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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-07-2006, 01:06 PM Thread Starter
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"MAID in Japan"

Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2006
"Maid in Japan" cafes treat geeks like lords

TOKYO (Reuters) - "Welcome home, Master," says the maid as
she bows deeply, hands clasped in front of a starched pinafore
worn over a short pink dress.

This maid serves not some aristocrat but a string of
pop-culture-mad customers at a "Maid Cafe" in Tokyo's Akihabara
district, long known as a Mecca for electronics buffs but now
also the center of the capital's "nerd culture."

"When they address you as 'Master', the feeling you get is
like a high," says Koji Abei, a 20-year-old student having
coffee with a friend at the Royal Milk Cafe and Aromacare.

"I've never felt that way before."

Maid cafes dot Akihabara, which has become a second home
for Tokyo's "otaku" -- roughly translated as "geeks."
known for their devotion to comics and computer games and can
easily be identified by their standard outfit of track suit,
knapsack and spectacles.

In the cafes, girls dressed in frilly frocks inspired by
comic-book heroines wait hand and foot on customers, mostly
male, who might have once been obsessed with naughty
schoolgirls and nurses.

At one cafe, maids get down on their knees to stir the
cream and sugar into the customer's coffee.

At Royal Milk, diners can follow up a meal with a range of
grooming services, including ear cleanings.

Maids at some of the more attentive shops even offer to
spoon-feed customers at their table.

Maid cafes have mushroomed since they first emerged about
four years ago, evolving from cafes where waiting staff
emulated characters from a popular series of role-playing video
games, often dressed in schoolgirl-inspired uniforms.

Shops where computer-generated characters came to life to
serve coffee to gamers have since morphed into establishments
serving customers ranging from teens to septuagenarians.

Akihabara now boasts around 30 maid cafes that cater not
just to male geeks but also to couples, tourists and the merely


Patronage is also on the rise among young women, some
hoping to snag a geek and turn him into Prince Charming in a
real-life imitation of last year's hit movie "Train Boy," a
love story set in Akihabara that also became a popular TV

"These cafes offer a chance for men oppressed in their
daily life to escape into a fantasy world," said social
commentator Tomoko Inukai, adding that the phenomenon hardly
helped to promote gender equality in a largely male-dominated

For some of the "maids," who are often as keen on comics
and games as their customers, the job is a kind of virtual

"Being a maid is all-consuming," said Hinaka, a maid at
Royal Milk Cafe who goes only by her first name.

"I'm not acting like a maid here, I am one."

Besides serving diners from a menu of inexpensive cafe
fare, Hinaka also offers fully clothed massages, and for 9,000
yen ($75) customers can chat with her in a private room
cluttered with comic books, character figurines and animation

The average age of the maids at Royal Milk is 20, and an
appearance of innocence is a priority.

"The concept of these cafes, where women who are physically
and emotionally immature serve male customers, is not
surprising given the fetish for young women among Japanese
men," Inukai said.

Hinaka at Royal Milk gets plenty of stares as she moves
around in a black dirndl-inspired pinafore worn over a white
shirt, which is tied at the collar with a big ribbon that
matches her billowing, short pink skirt.

"Sitting here and admiring how pretty the girls are is like
admiring a flower," said Kinuko Nagahama, a 29-year-old woman
sitting alone at the cafe. "If I were a few dress sizes
smaller, I'd love to work at a place like this."

Hair salons in Akihabara are also cashing in on the trend.

At one such establishment called "Moesham," stylists
dressed as maids give shampoos and cuts to a mainly male
clientele not intimidated by the salon's decor, which resembles
the bedroom of a young girl besotted by hearts and lace.

A few customers even come three or four times a week for a
shampoo, said Yuki Todo, stylist-manager at the shop.

Yasunori Tomita, a 32-year-old salesman and first-time
customer, said, "I don't have a girlfriend at the moment so
getting pampered by maids will have to suffice for now."

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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-07-2006, 01:22 PM
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RE: "MAID in Japan"

Are you going to book your ticket soon??
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-07-2006, 02:28 PM
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-07-2006, 03:21 PM
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RE: "MAID in Japan"

What did you expect in a country where you can go into a Buro-Sera shop and buy used girl's panties from a vending machine and,excited by this,go out and commit some chikan?
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-07-2006, 03:43 PM
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RE: "MAID in Japan"

"I just wish for once someone would address me as 'sir' without adding 'you're causing a scene'"
--Homer S.

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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-07-2006, 04:04 PM
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RE: "MAID in Japan"

I like the fact that you can actually buy O2 from vending machines as well,... it's the future.[:D]
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-08-2006, 06:22 AM
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RE: "MAID in Japan"

Just think that these establishments are keeping repressed tech geniuses from going astray. Instead of getting thrown into the slammer for chikan activities and having their career destroyed, they have brought us Trinitron, Walkman, and the Grand WEGA.



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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-08-2006, 07:31 AM
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RE: "MAID in Japan"

Not to mention some killer Manga and Hentai.....
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