What is an Otaku? Otaku is derived from an honorific Japanese term for another's house or family (otaku) that is also used as an honorific second-person pronoun (roughly equivalent to usted in Spanish). The term was popularized in the English speaking world in William Gibson's 1996 novel Idoru, which has several references to otaku. In particular, the term was defined as 'pathological-techno-fetishist-with-social-deficit'. In modern Japanese slang, the term otaku refers to an overtly obsessive fan of any one particular theme, topic, or hobby. Common uses are anime otaku (one who sometimes enjoys many days of excessive anime watching with no rest) and manga otaku (a fan of Japanese graphic novels), pasokon otaku (personal computer geeks), gēmu otaku (playing video games), and wota (before referred as "idol otaku") that are extreme fans of idols, heavily promoted singing girls.
I didn’t participate in all or even most of the Okatuthon events. One that I regret missing was the Masquerade. What is a masquerade? According to their official site [http://forums.otakuthon.com/viewtopic.php?t=1751], the Otakuthon Masquerade is an amateur costume competition for anime/manga costumes, gaming costumes and costumes related to these medias. It is an opportunity to see cosplayers show off their spectacular costumes, craftsmanship and creativity.
Two types of entries are presented: skits and walk-on. Skits are short theatrical performances of up to one minute in length in which participants wear costumes and perform a skit based on their favorite anime or manga. These presentations may be funny or serious, parody or action and may use characters from only one show or many, but they are always creative and entertaining.What are cosplayers? Cosplayers (kosupure), a portmanteau of the English words "costume" and "roleplay", is a Japanese subculture centered on dressing as characters from manga, anime, tokusatsu and video games and, less commonly, Japanese live action television shows, fantasy movies, or Japanese pop music bands. However, in some circles, "cosplay" has been expanded to mean simply wearing a costume.
In Japan, "cosplay" as a hobby is usually an end unto itself. Like-minded people gather to see others' costumes, show off their elaborate handmade creations, take lots of pictures, and possibly participate in best costume contests [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cosplay].
Thanks to a blatant display of nepotism, I was able to attend the Saturday Night Dance, where the J-rock band Sukoshi Yoshi (where my son Asparagus was the drummer and dj) gave an electrifying performance, with a breakdancing demonstration by B-girl Lynx and B-boy W.D. Forty (my other son Derrell) that brought the house down. Many cosplayers were at the dance and graciously posed for the above pictures.
Final comments :
3.- I was really surprised by the high number of black otakus. I'd never imagine that they would be interested in geeky stuff like anime and manga. Aren't blacks supposed to be the coolest race? Hip hop, yes. Otaku, who knew?