One subject I’m interested in is the way anime and related popular culture can help fans who suffer from social anxiety or other emotional challenges, providing an escape that they can use to manage their situation and giving them a way to interact vicariously with fictional characters in a way that’s positive for them. A big reason we all enjoy anime and good visual novels is the strong emotions the stories let us access, and most of us have a list of anime series that are dear to us because they let us experience the sensation of getting a chance to say goodbye to a loved one, or sampling the most beautiful love story ever told by Miyazaki Hayao, or whatever is important to each of us. I love the way the positive and happy emotions we experience in a well-written anime story or game give us positive feedback in our lives, like an invisible hand giving us one of those cute anime head pats to make us feel better.
As a rule, Japan’s various legal institutions closely follow those of the West, with the same kinds of laws, accounting principles and a legislative body modeled closely on the venerable Parliament of “Britain-senpai.” But one big difference between Japan and the West is the way people use 判子 hanko (kanji name stamps) when indicating approval on a contract, filling out forms at the bank, and so on. A custom imported from China 2000 years ago, virtually every Japanese carries one of these unique name stamps with them. When a couple decides to get married, they head to their city office and fill out a marriage form, then both get out their hanko stamps and, in an iconic gesture, stamp the document…and just like that, they’re married. One of the joys of being a gaijin in Japan is getting one of these name stamps made, which involves choosing official kanji for your name (though it’s perfectly okay to have one made using katakana, too). There are various ways to go about assigning kanji characters to a foreigner’s name, including basing it on the pronunciation or assigning your name as an unofficial reading for the kanji that represents your name, called ateji. When I first arrived here, I did a stupid thing, actually registering my name legally in kanji as 飛偉多阿平院 (pi-i-ta-a pe-in), which means I have to write these ridiculously difficult kanji on insurance forms and other legal documents.
J-List has a new service for our customers: the J-List Anonymous Shipping Service for onaholes, which provides an additional layer of privacy and security for you. Our dedicated packing staff will take responsibility to open your item(s) and repack them in a secure generic inner package, discarding the outer box. Great for customers in certain countries! So, which waifu(s) will you order first?