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


We then boarded the bus again, listened to Takeshi-san talk more about how Tokyo is super awesome great, and his family is the bestest family in Japan like ever, and just enjoyed the city scenery as we traveled to our next destination, the Chinzanso Restaurant at the Four Seasons hotel, for our Japanese barbecue (kaiseki) lunch cooked Teppanyaki-style.

Tea lady

The Book of the Rossman is probably about 50,000Xs better and actionier than the Books of John, Luke, Matthew, Mark, and Mormon all rolled up into one. Plus it comes with stickers and porn.


The hotel was super fancy, and even though we were all escorted into the smallest dining hall there was absolutely nothing to complain about. The whole place was classy and ritzy as fuck. My God I felt so completely out of place there.

We sat at a table with a Dutch family (father, mother, 20-something son) who were actually really cool (despite my hatred of the Dutch in general), and a couple other tourists of whom I recall absolutely nothing except one of them kept slapping the other whenever he tried to talk to us. The food was cooked on our table (think a square table with a grill in the center of it, and a quiet and formal barbecuer/chef on one side cooking everything up for us, one course at a time), and the biru (though not included in the price of the tour, but which Mehve and I found very necessary nonetheless) kept flowing like a giant tsunami (what, too soon?). The Dutch family was really funny, and they told us about their earlier tours, previous vacations, and how they actually drank a bar closed two nights ago (meaning the bar ran out of biru and had to close early because of them). I then began to change my mind about an entire culture and peoples because of their unadulterated badassdom.

Dead meat

This was a really good lunch, and I'm not just saying that because I got plastered at the table. She kept serving us meats and veggies until we couldn't eat any more. Well, that's not technically true. When she ran out of meat and I was still hungry she was honor bound to carve up her left leg and grill that sucker up for me. It was a bit gamey, but the dishonor had she not would have tasted far worse.


Dutch meat

The first cool Dutch people I've ever met... And I once spent a year on Curacao one week. For those who don't know, Curacao is the ass-end of the Caribbean that's known basically for being 50% Dutch, and 50% Colombian drug dealer.... Great, now I'm having flashbacks.......


So while Barbecue-san was cooking up our food (lots of good cuts of meats and peppers and vegetables), I began my own Japanesey tradition. Every time I tasted something new, or finished a meal I would tell the chef (we usually ate right in front of the actual chef at most meals) or waiter/waitress "Mmmm, OISHII!" in my deepest baritone voice, typically sounding like Orson Welles' and Toshiro Mifune's unnatural, but hyper-manly love child in the process. They all flippin' LOVED that shit! I actually got the stone-faced Barbecue-san to smile and giggle a little. Granted, they may all have been laughing AT me, and not at my manly declaration of love for their culinary creations, but whatever. That was my thing now.

After lunch we were all allowed to wander the hotel's perfect Japanese gardens (I guess there they're just known as "gardens," but whatever) for about 20 minutes before we had to get moving to the next stop on our tour. So Mehve and I walked all around the huge and amazing park-like area (again, amazingly enough, within the city limits of Tokyo, this small, walled-in natural setting was even more unbelievable), took some super long distance shots of some cute/hot brides as they did their official photoshoots (i.e. the RIGHT way to take pictures of hot brides — far away and without them knowing... Somehow makes it sexier and kinkier), and found a few really cool Shinto shrines around the premises for some great portrait picture ops. Soon though some other tour groupies found us and told us Takeshi-san ordered us to pack it in and move it out. So we hustled back to the bus and waved goodbye to those fabulous gardens.

Growth spurt

Well, even if I knew this was going to happen I still would have eaten the mushroom. And the cake..... And even though the pills weren't really "red" or "blue" per se (more of a "pukey green" and "lumpy vomity purple") I probably still would have gone for them too. Nevermind.


Godzilla versus King Kong

You know, I think I need to watch that movie again.


BrideTakeshi-san counted everybody as we got back onto our transport, but then we just sat there while the engine chugged away in park. Takeshi-san stayed outside and quickly paced back and forth in front of the tour vehicle while constantly looking at his watch and occasionally glancing at the hotel front door (from which we had all come) for about 3 minutes before finally climbing back onto the bus and doing one more fast head count. When he got to the the empty 6 seats that the Indian family had previously taken up he stopped, looked around and asked nobody in particular, "Excuse me, please! Has anyone seen the Patel people in the tour? Does anyone know where they are to be right now? They are not here? The Patel people? Anybody?"

People just stared at him. One fat American lady asked, "Who?"

I then rolled my eyes and said "Who the hell do you think? The PATELS? The only Indian family in the tour?"

Takeshi-san pointed at me and said "Yes! The Indian people? Where are they?" Nobody said a goddamn thing, but I know we were all thinking it: "Do we HAVE TO wait for those jerkoffs?"

Takeshi-san then raced off the bus while staring at his watch and proceeded to talk rapidly with two hotel employees who were hovering nearby, then they broke up and each ran into the hotel lobby, going in different directions once inside... Then we waited...... And waited some more. Finally, after about 20 more goddamn minutes Takeshi-san reemerged from the Four Seasons with the 6 missing Patels in tow (I was so pissed off that none of them was dead or seriously injured), though they were moving at a snail's pace, apparently trying their damndest to imitate Tim Conway's "old man" character, but nobody on the bus was cracking up and laughing their asses off like Harvey Korman. Instead, we all gave the fuckers the evil eye and I flipped them the bird when they looked my way. As soon as they were seated though the bus tore out of the hotel's roundabout like a DeLorean trying to reach 88MPH. Off we went to our next stop: the Imperial Palace!

Takeshi-san did his best to point out the important buildings that we passed as we blew by them (they all looked the same... Seriously, Tokyo has no real defining skyline past Tokyo Tower), and before we knew it we were circling the Imperial Palace — home of the Emperor of Japan and his harem of 98 Japanese teenagers and 2 Swedish women that he keeps in the Hot Chicks Room 24/7. Man, it's good to be the king.


I have almost totally perfected this magic trick now!


Tokyo hobos

BUMS! Tokyo bums! Oh my God! This was so fucking cool! The Imperial Palace Park was totally littered with hobos! How awesome is that?! We were just a couple hundred yards away from the Emperor's living quarters and there are dozens upon dozens of transients just sleeping the day away! I dared Mehve to either buy a bum a coffee from a vending machine or just start kicking the shit out of one of them while I recorded it in high definition on my camera. He took the offer to buy one a drink, but as he got close to the hobo the stank apparently startled him and he ended up throwing the hot beverage at the poor schmuck and beaned him right in the head, killing him. Since the bet wasn't to "kill" a bum (just beat him to unconsciousness), Mehve lost and I got to keep my ¥100.


Well, as soon as we pulled into the bus parking lot of the Imperial Plaza in front of the Palace, Takeshi-san made the announcement that because we were so late and behind schedule (and to his credit he did not look angrily at the Patels who just sat there like smug assholes), we would only be able to stay at the Imperial Palace for 10 minutes before we'd have to leave again to catch the riverboat portion of the tour that followed. Then everybody else except Takeshi-san looked angrily at the smug-ass Patels and grumbled. We were told that it would be best to stay around the big man-on-a-horse statue near the bus, or use the toiret-u if we wanted, but the front gates of the Palace were even too far to get to at this point, unless we were to run. That's when a 20-something American couple (in great shape) squeezed past our guide and hauled ass through the Imperial Park towards the giant gates. The rest of us then filed out and took some lazy shots of the statue, while Takeshi made the Patels stay within 20 feet of the bus... This was awesome as he would step in front of them with his arms crossed in a giant "X" gesture and apologize that he could not let them wander.

Like a baws

"Like a baws!" and "Oh no, Kyru! Cuttrefish-u and asparagus-u was a bad idea! Oh no! Hord on, Kyru! I berieve in you!" became our slogans of this trip. Well, they became MY slogans at least. Damn, I still have to show Mehve that South Park episode where the Japanese man who had Kyle's mouth sewn to his anus eats the cuttlefish instead of the vanilla paste. Oh God it's awful.



How the fuck do they do it? I mean, the bar on the wall is like TOTALLY necessary, yeah, but how can anyone stay comfortable in the squatting position long enough to finish the Sports section of the Athens Banner Herald? Is this just a nationwide joke on gaijin?


Before we knew it we were all back on the transport (even the American running couple, who were barely out of breath... fit bastards), and off to Hinode Pier in Tokyo Bay for a tour of all 50,000 bridges on the Sumida River.

We got to the pier and onto the boat with no problem (and the rain had seemed to let up for the day by this point, so we had that going for us), and then the river tour began. It was interesting and fun to chug up the famous waterway and see all the bridges (Mehve took pictures of every one of them because I think he's a bit OCD), but it wasn't until we were 3/4ths done with the river trip that I noticed something in the distance behind us... Something silver and sleek and really sweet-looking, coming up fast!... Well, maybe not fast exactly, but speedier than our large craft... As I stared, and then eventually used my camera's hyper-zoom, I found that we were being trailed by a SUPER boat! Some sort of craft straight out of a James Bond movie was making great time on our tail! And it was so coooooool!

head banger's boat

Low ceilings everywhere. My first piece of advice for anyone over 5'8" who's planning to go to Japan: wear a helmet.


Meta bridge

Here I am taking a picture of Mehve taking a picture of the 11th bridge we passed under. It was either this or I make a collage of all 50 bridges and we all die of boredom. Thank you for understanding.

Unfortunately we reached our destination at Asakusa before I could get a good shot of the Super Boat up close and personal, but as I stepped off our barge I looked across the river and saw three new spectacular sites: the almost complete Tokyo Sky Tree; the Asahi Beer Building (which with its golden-tinted windows and over-extended white upper floors looked like a gigantic frothy pint of gorgeous, delicious, decultured Asahi!); and the Poo Building, with the giant golden poo on top of it. Japan, you are soooooo fucking weird.

Okay, so we exited our tour barge and Takeshi-san raised his tour guide flag and asked us to follow him to our next stop: the Asakusa Kannon Temple (aka Senso-ji), the oldest (and most kick ass) Buddhist Temple in all of Tokyo. As we marched away though, I turned around just before I lost site of the river completely and I got to see the Supah Boat up close and personal. My God, it was magnificent! I so wanted to see James Bond or Jackie Chan running on top of it using judo or kung-fu on bad guys that suddenly and maliciously appeared and tried to kill them like the assholes that they were. But alas, if I didn't stop daydreaming and hurry after our guide I'd be Kirk Cameroned (i.e. "Left Behind"). So off I went, just hoping I'd see the Supah Boat again.

Tokyo Sky Tree, Asahi Building, Poo Building, and Supha Boat

If this doesn't get me a Pulitzer, well, I don't know what will.


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