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Introduction and Taiga Fun

Introduction and Taiga Fun
17 Dec 2009 23:04:10

Hello! My name is Aaron (pluvia33) and this is my first blog post on My Anime Shelf. After being here for a little over a week I've finished adding all of my figures to the database. Yay! According to My Shelf, I have 60 figures that I've spent well over $2000.00 on. And that's just the rough yen-to-dollar conversion of the manufacturer's price. Factor in import mark-up and shipping costs and I've probably spent closer to $2500.00 on my collection.... But it's worth it. The figures are all so nice and pretty. Anyway, I figured for my first post I'll give a quick little introduction of myself and talk a little about and share some pictures of my favorite figure, my Max Factory 1/8 Taiga figure from Toradora.

As I said, my name is Aaron. pluvia33 is my standard username so if you Google it you can find nearly my entire internet existence. I'm 25 years old and live in the United States. I've been interested in anime since I was 12 and have been collecting anime as a serious fan for the past 8 years or so. After graduating high school in 2002 I went to college for two years. During that time I studied basic Japanese language and discovered fansubs. I ended up dropping out of college for personal and financial reasons. I spent a little over a year working crappy jobs while living with my parents until I ended up enlisting in the US Air Force, shipping off to basic training on December 5, 2005. During that time I had my living expenses provided for and had a decent steady pay check. With a good amount of disposable income my anime, manga, and figure collections began to grow until they took up more than 11 five shelf book cases (my cataloged anime collection can be found here and my manga here). Now I've recently finished my 4 year enlistment and am looking for employment as a civilian again. Hopefully I'll get a new job soon so I can continue to support my expensive otaku hobby.

So my favorite figure is my lovely Taiga Aisaka figure by Max Factory. The figure is based on the cover illustration of the first light novel in the Toradora! series, as you can see in this picture I took:


Now this figure came out in December 2007, nearly a year before the anime would begin airing in Japan. At the time I wasn't very heavy into light novels. Even now I usually don't read any until after I've seen an anime for it and become interested in the story. So when the anime for Toradora came out in October 2008 I loved it and remembered seeing this figure of Taiga online. So I tried hunting it down only to find out that it was already near impossible to get. That made me sad. But as the anime neared its end in March 2009 I had a plan. I was living in New Mexico at the time, stationed there by the Air Force. I figured it was the closest I'll probably ever be to the west cost so I decided that I'd be going to Anime Expo in Los Angeles California with my roommate (who had been to Anime Expo before) and some friends from the area. So on that July 4th weekend I was going to search the dealer's room high and low for my Taiga figure and I was going to have it no matter what! And I was lucky enough to find it. It was horribly over priced, I think it came to $131 total after tax. Kind of a high mark-up for a 5,800 yen figure, but I really didn't care. I was happy. Mission Accomplished! Yay!!

Anyway, when I brought the figure home and put it on my shelf a good friend of mine named Dan began making jokes about kidnapping Taiga's tiger and replacing it with an animal cracker or something. I've really missed Dan and my old roommate Weasel since I've left the Air Force and moved back to Ohio. So when I began taking good quality pictures of my figure collection I decided to do a little tribute just for them....


Oh, little Taiga, what are you doing all by yourself? Hmmm, what's this? Heheheh....
"H-Hey! What are you doing with my tiger?!!"


Don't worry, it's not like I'm going to take it and leave you empty handed. Here, take this.
"What?! An animel cracker?! No! Give me back my tiger!"


Hmmm, maybe you like the frosted kind better?
"No! I said give it back!"


How about icing?
"I said no! I want my tiger!"


Oh, maybe you prefer pink icing?
"Well.... it does look kind of goo- No!"


Maybe you like gummy bears, then?
"No!"


Reese's Pieces?
"No! Don't make me kick your ass!"
Well, I guess there is one thing way I'll give you back your tiger.... *evil grin*


"Kya~!! Y-y-y-yo-you took my skirt now?!!!" *embarrassment and fury rising*
Hey, you got your tiger back now. I think you look better this way! ^_^


"Hey! Stop taking pictures! Give me my skirt back!"
Why don't you just stand up and take it back yourself?


"I-i-it's e-e-e-embarrassing!!"
I don't see the big deal. I can see just about everything from here anyway.... Except....


*flip*
"Ahhhh! You bastard!!"
Muwahahahaha!! Now I have your tiger again, too!


"Stop right there!"
Wha- Who are you?!
"We think it's about time you stop harassing Mommy!"
*SEVERE BEATING!*


~And all is right in the world~


And that's all for now. Hope you enjoyed the pictures and such. Until next time. Laters!
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usagi_joou
usagi_joou (Russia)
17 Dec 2009, 21:17:37
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Yay! Nice to meet you again and know more about you! When I've seen your photo, I immediately thought about army (can't clearly tell you why^^), but then I thought "No way! He's an otaku! Otaku and army - something really hard to imagine together^^)
But you're really cool! I'm 26 and I'm still living with my parents, thought I've got a good job. See, it is common in Russia. We russian-jin go through a LOT of trouble to get our own place to stay. As I heard, Moscow is one of the most expensive cities speaking of real estate prices. And that goes to renting too.
If it is not classified info (how'd Mikuru-chan say that - kensuku jiiku desu?^_~) what did you do while in the Forces?
And what do you want to do now, as a civilian?
I'm too old for this shit, ain't I?
pluvia33
pluvia33 (USA)
17 Dec 2009, 23:07:51
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Hahaha, well the Air Force is considered the Military for the smarter people in the US. The Army and Marines are for the others. XP And if it was the lack of hair that made you think army, I was actually shaving my head more than two years before I shipped out. Did it for reasons completely unrelated (mostly because I hate getting hair cuts), but it was convenient when I joined. And there are actually more otaku in the military (at least Air Force) than you'd think. My roommate was almost as much of a fan as me and I even ran a weekly anime club screening on base for a year and a half. As far as what my job was in the military, I never dealt with anything classified. I was in Financial Management. Basically a career field based around managing the military budget and making sure all of the other Air Force guys and girls got paid correctly. In my specific job I was kind of like a bank manager. And now since I have the experience I'm trying to get a government job in the same field as a civilian. I have applications in for two positions, but haven't heard anything back yet....
usagi_joou
usagi_joou (Russia)
21 Dec 2009, 01:23:40
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Sorry for the delay. We have a 10 days of pure holidays due to New Year and Christmas (it is 7th of January, cause our Russian Church is using the Julian Calendar), so we all strive to finish every project going on until 31 of Dec.
Were there many girls in the Air Force when you were there?
And government work, wow! It is exactly where I've started my career^^ In fact, I'm a certified government worker, I've spent 5 years in the Moscow University of Management, specializing in government and municipal administration^^ I've been working for Moscow administration for two years after graduation. But now I'm as far from it as can be, working in a film company, writing scripts and maintaining sites.
BTW, did you get any response from employers by now?
I'm too old for this shit, ain't I?
pluvia33
pluvia33 (USA)
21 Dec 2009, 01:50:59
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Well, if I had to give a rough number, I'd say somewhere between 10 and 30% of military personnel in the Air Force are female. Although in my office the ratio seemed to be a little higher since we did administrative work, usually about a 50/50 split. Although most of the women were older, higher ranking people. Every since I had joined the office we've had nothing buy guys come in as far as the fresh new recruits go. The last batch of 4 guys that came in before I left were pretty annoyed by this fact. ^_^"

And no, I haven't head back from my applications yet. I've heard that the process can take a while and I'm sure that the holidays aren't helping to speed it along either. All I can really do is wait and hope for now and see about putting in more applications.
usagi_joou
usagi_joou (Russia)
17 Dec 2009, 21:18:51
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And BTW! Pictures are super-cool^____^
I'm too old for this shit, ain't I?
pluvia33
pluvia33 (USA)
17 Dec 2009, 23:08:32
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Thanks. ^_^
Glory
Glory (Russia)
18 Dec 2009, 07:09:42
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A-ha-ha, that was great! :D

Most of completed models have that serious or epic look, that kinda prevent you from playing or making fun out of them. But Taiga is cutie! And Aaron has a sweet tooth ~^_^~
Yay, and you can actually use her for holding small precious things. I don't know about men, but girls usually have jewelry and so on ^^ I also like her childish pantsu :)

I hope, you'll get that job you want. Don't worry too much, things we truly need usually find us themselves. That's the law of gravity :D

P.S.: Suddenly a new thought pops out. Mb some of us should write similar introductions? Cause we immediately engaged in a small talk instead :)
The rain beats hard at my window
While you so softly do sleep...
pluvia33
pluvia33 (USA)
18 Dec 2009, 07:44:13
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Yeah, I initially just wanted the basic animal crackers just to do the pictures, but then there were three different kinds of animal crackers, then I saw the gummy bears, then when I was buying M&M's for my dad for XMas I saw the Reese's Pieces and really wanted some. XD
Hmmm, I don't have a lot of really precious small things, but I can think of a few other things that might be amusing to have Taiga hold. Maybe I'll post a random "Taiga Holding?" picture every now and then. :)

Haha, yeah, internet socialization is kind of amusing sometimes. It would be nice if we can all learn a little more about each other. And thanks for the well wishes towards my job hunt. Things should work out, hopefully. ^_^
usagi_joou
usagi_joou (Russia)
21 Dec 2009, 01:26:15
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Absolutely DO the Taiga holding series! It should be a surprise every time with us here thinking - WHAT IN THE WORLD SHE WILL HOLD NEXT TIME?! ^_____^
I'm too old for this shit, ain't I?
pluvia33
pluvia33 (USA)
21 Dec 2009, 01:52:04
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Haha, yeah, I think I will. I already know what the first picture has to be. XD
Vallefor
Vallefor (Russia)
19 Dec 2009, 04:55:10
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Nice photo session! :)

The photo that goes before the last one looks very cool! I really can sense the energy of angry children who have come to defend their mother! *_*

About US Air Force.. are there any tests that you need to pass to join it? Or you can just come and say that you want to serve in the Air Force?
MySQL server has gone away
pluvia33
pluvia33 (USA)
19 Dec 2009, 05:28:31
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There is a written test and a medical exam you have to take in order to join any branch of the military here. The written test is divided into four areas of knowledge: General, Administrative, Electrical, and Mechanical. Depending on how well in score on the test in the four areas determines what jobs are available to you, and if you score too badly you might not be able to join the branch of the military you were enlisting in. The medical exam isn't anything major. They pretty much just want to check to see if you have any serious medical problems that would prevent you from being able to fight. They also make you take a drug test. But really, the tests aren't very hard so as long as you don't have any major physical problems, aren't a complete idiot (or just really horrible at taking tests), and don't do drugs, you mainly just really have to want to join.

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