A Mirror for the Romantic

June 30, 2014 § Leave a comment

I got into anime my senior year of high school. Even at the time, I knew I was late to the party. It wasn’t because I was precocious enough to perceive that anime’s “golden age” in the late nineties and early naughties was coming to a close right then. No, it was a social thing, like everything else in high school. The people I knew who were into those crazy cartoons from Japan, the people who introduced me to them, were already so steeped in the knowledge of them that I felt like I would always be a permanent amateur. I would be the guy who started playing his first instrument in his forties and is able to pick out a half-tempo version of “Stairway to Heaven” but not much else.

I don’t mean to say that it kept me from getting into anime. Like I said, it was high school, so I was stupid and stubborn and, above all, willing to do anything to impress a girl. That’s right, I got into anime to impress a girl.

Rem and Vash from Trigun

The story’s actually not that interesting beyond what I just said. There was a girl who worked in my theatre class, she was into cosplay, and I watched Trigun in order to be able to talk to her about me cosplaying one of the characters from that anime. Unsurprisingly, she turned me down to date someone with whom she actually had some things in common besides a single anime, but I still gained something from the experience. It wasn’t just a better understanding of what I really wanted out of a relationship, although that was welcome knowledge then and now. No, I gained a new medium with which to entertain myself and to find new possibilities. I became, slowly but surely, the guy who could stumble his way through “Stairway to Heaven.” Cosplaying Wolfwood from Trigun was just my first attempt to play.

Me as Wolfwood from Trigun

That cross is still in my dad’s garage and is free to you if you’re willing to haul it out yourself, by the way. The convention staff made me register it as a weapon, so it’s probably pretty valuable.

Anyway, I’ve been at it for ten years now. I’ve seen everything I’ve been able, expanded my knowledge through it, and gradually started contributing to the conversations that felt entirely inaccessible when I first decided to watch Trigun in order to win a girl’s heart. Of course, I’ve also met other people whose knowledge in anime, film, and everything else has dwarfed mine and reminded me that there are more songs than just “Stairway to Heaven,” if you’ll allow me to torture that metaphor just one last time. They’ve convinced me and I’ve convinced them to start this blog, where I will start more conversations about whatever anime I’m watching and they will do the same with the media they’re on at the moment. Through these conversations, we hope to explore the realms of the possible in media everywhere, together with our readers.

So yes, by way of all this nonsense, I welcome you to the Crab-Flower Club. Our circle is not very large, nor is it very distinguished, but it is full of warmth and talent. Enjoy!

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