Apologize for 20 seconds early departure

Last month, something happened that it must happen only in Japan.
One train left 20 seconds earlier. The train supposed to left 9:44 40 seconds, but the train left 9:44 20 seconds. The rail company, Metropolitan Intercity Railway Company, MIR, released a apology.  (BBC, 2017 http://www.bbc.com/japanese/42023075)

When train arrives or departs 1 minute too earlier or has delays, it is a big issue for Japanese commuters, but this time, the company apologized for “20 seconds”! Even though the most punctual people in world are Japanese, they don’t really care about a 20 seconds difference. In Japan, there is a famous phrase “Customers are gods”. Being punctual is very good for customers, but sometimes Japanese workers have to work too hard to keep up with excellent service.


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