Japan for the Uninvited

Japanese culture from a bemused foreign perspective

Yobai (Night crawling)

Until quite recently in rural Japan, yobai, or “night crawling” would have been an introduction to sex for many young people. While a young woman slept, a silent intruder would creep into her room, slide behind her and make his intentions known. If she consented, they would have discrete ...

Aribai-ya (Alibi shops)

It doesn't really matter what you're doing, as long as no one finds out. In many parts of the world, this attitude is abhorred. In others, it prevails beneath the surface. In Japan, there's a whole industry dedicated to it. Alibi services ("alibi-ya" or "aribai-ya") do exactly what you'd expect - ...

Tentacle sex

The image of women being unwillingly violated by octopi dominates the Western perception of hentai (pornographic anime and manga). Our fascination with this small niche of Japanese erotica probably says more about the West than it does about Japan. Twisted as it might seem, the depiction of tentacled lady-botherers is just ...

Tamakeri

Tamakeri is a peculiarly Japanese form of BDSM which involves naked men get kicked in the testicles by women. Emerging in the last few years, it has been a growing niche in the Japanese porn. Apparently, a clean, hearty ‘Slap!’ of impact is very important. Astonishingly, most of the ball ...

Soaplands

Japan’s sex industry has a number of innovative variations on the brothel, but none of them seem as perfectly, hygienically Japanese as soaplands. They offer “assisted baths” that include the services of a prostitute. When a customer enters, he chooses his bathing companion from a selection of half-naked girls, who ...

Shibari (Japanese bondage)

Shibari, or kinbaku, is the Japanese art of bondage. It's a significant theme in Japanese eroticism and features in much of the culture's porn, which often dwells on themes of domination and submission. The approach and ideology of shibari contrasts slightly with Western ideas of bondage. In shibari, the aesthetic effect ...

Datch waifu (Sex dolls)

Sex dolls in Japan are not generally the grotesque, O-mouthed type, but tend to be much more sophisticated and realistic. In Japanese, these silicone dolls are known as datch waifu (Dutch wives), a name likely to be about as popular with Dutch ex-pats as “Turkish Bath” (brothel) was with the ...

Shitagi dorobou (Panty thieves)

In every country, there are men who steal women’s underwear from clotheslines for sexual pleasure. However, they are particularly common in Japan, where they are called “shitagi dorobou”. Unsurprisingly, “shitagi” means underwear, while “dorobou” is thief. For women living in the apartment blocks of Japan’s most built-up urban areas, where clotheslines ...

Nyotaimori (Body sushi)

Nyotaimori, "female body presentation", is a service allowing restaurant customers to eat from the skin of a naked woman. Apart from her crotch, which is usually covered with some kind of garnish, the model's modesty depends on the (temporary) position of the food on her body. Also known as "body ...

No-pan kissa (No-panty cafes)

At no-pan kissa (“no panties” coffee shops), waitresses wear short skirts and nothing underneath. Customers of these establishments are happy to pay a hefty premium on the overpriced food and drink to see a little more of the staff, and someone willing to pay extra for a better view might ...

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