Otaku Corner: Words and Their Meanings

By Chloe Kong

Konnichiwa and welcome to another segment of the Otaku Corner! Last segment, we talked about seiyuu/ voice actors for a change. Today, let us have a chat about some terms that you may have heard of or even knew and some of you may have never heard of them before. Note: These terms are just mentioned and explained in general terms. Hence, I do not mean to offend or cause any discrimination or some form of stereotyping. So are you ready? Ikuze!

Terms #1 Genre:

  1. Shoujo [少女]

Basically, this term means young girl. In many of times, we hear this term as a genre for manga and anime. The term Shoujo Manga refers to manga that are targeted for girls. Although, that does not mean the boys do not read them. Shoujo manga are often sweet and fluffy which makes it popular among the audiences as they are able to experience the sweetness of the romance through the story and the characters.

  1. Shounen [少年]

Shounen on the other hand means young boys. Like Shoujo manga, this genre targets to young male audience and likewise is also popular among the other gender. From the Shounen series that I have encountered so far, they contain action, romance and even comedy!

  1. Yaoi

In the LGBT term, yaoi means the love or rather sexual relationship between two males. Female audiences who prefer this genre are called fujoshi.

  1. Yuri

Yuri is the opposite of yaoi. This genre is targeted to male audiences and likewise, male audiences are called fudanshi.

Terms #2 : ETC

  1. Tsundere [ツンデレ]

Tsundere refers to a person who is either cold or hostile on the outside but is the opposite of that on the inside and that side takes time for it to emerge.  In anime or manga, characters who are tsundere usually would deny things a lot, especially when it comes to the things they want or like.  Their actions and speech at times or most times are viewed as cute by the general public.

  1. Yandere (ヤンデレ)

The opposite of a tsundere. Yandere characters can initially be nice and sweet at the beginning. As time passes by, these characters can be quite scary and possessive. Yandere characters are known to be quite dangerous as well as possessive in anime or manga, especially when it comes to the things they like.

  1. Kuudere

Derived from the English word ‘Cool’, the cool and collected kuudere characters rarely show their emotions. While being embarrassed, their faces remained stoic. Kuudere in anime are viewed as cool and silent.

  1. Kabe don [壁ドン]

(Kabe: Wall; Don: the sound of fierce slapping on the wall) A kabe don is a popular act in shoujo manga and anime. Considered to be both heart throbbing and romantic, this action takes place when a male character closes the distance of a female character until she is up against the wall with one or both hands placed on the wall to prevent her from running away from him. Furthermore, this intimate act is a way for a character to confront another character about his feelings and thoughts (and maybe sometimes for a kiss)
*Note: This action is just merely an act in shoujo manga and it may NOT be suitable in real life so do NOT apply it.

Figure 1- Source: Ao Haru Ride Manga

tumblr_npw7gowZYN1rb9a6wo2_500

  1. Bishie

Bishie or Bijin is a shortened term for bishounen (美少年) which stands for pretty young boys.

(Side note: For pretty young girls, they are referred to as bishoujo whereas in neutral terms, we call them Bijin [美人] regardless of the gender)

source: Kyoukai no kanata OVA

source: Kyoukai no kanata OVA

Ikemen イケメン

Ikemen is a slang used to describe people who that person refers to as handsome or cool.

Once again, arigatou gozaimasu for reading this column and for visiting the Otaku Corner. If you have any interesting topic to share, feel free to tell me 😀 Sore ja matta ne!

“Thank You”

By Li Jing

“Thank you”. Two simple words that can make someone feel appreciated and make someone’s day. Often we don’t realise the power of these words and how much they matter. Saying those words cost nothing, and yet what I’ve realised is that we’re stingy with them.

I realised this while I was in line to buy food in Ikea. There were ten people in front of me, and ten out of ten just took their food and walked away without saying a single word. Having parents who were once waiters, it had been drilled into me that it was especially appreciated when someone says thank you, so upon receiving my plate, I just murmured a simple thanks with a smile. It was 5 in the evening, the poor guy was probably there since 9, and judging from his expression, he seemed pretty out of it. The minute I said thank you, however, his mood instantly changed, his face lit up in a smile and he bade me good day.

It’s little things like that that made me feel like I’d done something good for the day.  Regardless of whether it’s the cleaners, the waiters, our own parents or teachers, sometimes all it takes is a simple thank you. A sincere thank you will always be better than an insincere gift.

These past two months were filled with days dedicated to appreciation; Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Teacher’s Day, and even International Best Friends Day. Looking at my peers, my siblings, my Instagram and Twitter account, I realise that we only ever show our appreciation to others on these ‘special’ days, myself included. So why not more often?

‘Appreciate what you have, before it turns into what you had’

No doubt this quote has been heard countless times throughout our lives, but we never truly put much thought into it. It probably would’ve just inspired us for a few minutes and then something else catches our attention and poof, there it goes.

Appreciation doesn’t have to be in the form of anything extravagant or an expensive gift. All it needs is sincerity. A simple hand-made card, with a short meaningful message or a “thank you” when they do something for you would beat a bouquet of roses just tossed in their direction (Not that I’m suggesting extravagant or expensive gifts are a big no, as long as those gifts too are thoughtful and given with sincerity).

Summing up, we need to appreciate those around us, even for the simplest things. Gratitude is short in supply nowadays. We’re in the age of growing up and finding ourselves, but often we forget those who helped us to find ourselves. It’s high time we take a step back and learn to appreciate the people and things around us before it’s too late.

4 Money-Friendly Ways To Show Her You Care

by Tiffany Hoo

It’s that time of the year where we celebrate the women who painstakingly carried us in their wombs for 9 months of their lives – Mother’s Day! Can’t afford that designer hand bag that she’s been eyeing as a present or that luxurious spa retreat she’s been wanting? Well, fear not! Here are a few ideas which will make a great present for her (and will not make a large dent in your wallets!)

  • The ‘Chore Coupon’

Remember how you used to give your mum the ‘Chore Coupon’ when you were a kid? For those who aren’t familiar with the idea (what have you been doing as a kid?), it was the best present we could have given to our mothers as kids! Hand her a piece of paper, with ‘1 hour of sweeping the floor’ (task would vary with our abilities as young kids then) written on it, and letting her sit back and relax while we did the task as promised. But as time aged us, such an idea seemed childish to us and we decided against this as a potential present idea. But in reality, this would be a great gift to her after working so hard throughout the day taking care of the household. You can help her with the daily chores in the house (tidying up the house, buying the groceries or babysitting your younger siblings!) and let her enjoy a day of relaxation befitting of the queen of your heart!

  • Make her a handmade gift

As cliché as it sounds, when it comes to presents, whether it’s for your partner, your friends or your own mother, it’s the thought that comes with the gift which makes it all the more valuable to the recipient. Even if your mom has been eyeing that super expensive designer handbag (which is still out of your reach even after juggling weeks of part-time jobs, unfortunately!), and only receives a handmade card from you, she’ll love the gift nevertheless! Sure, in monetary terms, the handbag definitely is more valuable than your handmade card. However, in her eyes, the card you personally crafted for her is a symbol of your sincerity and love, which outweighs the value of the handbag or any other material item anytime of the day.

  • Spend time with her

You don’t have to bring her to a posh 5-star restaurant or take her shopping in a high-end boutique to make her happy. Even a simple picnic at the neighbourhood park, with her favourite array of food, is enough to put a smile on her face! If picnics aren’t your thing, how about renting her favourite chick flick and organising your own family movie night? The possibilities are endless, but as long as you dedicate quality time to spend with your mum, she’ll feel like the happiest woman alive!

  • Say ‘Thank You!’

In this modern age, where most of our communications are through WhatsApp, WeChat and Skype, we often underestimate the power of a simple ‘thank you’. Although we often believe that mums should know how much we appreciate them without us voicing it out, verbally saying it has the magical ability to make her be assured of our appreciation even more! While you’re at it, throw in a hug or a peck on her cheek as well. It may seem like a small gesture to you, but to her, it speaks volumes!

Nevertheless, regardless of whether it is Mother’s Day or not, it is important to show the queen of your heart just how much she means to you every day and how much you value her being by your side as grow up. Showing her appreciation for the woman who carried you in her womb shouldn’t be shown on just one particular day, but expressed in any way possible any given time. So to all mothers out there, thank you for all you have done for us and happy Mother’s Day!

KEEP YOUR HEAD UP! 2015 – Part 2

by Chloe

Keep Your Head Up Campaign- 4.6.2015 [Day 3]

Day 3 of the event and things had been going well for the team. As it was the final day of the event, the team saved the best for the last. What better way to end a meaningful campaign than with a meet and greet session with three renowned bloggers of Nuffnang? Audrey Ooi, Bobo Stephanie and Careen Tan were invited to share their views and thoughts. As a participant of the Meet-and-Greet Session, I was lucky to have a little chat with them!

[M – Me; A – Audrey; B – Bobo; C – Careen]

M: Is this your first time attending such an event? What do you think about it?

A: Yeah. Initially, I didn’t know about it and I didn’t even know the reason behind it. After attending it, I think that it’s a good initiative to raise awareness about texting while driving as many of us don’t really think of it.

B: Yes. In my opinion, it’s good to bring out the awareness. Those who attended can also be those who are doing it. Hence, people will be more aware of it.

C: No, this isn’t the first time for me because I have spoken of entrepreneurship in KDU before. Personally, I think it’s a good initiative. Driving while texting is a topic that should be addressed as it will be helpful and good to spread the awareness.

M: What’s your opinion towards driving and texting?

A: Those who did it and don’t think about it have no right to get angry. I would feel annoyed about it and all of us shouldn’t do it.

B: It is dangerous. If it’s an emergency, the person would have called instead. Text messages can wait and it will be better than getting into danger.

C: It’s wrong. Mostly, we don’t see it as an offense. For people who’re busy, we tend to think that we can multitask and replying those messages is urgent. But, the truth is that those SMSes can wait and it’s not an excuse to be texting while driving.

M: What made you start blogging/ writing blogs?

A: Since primary school, I loved to write and it always has been something that I like. I started blogging in uni, although the initial purpose for blogging was just to keep in touch.

B: Well, I started blogging in college. To me, blogging is something to keep my life in a diary. I started writing about my lifestyle to writing about fashion.

C: It started off as a hobby before becoming a day-to-day habit. My blogs mostly contain my own feelings and memories. After a while, the readership just increased and more people began to read my blog. Even so, it is still a personal blog.

M: As writers, all of us must have gone through some sort of writers’ block. When that happens, how or where do you get your inspiration from?

A: Usually, I get my inspirations from my thoughts of the day. This also includes the events that happen around me.

B: As for me, interesting topics have been my inspiration. I like travelling and I attend events too. During events, I get to dress up and this has also been part of the inspiration to write my blogs.

C: Sometimes, we tend to have either too many things to write or nothing at all. I often read other blogs to get inspired. It also serves as a reminder of blogging. Hence, I would say that reading is my inspiration.

M: To those who have just started out or who want to be in this field, what would you advise/ tell them?

A: Just do it for the enjoyment and not for the fame or money.

B: Take blogging as an exposure. Furthermore, try to be honest, be passionate about it and just have fun.

C: Blogging is a passion. For example, if you don’t like it then don’t do it. My advice would be to just keep doing it. With passion, you can keep on going and keep it alive.

KEEP YOUR HEAD UP!2015 – Part 1 (Gallery)

by Chloe Kong

Pictures by Janine Ng

Edit/ Touch up by Chloe Kong

On 2.6.2015, a campaign was held to raise the awareness of texting while driving. From Slogan competitions to the educational bazaar, this three-days event was a success! Instead of words, let us show you the event through these pictures.