14 years ago, I would approach anime with a wide-eyed fervor of a virgin approaching a long fabled crush. 14 years later, anime is as much of a guilty pleasure to pass the time as any other grown man with pass times including full-contact sports, fantasy leagues and beer drinking.
Hailing from the west-then-east then back to west coast, anime has been a staple pass time over the decades in which I sought out shows as early as Street Fighter and Ninja Scroll. Two house-hold names that are sure to spark conversations regarding the nostalgia of VHS and bootleg copies of Neon Genesis Evangelion.
Seeing as anime was in such a niche forest, thick with mystery for the funny expressions and terrible english dubbing, many of my inclusion to invest in region free dvd players and imports died as I grew further and further into adult-hood. I visited a near-by con twice -- then slowly fluttered away for a few years to be 'an adult'.
Discussion on anime and anime stereotypes are often a crux of mine. I enjoy writing, some of the writing involves a plot line centering the development of the spunky hero or the quiet brooding female character who secretly is soft and kind. I have often turned to anime as an escape -- a 'turn off your brain and march through episodes' if you will. In fact, I have drilled through entire 20+ episode seasons in a matter of days once the resources are reliable and available.
Due to this level of machine-like efficiency, I find I have difficulties recalling otherwise forgettable characters that young girls often 'gush' over -- but I am quite aware that anime characters are still 'cartoons'.
I dabbled in drawing anime faces or the manga artist style for a few years but the simplified take on the human anatomy grew boring to me and I flocked to writing fanfiction instead. All of the experience, rounding out with an inclusion of a massive debt behind collecting volumes of physical manga media -- I now sit among the other connoisseurs of great anime series who I cannot mention.
On a more positive note-- anime has encouraged me to be diligent, frugal and detail oriented in my quest to fund, keep abreast and enjoy my hobby.