Japanese

Gaijin Tomodachi Tachiyorimasu (Laura & Troy’s SA Reprieve)

P1040818Recently, a good friend of mine returned to South Africa for a brief 13 day reprieve. Laura, along with her fiancé Troy, have spent the last two years abroad in Japan teaching English to the natives. Although they have both been enjoying the unique experience, they, like Dorothy, could not wait to tap their heels because, no matter how short the stay, “there is no place like home”.

If you are wondering about the title of this post, it is supposed to translate into something like: “Internationalised Foreign Friends”. For all I know it could mean “Tasty Octopus Nipples”, what with the dubious reliability of some of the Internet’s ‘translation engines’.

My poor Japanese skills aside, it was great to be able to spend time with both Laura and Troy. Thankfully we got to see them a few times before returning to Japan.

The most memorable evening took place on Saturday night, 8th August 2009. Upon my recommendation, myself, Mik, Nicholas, Laura and Troy, made our way to the Nelson Mandela square in Sandton City. Those of you who know me personally, can attest to the fact that I always like to try new and exciting places or events. As a result, I managed to persuade almost everyone to try Lekgotla), an African styled restaurant, with the hopes of getting to eat a gastronomically unique dish. We were not disappointed.

P1040800Lekgotla is Tswana for ‘the meeting place’, and what a meeting place it is. The place is beautiful. There are no two ways about it. Think traditional African symbolism meets modern European contemporary art. The perfect place to bring foreigners for a taste of African culture.

Thankfully we arrived before the dinner time rush and were thus able to procure and be seated at one of the restaurant’s exclusive ‘gotla’ – one of only two hut-like structures that are able to seat eight people comfortably.

To be frank, the food was simply spectacular! All the way from the Crocodile Carpaccio, Peanut Butter Calamari and Vetkoek starters, to the Ethiopian Coffee Steak, Glazed Pear infused Ostrich fillet and vegetarian platter main courses, and finally all the way to the stomach distending three Crème brûlées degustation dessert; not a single dish was a disappointment. Honestly, a part from being absolutely divine, the food also served as a form of entertainment value for the evening. Discussing the strange delicacies and varied tastes made way for interesting conversational elements and, in some cases, the food prompted ‘hands on’ action as well as the often unexpected, and rather loud, oral expulsion of digestive gases. It was definitely an evening to remember!

Furthermore, throughout the course of the evening, we were constantly impressed by the level of service, but even more so by the welcomed yet unexpected amenities. To begin, we were all offered a cleansing vanilla infused hand wash, with vanilla scented towels to boot. Our hands smelled delicious, unfortunately they did not taste that way. After that a cart was brought over with an opportunity to try out a traditional ‘cocktail’. After come impressive bottle work, we were handed the crushed ice, vodka, honey and lemon juice cocktails. Although the drink sounds like something which could clear ones sinuses, it was actually rather good. A short time later, after the starters, we were given the chance to bare tribal markings upon our beautiful visages. Unfortunately, no one was keen to have their face painted, no matter how ‘unique’ the experience on offer was. Next time though! To top it all off, we were eventually asked if we would have liked our shoes shined. Once again, no one obliged. Although this time it was not for lack of trying, but merely because no one was wearing shoes which could have been shined. To conclude, the service at Lekgotla was excellent. From the moment we arrived we were greeted warmly and made to feel as if we were the only people there. Granted we were at the time, but the level of service did not decline even though the place eventually filled up faster than a rush hour taxi.

As a result, Lekgotla is the perfect place to take foreigners and it is the ideal location for individuals who are willing to embrace their ‘African’ roots. We would give Lekgotla a rating of 9/10.

In essence it was really very good to spend time with everyone, especially Laura and Troy. They have both grown tremendously as a couple and we are all looking forward to their big day – possibly in 2010. We miss them both quite a lot, but we are immensely thankful for the time we were able to have together. The venue just made the experience that much better. After all, nothing is better than creating highly memorable moments, with unforgettably awesome people.

Until the next time “Milieunairs”!

Bookmark and Share

Wishroom keeps your moobs in check!

Jack Nicholson with his 'moobs' on display.Moob (n):

The word given to describe large fatty male pectorals, which resemble female breasts. Thus: Man + Boob = Moob.

Do you have moobs? Are your moobs saggy? Do you feel like your moobs are keeping you down?

If you answered yes to any of the above questions then you are in luck! The Japanese company Wishroom has heard your lethargic call and has developed a solution:

Brassiers for men!

That is correct gents! Wishroom has created bras for men. The strangest part? The bras are selling out faster than Brangelina can adopt children.

Men's Premium Brasserie - Various ColoursMail order company Wishroom started selling the unusual underwear last year [2008].

Unsure of its reception, at first they only produced 160 bras at the start. These sold out immediately, prompting the company to order 5 000 more.

Wishroom president Masayuki Tsuchiya says demand from customers prompted the company to create the male bra.

Men's Premium Brasserie - Leopard PrintIn Japan, men who wear bras are known as “Bra-o”, which means “Bra men”.

Wishroom’s bras are available in a choice of white, pink and black and retail for around £20 [about R260]. They are all A cup size with chest size ranging from 32ins to 38ins.

According to Mr Tsuchiya, office workers in their 30s and 40s are Wishroom’s main clients.

Men's Premium Brasserie - Floral“Japanese salary men have a lot of stress, and the bras seem to relieve that,” he said.

Another, more surprising, market has proven to be in their 50s and 60s who, it turns out, also partial to the calming effects of a bra.

“They were the generation we had been told were manly – they led Japan in the post-war period,” explains Tsuchiya, speculating they may now be reacting against this stereotype (ananova.com).

Okay, how is a bra supposed to relieve stress? The damn things are near impossible to take off, especially in the heat of the moment. Unlike shirts, bras cannot simply be ripped off. If anything, bras are a cause of stress for men, especially during foreplay.

Apart from taking bra’s off, have you seen how much of a mission they are to put on? Why on earth would a non cross dressing inclined man want to wear a bra? Not wearing a bra, or any underwear for that matter, is one of the perks of being a man, right up there with getting away with bed hair and being able to urinate while standing upright.

Boob Milk Bottles[48]

I have always known that the Japanese are somewhat more eccentric than most, mainly because they appear to have an incomplete understanding of Western culture. Anyone remember the English swear words on shirts a few years back? [Check out www.engrish.com for more Asian eccentricities]

However, there is usually always some kind of method to the Japanese madness ingenuity. Take the boob shaped milk bottle dispensers, for example…

Absolute. Genius!

 

Until the next time “Milieunairs”!

 

Bookmark and Share