Monday, March 19, 2007

I am NOT a wannabe asian.


Yellow Fever victim.

Annoying white people have many names, and thankfully, I am not one of them.

Everywhere you go, there they are: People obsessively speaking in bad Japanese, saying "Kawaii", and watching far too much anime to be healthful for what tiny bit of sanity must be rolling around in their skulls.

They have invaded Cons - where once the halls of great geek gatherings were rocked by cries of "The Ringworld is Unstable!", they are now filled with Tenchi Muyo fans, and the Kzinti are relegated to a small side room. Thankfully, this room is filled with sci-fi fan Vietnam veterans - a group that, ironically enough, likely knows more about Asian culture than your average otaku.

(Remember, kids: Even if you're cosplaying a Klingon, do not swing at or threaten a Vietnam war veteran. They're generally nice guys, but those hair-trigger reflexes can bash your face in before they have a chance to introduce themselves.)

Admittedly, I do suffer from a related affliction: A fetish for Asian food. There's a good reason for it, though: When I was a toddler, my parents lived in "married student housing" across from a Korean couple that also had a kid. My folks usually took care of cleaning and groceries; their Korean friends took care of me, and I learned to love Kimchi before I was able to verbalize "Holy moly, this stuff is smelly!"

However, unlike most wannabe Asians, I like REAL Asian food, of almost all types - I can't stand take-out Chinese. Take me to a Korean restaurant, and I'll order the spicy whole octopus tentacles - I'll likely be crying from the insane heat throughout the meals, but I'll keep eating anyway. The suckers have an interesting consistency, I must say.

(A heads up: While I can't remember the name, there's an absolutely brilliant - if tiny - Korean/Japanese restaurant in Racine, Wisconsin. It lacks all the stupid decor of the crappy pan-Asian place across the street, but you can smell the Kimchi across the street - always a good sign for Korean.)

I am, however, an American otherwise - I like cheese on just about everything, have a weight problem, and can't stand anime. (Unless it's Cowboy Bebop,which is good only on its own artistic and musical merit.) I flat-out hate Sony, too.

I also offer an apology to true Japanophiles: If you bother to learn Japanese and the vast number of related Kanji, AND the nuances of Japanese culture, go right ahead - I dare say that there's nothing wrong with wanting to move to Japan, or being unable to afford the insane price of rent in Tokyo.

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