6 June, Sekaikan Ozaki

文字数 3,962文字

Returns


Now is the time for crowdfunding. These days, everyone’s doing it. You set up a crowdfunding site to protect what’s important to you and get people to support it. Decluttering is outdated. A new era, one where everyone shares, is just around the corner. With crowdfunding, you can see everything that’s happening. When you get scared, when you’re worried, crowdfunding is there at your side. The light emitted by the LCD screen on my PC makes my grinning face glow in the dark. The amount raised to date. The targeted amount. The remaining percentage. These figures promptly illuminate my face. You know your mind is becoming stronger simply by looking at people’s thoughts that have been quantified. Since my first attempt at it, I have used crowdfunding too many times to count.
  (The amount of capital) suddenly increases immediately after starting, then things are unchanged for a while. And finally, there are only three more days to go. This is where it starts to get serious. I feel truly alive while I’m waiting for funding. The sense of unity and explosiveness. Supporters give me backing, I face invisible foes straight on and take them out, then there’s the achievement. That’s what crowdfunding is all about. That’s the introduction, development, twist, and conclusion—a story we call crowdfunding—that I’m living out. It isn’t as if I want money, and it isn’t as if I don’t want to part with my money. Crowdfunding is a connection between people, an emotional connection.
  I’m lonely, and there’s no place where I feel that I belong. Crowdfunding is what has saved me, and it’s also crowdfunding that distresses me. Crowdfunding has strengthened my mind completely, yet I no longer need crowdfunding. Now I have a furious need to start a crowdfunding project. One day, a neighbor named Nishioka fell in his back yard and broke his hip. I heard about it and my crowdfunding mind began to ache.
  (Old people are living libraries. Help me help Mr. Nishioka, a living human treasure of our town.)
  The crowdfunding that I had set up achieved the target amount as anticipated, and I took the money and went to see him. He looked glum. I wasn’t happy about his reaction, after having gone to the trouble of getting support for the old man. I was able to control myself to that point, but then Mr. Nishioka said, anger seeping into his voice, that he didn’t want money that came from who knew where. Stunned, it was all I could do to stare at the froth gathered at the corners of his mouth.
  I don’t need your meddling. You do whatever you need to take care of your own business. It’s my policy to fend for myself.
  He wouldn’t stop talking. He flatly refused everything: the photos and videos I’d planned as return gifts to supporters, the naps, the camping trips, the pilgrimages to sacred places with Mr. Nishioka. I’m sorry I set these up without consulting him, but I did it for him.
  I was at a loss. I also felt fury burning in my heart. Once I got home, I started my PC. I’m unable to cool the heat in my chest. The face glowing in the dark is twisted in anger. I needed revenge. I set up a new crowdfunding site.


Translated by Eriko Sugita/Arranged by TranNet KK

Sekaikan Ozaki
Born in Tokyo, 1984. Vocalist and guitarist of the rock band Creephyp. The band made their major debut with the album

Shinu

made

isshō

aisareteiru

to

omottetayo

(I thought I would be loved until the end of my life) in 2012. Drew critical acclaim for his semi-autobiography

Yūsuke

, originally published in 2016 and currently published as

Yūsuke,

Jii

(Yūsuke, letter of pleasure) together with a newly-written story. His recent works include the diary-essay

Kujū

100%

nōshuku

kangen

(Bitter experiences 100% concentrate) and the collection of discussions

Mi

no

aru

hanashi

to,

ha

ni

tsumaru

watashi

(Talks with body and me stuck in the teeth), among others.

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