Japan's many bizarre vending machines are world famous. There are vending machines here for everything from underwear to adult toys to eggs and ramen. The Japanese are masters at making them shallow, so they can be placed on a narrow sidewalk without sticking out into the street. Vending machines that accept the equivalent of a $100 bill are quite common, too. Beer vending machines are one of the most interesting to foreigners. They tickled me, too, when I came to Japan. Back in my single days, my gaijin friends and I would spend our summer evenings sitting by our favorite beer vending machine in front of the train station, and talk to people as they walked by.
Now, however, the days of the beer vending machine are coming to an end. In an effort to keep alcohol out of the hands of minors, and partially out of sensitivity to how Japan looks in the eyes of the international community beer vending machines have been quietly banned. As of this April, the only machines that are allowed are ones that require a drivers' license to be inserted, for age verification (my father-in-law had to buy one of those for our liquor store). Minors can't get beer from vending machines any more, however Japanese shops and convenience stores don't really have the custom of "carding" people to see if they're of age to buy beer or cigarettes -- hence, anyone who reasonably passes for the age of 20 can probably buy anything they want from a convenience store without question. Also, minors are allowed to work in convenience stores that carry alcohol which means that verifying the age of customers would be pretty hard to do.
We've got a host of excellent items for you this evening, including:
- A full *dozen* great new adult manga, including new December's Girl, a wondeerful sexy maid erotic work, and a new Electronic Love Princess (fighting girl hentai manga) for you
- On the anime page, there's a very cool manga -- a tribute to Space Battleship Yamato by today's top manga artists (something I love)
- A host of back-in-stock photobooks, including Nishihara Kyoko's lovely "Mezame, Kusanagi Jun's Kubire 2, and Mignonne ~ D Cup Angel"
- New magazines, including NG NuGasu, an interesting "sex indoors and out" magazine
- Several excellent bondage and S&M books on the gouka-bon page including a high-quality Black S&M Costume photobook, an extremely detailed bondage photobook, and a super item featuring Miura Aika
- For DVD fans, two great new items -- Legend of Seven Nights vol. 2 (with another seven luscious Japanese AV idols) and a reprinted item, the excellent Large Breast Girls' School, featuring Ariga Miho, Wakana Sena Nanase Ayumi, Ozawa Madoka, and more -- all in a great English-subtitled story
- New videos, including a very special item for fans of Sawaguchi Miki, one of the most famous huge-bust AV actresses of the late 90's (and also one of the hardest to find videos of)
- The new DVD & Video CD Soft Catalog is in, with nearly 2 hours of great sampler footage on two MPEG discs (see it on the CD ROM page) -- an excellent value
- We've got a "visual guide" for the new Macross Playstation game VF-X2, on the anime page
- 20+ new JPOP CD singles, including TMN, Amuro Namie, Chinen Rina and J-Rocker Aikawa Nanase -- all at the lowest prices you'll find on the web
- For collectors of cute cards, we've got some out-of-production Card Captor Sakura anime cards, and some sexy idol cards featuring the buxom Pirates, on the Cards & Puzzles page
- Finally, new "reserve subscription" magazines, which you can get sent to you automatically every month. For hentai fans, we will now carry Bug Bug and the excellent Tech Gian (with a CD ROM full of games and images!). For yaoi fans, we'll have the excellent Junk Boy available -- an excellent yaoi manga magazine with 450+ pages each month.
Remember that you can find bargain and discounted items on the higher-numbered pages (video page 3 and 4, magazine page 3, photobooks page 2). There are always lots of cool items on these pages, which you can pick up for a great price.
I'm writing this update in -- you're going to be shocked -- Malaga, Spain. Right at the bottom of the country, it's a beautiful city facing the Mediteranian, known for bullfighting, Bacardi and also as the birthplace of Picasso. I'm here on busines, but Chiharu is here with me, and we're enjoying some rare time together away from the kids -- the first such time we've ever been able to take. Malaga is great -- the wine, the seafood -- and we're having fun. We'll be back in Japan in a few days!