We only played this at home. Since it’s quite embarrassing telling the whole world your love for anime (and games too).
I am not sure if this is prevalent among anime fans, but don’t you realize the older you are, you tend to be more secretive over your interests. I talked to Reverse Vampire about this, and she agrees with this observation. I do not know why I feel this way too though. It makes no sense to be actually EMBARRASSED over your interests. Why?
I grew up watching Dragonball, Orange Road and many other interesting anime on my local television series. I used to share with others about my love of anime, particularly to my friends in secondary school and junior college (For our visitors in the Western hemisphere, it’s high school). However, now that I have become a policy analyst that serves my nation’s students, I suddenly feel like qualifying my love for anime when asked. Some of my colleagues know of my interest in anime, but I seldom tell it out.
For me, personally, I think the key reason is the stigma toward anime. The two likely responses you get when you ask people about their views of anime are “cartoons” or “porn.” With such negative connotations, I am not going to go through hell in order to pursuit my casual interest. Sure, there will be many anime fans that will criticize our judgment, but I guess in the working environment I am in, it is not that easy to clarify things. Of course, I try to educate my peers, as well as my superiors on what anime is in order to get rid of any inaccurate images. However, it is hard to get people away from this misconception despite the clarifications. Sometimes, it’s better to keep mum about it, instead of displaying it externally.
I think there is also a juvenile perception on anime activities too. People tend to frown over activities such as cosplay, considering them to be weird, and as such lump all anime fans with such “bad” stereotypes. However, it is a little weird why people have such misconceptions of anime compared to like “book readers” or other activities.
I grew up watching ‘kiddie’ anime such as Pokemon, Digimon, Sailor Moon, Cardcaptor Sakura…you get the idea. It’s quite embarrassing telling my classmates and friends that you watch all these everyday. It got worse when I entered secondary school, which I NEVER told any of my friends and classmates (With the exception of my best friend, who is more of an anime otaku than me.), since most of my friends are either into soccer, Korean-pop (Don’t even try to name every Korean boy band and for the record, 99.1% of my school’s female population are into this, don’t get this started readers.), Twilight (Even the boys in my class read it. It’s the truth.) and girl talk. It’s so hard to get my interest in anime to anyone, afraid of being laugh at (And I don’t want to be remembered as an ugly otaku girl for the rest of my life by my classmates. People know my name really well in secondary school. Or being reminded that I’m too old to watch ‘cartoons’.) I did not told most of my classmates about me interested in games, as they have the stereotype mentality that ‘games are for boys and tomboys only.’ Especially with my obsession with the Kingdom Hearts series. It’s sometimes hard to reach out with people especially when they had this sort of mindset.
Sometimes I wished my friends could understand my (And a minority of anime lovers in the school population) interest in anime, manga and games. Like Impz had said, it’s harder for us anime enthusiasts to get the misconception explained to others. Right now, I think it’s better I didn’t tell them anything rather than making my classmates misunderstand even further. That also explains why I had very few friends in my social life; I’m still happy the way I am.