The organisers of a penis festival in Japan are throbbing with anger over a unofficial giant member mascot that people have mistaken for a genuine one.
Since 1969, people have gathered in Kawasaki near Tokyo for the annual Kanamara Mitsuri, also known as the Festival of the Steel Phallus.
In recent years, the Shinto gathering has become something of a destination for cheeky tourists – or for those who honestly want to celebrate a rather X-rated legend.
But one regular attendee has been drawing the wrong sort of attention for their costume, which could politely be described as ‘excessively detailed’.
The grotesque outfit, which has been worn at the event for at least the past eight years, depicts a version of a cuddly children’s cartoon character named Gachapin.
Gachachin, as the costume has come to be called, retains the character’s doleful eyes, single tooth and stripy chest, but has incorporated them into a spine-chillingly realistic penis complete with lifelike colour and, unfortunately, texture.
You can scroll down to see a picture of it, but consider this a strong warning.
Festival organisers the Kanayma Shrine have decided to set the story straight with people on the internet, who seem to believe Gachachin is an official representative of their event.
They said: ‘As of March 2023, there are no official mascot characters for our Kanamara Festival.
‘We do not officially recognise the costumed mascot called Gachachin, which is being treated as an official mascot on the internet, in any way whatsoever.’
The Kanamara Matsuri festival is based on a local story about a demon taking revenge on a woman who rejected his advances.
According to the legend, the creature began living in the woman’s vagina and would bite down hard on anything that entered, in order to prevent her from having children.
So the woman hired a blacksmith to fashion a steel member, which shattered the demon’s teeth and thus restored her fertility.
A replica of the metallic dildo is preserved in a shrine in Kawasaki, and will be paraded at this year’s festival on April 2.
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