Best Anime Club: Beefiest way to catch ’em all

Beefbowl

Watching School Rumble, The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya, and Invincible Poster Girl with a like-minded crowd really gets that otaku blood racing. Founded by ex-members of the Laney Anime Club, Beefbowl — which meets to screen handfuls of episodes on occasional weekend afternoons at the Albany Library — was one of four local clubs that participated thirteen years ago in the first-ever FanimeCon, now one of the nation’s biggest Japanimation gigs, held every Memorial Day Weekend at the San Jose Convention Center. While anime clubs are becoming de rigueur at more and more libraries — including Oakland’s Rockridge and Martin Luther King Jr. branches and Kensington Library — Beefbowl is individualistic, vehemently antibootleg, and so well grounded its founders take in their stride the fact that rivals love to call this confab “Beefbowel.” Screenings usually end with a meal nearby, hence the name: beef bowl, aka gyudon, is a Japanese fast food featuring thinly sliced meat and onions over rice — perfect for those post-Rurouni Kenshin jitters.

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