Ten-madé Tobé (lit. Fly to Heaven), the dive on the first floor of my apartment building, celebrated its 25th anniversary last night. When Ten Tobé, as it is affectionately known, opened a decade and a half ago at the height of the bubble economy, it was a wildly popular “no-pants coffee shop”. Hostesses wearing mini skirts and roller skates would glide about a floor covered in mirrors, giving the male customers a fleeting, yet titillating peak up their skirts as they skated by.
The Ten Tobé of 2012 is a run-of-the mill snack, a bar where women pour drinks for and chat with their predominately male customers. Gone are the mirrors, the skates, the panty-less hostesses. From the point of hygiene, I suppose you could say the bar has greatly improved over the years, but I don’t think the men patronizing Ten Tobé these days are flying as high as heaven anymore.
 Ten-madé Tobé could also be translated as “Fly me to the Moon”.
 And people used to complain that the Japanese didn’t invent anything!