If you mention the word ‘youth’, especially within the context of anime, ‘school life’ is perhaps the most probable things that came up in your mind. Heck, the two word are practically one and inseparable by this point. To a degree, anime industry seems to capitalize on this for a very long time. In every season, there’s at least one anime centered around school life, many LN adaptation features a magical high school nowadays, and the most magical things in an anime world seems to happen in an highschool or to a highschooler for contrived reasons. Pretty reflective over the fact that:
A) Teenager has always been anime main demographic, and
B) There’s also fake nostalgia factor at play for adult viewer, which somewhat makes sense considering highschool are probably the happiest time for many Japanese. Not necessarily means highschool are a fun time for all of them, many students are often under constant pressure to get a good grade and higher education after all, but considering monotone office life and batshit insane work hours are what most adults in Japan go through every day of their life, plus the social pressure of having to go out for a drink with your co-worker every time said work hours is over (remember the after-work bar scenes in Shirobako? Turns out there’s a dark side to that), your guess is as good as mine in which phase in life they prefer.
Unfortunately, any chance and possibility of any sorts of magical encounter happening in my ‘youth’ have pretty much closed its gates now, because as of May 15th 2015, a certain announcement has arrived in my mothers laptop. Bringing a certain notification that I apparently have graduated.
Which, in anime world, is another way of saying that my ‘youth’ is ‘over’.
Looking back, my daily high school life can be said to be normal. There’s some great times, sad times, some moments where I made mistakes, some regrets etc. So, I pretty much didn’t get involved in any situation that’s out of the norm. I didn’t join a literature club and get superpowers, there’s no secret school project involving the creation of a perfect human that I have to fight, there’s no supernatural circumstances which led me to get a harem, and the list went on and on. While there’s certainly drama, its more generally about the standard teenage conflict revolving around insecurity, social pressure coming from both my parent and my peers, and so on.
In my school life, there’s period in my life where I always longed for one of those days to come. The day where I revealed to be the chosen one on a certain prophecy and has to get into a battle with my fated enemy or perhaps where I suddenly whisked away into fantasy world and have to become the hero. Chuuni delusions, as you might called it.
But not all of them has to involved getting absorbed into some fantasy setting. Sometimes I just wish I had a alluring encounter with the ‘one for my life’ under the shining star. You know Kousei’s opening line from KimiUso? The “I met the girl under the full-bloomed cherry blossoms, and my fate has begun to change” one? As blunt as that line is, I wish I could say that without any semblance of irony and lies.
In order to escape my own boredom and problems, I’ve always thought about those things. But the funny thing is that as you began to socialize and connect with other people (or just, you know, grow up), the allure of stuck in a fantasy setting suddenly diminished little by little. Because when you get down to it, as appealing and ‘colorful’ as non-ordinary life sounds, the valuable tangible bonds you’ve created with people around you is much more fulfilling in your heart. And by the time you realized it, suddenly, having just an ordinary life is probably not bad as you might think it is.
While my school life didn’t exactly go the way I wanted (then again, who does?), all in all, it could be worse. By the end of the day, what I wanted aren’t exactly what I needed, and I’ll always cherished every single glimpse of happiness that happened in my ordinary youth life.
And with that, I shall now officially close a chapter in my life to begin anew in college. I’ll end this post with a certain quote from my recently read shonen manga.
See ya 😀
-Besides, if we’re being completely honest, suddenly find yourself in a fantasy setting might be more hassle than it’s worth.
-Also, happy fasting for all of you Muslims out there 🙂
-Some quick fix. I’ve just received information that many Japanese can only relax and goof around after college exam and during college. Also much of anime is targeted toward 18 above, so take my word in my intro with as much grain of salt as possible. For further detail, please reference atelier emily post, in the post I like section. (its the one above). Thank you.