Shigeru Miyamoto and His Habit of Measuring Things


As one of the most well-known big-wigs of Nintendo, a company with enough money to run at a loss for 5 decades straight, Shigeru Miyamoto is a name synonymous with video games, fun and fat Italian plumbers. But did you know that Miyamoto reportedly really likes guessing the length of various objects.

According to a 2009  interview with Shiggy about the immensely popular Wii Fit game, Miyamoto has an unusual preoccupation with trying to correctly guess the measurements of random objects he encounters in his day-to-day life. So much so, that, as noted above, he carries around a tape measure with him all of the time so that after guessing how big someone’s head or something is, he can measure it to see how close he was. Remember, this is a man who works for one of the biggest video game companies on Earth and presumably has access to all of the really cool shit they have lying around and one of his favourite hobbies is “guessing how long tables are”.

There's only so much Gameboy any one man can pay we guess.
There’s only so much Gameboy any one man can pay we guess.

Speaking of Wii Fit, one of the reasons Miyamoto was so interested in that game in the first place is because he has a strange fascination with how much he weighs and he’s revealed in the past that he measures his weight daily, recording the results on a big-ass graph. He’s so serious about this that he once went out and bought a set of high-tech scales that measure his weight to within the nearest 100 grams so that he could get more accurate results, because come on, did you expect anything less from a guy who carries around a tape measure all the time?

What really makes this quirk of Miyamoto’s so endearing though is that he seems to get a genuine buzz out of it and in interviews where he’s discussed it, it’s immediately apparent that it’s something that brings a big dumb grin to his face. Don’t believe us? Here’s a quote the man himself where he describes the internal thought process he goes through whenever he guesses something’s length correctly:

“I might guess that the table in front of us is about 1.2 metres long. Then I’d actually measure it with the measuring tape to check. If I got it right, I’d think: “I’m on form today!””

And that is the image we want to leave you with today. An elderly Japanese man carefully measuring a table in a room full of nervous looking businessmen who then proceeds to congratulate himself with a tiny fist-pump when he realises that he managed to guess its length correctly. Because that’s an image we think everyone can agree is fucking adorable.

Actual screenshot of an interview Miyamoto gave with a Nintendo employee.
Actual screenshot of an interview Miyamoto gave with a Nintendo employee.