I’ve been on a Genshiken high lately. I’ve been enjoying the adventures of the new club members (and old) in Genshiken Naidame. I’ve also been revisiting the anime series regularly.
Each episode of Genshiken ends with a shot in the clubroom during the closing credits. The member’s actions are a little different each time. Episode six has Kasukabe and Sasahara playing Puyo Pop. That specific ending, along with the lyrics to the closing song, “Biidama” by Saori Atsumi, are very nostalgic for me. They remind me of doing the same with friends when I was a teenager playing Street Fighter 2 at the house of my pastor’s son.
We took no detours or shortcuts
And we weren’t afraid of what tomorrow would bring
As we kept walking down Inogashira Street late at night
Only vivid dreams extended deep into the shadows
I love these small moments between friends. I feel similarly about a time when I went out with these same guys and watched Rush Hour in the theaters. As a group of Asian Americans, it was an almost monumental movie for us – and we absolutely loved it. Ah, the nostalgia!
The word “nostalgia” has a tone of sadness, as we look back longingly knowing that things will never be the same. Well, that much is probably true. But perhaps we can also look back with some joy as well.
It’s in these moments – these small moments – where we taste some fulfillment. Where we know perhaps why we’re here, alive, breathing, interacting. These little moments that get to me the most aren’t ones where I’m alone – they are times when I’m with people. They are relationship-based.
We aren’t quite grown up
Simple but complicated glistening like marbles
The time we could see from there sparkled
Even if nothing big happened
Perhaps that’s no surprise – even loners like myself can admit that life is largely about our relationships – with friends, family, co-workers, fellow students, community, humanity, and God.
And I think on this day, especially, it might be meaningful to think about relationships – to think about the “little moments” and the big feelings associated with them. And further, maybe we cannot only wax nostalgic, but respond to it, and go and do something for those whom we love.
What we see from the marbles in our hands
now is a little different
But they shine faintly nearby.