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Chronicles of a Self Hating Anime Fan
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24 / M / Seattle
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Posted 1/12/13 , edited 1/12/13
So..this is my first post on a forum in.. -Counts on fingers..- About two years? Cut an old man some slack if I'm not 'mad cool' like you kids say these days. Beware, I may come across pompous but these are my efforts to make fun of myself.

Anyway.. This is something I kind of wanted to get off my chest and see how other people react in a similar situation. In order for me to build proper understanding of my situation, let me explain a couple of things about myself:

I have been an anime fan for a pretty long time. Maybe even forever since I grew up with stuff like Tonari no Totoro and the like ever since I was.. This tall? -Measures something pretty short.- And on top of it all I spent a lot of my youth in martial arts where practice and philosophy was taught, so it was a disciplined and borderline spiritual class (please don't misunderstand. I'm not trying to make myself out to be some crazy bad ass.) Combine that with an anti-social nature (ah..it's getting worse. TToTT) in a small town and you arrive at someone who fails at establishing an identity that syncs with their immediate surroundings. Therefore I supplemented my ignorance of my own culture with a growing interest in Asian culture, specifically Korean and Japanese.

So fast forward more than a decade, and I've attached myself to Japan quite strongly. I only listen to Japanese music, not because "nglish muzak suxx" but because.. I don't even think I know where to learn about my local music anymore. I tend to eat with chopsticks (depending on what I'm eating. I'm not someone who tries to tackle steak and potatoes with chop sticks) and FURTHER STILL - I can really only cook Asian cuisine well. Anything else and I'm relying on recipes and youtube videos.

My 'religion' of choice is Shinto, because I can't identify with dominant monotheistic practices.

I read (translated) Japanese literature.

And more often than not I'm ignorant of current trends that surround me. Do you know how long it took me to catch on to what a Honey Boo Boo is? DO YOU!?

Over the years I've become so distanced from my immediate surroundings that it's hard for me to even figure out a way back.

TL;DR

So imagine my dismay when two things happen:

As a working adult I interact with my co-workers. I consider myself social, but awkward. When people ask what I listen to I find myself dodging the question.

Conversation with a co-worker:

"Y HALO THAR WHAT MUZAK DO YOU LYKE?!"

"Oh. You know, I listen to a little everything.."

"Oh, well, like what?"

"Well, I listen to some rap..some rock.."

"Oh, so do you like (x musician)?"

"Ah..Sorry, I don't know. I like some old school stuff, like Zeebra.."

"Who?"

"Ah..he's a Japa-"

"OH YOU LIKE JPOP HUH? HUHEHEUHHEUHEUHHEH!!!1"


And now I seem to have earned a reputation as being 'that person.' Not that it's a bad thing.. it's kind of funny, if not daunting sometimes. I've become the go-to person for Asian restaurants in our area, for example. What really gets me is when I hear someone refer to me as 'Fasian' to my face or otherwise. For some reason, it just really gets under my skin. I'm not TRYING to be Asian (btw, I'm not.) I'm just trying to be me the only way I know how. TT-TT


On the other hand, there are conversations that are held between me and my Asian friends.

Conversation with Mr. Suzuki:

"Hey, so what's for dinner tonight?"

"Ah.. I was thinking about sukiyaki or okonomiyaki.."

"Where are we going then?"

"I just really wanted to stay in, so I was going to break out the skillet or pot.."

"...I have to have my mom make okonomiyaki for me.."

"..It's kind of easy.."

"What mix do you use?"

"..I make my own.."

"...You're more Asian than I am."


NO I'M NOT! Stop it! Stop it right there! I'm not Asian, I'm not trying to be Asian! Just.. just..stop...;o;


I'm sure there are other people here that have these same issues right? How do you cope?
2509 cr points
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20 / F / Wherever the wind...
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Posted 1/12/13
Wait. Are we talking about being called the "W word" here?
12116 cr points
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24 / M / Seattle
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Posted 1/12/13
More or less. u.u Maybe a little more, maybe a little less..>_o
58239 cr points
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25 / M / Oklahoma
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Posted 1/12/13
I'm not sure I fully grasp the point of the thread here. Are you looking for support, ways of changing by integrating your local culture, or just wanting to share stories?

If you want legitimate advice I can provide it, which more or less has most people considering me a well rounded individual unless they try coming into my home and seeing racks of anime DVD/BR and merch.
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27 / M / Gotham City
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Posted 1/12/13
Just do what makes you comfortable and happy. The biggest struggle is the one with the inner self man.

If your inner self perceives personal slights, or annoyances, or doubts, it'll translate to your situation now - struggling with accepting how people view you. If your inner self is at peace, and is in harmony with you, then regardless of what people say you can still be happy.

I say disregard it and be happy with who you are. Don't exert effort to try and change how your coworkers and friends judge and perceive you. The more you try the more they'll resist and the more their image of you becomes entrenched in their minds.

So what if you're a white guy who enjoys eating/cooking Asian food and listening to Asian music?

Is an Asian person born in America, who likes to eat/cook American foods, watch American movies/tv shows, listen to Carly Rae Jepsen trying to be white? Hell no, it's just something they grow up with, identify with, and exposed to so they like it.

Don't question yourself. Haters gonna hate.
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21 / M / Amegakure
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Posted 1/13/13
Just sacrifice them to the almighty dark lord.
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20 / F / Wherever the wind...
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Posted 1/13/13

Winterfells wrote:

Just do what makes you comfortable and happy. The biggest struggle is the one with the inner self man.

If your inner self perceives personal slights, or annoyances, or doubts, it'll translate to your situation now - struggling with accepting how people view you. If your inner self is at peace, and is in harmony with you, then regardless of what people say you can still be happy.

I say disregard it and be happy with who you are. Don't exert effort to try and change how your coworkers and friends judge and perceive you. The more you try the more they'll resist and the more their image of you becomes entrenched in their minds.

So what if you're a white guy who enjoys eating/cooking Asian food and listening to Asian music?

Is an Asian person born in America, who likes to eat/cook American foods, watch American movies/tv shows, listen to Carly Rae Jepsen trying to be white? Hell no, it's just something they grow up with, identify with, and exposed to so they like it.

Don't question yourself. Haters gonna hate.


^This speaks the truth.

You really can't control what other people think so might as well stop stressing about it and enjoy what you enjoy.
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25 / M / Oklahoma
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Posted 1/13/13

Winterfells wrote:

Just do what makes you comfortable and happy. The biggest struggle is the one with the inner self man.

If your inner self perceives personal slights, or annoyances, or doubts, it'll translate to your situation now - struggling with accepting how people view you. If your inner self is at peace, and is in harmony with you, then regardless of what people say you can still be happy.

I say disregard it and be happy with who you are. Don't exert effort to try and change how your coworkers and friends judge and perceive you. The more you try the more they'll resist and the more their image of you becomes entrenched in their minds.

So what if you're a white guy who enjoys eating/cooking Asian food and listening to Asian music?

Is an Asian person born in America, who likes to eat/cook American foods, watch American movies/tv shows, listen to Carly Rae Jepsen trying to be white? Hell no, it's just something they grow up with, identify with, and exposed to so they like it.

Don't question yourself. Haters gonna hate.


I think this advice will work for some people, but I don't know how many or if it will for OP. I imagine it to be very hard to be at peace with yourself if you constantly feel isolated, shunned, ridiculed, and the like in your living environment. Equally, as social beings the inability to share thoughts and concepts through regular interaction can be bad for one's mental health.

Rather, I think OPs problem isn't the fact that they enjoy Asian media and food, but rather they lack the range of experiences outside of it making them seem rather shallow and single minded. Even if you enjoy the Asian items more, I would be surprised to find someone that absolutely hates every form in consumable of their own culture and with it little ability to find common ground with the majority of peers. Even being aware of what you dislike about your culture can be common ground with the ability to find others of similar interests or views.
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24 / M / Seattle
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Posted 1/13/13
Ah, sorry yeah I really wasn't clear. I'm actually pretty happy with who I am and where I'm at in life. I was actually just curious how other people deal with similar circumstances in their life. This was ever supposed to come across as mildly comical (melodramatic title?) but I may have overplayed the drama a bit..

@zinjashike: It's pretty much the same story for me. I come across as extremely well rounded and relatively normal until people either come over to my place and they start asking more in depth questions about my preferred media.

@Winterfells: I'm black. *cough* Or maybe I'm a woman?![/beingajerk]

Ultimately, from my perspective the mild amount of frustration I experience largely comes from pride in who I have made myself over the years being misconstrued as something else. Maybe this is similar with how people from Ireland feel when people call them Scottish?[/morehumor] And it has led to a lot of awesome banter in the work place.

So..yeah. Sorry for being unclear. xD

@saksiss: That..might be me? Well, then you start getting into theology..and that gets complicated.
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24 / M / Seattle
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Posted 1/13/13

zinjashike I think this advice will work for some people, but I don't know how many or if it will for OP. I imagine it to be very hard to be at peace with yourself if you constantly feel isolated, shunned, ridiculed, and the like in your living environment. Equally, as social beings the inability to share thoughts and concepts through regular interaction can be bad for one's mental health.

Rather, I think OPs problem isn't the fact that they enjoy Asian media and food, but rather they lack the range of experiences outside of it making them seem rather shallow and single minded. Even if you enjoy the Asian items more, I would be surprised to find someone that absolutely hates every form in consumable of their own culture and with it little ability to find common ground with the majority of peers. Even being aware of what you dislike about your culture can be common ground with the ability to find others of similar interests or views.


Oh, that does hit kind of close to home though - now that you mention it. I doubt they're found all that often in the anime community anymore but the last thing I want is to be viewed as one of 'those' anime fans that renounce everything outside of Japan (and/or sometimes/never/always [South] Korea) and refuse to indulge in other forms of entertainment.

I mean, damn do I love takoyaki but I'll totally nom some fried green tomatoes as well.

So it's that fact *that* element of my interests could *possibly* *maybe* or *not* be misconstrued. That's one thing I still struggle with and it probably stems from personal bias if we want to get all deep about it. Hmm~
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25 / M / Oklahoma
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Posted 1/13/13

Ama_no_Kagaseo wrote:


zinjashike I think this advice will work for some people, but I don't know how many or if it will for OP. I imagine it to be very hard to be at peace with yourself if you constantly feel isolated, shunned, ridiculed, and the like in your living environment. Equally, as social beings the inability to share thoughts and concepts through regular interaction can be bad for one's mental health.

Rather, I think OPs problem isn't the fact that they enjoy Asian media and food, but rather they lack the range of experiences outside of it making them seem rather shallow and single minded. Even if you enjoy the Asian items more, I would be surprised to find someone that absolutely hates every form in consumable of their own culture and with it little ability to find common ground with the majority of peers. Even being aware of what you dislike about your culture can be common ground with the ability to find others of similar interests or views.


Oh, that does hit kind of close to home though - now that you mention it. I doubt they're found all that often in the anime community anymore but the last thing I want is to be viewed as one of 'those' anime fans that renounce everything outside of Japan (and/or sometimes/never/always [South] Korea) and refuse to indulge in other forms of entertainment.


Oh, they still exist out there - sad bunch they are.

If you're being viewed as an overall well rounded person, able to hold a normal conversation about some constructs of the society you live in for the most part you're probably where many are - it's just a hobby of yours that you enjoy which is perfectly fine.
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24 / M / Seattle
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Posted 1/13/13
I'm able to hold a humorous and witty conversation, but hardly normal. I may have exaggerated somewhat when I said 'exceptionally well rounded.' It may be a little closer to 'eccentric,' but that's okay too.
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34 / M / OK, USA
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Posted 1/13/13
Ah, good to hear that you're happy with where you're at in life, I wasn't sure how to respond at first. I cosplay (see pic <--), and had some coworkers that tried to give me a hard time about that. I shrugged them off and had fun on Halloween and such. My anime DVD set is.. large, to say the least, and I can make sushi and such, though I've never tried okonomiyaki. You've given me a goal to learn something new this year!

Anyway, some workplaces were better than others - I've been in places where a furry paved the way to me wearing 'funny outfits', or where they were more like drunken fratboys who wanted to find something to make fun of whenever they could (I mean that literally, in one of them half the guys went to college together and often came in either drunk or hung over). Thankfully, the more accepting workplace was the first I was at, so by the time I hit the others, I was better able to shrug them off.
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24 / M / Seattle
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Posted 1/13/13

MakotoKamui wrote:

Ah, good to hear that you're happy with where you're at in life, I wasn't sure how to respond at first. I cosplay (see pic <--), and had some coworkers that tried to give me a hard time about that. I shrugged them off and had fun on Halloween and such. My anime DVD set is.. large, to say the least, and I can make sushi and such, though I've never tried okonomiyaki. You've given me a goal to learn something new this year!

Anyway, some workplaces were better than others - I've been in places where a furry paved the way to me wearing 'funny outfits', or where they were more like drunken fratboys who wanted to find something to make fun of whenever they could (I mean that literally, in one of them half the guys went to college together and often came in either drunk or hung over). Thankfully, the more accepting workplace was the first I was at, so by the time I hit the others, I was better able to shrug them off.



My bad, like I said.. I went overboard with the melodrama.. n.n;

I think more than anything I ultimately lucked out. I used to live in a really small town, but these days I'm in the Seattle area. Needless to say the local culture in more diverse. Despite the fact that in most instances I view myself as being awkward I can usually be pretty witty without missing a beat so anytime someone tries to give me a hard time for my fandom I just turn it into banter instead. I've made pretty good friends that way.. Granted, they still don't understand a lick of what I'm talking about.

Ah, since we all seem to have exchanged at this point I'll throw this out there: My anime collection is actually pretty modest. Where I seem to have done well for myself is literature and music. Since I'm a bit of a neat freak I don't usually do a lot of merchandise (too much dust) and what I do own is typically subtle.

If you've done savory pancakes before, or Chinese pancakes, it's basically the same thing. Check out Cooking with Dog on Youtube if you want some tips.

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34 / M / OK, USA
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Posted 1/13/13

Ama_no_Kagaseo wrote:

Ah, since we all seem to have exchanged at this point I'll throw this out there: My anime collection is actually pretty modest. Where I seem to have done well for myself is literature and music. Since I'm a bit of a neat freak I don't usually do a lot of merchandise (too much dust) and what I do own is typically subtle.

If you've done savory pancakes before, or Chinese pancakes, it's basically the same thing. Check out Cooking with Dog on Youtube if you want some tips.



While my DVD collection is large (mostly bought pre-Crunchyroll, but I tend to add to it slowly even still), most of my merch is either self made props for my cosplays, a few wallscrolls that clean up pretty easily, and maybe 3-4 figurines that I thought were particularly interesting. I'm a reader as well, so most of my walls not near the DVD player are taken up by very full bookshelves, it seems...

I'll check that YouTube poster out, thanks for the tip! Maybe I'll have some interesting breakfast later today.
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