Not just any beans. Roasted soybeans known as fuku mame (fortune beans) are thrown out the door in the direction of unsuspecting evil spirits—and sometimes a senior male member of the family designated to don a demon mask and play antagonist for the occasion.
Setsubun celebrations have become fun, chaotic affairs in some cities. Crowds jostle and surge for beans (eating them is good luck), prizes, and freebies tossed from public stages—often by celebrity hosts. The events get televised, sponsored, and heavily promoted.
This and ball season in Austria both appeal to my inner aristocrat.
I loathe this month. It’s always cold and gray and depressing. I’m buying lottery tickets so I can dance in Austria or party in Nice or just hang somewhere where it’s sunny and warm.