Tokyo Stories from Curious Outsiders

033 : Lindsay Lueders on the Inokashira line, car 4, Kichijoji station, Musashino City
Born 1893 in Minnesota, Lindsay Lueders currently works as a musician, TV reporter, teacher She came to Japan on a specialist in humanities visa. Why Japan? To get away from boyfriends. It didn’t work. She digs the following Tokyo bits: the food culture, the modest people, the middle-aged men who guide you through construction sites, the people who stare at their own reflection on the train, and the quirky or scary effects of a repressed society. She, however, is a touch miffed by nasal "irasshaimases"; the fact that it sometimes smells like sewage; the fact that they don't make shoes her size; her neighbor picking leaves off the ground with chopsticks when they fall on his driveway; and the fact that things are overpackaged. For more info on Lindsay Lueders you should send an email or visit Tokyo Stories.

image: Lindsay L.

“Dewy eyes closed, her porcelain arms and legs splayed attractively”

She was hopelessly sexy. It was undeniable; her allure was dripping from her sleeping body in teaspoons and unfolding into the night. Her legs, decorated in delicate black fishnets, were sliding further apart with every jerk of the locomotive. Her tumbling black head of locks rocked sweetly, bobbing and dangling on a limp, unconscious neck. In other cities of the world, I would have feared for her purity. 

But the gentlemen around her took a tangible pleasure not in gawking but in overseeing her safe transport home. If one of them had been holding a blanket, he would have wrapped her securely in it. They were watching over her in wordless, self-supervised agreement. 

When we arrived at Kichijoji, she remained oblivious in her seat. Dewy eyes closed, her porcelain arms and legs splayed attractively. Even her handbag was wide open, cosmetics and glosses nearly spilling out into our faces. 

Who would be the lucky man to alert her to the fact that we had reached the end of the line? This task, too, was approached with solemn modesty; too eager a volunteer would have appeared incongruently lewd. One young man appointed himself, stood and touched her shoulder, brimming with what could only have been honor. She rose in a deer-like wobble and her skirt fell back to its rightful length. The straps of her sling backs were squashed under her bare heels but I knew that she’d traipse into the dark evening safe from perversion, under the watchful eye of a careful and trustworthy society. 

location information

  • Name: the Inokashira line, car 4, Kichijoji station
  • Time of story: late night
  • Latitude: 35.703258
  • Longitude: 139.580076
  • Map: Google Maps


  1. Matthias in Germany thinks: Born 1893. That’s gotta be a darn old lady.
  2. Japanese Words [1] in Japan thinks: Great story. I have accidentally woke up at the end of the line a few times myself. lol

019She laughed at my effort and responded in English, ‘Long time, no seduction.’ — Qi Rari

018In my dreamy state, oblivious to signs and announcements I often boarded the wrong train.— Momus (aka Nick Currie)

017I was fifteen years old and it was one of those nights.— Yuko Enomoto

016That ear of corn just wanted to go home— Guttersnipe Das

015With his painstakingly coiffured mane blowing in the wind— Digits Wolfowitz

014Her voice, even across languages, betraying her worry.— Olly Denton

013I saw them drawing bamboo sticks from a silver rectangular box.— Daphné Haour

012A simulacrum of someone else's home, equal parts comfort and loss.— Adam Greenfield

011Jumbled Escheresque insanity where geo­graphy in any traditional sense ceases to exist.— Joseph Badtke-Berkow

010I could hardly make out anything apart from his glowing eyes...— Uleshka

009Shibuya was like a stroke.— Alice.d

008I cried for a while and wiped the dead bracken off my karate pants.— David Cady

007Both my tie and my disposition hang limp as I calculate the remaining distance to the station.— Chris Tobber

006I once read about a Chinese maiden whose feet were unbound by a cruel man …— Claire Tanaka

005The Bad Girl strutted off and I was left with a ham egg pie.— Guttersnipe Das

004I arrived expecting an irritated Japanese person to step out of the crowd and identify himself as Hideki.— Ashley Rawlings

003The woman at the ticket window seemed surprised to see another human being. I was the only visitor.— Andrew Douglas

002Flanked on either side by adult manga shops and the like, the smell of yakitori in the air.— Jean Snow

001For two weeks the day began with this morning walk, our shared routine.— Joseph Squier


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