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A night on the town                         Jan. 26, 2001


     So, what exactly do I do for fun around here?  We all know the Japanese are party animals under that polite surface, but the nightlife here isn't exactly raging.  It seems there aren't too many dance clubs in Sendai, at least that I've seen.  If its possible to have less 'soul' than the average middle class white male, the average Japanese person has found out how.  I'd say they'd probably rank right above people with religious bans on dancing.  Though there are quite a few who are coordinated enough to manage the group choreographed 'new kids on the block circa 1989' dance moves.  But its hard to shake your bum when you don't have one.

     But I digress, I had intended on telling you about my night on the town on Friday.  It was a fairly ordinary occasion, I maybe go out once or twice a month to Sendai.  There were a few more interesting moments that I will get to later.   Firstly, besides myself, there was David, Nicole, Monika* and Kevin.  There were three of David's English teachers plus Kisara and Hajime.   The party was partly a late New Year's plus a celebration for David's arm getting better after he fell off his bike and broke it. Well, fractured really, but that is a whole other amusing story.  

    The first place we went to was a karaoke bar, Neverland.  We partook of some nomihoodai and tabehoodai.  Nomi and tabe hoodai are perhaps one of the greatest things to come from Japan.  For about two and a half hours, you get a set menu of food, plus all you can drink for 3500yen.  Drinks are always 500 each, so that leaves two hours for 5 drinks at least.   Neverland is pretty small, so our group got shuffled into an enclosed room with a karaoke machine.  There were apparently civilized people in the open room.   No one ever has the guts to sing until they've got quite a few drinks in them, so there was some awkward silence for a few minutes.  I perused the drink menu with Kayoco*, even though every bar has the same drinks and I always order the same thing.  Which would be a peach fizz.  But this time I decided to be adventurous and get a banana fizz.  I later got even more daring by ordering a banana milk and a violet fizz, which tastes like a purple Tums.   We finally broke out the microphones, I think Kisara went first.  He spent quite a bit of time convincing me to sing first, he threatened not to let me go home (to America) until I sang.  So that meant I had another six months to stall.  I finally relented and offered to do Cecilia a particular fav of mine, but the blasted book didn't have it.  And do you know that none of them have Gloria Gayner either? truly a travesty.  So then he roped me into singing Like a Virgin with Monika*, but I forgot I didn't know the words.  HE seemed to know the words quite well, for all his claims to the contrary.  Hmmmm......  I think some other people sang some too.  Then I was again tricked into singing with Monika, this time the Titanic song by Celine.... I was ashamed to discover I did know the words.  Monika sang quite well, but I think, I sang it better.  Because, I am the greatest singer in ze world!  

     We were promptly kicked out when our two hours was up.  So then it was time to move onto the second stop.  We actually went to restaurant, I guess we were still hungry.  They gave us free wine.mmm.  After the fact, I think it was a little dangerous taking such a group to a quiet, well lit restaurant, but they did have great food.   But, really, I think it was more dangerous that me and Monika sat next to the two English teachers.  It started innocently enough.  In fact, it was Kayoco who started it.  Or maybe Monika.  I am innocent. Really.  Kayoco mentioned her trip to Italy.  This led to the mention of Italian men.  So Monika mentioned that she'd dated one and that he was an asshole.  We were then curious to know how to say asshole in Japanese, though it doesn't really translate well, so it required some gestures to get the meaning across.  Monika also mentioned that she was learning some dirty Japanese.  This preluded her description of various incidents where Japanese people had grabbed certain parts on certain other English teachers.  This led to a diversion to discussing 'small' attributes, but then they asked us what colloquial words we used for the nether regions.  (So, it appears not to be mine nor Monika's fault, but Kayoco and Hayashis'*)  Running off that list took quite a few minutes.  Hayashi* proclaimed that he discovered she was sleazy. Several times in fact.  I applauded his vocab.  We briefly tried to steer the conversation to a new topic, proclaiming our purity and virgin ears. (kayoco too.)  But then he made the mistake of asking what you say in English for a woman who pretends to be innocent but is really knowledgeable about sex.  That would be 'a Woman' I responded.  Kayoco and Monica agreed.  Well, to make a long story longer, our conversation continued to degenerate.  The high point for me was when she taught Hayashi how to say 'Come satisfy my rampaging manhood'.  He was very delighted to learn this.  And yes, he did indeed understand what it meant.  So we did some pronunciation practice and Monika wrote it down so he wouldn't forget.  He asked David if he had Rampaging Manhood.  Kayoco was feeling left out though, so we taught her 'give me your love shaft O baby O baby'.  This was just shortly before Monika wrote down 'I wanna *uck you like an animal', and 'you got the peaches I got the cream, sweet to taste saccharine'.  I had to explain those ones.  This involved more gesturing.  I'll have to end the retelling there, but that was certainly the worst of it.  We lamented the fact that Hayashi knew no other fluent English speakers to whom he could say 'rampaging manhood'.

     The rest of the evening was fairly uneventful, me and Monika and Nicole went to the local foreign bar/discotheque, where Nicole got hit on by some 50 year old married Japanese men.  We danced some, when they finally played some decent music, but we sat thru the following lineup of psuedo-techno dance remixes: The greatest love of all, I will always love you, The dancing queen and The heart will go on.  It was somewhat disturbing.  On the walk to get a taxi we were detained by a group of men wanting to follow us home.  We had to bust some heads, but it went fairly smooth.  We took a taxi and got home around 2:00 am.  I always get home around 2:00 am.  And this is always after we've decided to take the last train home at 11:55.  But then I would have missed the dance remix of Whitney Houston and Celine Dion.


*some names have been changed for privacy, or because I forgot them.



  Hey! What time is it in Japan?

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