OPERATION: DOWNFALL (The Invasion of Japan for Otaku Purposes [aka ODTIJOP])


The museum also had a few rooms set up like Miyazaki's personal art studio, with books on aviation, fairy tales, and history strewn everywhere, and drawings and painting with early sketches of all his projects nailed to every wall. There was even a life-sized Cat Bus, a small movie theater with an original 8-minute flick about some strange grade schoolers who imagine they built a boat in their classroom, a Mama Aiuto's Gift Shop (where I spent way too much moneys), a rooftop garden, and even people in costumes walking around and greeting patrons while they imitated Porco Rosso, Arrietty, Kiki, Ponyo, Sheeta, and the EVA-Unit01, which was stomping around, and its eyes lit up, and it bellowed that ungodly rage-filled roar!.... Waitaminute... Maybe that last part was just another life-like hallucination. I had been snorting some of the large Totoro's dust bunnies just a little while previous. Whatever, good times nonetheless!


Here's the Ghibli-go-round in the museum (at rest... You'd never appreciate a photo of the thing while it was moving with the strobe on it, genius). Even looking at it like this though, it's still beautiful... Some day I will break in and steal it. This I command! And no, I didn't take this shot of it (though I SHOULD have grown a pair and done it myself).





I found Sheeta's pendant, and I kind of got a little carried away with the Laputa's self defense cube gizmo and its tactical nuclear striking capabilities. You know that 7.2 earthquake that hit Turkey in the middle of October of 2011?... Yeah, that was me. This Laputa cube has a massive kick! I swear, I was just trying to annihilate my ex Lisa's house, car, dog, and child... I didn't know I'd cause a chain reaction that'd take out 24 million innocent Turks! I'm so sorry! I don't know how I'll ever live with... Wait, what? Only 600 people died?..... That's not so bad.


So after having free reign of the place all afternoon, and seeing and doing everything two to three times (including drawing Howl sticking his giant cock up Ponyo's fishy ass while Jiji popped his little cat head out of Howl's own anus on the bathroom wall with a Sharpie), we were tracked down by our tour guide and told it was time to go. We were sad, but at least that Laputa Guardian Robot stopped following me around at the front gate.

We got back onto the Ghibli city bus a little after 5, took a nice (but packed) train ride back to Shinagawa Station, and after we left the group Mehve and I decided to pick up our pre-bought Kyoto bullet train tickets from the Shinagawa JRail office that was still open at that time (that time being around 6:30... It was a loooong train ride. Lots of stops). We sat in the queue for about 20 minutes of pure aggravation, but then when we were eventually called up to the counter things just got worse.


I don't think this really captures it, but this Ghibli Museum was really beautiful. And the Totoro-burgers they served in the cafeteria were delish! No, they weren't shaped like Totoros, they were MADE from Totoros.... Mmmmmm, ground Totoro flesh...



The gates that guarded Ghibli.



So here am I, Mehve, Mr. Brit, Mrs. Brit, and the two Los Angeleans in the Ghibli Museum Courtyard. We were a pretty bad ass group if I must say so myself!..... No, no we weren't... But at least we were the tallest fuckers in the place by far.


See, first Mehve went up to the JRail customer counter alone, and the ticketing agent started rambling off her schpiel in rapid Japanese expecting him to be just another native looking for a quick train ticket resolution. After she stopped and looked up at him and his very confused and tired and semi-annoyed face my friend said in slow English, "I do not speak Japanese... Do you have somebody who can speak English? Onegaishimasu? Engrish? Anyone?" She seemed to get the clue and bolted to get her manager (well, after a five minute petrified panic where she couldn't decide just what needed to be done). Well, the manager came, but he didn't believe his underling that this normal-looking, OBVIOUSLY Japanese citizen could not speak a word of Japanese, so he bowed to Mehve and then started into his own long winded salutation that went on for at least 30 seconds before he stopped for air. That's when he realized Mehve was just looking at him with his own take on my patented "Gaijin Stare," and he apologized (many "Sumimasen"s), and ran away himself, leaving the original agent there looking even more embarrassed and confused than she was before.

Detective Conan!That's when I came over to grab the empty seat next to Mehve (I'd been on my feet since 8:30 that morning and was tiiiiiiiiiired). That seemed to only freak out the ticketing agent to her limit, and with wide eyes she fled her station. Soon a new girl appeared and the battle of broken English between her and Mehve began in earnest. It took another 40 goddamn minutes to get our tickets. In the end neither Mehve nor I could figure out what the big fucking deal was, and why everybody was so confused (we had all our paperwork and identification in order, and we were just picking up prepaid fucking tickets!). Though I think I may have complicated matters when (after staring at a large poster on the wall advertising a Detective Conan train ride [from and to where I have no friggin' clue] for 10 minutes straight without blinking) I began laughing my gaijin ass off, and I actually fell out of my uncomfortable chair and to my knees. Mehve had no idea what I was going on about, and all I could do was point to the Detective Conan poster (where the childlike character smirked like a knowing douchebag at the viewer) and guffaw out "Ha ha ha ha! Gya ha ha! A Detective Conan train ride? Bwa ha ha ha! What, do they murder you in unspeakable, but ingenious ways before your destination? Ahhhh ha ha ha haaa!" I was overtired.

Anyway, so they FINALLY got us our tickets, failed to apologize for our HOUR wait for them to stop being morons, and then we departed looking for a bite to eat. Well, it started raining while we were waiting for Hell to freeze over, or out tickets to get delivered, and we found that there wasn't much restaurant choice on the Prince Hotel side of the Shinagawa Station. We were both tired and starving, so we just agreed to go to the closest place that looked like it served real food and alcohol (beyond the ramen shops under the train tracks).

We saw the sign for the Yabu-Kuni beer garden and made a bee-line for it, getting soaked in the process. This filled us with dread since after watching anime for years and years we knew that we were just signed a death sentence... Let me reiterate: WE WERE CAUGHT OUTSIDE IN THE RAIN WITHOUT AN UMBRELLA IN JAPAN. We just knew we'd start sneezing within minutes and be in a hospital before midnight... But before that, beer.

The Yabu-Kuni was a Kirin-sponsored bar/restaurant, and we were fine with that (Kirin's coo'!). What we weren't coo' with though was the fact that they took our hot 20-something waitress away from us when they realized Mehve couldn't speak Japanese, and gave us a crotchety, old, chain-smoking (she puffed while she served us) batty old broad from the dishwashing part of the kitchen who spoke maybe 9 words in English... Must have been 9 more than our original cute girl. Whatever. By this point we didn't give a shit; we just wanted biru, food, and to be introduced to Jerry Springer, who sat behind me to the right.... We got two out of those three, but I was too embarrassed to admit to Jerry that I knew who he was, so I just let that one go.


It really wasn't that good looking a meal, but it sufficed. And if you couldn't tell Mehve and I took pictures of pretty much EVERYTHING we ate this trip. Enjoy!


Jerry! Jerry!

Just like here's me eating "milk-u pudding-u" in front of Jerry Springer. He was ignoring us like we were ignoring him.


The food there was alright, but nothing spectacular. But the biru (although it had the 1/4th head too) was FABulous. We kept the drinks coming until our ancient dishwasher/waitress came out from the back and told us they were cutting us off because our singing was annoying the other customers. I tried to tell her that if they knew the lyrics to Sabbath's "Iron Man" they could join in too, but she just shooed us out after we paid the bill. I looked at the check Mehve was paying and realized that if we truly planned to get shit-faced every night in Tokyo it was going to get veeeery expensive veeeeeeeeery quickly. But I put that out of my head to keep my happy buzz going.

After that we ran back through the terrible, terrible rain to the Prince Hotel, where I stopped by the 7/11 again and got some new Pocky flavors for my breakfast. After an hour or so of incomprehensible television we turned in for the night (well, we did after we ordered another 2 pillows each from the front desk). It was 10:30. It was a good day.

Ghibli film bits

Oh yeah! And with each ticket into the Ghibli Museum a guest got an actual few frames from a real life honest to God Ghibli movie! Mine is on the left and it's Igotnofuckingcluewhat, and Mehve's is on the right, and it appears to be three frames from Howl's Moving Castle. Groovy!


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