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Otaku @ the Extended Family Dinners

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Most of us have family who aren’t really family. Your mom’s brothers, cousins and their dogs for instance, are not people you meet often or even consider friends. Yet just a few times a year, you have no choice but to sit down for a couple of hours with all these semi-strangers and these sure are horrendous torture sessions. Even the normal among us feel the strain, much less the less-socially inclined otaku brethren who would be far more comfortable in his room watching the latest episode of Penguin Musume Heart.

There are many daunting perils, some of which are listed below, along with the means to counter them.

Problem: People Picking on your Appearance
There’ll always be relatives who want to demonstrate their superiority by pointing out your fashion faux pas. "Why aren’t you wearing a Hugo Boss belt?" they ask. "It’s really the basic apparel for a male your age." and their hands gesture towards their own full body suit of Hugo Boss, never mind the large pauch it covers.

Solution
Yes, otaku wear t-shirts, shorts and slippers everywhere. The most formal ones wear jeans. So what’s wrong with wearing a t-shirt filled with naked cartoon girls HUH?? Teach them the fashion haute coutre of the otaku by stripping off your otaku sweat-stained COSPA t-shirt which is printed with Ayanami Rei, and squeezing your otaku manboobs (moobs for short) into their smug faces!! That’ll teach ‘em. For a Finishing Touch (remember to point out this is Cloud’s level 3 2nd Limit Break and that you are angry cos only angry otaku can use limit breaks), rip off their Hugo Boss and offer them the COSPA sweat-stained otaku shirt as the only piece of clothing alternative. Then continue your moob attack relentlessly.

Problem: People who Tease You on your Beliefs
There’ll certainly be those who without fail, must impose their beliefs on you or mock where your ideals lie. Be it religion, ambition, goal, morals. A good example is the ingestion of Sharks’ Fin Soup. This may seem barbaric to non-Asians, but the SFS is a staple for all proper Chinese dinners. In fact, it’s a status symbol dish that is deemed essential to many. It is also expensive. But what SFS is just shark cartilage which has no taste, boiled in delicious chicken broth. The broth tastes heavenly, and still tastes heavenly without the fin. Because I make it a point never to eat the SFS even when served to me, my relatives love to make fun and trashtalk. Previously, since they are uncles, I would just keep silent.

Solution
Gather your spiral energy and destroy them. Otakus must learn from Light Yagami. Weaknesses must be exploited, and the people who trashtalk you can be countered easily without you appearing rude to the non-aggressive relatives. You have to change the topic and make the target shut up, which is easily achieved by a sharp retort. The SFS one which I used recently was "I’m not eating it so that you can have two bowls, since you love it so much but can’t afford it yourself, bankrupt boy." Usefully, this uncle was on the verge of bankruptcy and my words achieved double damage critical attack. Similarly, another uncle who was near 60 and talking nonsense about how weddings should be about making people drunk violently, was silenced with a "Wtf, this old man is full of shit. Must be the male menopause."

Problem: Boredom

You don’t know anyone well there, nobody has the same interests and the food takes ages to arrive.

Solution
Taking out your headphones and PSP/DS/Laptop might be a good solution, but others would quickly tell you to put it away because playing games during mealtimes is rude. Yes, staring into space is very polite. The correct thing to do is to take out your EARPHONES and PSP/DS. And when someone asks you to stop gaming, you hold it to your ear and ask, "Hello? Who called? I’m at dinner now. I’ll call you back later." and then resume gaming. Your foolish relatives will think it is a handphone. Handphones are OK in most families as they are not games and instead, a means to make money.

Problem: People Attempting to Communicate about your Hobbies or Worse, Ask You to Fix the Computer
The worst thing that can happen is your parents or siblings telling everyone you are an otaku or geek who likes anime and computers. Next, you’ll get all the kiddies coming to talk to discuss WHO IS YOUR FAVOURITE NARUTO HERO, or illiterate adults commanding you to fix their computers which are full of spyware, porn and viruses.

Solution
Always state, even if you have to lie (but try not to lie as it will not be successful), a really boring-sounding hobby or major or career option when people ask you the relevant questions. For hobby, if you like Gunpla, say "I’m interested in polystyrene moulding and 3D structure design." If you like anime, it’s "Modern Visual Culture with a dash of Japanese influence" and games "Interactive virtual simulators". The danger is that to dumb relatives, all these sound like "I’m good with computers" and thus can fix for free any time any place. The trick then is to say loudly, "NO These have nothing to do with computers!" and then act frustrated, following it up with some jargon-filled ramble. As for those who wish to talk to you about anime, they’ll ALWAYS ask, "What anime do you watch?" and as fast as possible try to follow it up with "Do you know Naruto?" The solution is simple, reply to the first question with "Everything." and they’ll generally get daunted and stop asking because they realise the difference in levels. But if they are too dense and continue the Naruto road, you must say, "No, let me show you better anime" and then ramble off a list of at least 15 anime, all so esoteric they wouldn’t have heard of. If this doesn’t scare them off, they must be cripples.

There you have it, the most common problems solved. There’s probably more, that you guys have experienced, so bring them up!!

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27 Responses to “Otaku @ the Extended Family Dinners”  

  1. 1 Kurogane 115 comments

    It’s always good to see you back occasionally with gems like this.

  2. 2 FFVIIKnight 4 comments

    Haha! Epic. I should employ some of these tactics in my upcoming family reunion.

  3. 3 wongtcsg 27 comments

    tell me, do u really wear T-shirts with naked 2D girls printed on it?
    If yes, let’s meet up.
    I want to see.

  4. 4 double

    Luckily for me, I don’t face such things at family reunions, so I can freely enjoy the dinner without having to think of counters against attacks from relatives.

  5. 5 Stifler 59 comments

    Would you eat shark fin soup, if the shark fin isn’t shark fin? :P

  6. 6 C.I. 3 comments

    Goddamn Narutards, now they invades our family dinners with their plastic Kunai and Emo Sasuke hairstyles.

  7. 7 lelangir 2 comments

    “So what’s wrong with wearing a t-shirt filled with naked cartoon girls HUH??”

    LOL. Nice one. Er, I’m not a computer geek per se, at least I’m code-illiterate. Neither would I say I have “moobs”. Maybe my otaku-wear is boxers and a tank top, since it’s so damn hot here.

  8. 8 Labbes 3 comments

    Moob Attack!

  9. 9 zoku88 3 comments

    I only have a problem with the last two you listed, but my god, are they big. I hate having to “fix” other people’s computers… I can’t use your solution, though, since I’m an EECS major…

  10. 10 IcyStorm 13 comments

    YOU SPEAK TRUTH, although for me it’s more of friend gatherings (friends of my mom, that is).

  11. 11 Tiny Red Man 126 comments

    my convo with my relatives have been always the same for the past 10 yrs.

    “Eh, so what are you doing now? Schooling? Poly? Waiting for army? Got GF already?” All my answers for the past 10 years changes accordingly depending on where i’m at at the point…

  12. 12 samejima 19 comments

    During reunions, I usually act normal as if I’ve never watched anime nor do otaku stuffs in my 22 years in this world. But some of my cousins watch Bleach, etc.. so sadly, I’d give in to them since it’s pointless to have a conversation with the older relatives (uncles&aunts, etc.) talking rubbish.. Thought I think I’m the only one who watches anime to the extreme among the younger generations… but there’s a cousin of 3-4 years older than me who watches Naruto, bleach and play PS2 games to the extreme.. we both love SRW series games.

  13. 13 Blowfish 7 comments

    Haha!
    So true!
    Especially the Boredom and when people try to Communicate with you about your Hobbies

    About the Narutards:
    Just went to Japanday in Düsseldorf today and about 85% of the Cosplayers there were Narutards…The rest Bleach and from time to time something acceptable.
    Oh dear Lord how i wish they would actually listen to my recommendations

  14. 14 kokanaden 289 comments

    @Blowfish Anyone cosplaying as Snake?

    Well I tell them that since I am studying Political Science, I have to acquaint myself with everything related to Political Science, including anime and drama and games.

  15. 15 nunka 2 comments

    The true secret is to erase any real-life evidence that could possibly point to you watching anime. To become a non-weeaboo in social situations. It’s done wonders for me. Wouldn’t really recommend it, though… it tends to fuck with your head.

    But really, I don’t have many cousins near my age, so holidays and the like are generally easy enough to survive.

  16. 16 Exiled_Gundam 11 comments

    Haha, the “commenting about you appearance” and “ask you to fix computer” thingie do happen to me though. The first usually happens to me coz my own appearance isnt as good as most of my siblings and relatives (i usually have uncombed hair) but my relatives never brag about branded clothes etc (coz most of us isnt that rich). The “fix the computer” thingie I dont mind much, coz among my relatives. I were among the people who are capable of doing that stuff (fix the computer). In some way, it is an acknowledgement to me (plus i’m a computer science student too).
    The other thing my relatives usually ask me is about girlfriend, coz among my adult siblings and relatives, i’m the only friends without girlfriend yet. Usually what i reply is i’ll will find a girlfriend after i working and earned a stable income

  17. 17 Nano 61 comments

    OH, I just fell for the Fix-My-Porn-Com-NAO trap…

  18. 18 Owen S 111 comments

    I’m amazed you can actually talk like that to your relatives and not get slapped by your parents. Are they like super liberal or something? Or are your relatives?

  19. 19 dKiWi 52 comments

    I second Kurogane. Feels like the old times again, eh? :)

  20. 20 tj_han 1097 comments

    Owen S: The trick is to pretend that you said it and then write a blog post about it. Or, do it in a language most at the table do not understand, maybe English. Or do it when the people who might get offended aren’t at the table.

  21. 21 Tsubaki 492 comments

    In otherwords: Bullshit.

  22. 22 Blowfish 7 comments

    @Kokanaden

    Nah no Snakes…
    Like i said most of the time lame costumes.
    The only Videogame Chars is saw there was a halfway decent Wesker and some Links

  23. 23 wolfx

    >>>”I’m not eating it so that you can have two bowls, since you love it so much but can’t afford it yourself, bankrupt boy.”

    LMAO!! If you truly said this…i’ll say you must’ve gained the “most disrespectful nephew in the Han clan” and probably the GAR award. As much as he deserved it, I think that’s going below the belt.

  24. 24 Faye 47 comments

    I’m in love with this blog again. ^^

  25. 25 Silencers 28 comments

    I used that “I watch everything” trick on my many, MANY 13-16yr old Narutard cousins [my mother has 14 siblings]. More often than not they insist on talking about who Naruto is fighting now, or that Zaraki is fighting the Nmber 4 of the Espada [am I wrong? I don’t care.]

    Then I ask “Who did he fight before this?”
    Tard: “[insert villain name here]. He wasnt as strong this one.”
    Me: “So after this he fights someone else?”
    Tard: “If he defeats this one, yeah. I think so.”
    Me: “You think he’s gonna win?”
    Tard: “Dunno. He’s got the [insert random attack name and skill level] now, so maybe he can.”
    Me: “I bet you he’s gonna win.”
    Tard: “Why? He-”
    Me: “After that, he’s gonna fight someone a bit stronger and lose.”
    Tard: “Maybe, but-”
    Me: “But he survives, and goes training. Learns a new skills, and beats the new guy in round 2.”
    Tard: “You don’t know-”
    Me: “And then, he meet another MUCH stronger guy, and loses, but survives. Goes training again, learns something new again. Beats the guy up in round 2.”
    Tard: “That-”
    Me: “You have the whole collection. It’s happened at least 3 times. Why shouldn’t it happen another 4 times?”
    Tard: “….”
    Me: “Naruto was like that. As was Bleach. One Piece. Dragon Ball. Dragon Quest. Ueki. Rave. You’ve seen all of those. You know it’s true.”
    Tard: “….”

    After that, they never mentioned any anime to me ever again.

  26. 26 Veester 1 comment

    I have no cousins my age… one of my aunts is even younger than me. Because of this, I’m often bored.

    My remedy: I bring my big brother along :P We both have the same interests… so I don’t have to worry.

    I also draw during the waiting time. The adults sometimes like to comment on how good/bad the drawings are, then you can try to make conversation.

    I’m very happy that you have such wonderful ways to defeat the problems at the family reunions. Thank you for your aid :D

  27. 27 Victor 60 comments

    @Silencers i see the vast difference in levels… it’s like pitting lulu against ichigo

Do not use any < and > for your own sake. It will end the comment there and then. Also, there is an automatic IQ filter which weeds out comments made by those who accidentally got transported from the stone age.

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