Note: I’m writing this at the end of this week, since it was only scratch notes and needed to be cleaned up. I have been… busy in Japan. April 18 10am Japanese Breakfast on the mind. The menu is in Japanese but thankfully every place has picture menus. “kore” (“this”) “kudosai” (“please! (for requesting objects)”) gets us pretty far until they hand us an English menu, annoyed. We suspect the good stuff is left off of these menus but that has never been true. Had some natto which is fermented soy beans- I read about this a lot before I came to Japan. It’s subtle tasting and the texture is sticky. This should not be where your comfort zone ends.
Shinpachi Shokudo Seibu Shinjuku branch. This was as good as it looks- means exactly what you take from that. (10/10). Try the natto and pickled veggies (not pictured).
https://maps.app.goo.gl/WkMBCadWDhfe3ekb8?g_st=ic We have to work so we start the 15 minute walk back home. Adrien starts getting inundated with emails so he runs ahead. Dylan and I are looking for any possible distraction on the way back and boy did we find some.
Outside of Toho cinemas. I wish there was more Godzilla related stuff but he’s the exact type of pop icon in Japan as he is in the states, kind of shallow at this point.
We saw a brightly lit door and heard lots of noise coming through it so we assumed it would be an arcade detour, but instead we ended up walking through a massive pachinko parlor built into the bottom of Toho cinema. These are slot machines in everything but name and they are incredibly normalized around Tokyo. People were on their phones playing games while feeding money into the machines which were built for sensory overload. These felt exactly like casinos, predatory and gross. We decided not to play. Notably, all the machines are themed on popular anime or pop culture things, with some surprisingly deep cuts and high quality theming. These are not cash in/ cash out but they have prizes in store or you go to different buildings to have your credits bought from you for cash. They had a collab machine between my favorite Anime Neon Genesis Evangelion and Godzilla. That really got me sweaty but I still resisted. I might write about NGE and how it seems to be everywhere yet nowhere here in a later post. (Funny enough this ended up being next door to the new Shinjuku Kabuchiko tower which was the single best arcade experience we had in Tokyo. We found it the next day.)
NGE vs Godzilla felt like it was targeted at me.

Working time from 11-5 until dinner reservations in Ginza.
We needed some snacks, so Dylan and I headed to 7-11 while Adrien kept working. In the 7-11 there was a One Piece Ichiban Kuji This is a “guaranteed win lottery”. The prize pool is displayed on the 7-11 shelves, and you can buy a 700yen ticket which has a category A-I on it. The better the letter the better the prize. If you wanted a specific prize you could basically buy the entire lot to get it. Note: Adriens favorite character is the guy with the pink scars, and we only won the other two. This is how they get you. They eventually did.
The prize pool.
For $20 I happened to win some prizes with insane odds. I decided I should stop there. Did I? Not at all.
Japanese consumerism is pretty crazy. This was basically like buying a scratch card in the states though. If we brought Ichiban Kujis to the states there would be riots and armed guards to protect these figurines. Pretty fun and cool but still normalized gambling in both cases. We stopped by a Don Quixote for the first time on the way back. It’s like a fever dream wal-mart. This deserves its own section eventually but here’s a preview.
Soon.
Ginza is cool. Didn’t have my camera on me today so most shots are phone shots.
Theater in Ginza worth checking out
Dinner was at Sushi Ginza Onodera - Souhonten. Absolutely worth checking out at least one of the Onadera group restaurants while you’re in Tokyo. They are all omakase and like $200ish. Very bougie, foreigner friendly and satisfied that “dinner at a counter in Japan” craving you will have when you get here. https://maps.app.goo.gl/q71aRTgRPVbnJ7Lf9?g_st=ic
they let you choose your sake cup. Guess who chose which 😛.
Not going to talk about food cuz that’s trite but my favorite part was the tofu in the beginning. It was nutty and delicious. There was a dover sole that I ate to fast I forgot to take a picture. Rock solid meal.
After dinner we strolled through Ginza.
Had to check out the Ginza hooters. It’s cool. Japanese Americana continues to be some of the coolest shit to do in Japan.
We stopped at a very quiet whiskey bar where this Irish guy was meeting with some SoftBank guy and they were both absolutely hammered. His meeting ended and after like 20 goodbyes he was alone with us. From that point he chatted us up and just started straight up lying about who he was. He keeps gesturing at Adrien “this guy needs to say something”. When we finally left Adrien told us “guys I have to be honest his accent made it impossible to understand a word that guy was saying”. We laughed. We took the subway back to Shinjuku and saw all of this on the way home. :)
This would’ve been a cuter scene if it wasn’t in the red light district. sus.