Bottoms up! The kidz are super happy as they lurch toward adulthood.
Well, hello, Ebizu! I thought the kabuki star was disgraced, and then I find him giving me this come-hither look outside the new(ish) palce of posh menswear, Hankyu Men in Yurakucho. Decent coffee downstairs at the Monocle Cafe brought me there twice in one week.
Can someone explain to me how celebrity rehabilitation works in Japan? Was he forgiven because alcohol was involved? Or has he seduced a defenseless nation into taking him back?
One of the only dangers of urban life in Tokyo is being in a crowded train and being barfed on or about. Last week we were riding the rails, and just entered this car when we saw two uniformed rail workers spread out some sawdust and quickly sweep up the puke. Wow! It probably took less than 2 minutes.
Would this happen where you live? In the US, I can’t believe they would take care of it before the train reaches its final stop. With our reduced expectations, we would not be terribly surprised if the puke stayed until the end of the night shift or beyond.
I am frequently disgusted by how alcohol abuse is tolerated, encouraged, and denied. As someone concerned about being puked on or near, I was delighted to see this rapid remediation.
Japan’s ex Finance Minister Shoichi Nakagawa found dead in bed by his wife this morning. He’s the guy who got fired for mixing booze and pain killers before appearing at the G-7 global Finance Minister meeting this spring. He was 56.
From the Wall Street Journal: “considered extremely intelligent but also noted for his temper, [Nakagawa] had served in parliament for 26 years. The seat had previously been held by his father, Ichiro Nakagawa . . . . The senior Mr. Nakagawa died in 1983 in what police said was a suicide.
And the Japan Times reports the presence of vomit, sleeping pills and alcohol. Plus this observation from his wife the night before: “When Nakagawa’s 50-year-old wife came home at around 9 p.m. Saturday, she saw him sleeping half on the floor with his upper body face down on the bed, but she did not sense anything was wrong, they said.”
The holidays remind me how fortunate I am to avoid almost all parties, especially work and family-related. And, until moving to Tokyo, I almost never drank.
Here’s a list of what one New York Times author has overheard at holiday parties. Doesn’t it make you feel safer to be at home in front of the screen?
- “We’re not really budgeted for a vacation this year, what with the exchange rate and my gambling addiction.”
- “I have to apologize for not reading your new book yet. It’s just that the last one was so awful.”
- “That’s a great outfit! It really shows off your breasts.”
- “What I really want is a job where you don’t worry so much about money and prestige. Are there any openings at your place?”
- “So I told human resources flat out, it’s not sexual harassment if I can prove I’m impotent.”
- “Has anyone ever told you that you have the air of a much more successful person?”
- “Sometimes accidental electrocution can be a blessing in disguise, but try telling that to the other mothers in the playgroup.”
- “Did you have some work done? Because, you know, too little too late.”
- “I don’t usually drink this much, but you’re insufferable.”
- “I had pants on when I came in, right?”
- “Aren’t holiday parties great?”
What have you over-heard at holiday parties? I am counting down the hours until the Xmas music is turned off in Tokyo. .