The fan cave: A nerd oasis

A hand-signed, framed anime poster hangs on the wall front and center, greeting all guests that pass through the front door. Dozens of CDs, DVDs and video games are stacked and pouring out of the cubbyholes next to the TV, loose discs haphazardly mixed together in piles. The Xbox 360 vies to find space among the action figures, while a collection of stuffed Pokémon manage to find a perch atop the Limited Edition Batman PlayStation 4. “Game of Thrones” house sigil banners sway slightly as you pass by into the kitchen where a finished “Tangled” puzzle litters the countertop along with all the dirty dishes. The fridge is covered with fan-art of anime and comic book characters with magnets of Hogwarts houses securing them in place. Everywhere you turn there is a reference to one fictional character or another, breathing life into every corner.

This is just a small glimpse into the chaotic, geeky wonder that is my apartment. Situated just off Court Street, my humble domicile is easily my favorite place in all of Athens. It is certifiably a nerd’s paradise with fandom memorabilia decorating most every available surface. One peek through the front door and you can tell that its occupants often have fever dreams about going to Comic Con.

I’m lucky to share my apartment with my girlfriend and two close friends. All of our passions and interests bleed together to create a fun, hodgepodge environment we all call home. I personally introduced a few of them to the wonder of anime and video games—one of my greatest personal achievements to date. It’s often that we give recommendations to one another, sharing the details of our latest entertainment obsessions. Watching anime on Crunchyroll and playing “Mortal Kombat X” are just a few of the many roommate-bonding activities that always brighten up my day.

A photo of myself at my desk in my bedroom.

My bedroom is an extension of the spirit and style of the rest of the apartment. The desk hutch shelves are lined with comics, manga, and Japanese horror novels. They are cramped in tight to make room for my anime figures, many of which I had to leave at home for the sheer number in my collection. Having always feared asylum white walls, posters give the space some color—the bright pops of color from the “Suicide Squad” complementing the muted tones of my Daenerys Targaryen, her dragon perched proudly on her shoulder.

Flopping down onto my bed and snuggling with my pink, stuffed squid named Squid-O, is the most rewarding experience after a long day at school. At home I can breath a sigh of relief, the soothing white noise of my floor fan often egging me into a much-needed nap.

Drinking endless cups of tea and swapping daily stories with my roommates brings me immense joy. Unlike the dorms where privacy was little and rules loomed over me, my apartment is full of freedom and creativity. Paying my rent, cooking meals, and even sweeping the carpet make me feel like a proper, responsible adult.

Well, as much of an adult that someone in love with toys can be.