Wacky Japanese Hijinks

or how I stopped being afraid and learned to love Japan

(no subject)

K, it's been a while since the last post. Sorry about that. My mother and sister have come to visit so it's been a bit hectic.

Alright, so Moti and I went to Comiket for the videogame-and-such day on Friday. Comiket is huge. I was totally unprepared. Moti has said "twice or three times the size of Otakon." I have seen the anime Comic Party and that estimate had seemed vaguely right based on their representations. I had heard about the crowds and the lines, but I've been in lines and crowds at big conventions before.

Comiket is insane. Otakon gets about 15,000 people in a whole 3-day weekend. Comiket got, by my rough estimate, about 100,000 people on the single day we were there. We stood in line outside in the rain for an hour just to get in even though the convention had already been open for 2 hours. There's no entrance fee or anything, so the wait was simply because the place was that packed. I made a panorama of a chunk of a single one of the 3 huge dealer halls. Without stereoscopic imagery, I don't think you can really understand how many people were in this room and how big it was, but I had to try. Everywhere was packed. The hallways were as crowded as the dealer rooms, but were many times as long. I got a couple cute ICO doujinshi and some great Suikoden III artwork. There were some weird things tho. One guy was selling floppies with SEGA Channel games on them. Another table was selling NEWLY DEVELOPED games for old, dead systems like the Nuon and Jaguar. There was also some good cosplay. Especially for Guilty Gear XX characters. Interestingly enough, I don't know if I saw a single male character actually being played by a guy. It was like reverse Kabuki.

Reene and Moti went the next day too. Reene got Harry Potter doujinshi, as well as Buffy, Ally McBeal, and Pirates of the Caribbean.

Going to harajuku, having shaved ice sundaes, and feeding whipped cream from your crepes to the cats seems to be becoming a tradition here.

Oh, I went to the Meiji Jingu shrine. Always pass by it. Never went in before. I was big. It also had impressive god-trees.

Yesterday, while I was in Shibuya with my family, we saw two guys playing soccer, sideways, suspended by ropes, with a ball on a tether, 20+ stories above our heads. Ah, Japanese marketing. Well, I'm sure gonna remember Adidas now.

Deep Thoughts

This guy was playing a wind-instrument keyboard in Akihabara. Really well.

Finally got to Yuurakucho to see the Hentai Arcade Games. Laserdisc-quality video of women masturbating, fucking, and licking bananas while you play majhong. Whee! Oh, smearing ketchup on their breasts too.

Saw this guy in Omotesando yesterday. It wasn't even Sunday! I think that's my favorite costume to date. Check out the neon borg shit on his face. Y'know, in NYC I walked around in my purple velvet coat and feathered hat and attracted stares. Here, I wouldn't stand out at all.

One of the weird foods I've not quite gotten used to here is drinkable jelly. It comes in all sorts of containers and flavors. Basically, it's sports-drink-flavored jell-o. It's good, but very weird.

Dreaming petit towel -- translation: washcloth.

Eyeglass store named Erotica. Why?!

Condomania sells condom omamori (shinto charms) here. They say "protection against disease" in kanji and look just like the ones you'd buy at a shrine except instead of a paper blessing, they contain 2 condoms.

Whenever you buy a book here, they put a plain cover on it for you at the store. I don't know for sure how this began, but I remain convinced that it continues so that no-one knows if you're reading porn. It's something akin to seeing someone drinking out of a brown paper bag. Everyone KNOWS it's liquor. BUT, if all drinks were in paper bags -- no-one would know for sure. It's genius I tell you!

Reene and I have an aquaintance in Ube (down in southern Japan) who also keeps an LJ. He recently wrote an amusing entry you all should read. It involves monkey vaginas. Who doesn't like monkey vaginas?


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