Sunday, June 11, 2006

Figure Otaku

Among other things, I'm a figure Otaku, and I don't even mind using that word when describing myself. I always think of 'Otaku' as meaning more or less just 'nerd' when it's applied to me - an Otaku doesn't have to be a 'freeter' - and figure collecting is defiintely 'geek chic' in my book. Someone once said that rule #2 is 'don't get high on your own supply' (I think rule #1 was 'never underestimate the other guys greed...'). Rule #2, is of course, impossible to follow when so many cool figures keep coming in for the store.

The trouble with being an Anime 'anything' collector is that ever present problem of space. Where do you put all those DVD's? Where do you find another shelf for manga? Where am I going to find more wall space to hang that new cel? Where the hell am I going to put all these new figures...

...sooner or later your going to be headed out to buy yet another bookcase, DVD rack, curio cabinet, whatever. Then it's not too long after that you discover you need to move your collection into a larger room. Once that is no longer an option, you'll just need a bigger house...

So, I bet you didn't know that it's Anime collectors that really drive today's real estate market. :-)

We had a new house built in 2003 (a whole separate story - trust me, never have a house built), and one of the things that I made sure I had in the new house was a manly library where I could warehouse my ever growing collection of Anime figures and books. I have several barrister bookcases (you know - the ones that have glass doors that fold up and slide in), and they are laid out with every other shelf being books and manga, and the other 50 percent set aside for figures. I even added halogen under counter lights to the figure shelves so that the displays look impressive.

Before my Mom passed away in 1998, one of her most treasured possessions was a beautiful antique turtlewood desk that used to be in her living room. I inherited that desk, and it now resides in my library, and ends up being the holding coral for the new figures that have come in (see above) - until I find the time to categorize them and set them up the way I want to in my bookcases. I have a rather odd system in setting them up that goes by size, color, series, and of course, the characters importance in the Anime (prominent characters tend to go towards the front, where characters with supporting roles might be further back).

I simply cannot keep the collection from growing, and every time I say this is the last figure something else comes in that I just must have - which is just about everything. Right now I collect both polystone resin and polyvinyl figures (PVC figures have really increased in quality over the past few years), and I probably have maybe 600 figures total - so many in fact that relocating them from our last house became a real problem, and back then I only had maybe half as many. Check this out: I even have a rider on my HO insurance for them (and my cel collection). With about 8-10 new additions a month, I figure I'm good space wise for maybe 2 more years. After that, I suppose this house will have to go on the market too...

...and I'd probably have to hire a crew of people just to come pack them up for the move... -_^

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