Monday, June 3, 2013

On Nerdin' Out

Nerd, geek, dweeb, dork- the word has many synonyms and negative connotations, but I see nerd as a positive thing. Nerd doesn't have to mean an overly intellectual or socially awkward person, it can also mean being really passionate about something. Just like the loose translation otaku in Japanese, it means someone with an obsessive interest, or simply an enthusiast.

I consider myself an 'enthusiast' of some sorts, and I like that it's more accepted in Japan. For example, I like to watch and re-watch movies all over again and note all the different details and research the filming locations (Chungking Express), collect every single thing that a band released (Sonic Youth), and closely study trends and cultural phenomenons. Well, blogging can be considered nerdy too. Although the subject of my enthusiasm is usually considered cool (Sonic Youth is a prime example), my behaviour isn't.

In Japan I found that I could more easily unleash my inner nerd, and not be embarrassed about my little obsessive quirks. In Japan I found myself growing rather curious about trains, and well, I'm a bit of a train enthusiast now, as Japan has such a fascinating railway system. Doubtful you'll see me waiting on the tracks with an extra long lens at 6am, but I like reading about them. I like how many Japanese usually have one hobby or interest they study deeply, rather than a string of different interests they know more or less about.

Many people come to Japan as they have particular interests, such as anime and manga, or the study of the language, but I was never one of them. I came to Japan simply because I fell in love with the country when I visited, for no particular reason- or rather, for a million reasons I can't clearly explain.

In other news, I've been eating lots of okra lately, this mini zucchini vegetable. I've been eating it raw, putting it in salads and just loving it. I've also been snacking on those edamame cripsp, you can find them at the supermarket and conbini. I used to eat them often back in Shikoku, but forgot about them and now I'm all over that stuff again.

What's your favourite Japanese snack? Are you an 'enthusiast'?

Japanese snack, Tokyo, edamame
This stuff!! My favourite snack.

Salad, Tokyo, okra, writing
Just another Monday evening: salad + writing + Orangina


Isabel said...

I miss the edamame crisps soooo much!

Christine said...

I used to have a lot of hobby then I started working and I'm too tired to keep up with all of my other interests.

I pick up a new hobby here and there but nothing stuck the longest like blogging.

I tried knitting, painting, jewellery making..etc.

I wish I had more free time to unleash my creative side.

T Jr. said...


My best snack in Japan is "Heart Chip-ru" .

I have eaten since I was kids. You shouldn’t take it before a date because of garlic flavor.