Let me put on my serious face first. This will probably function as my post on why I’m a fan and what I get out of it.
For me, one of the cool things about the handshake system is the fact that you can actually make a real impression on them. I very much remember my handshakes with Sakipi, Naru, and Yukitsun because it felt as if they were excited and thrilled to see me, and I think that’s really cool; that as a fan I’m able to give back to them, to let them know that their work is not vain, that there are people that enjoy what they do even if they are as far away as America. And that is my favorite part. It’s not so much that I get a handshake so that I’m the main beneficiary, but that we can mutually get a great experience out of it. THAT is what I love about being a fan of the idol system.
As Ririka said in her speech when she undered for Cameron, the fan-idol relationship is one of reciprocating love. When you’re a fan, the best thing to get is having your idol succeed, and when your idol succeeds, they’re able to give back to you. Now, Ririka quoted all these philosophers and I don’t quite remember which ones and how, but that was the core idea of her idol theory and to me it made perfect sense. With that in mind, a handshake event is not just for the fan, but also for the idol.
It extends beyond that as a fan too. When you have a good conversation, it’s fun to share that with other fans and it feels like we all grow together.
When I say I’m not worthy for Sayaka, I frame it in that idol-fan relationship. Sayaka really is a great idol. For my handshake, she seemed really locked in and interested in me as a fan, and yet there were a lot of fans of all flavors behind me and in front of me. Young, old, male, female, handicapped; it seemed that when everyone walked out, they had the biggest smiles on their faces.
And Sayaka did too.
To think that she treats all the fans as well as me is really something.
With that in mind, as a fan, I don’t feel like an offer as much to her as she offers to me. For Jo, I felt like I made her day just because we have the same name. For Sayaka? I don’t think I can ever do that. She’ll make you feel great as a fan, but it just seems like you can’t give that back.
And that’s okay, but it’s not what I prefer to get out of a handshake event. (This is also why I’m not particularly fond of the shamekai event; the photo is mostly for the fan, doesn’t really do much for the idol unless you somehow come up with a pose that they find genuinely amusing, made even more difficult with the table.)
I still like Sayaka. Don’t get me wrong, she’s one of the preeminent members of NMB and manages to entertain whether on variety or performing on stage. But as a handshake, I just don’t feel like I will make an impact on her the way that she does on me, and so I’d much rather visit the other girls.
With that said, that’s just how I treat handshakes. Everyone’s different. Unless you share the same non-standard, atypical views as me, then of course you can visit her and be stunned at how great she is. That’s fun too, and I’m happy (if not a tad jealous) that other fans are able to enjoy the handshake experience in that way.
Anyway, this felt nice to write. I’ve never really thought about this so it was nice to think about what it personally means to be a fan and why I enjoyed the handshake event as much as I did.