Eximius Blogger Award

Oh dear… it’s been a hot minute since this happened to me. Thank you, RiseFromAshes, for this tag! Without further ado, let’s dig into this thing! I’ll just Ctrl-C-Ctrl-V these rules real quick… 

  1. Use the official logo/graphic of the award and display it on your blog post
  2. List the rules (Oh hey! I’m doing it right now!)
  3. Tag the original creator, Riddhi of WhisperingStories, and the person who nominated me (did the latter already. Alright, I’m speedrunning this thing!)
  4. Mention the most exceptional thing about you and your blog (Oh… hm. Okay)
  5. Mention one thing exceptional about the blogger who nominated you
  6. Answer the three questions posed by the person who nominated you
  7. Share your favorite post from your blog
  8. Tag SEVEN people?! Because seven is such a magical number?! Well, SOMEONE hasn’t watched Schoolhouse Rock.

Exceptional Thing About Me

My statement here might sound pretentious, but from my perspective, I don’t know anyone else who possesses the following quality. The exceptional thing about me is that I’m restraintive, which is apparently a real word, since Google Docs didn’t put the red lines underneath it. I’ll keep it short for those who have already taken the time to read my various blurbs of emotional insecurity. Basically, I’ve been fighting to consume less media in this society where you have to consume all media, especially what’s popular. I’ve had a great time exercising this much restraint, although I still have anxiety over my tendency to take the path less traveled every. Single. Time. Well… A for effort, as they say!

Exceptional Thing About My Blog

This claim might be biased by my perspective as the writer of the posts on my blog, but here it goes anyway! In essence, my blog is not pretentious. One of my biggest issues as an autistic man is that I read other blurbs and blogs about stuff, and get taken in by some of the hyperbole they use. I go into the thing expecting literally what they said, I don’t experience it, and I end up feeling really salty… mostly about myself, since I take stuff too literally. In any case, other than some sarcastic humor, I try to refrain from phrases like “life-changing” or “transcendent” (the website J-rock News LOVES the latter). I feel like my writing style makes my blog more transparent than that of most people. 

Exceptional Thing About Rise

I say that not being pretentious is an exceptional thing about my blog… Yet, ironically, I feel the same way about Rise. Their posts are down-to-earth, and I’ve felt that they’ve been pretty consistent with the aforementioned unpretentiousness. Also, I have simply not seen anyone else on the Internet discuss Japanese dramas. It’s pretty fascinating that there’s a whole other industry of acting outside of anime, and that it doesn’t really seem to ever take off in the West at all. Availability is a problem too (fyi, Rise lives in Japan, where it’s easier to see that stuff).

Rise’s Questions

What medium (books, movies, etc) do you think is best for an immersive storytelling experience?

Well, I basically have this down to three candidates who all have different advantages, and those advantages only work out in the best case scenario for each thing. However, I feel like the one that’s easiest to strictly nail immersion is the realm of videogames. They have all the advantages of movies, but you’re an integral part of them. The right combination of artstyle, music, and ambience can really make you feel like you’re really there, no VR required.

Who is the blogger whose posts get you thinking the most?

I can’t answer this without spoiling someone whom I’m going to tag. Oh well! My answer is Irina, the drunken anime blogger. As if it was the late 1960s, her being so inebriated makes her smarter (I guess?)! She has a wide range of tastes, ranging from mainstream to off the beaten path. While she mostly posts anime reviews episode-by-episode, her little rants are her strength. She really cracks open the nut that is the anime community and digs deep into why it’s so depressing and horrible. It’s nice to hear a sane anime fan for once.

How often do you write for your blog in a given week?

Almost all the time. Whenever I have a thought, my phone, and a private place, I write away, right away (hooray, English puns). There are many posts you haven’t seen, and probably never will. 

Favorite Blog Post

For some reason, I’ve actually come to be the proudest of my retrospectives. I don’t do them too often, mainly because I have to both be willing to re-experience something, and not have re-experienced it in years. As much as I want to plug the Xenoblade X retrospective that I worked so hard on and got almost no views for, I kind of feel particularly proud of my Atlantis: The Lost Empire retrospective. While I ended up making a claim about its representation in Disney Parks that turned out to be incorrect, I feel like it has a good balance of love and criticism that isn’t blinded by nostalgia. Give it a read if you want to learn about one of Disney’s weirder movies from the 21st Century.

Seven Bloggers to Tag:

Questions for My Victims People I Tagged 

  1. What’s a mega-popular thing that you just cannot comprehend, and it makes you so mad to try and comprehend it?
  2. What is the most annoying contemporary music piece you have ever heard?
  3. On a scale of 1 to 10, how much do you enjoy/wholeheartedly resent the digital world of social media platforms?

Conclusion

Well, that’s another tag done! Other than finding people to tag, I really do enjoy answering the questions. Thanks again for the shout-out, Rise!

Peer Pressure Tag

Well, this is amazing timing for two reasons: 1) I was really running out of blog posts, and 2) I had actually written a whole rant revolving around this very topic! In any case, RiseFromAshes tagged me with this very relatable… er… well, it’s not really an award. It’s more like… the opposite. Anyway, let’s go over the rules!

Rules

  • Link back to the creator, which is Random Thoughts of My Fandoms.
  • Provide a link to the person who tagged you.
  • Answer all questions honestly
  • Come up with 5 questions of your own. (4 have to be about peer pressure; 1 can be random and about whatever)
  • Tag at least 10 people and provide links to their blogs. Please no “you!”
  • Recommend at least 5 books or songs you see everywhere/are very popular that you’ve read or listened to.
  • Use the hashtag #peer pressure tag for easier visibility

This first part was confusing, because it looks like you actually have to answer five preset questions in addition to the custom questions asked by the person who tagged you. The rules don’t say “answer the default questions first”, so I’m going with my gut here. Speaking of going with my gut, that’s how I’m going to go about answering the questions!

Questions 

  1. Have you ever done anything because you were scared you’d be missing out? (FOMO)

I’ve got no idea what that acronym means because, in case you’re new to my blog, I’m an uncultured swine! That’s exactly why I’m such an interesting recipient of this tag, not to toot my own horn. In any case, I never did anything because I feared I would miss out. I didn’t care about prom or nothing, folks.

  1. Do you often do things just because your friends or someone close to you is doing it? 

This I haven’t caved yet, but damn, have I been tempted. I watch a lot of people on YouTube, and since I choose to have no friends, those YouTubers are the closest I’ve got to being close to someone outside my family. They have vastly different tastes from me, a lot of which lean toward the mainstream. It’s really hard to watch their videos at times.

  1. Have you ever felt uneasy about giving your opinion simply because it would be unpopular?

Well, yeah. However, I have my blog that’s chock full of unpopular opinions. The good thing about WordPress is that it seems pretty low in toxicity. If I dared Tweet something like “#Gloryhammer slaps, dawg”, I would likely get a negative response (but that’s also the Internet in general). I’ve also heard horror stories of K-Pop fans somehow being able to end careers, but luckily for me, I haven’t witnessed it for myself.

  1. Do you ever find yourself running away from popular things because you don’t want to be labelled as “basic?”

Honestly, I’m not afraid of being labeled as “basic.” I’m afraid of not being labeled as a human. I tend to proudly proclaim the fact that I’m an uncultured swine, but it’s really a front so that I can pretend like it’s okay to be one. 

  1. (Random question) What’s your dream job?

I’m doing it.

Rise’s Questions:

  1. What’s the best result you’ve had from doing something because of peer pressure? (I.E. made new friends, discovered a new TV show, etc)

The following answer doesn’t even count as peer pressure, but there’s no other example that comes to memory. Like, eight years ago, someone I had tried to be friends with made an offhand comment about how much they loved Disturbed. That ended up being why I tried the band last year, and I love them too. That’s not peer pressure, I know, and I probably would’ve tried Disturbed if they had shown up in my recommendations on Apple Music. But I’m gonna be honest, I don’t have peers to pressure me.

  1. What’s the worst result you’ve had from doing something because of peer pressure? (If it’s really bad, skip this.)

My mom made me attend the graduation ceremony from vocational school. It made me miserable and anxious. 

  1. During your time online, blogging or not, what’s the best case of peer pressure going well that you’ve seen/experienced?

I’m sorry, but I have no recollection of such a thing.

  1. If you have a funny story involving peer pressure, can you share it here? (If not, give advice on dealing with peer pressure)

I don’t have a funny story. So, as per the rules, here’s advice: Don’t let anyone tell you how to live your life. I recommend getting into metal, because that genre embodies not caring if you’re accepted by society. But honestly, any music is good, as long as it helps.

  1. (Random question) What is a video that lives in your head rent free? Link it in this post.

The community of YouTubers that I follow has been doing a yearly charity stream since 2018. And of all the segments of all the streams up to this point, a particular segment from last year’s stream is pretty special. It’s three hours long, so make sure you have popcorn.

Tags (Why do these posts demand so many?!):

Questions for the Tagees:

  1. Do you frequently consume media for acceptance in a community?
  2. What do you do if a close friend is really adamant about making you read/watch/listen to something they like, even though they know you don’t, but they’re making you do it anyway because fwiendship?
  3. Have you ever been peer pressured into voting against your will? If you voluntarily enjoy voting, then give advice on how to deal with peer pressure.
  4. Have you consumed media because a celebrity made a positive offhand remark about it?
  5. (Random Question) This sort of counts as peer pressure but not really… Anyway, do you feel like you are obligated to consume media by diverse people because you’re afraid of being called a racist by toxic P.C. people? I don’t know how bad it is outside of the U.S., though…

Recommendations: I was stumped with this part. My first answer was the five books of Percy Jackson and the Olympians, since they are mainstream books that I enjoyed as a preteen. But honestly, with how consistently disappointed I’ve been with the books published under the Rick Riordan Presents imprint (and the later Trials of Apollo books), I question if Percy Jackson was ever that good. Fortunately, I still have a good record of loving Disney movies, but movies aren’t allowed in the rules! As such, I’m just going to put Disney songs as recommendations, since I actually listen to them casually.

  • Let It Go
  • Show Yourself
  • Friends on the Other Side
  • Under the Sea
  • Be Our Guest

Kore wa Watashi Award

My third reward! AND a hundred followers?! Well, I cannot put my appreciation into words. Thank you guys! Oh, and thank you, RiseFromAshes, for nominating me for this Kore wa Watashi award. So, without further ado, let’s jump into this thing.

Rules:

  • The Purpose of this tag is very simple! Describe yourself through anime! To do this you will answer all of the questions below! (Oh… Ooooooh, Rise… you inadvertently made this really hard for me. You see, I don’t particularly like anime…)
  • After this is done you will tag 6 people to pass the tag onto! If you’re tagged for a second time you only have to tag 3 in your next post and 1 on your third attempt and should you so choose beyond. Tell us why you nominated these people!
  • People who ask to be tagged should be added to your tag list with a link to their blog!
  • Tell something nice about them as well.
  • Remember to have fun with the tag and be proud of who you are, you are an amazing person and the fact that so many anime and anime characters share traits with you shows you are pretty breathtaking!

Questions: 

Describe a hobby or passion you have through an anime series! For example: Shokugeki no Soma if you like cooking or Initial D if you like cars.

Easy! One of my hobbies is books, so… yeah, A Witch’s Printing Office! Oh wait… that’s not an anime! AAAAGH! Right, Ascendance of a Bookworm is a thing. Great, my answer is a series I don’t even like! What a cruel world.

Simplify yourself to an Anime Archetype (Tsundere, Dojiko, Shota, Shounen-Protagonist etc)  don’t overthink what an archetype is, go with your gut. Name a character that is also that Archetype.

I’m a kuudere for sure. Because of my social awkwardness, I come off as incredibly deadpan and mumbly. Also, if you read my blogs a lot, you’ll see that I tend to not have actual emotions about anything. Does Seiya from Cautious Hero count as a kuudere? I hope he does because I don’t know any other possible candidates!

Describe your looks through comparing it with anime characters, you can decide how many!

Since I have no self-confidence in how I look, I’m just going to say Shigaraki from My Hero Academia for this one. I think I’m plug ugly and creepy as hell. Sorry, but those are my honest thoughts.

Describe your romantic bias and or sexuality through anime characters you find attractive.

*insert the Will Smith meme from at the movies/ ta-da*

I’m confused by this one based on Rise’s response. It seems the character I pick must be both someone I find attractive AND have my same sexual desires at once. As an otaku, I find a LOT of anime girls attractive, but I don’t know a single one who actively doesn’t want a relationship. Although I’m a straight white guy, the closest response I can come up with is Daru from Steins;Gate. He only likes 2-D girls (like me), and looks hella handsome in the future in Steins;Gate 0.

Tell us about your day to day life and what anime that would fit into! You can be creative here!

For the sake of my anonymity, I don’t want to give away my job (it also doesn’t matter because the best fit is also a series that’s not an anime). I guess Ascendance of a Bookworm wins again, because of how darn hard I work.

Describe your hopes and dreams through an anime character.

I’m just gonna be cynical: Squidward from Spongebob Squarepants, with the headstone that reads “Here Lies Squidward’s Hopes and Dreams”. Oh, and before you tell me that Spongebob isn’t an anime, you should know that IT ACTUALLY IS (a fan-made original anime-style animation on YouTube). In actuality, I have a hope and a dream, but I wanna keep it a secret (also I don’t know any anime where it would apply). 

My Nominations: 

This part is always the hardest because there are so many bloggers to choose from. I’ll try my best… 

There, I did it! These are all solid bloggers with a wide variety of writing styles. Check them out!

And with that, my work here is done. Once again, thank you, Rise, and all one hundred people who have followed me!

The Mystery Blogger Award!

So I learned that there’s not just a blogger recognition award, but also a mystery blogger award! It was created by this blogger named Okoto Enigma. And guess what, RisefromAshes nominated me. Thanks for the love, buddy! Anyways, the rules for this one are much more complicated than the other one… which is why it took me a whole week to come up with this post.

Rules:

  • Display the award logo on your blog
  • Thank the blogger who nominated you and provide a link to their blog
  • Mention Okoto Enigma, the creator of the award
  • Tell your readers three things about yourself
  • Answer five questions from whoever nominated you
  • Nominate… ten to twenty bloggers?! I don’t even follow that many people!
  • You’re also supposed to comment on your nominees’ blogs, but Rise just tagged them instead, which I think is a lot easier to do tbh
  • Ask your nominee five questions, with one of the five being weird or funny
  • Share a link to your best post

About Me:

  1. I love Japanese culture a whole bunch, but ironically, I’m not a big fan of anime. Movies are fine, but I can’t stand how low budget the TV ones are (also, the most popular ones are available in another medium anyway).
  2. I have a good track record of not liking anything mainstream.
  3. Well, I didn’t want to divulge the following information this early in my career, but for the sake of the award, I’ll say it: I have high-functioning autism.

Rise’s Questions:

  1. What type of driver are you? If you don’t drive, what type of driver do you think you would be? I do not drive. But if I did, I would be one of those old people who moves at two miles per century. 
  1. If you could give any series of your choice (anime, manga, books, etc.) a reboot, which would you pick?Soul Eater herpaderp!” J.K. that’s the easy answer that everyone gives. I sifted through about ten thousand options, and decided to answer with “The Legend of Korra” because my reasoning is the most simplistic out of the rest.
  1. As a follow-up to #2, what would you change about the series in your reboot/re-write? All I’d do to fix Korra is to expand upon the Equalists storyline from season one and have it be, you know, the whole story. I’d also flesh out the PTSD aspect of Korra’s character arc and not shoehorn it in right at the end.
  1. What’s your opinion on apples, the fruit? I think apples are hit-or-miss. If you have a really good, crunchy apple, then you’re set. However, they will not excuse you from going to the doctor. Damn the lying turd who told us that.
  1. Do you like blogger tags? I’m pretty new at this and uh… I don’t actually know what blogger tags are? If you just mean the literal tags you put on your post, then yeah, I like them just fine.

Oh boy, my nominees. Well, if Rise didn’t nominate ten, then I sure don’t have to! I nominate I drink and watch anime and Takuto’s Anime Cafe (wow, repeating two of my nominations from last time). 

Questions for my Nominees:

  1. Do you listen to Japanese music outside the sphere of anime? (What I mean by “the sphere of anime”: people like LiSA, Konomi Suzuki, ReoNa, etc.)
  1. What is your track record of agreeing with mainstream trends?
  1. Seriously, how do you put up with the low-budget aspects of anime?
  1. What is the most underappreciated media (anime, manga, book, music artist, etc.) that you have ever come across in your life?
  1. Is mayonnaise an instrument?

My Best Post?

I’ve been working on a two-part Top Twenty Favorite Music Artists of All Time (which could end up becoming a three-part Top Thirty because I LOVE MUSIC DAMMIT) that I anticipate to be my best post, but that’s not going to be ready for quite some time. So instead, here’s a link to a very recent post: Mack’s Top Ten Favorite Japanese Music Artists (updated from my Top Five from last year). Most of what I cover are manga and light novels, making this very much not the norm. But man, I’m sick of crap like BABYMETAL and Kyary Pamyu Pamyu getting all the love! Sorry, but I’m using this award to spread awareness of some very underrated Japanese bands.

With that, I’ve (hopefully) met all of the mystery blogger award’s conditions. Hallelujah, holy sh**!