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Gokon report #5: All the fun of golf-kon

Posted on: March 3, 2009

Romance meter: 47%
Conclusion: Golf-kon is a gokon where the participants play golf. Compared to normal gokon in a restaurant, participants tend to have more fun and develop stronger bonds through sports.

Genre: Golf simulator bar and 2 plates of pasta
Show time: February 25th 8pm
Running time: 150 min
MPAA rating: PG

Guys team: 3 guys including, Mr.Golfer, Mr.Obama, Mr.”I’m 24 but I look 37″ who all work for a trading company
Girls team: 3 girls including myself

Synopsis:

Golf-kon, essentially is a gokon in a golf course or a gokon in a golf simulation bar. This time, it was in a golf simulation bar, very expensive, so expensive that we only ordered 2 plates of pasta… and a lot of drinks.

3 girls arrived fashionably late, and 2 guys were already waiting for us, though the third person did not arrive 20min before the end of the night. We talked a little, drunk a little, and played the golf simulation game for an hour. That was fun, we paired up and played against the team. But personally, what I thought was more funny than the golf simulation game itself was how this guy named Mr.Omaha was so proud of him name because it’s so close to Barack Obama. So proud he called himself “Mr.Obama” and so proud that his player name was input as “Mr.Obama!” He also wanted us to call him Barack. ahaha!

After the game, we went back to the table and the 2 guys chatted up the girls…. this was new! In most cases that I have seen, guys are often quiet and girls have to make the effort to make them talk. Apparently, this kind of behavior shows that the guys are used to going to gokon, and they are used to chatting up women in gokon, for better or for worse. Then the third person then arrived who seems more used to going to cabaret club than gokon, hear this out. This third person, I really thought he was 37 years old or even older. But he proudly told me, “I am only 24 but I look 37, but the cabaret hostesses tell me I can pass for 30 because they are so nice!” good for you!

After some drinks,  guys started to talk about their break up stories and ex girlfriends that they still miss. And to make it even worse, they thought it would be a good idea to go around the table and share our break up stories… “We’ve given you enough respect and pampering for your career, and now you want sympathy for your lost love? ” is NOT exactly what came out of my mouth, but I did stand up and said “I should go home now, it’s getting late” I was ready to leave. And so were the guys. The guys left us in front of the bar and went for another drink, apparently not acceptable from girls’ point of view.

But I gladly said good bye and went to a really good yakitori-bar because I was soooooo hungry! And it was in the next bar where 2 cute French guys smiled at me and my friend, “bonsoire” and I happily smiled them back with a cold beer and a nice juicy chicken skew in my hands.

Review:

An employee in a Japanese general trading companies (“Shosha-man”) is apparently a very desirable eligible bachelor for Japanese women. Apparently, they have very clean sophisticated image, they have fairly stable job where most people work for the entire life and get handsome retirement package, and with some luck, he might be transferred to a foreign based branch someday and you, the wife, and the family may live in a big house in a foreign country, paid by the company. They’ve got everything a Japanese girl could dream of! so much so that the bachelors working for trading companies are called “Shosh-man” just like batman, superman, or spiderman! Personally, I would die for Spiderman‘s kiss but not sure about Shosha-man’s kiss…

Therefore, the 3 guys are “desirable” and they know they are very “desirable” for Japanese women, despite their physical shortcomings (short, scrawny, and “I’m 24 but I look 37”). And they have rich experiences being pampered by women in gokon and even cabaret clubs. It’s a little hard to hold conversation as equals with guys like that. It seemed to me, that they are used to being pampered but they want more, they want the girls to worship them, flatter them, respect them, …. because they work for a trading company….? While most of the conversation was centered around thier career, as usual, there was some other topics of conversation.

It is often said that Japanese avoid verbal conflict and that tooron ‘debate’ is not compatible with their traditional communication patterns. People usually avoid conversation which may lead to exchange of different opinions, including politics, religion, philosophy in life, international relations. They would much prefer nodding and agreeing, so most people talk about things that are not directly related to their own life and views. TV shows, comedy, movies, anime, trendy places to go… Which is still ok, I can stand that, though I cannot participate much except for the Western movie conversation. It was a real turn off, for the guys to start bragging abour their exes and comparing the misery of their breakup stories. And for them to ask the girls to share our break up stories? C’mon!

I thought gokon was a place to meet people, and hopefuly, a place to look attractive and a place to impress the opposite sex. Or has gokon suddenly become a cheaper version of “cabaret clubs” where women are expected to comfort and sympathize men rather than have men impress and attract women?

Result:

The organizers exchanged the contact information of the fellow members from guys and girls team and the participants recieve the contact information of the opponent team members. Apparently, this way of contact information exchange shows lack of private affection… less promising than personal exchange of contact information.

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From the Western perspective, what goes on in the Japanese dating scene is really different and interesting! In this shy nation of Japan, meeting new people is almost institutionalized, dating and romance is littered with conventions that protect people from social awkwardness. What are dating conventions and rules in Japan? How do the shy Japanese people meet new people, develop affection, and express their passion? As I research and answer these question, I will write a real time report of what's going on in the Tokyo dating scene, or the "Tokyo Meet Market" here in this blog. I hope you enjoy my blog and a trip around Tokyo Meet Market with me!

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