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A while ago, I slept with a Soshokukei Danshi (“grass-eating boy” or “Herbivore Man”)

To be more clear, I slept in the same bed with him, with my head pillow on his arm.  And nothing more. One of the definitions of the “grass-eating boy” is that they are not aggressive for sex, and they would sleep next to a woman rather than try to sleep with a woman. It’s true, I have experienced sleeping with a “grass-eating boy” and he was as nice and quiet as a little lamb. And it was, well, strange, but nice. For the first time in my life, I slept with a man who didn’t try to jump on me and make me his.

It was after a wild night out we had started the night with bunch of our friends in a izakaya (Japanese drinking establishment which also serves food to accompany the drinks, like a tapas bar). Drinks were flying around, lots of chatting and laughter, we started from one bar and hopped around different bars. After long hours of bar hopping, some of us ended up in my apartment and continued to drink. Some people started falling asleep, some of them went home, and when I realized, it was just me and one guy falling asleep on the floor. I had known him for over several months, good friends, drink together occasionally, with some flirtation that never lead anywhere special. So I left him where he was, on the floor, and headed for my bed to get some sleep.

It was some time later I was awaken by the guy coming into my bed. I kept my eyes closed and he slipped under the blanket and I could feel he was looking at me. I didn’t especially have a feeling for him, and I wanted to see where this was all going, so I kept still to see what happens next. Then touched my hair softly, and he put his head on the pillow. We were lying next to eachother in the same bed, with our feet touching.

I still kept my eyes closed, pretending to be sleeping.

tik tak tik tak… nothing happens.

I opened my eyes and our eyes met. This is the moment, things usually, if it hadn’t happened yet, happens. The magic moment when two people are very close, feeling happy with the alcohol and the warmth of the bed, and our eyes meet… passionately.

tik tak tik tak… nothing happens.

He smiles at me and touches my hair. Then slips his arm under my neck, and we fall asleep. Next morning, he left for the first train home after a nice quiet goodbye and thank you. So this is my first experience of sleeping with the grass eating boy. It’s kind of cute now that I think about it. But I’m still surprised there are these kind of guys now a days.

Grass-eating boys… we can safely and comfortably sleep next to them without being attacked! Takes some fun away, but it was quite a nice experience!

Finally, a story about a grass-eating boy’s  konkatsu experience has become a TV show in Japan. A new TV show called Konkatsu! (婚カツ!) started airing since April 20th. It’s on Fuji TV (channel 8 in Tokyo) on Monday from 21:00.

The plot is something like this: Kuniyuki Amamiya is the unemployed son of a tonkatsu restaurant owner (get it? they are playing with the word Konkatsu and tonkatsu (deep fried pork) LoL ). Kuniyuki is a typical “grass-eating boy” and  is not particularly interested in dating or getting married.  Seeking a way to escape his family responsibility to take over his father’s restaurant business, he seeks for a job. He eventually finds a job that requires a married person (a local government officer responsible for countermeasures to the falling birthrate, how ironic), so he lies by saying that he has plans to marry, and he is forced to keep up the charade by starting a konkatsu experience. His unmotivated pursuit for Harun Hida,  a part-time worker from the restaurant is the key of this romantic comedy, though the series also focuses on family and friendship through Kuniyuki’s interactions with the other characters.

Essentially, the drama is simply about the awakening of grass-eating boy to the beauty of love and marriage. But it also shows all the konkatsu activities that Japanese people currently practice. Might be interesting if you have been reading my blog! But don’t expect it to be too good, I’ve watched it and…. well… I much prefer to watch sex and the city lol

More information on Fuji TV website:http://wwwz.fujitv.co.jp/kon-katsu/index.html

konkatsu

Remember when I wrote about the “meat-eating girls” and “grass-eating boys” back in February? (if not please see News alart! Increasing population of “Grass-eating boys” ) Since these terminologies were introduced to the society, it’s become hot words of the season. Everywhere I go, in parties, izakayas (Japanese bars), gokon, and office drinking, people talk about thier own love life using these terminologies…

“She is such a ‘meat-eating girl,’ she goes to gokon every week trying to get herself a boyfriend!”

“Oh stop being such a ‘grass-eating boy,’ that’s why you haven’t dated for 2 years now. Get over your ex and go out there like a wolf!”

“Eversince I got a girlfriend, I don’t have the motivation to go out anymore… I’m totally becoming ‘grass-eater'”

“Would you say you are a ‘meat-eater’ or ‘grass-eater’?

If I remember correctly, last year, we had a similar type of categorization that became very popular… it was about whether one is S (Sado) or M (Maso). It became very popular among youngsters to talk about whether one is S or M. It wasn’t really about sexuality they were talking about, but more about life styles and dating style, defining masochism entirely in terms of control. They even sold T-shirts that says “I am M” or “I am S”… you see, Japanese people like to categorize themselves. There is always some hot topic of categorization in the society at any time… sometimes it’s S&M, sometimes it’s by blood type, or the type of job you do, or style of fashion. They love categorizing themselves and identifying the group they belong to. Why??? It’s because Japan is a country of homogeneous population. Most people here are 100% Japanese by blood, with the same black hair and brown eyes, speak Japanese, learned the same stuff under one educational system, watch same TV and practice no religion. We are all the same…. so, to make things bit more exciting and to create some differences and find distinction, we have to categorize ourselves using certain parameters.

Anyways, right now, Japanese youngsters are crazy about categorizing themselves into “grass-eaters” (not-agressive in attracting the opposite sex) and “meat-eaters” (agressive in attracting the opposite sex).

Lastnight, I went out with bunch of Japanese boys. Well, it wasn’t a gokon or anything, I know all of them pretty well and we were just casually drinking to celebrate approaching weekend lol As we start to get drunk, we started to talk about the recent updates in our love life, and of course, one of the guys started the hot topic by asking “would you say you are a ‘grass-eater’ or a ‘meat-eater?” The 4 boys regarded themselves as “grass-eaters” and they were proud to be “grass-eaters.”

Then I noticed, that guys think it’s cool to be a “grass-eater.” If a man can say that he is a “grass-eater,” it means that he gets a lot of girls attention without trying, that he is Don Juan who doesn’t need to pursue women.  “I’m not agressive, I don’t try hard, I’m just chilling out but somehow, girls love me” is the attitude they had when they talked about how vegetarian they are these days!!! They even started to debate which one of them loves eating the veggies the most but at the same time gets girls…

Boy 1: “no, I think I’m more of a ‘grass-eater’ then you are, I haven’t even been to gokon fsince last year!”

Boy 2: “Oh stop it,I’m more “grass-eater” then you, I don’t even have a girlfriend but you do”

Boy 1: “I didn’t try to pursue her though, she came on to me. I was a complete gentleman with her. I’m totally a ‘grass-eateting kind’….”

“So what about you?” they asked me. “Are you a ‘grass-eating kind’ or a ”meat eating kind’?”

And I said… “Oh, I’m a total ‘meat-eater,’ totally….  I know what I want, at least I know I don’t want some veggie loving feminine men… I’m as ‘meat-eater’ as T-rex and I’m proud to be a T-rex” wink** 😉

field_guide_trex

My friend from NY came to visit me, it’s her first time in Japan, in Tokyo. She is very curious about Japanese culture, Japanese food, touristic sights and Japanese life so I took her around to show her all the fascinating things in Tokyo.

I started the day in 10am Shibuya and we went around everywhere until 12am in Roppongi. To be specific, this was the Tokyo tour course that I came up with. (And I think it was a damn good course I came up with! There were so much that I hadn’t seen myself)

  • 10:00 Shibuya crossing and a picture with Hachiko
    Shibuya: A shopping and eating district popular with a lot of young Tokyoites. The best place to get oriented is the Hachiko exit, which opens onto the five-way “scramble crossing” under the giant video screen.(seen in Fast and Furious Tokyo)
  • 10:30  Train ride to Kichijoji and a walk around Kichijoji
    Kichijoji: A western suburb of Tokyo which once enjoyed a reputation as an artists’ colony, and today it is filled with stores from little boutiques to the big department stores.
  • 11:00 Walk through the famous Harmonica Yokocho (Harmonica street) in Kichijoji
    Harmonica Yokocho:  narrow alleys of small shops, boutiques, bars and yakitori restaurants in Harmonica Yokochō, on the north side of the station
  • 11:30 Brunch in Japanese cafe in Kichijoji
  • 12:30 Walk in Inogashira park in Kichijoji
    Inokashira park

    Inokashira park

    Inogashira park: The highlight of Kichojoji, a large park with long walking paths surrounding a lake. The park is filled with both cherry trees and maples, making it an excellent choice for both flower viewing

  • 14:00 Walk in Koenji Shotengai (shoping street)
    Koenji: Since Koenji was largely unaffected by the 1980s building boom, many of the houses and shops in the area are small and reflect the character of pre-boom Japan, the “good old times.” The Japanese style arcade-commercial street is worths a walk
  • 16:00 Back to Tokyo metropolitan areas, Shinjuku
    Shinjuku: A major commercial and administrative center, housing the busiest train station in the world and various shopping malls and department stores
  • 18:00 Dinner in Omoide Yokocho (Alley of  nostalgia), Shinjuku
    Omoide Yokocho: a small alley is full of  yakitori bars serving beer, sake and chicken. Great atmosphere and food
  • 19:00 Drink in Golden street, Shinjuku
    Golden street: A small alley with many many many bars with bartenders with strong characters. Walking from Kabuki-cho to the east, you will find Shinjuku Golden Street, a place where the atmosphere of the “good old days” is retained.
  • 20:00 Strall around Shinjuku Kabukicho
    Kabukicho: an entertainment and red-light district in Shinjuku, Tokyo, Japan. Kabukichō is the location of many hostess bars, host bars, love hotels, sex toy and porn shops,  and nightclubs, and is often called the “Sleepless Town”img_0920
  • 21:00 – 23:00 Night out in Roppongi
    Roppongi: a district of Minato, Tokyo, Japan, famous as home to the rich Roppongi Hills area and an active night club scene. Many foreign embassies are located in Roppongi, and the night life is known to be popular with many Westners and “forigner-loving friendly Japanese (female)”
  • 23:00 – 25:00 Club Alife in Nishiazabu (a peek in Tokyo Meet Market)
    Club Alife: Alife is a famous club for friendly mingling for young Tokyoites. From what I’ve heard and seen, it is one of few places where Japanese men do chat up Japanese women

There you have it, if you have the energy to be out for 15 hrs in Tokyo, you should definitely try this tour plan once. It’s a fast and efficient way to see everything about Tokyo, from suburb to urban, from old to new, from East and west, and young to old. And of course, I did take her to Club Alife so she can take a look inside Tokyo Meet Market.

I also told her much about what I’ve seen and heard about Tokyo Meet Market. And though she was fascinated by the detailed rules and conventions that are practiced in the TMM, she wasn’t a bit surprised by the concept of Tokyo Meet Market and the hunt for marriage (konkatsu) because the underlying facts, that it is becoming harder and harder to find the right partner, and that women now need to be aggressive about marriage is the same, whether it’s Tokyo or New York.

So what are the similarities and differences between Tokyo Meet Market (TMM) and New York Meet Market (NYMM)

  1. Women are becoming agressive hunters, as in Nikushoku-kei (meat-eating girls)
    More and more women are agressive to find a partner and to get married,  as well as being sexually agressive. The difference between TMM and NYMM is the degree of agressiveness. Women in TMM are agressive but to lesser degree than women in NYMM.
  2. It is becoming difficult to meet the right partner
    The difference here is that in NYMM, there are so many choices, so many people, so much interactions that it is hard to identify the right partner… while in TMM there are many people but so few interactions and so few opportunities to get to know one anohter, it is difficult to find the right partner from such  few choices.
  3. Even if you meet the right partner, it is difficult to develop a good relationship
    The difference here is the reason for this difficulty. In NYMM people are very open, so open that the relationship evolve very fast into sexual relationship, even on the night the couple meet… which often makes the them “friends with benefits,” or in another word, f**k buddies. While in TMM, people are so shy and closed, it takes a looooooong time for the couple to open up, become initimate, and develop the relationship… which eventually reduces the initial excitement and attraction and they just remain friends… for ever

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What is Tokyo Meet Market?

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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