Before I took my first
step into that place, little did I know
what I was getting myself into; the people
I would meet, the money I would wind up
spending, how many
times I would return for more, and how much I would miss it and everyone when it was all over.
Going to Stylus became an every day thing, weekday and weekend, for a lot of people. Most everyone who walked through the door knew each other, or at least the regulars, and none of us were really there to get drunk, listen to music, or for nanpa (though they all that came with the territory). We were there for each other. Even after a night of clubbing or what not, you could show up at closing time and still find people there and hang out and drink till 8 or 9AM.
We would just sit around and talk about what happened that day, what we were doing tomorrow, and generally just screw around until 3 or 4 AM. Because it was better than staying at home and watching TV or sleeping like all the normal people. Of course some of us had work the next morning, but most didn't. Those that did have work didn't care. We would all still show up at Stylus the next evening and hang out and drink till the next morning.
It was the dirtiest, stinkiest, cockroach infested building I have ever seen. It had 2 floors - the first for the bar, music, and TV - the second for chilling out and talking (but I wouldn't sit on those couches if I were you 'cause I've seen what people have done on them). The walls were written all over with drawings and graffiti. I think the serving glasses were pretty clean though - maybe? I saw them wash 'em a few times! I won't comment about the bathroom.
All sorts of people went to Stylus. Mostly college students and young people who were goin nowhere in their lives, but also business professionals, nurses, carpenters, hair stylists, engineers, restaurant managers, and dance instructors. And can't forget about the drop-outs, puutarou, kawaii schoolgirls (drinking age is 20 by the way and I am not hentai), gyaru-kei boys and girls, and furiitaa. And glad I didn't run into yakuza or bosozoku. Stylus was where we all went to have fun and be stupid no matter who we were.
Then, on Sunday morning of October 1st, 2000, it's doors closed for the last time. But not before we packed in over 50 people for the wildest night ever. People were chugging liquor and pouring it all over each other left and right. And can't forget all the puking people and the people who passed out on the 2nd floor (though some people regularly slept on the 2nd floor). Even the cops showed up about 4 or 5 times to join us.
Thus was the end of a short, but exciting and unforgettable period in everyone’s lives. Some of us regulars still see each at our new hang out in Shimokitazawa every once in a while, but not as often as we would like. When we do meet, we all talk about the same old stuff. I may never meet some of the friends I made ever again, but we all needed a new start. And now it is time to get on with our lives.
NOTE: November 22, 2000 Find out about former bartender Yoichiro Kondo
You can still see Stylus on route 246 between Ikejiri intersection and Mishuku intersection in Setagaya Ward in Tokyo. It is about 10 minutes away from Ikejiri Ohashi station and 20 minutes from Sangenjaya station on the Denentoshi line.