Coco de Mer Geisha Gag, $165
My back’s flat against a black sheet of stage that’s speared with a pole, and warm air over my bare legs is like a comforter. A couple of two-dollar bills melt into one between my teeth, pillowed by my wet tongue. Lured by that make-out Monopoly money, a topless Japanese girl slithers over me, her skin powdering my nose, her head nuzzling my thighs, pausing. Then her hands massage my breasts as she crawls back, kissing me, biting the fake money into her mouth. She pecks me on the cheek, chirping, “Arigatou!”
“No,” I giggle. “Thank you.�”As vulgar as the world might make watching naked, thin girls strip to buy clothes and food, Japan styles the experience as gracious, as graceful, as losing your virginity on your wedding night.
Only maybe more mildly mannered.
I sit back down at my table, with a hostess. Her eyes are wide, their slant exaggerated with false eyelashes and lips constantly curved up. “She good dancer, yes?” She echoes my declaration from a few minutes before.
I smile. “Hai!” I say, with a short nod. The only Japanese I�ve spoken my two days in Tokyo is “Star-uh-bucks-oh,” “Yes,” and “Thank you.” Excepting my Engrish chant while hunting for soy lattes, this seems to be the most Japanese spoken by the natives, too. With such soft language, what little I’ve seen of the megacity makes it feel feminine, despite city myths of men groping women in crowded elevators, in spite of the aisle of rape porn I stumbled onto in a six-story sex shop.
Tokyo is just too polite to feel fully dirty and urban.
Though the metropolis is dense with thin buildings nodding to the sky, heavy skyscrapers bending under the clouds, and a tower that flatters the Eiffel with its likeness, it’s urbane about its urbanity, completely clean, only littered with bowing trees offering to shade your stroll on the sidewalk.
It’s partly this prettiness that makes exploring Tokyo vibe like virtual reality: everything is blinking and bright and light and seemingly safe, so consequence-free. So I wondered through alleys, sky walks, and sidewalks, finally entering Kabukich, a district that was hardly lit in the red it’s famed for: instead it was flashing yellows and greens and blues, and the whites of Japanese men’s eyes, against the gray of their European business suits.