• I never expected this to happen.
    I was a normal kid, when I was little. I mean, I watched Pokemon, and stuff like that, but it was no big deal, right? All the kids did that, right? The hours I spent watching the cartoons, buying all the little cards and magazines and knick knacks, it wasn't weird. I grew out of it.
    In middle school is where it really started, I think. It's where I met her, anyway. She couldn't walk anywhere - she bounced. She was always so full of energy. And she would never be quiet! All she talked about was some...thing, some whatever I could never understand. Anime, psh. Cartoons. Grew out of those yonks ago, stop talking to me. But she was nice, and she kept coming back, so we became friends. I'll just ignore this strange obsession she has.
    Then, well, you know how it is. She lets you borrow some DVD, you don't actually plan on watching it, it's cartoons, but there's nothing else to do...it was actually pretty good. You give it back and borrow the next one. You watch it as soon as you get home, before you do your homework even. You see the next volume at the store, and buy it without thinking.
    I think it was at that point I started to have misgivings. I mean, I just spent $30 on four episodes of a cartoon.
    But, by then it's too late.
    In junior high, we're still friends. I really liked that one show, but I tell myself I'm still normal. She's glad I liked the show. Yeah, it was good, wasn't it? If you liked that one, then how about this one?
    At the bookstore, I first encounter manga. I buy InuYasha vol.5, for some reason.
    My first day of high school, I wear a Fruits Basket t-shirt and carry a Fullmetal Alchemist bag. I get a few strange looks. I barely even notice.
    I obsessively buy the latest volumes of all my favorite manga. I'm sure that Viz and Tokyopop have made thousands off of me by now, but I don't care.
    I have to own all my favorite series. I can identify nearly every voice actor without ever once seeing the credits, and I refer to them by their first names. I've never actually met any of them.
    Nearly my entire wardrobe has some anime character on it somewhere.
    I draw anime characters in my spare time.
    I have subscriptions to Shojo Beat, Anime Insider, and Otaku USA.
    Upon hearing the name "Edward," most girls think of Twilight. I think of Cowboy Bebop.
    Everything I know about forensics I learned from Conan Edogawa.
    My ideal boyfriend is Tamaki Suoh.
    My cat's name is Chihiro, after the girl from Spirited Away.

    ...I never expected this to happen. You never do.
    I might have been popular, you know. When did I pass the point of no return? Why does it really not matter to me anymore?
    I can't help it. You forget that it's animated, you forget that you're supposed to think it's stupid. And you remember being little and wanting to be a Pokemon trainer. Something about anime...I don't know what it is, but it brings out something in people who have otherwise forgotten how to enjoy something. How to love so passionately and obsessively that it affects every aspect of your daily life.
    I used to be a normal kid, but now...
    Watashi wa otaku desu ne.