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Fandom 0

Fandom: The Ultimate Security Blanket

Note:
The following is a text version from episode 65 of my friend and I podcast,The Swarthy Nerd.  It has been edited for this blog.  You can listen to the episode in full by click the link above.

Please enjoy!

*****

We all need a sense of security: may it be for home defense, personal space, finances, etc. Security allows us to have a sense of safety and the confidence that no harm will come to us.  With security, we won’t be able to subscribe to ill thoughts and of being violated, unprotected, and insecure; as long as our  security doesn’t get compromised. Fandom in nerd culture could be considering a form of security.

Nerds use their fandom to protect themselves from outsiders and anyone else who may try to enter a fandom will ill intent.  Acting as a security device, a nerd’s fandom can serve to help one escape the harsh realities of the world (crime, violence, systematic white supremacy, etc.).  While using fandom to escape and defend you from this world has some benefits, there are faults to relying on it.

To quote the late film critic Robert Ebert in his review of the 2009 film Fanboys,

“Extreme fandom may serve as a security blanket for the socially inept, who use its extreme structure as a substitute for social skills. If you are Luke Skywalker and she is Princess Leia, you already know what to say to each other, which is so much safer than having to ad-lib it. Your fannish obsession is your beard. If you know absolutely all the trivia about your cubbyhole of pop culture, it saves you from having to know anything about anything else. That’s why it’s excruciatingly boring to talk to such people: They’re always asking you questions they know the answer to.”

Harsh, but truthful.

In today’s episode of the Swathy Nerd Podcast, we will break down the security blanket that is fandom, why lonely loser nerds use fandom to escape from reality, and why it’s too easy to use somebody else work to build your own sense of self and security.

PART ONE
HOW FANDOM SERVE  US

Fandom as a security blanket serves us through three means:
1. Creates a culture
2 A sense of self
3. A sense of protection

It’s no secret that most nerds don’t fit into other groups due to their quirky, obsessive nature. They (usually) cannot relate to mainstream topics such as the latest celebrity gossip, sports, pop music, and so forth.  Therefore, they seek to find comradely with like minded peers: building a culture and support system around their love for pop art and culture.  With this, a nerd could use this newfound comradeship to form social circles that otherwise would be “impossible” to obtain outside of using pop culture reference and fan familiarity

Less energy and effort can be exhausted on staying within one’s comfort zone. Why expand your mind and broaden horizons by going out of your way to do something new and meet people outside your normal social circle when you can use your endless supply of The Office quotes with those who too quote form overrated T.V. series? You don’t have to think on the fly like a smooth, charming player if you remind within known topics.

However, there’s one major drawback to relying on that trick: Things will get boring quick.

How long will it take for the other person you’re talking to until they wind up getting tired of your pop culture references?  Why do you refuse to let go of a topic that nobody is interested in other than to stroke your own ego?  People are drawn towards those who know about more than one topic – especially if it’s outside the realm of pop culture.  Not everyone loves and operate on the same level of stableness and security you run on (pop culture).  Eventually, you’ll need to disrupt that sense of security if you want to attach others to you.

Nerds believe that their hobbies, attractions, and interests are small bits of the larger picture of who they are as a person; a sort of sense of self to say.  There’s some truth to this. I do believe that what you’re into have an impact and reflect on your personality and psyche.

Example: A Black nerd may relate to the comic series X-MEN due to the elements of racism within the series.   That black nerd understands to the X-MEN being treated like outsiders because of his racial background. They might collect figurines of characters such as Storm, Gambit, or Wolverine because to that Black Nerd, that’s a form of self-empowerment.

It’s not to say that these nerds couldn’t tap into their spirit for self-empowerment nor do they don’t, BUT, you must admit that it’s goofy for a grown ass man to be empowered by fiction and fiction alone.  Of course, it’s much easier to use somebody else’s work to empower yourself than to get off your ass and work on yourself and your purpose to empower yourself without external influences.

Finally, fandom creates a sort of protection.  Most nerds (who don’t have a pair of balls/ovaries), have been bullied for their interests.  Therefore, they create walls and barriers to protect themselves from outsiders.  Other nerds have struggle with dealing with real world issues, or dealt with hardships in life (child abuse, absent parent, social struggles, etc.), so their fandom is the perfect tool for defense.  It’s all-to-common to hear a female felt empowered by magical girl series such as Sailor Moon and Card Captor Sakura in her troubling youth.

We all heard tales of men (who only watch entry level Shounen anime) whose favorite anime is Dragon Ball Z because somehow, a cartoon show them what an alpha male is supposed to look like.  They may not actually put in the work to be as alpha as the fictional characters they admire (hell, they even hate on anime fans who don’t live vicariously through shounen anime and put in hard work to become greater than their fictional icons).

They rather live through their heroes than to  like them.

 

PART TWO

DISRUPTING SECURITY

Let’s visit an earlier statement from this “essay”: “Not everyone loves and operate on the same level of stableness and security you run on (pop culture).  Eventually, you’ll need to disrupt that sense of security if you want to attach others to you. ” Sooner or later, security will get violated.  It will get disrupted it; causing you to be on edge.

We’ve seen this with COVID-19 forcing pop culture conventions to cancel their events this year.  Stores catering to nerd culture, such as Japan LA and Uncle Hugo’s Science Fiction Bookstore  have been torched by protesters seeking justice for the racial murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and countless mores.  Nerdy brands have shown solidity with Black Americans (if they’re being sincere or just doing this for money is up for debate).   2020 has proven that you can’t use your fandom as a shield to protect yourself.

You will need to embrace that. Hiding from it not only makes you childish – it makes you weak and a coward.

We don’t even need the onslaught of chaos that 2020 given us so far to destroy your sense of fanboy security.  Remember: a madman in July 2019 decided to burn down Kyoto Animation.  You know, the same anime studio that produces media to help keep otakus and weeaboos globally distracted.

You couldn’t go anywhere online or offline without being reminded that Kyoto Animation was burned down and 35+ of their employees were murdered. This is no means a form of disrespect towards those who lost their lives in such a senseless way, but it’s a grim reminder that your distractions can be taken away from you.

Look, what I’m telling you guy is this: you have to accept the fact your hobbies and passions will never protect you in the long run.  Reality always has a way to rear its ugly head into your fantasy, la-la land (or even in the real world itself). We’ve heard stories of Black nerds going to nerdy conventions thinking they can escape racism for a few days only to experience it by racist white nerds. You always have these racist white nerds who will attack Black nerds for cosplaying outside their race or simply being at a convention.

My fellow black nerds: if you think your geekiness will override your Blackness, you are fucking retarded and deserve a Negro wake up call.

Logging onto Animal Crossing or whatever the latest distraction is won’t fix nor lessen your issues. How the hell you’re more concerned about some fictional tanuki motherfucker breaking your kneecaps if you don’t pay them rent, and yet, you haven’t pay rent to your real landlord?

It’s so wild that we have people out here who have all the courage in the world to solve the problems of fictional characters, but somehow, they can’t be bothered to fix their own.  Guess it’s easier for some socially awkward nerd fuck to solve worse girl Futaba from Persona 5 or worse girl Bernadetta from Fire Emblem: Three Houses social disorder issues than for them to solve their own to better themselves as a person (it’s also easier for fans of those two to smell like corn chips, hot dog water, and ass like those two shut-in losers as well, but that’s for another essay).

In conclusion, I say this: You’re not Linus from Charlie Brown.  Stop relying on such a pathetic security blanket such as your precious little fandom geek shit to guard you from the realities of this world.   You need to grow beyond it so that you can have more friends or whatever.  Learn to embrace that this world is horrible and bad things will happen. It’s not to say that you should be horrible in kind, but you have to deal with it to grow as a better person.

You cannot escape life.

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The Swarthy Nerd Podcast
A Black nerd empowerment podcast where Black nerds (well, all nerds, but Black first and foremost) can get together and talk freely about nerd culture while also acknowledging systematic white supremacy and racism in the nerd and Eastern otaku fandoms. Every Tuesday join @superlostfan108 and @weebtrashyuki the founders of http://www.swarthynerd.com for there very informative podcast talking about all things nerdy. No desperate boot licking self hating negus who were never accepted by Black norimes for being too weird for  their love of anime and comic books by the Black community allowed. Go drink bleach.

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Fire Emblem 0

A Low-Brow Ode to Fire Emblem Part One: Melee, An Holy War, And My Racism Towards Folks With Blue Hair

In celebration of the 30th anniversary of the Fire Emblem series (with the release of the first game of the series, “Fire Emblem: Dark Dragon and Sword of Light released on April 20th, 1990), I will be doing a bit of a low-brow, personal “retrospective” of the games I played from the series. Join me as I talk about my first experience with the series through my first and second favorite Fire Emblem game: “Genealogy of the Holy War”.

[Warning: Foul language, low-brow commentary, and crude remarks  on the characters of  Fire Emblem.  Go watch some boring elitist cornballs with no real talent who think talking about video games on YouTube  is a real, viable job on YouTube if you want a serious retrospective on the series]

As with many of my peers who grew up playing video games throughout the 90s, I played such classics from that era such as Super Mario World., Street Fighter II, Sonic, Gran TurismoFinal Fantasy, and Pokemon to name a few.  It was thanks to the 1996 capsule monster catching RPG that I would find love within the RPG genre.  As my first RPG, I loved the idea of capturing and raising monsters to dominate the world of Pokemon  Blue.  Later, around the early 2000s, I was introduced to two of my top favorite RPGs of all time: Paper Mario and the original Final Fantasy 3 on the Famicom; which happened to be my first Final Fantasy game.

(For those wondering how and why Final Fantasy 3 was my first FF game: grew up in Nintendo dominate household and my Pentecostal mother thought RPGs were the devil because Christians, especially Black old-school Baby Boomer Christians,  live in fear of thinking for themselves and questing religion; so emulation was the way for me.)

I loved the idea of taking a traditional  2D-platformer Mario game and reimagine it as a turned- based RPG spanning across the Mushroom Kingdom as Mario, once again, must save Princess Peach from the clutches of Bowser. As for FF3, the 8-bit charm of four young orphaned youths being the chosen ones of legend to save the world from darkness. While both games’ story could be consider “basic” to some (which, to a degree, they’re sort of right especially on FF3’s front), I enjoyed and loved them.

I would continue my RPG journey as the early 2000s progressed with classics such as Chrono Trigger, Shin Megami Tensei II, Final Fantasy IV, V, VI, and finally VII (mostly 16-bit emulation because, again, scared Pentecostal Christian mother).  They told such amazing stories of their worlds.  Time travel.  Nuclear holocaust. Tales of hope, life, and death. Yet, despite all of that, there was something missing from those games. Something that I could say in confidence would impact me for life.

Don’t get me wrong: it was a shock to see teen pregnancy used as a narrative theme in Final Fantasy VI with realism as Katarin struggles with the fact of becoming a teen mother in an world of ruin. Katarin, along with her lover and baby’s fathers Duane, the oldest member of the destroyed village of Mobliz in the World of Ruin. Chrono Trigger made me thought about my own existence in the universe as I watched Crono and crew ponder about how the universe and its inhibitors became to be during the campfire scene.

chrno_trigger_campfire_scene_large
Chrono Trigger campfire scene

 

Yet – those things didn’t fulfill a certain need of true, down-to-earth realism.  I needed something more grounded. Something that would make such sense to me as a young man. Something that I could relate to with absolute:

Super Smash Bros. Melee. for the Nintendo GameCube!

2001:

Through a summer school event, I managed to get my hands on a copy of a Nintendo GameCube demo disc for the PC.  Featured on the disc were video demos of upcoming launch titles for the GameCube: including Luigi Mansion, Star Fox Adventures, NBA Courtside 2002, and of course, Super Smash Bros. Melee.  Super Smash Bros. 64, the game prior to Melee, felt dwarfed compared to the raw graphical power and scale of Melee. I was aware of and hyped for Melee being created by Nintendo through elementary schoolyard conversations and magazines.  Seeing a demo of the preceded flawless game’s action and mass scale drove my desire to get a GameCube and Super Smash Bros. Melee for the 2001 holidays season.

So, did I eventually get Super Smash Bros. Melee for the Nintendo GameCube and the GameCube for Christmas of 2001 like every other good little boy and good little girl?

Of course fucking not!  My parents went bankrupt after buying a new house, having to bury my mother’s parents who both died a month apart from each other, and finally — said new house’s kitchen catching on fire; thus, causing us to  living in a downtown hotel then a temporary luxury apartment because we all have shit lungs (asthma). I was lucky to get a DVD/VCR combo for Christmas with a few DVDs.

melee

 

2004:

For three years, I had to live the Melee (and by proxy, the early 2000s gaming) life vicariously. One day, while working on a paper on the history of video games in 8th grade (2004), I discovered  the MIDI (Musical Insturmental Digital Interface) video game vgmusic.com. Musically inclined fans could upload their recreation, remixes, and close-to-the-original MIDI files for the nerdy gaming massive to indulge in.  Being curious about how the music of Melee sounded, I led myself to the Super Smash Bros. Melee section which had an impressed library of fan made songs from the game.

Scrolling through, there was one track that caught my eye: Hyrule Temple: Fire Emblem“I don’t remember a Fire Emblem in Majora’s Mask, OOT, nor Zelda II. Maybe I missed something like a secret item named ‘Fire Emblem’ when I had played those games.” I ponder to myself.

Curious, I clicked the link to the song.

Four taps on the artificial hi-hats rang out followed by Latin-like horns, a heavy bassline, and drawn out bass strings and horns building up to the meat of the song.

“Okay, did Link went to Mexico and fight Zorro in a Zelda game because this song sounds super Mexican as hell.”.  Rather than do the incredibly smart and not racist thing and Google search Fire Emblem (because I was too busy googling Princess Daisy, Terra Branford , Ayeka Jurai, and Sailor Pluto hentai images and doujins) I just assumed that it was some a weird Zelda thing.

 

Months later, after my parents recovered from their bankruptcy, they gifted me a Nintendo GameCube for Christmas (they couldn’t find Melee in any store sadly).  No worries.  I was given a Blockbuster gift card by a family member for Christmas, so I decided to rent Melee the day after Christmas.  Wanting to know how to unlock everything, I went online for answers when I came across two Nintendo characters whom which I’ve never heard of: Roy and Marth.

Again,  rather than doing the smart thing and Google search “Roy and Marth” (I was googling how to torrent anime illegally this time instead), I decided to play Melee for my answers. After defeating the original 13 fighters, I was alerted with the “Challenger Approach” alarm.  A shadowy figured appeared with a male wielding a sword.  We’re transported to Kirby’s stage with me wondering who I was going to face off against.

Then, that familiar Mexican sounding melody starts to play.

“Okay, this song sounds ever more Mexican than before now I’m hearing it how it meant to be heard.  Why is this white boy speaking Japanese to some  Mexican sword fighting music? Is this Zorro’s cousin? Kirby’s friend?”

After defeating Zorro’s half Japanese/Half Mexican cousin from Kirby (I assumed) I’m greeted with the following message:

“Direct from Fire Emblem, it’s Marth, the swordsman supreme!”

“Okay, what’s Fire Emblem, who’s this Marth dude, and why he’s a white boy speaking Japanese to Mexican music?”

Upon unlocking Marth, I ran him through his Classic Mode route to unlock Roy. Fought Roy.  Figured out why I thought Fire Emblem was Zelda related after a year (you fight Roy in Hyrule’s Ruins because I guess Roy was sleeping with Zelda behind Link’s back after she slept with Gannondorf). Whoop Roy’s ass and got Marth’s trophy. Wanting to learn more about Marth, I deiced to check out his trophy.

MARTH

            The betrayed prince of the Kingdom of Altea, the blood of the hero Anri flows in Marth’s veins.  He was forced into exile when the kingdom of Dolua invaded Altea.  Then, wielding his divine Falchion, he led a revolt and defeated the dark dragon Medeus. Afterwards, Altea was annihilated by King Hardin of Akanea.

Fire Emblem
JAPAN ONLY”

“Wait, he saved his kingdom only to have it annihilated by another king? So, a Nintendo hero failed at saving the day for once? That’s interesting.” Reading Marth’s bio deepened my curiosity towards Fire Emblem.  “Why was Marth forced into exile? Who betrayed him? How did he escape it?  Who’s Medeus and Hardin and how did they manage to destroy his kingdom?”

There was only one way to find out: download Fire Emblem through emulation.  But,  which one?  Visiting my preferred emulation site at the time, Emuparadise, I sought answers through the form of three Fire Emblem games: Mystery of the Crest (FE3), Genealogy of the Holy War (FE4), and Thrica 776 (FE5).

First Try: Mystery of the Emblem

fe3_title_screen

The game boots up with a shield with five circular groves and a flame crested embedded in the middle while a trumpet and French horn fanfare plays for a few seconds. Next, I’m treated to a tapestry with scrambled text. However, the imagery of men burned alive by dragons, sages praying to the heavens, a god armed with a mighty sword and shield descending to earth from the heavens to slay a dragon, and humans giving praise to their savior to a medieval musical motif told the tale for me.

Following, the intro ends with three strikes of lighting; causing the screen to flash. A known fanfare plays as the words “FIRE EMBLEM: MYSTERY OF THE EMBLEM” fades into the foreground as the Falchion pieces through the text.  Finally, I’m introduced to the playable classes and their stats through the game’s attract mode.

Due to the state of the game’s translation, the pre-chapter’s screens were an unreadable mess (a most common issue of Fire Emblem early fan translations days). For all I could had known, this could had been Roy’s game, which I would had been cool with, but I wanted to know Marth’s story.

Skipping past the mess of the “translation”, the game starts.

Axe-men swarming a lone island: pilaving and killing.  A young woman on a Pegasus flies away from the carnage to a castle.  It is here I’m introduced to Fire Emblem’s first ever characters: Jeigan/Jagan, Ceada/Shiida, and the poster boy of the series: The legendary Prince Mars!

“Yo, who the FUCK is Mars? Where’s Marth?” I asked myself in confusion.  I mean, he had blue hair like Marth. Wears a tiara like Marth.  Look like a chick like Marth. But, he was clearly Mars. Not Marth.  Disappointed (and utterly unaware that Mars is Marth and the translator took the Marusu name too literal), I stopped playing I FE3 and booted up FE4.

Prince_Mars
But MAAAAAAARRRRRRSSSSS!

Second Try: FE4 (or, my true first Fire Emblem experience)

fe4_box_art_full

 

Immediately, I’m blown away by audio/visual presentation. While the opening text aren’t a jumbled mess unlike the “translation patch” of Mystery of the Emblem, they were in Japanese; a language which (at the time), I lacked understanding of. Regardless, I could understand the story though the art and sound.

Dreadful music plays as the red and black hellfire serves as the background while mighty warriors and fearsome dragons engage each other in brutal combat.  Twelve flames, representing the twelve  holy gods of Jugdral surrounding a lone tower. As the music reaches a peak and fades out,  A dragon of darkness and a dragon of light entangled in a fierce battle  and the screen goes black. Silence. Then, a golden wheel fades in with slow strings building up. The wheel is surrounded by glistering weapons in a celestial blue shade before flying off.

Finally, this specular ends with the Japanese Fire Emblem logo proudly appearing as the theme of the series plays in vigorous pride: as if it was an anthem for a militaristic nation.

Even if this wasn’t Marth’s game and even if I lacked the knowledge to understand the Japanese language, the ominous scene displayed for me alongside with the introduction of the actors and players of the world of FE4, I wanted to dive deep into the blood soaked tale of Jugdral.

After the marvelous introduction, I created a new file, got hip to the story of Jugdral thus far, and proceeded to play.

“Finally! That’s Mart- no, who’s the hell is Sigurd and why does he looks like he could be Marth’s older cousin? If that’s Marth’s cousin maybe Marth will show up in this game.” I proceed to play FE4; impressed by the scale of the map compared to FE3’s Book 1 first’s map.  FE4’s first map felt like a long-standing war was about to take place while FE3’s first book seemed like a meek, short skirmish.  In a way, this set the tone of the overarching theme of FE4’s maps: large armies clashing with one another non-stop.

Needless to say, this was going to be a long, uphill battle –and I was going to love it.  By that detail alone at was then that I knew that not only Genealogy of the Holy War was going to be something special for me, but the Fire Emblem series in general.

*****

Three turns passed.  The blue hair axe dude, Lex, wasn’t Marth.  The other blue hair guy, Finn, wasn’t Marth neither. At this point, I realized two things:

1. I’m racist against blue hair mid-90s anime-inspired  fantasy characters.
2. This wasn’t Marth’s game.

In any case, the first few minutes of gameplay impressed me. How should I  move my units?  Which weapon is best against the enemy’s?  Should I keep Arden guarding the castle or should I be bold and reckless by leaving the castle defenseless?  Midir wasn’t a girl? Azel have a thing for cute young nuns and so do I.

Hooked, I spent an entire weekend getting through the first three chapters of the game (Birth of the Holy Knight, Maiden of the Spirit Forest¸ and Disturbance in Augstira). By the time I reached Chapter 2, I realized something: I suck.   Ethlyn (Sigurd’s sister) got wounded, so these left the game alongside her husband, Quan: causing me to lose two units at once.

I accidently killed Ayra with Alec and my dumbass saved my game after the fact.  I also got Jamke killed because Adean, the priestess whom was supposed to talk to him so he could join your cause, was at the other side of the map. I made Azel kill him.  But, it didn’t matter.  All it matter was that I was having fun with the game and I kept at it.

Why?

Well first, I simply fell in love with the game’s story.  Who would had known that Sigurd  recusing his friend Aidean from the savages of Verdane was actually a part of a much more diabolical plot orchestrated by the underground cult, The Loptr Church and their leader, Manfory to control the world.

Manfory was the man running the show behind the scenes in an attempt to find the last two surviving decedents of a twisted, dark, demonic dragon god (Lopotsu) in order to revive said dark dragon to plunge the world into disarray, death, destruction, and darkness.  Using his pull and promise of power to politicians throughout the land, Manfory was able to install his plan of bringing the world into darkness.

Second, as a teenager, I wasn’t one for politics. It was a topic that bored me to no end. Yet, Genealogy of the Holy War opened my eyes to how brutal and ruthless politics can be. No. Inferior words such as brutal and ruthless are understatements.  Cutthroat fits better.   I was filled with disgust with Chagall killing his own father, King Imuka, to gain power in Agustria.  I took note at how one set of dukes and lords of  Agustira  bid their time as Sigurd cross blade against the other dukes and lords of their land.  Levin’s uncle was willing to kill him and his mother if it meant controlling their nation.

(As Leptor told Sigurd: “Politics is all about power!)

Now, let it be known that politics alone wasn’t the sole reason why I fell in love with Genealogy of the Holy War despite it being the driving force behind why I loved the game.  The countless tragedies after tragedies that transpired throughout Sigurd’s tale got me as well.  To understand where I’m coming from, let’s go deeper into what I mean by this.

Towards the end of Chapter 1 (Maiden of the Spirit Forest) we’re treated with a touch of “love at first sight” story narrative.  Upon conquering Marpha Castle, Sigurd encounters the beautiful and alluring maiden, Deidre, being harassed by a brigand.  After running the thug off, Sigurd and Deidre exchange a few words; with Sigurd being shocked that Deidre knows his name (through Aiden) and admitting that he’s everything  she imagine him to be. Sigurd ask for her name, which Deidre asks for his pardon for not revealing it before running off loves struck.

Curious about her (and not being able to shake off the feelings of love) , Sigurd asks a local elder about her.   The elder informs Sigurd of Deidre’s name, background, and warns Sigurd not to engage in any sort of relationship with Deidre; least disaster shall befall upon the world if she left the forest and found love. Not wanting to believe in such superstitions, Sigurd sets out to find Deidre. They encounter one another and admit that they had fallen for each other…

…And like any good woman and man who fall for each other upon a chance, first meeting, they both fucked later that night. This isn’t me being lowbrow (for once): that scene is in the official Fire Emblem 4 manga written and drawn by Mitsuki Oosawa.  Deidre totally fucks on the first date  (must be due to of all those years of living a sheltered life).

sigurd_embraces_diadora
Without context, this scene can be taken completely wrong…

 

Anyway, after conquering the Kingdom and Verdane, Sigurd and Deidre got married.  From their marriage, Sigurd started to change.  His sister, Ethlyn, notes how much Sigurd changed thanks to Deidre.  He’s no longer a slob.  His hot-headed attitude has all but disappeared.  He became more upbeat. From their love and marriage came their first and only son, Celice, whom they both loved dearly.

Sigurd was happy.
Deirdre was happy.

And then, Chapter 3 hits – hard.

After receiving news of Sigurd subduing Madino Castle, Deidre decides to leave their army’s home castle to check on her husband.  Despite pleas from Shanan (Prince of Issac, his backstory on why he’s in Sigurd’s army  is a tad long for this post for me to explain) to ensure that Deidre do not leave the castle as per Sigurd’s request, Deidre leaves; assuring Shanan that she’ll only be but just a second. As Deidre walks outside, she is attacked by Manfory, brainwashed, and taken away by the dastardly villain.

(Keep in mind: Sigurd is prepping to engage in combat against his own best friend, Eldigan)

After subduing Evans Castle, Sigurd is alerted by Shanan that Deidre went missing (in the manga version, Shanan engage in combat against Manfory and fails to rescue Deidre). Sigurd, still stressed out due to discovering the beheaded body of Eldigan in Silvali Castle, sets out to find Deidre.

To worsen matters, Sigurd hears that he and his father Vylon are accused of murdering Prince Kurth of Grannvale  (in truth, Vylon’s rivals, Lombard and Leptor, murdered the prince as an attempt to frame Vylon and take Castle Chaply from him).

Sigurd and company are forced to flee to the faraway frigid mountain lands of Silesse. Despite his justified anger/desires to storm Grannvale and expose Lombard and Leptor for their crimes, Sigurd is forced to resolve the civil conflict of Sileese while living as a refugee.

Once the civil conflict in Sileese subsides, Sigurd sets off to Granvale to combat against Leptor and Lombard. He revives his family heirloom, the Holy Tyfring from his father, who has been morality wounded by Lombard’s squad.  Sigurd is helpless as his dad dies in his arms and promises to rain wrath and revenge upon Lombard and Reptor for their crimes against the Chaply family and the land of Grannvall. Keeping to his promise,  Sigurd successfully slew Lombard and set his sights against Reptor and his unit.

During this time, Quan and his Ethlyn, along with Leonster Lance units, are to aid Sigurd and his army.  However, King Tribant (introduced in Chapter 3) ambushes their squad: killing them and leaving behind no survivors sans Cuan and his Ethlyn’s 3 year old child, Altena. Sigurd hears of this news and is devastated by yet another tragic event in his life.

Following, Sigurd eventually take the battle to Leptor, effortlessly defeating him with the help of his army.  Sigurd is greeted by Arvis’ aide, Aida, who tells him that Arvis and Kurth’s father knew Sigurd and his father weren’t involved in Prince Kurth’s death.  This relives Sigurd, a man who for the past two years dealt with soul-crushing pain.  For once, Sigurd is able to take a break and repay his allies  for their work.

Yet, all isn’t what they may seem.

While Sigurd and company are welcomed to Belhalla by Arvis in a faux celebration party, Arvis reveals to Sigurd that everything that has transpired within the past three years of Arvis’s doing.  He doesn’t pardon neither nor his father for crimes to conspiracy to usurp the Grannvall throne by murdering Prince Kurth. Sigurd is sentence to death.  Sigurd, now in absolute disbelief and believing that Arvis is joking, asks if this is a cruel joke, to which Arvis replies that he is not. Before killing Sigurd, Arvis reveals something that Sigurd has been looking for the past year:

Deidre – now recognized as the wife of Arvis.

Arvis insists that Sigurd must be confronted by the daughter of his victim. Deidre, lacking any sort of recollections of her (true) marriage with Sigurd, questions if Sigurd murdered her father. The man snaps, yelling at his wife that he’s married to him, not Arvis, and that he did not do such a horrible thing to his wife who, he loves dearly by killing her father.  Deidre is confused.  She ponders why Sigurd, the man who supposedly murdered her father, is speaking to her as if he was her familiar. She requests to Arvis that she is given more time to speak with Sigurd to clear things, only to have that requet deny by her new husband.

As Deidre is courted away by Arvis’s royal guards, Arvis believes that Sigurd has said more than enough and orders the execution of Sigurd and his army.

My jaw dropped as I helplessly watched the army whom I raised and the characters I grew to love lives come to a brutal end.

“Nintendo a company for kids and family…Did they just really let one of their main characters die so violently like that?” My teenage mind couldn’t compheren that Nintendo allowed the death of a main character (among many other controversial things) in one of their games.

Continued in Part II.

 

Battle_of_Barhara

 

FOLLOW ME ON SOCIAL MEDIA:

The Swarthy Nerd Podcast
A Black nerd empowerment podcast where Black nerds (well, all nerds, but Black first and foremost) can get together and talk freely about nerd culture while also acknowledging systematic white supremacy and racism in the nerd and Eastern otaku fandoms. Every Tuesday join @superlostfan108 and @weebtrashyuki the founders of http://www.swarthynerd.com for there very informative podcast talking about all things nerdy. No desperate boot licking self hating negus who were never accepted by Black norimes for being too weird for  their love of anime and comic books by the Black community allowed. Go drink bleach.

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anime 0

We All Need A Sayaka Kanamori

sayakabestgirl

Everyone needs a Sayaka Kanamori.  Everyone.  From couples to best friends. From bosses to employees. To businesses both massive and tiny. We all need a Sayaka Kanamori.  Sayaka’s fellow cast mates Midori and Tsubame; the former who’s an anime fanatic and aspiring animator and the latter; a teenage socialite/fashion model who seeks to escape from the limelight through her artistic skills, both need her.

Why you may ask?  It’s the same reason why your grounded friend has to anchor you when you start to daydream or steer away from a placed goal. Sayaka brings guidance to those without guides.  She provides realism to friends who’re (too) fantasy-like in their thoughts.  While everyone else is crying over a difficult situation, she can shut her mind off and tackle the problem head on with laser focus.  We all need somebody who process the ability to focus on the bigger picture without distractions.

She doesn’t allow herself to be emotionally attracted to things easily.  It doesn’t means that she’s callous, cynical, and cold. In fact, she’s quite the opposite.  She truly cares about her friends’ passion for the arts. She wants to see them become successful.  However, due to her high levels of emotional intelligence combined with her cool, calm nature, it only appears that seems callous, cynical, and cold.  And that’s okay; somebody who’s always calm in any situation is always welcome in a group.

Finally, Sayaka pushes her crew to strive for both excellence and self-betterment.  She quickly reprimand Midori and Tsubame after the artist duo were beating themselves up over minor issues (such as Tsubame’s parents forbidding her to join an anime club and Midori believing her art isn’t good enough).  She reminded them both that they had youth on their side and the power to take chances/risks. We all need somebody like that who can bring us back to reality and build us up when we speak lowly about our skills.

Without Sayaka, there wouldn’t be an Eizouken…even if some of her intentions to build Eizouken revolved around gaining money.

sayaka_smell_money

-Until Next Time,

Yuki The Snowman.

FOLLOW ME ON SOCIAL MEDIA:

The Swarthy Nerd Podcast
A Black nerd empowerment podcast where Black nerds (well, all nerds, but Black first and foremost) can get together and talk freely about nerd culture while also acknowledging systematic white supremacy and racism in the nerd and Eastern otaku fandoms. Every Tuesday join @superlostfan108 and @weebtrashyuki the founders of http://www.swarthynerd.com for there very informative podcast talking about all things nerdy. No desperate boot licking self hating negus who were never accepted by Black norimes for being too weird for  their love of anime and comic books by the Black community allowed. Go drink bleach.

Instagram: YukiTheSnowMan314

My Facebook Page:
Yuki The Snowman
https://www.facebook.com/yukithesnowman/

“Personal’” Facebook:
Yuki Benji
https://www.facebook.com/yuki.benji.1?ref=br_rs

Twitter:
https://twitter.com/weebtrashyuki

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Anime community 2

What Will The 2020s Bring The Otaku Community?

You know, it’s amazing to watch the growth of otaku culture and anime as a medium. I remember nearly twenty-plus years ago when anime  was treated as, as my friend “H.H.E” puts it, an exotic art wonder from this mysterious faraway land called Japan.  If you were a kid during the 1990s, you knew that the only way to view anime was on Kids WB, Fox Kids, Fox Family, Toonami (Cartoon Network), or – if you parents or older sibling had the money – buying an $30+ VHS tape of an anime series at a geek or video store at your local mall.  Commutations between otakus, as well as sources for anime news  and anime conventions were limited. If you wanted to talk with fellow anime fans online, you best knew how to use a BBS (Bulletin Board System) or know about websites such as Geocities/Angelfire or Anime Turnpike.

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Snapshot of Anime Turnpike

The New Millennium brought innovation and advancement in internet technology.  With broadband internet slowly killing the inferior and soon-to-be obsolete 56k dial-up internet, it was easier for anime fans to upload fanart and fan animation based off their favorite series.  One would be pressed not to find a Dragon Ball Z fan Flash animation on a NewGrounds page.  Infamous otaku images boards 2channel and 4chan provided a space for anonymous otakus globally to talk about anime. Although still going strong in the early 2000s, Geocitites and Angelfire would give way to anime related message boards, indie websites, anime internet databases, and blogs.  In the real world, Sci-Fi, Tech TV, and Cartoon Network would air anime geared towards older demographics; exposing a generation of anime fans to more “adult” anime series.

Still, despite the growth of anime in America, anime was still treated as a weird exotic trendy commodity for children, degenerates,  and perverts.

Fast-forward to the mid-2000s.  Further achievements of internet technology gave birth to YouTube and Nico Nico Douga: two websites that allowed users to upload video content.  With this, otaku had near superior space to share their interests and creativity relating to Japanese pop culture. It was common to find teenagers and young adults from both America and Japan to dress as SOS-Brigade performing the Hare Hare Yukai dance from The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya  at schools, a friend’s house, or at an anime convention.  You didn’t have to look hard to find otaku performing and covering songs from otaku driven media.  Social media platforms such as MySpace, Facebook, and Twitter helped created spaces for anime fans to find and connect with one another.  As a much needed bonus, anime slowly became popular with the mainstream; causing the medium to lose  its unfairly earned stigma.

 

The 2010s is what I like to call the “Golden Age of Anime”. Anime massively boomed. No longer did you have to go online to talk and meet up with anime fans: finding an anime fan in your city was a easy as finding a sports fan.  Internet video streaming media companies CrunchyRoll , Hulu, and Netflix made it easier than ever to access anime with their on-demand video services of anime.  Two unlikely companies, Arby’s and Wendy’s, marketed their products to consumers of anime with anime-related ads and social media posts.  Dominos ran a collab ad campaign Vocaloid with Hatsune Miku as the face of the company. Speaking of the cyan hair virtual idol, she infamously appeared on the David Letterman Show (it was awkward for everyone). Established anime conventions saw an unexpected rise of attendees while newer ones spout up nearly every week in major cities.

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Anime characters and characters from iconic otaku driven media would appear in mainstream news. An image of Suika, the alcoholic oni girl of Touhou Project fame appeared as a drunken camerawoman in an ESPN reporton the infamous Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao fight. An printed photoshop image of  Zombieland Saga Lily holding a gun threatening feminists  was shown to the U.K Parliament in May of 2019.

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Suika drunk on the job.

 

Memes relating to anime were a driving force during the 2016 elections and could have inspired Donald Trump’s presidential win. At the end of 2019, Taiwanese politician  Lai Pin-yu started cosplaying as Asuka Langley Soryu  hit classic anime series Neon Genesis Evangelion.

It’s safe to say that anime has found its place in the mainstream and lost its unearned stigma.

*****

We are now in the 2020s. It’s a bit early to say what changes, trends, and shifts we will see with anime and otaku culture. Of course, I could comment on how anime fans are using anime characters as memes to cope with the possible start of World War III between America and Iran after American air bombed Baghdad: killing top Iranian general Hossein Salami. Of course, that is to be expected in this era of anime pop culture and memes.

Outside of politics, we’ll see anime shining strong in the mainstream limelight through collaboration with major companies in various fields of entertainment.   Example:  Hatsune  Miku, the virtual idol of Vocaloid fame will be performing at Coachella this Summer 2020.  Something like this could open the door for Japanese virtual idol music producers to collab with Western artists.  Perhaps one day in this decade we will see Miss Hatsune actually performing alongside Big Boi, Killer Mike, and Jeezy at a concert this decade (hip-hop artists  sampling from otaku related media is nothing new of course).

hatsune_miku_coachella.jpg

The mainstream entertainment industry won’t be able to deny the presence and power of otaku culture and fans – especially given the children of the 90s and 2000s anime fandom are entering the entertainment industry itself. Soon, it’ll be consider normal to see anime characters and otaku culture used and seen in mainstream culture.  Yes, there will be bitter soy milk drinking otaku cornballs who believe that Shinji Ikari  and Tatsuhiro Satou are personality types that will be upset that anime has become popular.

I say this: fuck them – let them be bitter while you capitalize on anime’s everlasting growth this decade.

New decades bring forth new trends, ideas, and themes that will define them.  Anime and the culture surrounding it are no different.  What will never be different are the fans of anime willing to see and help this culture grow.  What will always be the same are the fans whom seek to find other fellow anime fans, may it be online or in real life.  Regardless if this is the 2010s, 2020s, 2030s or 3030s, people will always love anime.  People will always be otaku.  People will always be willing to bring forth change to this medium.

Until next time

-YukiTheSnowMan

 

 

 

Uncategorized 0

Ending The 25 Days of Blogging

Hello dear readers,

If you’ve been following me for these 25 days of blogging goal, then you may be upset that I’m ending it today.  As much as I wanted to tackle this goal for myself, I’ve missed my personal deadline for achieving this it: produce 25 blog posts within 25 days starting on December 1st  and ending on December 25th.  I did not hit this deadline.  Reason being is that I foolishly picked a time in which I would be incredibly busy at my restaurant gig; which didn’t allow me the free time to work on 25 posts within 25 days.  Working overtime during the Holidays means I only have time to eat and sleep. For most, some would see this as failure.

But, I don’t see it as failure; it’s a step in a different direction.

I realized that it would be better for me to take my time tackling a single subject for maximum impact is much wiser.  Creating a post is like cooking stew or broth:  you must take time to prep the ingredients before putting it in the pot for a long boil. Once you put the stew or broth on the burner, you must wait until it’s ready.

If the stew or broth isn’t ready, don’t take it off the burner.

This is what I felt as I was creating topics and drafts for my content for this 25 days blogging goal.  As I was coming up with drafts for the project, it dawn on me that it would be best to treat each topic as cooking stew: write notes and ideas around the topics, create an outline, write/edit 3-5 drafts,  post online, repeat. If it’s not ready, I will not post online until it is.  I would rather much give you the product when it’s hot, hearty, and ready – not when it’s still a cold, unseasoned mess.

I rather much have you consume a long, yet informative thought provoking post from me that will make you say “damn, I can’t wait for his next post” then for me to post a short, bare topic each day for you to read and forget about the next day with another short, bare topic that’ll be soon forgotten about (plus, it helps my SEO ranknings).

So, until I quit my job and do my own thing (which is one of my early 2020s goal), I won’t do something as foolish as make 25 blog posts in 25 days.  I rather focus on one at a time and produce that then to tackle a challenge like that again. Once I free myself from working for somebody else at a 9-to-5 plus overtime, I’ll do the 25 Days of Blogging again.

chika_never_again

Until next time

-Yuki The Snowman

25 Days of Blogging 0

25 Days Of Blogging Day 15: Get The Game Of Life: Why You Must NOT Be Gameless in This World (And How to Get It)

Do you have game?  Are you a student of the game?  Perhaps a master of it. You might be  asking “what is game”.  Or, you do “know” what game is, but you have the wrong idea of it.  To start, despite popular belief, game is not the act of manipulation (of others). Game isn’t just about trying to pull as many women as you can at the club to sleep with (although that also is a type of game).  Game is simply the mastery of oneself (emotions, money, self-improvement, uplifting those in your life, etc.).  Game is awareness of the world, the rules of it, and the different levels.

ryu_meditating.jpg

 

Think of this game I’m talking about as a role-playing game. You, the main character, must level yourself up through grinding for experience. You net experience points so that  you can level up. You level up so you can upgrade yourself. You upgrade yourself so you can tackle different scenarios without issues.

roy_level_up.jpg

Rather than being a worker, you learn the game of your industry so you can become your own boss within that industry.  Rather than be a consumer of podcasts and YouTube shows, you learn the game of podcasting  or YouTubing so you can produce your own podcast or YouTube channel show.

Having game is incredibly important as life itself is a game. Like a game, there’s rules, levels, players, and experiences in this world.   If you don’t have game, then it’s easier for others to take advantage of you.  If that does happen,  you’ll get game, but by the hard way – and by that time – it’s too late.

So, how do you get game and why do you need it? Let me explain.

“Once a motherfucker get an understanding on the game
And what the levels and the rules of the game is
Then the world ain’t no trick no more, the world is a game to be played”
Tupac, Starring At The World Through my Rearview

You must get game because in life, you’ll deal with different people and situations.  You must be able to read people and have an understanding of human nature.  We live in a world where, unfortunately, people are utterly selfish.  They do not care how they obtain their goals – even if it means through manipulating others.  Somebody might trick you into doing something for them in exchange for a payout. They fill your head with grandiose visions like a lead role in a film, a luxurious lifestyle, beautiful women, whatever they can to get you to do it.  You wind up doing it only to realize they were lying to you to get something out of you without a return from their end.

However, if you got game, then you could had read through their lies.  Something in your gut would had went off telling you “hey, this don’t sound right.” That gut reaction would had led you into avoiding that situation.

Game is especially needed when you’re growing in your career. As you grow, so does your income. The higher your income, the more likely that you’ll become a target to others who want what you build for yourself.  Family members who haven’t talk to you in years trying to weasel their way in your life.  Gold-digging women who attempt to get into an relationship with you for your cash.  Fake friends who try to latch onto your riches and hang on to you until they can drain you dry. You’ll know when people are coming up to you just for their selfish reasons.

Being laced with game means leverage. You can set yourself up to receive the best outcome of a state of affair(s).  People won’t try to have you sign a messed up  contract. Instead, you use contract negotiations skills that you learned overtime to get the best deal possible.  You go straight for your money  in the highest value.

Developing game is a great confidence builder.  Being aware of who you are as a person can not only help you understand both your flaws and faults, but even embrace them.    In addition, awareness and the  handling  of your weakness means people can’t take advantages of them. If one of your weakness is that you react emotionally when somebody says something negative, learn how to react logically.  Cold-hearted if you must.  Why? Because when you’re emotional, people can get one over on you (plus, being emotional makes you weak).

By knowing yourself through game, you will know of your strengths.  Strength give you an edge over others who are weak in certain areas.  If your biggest strength is your verbal and communication skills, you can use that skill to draw others to you; especially since we live in a world where everyone is stuck to their smartphones and can only communicate through technology.  Let these idiots be absorbed by their social media apps while you’re living better through real human interactions

 

 

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Finally, having game helps you grow into a better person.

As a better person, you feel more confident with yourself.  Others will see the high levels of confidences within you and will approach you.  They want to know why you’re so confident.  Maybe your high levels of confidence will rub off on them.  People want to be around those who exhibit high self-worth and self-esteem because it’s attractive and sexy.   You are much more happier with life due to you becoming a better person.  There’s less stress with more game obtained.  You are unknown to fears because you know fear will hold you back.   The better your game, the better you are as a person.

Now, how do you get game?

There are three ways.  First, learn from those who are experienced with the game you want to learn.  Spend time with them and see what they know. Example: If you’re a podcaster who wants to improve their audio game, spend some time with an audio engineer.  See what microphones he or she are using to produce radio quality audio on the airwaves.  Ask questions such as “Why is such-and-such audio mixer superior over this one for podcasting reasons?”

Hang out with podcasters in your city – even if they don’t cover similar topics as you.  Just because you talk about anime on your podcast while the other guy covers financial topics doesn’t mean you can’t learn from him.  Who knows? One day, your anime podcast might blow up to the point it’s your main source of income. You will need to know how to manage your money and up your financial know how  In return, he might discover new anime that he’ll sit down and watch on his downtime.

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Second, there are tons of resources out there in the digital and real world that will help you get game.  Schools. Tutors. Books. Libraries. Online tutorials.  You name it.  If you want to learn Japanese and Spanish because you notice your blog have viewers readers from Japan and Mexico, go for it.  Look up how to speak Japanese on YouTube. Listen to Japanese podcasters.   Go on Cragislist to see who can tutor you in Spanish.  If you want to learn about the law, you can go to the local library and pick up law books so the criminal “justice” system won’t screw you over.

Finally, the last and best way to learn game is to go out in the world and experience the game for yourself.  Scared of talking to  girls?  Grow some balls, go to a bar – by yourself – and approach a girl sitting alone at the bar.  If you truly want to learn Spanish, work at a kitchen where the workers speak nothing but Spanish.   Instead of living vicariously through vlogs of people experience a major convention like Anime Expo, Comiket, or Dragon*Con, you can  go there yourself.

Sooner or later you are going to have to leave your comfort zone and experience this game for yourself.  Trust me: It’s much better. You learn how the world works by being in it – not by sitting at home and analyzing situations.   So please, go out there and get some game.

Because…

THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU DO NOT HAVE GAME

People will take advantage of you.  If there’s a naïve air about you, people will manipulate it for their ill gains.  Being gameless means that people can run their game on you and you wouldn’t even know it until it’s too late.  You’ll always be stuck at the bottom with no chance of growth.

So please, learn some game.

kaiji_crying

Until next time

-Yuki The Snowman

RESOURCES ON GETTING GAME:
Tariq Nasheed: Get The Game or The Game Will Get You (video)

Alpha Male Strategies: How Important Is “Game”? (video)

illacertus: 48 Laws of Power Summary (video)
25 Days of Blogging 0

25 Days of Blogging Day 14: Discipline: And Why I Should Had Been Focused in My 20s

Hello dear readers and friends,

I’m glad to announce that I’m half-way through  my “25 Days of Blogging”  goal . Constantly writing article after article for the past 14 days or so  been a joy for me as it has instilled much needed discipline for myself as I  churn out written content  nearly each day.

I say “nearly” because for the past two days or so, I’ve been slacking a bit. By now, I should had been up to Day 16, not Day 14.  This is due to working a hectic Holiday schedule at my job.  Christmas is less than a week away. People want to buy gifts for their love ones.  Working at a retail store means most of my time is eaten up by the Holiday work week.  Some days, usually weekends, I am tired and my sleep schedule becomes weird.  I need about 6-9 hours a night for sleep, or I’m going to be drained for the workday instead of alert.

Twenty-year-old me could pull a 11 hour workday followed by banging out an article all night; going to bed at 2am or 3am instead of 9pm or 10pm. Me, at age thirty?  I would hate life if I pulled that knowing I need my rest (or change my diet and reduce time on everything).  Now, that  I think about it, it’s my fault that I’m in this situation.  I always knew I’d hate working for somebody else, even as a youth.

Let’s go back twenty years ago.  Yuki: Age 10.

“So you’re going to play with an orchestra when you grow up?”
“Nah.  I rather be a solo act than work for an orchestra. More freedom for me to travel the world alone.”

Fast forward seven years later. Yuki: Age 17.

“You wanna work for a video game company if you get into game design in college?”
“Nope.  I make my own game company instead after college through networking with others globally.”

Man, young Yuki was smart. Then, due to fears and insecurities, he listened to the wrong people who had his “best” interested in mind.
Translation: I should have gotten the game before letting the game get me.

I felled into the rat race.  Went straight to college over the workforce. Should had entered the workforce and generated income eariler. Even my teacher warned me that it would be better for me to go into the workforce and networking through the workforce, then, either deccing if I wanted to do college to get my degree,  or never go into college and  grow within an industry, then leave it after learning skills. Being the idiot that I was, I listened to my parents over my teacher.  Big “mistake” full of fruitful lessons after college – and I learned the lessons after I had dropped out of college — not at college.

Long story short to be covered in the future: Entered college after high school.  Me, somewhat sheltered naive kid from a Black Christian household  (Pentecostal Christian…yea), discovers weed, drinking, and the party life style of college.  Add to that, discovering anime conventions around this time.  I had no discipline for anything – school included.  Started skipping classes.  Grades slipped.  Got into debt.  Had to pay debts off. Went back to school. “This is it!  I won’t fuck up as last time!” Start fucking up again. Repeat.

Decided to enter the workforce full time three years after that.  I also did school, but took a lighter load of only class a semester (English one semester, audio the second, and Japanese 101 the last). Did much better.  Plus, I cut off all the people who never had my best interest in mind because they were doing the same shit everywhere and weren’t aware of it.  I enjoyed working for a bit, but I was lacking one particular thing: discipline. I could be a good worker when I wanted to, but distractions got in the way. More money meant more “options”.

Instead of saving my money to build what I want (hardware for recording music, a laptop, etc.that would put me on a path of having my own), I spent money on short-term pleasure: smoking weed, alcohol, video  games,  fast food, hanging out with friends, going to conventions.  You name it.  I guess I was making up for “lost” time that I didn’t have in high school (always studying, not being allowed to have a job until I kept my grades up: so no funds for  what I wanted).   Eventually, as I got older, I realized that maybe I should had saved up and done this wild shit later rathe.

At 30, I’ve come to realized that I played myself and betrayed my younger self’s goals of never working for anyone but myself.  I let the game get me, rather than getting game. My lack of discipline  got the best of me. Sure, I needed a job to survive, but what I should had done in my college days was work on myself, build a network with like minded people, and dropped out of college much earlier.

Or never went to college in the first place and entered the work field as soon as graduated high school. If I went into the work force straight out of high school, started business building earlier (due to the lack of distractions) I would be writing this blog post somewhere in Ethiopia chilling in the Motherland, Japan while I’m getting ready to report on Winter Comiket,  England just because, or Los Angeles as a digital nomad traveling the world. Hell, I would have anime conventions fly me out and pay for my hotel rooms as a guest at their convention because they love my analytical blog posts on anime (okay, that’s a bit wishful thinking)

Instead, I’m just now planting the seeds to escape the rat race – seeds that should had been planed back in 2008 – not 2017. But, better late than never as they say.  Some people wake up at age 18. Some, age 27.  However, for all I know, this was supposed to happen. Maybe  I was suppose to fuck up in my 20s so I know what I shouldn’t do in my 30s.

Perhaps the universe wanted me to be aware of shitty people in my 20s that I brought into my life due to my lack of discipline and fears of not being social so I have the information, knowledge, and tools to make sure worse people wouldn’t enter my 30s as I’m business building.  It’s cool, I needed life to kick my ass a couple of times to discipline my mind.  I needed to be careless in my youth so I don’t be as reckless in my later years.  Thankfully, I haven’t done anything to completely fuck my 20s up, so I can take a lot of risks that the average late 20/early 30 something can’t.

Plus, they say your 30s is the true best time of your life – not your 20s.

Until Next Time.

-Yuki The Snowman.

25 Days of Blogging 2

25 Days Of Blogging Day 13: Ending Superficial Fanboy Elitist Bitterness

I’m not one to fanboy.  Okay, let me take that back. I can be bit of a fanboy, but I don’t see myself being a fanatic for anything – except for Fire Emblem.  I love Fire Emblem. I truly do.  It’s my favorite video game series of all time.  Thracia 776 is not only my first Fire Emblem game but it’s my favorite game of the series; as well as my second favorite Super Famicom game (my first being Final Fantasy 6). Genealogy of the Holy War is my favorite video game. Nothing can beat it.  I could go on and on about how it made me appreciate politics, wanting to create my own linage with my last name,  how I love the tone change Chapter 2: Disturbance in Agustria brings to the game, and how I almost got banned from Serenes Forest for “slut shaming”  Lachesis: the Incestuous Slutty Half-Sister Wonder back in the late 2000s.

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Not only is she’s a slut, she’s a pedophile too.

Mind you, there’s nothing wrong with Nintendo’s other franchises; I love Smash Bros, I think Zelda is a great adventure series. Pokemon, a childhood favorite, is still going  24 years later. F-Zero is dead. And Star Fox is a dead series for sexually confused furries in denial.  But, there’s something  magical about Fire Emblem that draws me into more than any other Nintendo series.

I’m glad to have witness the rapid growth, reinvention, and renaissance of the Fire Emblem series this past decade.  Awakening saved the series (and yes, to you spaz ass emotional ass FE super fanboys who gatekeep the series because you’ll never create anything original worth gatekeeping in your lifetime; I know their marketing campaign saved the series). Echoes proved that the younger fans can appreciate unforgiving brutality of the classic Fire Emblem game’s mechanics. FE: Heroes is gacha garbage. If Cowmila was a real girl, I’d pay her to give me a  lapdance along with Tharja while Azura sings over an Dirty South trap remix of Lost im Thoughts on my birthday because Azura and Camilla are the only good things about Fates besides Lost in Thoughts All Alone  being a remix of this song. Finally, Three Houses has not only dominated the strategy genre, but proven itself to be a mainstream Triple A juggernaut of a game.

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Three Houses MCs from left-to-right: Some white girl, Neil Patrick Harris, and Prince.

 

 

 

 

It is an understatement to say this is the best time to be a Fire Emblem fan.  Words cannot describe the fact of how happy I am to be a Fire Emblem fan today.  There is none. With that said, you will be surprise to learn that this wasn’t always the case.  In fact, during the start of the Fire Emblem renaissance, I was a bitter, angry, gatekeeping old school fan that hated the reinvention of the series and the fans. And by old-school, I was one of those annoying, assholish Shouzou Kaga dick riding FE fanboys who thought he was superior for playing the older games (who am I kidding I’m still am an assholish Kaga fanboy).

Let’s go back to April of 2013.

Fire Emblem: Awakening made it to the states after a year after the Japanese release. The American Fire Emblem community was at abuzz. We were all excited to get our hands on the new game.  Well, not me actually.  My money management at the time was foolhardy at best; so  I didn’t save up for both a 3DS and the game. Nevertheless, my excitedment couldn’t be contained for long, so I decided to check online for news surrounding the game over here in America.

 I was met with the following:

“This is a fucking waifu simulator!” “This pissed on Kaga’s legacy!” “Fire Emblem should have stayed dead!” “Not only is Lucina’s a Mary Sue, she made me realized that at least I’m not AS flat chested and flat ass like her!” “The fanbase is stupid and refuse to play the older games!”

I was shocked.  The beloved series that I loved since high school became a weeaboo waifu simulator pandering to new gen anime fans.  The new fans are talking reckless about the older games.  Worse: classic FE fans stated that Awakening was a cheesy anime game than a tactical game about warfare, life, death, and the horrors of war.  Overtime, I became angry at the fandom – bitter even.  How could a weeaboo trash entry of Fire Emblem outshine the rest of the games in the series ?

How dare this so called Fire Emblem game became the one to save the series from death!?

I wanted to talk about the other games prior to Fire Emblem (sans the Wii and Nintendo DS garbage FE games), but the newer fans only wanted to play Awakening.  Some had the nerve to call Thracia 776 and Genealogy of the Holy War archaic…which is kinda true but man, that hurt. Nevertheless, I wanted nothing to do with Awakening besides bully the Thraja fanboys for  being fans of an abusive woman and bully Lucina fans for thinking a Mary Sue character is a good one.

lucina_self_medicating.jpg
Lucina dealing with the trauma of war and her hate within the fandom. Source: https://knowyourmeme.com/photos/1108249-fire-emblem

But, like the Grinch, something in my heart changed.
As time passed, it dawned on me: If it was not for the popularity of  Awakening, nobody would be talking about the Fire Emblem series – because the series would had died.  Because of Awakening, interest towards Fire Emblem began anew – especially the older games – and especially Genealogy of the Holy War.  Awakening used the paring and generation mechanics of FE4 (where in the first half of the game, you must pair a male and female unit together in order for them to have a child unit to fight in the second half.)  The newer fans started to get curious about the origin of Awakening parent/children system. Naturally, a few of them started playing Genealogy of the Holy War along with the older games.

Rather than gate-keep and bully them (as I saw a few older fans did), I welcomed the newcomers to the series and gave tips for Genealogy and Thracia. Some complained about the massive maps  of FE4 and difficulty of FE5, but I appreciated the fact that they at least tried the older games.   Some stayed with those two games while others went on to play the GBA era FE games.

Fire Emblem’s popularity was starting to rise again.
And my bitterness towards it began to wane.

***

 

Naka-Kon 2015

While I was walking back to my hotel after hanging out with one of my  Umineko no Naku Koro ni  cosplay buddies at the convention center, I spotted a girl who couldn’t be no older than 16 cosplaying as Celice/Seliph: the second generation Lord of Fire Emblem 4. I was shocked.  Normally, anyone who was cosplaying from the series were only cosplaying as the newer characters — not the older characters. I wanted to take her picture of the Celice cosplayer and tell her how I appreciated that she was cosplaying a character from my favorite video game,  but by the time I had turned back around to get off the escalator, she was gone. Oh well. I was just happy to see the next generation of Fire Emblem fans taking appreciation of both the new and older games.

To see that somebody as young as her cosplaying as the classic Fire Emblem characters made me realize that the newer generation of fire emblem fans do have an appreciation for the older games. Plus,  it made me fully aware how foolish I was to be angry at something as superficial as the popularity of Awakening. The anger temporary blinded me from seeing the bigger picture:

Fire Emblem – my favorite video game series – was receiving love and appreciation again.

Until next time

-Yuki The Snowman

 

 

25 Days of Blogging 0

25 Days Of Blogging Day 12: Cosplay: A Quick Rundown

gundam_boz

WHAT IS COSPLAY?
Cosplay, using the combination of the words “costume” and “play”, is the performance art in which people (or cosplayers) wear costumes and fashion items modeled after a specific character from movies, anime, manga, TV series, books, comics, Western animation, and etc.

The term “cosplay” was coined by movie producer Nobuyuki Takahashi after he attended the 1984 World Science Fiction Convention (or Worldcon) in Los Angeles.

The following is an excerpt from Brian Ashcraft’s and Luke’s Plunekett book’s Cosplay World on how Takashi came up with the word “cosplay”:

“In the 1970s, Japanese college students began dressing up as manga and anime characters. These young people had grown up on a steady diet of comics and cartoons, and when they attended manga and anime conventions (as well as school and university festivals), going in character was, as in the West, a way to express fandom.

Sci-fi conventions had existed in Japan since the 1960s, but in 1975 Comic Market (aka Comiket) launched, creating a venue for self-published comics. It was a fan convention and, in this environment, what would become cosplay in Japan started to flourish. There was already a Japanese term to express the concept of dressing up: kasou (仮想).

However, the word carried a nuance of disguise and didn’t quite capture the spirit of what cosplay had become. In the West the word ‘masquerade’ could be used to refer to costuming, but when Takahashi and some university friends tried to translate ‘masquerade’ into Japanese for a magazine article they were writing, it sounded ‘too noble and old fashioned’. According to Takahashi, ‘We needed to find another way to express the concept.’

Various terms were floating around. ‘We had heard the English word “costume” and seen events with names like “Costume Show”, “Kasou Show”, “Hero Play” and whanot,’ says Takahashi. In Japanese, English and other foreign words are often combined and/or shortened, for brevity’s sake. For example, the Japanese for ‘remote control’ – rimooto kontorooru – is shortened to rimokon. ‘So we started to think of different combinations,’ Takahashi says. ‘Finally, we came up with “cosplay”.’ The term was a portmanteau of ‘costume’ and ‘play’. It was perfect.”

Source: https://kotaku.com/where-the-word-cosplay-actually-comes-from-1649177711

WORD ORIGIN OF COSTUME:
Early 18th century: From French and Italian costume ‘custom, fashion, habit”. From Latin consuetudo, which means custom or useage

WORLD ORIGIN OF PLAY:
Old English pleg(i)an ‘to exercise’, plega ‘brisk movement’, related to Middle Dutch pleien ‘leap for joy, dance’.

HOW DID I DISCOVER COSPLAY?

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G4 Tech TV’s G-Phoria 2003 award show:
One day in 2004, I came home from summer high school to discover that my dad brought new channels on the cable box – G4 being one of them.  The first show on G4 was G-Phoria 2003 award show (in preparation for the 2004 live show). Never seen an award show for video games, so I sat down and watched.  After a few gaming presentations, there was for Kingdom Hearts – featuring cosplayers doing a skit based on a scene from the game (One of them in black face. Dunno how they let that one slide on TV).

After that, they brought out around 15-20 cosplayers on the stage, each posing and showcasing their costumes and props.  I never seen this kinda shit before.  I never knew people made costumes based off fictional characters for fun.  Went online and saw that people cosplay at conventions and how there were anime cons all over America were people do the shits.  I was blow away to say the least.  It made me wanted to go to conventions.

…and then I played a romhack of Final Fantasy 6 (FF3 in  the USA) called “Awful Fantasy 3” where the romhackers made fun of cosplayers, the art of cosplay, and how cosplayers  are highly immature and love causing drama  at conventions.

Thanks Something Awful for that reality check. I never went to a convention since.

final_fantasy_6_relm_arrowny_kills_a_baby.png
A Relm cosplayer kills her unwanted baby during a cosplay skit in Awful Fantasy 3

 

WHO COSPLAYS?
People of all races, backgrounds, nationality, and ages cosplays.  From Teenagers wearing their first store-brought cosplay online to 20 and 30 something professional cosplayers who craft their own cosplays from hands and brought shame and embarrassment to their family, to even old ladies in wheelchairs rockin’ schoolgirl uniforms, everyone cosplays.  No matter how old or young, people cosplay. And they cosplay whoever they want to.

Now, you do have those in the cosplay community who think certain people shouldn’t cosplay (i.e.; racist white elitists cosplayers who think dark skin and Black people shouldn’t cosplay as Asian people even though these white boys and girls are cosplaying as Asian characters), but that’s a topic for another day where I make low-self-esteem having  racist cosplayers by attacking their insecurities rooted from childhood until they commit suicide by blowing their brains out in their Sailor Moon or Goku cosplays.

WHERE CAN YOU COSPLAY?
Well, you can cosplay anywhere, but keep in mind that cosplaying outside of convention events will mark you as a weird ass socially awkward  idiot unaware of social cues. With that said, the world is your backdrop for your cosplays.  Go dress as Marisa Kirisame from Touhou high off shrooms in the woods.  On casual Fridays at the gig do homage to Urien’s pin stripped suit from Street Fighter V by matching his grey pin stripped suit, purple oxford shirt, cognac colored belt and shoes.  Dress as Junko Kanno from ZombieLand Saga while completely coked out like any other 80s pop music star at your college’s music hall.

Cosplay anywhere you want.

For the rest us who have common sense and understand the rules/norms of society, save the cosplay for conventions or do them subtly in public or in the workforce. If you live in a society where public cosplay in frown upon or even forbidden outside of events (i.e. Japan), don’t wear your cosplay to the event.  Pack it in a small carry-on bag and don’t put it on until you get to the event.

Sources on the Japan’s negative views on public cosplay:

How Do You Cosplay in Japan by the Cosplay.com Community?

https://cosplay.com/archive/thread/5dgg46/how-do-you-cosplay-in-japan

What To Expect When Cosplaiyng in Japan by R. Lowen”

https://aroundakiba.tv/stories/cosplaying-guide-japan/

The Lowdown on Japan’s Cosplay Industry

https://japantoday.com/category/features/lifestyle/the-lowdown-on-japans-cosplay-industry

they_wont_understand_you_in_japan
Don’t cosplay in public.

WHERE AND HOW CAN YOU BUY AND GET COSPLAYS CREATED

There are options.

If you’re cosplaying as a character who wear everyday clothing (examples includes Shirou Emiya from the fate series with his grey and white baseball v-neck shirt and blue jeans or Reigen from Mob Pyscho 100 with his suit and tie) then it’s just as simple as going your local clothing store (such as Goodwill, JC Penny, Nordstorm, Jos. A Bank, Tom Ford, etc.) and buying the clothes there.  You may have to do some alternations, but they’re minor.

nordstorm.jpg
Useful store to buy casual cosplay pieces

For cosplaying characters with unique clothing that you can’t find in stores (certain school outfits,  armor, body suits such as Solid Snake’s sneaking suit), then you going to get them custom made.  Amazon and eBay have stores where vendors sell pre-made cosplays or you can go online for website that specialize in creating cosplays. Please keep in mind that online cosplay shops tend to be a little on the cheap and mass produced side of the game, so the quality may not be of that of a professional made cosplay.

If you do not want to go on the cheap side of the cosplay game and you want high quality, then you will have to pay a decent amount of cash to get your cosplay created. Don’t know anyone who creates cosplays? Then check your local convention city scene for cosplay creators (such as anime con Facebook groups).

And if you really want to do it yourself, you can learn how to.

WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENT TYPES OF COSPLAYS

With so many people of different backgrounds, races, ethnic groups, and creativity it’s nearly impossible to list all the different type of cosplay within the realm of cosplay. With that said, here are the most common type of cosplays you will find at conventions.

  1. The classic anime schoolgirl. Easily ID’d by her (or his) sera-fuku, pleated skirt, penny loafers, white blouse and ribbon. On the the preppy side of the school uniform game , the schoolgirl cosplayer wears a blazer, button-down shirt, v-neck sweater, tie, etc. Commonly seen at anime cons.
    monika_off_ddlc_cosplay.jpg
  2. Armored cosplay. A cosplay that revolves around armored characters (fantasy characters, giant robots, mech suits, etcs.) Can be found at sci-fi, comic, and anime cons
    greatest_iron_man_cosplay.jpg
  3. Superhero cosplays. Leaping out the colorful pages of American comics into the real world, these cosplayers focus on the larger-than-life heroes from Marvel Comics, Darkhorse, DC, and more.  Can be recognized by their long capes, one piece zentai suits, and hero emblem.  Often seen at comic book conventions but have been making their way into anime cons.
    20190517_103553.jpg
  4. Closet Cosplay. Cosplays that uses everyday clothing (as mentioned earlier) that can be found at stores or in your own closet.  Very simple and easy to pull off – but, in order to stand out from other closet cosplayers – you need to put in the effort (mixing high and low cost items, using a high quality wig, etc.)
  5. Genderswap cosplay. As the name states, it’s cosplays in which the cosplayer switches the canon gender of the character.  Example: a grown ass man with a full beard gender swapping Shouko  Komi (form Komi-San Can’t Commicate). Instead of wearing her red skirt, he swaps them out for red chino slacks. For the vice versa: a woman cosplaying as Goku (Dragon Ball series).
  6. It’s crossdressing, but in cosplay.
    sailor_bubah.jpg

WHY COSPLAY?
Because you have no personality whatsoever and nobody loves you unless you put on an outfit based off a fictional character.

Plus, ever dressed up as Oishi from Higurashi no Naku Koro ni doing  Hennessy shots with a dude cosplaying as Keiichi  while his homegirl cosplaying as Rena Ryuguu gotten into a drunken fist fight with  an Ai Enma cosplayer over some internet weeaboo con drama while a  Terra Brandford is grinding her ass on a Celes Chere cosplayer at a hotel party on an average day?

Didn’t think so.

Until next time!
-Yuki The Snowman

25 Days of Blogging 0

25 Days Of Blogging Day 11: Don’t Be Sorry

“Do you know what the most convenient phrase in the world is? It’s “I’m sorry.”
-Shadow Maya, Persona 2: Innocent Sin

vlcsnap-2019-12-10-20h22m45s781

A baby-boomer father and his millennial aged son are walking down a busy street in Harlem.  The father, John Shaft II is giving advice to his son, John Shaft Jr. (or J.J.), about being brave towards and around women, having a powerful manly spirit, and never being and saying sorry towards women.

J.J., perhaps due to his upbringing by his single mother and cultural influence of being a Milliennial, whole heartedly disagrees with his father’s teachings. He believes that women don’t like being told what to do. Shaft II counters his son arguments; stating that men used to be men in his day; while the men of the millennial generation worried too much about what women think and feel. To Shaft II, the millennial men  are embarrassing themselves, and that men always own up to who they are.

However, J.J. believes that real men should take reasonability for their wrongdoings.
He is both wrong and right.

(Note: If you don’t know already, the scene described above was from the 2019 movie Shaft 2019. I was going to upload a video of said scene, but WordPress won’t let me.)

In most situations (keyword for you idiots who tend to get emotional over this topic matter: MOST), you should never apologize for your actions and who you are as a person. Example: There are people who aren’t confident with whom they are.  They will be comfortable with their selves.  So, when encountering others who have accepted themselves – flaws and imperfections included – they are fuming with jealous and envy.  “Who the fuck does that asshole think he is?” they might say to themselves.  Or, they might say “That bitch think she’s hot shit when she’s really not!”  out of spite and anger.  They’ll say some passive aggressive statement towards their target of hatred in order to make them conform and/or to knock them down a peg.

If you find yourself in a situation with such a person, you must do two things:

  1. Stand strong, be yourself and check them on the spot.
  2. Run far away from them. They will do nothing but poison your mind and bring you down to their bitterness.

You must never  say sorry to them.

Constantly saying sorry when not needed can be a sign of weakness or worse – manipulation – may the latter be done consciously or unconsciously. If you’re constantly analogizing to everyone over the slightest little error or mishap, people will not take you seriously. They will get annoyed with you quick.  Saying sorry every three sentence during a casual lighthearted conversation will turn people off towards you.  It shows that you’re way emotional.

Now, I understand that some people who grew up in an abusive household with narcissistic parent(s) or older sibling. Others were in an abusive relationship with a controlling, manipulative partner; so saying sorry to others is common. You’re dreadful of offending others due to ill experiences with toxic people.  Therefore, I understand why you might say sorry constantly. To that, I say this in the most living way possible: please seek professional help and don’t beat yourself up.

Using abuse as a segue lead for the topic; saying sorry can be used as a tool of manipulation.  Let’s say an abusive male hits his girlfriend after a heated argument over his flirty, cheating nature.  He might say “I’m sorry, I don’t know what came over me.”, knowing full well his anger of him being caught up in his web of lies got the best of him.  Because the abusive man knows his girlfriend is emotionally dependent, he lies and says it won’t happen again to keep her – until it happens again and the cycle repeats.

You’re not sorry.
You’re full of shit.

You may be wondering when should you say sorry.  Well, there are a few situations when you should say sorry, mean it, and be cautious to not repeat the offense again.  If you offend a person through your actions (actual offense: not this politically correct nonsense these social justice warrior liberals believe is offensive) and you know you were in the wrong, the yes: say sorry. If you loudly barge into a quiet, peaceful room (on accident) and disturb the peace of the room, then say sorry and never do it again next time.  If you bring somebody into a situation they didn’t want to be in, take them out of it and say sorry.

Other than that, never be sorry.  Never say sorry.

Until next time

-Yuki The Snowman

 

25 Days of Blogging 2

25 Days of Blogging Day 10: Branching Out

25 Days of Blogging.  It’s like the 25 Days of Christmas, but without the creepy uncle tramazing you during the family’s holiday party. 

Day 9

As per yesterday’s post, I stated that while sticking to one thing is good, and you need to perfect one trade, rather than to tackle multiple trades at once, sooner or later, you will need to branch out to prevent burn out (as well as reinventing yourself: a topic I will cover much much later in the future).  Branching out and reinventing yourself is a great thing for personal growth. I feel that once you have mastery over one field, you should branch out into something else.

I myself have done some branching out lately.  Perhaps one of my best post of the year, The Guts To Be What You Wanna Be is a prime example of me branching out of comfort zone of anime blogging. Rather than sticking with anime for the entirety of the post, I used the iconic restaurant scene from Scarface to describe how you should draw power and courage from being yourself in a world full of cowardly fake men and women (who aren’t honest with who they are).  Of course, anime was later involved (as I mentioned anime series Megalo Box and The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya for the post).

For the past few months, I’ve been slowly getting into live action shows television and films. The other day, I brought a DVD copy of Shaft 2019 after watching the movie on a flight to St. Louis from Atlanta this past November.  I’m also thinking of buying the first two seasons of the hit FX crime drama Snowfall: based around the 1980s cocaine boom of Los Angeles.  I was put on to Snowfall by my friend and podcast partner, The TV Guru 108/Super Lost Fan 108 after recording a podcast episode a few months ago.

The first episode of Snowfall I watched was Cash and Carry of season 3.  If memory serves me right correctly, Franklin was being screwed over by his cocaine plug, Avi, who was trying to use Franklin money for an offshore banking account (for Avi’s money laundry scheme). Avi arranges a trip to Panama Islands for them both in order to put Franklin’s cash in the account. Franklin quickly realizes Avi’s scheme to screw him over. So, Franklin starts putting him in check: forcing  Avi to pay him back, using Avi’s staff members against him, and makes Avi turn over his own private plane for Franklin’s personal usage.

It was that time I realized how powerful storytelling in live action TV could be over anime – perhaps even superior.

franklin_checking_avi.png

 

Now, let’s say I were blog about live action television and films (which I’m planning to do in the future).  By targeting fans of the live action demographic, I’ll have an increased fan base beyond anime and otaku culture.  An increased of topics to talk about means an increase of people.  More people due to having various topic matters of entertainment means more traffic to my blog. More traffic means more money in my pockets.  The more money I have, the more likely  I have freedom from the 9-to-5 rat race; thus, I have more time to talk and blog about television shows and anime.

You don’t necessary have to branch out for money reasons like I’m aiming for (however, I also love talking about anime and TV shows in general). For you, you might want to branch out for personal growth.  You’re tired of being in one place all the time, so you decide to dive into something new to better yourself as a person.  Certain ventures require new skills to be learned.  Having new skills in your arsenal means you’ll have more doors open for you in this world.

It could be for personal growth. You want to add more skill sets.  It could mean more doors opening for you.  An increased of options can be given upon to you if you branch out.  Your net worth and network grows larger.  If you’re tired of being stuck with one thing I highly recommend branching out.  It’s great for your brand and personal life.

Until next time

-Yuki The Snowman

FOLLOW ME ON SOCIAL MEDIA:

The Swarthy Nerd Podcast
A Black nerd empowerment podcast where Black nerds (well, all nerds, but Black first and foremost) can get together and talk freely about nerd culture while also acknowledging systematic white supremacy and racism in the nerd and Eastern otaku fandoms. Every Tuesday join @superlostfan108 and @weebtrashyuki the founders of http://www.swarthynerd.com for there very informative podcast talking about all things nerdy. No desperate boot licking self hating negus who were never accepted by Black norimes for being too weird for  their love of anime and comic books by the Black community allowed. Go drink bleach.

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25 Days of Blogging 0

25 Days of Blogging Day 9: Sticking To One Thing

The 25 Days of Blogging.  It’s like ABC’s Family 25 Days of Christmas, but 25% more vulgar and offensive like your drunk ass Uncle during your family reunions. 

Day 8

Jack of all trades yet a master of none.  An all-arounder. but he is never staying with just one thing. Skilled and involved in many trades and he has complete dominance in neither nor. He wears many hats but you can’t pinpoint his trademark head wear.

We might know this guy. He bounces form one project to another.  One day, he’s working on a blog.  The next, a podcast.  Next week he opens a successful online drop shipping business.  The following month he’s flipping old clothes online for profit.  Next year he is running an anime YouTube channel.  He’s all over the place. You can’t pin him down – and not in a good way.

After a while (may it be from burnout or multiple projects failing), he starts to slow down.  He backs off from YouTube and podcasting for the written word: blogging.  He ends his drop shipping business and focus on flipping clothes.  He has realized that sticking to one thing and direct complete focus onto a single field is the best choice.

Since he stop podcasting, he saw an mass increase in his blog traffic.  Ending his drop shipping business means he can focus on his clothing flipping business; netting him more income than his previous side hustle.  Overtime, he winds up becoming a master of the art of blogging.  Realizing he’s making more money blogging than flipping clothes, he stops selling used clothes online and become obsessed and dedicated to blogging alone.

When you stick to one thing alone, magic happens.  You’re not spread out; tiring yourself and burning out. People see you as a respected authority figure because you’re not juggling five different things.  You are netting yourself more attention with one project than multiple. Your audience won’t feel alienated or confused because you’re not playing the switch up game every day.  Your brand won’t have an identity crisis.    And, if done right, you’ll become the top 10% of your field.

Let’s use Son Goku of the Dragon Ball series as an example of mastery of one field.

master_UI_Goku
What mastery of one thing looks like

Goku sticks with only one thing: martial arts.  Since childhood, he spent every morning, afternoon, and night training his body, mind, and spirit through the combat arts. Nothing else.  Goku wakes up, trains, learn from masters, “protect” the world from bad guys, sleep, and repeats the process.  You’re not gonna see Goku playing the guitar with Kaori from Your Life in April.   He isn’t going to spread himself out by running a shady business on the dark web like that Devil Arcana guy from Persona 3.  He is obsessed with fighting and fighting alone. It’s why he can throw down with the best in the universe.

***

On the flip side, sticking to one alone can grow stale if you’re not upgrading or reinventing yourself.  Eventually you will get bored.  You’ll hit a peak and struggle.   Your audience will want something new and leave you if you can’t provide anything fresh.  You want something new.  Therefore, you should branch out.  If you’re a blogger, perhaps branch out into the world of podcast after you spent years mastering the art of blogging.  If you’re a cosplayer, try entering the world of fashion. If you blog about anime start watching live action shows. If you never grew up watching classic shows, then you can talk about the shows you miss out thanks to your fresher mindset.

There’s nothing wrong with branching out.

Until next time

-Yuki The Snowman

FOLLOW ME ON SOCIAL MEDIA:

The Swarthy Nerd Podcast
A Black nerd empowerment podcast where Black nerds (well, all nerds, but Black first and foremost) can get together and talk freely about nerd culture while also acknowledging systematic white supremacy and racism in the nerd and Eastern otaku fandoms. Every Tuesday join @superlostfan108 and @weebtrashyuki the founders of http://www.swarthynerd.com for there very informative podcast talking about all things nerdy. No desperate boot licking self hating negus who were never accepted by Black norimes for being too weird for  their love of anime and comic books by the Black community allowed. Go drink bleach.

Instagram: YukiTheSnowMan314

My Facebook Page:
Yuki The Snowman
https://www.facebook.com/yukithesnowman/

“Personal’” Facebook:
Yuki Benji
https://www.facebook.com/yuki.benji.1?ref=br_rs

Twitter:
https://twitter.com/weebtrashyuki

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25 Days of Blogging 0

25 Days of Blogging Day 8: The Power of Going Out Alone

Spring 2015:

While I was still playing the violin on a serious level, I applied for a violinist position with the Colossalcon’s Symphonic Anime Orchestra. I figured that playing with an orchestra (may it be a professional or community orchestra) would be great for a musical resume.  Sent their orchestra director a few videos of me playing the violin, details of my skill level, and why I wanted to play with them.

A few days later, I received an e-mail from the orchestra director that I landed a violinist position with their orchestra.  Go me.  I relay the news to my friends whom were interested in going to Colossalcon. Initially, they were all interested in going.  We heard how legendary Colossalcon’s nightlife and party scene was, how the convention center double as a water park, and the vibe of the nerds  who ran the con (at the time) and the con-goers were chiller than most conventions (most anime conventions and anime nerds have a stick up their ass about partying and alcohol; Colossalcon don’t give a shit).   We got together and started to plan the trip.

Then, bullshit started to happen.
But, the bullshit was a silver lining.

My friends told me that they were low on money, so they couldn’t have the funds to go.  Their jobs wouldn’t let them off. The dates of the convention clashed with events planned prior.  Whatever.  . Perhaps this was the universe telling me I can’t rely on my friends and others forever.  Maybe the universe was giving me a sign that I need to leave  my comfort zone and experience the world – alone.

Thinking quickly, I went to the Collosalcon room share group to see if anyone had space in their room.  Found a guy named Martin whom had space in a suite with his family and friends.  Room space obtained.  Following that, I brought round trip Greyhound tickets to Sandusky, Ohio. Sixteen hours of hell both ways, but it was an amazing experience traveling alone either way.  Got the days off from my dickhead ass former boss. Finally, I counted down the days before I had to depart for my trip.

The day came.  Me, by myself, going alone to Sandusky.  Trust me: it was scary going alone. But, it was worth it at the end.  Up until then, I relied on my friends to travel with me outside of the St. Louis area.  I was too dependent on them.  However, I wouldn’t grow as a person until I learned how to travel and make moves as a solo act.

And you know what? It was the smartest move I made in and with my life.

Going to Colossalcon alone meant that I didn’t have to worry about somebody who lost their room key, therefore, making me drop whatever I was doing at the con and get them a new key.  I didn’t have to fear that my more awkward friends couldn’t control their awkwardness for longer than 15 seconds (I know it’s an anime con but being at your precious little weeaboo festival doesn’t mean that you should throw your social skills out of the window).   Didn’t have to stop a hot headed friend from fighting people because somebody hurt his pride.  I could do whatever whatever I pleased.

It was a peaceful con experience outside the drunk ass nerds wandering around the con.

***

There’s power in going out alone.  It shows that you don’t rely on others to have a good time.  You are more than willing to make moves without approval or dependence of others.  People don’t hold you back. Moving freely around to bars, clubs, etc. gets easier.  You can come and go at your own time. Making new friends and connections is much easier. Yes, you do need at times to hang out with others.  Isolating yourself from others is dangerous.  You shouldn’t cut people out of your lives – especially your (good, true) friends.  There’s nothing honorable about being a loner.  Nobody will praise you for being alone. They might be inspired by you to going out alone one day, but don’t expect praise.

However, you can’t depend on others to have a good time.

Question: Have you ever gone to a club, bar, event, or social outing and you had to leave it early due to the stupidity of one friend?  I have.

One time in particular, I had to leave a bar an hour after being it.  A friend of mines had a little bit too much to drink prior to hitting the club with our crew.  I do not know what happened, but apparently, somebody checked him and put him in his place (he might have been hitting on somebody else’s girl knowing him). He got in his feelings and tried to fight a few people – only to get his ass beat and thrown out of the club.  If you’re riding solo, you don’t have to worry about a friend like that.

Going solo also means that you don’t have to deal with certain friends who have bad social anxiety disorder (translation: being a bitch disorder) flaring up because they’re too many people around in a place.  A few years ago, a friend and I went to a huge concert in the downtown area of my town.  Wanting to break away from him and do my own thing (meaning walk around, talk to people, and hit  a makeshift bar up), I separated myself from him.  If he needed me, I he could text me on my phone.  As I’m walking away from the large dance pit, I saw this dude following me – everywhere – like a lost dog.  I asked him why was he was following me abd he was like “Well, I can’t do large crowds. My anxiety gets bad when I’m alone with too many people.”

Want to learn how to overcome your social issues? Get out and be more social – alone.  I am not saying it’s easy. It fact, it’s never easy the first time. But, you gotta over it.  You can’t always roam around the world, let alone your hometown with friends forever.  Your friends have jobs, families, careers, and other things to worry about over you trying to convince them to hang out (I’m talking to you bitch made cowardly males and females who make passive aggressive statuses on Facebook over this topic). Do you know what will happen if you don’t get out into the world alone? You will grow up and bitter with others. You will be like the millions of the elderly in nursing home filled with regret and remorse for the actions they didn’t take in life; hating on others until the day you leave this earth.

Get out there. Explore the world – alone.

-Yuki The Snowman.

P.S.
Sorry for the super late post, a lack of a featured image, and grammatical errors. I overslept this morning due to going out last night by myself at a local bar.  I should have had taken a picture of me going out alone as the feature image.  lol whoops. Didn’t want to break this daily blogging streak.

FURTHER RESEARCH ON GOING OUT ALONE:

25 Days of Blogging 0

25 Days Of Blogging Day 7: Social Media: The New Age Drug

The 25 Days of Blogging.  Instead of cheesy lame Christmas movies you get superior knowledge and information form a drunk, Holiday hating Grinch.

(Day 6 and Part 1 of Social Media: The New Age Drug)

Facebook. Twitter. YouTube. Marijuana. Alcohol. Heroine.  What do they have in common?  Free, easy dopamine access and effects.  They give their users worthless, unearned highs.  Why put forth the effort and hard work for a natural high when you can net yourself an alternate that requires no work? Stick a needle to your arm. Press down on the syringe.  Let the drug flow through your veins.  Instant high. Instant dopamine. Repeat.  Stick your phone’s camera up to your face. Press down on the record button. Talk endlessly about a subject matter. Get likes.  Get comments. Instant high. Instant dopamine. Repeat.

One method is legal. The other is illegal. But, they’re still can be destructive.

Let’s do a few strange comparisons. Social media is the modern day drug house where hopeless, lifeless junkies gather; searching for their next high to escape their horrible reality. Instead of crack whores sucking on a crack pipe, you have physically beautiful, yet mentality vain and narcissistic young women sucking on phallic-like items for the attention of and validation from thirsty guys. Socially awkward depressed white nerds are your drug dealers who supply your memes they created in their drug houses (meme pages).  They get their follows hooked on their content and the followers can’t stop coming back for more.

(The difference is that real drug dealers have a social life, courage, and can get women – unlike meme page owners).

Such with illicit drugs, shares, likes, views, and comments make social media junkies feel better about himself or herself.  As soon as they hear a “ding!”go off or a bird tweet, you can bet that they will quickly reach for their device and see what content they posed got a like or a comment.  It’s worse if they run a popular page on Facebook or Instagram.  They can’t stop raving about the thousands they like generated a day. Nor will they won’t shut up about how many mindless zombie followers they obtained a month.

Fucking digital druggie e-hippies.

These digital and drug junkies love using these drugs as a means to deal and escape their problems. The lowly worker gets himself doped up before work to deal with their shitty boss.  The straight edge lowly social media whore recklessly rants about their boss on their page. Men get drunk at the local bar to cope with their horrible relationship with their wives.  Little boys go online to talk shit about their girlfriends.  It makes them feel good. The lowly worker doesn’t have the courage to tell their boss to fuck off, walk off the job, and become their own boss.  These boys and men don’t have the courage to cheat or their wives and girlfriends.

You can’t tell these addicts any different.  You try to say that their addiction is an issue and watch them go off the rails. “I can stop anytime I want to!  Just let me take this one last hit!” “I can get off Facebook at any time!  Just let me post one more sad selfie of myself for attention!”  They’re hooked! They feel the heat of withdraw.  They can’t stop going back.

Ever notice how both internet and drug junkies love talking down to others who aren’t addicted to the bullshit? To my straight edge readers: ever had a drinker or a weedhead shame you for not drinking or smoking?  Had it happened to a straight-edge associate of mines a few years back ago at an anime convention after party. Some drunken fat party weeaboo chick tried to shame him because he doesn’t drink and smoke.  She shoved a drink to his face, pressuring him to drink.  He knocked the drink away from his face and walked away: chest out, face up, back straight. The fat weeaboo chick went on a triad and left.

You tell somebody who’s addicted to their phone that you’re not on social media because it’s a waste of time and watch them go beserek.  “How can you not be on social media? You must have no friends! Nobody must like you! You’re so lame” No bitch. You’re the lame one with no friends. That’s why you’re on the fake world a.k.a social media. You would kill yourself if Facebook or Instagram shut down for good.

I’ll say this: Despite the condescending tone of this post (I’m highly aware of it) I’m not straight edge – nor am I totally against social media usage.  I enjoy drinking alcohol and smoking weed. Hell, I even do shrooms  from time-to-time. I’m on social media as well.  Just like I love connecting with old friends and family on social media and interacting with fellow nerds on my weeaboo page, I love drink a bottle of wine with a blunt on a side at the park after work.

But, everything in moderation.

Until next time

-Yuki The Snow Man

FOLLOW ME ON SOCIAL MEDIA:

The Swarthy Nerd Podcast
A Black nerd empowerment podcast where Black nerds (well, all nerds, but Black first and foremost) can get together and talk freely about nerd culture while also acknowledging systematic white supremacy and racism in the nerd and Eastern otaku fandoms. Every Tuesday join @superlostfan108 and @weebtrashyuki the founders of http://www.swarthynerd.com for there very informative podcast talking about all things nerdy. No desperate boot licking self hating negus who were never accepted by Black norimes for being too weird for  their love of anime and comic books by the Black community allowed. Go drink bleach.

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Nerd Culture 0

25 Days of Bloggig Day 6: Misinterpretation. Misinformation.

Billy-Dee-Williams-fluid-sexuality

“Billy Dee…you’re too old to that claim you’re “gender fluid’”.

Like any sensible person, I was confused and dumbfounded  when the “news” broke out that famed actor Billy Dee Williams “came  out” as genderfluid.  It’s not that I would have anything against him for being LGBTQ, but something about this “news” didn’t sit right with me.  If he was gender fluid, gay, bi, whatever, we would have known it by now (since Hollywood insiders love talking about and exposing people’s personal lives and matters).  Additionally, I can’t imagine a man who’s near 90 being aware of a Millennial/Zoomer term such as “genderfluid”.  Older people can learn new things, sure, but something was just bothering me about it.

Fast forward to this past Wednesday, December 4, 2019.

“What the hell is ‘gender fluid?”
“Welp.  I bet everyone who thought he was coming out, praised him for doing so, and told me I was in the wrong got egg on their face.” I said to myself as I celebrated my amazing and superior logic once again. The article from The Undefeated described how media outlets twisted  Billy Dee Williams’s comments on his views his feminine and masculine emotion; he was comfortable with showing his softer, emotional side.  They didn’t catch that Williams was referring to Carl G. Jung’s theories of the conscious/unconscious mind as it relates to the anima and animus (female and male self). Clearing the air, Williams finally stated that he isn’t gay (he simply made the mistake of “using” fluidity as sexual orientation).

Was this simply an honest mistake by  media outlets?  Well, given  how mainstream media operates, especially during the Holidays (the Holidays/end of the year historically is always been slow, lacking and unexciting for major news), in my opinion, nah.  The world unwitty assumed that Billy Dee Williams was coming out of the closet. You can’t really fault the  internet for this one. Even if one were to fact check the story to debunk the media’s “claims” of Williams’s sexuality, every news source would state the same story: Billy Dee Williams came out of the closet.

Of course now, we know that’s not true.  The beloved actor is a straight man who is aware of his emotional side (and is knowledgeable on the shadow self of human nature).

However, it a great lesson on how quickly misterpreted information can spread across the internet.  In this era of the information age, incorrect material and information can reach millions in a matter of seconds. By the time anyone can correct the mistakes; people would have already believed it to be true and shared it with others globally.  Not even ten minutes could have past, and people are having intense and in-depth dialogue over information that may not be completely factual. People can read the misinformation and have their viewpoints completely changed – unaware that they have received incorrect knowledge and info.

Remember: if everyone thinks it’s true, then, it must be, right?

***

It’s amazing how we live in this era where we’re blessed to have knowledge, wisdom, and information at our fingertips. As the singer of the gambling anime Kakegurui xx’s second theme song singer JUNNA puts it, “There’s too much knowledge to be able to dream in this age”. She’s right: with all this knowledge out there in the world for us to search and hunt for, we can no longer dream about things of the “what if”, of the “who was”, of the “when is”, of the “where is”,  or the “how to”. Yet, what’s good is that all knowledge if there’s a chance it’s misinformation throw into the mix?

As we experienced with the Billy Dee Williams interview a few days ago, misinformation can spread quickly online.  This isn’t limited to superficial celeb news either. The ease of internet access for all has given rise to fake news and false information.  All it takes is one person or one entity to generate a news report or story lacking facts or truth, post it online, and have the masses  spread and share it with others.  Within minutes, the false information and fake news is out onto the world.

It’s why I hate it when people go “Well Google it then!” when dealing with a complex subject that many may not have an understand (due to their own ignorance or public schooling).   What if I do google something and find information on the subject matter?  I bring the misinformation to you, wholeheartedly believing that I have the correct information, only to have you go into an emotional fit because it was wrong all along? It’s frustrating! All because you didn’t want you back up your claims with trusted sources. I have every right to be angry at you for sending me on a wild goose chase because you wanted to please your own insignificant ego and were afraid to be proven wrong.

We are living our lives abound with so much (mis)information.

Until next time.

-Yuki The SnowMan

FOLLOW ME ON SOCIAL MEDIA:

The Swarthy Nerd Podcast
A Black nerd empowerment podcast where Black nerds (well, all nerds, but Black first and foremost) can get together and talk freely about nerd culture while also acknowledging systematic white supremacy and racism in the nerd and Eastern otaku fandoms. Every Tuesday join @superlostfan108 and @weebtrashyuki the founders of http://www.swarthynerd.com for there very informative podcast talking about all things nerdy. No desperate boot licking self hating negus who were never accepted by Black norimes for being too weird for  their love of anime and comic books by the Black community allowed. Go drink bleach.

Instagram: YukiTheSnowMan314

My Facebook Page:
Yuki The Snowman
https://www.facebook.com/yukithesnowman/

“Personal’” Facebook:
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Twitter:
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25 Days of Blogging 0

25 Days of Blogging Day 5: Social Media: The New Age Drug (Part 1)

social_media_drug

I have a question for those who are 25+ of age: Do you remember a time when social media didn’t exist?  A time where cellphones were either comically massive or barely small enough to fit in your pocket? A time when cellphones could only browse on certain websites and do emails due to limitations. Performing a video chat on phones was merely a pipe dream that you only saw in futuristic sci-fi movies.  The internet existed, but it was limited to dial-up phone lines; no “invisible” WiFi connections. Limited to computers; not phones.

It was a time where the only means of talking with with others from across towns or across the globe online was through message boards, websites,  chat rooms, and emails.  That was our “social media”.  Our social commutations came from – wait for it – going outside and interacting with others.

We lacked technological distraction. In fact, using technology as a means to netted you the label of a social impaired nerd. If you wanted to talk reckless to somebody, you actually needed a pair of balls or ovaries to step up to a person you didn’t like and fight them (keyword: fight, not dox/swat or pull a gun and kill them on them on some bitch shit)

Then, the 2000s hit.

The 2000s brought along broadband internet connection (killing the dial-up game), the dot-com bubble burst, an everlasting slew of message boards, chat-rooms, and of course, social media. Computers and internet services became cheaper: increasing the ease of access for both items. Japanese electronics company Sony brought board band online gaming to the world in 2001 with the PlayStation 2.  Their Western competitor, Microsoft dropped XBOX Live in 2002. A year later, MySpace – one of the original social media websites launched followed by Facebook in 2004.

Within the first four years of the 2000s decades, the seeds of social networking where planted; paving the way for others companies to create their own social networks such as Bebo, Black Planet, and Gaia Online. Facebook of course, would grow into the innovating but social destructive juggernaut that would plague humanity today.

In unison, phone technology evolved with the internet, computer technology,  and social media. No longer were phones’ internet services were limited to only email a select few web pages.  Overtime, you could browse full web pages without flaunt.  You could chat with your friends using your phone’s camera (a feat only seen with computers’ webcams). Social media websites such as Facebook and Twitter created their own apps for phones. The  phones themselves became cheaper and more powerful; easing access for consumers – like their computer counterparts did years prior.

Here were things took a turn for the worse.

Let me say this: technology and social media are amazing tools – if they’re kept it as that: tools.  You use tools. You don’t let tools use you.   Alas, society has allowed itself to be used by these tools.  Social media was meant to connect people with friends, family, business prospects, consumers, et cetera. But, as I stated earlier, gaining access to these tools became easy. Too easy in fact (you simple, entry level smartphone from Net10 or Tracfone have social media apps).

People started to figure out a few things:

  1. The internet allowed them to paint a fictional story of their lives.
  2. Strangers and friends alike could like your content
  3. Social media is a highlight reel

When you combine those three, you create a dangerous issue for humanity.  Let’s be real: whenever we get a like or a comment on the content we created, we get a sense of joy (me included). And isn’t an one-time deal.  The more content you produce for social media, the more likely you will have people liking and commenting on it. This creates a near endless cycle of producing content for likes – may it be real or false.  The more likes you get, the more “happy” you are.

That’s a dopamine effect. You know, dopamine: the same chemical in your brain that reacts to drugs such as marijuana, coke, heroine, ketamine, etc. Social media is a drug; a legal drug at that. You don’t need to go to a shady black market dealer to get it.  Just need a device with internet connection and content to post.  And, as with any other drug, once the effects are gone, you need even more. Your next fix. The urges are stronger.  It’s hard to break away from the drug.

Ever notice when you aren’t getting likes and comments from people who think they should stroke your ego every chance you get when you post something? You feel angry, moody, and depressed.  So, you start to post even more mindless, pointless content in hopes that somebody will like your stupid stuff so you can get that high again.  You even start refreshing your page thinking that it will help. It’s like a druggie indulging in more drugs to get that dopamine fix again.

When that doesn’t work anymore, you feel empty. You feel empty so you go in search for something to fill the void. It becomes an addiction.

And addictions are dangerous.

Until next time,
-Yuki The SnowMan

FOLLOW ME ON SOCIAL MEDIA:

The Swarthy Nerd Podcast
A Black nerd empowerment podcast where Black nerds (well, all nerds, but Black first and foremost) can get together and talk freely about nerd culture while also acknowledging systematic white supremacy and racism in the nerd and Eastern otaku fandoms. Every Tuesday join @superlostfan108 and @weebtrashyuki the founders of http://www.swarthynerd.com for there very informative podcast talking about all things nerdy. No desperate boot licking self hating negus who were never accepted by Black norimes for being too weird for  their love of anime and comic books by the Black community allowed. Go drink bleach.

Instagram: YukiTheSnowMan314

My Facebook Page:
Yuki The Snowman
https://www.facebook.com/yukithesnowman/

“Personal’” Facebook:
Yuki Benji
https://www.facebook.com/yuki.benji.1?ref=br_rs

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