Day 8 in Japan: Nothing Much Happened. Free Food.

My webhost was down for a while so I didn’t post it yesterday, but rather on Day 9′s morning. Just a heads up, today (day 9) I’ll be going to Akihabara, with Brandon, a friend from NUS now working in Japan and coincidentally, living really near my dorm, and Ryo, the oft-mentioned Japanese student with a tsukkomi wit of level99. Finally, Ryo has a friend, a "true otaku pro", as he says, who’s interesting in meeting gaijin otaku, so he’ll be doing the tourguiding for us. I’m beginning to suspect that the Japanese have become wise to the fact that I am an anime expert. I mean, I appear to know every single series they mention, be it manga or anime, and across the genres. So they asked me if I like the type of anime with pretty girls in it, I was like, "No, those are for otaku. I like sci-fi."

Funnily enough, they say people who like sci-fi in Japan are also otaku. I guess that’s why rubbish romance shows like Koizora are popular.

I managed to shrug off the Monkey and the other girl, since they were adamant on going to Tsukiji fish market, a popular touristy spot for fresh sashimi. They had heard that it was real cheap there. I suppose it is, comparatively, but having to wake up at 4 am to eat slightly less expensive sashimi is probably no fun. It’s all the way in Chuou as well, too far for me. They wanted to go to Akiba together with my group, but I told it was for boys only, and they annoyingly kept insisting. They appear to have this misconception that Akiba has a giant building, 7 stories high, full of nothing but porn, sex toys and fetish items. I have so far failed to convince them that Akiba is made up of small buildings, each store is multiple stories high so it sounds impressive but really isn’t as awesome as one might imagine, and there are many buildings there of which only one (or possibly more), Ms,, fits their description. Even so, I don’t think it has anything that much more kinky than what we can find elsewhere.

Back to what happened yesterday!

The professors decided to slack off and gave us the whole day to do a massive 27 man group work and presentation, on the topic "The sustainability of the river Nile". We divided up into 4 groups, namely the pre-dam goals and factors group, the socio-political group, the economics group and the ecology group. The latter was my group and consisted solely of science students, which was hilarious because all of us used peer-reviewed journal papers for our information, while the arts students in the socio and econs group appeared to use weird shit from online sites. Anyway, this resulted in a huge contradiction in the final presentation, but since it isn’t graded, nobody really suffered for it. It was a relatively fun day school-wise.

The evening was spent on dinner with my professor, who’s a marine biologist, and head of the biology department in my university. He felt left out of the faculty group as he was the only one who didn’t bring family members along, so the rest were off in their nuclear families. Being a beer-addict, he asked us, the Singaporean students, to go and we brought Druggie. I’ve come to the realisation that Druggie has been getting lots of free good food by just sticking to us, it’s quite funny. Us Singaporeans are good at this free food thing.

As is the custom in Asia, the senior treats, and he told us to order what we wanted. We ended up with an overly huge spread, with sushi, a few dons, 6 yakitoris, 6 of those sakuraebi mashed with vegetable tempuras, a whole grilled large squid, and some other stuff. The conversation was funny, or disturbing, depending on whether you think the professor was joking. He joked that we should eat all the sharks and dolphins and whales, since they are apex predators and they eat our fish. I’m sure he’s joking, since his main field of research is coral restoration, so he’s an environmentalist. He told us stories of the various exotic meats and fishes he’s had, such as dolphin, whale tenderloin sashimi, etc etc.

Oh and I’ve finally spoken online to Danny Choo, I’m not able to attend his figurine show since it closes at 5 for some reason and I end my lessons at that time. I guess if schedule permits, I should be meeting up with him on Tuesday.

12 Responses to “Day 8 in Japan: Nothing Much Happened. Free Food.”

  • “They appear to have this misconception that Akiba has a giant building, 7 stories high, full of nothing but porn, sex toys and fetish items.”

    Actually, one of the Toranoana buildings there has 7 stories, and in the store directory nearly every floor has the 18禁 label. It didn’t have sex toys or fetish items though.

  • there is a 7 storey porn shop in akiba……… i’m not joking, it’s somewhere in the inner streets. don’t ask me how i know, i was hunting down for food when i saw it… AND GET ME SOME STUFFFFFF

  • Well, there’s Love Merci if they’re really interested. It’s pretty much 6 or 7 storeys of porn and sex toys. The BSDM 7th floor is somehow, always closed whenever I go. :\ Uh, I bought a tenga from there.

    “while the arts students in the socio and econs group appeared to use weird shit from online sites.”

    What. I am so embarrassed. :( ARTS STUDENTS PROVE YOURSELVESSSS!!

    Hey TJ, if this otaku pro is hot, introduce him to me HAHAAHAH. Just joking. I still want to meet this guy though. And RAH-YOU. (Do you know, I keep thinking of ラ油(the hot chili sauce) instead..)

    And sigh, all these girls with their misconceptions. Tsukiji sushi isn’t any much cheaper? It’s just fresher? I mean, if you want quality goods you’ve got to pay for ‘em. I can’t remember if the tuna auctions are still on, but I personally think that the best part of Tsukiji is dodging the crazy carts and looking at angler fish.

  • Can’t wait to catch a flight there myself and knock down all the discrepancies.

  • You can bring them to AV Factory in the backstreets near one of the kebab junctions

  • and going the extra mile for cheap stuff- that’s such a cultural trait for Singaporeans, huh?

  • @0ne:

    …While universally common, this trait is more prevalent with Singaporeans and Hong Kongers. (If you ask me, both countries’ cultures are as about the same — sans the “multiculturality of the People’s Island Republic” —.)

    I’m interested to see all the mentioned buildings commented here. Next time I get stranded in Japan, I’ll put this in my itinerary list.

  • Looking forward to see the akiba write-up. =]

  • The 7-storey porn store with sex toys is the place I bought you your Tenga 2 years ago. It’s rather prominent, you can’t miss it.

  • LOL@ LianYL
    i wouldn’t take your professor’s pep talk lightly if i were you, people tend to loosen up when they are drunk, perhaps he, like the rest of us mere mortals, really dislike studying the same thing over and over again. either that or maybe he thinks you youngsters relish seeing the world burn for some reason…

  • That professor was a pretty cool guy.

    Eh, eats whales and doesn’t afraid of anything.

    I wonder if Akiba has changed much. I last went there before the troubles started. Is the Akihabara of my memories just that, a memory?

    Eagerly awaiting your Akiba report.

  • Eh. Tenga presents please.

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