Saturday, March 03, 2007 Japan Story: Gyoza Stadium:

What is it? Well, let me back up a little. You have to understand that I have a particular fondness for weird, dying, low-budget, or otherwise bizarre theme parks / attractions. I've learned that you should always visit these kinds of things when you have the opportunity, because when these kind of places feel like they're not going to last long, they almost certainly aren't. In Vancouver BC, the primary reason we decided to visit the Storyeum — a strange kind of "living museum" where a surprisingly large number of actors sing jaunty musical numbers about Canadian history in a series of elaborately designed underground rooms — was that we could smell that magic, musty odor of over-ambition with a dash of eccentric-millionaire from a mile away. Our particular audience for the experience: eight people. The actors out-numbered us, and to their credit, they gave it their all — it was actually pretty awesome, and I learned that Canada is weird. The Storyeum closed late last year.

So when I heard that Namco — or at least a division the video game giant, fond business partners of Panic — had their own theme park in Japan, it was an insant one-way ticket on the to-do train in my mind.

And that's before I heard about the gyoza.

10:27 PM