A blonde walks into a bar...
It sounds like the beginning of a horrible punny joke, right? Right. Yes, the time has come for me to tell you about my amazing experience while meandering through random places around my train station in Japan. There are a few things you should know about me (if you don't know me that well or just happened across this blog):
- I am random.
- My randomness is only superseded by my willingness to try new things.
- My willingness to try new things is only superseded by my height.
- Japanese business men love me.
- I end up in crazy situations on a regular basis.
Two Fridays ago I was bored at home... as is typical before a great "OMG Megs seriously, I can't believe that happened to you" story. I decided to go for a little bike ride. (And by 'little bike ride' I do mean little. My bike is not the appropriate size for a 6'2" person. *le sigh* story of my life here in Japan.) I hopped onto the bike o' destiny and took off towards the glorious setting sun (i.e. the area with all the bars). By the time I got to the train station area, I was drenched in sweat. It was that hot outside. So you can just imagine how sexy I looked. Still in work clothes, sweating like a hooker in church, and makeup running... I had to beat the men off with a stick. Why couldn't I have been born rich instead of good looking???
Parked my bike in the little bike holder doowhomper and headed into the tallest building by my station (100Y for 3 hours isn't bad in Japan considering it's better to do that then have them tow your bike- And yes, they tow bikes). I'd never been in this building before but it looked promising with its colorful signs and pachinko parlor on the bottom floor. I told myself I'd stop at the first bar that would let me in. 1st floor... closed. 2nd floor... closed. 3rd floor... possible nudie club- pass. 4th floor- WIN!
I walked to the open door and immediately people started screaming at me, so obviously I started to run away (those Japanese are feisty, the last thing I need is to get smacked down by a Gaijin-hating ninja). One of the ladies came out and stopped me by saying "First beer free!" Well, if you didn't know by now, two of my favorite words are "beer" and "free" and when they are combined, it's like the heavens opened and the angels were singing. Walked back in the bar with Sue (real name is way too long to spell) and met Kiu, they were the bar owners, both women from China. Basically the only Eigo (English) they knew was "First beer free!" There was a Japanese man at the bar next to where I sat down and he did a bit of translating for everyone. Then we got out our handy-dandy iPhones and Droids and used the translator apps to continue longer convos. It was great. The bartenders loved having me there, it made for great conversation for them and I think I'm now their token American friend.
Note: Google translate is not always accurate. Be warned!
More people came in for their after-work beverages and social time. I was introduced to everyone. I had tons of snacks and Sue and Kiu were absolutely spoiling me rotten. One gentleman came in and introduced himself as (I kid you not) Crazy Uncle Tom. But it was more like "Kazy Awncur Tomb." My translating buddy told me that the guy was a typical patron of the fine establishment and always did crazy stuff. I didn't think an 80 year old man could be too crazy, but I quit trying to guess what will happen in Japan months ago. (Japan's slogan should be "Welcome to Japan. We do crazy shit here!") And when this older guy shows up, his crazy rubs off on everyone else. I'll give you a quick synopsis of the next two hours' events:
- Was proposed to- TWICE! (That makes my 4th proposal from Japanese men since I've moved to Japan)
- Was asked to "Teach them how to Dougie"- I guess they don't understand that I'm extremely white.
- Arm wrestled- and lost.
- Stood up to be measured next to every person that came into the bar.
- Took pics with everyone (Sue still has to email me the pics)
- Had the bar owners stand on chairs next to me so they could be my height.
- Got free sushi, snacks, and tofu... and my free beer.
- Laughed constantly.
But the best part was when "Uncle Tom" said something to Sue in Japanese and she turned on the karaoke machine. Up until that point I didn't even know it was a karaoke bar. (But seriously, what bar isn't a karaoke bar in Japan?) At that point, Uncle Tom said "Hit it!" (Yes, just like in the movies) and Sue turned down the lights and turned on the disco ball. I was already laughing so hard I though I was going to pee my pants. The he started singing:
"There she is, Miss America. There she is, your ideal.
The dream of a million girls who are more than pretty
The dream of a million girls who are more than pretty
can come true in Atlantic City."
LOL I don't even know all the words but he sang it in such amazing Engrish that I started crying laughing. Best song choice ever!!!!!! By the end of the song he was on one knee in front of my chair holding my hand & grinning like crazy (did I mention he was missing about half of his teeth?). I had no earthly idea what to do so I applauded & got him a drink. I guess that probably means we're married now. Ajax might not be too happy about that.
I think he was trying to tell me that I was a good-lookin' tall girl.
But I can't be sure.
After another 30 minutes of fun singing and partially understood conversations, I headed out to go home and crawl in bed. We took a group photo and then they watched me leave and waved out the window as I rode away. Which was very sweet but it sucked because I ended up running into a telephone pole... they surely saw the whole thing.
So that, wondermous blog readers, is the story of my random excursion. And yes, I will be going back again soon.