Weird Things About Pokémon Anime


Last updated on 31 Aug, 2016.

I shall update this post as I watch more episodes.

I started watching Pokémon anime because of Pokémon Go. I liked the TV series and found it quite funny but there are some weird things in there and I am sure, I don’t get some things due to cultural differences. However, I am really glad that they did not edit it out when the series was dubbed in English. I wonder if these would be considered kid appropriate even though all the kids were watching it.

The weird things don’t make me want to stop watching this series because I really enjoy it and it makes me laugh. It is cute and heartwarming and has some lessons thrown in. Besides, I love these little quirks 🙂

Season 1

  • 10-year olds leaving home to be trainers alone in the world! Hey, it is a fictional world. Anything is possible.
  •  Ep. 20 (Beauty & the beach)

Ash meets his mom after 2 months on the road and they never hug or touch! His mom was physically closer to the prof. throughout the episode than to her own son. Ash always hugs his pokémon though!

Same episode, there is a beauty contest and only this part is still in Japanese and not dubbed. James (a guy) who is dressed as a woman and claims his beauty does not lie in a man. He often likes to dress as a woman. Maybe, a great introduction to kids about gender fluidity and cross dressers?!

Then, James says ‘service, service’ in Japanese (It said service in the subs) and presses some button on his bikini and his breasts inflate a lot.

Everyone cheers for them and James holds his large breasts and says to Misty (who is around 13-14 years old) – ‘You participated 10 years too early’! Look at Misty’s face – She is devastated by this!

 

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; The subtitles say:You participated 10 years too early!

Note – Points 3,4,5 are from the same beach beauty contest scene. 

  • Ep. 34 The Kangaskhan Kid was super bizarre.

Fathers dangling 3 year olds from the windows of a helicopter and accidentally dropping the baby in the jungle.

The kids carrying 2 adults on a palanquin kinda thing because the adults don’t want to walk in the jungle.  Why couldn’t they drive?

Misty smacking a kid who barely reaches up to her waist.

The father hitting his 6/7 year old with a wooden log on the head! Then, all characters justify it as a good thing because it helped bring his memory back ha ha.

When the kid regains consciousness, the father opens his coat and shirt, shows his bare chest and asks ‘My boy, remember papa?’! What was that for, I wonder he he.

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Tommy, my boy
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Remember papa?

These adults who cannot even walk in the jungle because it is too hard decide to live in the jungle forever.

  • Ep 47 A Chansey operation

The adult male doc says ‘I can never say no to a pretty face‘ when Misty pleads for them to treat Pikachu. It is not like he is calling her a cute little kid but more in an adult dating kinda way (she must be around 12-14 years old). Even Misty confirm this when she comments to Brock ‘Looks like the doc is not the only one who likes pretty faces‘ because Brock is hitting on every single woman he can find.

  • Ep. 48 Holy matrimony

The underground room where rich Jessie tries to make James a ‘gentleman’ seemed to hint toward BDSM from the stuff in the room to the way rich Jesse and Jame’s parents talked.

The Need for Independence & Control


I was reading Atul Gawande’s ‘Being Mortal’ when this hit me.

The author discusses how old people became depressed being in old age homes as there was loss of independence and privacy. They were being treated like kids – the home tells you when to get up and when to eat and what to eat. This is why assisted living in the original sense (the author talks about how assisted living as a concept changed over years) became popular because people could live in their own home by their own rules. The medical system and the oldies families were concerned with safety while the old peoples were more concerned about living the way they pleased with nobody dictating their lives.

If human nature strives for independence and control which is evidenced by research and old people are so unhappy about being told what to do, what about the countless daughter-in-laws (DILs) and sons in traditional societies who never get to be independent?

The moment the DIL comes into the family, everyone from her husband’s mother to father to other relatives take it upon themselves to show the DIL her place. They tell her what to cook, what to wear, when she can go out and even, if and when she can talk to her own parents. For the sons, unless they have studied/worked in another city, many of them never get the opportunity to explore their own tastes or desires. For the couple, they often do not get to explore setting up their own house or creating a home with their own rules. Often, it is about assimilating into somebody else’s home. 

On top of it, the in-laws and the husband are surprised when the DIL is upset about ‘trivial things’ like the colour of the curtains and wonder why she can’t ‘just adjust and give in’. That is because nobody likes being made to live their entire life according to another person’s whim and fancy. Yes, one could argue that one has to follow laws but everyone likes to have a semblance of control over their own lives to the largest extent possible as an adult.

Also, we (I sometimes do) often tend to go into parent mode with our parents as they grow older. Something we need to work on avoiding. 

Food for though for older people who wish to control their kids and their spouses lives. They may obey but they are not happy and this is why. If you are a DIL who feels irritated but can’t find anything wrong, this is why. Our societal norms are so ingrained in us that it is difficult to articulate what feels wrong. If you are a husband whose spouse complains about your mom/dad/sis/relative picking on her and you can’t get why she is so upset, this is why.

Give space and freedom to adults because that is how we are meant to be. How can one truly lead a fulfilled life if they do not get to live an independent life?

The Need For Approval From In-Laws


The Need For Approval From In-Laws

Why do women have such a strong need for approval from their in-laws?

As I listen to upset women about how their in-laws did not like this or that and read emails from women talking about issues with their in-laws, I really wonder why none of these women talk about their husbands or their parents in the same manner. 

“My dad was not happy because I don’t do puja every day”.

“My mom does not approve  and made remarks that I do not wake up at 5 AM daily.”

“My husband is not happy that I wore a dress today”.

No. I never hear those words from married women. It is almost always my mother in law (MIL)/ father in law (FIL)/ Sister in law (SIL) did not like that.

Why are women socially conditioned into pleasing their in-laws? Do they really care more about their in-laws than their parents or husbands? We are not children dependent on our parents approval. Isn’t love from the husband, friends and family enough? Why do we have to be in the good books of our MILs and FILs as well? There is this strong unwritten social contract that the DIL shouldn’t rock the boat and a lot of women play by that. Add to that, a lot of husbands tend to keep quiet and not support their wives because they do not wish to rock the boat either and because they are not suffering as much because filial piety but this is a story for another day.

Let’s look at this way – if your best friend was dating a guy who was constantly critical and never approved of anything she did, would the most natural reaction be to tell her to try harder or to break up? Why do we ditch logic when it comes to this situation? Admitted, a lot of the older generation (especially Asians) are traditional and do not believe in praising and prefer criticism by virtue of being elder but is it even logical to start relationships like that? With criticism and disapproval? The older folks also need to think about that.

From my observations, even if it is an arranged marriage, many in-laws do not approve of their daughter in laws (DILs) and are extremely critical of them, no matter what they do. A DIL may do whatever they tell her to do but they would still find fault with her. The very fact that she is the DIL (aka lowest in the social order of family) is reason enough. If it is so obvious that your in-laws are never going to approve of you, why even bother seeking their approval? Why not just live the way it suits you because they are always going to find something to nitpick on? If it a love marriage, many parents feel that the DIL should bend backwards because they were benevolent enough to let their son marry her. Many DILs feel guilty because of all the drama and hurt that led to the love marriage and are willing to do a lot to be accepted by their in-laws  and to ensure that there is no further cause for complaint. Often, so many DILs dislike their MIL but most play along in order to avoid confrontation or due to lack of support.

My opinion is that getting along with the in-laws is the icing on the cake. The cake is your marriage. If you look around you would realise that it is quite difficult to have a great marriage as it is, so why add additional people to the equation and complicate your life? It is great if you can get along fantastically with your in-laws but if you can’t, I think it is no big deal. Women would never let their friends/relatives/colleagues walk all over them, the way many DILs let their in-laws do. I do understand that many people do not like confrontations but sometimes, we have to fight it out, set boundaries and cut out toxic relationships if need be. On an average, we form a relationship with our in-laws well into our adulthood. It is not like we invested the last 30 years of our life nurturing the relationship and have difficulties letting go. It is enough if we can be civil and sit through a dinner without yelling or scratching each others eyes out.

“They are my husband’s parents, how can I stop talking to them?”

Yes, you can. You don’t have to engage in long conversations beyond civil greetings and polite meals. That does not mean that your husband should stop talking to his parents or your guilt trip him every time he talks to them. He can talk and visit all he wants. 

“I live in the same house as my in-laws.”

Please move out. In my opinion, moving out is one of the best things one can do for their marriage, especially if it is an arranged one where the woman doesn’t know her spouse well. I blogged about it here. Besides, we can’t get along with everyone in our class or in office. What do we do? Fight every time? No, we just be polite and avoid unnecessary interactions. Same in this case.

Involvement Interference from family and levels allowed is something a couple needs to discuss before marriage, especially if one or both partners is from a traditional or patriarchal culture. I am surprised at how DILS are caught by surprise when their husbands keep quiet or by how much his aunty has a say in your life. Most people avoid discussing these things but they need to be talked about. How much is the acceptable level of interference and how will your spouse protect you (from them)?

Is it okay if your mom dictates my clothes? Will you tell her not to bother me or keep quiet? Do they get to tell me to do puja daily? Can I refuse and answer back if I don’t agree with them? Can I refuse to cook if I am tired? Does my family have equal access to us like your parents? Do I get to argue the way  I do with my parents?

Of course, we have to be nice and kind like we treat all guests and people we meet for the first time. I am not asking you to start your relationship with your in-laws on the warpath. That doesn’t mean you let them walk all over you. It is way easier if you set your boundaries the first time something bothers you than wait for it to happen 20 times before you voice it out because people are conditioned to you obeying. Yes, voicing it out gives you the title of an arrogant/difficult DIL where the norm is obedient but it is a choice you have to make – get the good DIL badge of honor (which is never gonna come) or make choices that make you happy.

I really feel DILs should let go of the need for approval and acceptance from their in-laws. That is really one of the most liberating things we can do. There is no badge for the perfect DIL but not giving a shit about people who don’t approve does improve the quality of your life dramatically.

Finding a Ziploc Bag


Our search for ziploc bags in Croatia started after Uncle realized that he had forgotten to pack them when we left. We thought that it was not a big deal because one can ziploc bags anywhere these days. We were stumped to find that it was very difficult to find ziploc bags in Croatia. Even the largest supermarkets or stationary shops did not have them! We looked in Zagreb and Split with no luck. We didn’t check Ikea though.

Instead we found this!

Finding Ziplocks in Croatia

Seal your own bag with rubber bands ha ha. We remarked about this to a friend and she told us how her non-Croatian friends could not get why she couldn’t just use ziplocs.  This is why!

Next time you go to Croatia, bring your own ziploc bags! Really weird but true!

Serving Water in Restaurants


Last night, we were at a Japanese place and there were wet tissues on our table. Uncle used one as it was there. The waitress counted the wet tissues we used and added it to our bill! We were so shocked, I told them they were sneaky and cheating people because it is not indicated that it is chargeable. Why keep it on the table if it not for free?! She told us we were the first people to complain about this and that every restaurant does this ha. I hate the sneaky ways restaurants here charge for everything from water to tissues and add it to your bill.

Another pet peeve of mine is (east) Asian restaurants don’t serve tap water to patrons and always charge you for it which I find ridiculous. I haven’t been charged for drinking plain water in restaurants in India/USA/Europe unless I specifically wished to buy bottled water. If tap water of a country is drinkable and affordable, why not serve for free? As if it’s not enough that they charge for it, they serve it in tiny glasses which have to be constantly refilled and the servers keep making you wait for it. God help you, if you badly need water.

Once, we went to a restaurant as a part of an office meeting. When I asked for water, they said they do not serve tap water. I asked them if they could take a glass and just fill from the sink tap, they plain refused because ‘it is not part of their policy’ and if you want you can only buy San Pellergrino water. Nothing else. I thought that was extremely snobbish and bloody wasteful to have water shipped all the way from Europe. Same with another Thai food chain. They used to serve free water. Then they started charging for it. Then, they stopped serving tap water. If one wants, they need to buy bottled water or nothing else.

It is such a snobbish and so environment unfriendly and I am always surprised when people defend this bullshit practice, much less support it.

The only saving grace is that Indian and western (if they are not run by east Asians) serve free water.

Does complaining about being charged 50 cents for water make you a cheap skate? Does drinking/serving only bottled water from Europe make you posh? Do people just accept this because it is a norm in these societies? Do they keep quiet to avoid confrontation? Do most people give a shit about the environment? (No, they don’t give a shit).

My First Trip to Croatia – 1


Last Dec, I went to Croatia for the very first time to meet Uncle’s family and friends. We had a an awesome time though a bit tightly packed meeting so many people 😉

We stayed in the capital city – Zagreb for 2-3 days when we landed and 2 more days on our way back.

I walked a lot around residential areas, downtown, the Advent markets, the vegetable markets, Museum of broken relationships and St. Mark’s Square.

My observations about Zagreb

Note: My comparison points for cities are here  in south east Asia and USA.

  • It is an interesting place and reminded me of Seattle in terms of weather though the buildings are older.
  • The weather is continental and overall looks grey.
  • We took the tram and felt the tickets were quite expensive for the cost of living if one buys on a per trip basis.
  • Timberland is officially the most popular winter boots in Zagreb because I saw them everywhere.
  • People wear mostly dark colours.
  • People love to walk outdoors even if it cold.
  • There are sensor lights everywhere- in private apartments, malls, toilets of cafes which made my environment friendly heart very happy.
  • One of the cab services was quick, easy and effortless to book a cab and with fast service.
  • I loved the spinach burek from Mlinar. It is a puff pastry filled with spinach and cheese and is vegetarian.
Spinach Burek
Spinach Burek
  • Bread lovers rejoice. There is a bakery around every corner.
  • Everywhere I go, I spend a lot of time in the supermarkets checking out local stuff and if I can find stuff I use. If  you are like me, go to Super Konzum who seem to have everything. Yes, I spent 3 hours there.
  • The malls are not crowded. That was so surprising to me because I rarely come across a relatively empty mall here. Never even on a weekday.
  • It is quite a homogenous place. I kept my eyes peeled for foreigners or non whites and I saw very few – only 1 family with the woman wearing a head scarf and maybe 3 sets of Asian tourists and maybe 1-2 expats.
  • Nobody stated at me though. I get more stares here ha ha.
  • The women are overall quite pretty though Uncle claims that this is because a lot of them are from Split, Croatia.
  • Most of the women seem to be in the healthy weight range – not too skinny & tiny like here or swinging to another extreme.
  • One cool thing I observed was the dearth of fast food chains like Mac D, KFC. Here, every mall has all of them and there are there near every train stop and they are all always full  or have a lot of people irrespective of the time of day or night [Yes, I checked for crowds from times ranging from 7 AM to 3 AM]. I barely managed to see 1 KFC and 1 Mac D as we drove by and it clearly was not popular.

I experienced proper snow (tangible something I could walk in and make snow balls with) in Zagreb on the last day of our trip. Snow is beautiful when you look out of the window and you are inside warm and cozy. One would need waterproof pants and jacket for playing in the snow. Snow seems inconvenient for driving, roads etc.

Some photos

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It is one of the best Chevaps in town and it is downtown. Vegetarians get to eat cabbage pie 🙂 The restaurant was in a charming old building ‘s cellar.

We went to a cafe downtown called Millennium after this.

Millenium cafe bill

 

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The funicular to go up to St Mark’s Square

 

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The snow started like this

 

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and then it was like this!

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At the airport on my way back

Will you refuse to date someone who sends you this SMS?


I read Modern Romance by Aziz Ansari and liked the book overall. I love reading books on talking about modern social issues and those that are easy reads not boring textbook like.

However, I just could not wrap my head around the situation described in p42-44. He is talking about the importance of sending the proper SMS which would determine if someone would go out on a date with you. The example he uses is below –

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Modern Romance SMS

I really saw nothing wrong with this text. The guy was not a creeper, did not send an inappropriate message (like the sexual kind), introduced himself, clarified how he got her number, established a common friend connection (safer and kind of trustworthy) and seemed overall nice. 

Another point to note is that Rachel and Will met in person before this SMS at a wedding. In today’s world of flakiness and no replies, anybody making an effort to find out your number and not creeping you out is a great.

However, the young people including the author disagreed. Maybe, it was author’s license but I could not believe the entire audience of 3600 & Rachel was put off by 1 word – ‘texty’.

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Give the guy a break. Writing off someone because of 1 freaking word and it was not even creepy.

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Another thing they didn’t approve of was ‘toooooootally’ & ‘ Feliz cumpleanos’.

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I absolutely disagreed with this opinion and wondered why Rachel had refused to date him.  I asked Uncle what he thought and he could not believe that someone would be rejected for that. He could easily see himself writing such an SMS.

I felt that it was ridiculous that people are rejected on such a frivolous basis and it seems so shallow.

This is acceptable if you are 16 years old but not when you are 25. I wish the author had put in Rachel’s age because that would definitely give me a perspective on the behaviour. If someone is 30 years old and rejects guys based on this, it is pretty obvious why they will not be going out on dates or be in a healthy relationship anytime soon.

The guy is expected to make the first move and if they are rejected for stuff like this, I do not think we can complain when guys copy paste the same message for all girls on online dating sites because that clearly seems to be more efficient.

What do you think?