Japan is the kind of country used panties from a vending machine count as souvenirs, where the club plays “old school funk” à la Wild Cherry with a live band flanked by exotic dancers and laser bars as if trapped in a glitchy, dingy version of the Thomas Crowne affair, and where all Burger Kings have a smoking section.
The country’s love hotels and host bars boast the mildest to craziest indulgences—and yet, when it came to hookups, I couldn’t get a rise out of anyone in the land of the rising sun. After a meaningful journey through the cesspool of American Tinder, the sheer culture shock of Tinder in Japan kept me laughing far more than knocking boots this month.
I rampaged across Japan with the tenacity of a hoarder at a fire sale, hanging my hat in the red light district of Tokyo while having small spasms at Pachinko parlors and absconding with myself to the sleepy, slightly snowy town of Kyoto. I left the country from Osaka, a place I very well could’ve gotten laid had the dicks around me been slightly less whiskeyfied and the woman writhing on me at the club just a little less directly out of Rock of Love revival auditions.
Being that I’m now in a committed relationship and basically have the D on speed-dial, I figured I’d finally try my luck at solely pursuing my one true love™—going down on my fellow females. Needless to say, the love is pretty damn dead on that front.
The guy I’m dating is great but half a world away. The women of Tinder in Japan were gorgeous and inspiring in their willingness to practice English by any means necessary—save for that whole “actually being sexually interested” thing. Nothing says “I’m looking for language practice” like a revealing selfie on a dating app, and I was apparently too lovestruck to notice the signs and say sayonara.
As soon as I’d get close enough to ask a potential partner out on a date, I’d instead get thanked—either because they couldn’t understand me and just wanted to keep speaking English, or because they were flattered but couldn’t be bothered to reject me.
I certainly have a lot to be thankful for when it comes to the bottom of the flashing-LED-encrusted barrel of idiosyncrasies and discarded asymmetrical man thongs that is Tinder in Japan. My cup runneth over. Weird thanks to my fellow travelers missing me enough to send atrocious screenshots of their favorite Tinder fails this side of Hokkaido.
This stunning screenshot is one of many sent by friends who were frankly stunned by the oddities of Tinder in Japan. What’s truly remarkable about Nike is the bus stop/bulletin board backdrop making for the world’s least sexy lingerie shoot. If Nike is the goddess of victory, this iteration might be he one who won the hearts of truck stop patrons everywhere. At least there’s a fire extinguisher for when things get too hot, hot, hot.
The next time you gaze up at your flickering light and contemplate changing the bulb, think of Will’s unnecessarily acrobatics in accomplishing the same damn simple task. Will is the type of man to do a handstand on a chair and swap out the dead batteries of a smoke detector with his feet. The fumigation tent sheets he’s splayed upon certainly don’t add to the sex appeal of a man hoping to change that whole “bright future behind” him thing with the flick of his wrist and the help of Thomas Edison.
Mr. Adults must be a Mr. Children tribute band, because every country needs their own Boyz II Men, I guess. He’s also apparently in possession of the one ring, as indicated by the grayscale setting, incidentally one of the worst Photoshop collages I’ve seen on Tinder. Which man will I get out of Akihiro—the crooning old guy or the backwards hat douche on the verge of orgasm?
Sho is for the Spirited Away fetish crowd, which is undoubtedly huge: No Face is the ASMR tease of the Miyazaki world. Only able to communicate in “ah”s, you’d be hard pressed to find a partner who sounds more suspiciously like he’s in the throes of receiving mediocre oral. Between the formfitting black outfit and Sho’s horrifying expressions, it’s difficult not to be a little intrigued by the suspect gradient shadows, which make it seem as if Sho either pissed his onesie or ran through a sprinkler system straight to your heart.
I will pay you $5 to explain to me the mechanics of this glorified ball slingshot. I am not kidding. This is the most disconcerted I’ve been about potentially getting laid abroad since I ended up in bed with a man watching humiliation porn while he told me all the reasons I shouldn’t touch him after he’d touched down on the continent of Asia. I’d be also willing to pay $1 for every dildo photoshopped into Hunchoong’s hands.
Honorable Mention: Tadashi
Photo via Moyan Brenn/Flickr