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Friday, July 20, 2012

Sasuke fans are STILL the best fans in the world!

All-Star Shingo Yamamoto 山本進悟 - July 18, 2012 ©Pittsburgher

July has been great!  Though I'm not the one visiting Japan.. LOL  As I blogged before.. there's now a trend!  Matt Iseman started a funny trend that quite frankly I love! It started out with Nagano and Matt posing for a pic to say hello to me back in April (during ANW4) and then earlier this month Yuuji posed for mahoro also saying hello to me and now Pittsburgher got me two photos: one with Shingo Yamamoto and one with Yuuji again!

Sasuke Grand Champion Yuuji Urushihara 漆原裕治 (Cliffer #3) - July 20, 2012 ©Pittsburgher

I'm honored and thoroughly thrilled at the fact that this is happening!  It's really sweet that they were thinking of other fans along with visiting Sasuke stars during their respective vacations.  Though I'm sure Yuuji is thinking that "Hello Arsenette" is a new internet meme.. LOL  I'm totally real!  Seems he likes taking serious pictures so he had to be coaxed to smile.. LOL Thanks Yuuji for being such a good sport!  Thanks to Pitts for persevering as well as the earlier time to meet didn't pan out.  Though it's good that we can at least talk to him via Twitter even if some of the language gap can be severe.  Still. he was ready... check out the freshly waxed brows! Mwaahahahaha ehem :)


video

Monday, July 2, 2012

Sasuke fans are the best fans in the world!

Sasuke Grand Champion Yuuji Urushihara 漆原裕治 (Cliffer #3)

I know I've mentioned how much the Sasuke community is the best in the world but, lemme say it again.  SASUKE FANS ARE THE BEST FANS IN THE WORLD!  To explain why I'm saying this again, I have to refer to the latest photo I received.  To explain the story I have to go a couple months back.  I received a private message through SMF asking me if I knew the best way to contact Yuuji to set up a fan meeting (if it was even possible) at the store where he works.  This couple was going to Japan for a once in a lifetime vacation.  The wife wrote to me hoping to get at least a way to contact him for a special treat while in Tokyo, Japan.  It took some doing but it was thanks to Yuuji's addition to twitter a few months back that made it even possible (along with some desperate tweets at the end to some of the STQ'ers also on twitter LOL).  We unfortunately had the experience of crossing wires and missing times (they arrived at the store during the weekend.. which they unfortunately found out.. is closed.. /cry) but finally they were able to meet early morning Monday in front of the store before it opened.  I'm so happy!  That alone was wonderful to hear as I witnessed the exchange between the two on twitter on times, etc.  What I didn't expect was that photo above! LOL
All-Star Makoto Nagano 長野誠 and ANW4 Announcer Matt Iseman in Las Vegas for the taping of American Ninja Warrior ©Matt Iseman
It mirrors the recent photo from ANW4 from Matt Iseman when he cheerfully went along with my wild goose chase trying to find Nagano in Vegas (when he didn't even know he was there! LOL).  The difference between the signs was evident though.. look at Yuuji's sign and Nagano's sign.. Yuuji's sign was all printed out in cute paper!  They had it all planned out! :)  Awwwwwww That makes me grin from ear to ear!!!!  Not that Matt's sign was at all a problem.. I totally went bonkers when I saw that improv. :) It's the fact that both times they were thinking of me during their own personal meeting.  I can't even describe the feeling of being included like that.  That and the fact that both Sasuke Champions were willing participants in such a thing.  It's just too KAWAII!

Sasuke 21 Shirt sent to me in 2008
Over the past few years I've been fortunate to meet (even if via skype, email, phone, IM, etc.) with various people around the world from all walks of life, ages, races, etc.  Even before I ever started this blog this has been happening with Sasuke fans around the world. We all share one thing in common.  The generosity to share our experience with each other. That's something I've noticed big time with Sasuke.  The Sasuke spirit is about sharing our passion with as many people as possible and in as many ways our imagination can think of.  Sasuke is very personal.  From training for it, to cheering others to do well.  The sharing part is something that seems different from every other "fan" experience I've ever had before.  From the beginning when one person went on behalf of many to Chibipa waaaaaay back in 2008 JUST to deliver gifts and well wishes to Nagano when he was in the USA for the very first time.  She didn't have to and it certainly wasn't exactly planned that way, but we each received personally autographed notes and sent to us personally (without our knowledge beforehand) via mail after the event had finished. Heck, we even received a video thanking all of us for thinking of him during his visit.  The same year another fan sent me a coveted shirt from Sasuke (which at this point is probably a collector's shirt given that they don't exist for sale anymore) and shared dozens of photos from behind the scenes of Sasuke.

STQ'er Tomohiro Kawaguchi 川口朋広, Sasuke Champion Yuuji Urushihara 漆原裕治 and Sasuke Finalist Kouji Hashimoto 橋本 亘司 ©Kouji Hashimoto
Heck I've been given exclusive access to events via video JUST for my blog!  It's happened before with Nagano and Takeda in Odaiba, or Nagano and Yuuji in the Apple Store event promoting the Sasuke Iphone game.  And recently people sending me their photos to be included in event coverage from Japanese people who have never met me before in their life!  Even Sasuke competitors themselves have sent information, well wishes, tweets, etc. all because of our mutual love for Sasuke.  The list of sharing goes far beyond my blog and certainly not exclusive to me. Even before my time blogging this has been happening in the Sasuke community.  Signed photos, notes to each other, tweets, emails, waves and shoutouts from complete strangers around the world.. these things for other people don't exactly happen in fandom very often. I don't ever recall people getting famous celebrities sign in masse to other people other than themselves and their close friends/family.. I mean I'm sure it happens.. but not with the frequency of Sasuke. I guess it's because of what it is at it's core.  Sasuke's Mantra is "Ordinary people doing extraordinary things".  I guess that also applies the fandom. For that, I'm truly grateful :)


Thank so much to Mahoro888 and of course Yuuji Urushihara for sharing in their fan experience with me :) I'm happy that such a special fan moment even happened and even more for sharing the experience with those of us who might never personally get the opportunity.

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