Friday, January 25, 2008


Today, I had my first definite Yakuza sighting. Their girlfriends are a lot easier to identify. They wear almost nothing at all and teeter around on super high-heels, covered in tatoos - they're the only hot girls on the street that the nampa guys don't say a word to. The guys, however, are usually a bit more discrete. Actually, this guy was probably pretty low down in the chain, because he was dressed like a thug.

When I was doing my shopping in an old shoutengai, I saw this tough looking dude in his 40 wearing a track suit and a huge down jacket. Then, I noticed he was missing the ends of two of the fingers on his right hand. The damage was new, because his hand was still bandaged, but it was clear that the fingers had been chopped. I guess I was a bit obvious, because when he saw me looking at his hand, he shoved it into the pocket of his jacket. He was reading the adds for rental places posted outside of one of the ubiquitous rental agencies, and after shooting me a glare he went back to reading.

Imagine trying to rent a place in Japan with two fingers missing.

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