Back with another part of Ageha model, Emira Wiz director and Kyabajo Emiri Sawajiri’s book “Kyabajou Shacho….” to keep it short. Or “キャバ嬢社長 歌舞伎町No.1嬢王 愛沢えみりとしての生き方” Kyabajo Shacho Kabukicho’s Number One JouOu Sawajiri Emiri Toshite no Ikikata. Or Kyabajo Boss: Kabukicho’s Number One Queen. Sawajiri Emiri’s Way of Living.
The tagline for the book is “From a Yokohama Gyaru to a bad Kyabajo in Roppongi to becoming Kabukicho’s Number One and running an apparel brand Emiria Wiz with sales of 1,500,000 in the first month.” (Meaning 15,000 USD of sales.)
If you missed previous summary it’s here in part one. We’re finally into the meat of her kyabajo career and she doesn’t paint herself well, but it’s the reality of being a hostess. It’s not an easy place to work.
Parenthesis are my own thoughts or explanations, the rest is a summary.
Part Two: From Bad Kyabajo to Number 1 continued…
From meager life Emiri’s Number One
When Emiri was taking a guest to the toilet she heard the rankings being called out and her name was in the rankings (If you’ve never been to a host or hostess club, hosts and hostesses will take their clients to the bathroom. It’s weird but you get used to it). She was really happy and it pushed her to work even harder and in four months she was Number One at the club.
She was beyond happy when she got Number 1. It was the culmination of everything she had been working on. But it was an odd feeling. She never got called out at school so this was a bit embarrassing as well. But she loved the feeling of being Number 1. So she worked harder to be it. She decided to work six days a week. It was really hard because many of the girls would have birthdays (which involve big parties in host and hostess clubs and women earn a lot those times) so she would have to earn a lot more during those times.
Changing to Club Gentle
Even though she was Number One at the one club she didn’t feel like she was number one in Kabukicho and the idea of being the top girl in Kabukicho was what was driving her. She didn’t think she could achieve number one in all of Kabukicho at her club and she was scouted at the time (scouting and poaching is pretty common in the host/hostess business). The scout told her she could even bring in more high class customers. After a year of thinking she entered Club Gentle at age 21.
“I’m not going to quit until I’ve made more than all the other girls”
The new club had a lot of beautiful women. Being the new girl she went to the club everyday and really struggled. After being there for six months she really hadn’t outsold anyone and this brought on a bunch of emotional stress. But because she didn’t want to lose and not be outsold she appeared super conceited to other girls (DUH!).
She says “Who’s that? I don’t know and I don’t care. I hate them.”. She wasn’t interested in talking to the girls much less making friends with them. Even when another girl would help her she couldn’t even bring herself to say a simple thank you. Of course you need help working as a kyabajo but she couldn’t even do that. She was so focused on beating all these other girls that she looked at them like enemies. After work ended a lot of the girls would go out drinking or eating, but she would never do that. She was really a bad person.
Because of this the head of the club said “You’re the girl causing me the most problems.” She was really having problems with the other hostesses. When she had an important customer she would never let any of the girls around him and say loudly enough for other girls to hear that she didn’t want the customer being with them. The manager said she even sounded like she was trying to kill the other girls. But she couldn’t stop, she just saw them all as rivals. Because of this the rest of the girls really started to bad mouth her.
Two of the girls confronted her inside the bathroom they told her that a girl would be taking her seat with Emiri’s customer. She was so pissed she stood in the toilet for 10 minutes fuming. Afterwards she complained to the manager but this was of no use. Instead she got even more fussy saying “I’ll beat that girl, I’ll beat all the girls!” She was fully hot headed then. But the girl didn’t show up a few days later so she had no chance to fight her.
But after this she tried making in roads with the girls and some of them she was mildly friendly with. But one day a customer said “You’re really only after me for my money?” She was shocked by such a statement and asked why he would say that. It turns out that he heard from another customer that this other hostess was saying that to her customer. She lost a customer because of that. She was completely shocked. Why would this girl even start saying such things and poison the water? She was actually on good terms with this hostess and they were having fun the day before.
After this happened she decided she could only see the other girls as rivals and was right to think that way before. Besides she was trying to live for herself and that’s why she should only spend time on what would help her.
The tears won’t stop….
All she could think about was being Number One, but she was losing confidence. But she still felt so strongly that “I must be on top”. This defeating attitude made everyone else unwanted. She was too scared of even trying to make friends with the other girls. She thought spending any ounce of energy on them would make her lose her focus at her job. There was not even “a milimeter of focus left in her heart for anything outside of work”.
Every day was like this and there was so much she hated about it, and lots of days she didn’t want to go work. Why was it that even though it was the only thing she wanted, but as usual she was still low in the rankings? Work was so stressful and afterwards she’d just cry.
Customers wouldn’t show up anymore, when other girls were chosen instead of her, all these experiences that she had working as a kyabajo were so painful she’d end up crying.
After work she’d sometimes go to a massage place in Shinjuku to relax. The masseuses were Chinese and they’d all ask “in broken Japanese” “What’s wrong?” “Are you okay” (she uses katakana on this to refer to their bad pronunciation… uhhh this fumes me). Even though these girls knew nothing about Emiri, that they would care to ask warmed her heart. Everytime Emiri felt that she was unhappy or wanted to quit she’d go to this massage place and relax her stresses away.
They’d ask her “Emiri-chan what’s wrong” and she couldn’t find the words to respond, but they’d say “Keep doing your best”. These girls often saw her at worst, tears streaming down her face like a kid. She cried so much she thought her whole body was made of tears.
Even though Emiri is trying her hardest, why isn’t it working out? The club was a place she didn’t want to go to. She was weak. And what was so good about being strong? She really wanted to quit and run away.
A woman who she had gotten to know a little at the massage place said “I always think you’re going to tell me something, but instead of telling me all you do is end up crying.” She realized how much she must be troubling the staff but she couldn’t stop crying.
After she cried her eyes she went home and slept. Slowly she realized tears weren’t going to help or make her try harder. Everyone at the shop probably had the same worries and wanted to cry at the tough times. She was just going to have work harder. (If this book eliminated the word ganbaru, meaning to try hard, it would be half the size. New title Emiri’s way of ganabaru-ing through hard lifestyle choices).
The unreal one day of four dohan
So after that she continued working everday and of course continued doing dohan everyday. But she wasn’t entering the rankings (the rankings are usually the top 3-5 girls). At her old club Proudia this is how she was able to make it to number one so why wasn’t it working at Gentle?
She ended up visiting a Kyabajo speciality site that listed the hostesses often. Whatever club was listed first they would pick a hostess at of the top rankings to show off that club as a “billboard”. All the hostesses knew this so they would try really hard to get their club to the top of the site. But they really didn’t know how a particular club was chosen as the top so they were left just hoping.
Of course all the girls looked and checked everyday. It wasn’t just her or her club Gentle, all the other clubs were hoping for the same thing. But on the days she wasn’t helped or selling, she would be asked to help the top girls who were selling. By listening and asking them she was slowly learning the tricks of the trade.
But even though Gentle was a super popular club and lots of VIP came there, she was worried when she couldn’t do dohan or the customers didn’t come in and she was stuck there with nothing to do. But if she didn’t come to work there was no way she was going to get into the rankings. And making even one friend was hard to do in the club so her drive to try hard was failing. It was strange but her love of the hair, make-up and dresses that made up the “kyabajo” look were turning into negative things.
More time went by that way, but little by little she was selling a bit more. She finally entered the rankings as Number 3. The two other girls above her were stellar and both became the “billboard” for Club Gentle at one time or another on that site. That not one but three girls could be selling so much really spoke well about the club.
But she realized that just doing one dohan a day for the club wasn’t enough. So why not two or even three or there was one crazy time of four. She’d come into the club with one and having eaten with another beforehand and try to keep them all seperated in club and not being aware of the other. That so many people agreed to do dohan with her she was happy, but she thinks it’s really crazy now and not the best way of doing things.
To be continued…. A little bit left of part two to do and then three is when she talks about her time as an Ageha model and how she got into it. I’m a slow and lazy reader, but here’s hoping in between sakura we can finally get to her talk about working for Koakuma Ageha.