Finding Nemo

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Go-Go Izakaya!!

Into the Izakaya (no it smells fine)
The best way to describe the Izakaya is that its just a bar, really.  Yes you might be sitting on tatami mats or eating fish chips instead of potato chips, but other than that the setup isn't much different from Sharkeez back home.  Yes the hot towels are nice, and the puke tub in the bathroom is quite considerate.  But the real thing that makes it Izakaya is: ALL YOU CAN DRINK!!!  Or eat.  I guess its usually either one or the other.  But honestly, what sarariman worth his karoshi would pick the latter?

Round 1 of ?
Anyway, I went with my brother's friend Kevin to a local Izakaya in Shinjuku.  We missed the happy hour I guess but drinks were still dirt cheap, a revelation in Tokyo.  As we tucked into our smoked salmon chips, we noticed a parade of big-haired anime guys walking past with their girls.  They looked like the anime girl-catchers outside but were too young.  We realized later it was a graduation party, and they had come to celebrate.  It was a good atmosphere watching the kids bang away at Japanese drinking games, especially when the chorus was all girls chanting at the guys to catch up.

Starring in my own anime comic
We wandered over to see if we could get some pictures.  I lifted up my camera and said as politely as I could "Shashin kudasai?"  They were obliterated, and all stumbled over themselves saying "Hai!!!"  "Dozo gaijin!!!"  I was pulled headfirst into the pile of drunken students, pulling off my shoes in mid-air to avoid stepping on the tatami.  Now, as everyone here knows, the peace sign is required in every photo, and it has to be straight into the camera.  No low-slung casual peace signs allowed in Japan.

I got into the act and pulled a double-peace-sign, even though I'm not sure that's even allowed for a foreigner.  All in all, I have to say that the Izakaya is a good night out.  Just make sure you pass on the Zima.


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