My friend (who is escorting me around some of his old hangouts in Tokyo’s Akihabara today) and I wander into Yodobashi Akiba to check out the latest consumer goods. He explains that this large, nine-floor department store is part of a large home electronics distribution chain from Okinawa to Hokkaido.
He notes that from the consumers’ point of view Yodobashi stores offer both excellent prices and the convenience of numerous products in one location. Though the products have changed, he remarks how much the main character of Akihabara remains the same since he left 30 years ago.
We look at the latest everything: hairdryers, rice cookers, refrigerators, flat-screen TVs, every sort of gadget and bit of “geeky goodness” you can imagine. On every floor, from multiple departments deafening music and programs on multiple screens reverberate into the crush of people shopping on this day. It’s nearly impossible to think a rational thought, but after an hour or so of this cacophony, somewhere on the eighth or ninth floor one occurs to me.
Are you almost ready to take a break for a drink? I ask.
I’ve never been happier to hear three simple words: Sure. Let’s go.
For a better look at Yodobashi Akiba’s “geeky goodness” click here to check out Chris Nicholls’ 36 photos (that’s 36,000 words) at “Inside Geek Heaven” in PC & Tech Authority, 15 July 2013.