The Day After

April 19th, 2005

What *does* one do on the day after a revolution?

If I was feeling obnoxious, I’d say, “I’m going to Disneyland,” but since there’s NO way I’d do that, the answer is – one takes a day off to recharge and reboot.

We decided that, as it was Sunday, to take in the waves of humanity at Harajuku. The last time I was there, it was New Year’s weekend and while mobbed, had a noticeable lack of youthful color. This time, on a beautiful warm April Sunday the gothlings, punklings, goth-lolitas, fruits and sundry were out in little clusters of twos and threes. No one had the guts to be cool and different by themselves – the majority of the pairs were girls, with the very occasional boy/girl pair where the guy had the distinct look of someone trying desperately to impress a girl. The guys tended to clump in hip-hop or reggae cool, and of course there were gaggles of school uniforms wandering around. Navy blue, can you believe it?

We watched a bench press contest for a while. They weren’t actually bench pressing, but they were dead lifting a fair amount of weight.

Here’s a woman deadlifting what we figured was about 45 lbs:

Here’s a foreigner being interviewed by a TV crew. We don’t know who she is, offhand, but we guess she’s an idol type:

This guy has a unique style of his own:

And this seemed to be the dominant meme, along with Hot Topics-like punk (which I adore, so I was happy.):

Goth Lolita seems to be morphing into a punk that is heavily influenced by The Nightmare Before Christmas. Since one of my best friends dresses like that all the time, she’ll be pleased to be ahead of the curve for a while.

These two girls were done up to the nines:

We wanted desperately to be thin enough to buy clothes in this heavily Takarazuka influenced store:

After a few hours of that, we were frankly wiped. P and my eyes were strobing and we were dizzy from too much visual stimulation. Donna was feeling poorly, too, so we opted to crash back at the hotel before attempting some kind of dinner plans.

There was a wedding at the hotel, below our room:

Now, a very dear friend who I have seen exactly twice in my life, had informed me that she would come to Tokyo to see me. We met four years ago when Ogata Megumi came to New York and I geeked out and joined the tour. Masako-san and I hit it off pretty quickly and we’ve been emailing sporadically since then. What an amazing person she is! Not only did she travel for hours to see someone as unworthy as myself, she graciously allowed all my ducklings to come with us. So it was that 10 of us went out for a nice intimate reunion.

This is what I have come to think of as a “random Ikebukuro moment” and things like this appeared much more often than you’d think:

Lorelei, our youngest Yuricon member and Masako-san hit it off really well:

And they both made friends with this giant panda:

We had been seeing a goofy movie poster over two slacker types on a motorcycle, dressed up in a sort of wacky faux Edo period get-up all over town, and when we hit this window exhibit and the light bulb went off, I coveted the t-shirt mightily:

The deal is, that they are Yaji and Kita, the original wandering comedic pair, only this time, they are doing a x-country on a bike, it seems. I want that shirt!

Masako-san and I discussed very profound things like squid and Marimite – and she confirmed what we all know: Saying Sei is your favorite character is like saying the sky is blue. :-)

Masako-san and myself:

The evening was spent wandering around Ikebukuro and scattering cash over random stores. Too soon Masako-san had to go, and we crawled back to the hotel and slept like the dead.

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3 Responses

  1. punistation says:

    “Masako-san and myself”

    I’d ask if we’re gonna get a Newtype-effect version of that happy snap, but I don’t know what “newtype-effect” means.

    Kisses XXOOXX

  2. I think the likelihood of that is nil, as “newtype effect” means the portrayal of two female anime characters (usually straight) draped over each in suggestive fashion.

  3. punistation says:

    AH, so THAT is what all those ML messages meant. ^_^

    Oh well, if not the last pic, maybe the one with Ikebukuro?

    Kisses XXOOXX

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