However, I'm not going to be posting pictures of myself. Instead, I'm going to take you guys on a little tour of the bridge again, including three videos of common performances.
Okay, so there's this guy named Maria, and he has some kind of weird cult following. Yes, it's really a guy. Trust me. When he "performs", HUGE crowds of Japanese girls (often in EGL or another street fashion) gather around and watch and laugh. But they're not laughing at him, they're laughing with him. It blows my mind. Maybe if I knew what he was singing about, I'd get more out of it. Anyone care to translate for me? My Japanese is mediocre, and clearly not up to the task of translating his song.
Okay, I have ABSOLUTELY no idea what's going on, here, and my buddy Hikaru didn't seem to have any idea, either. Hikaru told me that I needed to get a horse to follow me around. If anyone knows what their deal is, PLEASE let me know.
This guy is out there EVERY WEEKEND, ALL DAY doing exactly what you see in this video. He does not stop. He does not eat. He takes very short breaks to smoke and drink water, but otherwise he does this ALL DAY LONG. I'm not exaggerating. What you can't see is how hot it is, out there. He actually speaks very good English, but he's very surly. I asked his name, and as near as I could make out, he said 'Talo'. But when I asked him why he was doing what he was doing, he ignored me. Don't let his surliness give you the wrong idea... I think this guy is freaking awesome.
Alright, time for some pictures!
People may or may not be amused by this.
Okay, this guy spent like, two hours pointing at my moustache and giving me thumbs-up signs. After those two hours, I finally gave in and decided that I'd take a picture of him. This is exactly the sort of weird stuff that you see in Japan.
Anyway, to get to the tour part. I'm going to take you on a tour of the cliques of Harajuku. Now, a ground rule: every group has a bunch of people in punky Japanese street fashion. Take for granted that they're in every group. I'll just be hitting the highlights of what makes each group different. This group, as you can see, tends to be where the sweet lolitas gather. You see a lot of white and pink in this area.
This isn't a very good picture, but you can still sort of get an idea. In the absolute middle of the picture is a couple groups of people. They all belong to the same sort of milling-about crowd. Generally speaking, you tend to see more gothic stuff in this area, as well as lots of J-Rock cosplays. This area and the next one are really sort of one big area that have many similarities.
This area, however, is almost always entirely either J-Rock cosplay or guro gothic kind of stuff.
This is where the people stand around who don't have groups. They tend to stand in ones, twos or threes. Never more than three, though. Usually they stand around and... Well, that's it. They just stand around. If you're by yourself, that's where you stand if you want your picture taken.
This is where I stood. You can see Hikaru on the left, otherwise known as the Free Hugs guy. This is where the free hugs are offered, and you'll never really see anything other than just punk street clothes. Occasionally a J-Rock cosplay, but that's about it.
Anyway, I hope you all enjoyed the little tour, and the glimpse of the weird side of Harajuku!