バンギン

Moe Moe (萌え萌え)

Moe Moe (萌え萌え) means very “moe.” Coming from anime & manga otaku or “geeks” (オタク), moe means both fetish and (non-sexual) hobby. Love the ambiguity of Japanese. Wikipedia uses the example of 眼鏡っ娘萌え, meganekko-moe, “glasses-girl moe.” Unlike the U.S., eye-glasses in cartoons and in real life can inspire fetishized desire. For the ladies only, there’s even a Tokyo “eye-glass and suits” male host bar called Love-all.

In Japan, otaku moe has a surprisingly large influence on more general (albeit) perverted culture and into mainstream language. In other words, you don’t have too be an anime/manga fan to appreciate and adopt some of the words and “hobbies” these fantasy worlds generate for adult viewers.

In my Nakano hikikomori moments (ひきこもりみたい)– a reference to Japanese shut-ins who remain locked in their rooms at their parents for 6 months or more– I’ve found the internet an amazing resource for words that are not covered in my college-level Japanese language textbook. Japanese themselves seem to love the discovery and use of new words; my sister-in-law Yoko told me how delighted she was to learn about o-nii-kei (お兄系) from this very blog (and she was the one who introduced me to gyaru-o and Men’s Egg).

In my exploration of moe moe, there’s been no better guide writing in English than a blogger named Bangin (バンギン). He describes his blog, titled “Japanese words of anime fans, by anime fans, for anime fans: On this blog, I will introduce and explain Japanese slangs, Japanese-English words, or 2ch words, or any other popular words among anime fans (or whoever).”

With rain in the forecast for the next few days, I’ll be devoting a number of posts to words, ideas and moe I’ve discovered on Bangin-san’s blog. Of course, any misunderstandings or errors are mine alone. Thank you, Bangin Sensei. バンギン先生ありがとうございました!

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