Tokyo Blog, Tokyo Story

The blog of Stephen David Smith, Tokyo, Japan 2014

Now Viewing: All Posts for tag "people"

The Journey

This is another musical interlude. No footage to speak of here, just Aphex Twin’s sublime remix of The Gentle People’s track ‘The Journey’. This track can be found on the 26 Mixes for Cash compilation by Aphex Twin on WARP.


Tokyo People Volume 2: Counter Sleeper

Counter Sleeper

People don’t tend to bother each other in Tokyo, so it’s possible for people to nod off virtually anywhere without any risk of being woken up, robbed or graffiti’d on. This is why this man exists, counter sleeper. You can go into pretty much any fast food restaurant in Tokyo after the last trains have left the stations and find some middle-aged guy sleeping in his miso soup. From what I can tell, people’s routines are a lot less routine than in other parts of the world. Although punctuality and working schedules are regarded as sacred here, people don’t necessarily sleep in their apartment for 7 hours every night. It’s possible to use Tokyo as your extended living space, and sleep, eat and bathe in public places. And you can certainly eat and drink there, so why go home at all? When this guy wakes up he’ll probably go to the convenience store and pick up a new set of underwear and a fresh shirt then hit up the office.

Intelligence: 5
Stamina: 4
Speed: 2
Resistance to Alcohol: 3
Sleeping Ability: 8
Combat Skill: 2
Voice Volume: 5
Magic Points: 1
Gold: 6


Tokyo People Volume 1: Shop Shouters

This is the first in a series of ‘programmes’ on Tokyo Story that will feature at irregular intervals from now on. The series will explore the many different types of people who live in the city. This, in addition to the series also recently started on Japanese Beer!

Tokyo People Volume 1: Shop Shouters

So, the first character I’ll introduce is a guy (or girl) who advertises their shop by standing outside and shouting about it. I’ve decided to call this person a Shop Shouter. Their shifts can last a long time, but they continue to yell at the passing public in the hope of drawing attention to a special offer, or campaign as the Japanese call it – or just to the shop in general, and it works. After checking out this guy, I clocked a pair of newly released Nike Terminator hi-tops and had to take a closer inspection! I’ve seen Shop Shouters in almost every major shopping district in Tokyo. The shouters of Harajuku are particularly noteworthy as they tend to wear traditional Japanese Happi (I guess you’d call it a smock, or like a loose jacket of thin material) with vibrant designs. These guys are professionals. Sometimes they have megaphones, sometimes not, but they compete to outdo each other, welcoming customers before they’ve even entered the shop with drawn-out screams of irasshaimase (welcome). Sometimes, if it’s late in the day, their voices are completely worn out and it’s painful to hear them trying to continue on shouting. If you look, the guys in this picture are balancing on stepladders with impressive stability.

Intelligence: 4
Stamina: 7
Speed: 5
Resistance to Alcohol: 4
Sleeping Ability: 4
Combat Skill: 3
Voice Volume: 8
Magic Points: 2
Gold: 2