The Kanbari Nyudo is a hairy, goblin-like creature in priest’s robes that peeks in on people using their toilets on New Year’s Eve. Worse still, if you are unlucky enough to be licked by one, you will be cursed with constipation.

According to legend, however, if you enter the bathroom between 1 and 3 a.m. on New Year’s Eve and chant ““ganbari nyūdō” three times, a human head will appear in the toilet. Tuck it under yourleft sleeve, bring it back to your room, and it will turn into a gold coin.


Tenjo-kudari appear as naked old ladies with unkempt hair and hideously long tongues. They creep out of the crawlspaces of your home at night and hang from the ceiling, waiting to drop on unwary sleepers or anyone foolish enough to get up for a glass of water.

Awakened by a sound in the dead of night? Don’t worry. It’s not a ghost. It’s probably a Tenjo-kudari!


The adorable cucumber-loving Kappa are amphibious creatures, prone to pranking and occasionally dragging their victims to a watery grave. Bow to one and it will politely bow back, emptying the water on top of its bowl-shaped head, thus robbing it of its power.


If your lamp oil has been running inexplicably low of late, it’s possible you’ve been the victim of a Rokurokubi. At night, when this cursed woman sleeps, her neck elongates to incredible lengths, allowing her head to roam far and wide, exploring homes and lapping up lamp oil.


The Gashadokuro is a giant skeleton formed from the ghosts of unburied soldiers and starvation victims. It stalks the forests invisibly at night, biting the heads off its victims so as to enjoy the arterial spray. It may give itself away by the chattering of its massive teeth.

Today’s Yes/No…

2 thoughts on “September 6, 2022: Your Handy Guide to Weird Yokai!

  1. So like all good fairytales these mostly seem to teach good behavior; don’t roam the forrest at night looking for that keg party or the monsters will get you and pee before bed so as not to wake the whole house the racket and cold drafts of you going to and from the outhouse.

  2. Ah yes, the beloved Kappa. I always thought that story was funny. No doubt they inspired the tortoise-like Kojin beast tribe in Final Fantasy XIV.

    Did you watch Sailor Moon? It was a big part of my childhood.

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