- Japanese girls spotted stepping on foreigner outside Shibuya Station in Tokyo
- Japanese bar hostess’ secret memo reveals how she really sees her customers
- Tokyo Dome-area capsule hotel accepts female guest, offers free noodles, and has a gorgeous bath
- Pet rodent causes a ham-stir with its amazing multi-level mansion【Video】
- Travel back in time to this timeless Japanese hot spring inn from the Taisho period【Photos】
- The beautiful cosplayers of Niconico Chokaigi 2018【Photos】
Posted: 01 May 2018 08:00 PM PDT
Passersby were shocked to see the man surrounded by women with cameras at the side of the street.
In a country where you can buy scantily clad life-sized figurines, sexy body pillows with wrap-around legs, and enough erotic magazines to kill a person, you’d be forgiven for thinking that Japan is a place where anything goes when it comes to sex.
However, in reality it’s very different, with Japanese society being so conservative that there’s not a lot of openness when it comes to people’s sex lives, and you’d be hard pressed to find any displays of public affection like hugging or kissing while out on the street.
So you can imagine everyone’s shock when they saw this display outside one of the busiest areas in Tokyo recently.
Pictures on Twitter show a woman clearly stepping on a foreigner’s head outside Shibuya Station. While it might look like a cause for concern, pictures from a closer angle show what’s really going on.
The man and woman in the picture both appear to be indulging in some shoe fetishism out in public. Unfazed by the stares of people around them, the woman could be seen shoving the toe of her boot into the man’s mouth, before proceeding to walk on his body, in full view of passersby.
Eagle-eyed Twitter users recognised the man in the pictures to be a foot fetishist who goes by the name “Lou-chan”. According to his bio on social media, Lou-chan, who is from Brooklyn in New York, speaks fluent Japanese and sometimes teaches English, and while he has an undying passion for Japan, the only thing he likes more than Japan is getting stepped on by women.
▼ He said he had a lot of fun with the girls outside Shibuya Station.
Lou-chan says he gets a thrill from being bullied by Japanese women, and judging from some of the images from his recent trip to Japan, he met a number of young ladies around the country who were happy to give him what he wanted.
▼ He was even interviewed by a radio station in Osaka (that’s him getting stepped on under the table).
Getting your rocks off by having dirty shoes shoved into your mouth isn’t for everyone, but for Lou-chan it’s a fetish that won’t be subsiding any time soon. And with so many fancy shoes on the market in Japan, he has a wide range of styles to keep him and his dominant female friends entertained well into the future.
Posted: 01 May 2018 06:00 PM PDT
Cynics won't be surprised, but unintended inside look at hostess bar shorthand still stings.
To many people who grew up outside of Japan, the concept of hostess bars is baffling. Their entire business model is built around charging high prices for customers to sit, drink, and talk with attractive young women, and yes, those are the only three activities that are supposed to be going on, since hostess bars make it clear that they're not strip clubs, sensual massage parlors, or brothels.
The secret to hostess bars' success is that while the eye candy is nice, what they're really selling is personal validation. In a society where people are often expected to keep their opinions to themselves both at work and in social interactions, there's a powerful allure to having someone listen attentively and enthusiastically to whatever you say, and a talented hostess' ability to make the customer feel like there's a personal bond between them is what keeps regulars coming back. Of course, it's the hostess' job to create that atmosphere whether she personally cares about the customer or not, which is illustrated in a tweet from Japanese Twitter user @otamiotanomi.
@otamiotanomi's friend recently took him out drinking at a hostess bar, and during his conversation with one of the hostesses she gave him her business card (yes, even hostesses have business cards in Japan). It's a pretty smart ploy, as, again, it helps create the feeling of an emotional connection, since why would someone give you her business card unless she wanted you to come see her at her bar again?
However, when @otamiotanomi got home and turned the card over, he discovered the hostess had given that particular card to him by mistake, because the backside was filled with her handwritten notes, as shown in the photo above. She'd been keeping a written record of which customers she'd served that week, which seems like a smart idea for someone in the service industry. However, instead of writing down the customers' names, she referred to them by some unflattering nicknames, with the notes reading:
The additional notation that Fatty and Baldy are the same guy suggests that the hostess may have not initially recognized Baldy when he came in on the 26th, despite having come to the bar both the previous day and three days prior. The gap between the facade of caring, personal service and the harsh mnemonic device had Twitter snickering, with reactions including:
Some even jokingly asked @otamiotanomi if he himself is Baldy, Beardo, or Fatty, but the fully-haired, clean-shaven, and slender Twitter user insists that none of the terms are applicable to him. Nevertheless, it's a reminder that when a hostess gazes intently at you with her long-lashed eyes, it's probably not because she's really in awe of your masculine sophistication but because she's looking for some visual quirk to latch onto so she can remember who the heck you are.
Posted: 01 May 2018 10:30 AM PDT
The often-overlooked Suidobashi neighborhood makes a great base for exploring Tokyo, and this high-class capsule hotel makes it even better.
In the beginning, Japan's capsule hotels were little more than bare-bones overnight shelters for drunks who'd missed the last train home. You got a coffin-sized sleeping compartment, and the fact that the clientele was overwhelmingly made up of inebriated salarymen meant that many capsule hotels refused to accept female guests, out of concern that they couldn't guarantee their safety.
In recent years, though, capsule hotels have stepped up their game and become viable options for travelers who don't quite need all the amenities of a full-service hotel, and definitely don't want all of the cost. In the process of becoming more comfortable, many have started accommodating female guests as well, such as Global Cabin Suidobashi, a capsule hotel that opened last winter in Tokyo's Suidobashi neighborhood.
Most capsule hotels are found in bar districts, but Global Cabin Suidobashi is instead located near Tokyo Dome, making its target marker out-of-towners who're attending concerts or other events at the venue, To that effect, the hotel's second-floor lounge gives off the vibe of a relaxing cafe. Instant soba noodles are provided free of charge, and guests can enjoy breakfast sandwiches and salads as part of their accommodation package.
As nice as the lounge is, though, the big surprise came when we got to our "capsule."
Instead of a door, the sleeping compartments in capsule hotels are separated from the walkways by a curtain, and there's usually a ladder or some other means to access upper-level bunks. But at Global Cabin Suidobashi, the curtains go from floor to ceiling…
…because instead of a sleeping person-sized capsule, you actually get a cozy two-tiered room, complete with a desk, stool, and full-length mirror in the lower section, and a bed with a TV up above.
Inside your capsule/room there's a power outlet and USB charging port, and even a rack with hangers to hang up your clothes. Oh, and while the TV is in the upper area, there's an earphone jack for it located in the lower area as well, so you can watch from the desk without having to crank up the volume.
Global Cabin Suidobashi also has some nice security measures. Though your room has no locking door, you do get a lockable safety box as part of the desk, which is big enough to hold your wallet, laptop, and other electronic devices.
Women's and men's capsules, and bathing areas, are located on separate floors. To access the women's floors, you have to use a wristband (given to female guests upon check-in) in the elevator, and you'll need to use it again to actually enter the women's capsules or bath area.
Speaking of the bath area, it's gorgeous, with a Japanese-style shared tub and single-person shower booths.
Makeup wash, lotion, soap, and conditioner are all provided (by respected brands Pola and Shinseido, no less), and when we stayed at the hotel, there were even rubber duckies in the women's bath.
Like we mentioned above, Global Cabin Suidobashi's location, just a one-minute walk from Suidobashi Station on the JR Chuo train and Toei Mita subway lines, means that many of the guests will be people headed to or from Tokyo Dome. But Suidobashi Station also makes a nice hub for exploring Tokyo. Akihabara, Shinjuku, and Ueno are all less than 15 minutes away, and it's less than 25 minutes to Asakusa, Shibuya, Ikebukuro, and Roppongi, meaning that a stay at Global Cabin Suidobashi lets you enjoy all of those exciting parts of the city, but stay in a neighborhood that's still quiet enough to let you get the rest you need to do it all again the next day.
Bath image: Global Cabin Tokyo Suidobashi
Posted: 01 May 2018 08:00 AM PDT
Pet hamster and its multi-storey residence have Japanese social media users green-eyed with house envy.
If you were an animal, what kind of animal would you be? To that question, many people would probably answer with something like an eagle, soaring over forest and mountain. Maybe a tiger, strong and sleek, or possibly even a dolphin, spiralling through the water with a perpetual grin on its face. After seeing a video posted by Japanese twitter user @pua_ratchada‘s pet and its enviable housing situation, though, a few more might consider the happy lot of the hamster for their answer to the question.
For many Japanese social media users, and at least one SoraNews24 writer, the hamster’s home is a veritable mansion in comparison to Japanese inner-city flats and their notoriously small size. Where many may only have a single room in which to eat, sleep and run around in circles in, this lucky rodent has the run of a sprawling, multi-floor home; it’s only a home cinema and a fireman’s pole away from being the ideal home.
▼ From top to bottom: third-floor living space/running wheel, bedroom, second-loor living space, first-floor living space, and athletic area.
Other Twitter users can plenty to say about the hamster’s awesome abode:
While this sporty residence might be fine for the young hamster about town, who likes to keep in shape with a jog around their own personal athletic area, once they get to the venerable age of two or three, they might want to move somewhere a little more traditional, perhaps like this ninja hamster home.
Next time someone tells you they would be a puma or a shark, spare a thought for the hamster and its home’s potential palatial grandeur. Plus, while the devil might have all the best tunes, hamsters too know how to get the club moving. They’re also more popular with, and able to get much closer to, the ladies than a (non-sedated) tiger.
Now to find someone to house me in equal luxury and feed me biscuits with which to fill my chubby cheeks, or, failing that, to go for a stay in a capsule hotel to recreate the snug coziness of living within plastic tubes.
Posted: 01 May 2018 06:00 AM PDT
You can practically taste the nostalgia permeating this Taisho-era ryokan in Kagoshima Prefecture.
We’ll never get tired of visiting ryokan, or traditional Japanese inns. An overnight stay at a ryokan can be not only one of the most rewarding experiences of your trip to Japan, but of your entire life. The inns typically come with attached hot springs, traditional futon-style bedding, some of the most amazing hospitality imaginable, and luxurious multi-course meals utilizing only the freshest and most seasonal of ingredients.
Ryokan come in all shapes and sizes, and many pride themselves on a signature quality or service. For one particular ryokan in southern Kagoshima Prefecture called Ichihino Onsen Midoriya, that special trait happens to be its remarkable architecture and furnishings from the short-lived Taisho period (1912-1926), a period characterized by a unique mix of traditional Japanese and newly introduced western aesthetics following the opening of Japan to foreign countries after the Meiji Restoration of 1868. In fact, the Taisho influence is so strong at Midoriya that travelers may feel they have been spirited away to a different age and place immediately upon entering the building, as shown in these photos by recent guest @goshuinchou.
▼ “The inn I’m staying at tonight is the best. It’s a building from the Taisho period.”
In a fun connection to the ongoing societal changes of the Taisho period, Midoriya has another unique claim to fame–Akiko Yosano, one of the most prominent (and controversial) authors, poets, and feminists of the time, once rested within its walls.
▼ “Apparently Akiko Yosano stayed in my room. Just as I was thinking that it would be nice to have a mysterious space called a ‘hiroen’ [veranda] by the window, I was ecstatic to find that there was one already independently built-in.”
The Twitter user also expressed gratitude for the inn’s timeless Taisho aesthetic coupled with its modern conveniences:
▼ “The place is called Ichihino Onsen Midoriya in Kagoshima’s Satsumasendai City. The three-story inn from the Taisho period has been preserved through continued maintenance. It’s a hot-spring inn which boasts a history of Akiko Yosano staying there in Year 4 of the Showa period . The food was also delicious. Even with Taisho era-architecture, it’s great that you can also use wi-fi.”
Here are a couple more snapshots taken by other Midoriya guests:
According to this former guest, the inn’s staff will even present you with some hot spring water on your departure!
If history is your hobby and you’d enjoy the feeling of being transported to another age, then you should definitely soak in the atmosphere at Midoriya on your next travels around Japan. Might we also suggest that you pack one of these “Taisho Roman” ensembles to enhance your experience?
Source, featured image: Twitter/@goshuinchou
Posted: 30 Apr 2018 10:00 PM PDT
The event is dedicated to Japan's Internet video makers, but these in-person cosplayers were who really caught our attention.
The annual Niconico Chokaigi ("Niconico Super Conference") is an unusual case of Internet culture coming full circle and returning to the offline world. Organized by Niconico, the company behind Japan's popular Niconico Douga video sharing service, the two-day Chokaigi is a gathering of creators both producing and inspired by online video content.
Anime and otaku-oriented media has always been a robust part of Niconico's video lineup, and so the Chokaigi is a popular spot on the cosplay circuit, with cosplayers marking it on their calendar along with the twice-a-year Comiket and annual Anime Japan trade show.
So while the rest of Japan was getting into vacation mode (or drunk mode) last Saturday with the start of Japan's Golden Week vacation period, our cameraman was hard at work on the opening day of the Chokaigi. An expansive cosplay area was set up outside the halls of Chiba's Makuhari Messe, the hosting venue, where the cosplayers seen here were waiting for us.
▼ It's a good thing the cosplay area was outdoors, because we're not sure if the Fate Saber cosplayer would have been able to fit her sword through the door.
Since the Niconico Chokaigi isn't a strictly anime event, we didn't spot quite as many brand-new characters. Re: Zero's Rem remains a popular costuming choice, though, even though it's been a while since the TV's series' finale.
Another always-viable cosplay choice: Cardcaptor Sakura, whether your inspiration comes from the original 1990s TV show, the currently airing continuation, or even the franchise's new themed cafe in Tokyo.
▼ No event dedicated to Japanese Internet stars is complete without a salute to original virtual idol Hatsune Miku.
And of course, there were plenty of idol outfits too.
This year's Niconico Chokaigi wrapped up on Sunday, but we suspect we'll be seeing some of these talented and dedicated cosplayers again at other otaku events in the near future.
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