Underwear! In vending machines! I’d heard the stories for years, at how select dodgy locations in Akihabara and other districts are home to the peculiarity of vending machines that dispense underwear. Particularly infamous are the tales of the machines that dispense *used* underwear…
Thankfully this was just your ‘standard’ machine, throwing out fresh panties and all manner of sex-related products. Still, it checked yet another box on my mental list of vending machine variations. I’ve now seen machines that dispense hot food, rice, flowers, canned ramen and oden, books as well as the ubiquitous cigarette and drinks machines.
So today your intrepid explorer will share with you the discovery of the panty vending machine. Maybe these things are common, but I for one hadn’t come across one before. I was especially surprised because it was there, sitting amongst a line of regular drinks machines along a roadside in Kumamoto. I guess when the opportunity calls it needs to be conveniently accessible!
I was just innocently passing my eyes over the row of 激安 (mega-cheap) vending machines, looking for a thirst-quenching drink on a hot summer day, when I was greeted with a rather suspicious machine. Tucked between a couple of drinks machines was a machine with a decidedly pink-looking interior. Over in Japan, ‘pink’ is the American ‘blue’ for adult stuff…
What have we here? 勝負下着 (battle underwear)! It refers to the underwear women (or men, I suppose) wear to impress their date. You know the type – leopard skin pants or fishnet stockings. How about a pair of lycra longjohns..? *shudder*
Not here though. Instead you can buy from a wide range of nurse underwear, actress underwear, or should the occasion call for it, schoolgirl underwear. For reference, the 1000 yen price tag is about 5 pounds.
And don’t forget the protection. Including grape and ramune flavour (a type of carbonated soft drink sold in Japan).
But wait! What’s this here..? I see another sign, not far from the panty machine.
「無人自動販売機コーナー」 – An unmanned vending machine corner, I read. Unmanned eh..?
Ho hoo… A secret 裏 vending machine area! The wonders of being able to read Japanese ^^;
And here we find magazines and DVDs. On re-consideration I guess that is a practical use for a vending machine. People can avoid the embarrassment of going into a shop to buy adult magazines and DVDs. Interestingly enough, I went here both in the day and night to take pictures. In the daytime, the machines were not lit up, making it very difficult to see inside. I’m not sure if it even worked before 6pm… Still, if that is a measure to protect children, why then is the other machine out in broad daylight??
Ahh well. That brings me to the close of this little adventure. Oh, and on a side note, I did also stumble upon *used* underwear for sale! It wasn’t in a vending machine, but one of the shops crammed into Akihabara, the popular electronics district in Tokyo. There were photos of the women who had worn the underwear along with the matching garment up for sale! I guess they have to cater for everybody’s needs… o.O; I found it hard to believe such items were for sale before I saw them for myself! Unfortunately it was in a store and I didn’t particularly want to draw attention to myself trying to photograph them o.O;;. But rest assured, it seems you can find pretty much anything there X_X.
Next time should be a more ‘wholesome’ post… ^^;. Adventures in the magical forests of Yakushima and prancing with beautiful sea creatures.