What I have been able to do is read manga. It's a lot more convenient than sitting through an entire episode of anime, plus you get more out of the story.
Despite how many guys would interpret the title it's actually not what you might think it to be. The story revolves around your typical college graduate working an average businessman's job in Japan. Well there's a nice prequel of a love story for this guy but much of it is undisclosed in the manga. It focuses around the present where the guy ends up taking care of his daughter that he was never aware of until the mother had died over seas in America. Of course there's a lot more too this, but that's the basic beginning of the story.
It's a legit Slice of Life/Seinen story. Since I'm not in high school anymore I predict that the Seinen genre will attract me a lot more than the usual Shounen. The combination of Slice of Life and Seinen is like, the most comforting cup of tea you can think of. It's just really relaxing and relieves stress. Plus it's also really thought provoking in a positive way. Only 3 or 4 years from now I'll be out completely living on my own and I'll be alone most likely. This manga really captures one way life could be like, for typical average salaryman in Japan.
I'm pretty sure a lot of people will first read the manga and put it off as a really boring and unexciting series. Shounen and Shoujo drama lovers alike absolutely love the hardcore twists and turns that drama plotlines tend to take. My Girl on the other hand is very mellow. It's a lot more real and reasonable than the crazy hard-hitting twists you would see in other dramas. Drama is still drama of course. Seinen as a genre needs that "reality check" sort of drama from time to time to keep manga plotlines in check. Otherwise we'd be having a large host of manga series where people are having sex every chapter, betraying, cheating, killing, and then occasionally committing a psychotic suicide *shrug*. I've read so many Seinen books with those themes and frankly I'm pretty tired of it. My Girl, like Seitokai no Ichizon, is a good break from it all. A break that we otakus particularly enjoy.
But of course Anime will always be on the border of the line of reality and fantasy. That's what has made it so popular as opposed to cartoons that are too realistic and comics that way too fictional to our tastes. So far the story of My Girl is very smooth, with the few occasional bumps in our protagonist's life. It's at its 15th chapter at the moment so I predict that the 20th or 25th chapter the story will take a turn, and give us some hard dilemmas to read through. I'll be really interested in how intense the dilemmas will be. Since the series is very real and close to the lives of people at the "Seinen" age, the author will have to come up with some just as real and play it off appropriately. After all there's a sweet little girl in the manga, putting in any rough drama is just sick and unnecessary =P. I'd go into more detail of what I predict will happen but there would be some spoilers...
All in all, it's been a really good read while I've been busy putting together my research on business stuff... I really wish my group could have done a case study on a more interesting business =P. If I ever had the chance to work on a case that involved Anime I'd be friggin bouncing off the walls with excitement, but that might also make me a little biased towards some things. Not everyone likes anime the way I do =(.
While reading My Girl I just remembered that I won't be in America for a long time, starting my next fall semester. I was always unsatisfied with the life I have in Massachusetts. I love my friends and all but I feel trapped in this one state and country =(. I haven't dormed yet so I also have my parents dragging me around. But next year I'll be free, FROM EVERYTHING. Dorming will get me away from family, yes, but I'm still breathing the same air as them and anyone else.
I remember one conversation I had with an old friend. It was like in our junior year or something. We were like just chatting about how college life is going to be a huge boost in freedom and how we can get away from old acquaintances that we just don't want to meet anymore. I went out and said bluntly "I want to move far away and start completely from scratch, even away from good friends like you." I probably worded it a lot differently but I remember saying that, it probably was a little cold but that's how I really felt (usually I just keep it to myself =P). I know I have really good friends in MA but I seriously want to get the fuck out. There's too many people who think the world revolves around them, when the truth is that they're just like anyone else living in the same city and state. So once I move to Japan, and live there for a semester and then move to my next study abroad program, I'll be more able and more open-minded to listen and take-in the things people have problems with. Whenever I find myself getting mixed up in other people's drama, I feel bitter and very annoyed. Going to another country will probably help me to accept the fact that it's a waste of time, and to just walk away even if it's a real close friend. But of course it depends on how real and impacting the drama is, if you just lost your job and you're in debt, and you're my friend, I'll do everything I can to help you. If you're depressed for weeks over a boyfriend or girlfriend, my reaction will be */facepalm*, only until the person seriously tries to commit suicide I'll actually say something. Doing something could also get me in trouble, cold yes, but it's the survival of the fittest.
Sophia University, man I wonder what kind of people I'll meet there.