kikotoast (kikotoast) wrote,

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I'm taking an LGBT studies class, so naturally I think that I should use my opportunity in Tokyo to observe LGBT culture outside of San Francisco. What I've noticed is this weird contradiction: Japanese people hardly ever express homophobia or transphobia, and there are many popular gay comics and transgender celebrities. However I never see homosexual affection in public. Japanese people aren't very touchy-feely anyway, but I see straight people holding hands. Never two men or two women. The weirdest thing I've noticed is that men sometimes act erotically with each other at my work (of all places!). The most common thing they do is this: at the stage, one guy puts a 1,000yen bill in his mouth and lies on his back so the stripper can take it with her boobs. While she's rubbing her boobs all over his face, the guy's friends grab his dick through his pants or even start to jerk it up and down! I can't imagine this ever happening in the U.S. And it happens here almost every night. The guys also sometimes sit close together and hold hands in the club. I wonder if this is just the way Japanese men act in an erotic setting, or if they are bisexual (whether conscious of the label or not), or if these are gay dudes at strip clubs. Japanese people are really shy, so maybe even if there are a lot of gay men, they never express it in public. The most I've ever seen is the occasional guy checking out another guy. Even straight men never holler or whistle at girls. Perhaps places like strip clubs, bars, karaoke clubs, or dance clubs are the only place where men feel comfortable with expressing homosexuality. And forget about lesbians, that seems to be something entirely unheard of except on television or in cartoons. (Okay, well, I've gotten a few female customers who told me they are attracted to women.)
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