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Saturday, 11 October 2003

otaku no jinsei ha yabai na!

Esther said it’s my turn to keep the world up to date what’s happening in our life. Ok - I didn’t know that such responsibility would come with posting a few times in her blog but here we go.

Yesterday we watched a nightlong special about japanese über-geeks. I already knew that japanese fandom can seem quite odd to outsiders. What I didn’t know was that even in Japan there’s a whole socially unaccepted subculture of fanboys called Otaku. These people mold their whole life around nothing but a certain aspect of japanese culture. Usually they focus on some fictional character, a pop star, an anime show, videogames or even porn. You might think that this can be compared to what we call geeks or dorks and american anime fans even picked up “otaku” as a positive term. In Japan though it is apparently extremely negative in meaning. Their fanatism is so bad that they totally fall through the cracks and have no social or love life at all.
For example there was an interview with a guy who worshiped a pop star (excuse my ignorance but I can’t remember her name or what’s so special about her). For him that pop star is a godess. He adores her so much that he even disallows himself to even think about any other woman. That’s what I call samurai spirit…

Well, coincidentally I just came by an an article about the “ten geekiest hobbies” posted in Wave Magazine. Before I even read the article I already feared that there will be a close match with my hobbies. To make matters worse they even ranked each hobby in how negatively it affects the participants social and sexual life. Gulp. So let’s see how much of a geek I am. Here’s my personal comment to each hobby on their list:

  1. Comic Books: I don’t own or buy a lot of comics. I love to read Comics though (5/10).
  2. Role Playing Games: I used to play MERP back in the old times. Didn’t touch a pen and paper RPG in years (1/10).
  3. Scrapbooking: I don’t even know what that is… (0/10, looks quite good so far)
  4. Star Wars: Episode 1 sucked balls. Episode 2 got a little better but Star Wars combined with Lego rocks. I give it (6/10).
  5. Vampirism: I never got into Buffy or Angel. I know some people who are into Vampire LARPs though (1/10).
  6. Collectible Card Games: I admit that I love to play Magic. It’s a very cool game. I even own quite some (virtual) cards. It’s tooooo expensive though and I never get to play with my old cards. (7/10)
  7. Everquest: Umm (0/10).
  8. Star Trek: I don’t consider myself a Trekkie but I saw everything except the orginal series. (7/10)
  9. Furries/Plushies: Does a stuffed Totoro count? (0/10)
  10. Live Action Role Playing: Some of my friends are into LARPs. They even have their own con. I never had the guts and ambition (making clothes and stuff) to play with them though. I think I’d like to play an NPC sometime (1/10).

Wait a sec, I’m adding it all up… I guess 70% of people who read this will think I’m a freak. Just 65% will have no sex with me? I think I can live with that.

[Archive Link]  Posted by Michi at 16:34 CET

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