Come down queasy: Aska’s hospital stay no picnic

Josei Seven Sept. 11
Josei Seven Sept. 11

On August 21, Tokyo Metropolitan Police announced the arrest of two suspects, including one organized crime member, for the alleged sale of 100 tablets of MDMA (also known as Ecstasy) to troubled singer Asaka for 500,000 yen.

One week later, the 56-year-old musician plead guilty in the Tokyo District Court to charges of use and possession of stimulant drugs.

The past three months have been rough for the 56-year-old musician, a member of the pop duo Chage and Aska, and, reports Josei Seven (Sept. 11), most people don’t know the half of it.

Aska has been receiving treatment for drug addiction at an isolation ward in a general hospital in Chiba City, Chiba Prefecture. For glimpse of his stay, the magazine speaks with a woman whose husband was hospitalized at the same institution.

When the singer, whose real name is Shigeaki Miyazaki, first arrived at the hospital, he showed obvious symptoms of withdrawal, according to the woman: He shivered while walking through the corridors, one fist clenched and his shoulders pushed upward.

Then, in the middle of August, he started to behave in a strange manner.

“The entrance to the isolation ward has a security camera in operation 24 hours a day,” says the woman. “One day, Aska took a nurse to the room where the footage is monitored. They then started to go through tape over the course of several days showing the area in front of Aska’s room.”

Aska then got hysterical: “Who’s that in my room?!” he started shouting, according to the woman. Naturally, there was nobody present, but he remained persistent, choosing to scatter salt in front of his room in an attempt at purification, much like a sumo wrestler before a match.

“Others in the ward observed that his stage of withdrawal was getting extreme,” says the woman. “They had concerns about him leaving (the hospital).”

The problems for Aska date back to May 17, when officers first arrested the performer and 37-year-old acquaintance Kasumi Tochinai for possessing stimulant drugs at her apartment in Tokyo in April.

Aska and Tochinai
Aska and Kasumi Tochinai

Police served the singer with a fresh arrest warrant on May 27 for using stimulant drugs. During a search of his home, officers found 90 MDMA pills.

On July 22, the trial for Tochinai began at the Tokyo District Court. During the proceedings, she denied the charges against her. Three days later, news outlets revealed that Aska had another girlfriend whom he supplied with drugs.

The source for Josei Seven says that Aska watched the report about “girlfriend #2” in a hospital conference room.

“I didn’t date her!” he apparently screamed at the television.

“Everyone gathered around was just sort of dumbfounded,” says Josei Seven’s source. (K.N.)

Source: “Kakuribyoto no Aska hikoku ‘daini shabu aijin’ dodo ni zekkyo shita,” Josei Seven (Sept. 11)

Note: Brief extracts from Japanese vernacular media in the public domain that appear here were translated and summarized under the principle of “fair use.” Every effort has been made to ensure accuracy of the translations. However, we are not responsible for the veracity of their contents. The activities of individuals described herein should not be construed as “typical” behavior of Japanese people nor reflect the intention to portray the country in a negative manner. Our sole aim is to provide examples of various types of reading matter enjoyed by Japanese.

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