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Remembering Eri, Junjun and Linlin December 15, 2010

Posted by Nights4Saturn in Hello! Project, Junjun, Morning Musume.
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This post should go live at the very start of Eri, Junjun, and Linlin’s graduation concert, which means by the time you read this Morning Musume is most likely now a five member group.

I still can’t believe that all of them are graduating. At once even. It still seems unreal. Like such things can’t really happen.

It almost seems silly that I can use “unreal” to describe this feeling, as that was the exact same term I used to describe the events where I was fortunate enough to actually meet these girls in the Summer of 2009 at Anime Expo.

So, I’d like to use this post to share with you guys a personal experience I had with each of these members during that Summer, something special that I can always remember them by.

Eri:

This memory comes from the first autograph session right after their Q&A panel. During this session I had decided to have my Platinum 9 Disco poster that I had just picked up signed (because, you know, it’s awesome). Problem with that, is that this thing is big. Like really big. So, to say that it was slightly cumbersome to move around between all of the girls is a bit of an understatement.

So, when I got to Eri in the line up she tried to position the poster so that she could sign, but in the process she managed to bend it slightly in the middle. Imagine taking a piece of paper and pushing it in on both sides slightly so that it pops up in the middle, no big deal right?

Well, not for Eri.

The way she reacted was as if she had just tore the darn thing in half. Her eyes went all big in shock, and she kept trying to apologize in English. All I could do was try and tell her that it was okay.

At the time it kind of freaked me out. Not her bending the poster, but her reaction. I was already nervous as all heck just being so near these girls, and then Eri panics over my poster? Yikes! In retrospect, I probably had a look of utter terror on my face because of this, which couldn’t have helped the situation…

Looking back on it now, I think that experience really shows how much Eri cares for her fans. She took something that was legitimately a non-issue, and freaked out about it because it wasn’t perfect. Her dedication really is pretty amazing.

Junjun:

During that same autograph session, when Junjun had finished with her autograph she handed the poster over to Linlin (the girls were seating in order of seniority, Ai, Gaki, Eri, etc) but left her pen on the poster.

The great part of this memory wasn’t that she simply forgot the pen, but everyone’s reactions. I actually saw the pen laying on the poster the entire time, so I was able to watch everything that happened afterwards.

Now, these two things happened pretty much simultaneously. As Linlin had the poster in front of her she went to sign it with own her pen but just stopped when she saw the other pen laying on the poster. Didn’t say anything, didn’t look around. Just stopped and starred at it. As for Junjun, when she went to sign the next person’s item she started to look around for her pen. She looked around her own pile of pens for what was probably two or so seconds before she glanced over at Linlin and my poster. Seeing her pen, and realizing her mistake, she broke out into a huge grin.

After a moment of starring at her pen Junjun moved in to retrieve it. Instead of asking Linlin for it (who was still looking at it by the way), she just swooped in and grabbed it from right under her nose uttering a small “hya!” This snapped Linlin’s attention, who then responded with a laugh, glanced over at Junjun, and then resumed with her signing of my poster. Junjun purposely didn’t make eye contact with Linlin afterward and immediately started signing the next person’s poster, still beaming and giggling slightly, obviously embarrassed from the situation.

I love this memory so much just because how cute and candid it was. I mean, I really couldn’t have even imagined something like this happening, it’s just that silly, which is exactly why it’s so special.

Linlin:

There were three autograph sessions at Anime Expo: two using the tickets given away at the Q&A session, and a third in the exhibiation hall using the tickets from buying merchandise.

This third autograph session was far, far more rushed than the other two. The other two sessions seemed to allow everyone to take as much time as they wanted, well, within reason I imagine. At the third we were expressly told not to try and converse with the girls or to try for a handshake either.

Now, during all of Morning Musume’s events at Anime Expo I was really quite impressed with Linlin’s English. She even managed to answer all her questions in English during the Q&A session, understandably too, no less. So I wanted to say something to her to congratulate her on this.

I figured something quick like that while she was signing wouldn’t be of any harm, so when I came up to Linlin during that session I told her I thought her English was quite good.

She stopped, looked up, made eye contact, and enthusiastically said, “Oh, thank you!” in English.

I was, and still am impressed, that during the rushed atmosphere of that session she would still take the time to acknowledge me like that. When everyone was being pushed to get people through there as fast as possible, she took the time to properly thank me. I know it’s such a simple thing, but it still meant a lot to me.



I really don’t want to see them go, but this is Morning Musume, and that means the line-up must change. No matter how hard it might be, the line-up still changes.

I just want to wish them the best of luck, no matter what their future endeavors might entail, may they succeed.

So, here’s to you, Eri, Junjun, and Linlin!

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