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Friday, May 6, 2016

Japan's Sewer Museum

I’m into quirky - you know... people, architecture, products… that kind of stuff… even knowledge. Hence this blog.

But when it comes to museums (and restaurants), I am probably old-fashioned. I should note, however, that when it comes to museums,I'm all for interactive displays... the more stuff one can touch, the cooler it is... the only problem is that there are always a bunch a snotty kids touching everything, spreading their snotty germs.

When it comes to museums... I'm old-fashioned in the fact that I think there should be dinosaurs, mummies, natural exhibits of flora and fauna, artwork... I'm sure there are plenty of things in the history of this planet that possess a wow-factor.

Japan has more than its fair share of museums, and I have, in the past, enjoyed a leisurely stroll through various natural history, art (painting) and pottery museums catering to specifics.

I have not, however, walked through a museum that caters to a a single specific topic.

Would I waste my time perusing a museum of eyeglasses, such as the Sabae Eyeglass Museum in Tokyo?

I used to wear glasses as a teenager until I got contact lenses when I was 17. It was a great time… apparently my super-thick glasses were accidentally hypnotizing the teenage girls at my school into thinking I was some kind of pariah. Contact lenses… after finally getting over the imposed shyness, I had my first date at the age of 22. Bryndis... ahhhh, whatta babe. And she wore glasses! And short shorts ripped jeans.

Here at the Sabae Eyeglass Museum, you can see how they made glasses a long time ago. Why is this photo kindda blurry?
As I have aged, I now have to wear glasses to read and write… which sucks… because I do a lot of each on a daily basis. And I still have to wear the contact lenses underneath.I suppose I could get bifocal contact lenses, but the price isn't in focus for me at this time.

So… why would I be interested in a museum of eyeglasses? It was like female repellent for me.

Come on in, everybody... let's get a historical perspective on things that made you feel like you were less of a human being as a kid. Or, if you've never worn glasses, why the fug would you care about the history of something you can't even begin to relate to?


How about a parasite museum such as there is in Tokyo - actually called the Meguro Parasitological Museum?

Well… I admit that I am kinnda curious to see some parasites... I'm thinking Flukeman from the X-Files... and I’m not squeamish about such things (or anything, really) (I think)… although before hearing about this parasite museum, I’ve never actually thought to myself… hmmm… I need to go and see what a parasite looks like.
Flukeman from the X-Files... he's a parasite, plus he could be in another museum.
I’m sure it could be fascinating... but it's a parasite... and don't we deal with enough of those at work? Perhaps if I was giddy with horniness or booze, sure I’d go to the museum and probably have a great time… but that would be more on the company than topic of viewing... and really... if one took a woman to see a parasite museum... unless she was into gross stuff like that, it could be a real turn-off, and ain't nobody having any extra-curricular fun.

The very cute girl at the top will probably be a Nobel Prize winner in a few years, and certainly not interested in dating drunken fools. Yes, this is the real Tokyo parasite museum.
A Button Museum? Sure. Again… I am sure it could be a fascinating place. I use buttons all the time. I prefer the prospect of unbuttoning more, but again, while I appreciate the fact that the museum in Tokyo has a history of buttons, and a goodly display of buttons (these are the buttons that fasten things, not the advertising buttons people used to pin to their bulletin boards - I’ve not seen a button wearing kid in ages… then again, I don’t get out much).

So. Many. Buttons...
But buttons? Even myself, with my bubbly personality and ability, I'm not sure I could make that a wild and wacky time.

Until Japan opened itself up to western ideologies in the 1850s, I’m pretty sure few Japanese had ever fastened a button. I’ll assume someone somewhere had. But obi belts, rope… that’s what I would assume the Japanese used… and then when it did embrace the West’s fascination for buttons, I’m pretty sure they preferred the good stuff from Europe or America.

Hmmm... buttons... but these are at the Rainbow Sewer Museum.
Which brings me to the Rainbow Sewer Museum. My pal Matthew (who is probably more adventurous than I am - especially since I no longer get as hammered as I used to get while in Japan… I haven’t been drunk since 1999) sent me a tweet about some guy in Japan who went and visited a sewer tunnel in Tokyo…

I wish there were photos or a video… no maybe I’m glad there was no video… as apparently this working sewer carries a lot of waste products flushed out and down by Japanese and gaijin alike. Pee, poop, toilet paper… sex toys (Someone I know apparently forgot it was inside and plopped it in and down a toilet)… whatever…

Do we really want to go and inspect such decadence? Second-hand?

Maybe… so I looked up museums, and apparently the Rainbow Sewer Museum in Odaiba, Tokyo provides real access to sewer pipes and pumping stations.

And, since Matthew mentioned it, you can hit the real live sewer tunnel tour at Airake Water Reclamation Center.

Ariake Water Reclamation Center 5F, 2-3-5 Ariake, Koto-ku, Tokyo, 135-0063

Opening Hours:
Tuesday-Sunday: 9:30AM - 4:30PM

Phone: +81 3-5564-2458

Website: - and to be honest, the website seems to not want to open.

Is the sewer museum still open for business?

Let us know! Okay, I mean me.

Andrew Joseph

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