpet,” the number of comedians who were able to appear on TV increased to over a thousand. That’s when I was weeded out by the remote (recording) at Covid-19, because they were going to reduce the number of people from the studio. Now, the group of people who were just starting to emerge and appear on TV are gone in droves.

Yoshimoto Kogyo, to which Tokyo Dynamite belongs, has theaters all over Japan. However, the number of comedians who can star in their shows is limited. Local sales have almost disappeared in Covid-19.

A comedian who was on TV at one time and is quite well known is now working part-time six days a week. Traffic control, civil engineering. The guys who are less successful and have wives and kids are all doing Uber Eats.”

Uber Eats is a type of gig worker, or independent business contractor. It is defined as signing a labor contract with a company on demand to provide services to that company’s customers. To put it simply, they are part-time hourly delivery workers.

They are borrowing money from the government on an unsecured basis because they don’t have any money (*Special loan for new coronavirus infection). (*Special loan for new coronavirus infection.) If you have a certain level of performance, you can get a loan. But this is just a loan. I have to pay it back sooner or later.”

Jiro didn’t have to rely on these loans because of his income as a company employee. As he got used to this new job, he began to think, “Maybe my experience as a comedian will be useful as a company employee.

Companies are looking for comedians.

In order to make the audience laugh, comedians are always observing and thinking about what is interesting in daily life. It is a process of planning and realization. When they go on stage, they are judged on the merits and demerits of their plans. Think about what will be received by the audience. This is marketing. To begin with, making people laugh is a way of communicating with others. In human relationships, laughter is a lubricant. It contains elements that are necessary for work and organizations.

If this is the case, then there must be work that comedians can do in general companies.

In remote work, relationships are often strained, and people often become depressed and quit the company because of it. To prevent this from happening, for example, a comedian could start a radio station that can only be heard within the company. For example, a comedian could set up a radio station that can only be heard within the company, saying, “Mr. Yamada, how are you today? It could be a radio that only about 40 people can listen to. Comedians can do that kind of thing, can’t they? If you have the skills that companies are looking for, you don’t have to choose a part-time job.

At that time, I had a chance to talk with the president of a company that specializes in recruiting people.

He said he wanted to create a company that would support the second careers of comedians. He wants to create a company that supports the second careers of comedians, not by dispatching them, but by placing them in jobs.

Jiro nodded at his words, but made a condition. First of all, the company would not accept any commissions or other money from the performers. First of all, the company must not accept any commissions or money from the comedians, and secondly, they must have more options for working.

There are people who want to quit their jobs and get a job, but there are also people like me who want to be both a comedian and a company employee. There are some people like me who want to be both a comedian and an office worker. If you make them find a job, you are encouraging them to quit their job as a comedian. That would be meaningless, so they would be allowed to work and be a comedian only on weekends. I’m trying to bridge the gap.

It was not only comedians that Jiro had in mind.

I’ve been in the business for more than 20 years, so I know a lot of professional wrestlers and actors. There are also many wrestling fans on the corporate side. If you can have a professional wrestler in your company, then by all means, let’s do it. As for comedians, regardless of whether they are successful or not, there are people who want someone who is a mood maker or has good communication skills.

In December of last year, Jiro became an outside director of Bitmix and started Talent Career.

(The website of “Talent Career” -> https://talent-career.jp/ )

It is a service that matches comedians and other talents with companies. As we repeatedly discussed the business, we realized that there were two types of “talent” that companies were looking for.

The “Talent Career” website. It is a service that supports the second careers of comedians and athletes.

One is companies that want former comedians, professional wrestlers, athletes, and musicians to come to work full-time (as company employees), even if they are not famous. The other is a company that wants as many famous people as possible to come to work, even if they are not famous. In the latter case, if the president is a baseball fan, he can boast that there is a former professional baseball player in his company. They may even support your activities.

It’s not easy to sell tickets for a theater company or a professional wrestling company, is it? People might buy tickets because they feel a sense of familiarity with you as a member of the same company. If you are a professional wrestler or fighter, people might even make you a gown.

The company you introduce them to must be of a certain size and pay at least the minimum salary. We have a rule that the companies we refer to must be above a certain size and pay at least the minimum salary, and we don’t allow them to do extremely hard work.

At the root of Jiro’s desire to somehow support comedians is a sense of crisis that the premise of the entertainment business has changed drastically.

He says, “Comedians used to be invited to events at shopping malls. However, with the Covid-19 disaster, such events have disappeared. However, customers still come to shopping malls. The malls may be thinking, ‘Maybe we don’t need any more events to attract customers.

Jiro feels that the pockets of comedians are getting colder as their appearances on stage as well as on TV are decreasing. He also feels that if the most efficient way to earn money, “(event) sales,” were to disappear, he would dry up. That’s why we have to create a foundation where comedians can live in peace.

“Comedians definitely give their wives a hard time, especially if they have children. Especially if they have children. In the past, it may have been a virtue to make one’s wife cry for the sake of one’s art. But from now on, you can’t make your wife and children cry anymore.

He felt this way because he himself had contracted a new type of Covid-19 and was on the verge of death.

When he heard that his wife cried, but his children cried all the time, he thought, “I can’t make them sad anymore.

Geishas” change, too.

Comedians change with the times.

I wonder if people want to see comedians like us, who grew up being punched, kicked, and yelled at when we were young. We are no longer in that era. In our time, all comedians were high school graduates, but now there are many who have graduated from good universities. Nowadays, there are a lot of comedians who have graduated from good universities, and their parents may be wondering what they are doing now that they have sent them to university. But if I can create a path for them to get into a major company after working as a comedian for two years, the people around me will be relieved.

Nevertheless, the essence of being a comedian remains the same.

Standing in front of an audience in the spotlight has a narcotic appeal. Comedians are people who are fascinated by the momentary pleasure of laughter. They, like Jiro in the past, are reluctant to accept the stable life of a company employee.

Jiro once asked a comedian if he could apply for this business he had started. He had gained popularity on TV, but was now working part-time six days a week to make ends meet. The people around him asked me to help him out somehow.

He said, “It’s easier to work part-time.

He refused, saying that he felt more comfortable working part-time. He likes the fact that he can quit anytime or take a break anytime. I guess that’s why Uber Eats is so popular. But it’s okay if you want to work only four hours a day, for example.

Giving up on the performing arts and taking up other professions was called “comedian collapse. Jiro said that from now on, he would be a “rising comedian,” and that he should get a job as soon as possible.

I think I came back to life to save comedians in trouble because of Covid-19.

The Covid-19 disaster has changed the way of life for many people. The Covid-19 disaster changed the way of life of many people, and the way of life of comedians should also change.

  • Interview and text by Kenta Tasaki Photo: Kazuhiko Nakamura Kazuhiko Nakamura

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