"Hello, bell boy!"

I've only been twice, but the Yayoi-Takehisa Yumeji museum complex is rapidly becoming one of my favorite places in the world. Today a fellow English teacher and I braved the relentless, mind-assaulting ur-cuteness of the NAITOU Rune exhibit. According to the Y-folk, Naitou invented modern Japanese cuteness and girl imagery, with innovations including bigger, more expressive eyes, and boyfriends. I have no idea if he deserves this much credit, but he certainly did draw girls with big eyes and... well, male companions, at least. They weren't very convincing as boyfriends qua boyfriends, especially when across the room they were cavorting in their underpants with each other in a different display.

It took me way too long to figure out that soreiyu (それいゆ), the magazine which Naitou used to bust open the cuteness on postwar Japan, was supposed to be soleil.

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