Harajuku Hijinks

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I spent one Saturday recently in Harajuku with some friends. For those that don’t know, Harajuku is an area of Tokyo that is a famous location for trendy shopping. And there are some really wild trends that the Japanese youth are into. However, in Japan, if you try to take pictures inside of most clothing stores, you will wind up with a store worker coming up to you and giving you some sort of mysterious Japanese lecture, and you will not know what’s going on but will infer that you should probably put your camera away. Fair warning. As a result of this trend, I don’t have pictures inside of stores. Instead, here’s a street perspective of a day in Harajuku.

Some girls giggling through an interview for the morning news show "ZIP!"

Some girls giggling through an interview for the morning news show “ZIP!”

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The mirrors that surround the entrance to this shopping center create striking scattered images of passersby on the street and escalators.

In Japan, many restaurants feature displays outside of the entrances that house plastic replicas of food that can be found on their menu, usually accompanied by the price. We ate here for lunch. I don't know the proper name for my meal, but it was raw tuna with an egg, sesame and some sauce on rice, and it was delicious!

In Japan, many restaurants feature displays outside of the entrances that house plastic replicas of food that can be found on their menu, usually accompanied by the price. We ate here for lunch. I don’t know the proper name for my meal, but it was raw tuna with an egg, sesame and some sauce on rice, and it was delicious!

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We stopped in this Shu Uemura boutique, and I learned who Shu Uemura was. The boutique stocks the industry’s best eyelash curlers, a very popular line of facial cleansing oils, and really wild false eyelashes that feature bright, bold colors, or sequins, or glitter, or feathers.

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I happened to glance outside while in Shu Uemura and witness this process of people marching by, escorted by police officers that were guiding traffic. I don’t know what kind of demonstration it was or if it was really more of a publicity stunt than anything else, but it was fun to chase down and watch go by.

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Takeshita Street is a street in Harajuku lined with shops selling all kinds of different styles of trendy clothes. There are also a lot of crepe shops scattered along the way. The store “WEGO,” pictured below, has a lot of great stuff, and I bought a watch there, but one thing that’s weird is the used clothes there and at other stores are pretty expensive – 1500 yen and up – for shirts that you could definitely get at Philly Aids Thrift for a couple of bucks.

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Oh. Also, Bart Simpson is on a lot of merchandise in Harajuku. I don’t know why. I wish I had purchased that Bartman shirt though. It’s pretty rad.

These were my exciting purchases of the day - adorable cats having a dance party and a pink sweater with knit dots that was on sale 50% and I thought was going to cost 1500 yen - but for some reason rang up as 425 yen. 'Twas a great surprise.

These were my exciting purchases of the day – adorable cats having a dance party on one sweatshirt and a pink sweater with knit dots that was on sale 50%. I thought it was going to cost 1500 yen – but for some reason it rang up as 425 yen. ‘Twas a great surprise.

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We ended the day the way every day should end – with crepes.

Bellies full of sweet delicious goods, we bid goodbyes to Harajuku, Takeshita Street, and this kind bear - until next time.

Bellies full of sweet delicious goods, we bid goodbyes to Harajuku, Takeshita Street, and this kind bear – until next time.

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