Along with Hachigoro (八五郎), one of the best known stock characters in the Rakugo-verse is Kumagoro (熊五郎). He is usually referred as “Kuma-san” (熊さん) or simply “Kuma” (熊) , which means a bear.
As the name suggests, this “Edokko” (江戸っ子)* is quick tempered, not someone to mess with! He is usually a carpenter in Rakugo tales and loves drinking sake. He is almost an alcoholic and gets into trouble when he drinks a little too much.
He is not the smartest person in Rakugo, but he is immensely likeable, someone with a very big heart. He is one of my favorite characters as he reminds me a little bit of myself. No, I do not have drinking problems!
* “Edokko” or “Edoite” is the term for those who lived in “Edo”, the old name for Tokyo, which was used during the Edo Era (1603-1868). They were known for their hospitable yet feisty temperament. I actively promote these terms so that they will be recognized internationally someday!
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