Saturday, November 1, 2008

A Very Random Halloween

So, I had full intention of actually planning out my first Halloween in Tokyo. I did a bit of research like a good little boy and thought that I was ready for a pleasant evening. Well, the god of chaos frowned on me for turning my back on him. He sent a jolt of electric current down my spine and demanded that I bend over and do the brown eye smile. As punishment for making plans to celebrate Halloween I was cursed to a night of randomness.

A spell was placed on me and I did not wake up on the 31st until around 2:00 pm. I woke up feeling all warm and happy wrapped up in a thick soft blanket. The gal must have been nice enough to wrap me up into a comfortable position before she left on a little mini-holiday to her home town. For a moment I thought about just drifting back off into a deep sleep. It is real easy to just say screw it and not get out of bed when there is no work to attend. I knew that I had to get up because it would be a damn shame for me to sleep away my first Halloween in Tokyo. I forced myself to get up and took a long relaxing shower.

After surfing the net for a while and finish waking myself up for a few hours I started getting ready to head out. I did not buy a costume, I know that I should have pick one up but I just did not feel like going though the trouble this year. Last year in West Virginia I dressed up as a cop just for laughs. That was an interesting night. There is something about a man in uniform that drives the ladies wild. Although, this year I just dressed as my usual self. I wanted to remain low key and not attract any kind of unwanted attention.

By the time I made it Shibuya it must have been around 6:00 pm. There was plenty of people out and about. A lot of attractive, hungry for the night, types who are like juicy poison apples; they give a lot of pleasure to bit into but can send you on a trip to hell and back real quick. Now I had already slammed down a tall boy of 7 strong on the Joban line so I felt relaxed not even close to rocking a beer buzz. I kept another one hidden away in my inside jacket pocket for later.

It proved to be an excellent night for people watching in Shibuya. So many people in costume! I saw a lot of different creative and entertaining costumes that I cannot comment on all of my favorites. While just hanging at the Shibuya meet up spot it is worth noting two of my favorite costumes I laid eyes on. There was this one really sexy Japanese gal wearing almost nothing. She was wearing a bunny outfit that was something out those old playboy bars from back in the late 70`s and 80`s. It was pure eye candy for sure. I also say this guy who looked just like the joker. A real professional make-up job. It was impressive to say the least. I actually, talked to the guy for a few minutes. He was cool enough. He told me that he had a friend who did make-up for a production company in Tokyo. He was even nice enough to give me a shot from a little bottle of whisky he had stashed away in this coat pocket.

After a while I wanted to walked around so I headed to Yoyogi park. I expected the park to be alive with action but to my surprise it was all silent for the most part. I did talk to a few skater punks for a little while. One of them spoke good English so we talked about punk music and smoke a few cigs.

I ended up at the Hub in Harajuku. The gals working there were dressed up all sexy like in the spirit of Halloween. This one gal had a dead sexy little red ridding hood outfit on showing off a nice pair. I could not help but look at her way too much. I don`t think she cared too much as I was respectful enough to leave her to her work. I was setting at a round table with a couple of white guys on vacation from the states. They were a little rough around edges but hell I am used to that kind of attitude. We struck up a good conversation and swapped a few stories.

Around 11:30 pm we made our way over to Shibuya though Yoyogi park. For some damn reason we ended up at one of the Hubs in Shibuya, It was full to the brim with gaijin and Japanese college gals. Everyone was trying to get laid. This crowd would have been better off going to a swinger club than an English pub but to each his own I guess. I had started to grow tired of the my present company. The more drinks they had the more asshole came out of them. As luck would have it the gal called me which provided me a good excuse to get out of there. I found a semi-calm back street and talked on my cell with the gal for what have must been two hours.

The night ended with me passing out at a really nice internet cafe. I woke up around 6:00 am and made my way back to my apartment to get ready for work. It was a fun evening for me overall. I stayed low key and enjoyed myself in a mellow kind of way.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Too Weird to Live, Too Rare to Die

I guess the title of this post may be the best way to describe me. The post title came from a book I read by Hunter S. Thompson. I remember reading Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas when I was a freshmen in college. The book had a profound effect on my life. The one quote from that book which has always stuck out in my mind was, `He is too weird to live, too rare to die.` I have often thought about the meaning of the quote over the years. Now that I live in Tokyo I have come to understand what good old Hunter S. was talking about.

I have never been the prototype `cool` American guy. OK. So, in high school I was a starter on the (American style) football team. Also, I spent way too much time in shop class building muscle cars. Although, I was not Mr. popular. In fact, I ran with a gang of misfits who would rather hang out at the abandoned swimming pool getting drunk on a Friday night than go to the school dance.

In college I studied journalism and minored in human personality. I was the kind of person who stayed up all night in college. If someone wanted to smoke a joint, drink some beers or just have a place to hang with a gal my dorm room,and later apartment, was always open. I served on the editor staff of the student paper(although I did no copy editing. I left that job to some guy who would work for free weed). The kind of people who knew me in college were those who wanted to rebel but were too rich and too average to pull it off on their own. Those unhappy rich kids nicknamed me Mr. Vice. Those days really shaped who I am today in many ways. Although, in those more simple and carefree days I did not understand Hunter`s meaning of `Too weird to live, too rare to die.`

Tokyo has shown me what Hunter was trying to tell me. I have finally come to understand that I am not like most people. For many years I was under the impression that I was just another person in this world. I did not consider myself to be all that different from the mainline of society. I guess the reason for my lack of understanding that I was different is due to the fact that I was living in the south deep in the mountains of West Virginia. In West Virginia people tend to not point out someone who thinks or behaves differently(they simply try to beat the shit out of you when they think no one is looking) . Usually, birds of the same feather flock together in West Virginia. So, I thought that I was basically the same as most people. Although, I was fully aware that I was strange by redneck standards. I was the guy, in high school, who dated the gal from Korea so the rednecks avoided me at all cost. I should have realized that I was different the first time I took my then Korean girlfriend home to make out and smoke pot. My father, who scored me the pot in the first place, said to me, `Boy! You and that yellow girl sure are a strange pair. People are talking you know.` I brushed off his comment at the time but now I understand more then ever what he was telling me. I do not do things like most people.

Tokyo has shown me what I could never learn about myself living in West Virginia. I tend to life a lifestyle that is kind of bohemian in nature. I now understand that I enjoy living slightly outside of society norms. I enjoy doing things which are considered to be unacceptable by society. It gives me a feeling of freedom which I cannot get from walking the straight and narrow path. Tokyo allows me to fully indulge in the underground and off beat aspects of society.

In West Virginia people called me a strange version of James Dean. In Tokyo I have found people who like me just the way I am. I have made friends with people who like the idea that I carry with me a James Dean type of vibe. I often blush when Japanese say, `You look like James Dean. Have a drink and spend some time with me.`

So, for all you people who want to hate on me and point out every little mistake I make go fuck yourself. Really! Most likely you live a lifestyle I could never accept for myself. I assume that you are not different and you have never experienced anything underground and free-spirited. In fact, I think that those who take the time to hate on me actually want to break out from the norm but are too chicken shit to do it on their own. Deep down inside they hate their life but they are trapped. Instead of making a change they spend their time giving me asshole and unwanted comments on the internet. I do not hate them. I feel sorry for them. I have found myself but they are still lost. Yes it is true, I am too weird to live and too rare to die.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Under the Rader

For the past few days I have been laying low in Tokyo. My activities have been limited to work, a couple of dinner outings, and a Sunday evening hair cut . In four days I have not had a single drop of beer or other spirits. I have not ventured into the depths of Tokyo after hours in several days. I have really had no desire to be out and about much at all. This does not mean I have not been thinking and planning for the near future.

As I have been kind of living under the radar as of late it has given me time to plan out some decent merry making as a opposed to random chaos. Tokyo offers so much if a person just takes the time to do a little research and touch base with a few connections. While it is easy enough to fire a shotgun into the water and see what floats to the surface; a more refined approach can offer even larger rewards.

Tommy the Painter rides Again!

For example I was getting a hair cut in Harajuku on Sunday when my friend Tommy the painter calls me. Tommy is a real keen guy so talking to him takes a little focus. His mind moves from one thought to the next so fast that it is sometimes hard to make heads or tails of what he is trying to say. From what I able to pick up from our conversation he has been hanging out with some hippies from the mountains all weekend in Yoyogi park. They gave him some hippie stuff and something else as well. Tommy wants me to hang with him at the bridge in Harajuku Thursday. I look forward to another adventure with Tommy.

My First Tokyo Halloween!

This Halloween will be a first for me in Tokyo. I have checked-out the almost endless options to have fun on Halloween. It appears that every bar in town is offering some kind of costume party or all night drink fest. It really is hard to choose which place to celebrate the best holiday in the world. There is way too much vice for one guy to handle in Tokyo on Halloween. Tokyo offers enough vice as it is, but now the whole town will be crawling with goulash drunk city folk who want nothing more than to burn the city to the ground. I have picked out a place but I am still not sure if I will actually go. I mean, I want to be out on Halloween having a little fun but I want to make sure I pick a place that fits my personality. In the end no matter how I choose to celebrate Halloween I am sure it will be a hell of a good time.

Horror Punk at the Earthdom.

My favorite underground punk bar and my favorite Japanese punk band have finally come together. Balzac will be playing at the Earthdom in Shin-Okubo this November the third. Balzac takes a lot of their influence from the Misfits. Despite the heavily influenced Misfits look and style, Balzac stands tall as a band in their own right. I have not heard or seen anything else like Balzac come out of the underground punk scene in Tokyo. They take dark punk metal to a whole new level. I have not seen this band play in several years so I am going to be there come hell or high water. From the looks of things I can most likely finish work with plenty of time to get to the Earthdom. I hope my work schedule does not change because I usually finish work at 6:30 on a holiday but if things stay the same at work I can get off at around 5:00 on November the third. The show starts at 6:30 so I am really hoping to get off work early. Either way I am going to that show! If anyone would like to join me just let me know and I will try to set it up.

So, I may have been flying under the radar as of late but the near future is filled with more adventures. I can only guess as to the tales I will gain and the experience I will earn. Although, that is what I think of life in Tokyo in general.