Little House In Ise

“Last call for drinks” A Survivor’s Guide
October 5, 2006, 03:20
Filed under: Japan | Tags: , ,


Me again… you remember me, right? No? Hmmm… what to do? Oh yeah! A rambling letter! That ought to do the trick!

In a fit of beer-induced clarity I made another profound break-through in my understanding of Japanese culture. Or at least Japanese stuff. So, of course, you get the “benefit” without the headache, bleary eyes or angry spouse.

Ahem, for a good time call… no, no, not that one. Errrr… Yes! Here it is…

When you feel a desperate need to sing your throat raw, all night long then _don’t_ go to a bar. They have strictly observed closing times, especially in “gods’ country”, and you will likely hear the dreaded phrase, “Last call for drinks” or the Japanese equivalent much earlier than you want. “What to do,” you ask? Well, say no more, this can easily be remedied by packing an assortment of your own favorite beverages into a bag and hauling them over to the local rent-a-car dealership.

Perhaps more detail will help. Imagine a crew of severely impaired Japanese businessmen, business-women and a couple of foreigners (possibly included for comic relief) parking at the local equivalent of Hertz. They stumble through the parking lot and are greeted enthusiastically by a guy in a canary yellow jumpsuit — the on-call night mechanic. The crowd is somewhat rowdy and fueled with various spirits. It is now time to rent a room at the car-rental shop. Fortunately, there is a designated driver (the HR weenie/brilliant singer) who is lucid enough to get the job done quickly and with no loss of fluids. More stumbling, this time through towers of tires and then up the stairs. As we walk up we can vaguely hear the distant yowl of abused cats fighting a death duel. This turns out to be our neighbors. The stairway ends in what looks kind of like an industrial hotel. The room is a medium sized (cozy for ten) karaoke box. The screen takes up half of one wall and the beer takes up the table. Brain-damage ensues.

OK, maybe it wasn’t an epiphany that hit me, more likely it was a microphone, but still this feels like a new level, perhaps a whole new plane of understanding. I’ve got a transcendent feeling, similar to when I first really got Hello Kitty, but with a smaller welt.

Anyway, if you’ve read this far that probably means you’re having a boring day at the office too.


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