US-Asian casino daddy squabbles, on location in Macau

First there was the suing, alleging, and counter-suing between Las Vegas’ tycoon Steve Wynn and Japanese pachinko billionaire Okada Kazuo. Now Newt Gingrich’s #1 casino patron ($10 million in donations) Shel Adelson is feuding with former Taiwanese partners. Somehow the money all leads to Macau. Lost in the news is what an epic comb-over Shel sports.

Semi-delinquent boys in all nite line at pachinko parlor

semi-delinquent boys lined up all nite at pachinko parlor

Coming home late on a Monday nite, I was startled to see a huge line outside the neighborhood Super Seven pachinko parlor. Pachinko is closed from 11 pm to 10 am, so clearly these boys were prepared to spend the nite in line for some new game or guest appearance. No girls? Nothing else to do on a weeknite-becoming-weekday?

End of year purity

Kadomatsu at Nakano Pachinko parlor

Over the past days, small and large displays of bamboo, pine, basket, konbu and baskets have appeared on residential doors and in front of businesses. It’s called kadomatsu.

They symbolize longevity and the purity with which one prepares to bring in the new year. Some of the most elaborate ones are in front of the pachinko parlors and love hotels. Ours will be humbler.