Kawaii literally translates as cute. But not cute in the way a girl would describe a guy she finds attractive, but cute in the way you would describe a puppy. In the US, I am your typically, slovenly looking game geek. If I am memorable at all, it comes after interacting with me and laughing with me. As for my physicality, maybe portly would come to mind, but that’s about it. In Japan though, it’s a different perspective all together. I am kawaii. I don’t really know why. I would prefer the image of immortal sex God, but it wasn’t the cards I was dealt. I suppose it’s because I may have an intimidating look, but my demeanor is radically different. Maybe it’s because I just prefer laughing when I can. I have no idea, but here I am cute. I hear the girls at school everyday “先生メッチャ可愛いね” sometimes even the boys. When I am at the local train station and fishing around my bag, I can hear former students commuting to their high schools saying the same thing. I am the equivalent of a Panda bear being loosed to wander around the city. I am rather sick of it, but also resigned to it. I won’t lie, I have grown used to exploiting it while teaching. I can amp it up to levels equivalent to Barney the dinosaur to early 90’s kiddos and keep them at rapt attention while my alleged cuteness sends some of girls into convulsive states of kawaii overload. When I was dating I used this effect as much as I could, after all… Most girls can’t resist an invitation for coffee when offered by a panda.