Ikiru = To Live

In Japanese, Ikiru 生きる means “To Live.”

I was playing Danganronpa V3: Killing Harmony and the students were talking about the purpose of life. I thought that Kaito Momota’s statement, “Life’s purpose is to be lived!” was quite interesting.

What does it mean, though? The statement makes sense, but it’s also so vague. If I try to go deeper, I become stuck. Does it even have a deeper meaning?

Back in March 2018, I wrote a post about the similarities between the 1952 film, Ikiru, and the 2017 anime, Inuyashiki. I think that both series show what the purpose of life means to the protagonists. From what I gather from these two works, I think the common theme is that helping other people –> brings meaning to their lives. I don’t believe that this is the same for everyone, though. Maybe this is the answer, but I don’t think it’s that simple.

Maybe we will find out the answer on our own. I just hope that I won’t be close to retirement by then (like in Ikiru and Inuyashiki)…

If you have any thoughts about this topic, please let me know!

“Ordinary Person” [Sekai Ichi Hatsukoi]

Sekai Ichi Hatsuko Episode 8

I’m 23, just graduated from university with two degrees and feel this way for everything I do. Blogging, cosplaying, photography, drawing, school, work… I can’t even remember when I did not have such feelings of just being ordinary. Shouta Kisa from Sekai Ichi Hatsukoi is 30 and feels this way. Is it bad that I’ve felt this at a much younger age? Have I ever felt gung-ho about anything?

Truth be told, my Why Do I Blog? and Why Do I Cosplay? posts were written to help myself decide if I should continue to blog and cosplay. Like Kisa, I don’t feel depressed about this. I’m just being realistic.

RE: My What’s Your Ultimate Talent? (Danganronpa Inspired Post!) Click HERE to read it. I now have an answer to my own question I wrote at the end of that post. I used to be unsure, but now I think I would rather be the best at one talent instead being kind of good at multiple talents.

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OK, this may all sound pessimistic as heck but since I’ve wrestled with these thoughts for a long time, here’s what helped me:

I think about my favourite singers and bands. Some are very popular and famous, while others are lesser known. Don’t I like them all the same? Isn’t it just personal preference? I don’t see anyone giving up, either.

I am not the best at anything I do, and it’s not something I’m striving for, either. I just want to continue to do my hobbies because it brings me some joy. That’s all.

When we keep our expectations of this world and of ourselves low, there will be less disappointment and heartache later on.

Anime Quote: Fune wo Amu

This is a continuation of my << Tonegawa’s Speech [Kaiji] >> post. In that post, I talked about how I realized that I am living my actual, real life at this very moment, at all times. For more context, read the post…

However, when I finished writing that post, I was still confused because I didn’t have enough information. What does living a fulfilling life look like? Did Tonegawa follow what he preached?

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Then I watched Fune wo Amu. It’s a highly underrated anime and I don’t have anything negative to say about it. Go check it out.

Fune wo Amu follows the life of Mitsuya Majime. Majime dedicates his life towards creating The Great Passage, a dictionary that will always remain incomplete. Why incomplete? Because words are alive and are constantly changing, so the dictionary will need to be continuously revised and edited. It is Majime’s life’s work. The Great Passage will help people better understand one another and make society a better place.

This line is from the last episode. I feel a lot of respect towards people who have something to live for, people who dedicate their entire lives towards something they are passionate about. When people pour their hearts into a piece of work, it’s very admirable and honourable. Perhaps this is an answer to what I’ve been thinking about.

When You’re Close To Finishing A Show… But Don’t

I never had this “problem” before, until recently. I’ve finished some shows, but other shows… I am close to finishing them (just 2 or 3 episodes until completion) but I’ve stopped watching them. I like the shows, too. See below:

  • Gosick 22/24
  • 2Moons 9/12
  • Eternal Love of Dream 53/56
  • TharnType 9/12

& I’m trying to figure out the reason(s) for why I do this. Do you guys do this too? I have a few ideas:

1. You don’t want the series to end. You aren’t ready to let go of the characters and the series. If it never ends, you can avoid feeling the post-series “void.”

2. You are afraid of a bad ending, or a rushed job.

3. The show already gave you everything you wanted… whatever that was.

4. You lost interest in the show.


I’m sure there are more reasons. If you can think of more reasons, please let me know. I feel like none of these are exactly it for me.

Confused anime gif 8 » GIF Images Download
How I’m feeling

Tonegawa’s Speech [Kaiji]

I was mindlessly scrolling through Instagram (this is nothing new) and I came across this meme.

I immediately thought about Tonegawa from Kaiji. So I rewatched his speeches and I really like this one.

Normally, those people would never wake up from their fantasy worlds. They live meaningless lives. They waste their precious days over nothing. No matter how old they get, they’ll continue to say, “My real life hasn’t started yet. The real me is still asleep, so that’s why my life is such garbage.” They continue to tell themselves that. And they age. Then die. And on their deathbeds, they will finally realize: the life they lived was the real thing. People don’t live provisional lives, nor do they die provisional deaths. That’s a simple fact! The problem… is whether they realize that simple fact.” – Yukio Tonegawa

Frankly, I felt called out. I often tell myself that I don’t belong here and that I wish I could teleport to another world. That I feel like an alien sometimes. I frequently think, “If only I could do this… If only I had this…”

Tonegawa’s speech makes a lot of sense to me. Whatever fantasy world I’m dreaming of, I need to wake up from it. I need to recognize that I am living my real life right now. It is a simple fact…

Let’s say you recognize that you’ve been wasting your life away. Then what?? Thinking is easy, but taking action is not.

Foolish or Not? The Most Foolish Traveler in The World

There are parallels between the story told by Momiji in Fruits Basket, The Most Foolish Traveler in The World, and Oscar Wilde’s short story, The Happy Prince. 

The Most Foolish Traveler in The World: About a traveler who is tricked by a goblin and gives up his legs, his arm, more and more, and finally his eyes. The only thing left is the traveler’s head. The goblin gives the traveler a “present,” a piece of paper with the word “FOOL” on it. Because the traveler cannot see, he is so happy to receive a present for the first time. 

The Happy Prince: About a statue of the late Happy Prince who learns that there are many poor people suffering. He asks a swallow to give the townspeople the ruby from his tilt, the sapphire from his eyes, and the gold leaf from his body. The swallow, who delayed his flight in order to deliver these gems, dies from the cold weather. The townspeople then think that the statue is shabby and melt it. The swallow is dead and the Happy Prince is heartbroken, but they are taken to heaven for their good deeds in the end. 

It’s interesting how one story has the word “foolish” in the title while the other has the word “happy.” You could argue that both stories have a happy ending. The traveler is happy to receive a present for the first time, and the swallow and Happy Prince go to paradise.

So, was the traveler foolish? Was the Happy Prince foolish? Was the swallow foolish? 

My thoughts: I think that the traveler was foolish. How long will his happiness last? What will happen after the story ends? He cannot walk, cannot see, and does not have other people to help him. The goblin won’t help him, that’s for sure. It’s good to receive presents from people, but at what cost? If one action of “kindness” from the goblin costed you everything, that kindness was conditional. It’s fake. 

I think the Happy Prince statue was foolish. Even though the story has a happy ending, he begged the swallow to deliver the gems even though winter was approaching. He is responsible for the swallow’s death. The Happy Prince “died” with a broken heart. The same townspeople that he helped are the ones who melted him in the furnace. They were going to replace him with a statue of the mayor. Sure, the townspeople were unaware of the Happy Prince’s good deeds but does that really matter? If you’re only going to keep the “shabby” statue because he helped you first, I question what’s going on. 

Although… I like these stories. While I think that the traveler and the Happy Prince were foolish, they are rare to come by. I would like to meet someone like the traveler some day. 

What do you think? 

Food for thought

Nobuyuki Fukumoto, creator of Kaiji and other series, has a spin-off manga about a man who craves for Instagram likes. It’s called Legend of a Strongest Man Nakane, a spin-off of Saikyou Densetsu Kurosawa. At first, I found it hard to believe that there is a series about this topic. Instagram?? What??

Nakane’s colleague explains that he buys cakes and other cute-looking sweets just for Instagram. After the post is up, he trashes the dessert because he doesn’t like sweet foods.

This page made me think. I think this is a really good point. With so many people in the world, I understand the desire to stand out from the rest.

The counter argument. Seeking approval. Craving the spotlight. “Celebrity” wannabes. Running around like idiots. WILL YOUR WORTHLESS SELF GET SOME PEACE OF MIND?

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I don’t think that posting on Instagram is that serious. Nakane and his colleague go to great lengths for likes and there are surely many users who do the same. I would believe that most users are not like this.

I frequently post on Instagram. I don’t think my intention is to “stand out” because I don’t think this is realistic for me. Maybe this is pessimistic thinking on my part, but there are so many users.

I don’t think I am looking for approval on Instagram and I don’t think I am a celebrity wannabe. Am I running around like an idiot? Maybe to some people. Will I get some peace of mind from getting likes? I wonder…

I hate this. It’s fun to take pictures and post. It’s nice to have a backlog of the good times and shared memories. Sometimes you feel more connected to others by using Instagram. At the same time, I hate it. Society feels superficial. & you know what? I will not stop using Instagram…

Tsundoku 積ん読

I was reading Kaiji Part 6, 賭博堕天録カイジ 24億脱出編 and these pages stood out to me.

Basically, Kurosaki owns a campervan that he hasn’t used. He tells Endo his dream of travelling all over Japan in his campervan. He has a pile of books he hasn’t read and plans to read them. Endo thinks that if Kurosaki hasn’t read a short 200-page book yet, then it won’t happen. Endo also thinks that this is all a fantasy; that Kurosaki will be bored of this kind of life in less than a month.

This made me think. I also have a pile of books I haven’t read yet. I keep buying books with the intention of reading them but I buy books faster than I can read them. There is a Japanese word for it and it’s “tsundoku.” Endo’s line, “Maybe you’re not even suited to reading books in the first place?” felt like it was calling me out on a personal level. I’ve probably read over 10,000 chapters of manga but when it comes to novels, maybe I’m too optimistic.

Sometimes I think about throwing my phone in a river and living in a cottage. I think about it again then realize that I would be bored in less than a day. I long for a simple life, but I think I secretly crave for something much more chaotic.

This is the kind of person I am.

Why Do I Blog?

Blogging is my hobby so I would say that I blog for myself. Sometimes I ask myself why I blog, or why I cosplay or draw. Sometimes I have thoughts like, “There will always be people who do it better than you. What impact do you make?” but I don’t think that this is a correct way of thinking. Undoubtedly, there are people who are better but there is only one of you- and no one can be better at being you. 

1. I blog because I hate boredom. I become bored very easily, did you know? 

2. Even though I say that I blog for myself, I still want my writing to impact at least one person. One person, that’s all I wish for. I believe that I have accomplished this. Should there ever be a time where absolutely no one reads my blog, I am unsure if I would keep writing. 

You could argue that the satisfaction I gain from impacting another person is still blogging for myself. 

3. I need an outlet. I spend so much time watching shows. How could I not write down my thoughts about an episode or show that left a big impression on me? 

4. My hope is that people will become interested in the things I like after reading my posts. ^^

5. Online friends and the AniBlogger community. This should be placed higher but I’m listing these in random order. I’ve been lucky enough to have met a couple of blogger friends in real life. ^^

6. I can convey how I feel through writing. When I write a blog post, I feel like I am writing a letter. 

7. It is a record. This is probably one of the most important reasons to me. 

8. “Hey! I exist!” This is also a feeling I want to convey when I update my blog. I really value all the comments, emails, and messages I receive from readers and blogger friends. 

9. I don’t want to stop writing. Sure, I write messages through social media every day. I argue that writing on the blog is different and I don’t want to lose the routines of reading or writing.  

10. I genuinely enjoy blogging.

11. Self-care.


I don’t have desires to monetize my blog or make money off of my blog. I don’t want to make a career out of this. As Lumi said before, my blog is my corner of the internet. 

Buraiden Gai – Suffering Originates from Desire?

Buraiden Gai is a short manga by Nobuyuki Fukumoto. Fukomoto is well-known for creating Kaiji and Akagi. It’s a really interesting and intense manga. I recommend checking it out! One page in particular stuck out to me and it was about desire (Remember to read right to left).

This page reminded me of the following quote by Edgar Allan Poe:

“All suffering originates from craving, from attachment, from desire.” — Edgar Allan Poe

What do you guys think?? Do you agree with this notion or the quote? It makes sense to me, but I would love to hear what other people think. This makes me feel negative because of the bottom panel that says, “There’s only a few people who do achieve their dreams … the world has more people who failed.” Is this even true? At the same time, I feel relief from having a greater understanding about suffering.

I’ll leave you with this final quote from Buraiden Gai (Chapter 31)…

“Isn’t dream the same thing as desire?” — Nobuyuki Fukumoto