Requested by Jen

OBSERVATIONS ABOUT JAPAN

I went to Japan for the first time a few weeks ago.
  1. The erotic status of detail
    This is something I've always vaguely been attracted to but never seen condensed into a way of life. Japan is the first place I've been that gets that in an exact, complete, dedicated, beautiful way. I would move there just for this.
  2. Restaurant and bar fronts are mysteriously inscrutable and most things happen underground at B1
    At first I found this stressful because I like to assess a place before I go in and panic about being the only person in a restaurant, but that's exactly why everyone in Japan is so much cooler than me. Kyoto was an especially romantic example of this with its closed wooden fronts hiding glints of light and trouble.
  3. Vending machines
    At first 7 vending machines of drinks per block seems excessive, but within a day I was annoyed if I had to walk more than a block to find the right milk tea.
  4. School girl outfits are no joke
    1/3 of people on the street are schoolgirls or adults dressed as schoolgirls. I'd figured this was a western caricature but it's not and it's awesome.
  5. Face masks are no joke
    1/3 of people (not mutually exclusive with schoolgirls) are wearing facemasks. I found this weirdly hot, in like a burka hot way.
  6. 711s
    I went to a 711 at least twice a day. Why are they so much better there?
  7. Book covers
    Everyone hides the books they're reading in paper covers. What are you reading that's so scandalous! I always tried to peek.
  8. Socks
    Mad sock game all round. I got swept up in it and wore frilly socks with sandals one night and felt 💯.
  9. Non standardized signs
    The signs are so, so good. They're hilarious, but they're also non standardized so every town or street has to make up their own sign for, eg, Don't Pluck the Fish Out of This Water. This brought me much joy.