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List your strangest encounter with an unknown person. I had a man ask me for a match and I said I don't have any. He handed me a pack and said I would need them where I was going. I would wake up the next morning in the Arctic circle. I didn't.

Beowulfsfriend 9 Sep 22

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often a woman's strangest encounter is with a man who wants something from her, and sometimes gets insistent. i have had a few of those. my second day in los angeles i was followed home by a strange young man who obscenely details all the things he wanted to do to me. i told him in no uncertain terms i had no interest and that he should go away, but he just kept following me and listing, um, activities. we were approaching a dark area i felt was particularly dangerous, after which, if he did not attack me there, he would then find out where i lived, so as he was telling me (for a change of pace) that he would do anything, anything i wanted, i turned and called him a liar. he was taken aback. i told him he was a liar because he said he'd do anything i wanted and he wouldn't. yes, he would, he insisted. i want you to LEAVE i said. he turned on his heel. i never saw him again.

another time i was in nagoya, japan, coming out of the immigration building, walking along its narrow path, when i met a man from africa coming toward me on that path, apparently heading toward the building. he stopped me and asked, as if we had been conversing, if i would like to go back to his place and have sex. well, that was abrupt! i laughed and said no. "why not?" "do i need a note from my mother?" he began to wheedle. i said no, but i couldn't get around him. this became tedious and annoying. but then i remembered what i had in my pocket. you see, every march 15, the japanese celebrate the honen matsuri -- the fertility festival. it's a festival for penises. i kid you not. men get drunk on sake and carry around a huge replica phallus (it takes about six or eight guys to lift it) and women try to touch it in order to ensure fertility; i kept my distance! the grounds of the shrine at which this takes place has little mushroom-like penises planted all over the place, and a gift shop selling phallic items ranging from candies and cakes to keychains. i had purchased a little golden keychain and now, on the path on the immigration building grounds, i whipped it out and showed it to my interloper. "i don't need you. i have my own!" he laughed so hard he let me escape.


I know of the honen matsuri festival. Japan is a wonderful and amazingly contradictory country. Any country that can schedule their May 1st protests (Pro communist) from 8am to 5pm with signs and yelling, but no violence, then pack up, right on time, and go home peacefully is different from the rest of the world.

@Beowulfsfriend different it certainly was. i spent a decade there. by the way, i have lost my little golden keychain and i miss it so much!


@genessa I hope you made it to the top of Fuji. I felt very spiritual there. No plans to do it again after so long ago. I try to get my kids to go over and hike it. Especially my son who speaks Japanese. I now live with the old Buddhist saying: a wise man climbs Fuji once, a fool twice. Best wishes and too bad about your keychain. I lost my hiking stick during divorce.

@Beowulfsfriend nope only visited fufi once, wasn't climbing it. i have no need to feel spitirual; natural is fine for me! sorry you lost your stick. i lost my first walking stick too, during a move (it was stolen).


@Beowulfsfriend stationed at marine base camp Fuji in 1962, climbed the east side, and wasted a pair of combat boots. A trip I never wanted to make again.

@HankSherman the bus ride wasn't any more pleasant, although i didn't have to ruin any apparel. i was among a gang of journalists being transported halfway up fuji to interview akira kurosawa. one journalist was a real pest; she kept haranguing is that we had better not interfere with her interview with a certain film person (i didn't know the person then and can't recall who it was now), someone we had no intention of bothering, since only she seemed to be interested in him anyway. she was loud and obnoxious and made the trip a minor hell. i would rather have ruined some boots than spend another second with her!


@genessa some people have no class at all....surprised that in a gang of journalist there wasn't someone to cool her heels.

@HankSherman you'd think! but no one stood up to her. it is possible they knew her from previous encounters (i didn't; i was new to japan and it was also my first trip to tokyo, whence we departed for fujisan) and knew better than to rile her. she seemed the type not to allow herself to be suppressed; she might have started an even bigger scene if we'd done more than ignore her.


@genessa she's a bully....bullies don't usually stop by being ignored,...most depend on it. Still it was not the responsibility of anyone there as an individual to correct a group would probably have been better. Anyway, every one probably lived through it, just a shame it was such a downer experience.

@HankSherman it didn't impact my life but i guess it made enough of an impression that i remember it after all these decades. then again, i remember all kinds of silly stuff lol. yes, she was a bully, indeed.


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