No. Heck no. A million times “no”.


There’s usually nothing wrong with people trying to make a quick buck, especially if the ones on the other end of the transaction think they’ve ended up with a good deal.

Besides, I’ve bitten into a lot of anime-related merchandising offers myself. DVDs, CDs (character and soundtracks), fanbooks, figures – the list goes on. If it’s affordable and in good taste, I’ll probably buy it.

But this . . . THIS . . .

To collect, perhaps. It might be fun to have them mounted in gilt-edged frames and hung on the walls to frighten the kiddies. (And any sensible adults within viewing range.) But what self-respecting person would actually wear these?

Now I realise that we can’t stop anyone from snapping this stuff up – and having seen what sorts of things they peddle in Akihabara, I expect there are many who will. Tastes differ; it takes all sorts to make up a population. De gustibus non est disputandum.

So by all means, carry on and close the deal if you feel you must. Just be aware that the hacking, retching noises in the background are coming from my throat.

Akihabara booty


Diego catalogues the paltry spoils of his recent incursions into Tokyo’s famed otaku stronghold.

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Buy! Buy! Buy!

Pull out those discount cards, lads!

In the latest version of its “In Pictures” photo gallery feature, the BBC News website takes us on a shopping tour of Tokyo’s world-famous otaku paradise, Akihabara.

Many of the featured items aren’t new, but I always get a kick out of seeing these delightful little oddities. Here’s my pick of the lot:
A USB-powered microscope
A necktie with a built-in cooling fan (also USB-powered)
Tinned pasta (best eaten with tinned bread!)

Crime in Otaku Central

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Imagine you’re a down-to-earth, law-abiding otaku out on a leisurely Sunday stroll between your usual haunts in Akihabara. Suddenly, a girl bumps into you and quickly demands an apology. While you’re trying to bend over double to show your regret, her brother swoops in out of nowhere and asks for further proof of your sincerity. The choice: cut off your finger or pay a million yen.

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