Gratitude - An Ode to the Wonderful Durtles

The Law of Equivalent Exchange

“Humankind cannot gain anything without first giving something in return.”

This durtle just wants to be able to draw circles in the ground and do cool alchemy stuff. Since that is still not possible in real life, this durtle came up with a different type of magic. A magic that can convert your sadness and boredom into joy and rip-roaring laughter. This durtle’s name is @IgorTheGreat san :grin:

I met Igor san mostly on the meme threads. They have a knack for making killer memes that can turn grumpy cats to happy cats :slight_smile: A tarantula loving durtle, grooving to Beyonce’s “Crazy in Love”, they are a sucker for the big beams shooting out of “normal people”. And I am a sucker for Igor san’s memes :stuck_out_tongue:

Thanks for all the wonderful memes and laughs Igor san :raised_hands: Your humor is a truly potent alchemy :wink: I bestow upon you the title of Alchemist Durtle


Err Mah Burrdah

Do cats make Clicky-Clicky polls?
Do cats get mad at you?
Do cats die out of curiosity?
Do cats watch anime?

So many questions and few answers. What should you do when you meet a being and you are not sure whether they are a hooman or a meow… Today’s durtle is one of those beings and the durtle’s name is @saibaneko san :grin:

I met Saiba sama when they gate crashed my new thread BiriBiri beats and spammed filled it with cat pics. They had me at “Kyoka Kitty” pic :stuck_out_tongue: I soon jumped into the deep end of the pool that is POLL family and get to know Saiba sama better. There are an embodiment of cat energy and there is never a dull moment when they are around. They poke you, scratch you, nuzzle you until you shower them with the love and attention we know they deserve :smile:

To call Saiba sama a bundle of energy is an understatement. They are a multilingual, International, Suave Coder cat we are blessed to have on the forum with us. My admiration for them is similar to that of Nakiri Erina’s for Saiba Jouichirou from Shokugeki no Soma - hence the moniker “Saiba sama”. They complete the Top 3 cats from POLL family :slight_smile:

After interacting with them on a daily basis and looking at Iris (the cat in their profile pic) every time I look at a black and white cat, my mind says “Iris is here” :stuck_out_tongue: Saiba sama is a force of nature to be reckoned with and you know your life will change forever because once you experience “Awesomeness” it is near impossible to go back to “Ordinary” :metal:

Thanks for making our lives interesting Saiba sama :slight_smile: あなたはカッコイ猫です I bestow upon you the title of Iris Durtle

Note: If you didn’t understand the title of the post, it is cat speak for “Oh My Buddha” :wink:


Omg @KyokaJiro-san I actually cried reading this.
After the JLPT I took 10 days away from WK to just focus on university finals papers/ new computer set up/ mental health and I come back to this lovely lovely post
I feel so so grateful for you and everyone in the Level 21 before 2021 forum T-T
Actually crying

Thank you for just being you!!! Just an overall warm and comforting person in this generally spiky internet world.
I don’t even know how to react right now



I am so touched and honored! Thank you!!


:sob::sob::sob: @KyokaJiro -san… Thank you… You are so sweet, this really brought a tear to my eye. I honestly don’t expect to be remembered for my minor presence on these forums, but here you’ve kept my own personal journey in your heart and wrote about it in such a cute and poetic way.

You always go above and beyond to remember everyone’s names, experiences, and likes, and go out of your way to make each person feel loved and listened to. I’ve seen it over in our beloved 21 by 2021 and Skytree threads, and again we see it with this great and precious thread here. You’re so good at this that I’ve wondered if you keep a spreadsheet of notes on everyone you’ve met on the forums! You are just such a lovely person to have around. From the bottom of my heart, thank you so much! :pray::two_hearts:

P.S. Edit: After reading some of the other responses here, I wanted to add a little story. The fact that you used a Pokemon reference for me really made me smile. It may be that you remembered me saying once that I liked it, but what I haven’t told you is that Pokemon was actually my introduction to the language so many years ago. As a young teen, I got my hands on some of the original Pokemon music CDs, which came with lyrics books that I couldn’t read at the time. I became filled with passion to understand, and taught myself kana using nothing but those lyrics books and a Japanese-English dictionary. The first word I learned to write was ピカチュウ, and I felt so proud of myself when I figured out how to take that and turn it into ピチュウ. I think I was about 13 or 14 years old.

In that sense, Pokemon has a special place in my heart not only for its entertainment value, but in its connection to the beginnings of my Japanese journey. It’s quite special that you picked such a title for me even without knowing this. I’ll treasure my Vivillon Durtle. :grin:


Tofugu’s Seaside

Today’s durtle is one of the Rockstars of our community. They love to eat Cod and can make a mouth-watering Okonomiyaki waffle. Their 創造 (creations) have had a positive impact on most of the WK users whether through wonderful articles on the Tofugu blog, heartfelt and handwritten letters for users, writing awesome code running in the background to make your life easier, making podcast episodes to improve your Japanese skills, sending replies to curious durtles or packing store orders with love. They do all of this and more and yet have more patience and love to spread in the community. It is none other than @TofuguKanae san :slight_smile:

I had a few interactions with Kanae san over the last few months and much more in the recent past. They are as kind and awesome as they appear to be. They may no longer be the “Official Happiness Officer” at WK but they still are the “Resident Happiness Officer” for all of us because when it comes to making people happy there are few people in this world who can measure up to Kanae san :grin:

Thanks for showering us with love in the same way you grow plants or make crafts :smile: We love your designs, coding, writing etc. and we love you too :smiley: Our 食欲 (appepite) for all things Kanae will never end :slight_smile: I bestow upon you the title of Megumi Durtle

Note: I hope you have sharpened your Ruby skills Kanae san. I am still waiting for your game where one can talk to the Crabigator and listen to his lessons :stuck_out_tongue:


I am happy you are back Panda san :slight_smile:

We missed you around the forum.

1 Like

How can we ever forget you Jamuko san :slight_smile:

Thanks for your kind words :grin:

Hahaha. Thanks :smiley: No I don’t have a spreadsheet :stuck_out_tongue:

I love people and their stories. They are so much more than what they appear to be. So, I take my time to learn about them and remember :slight_smile: (Which I hopefully do most of the time)

There is a song called “Wake Up” by Hilary Duff.

There’s people talking
They talk about me
They know my name, they think they know everything
But they don’t know anything about me

For some reason that was a kind of epiphany moment for me. Ever since I have paid extra attention to people when they talk to understand them better :slight_smile:

That’s awesome :grin: It is similar to a Marvel Super Hero Origin story :smile: I love it :slight_smile:

You hit the correct point! There are two parts of every story. This is not just about me saying thank you. This is about my end of the interactions and also the interests of the person I am thanking. There may be a few changes here and there but this is how the process works at the moment.

  1. Decide on a person to thank. Initially I started out chronologically, but now I vary between multiple things. (Level 21 thread, Gif thread, Poll family etc.)
  2. Once the person is decided in my mind, I want to focus on a quality or two to have a general sense of how I want to thank.
  3. I read a lot of posts on the forum by that person, understand their likes, the things close to their heart etc.
  4. By this time, I have at least 3-4 points that the person loves. I put down the qualities I want to emphasize based on our interactions. Try to merge what the other person likes and what I like about them into a coherent theme/narrative.
  5. Come up with a cool durtle name.

That is approximately the process I go through for each person.

The most important thing I learned over and over is, it has to a balance of what the other person likes and what I want to say. If it lacks any one of those, it might come across as perfunctory.

It is not a coincidence that I picked out Pokemon. I went through your past posts and the found the Pokemon X and Y post from 2013 where you were talking about trading Vivillon. I felt your words were some of the happiest in that thread, so I looked up Vivillon and felt it suited your personality and built the narrative around it :slight_smile: I leave a lot of Easter Eggs in the names, references, sentences etc. If they look close enough they will find a lot of them in each person’s post :wink: Did you find the ones hidden in yours? I will tell you one :stuck_out_tongue: Spewpa changes into Vivillon after it crosses Level 11, the place where you stopped first time. This year you crossed Level 11, hence the bloomed from Spewpa into Vivillon reference :grin:

If I can’t talk about what feels closest to your heart, I might be saying irrelevant stuff. I am not sure If I succeed or not, but I try my best to make it closest to the person’s heart :slight_smile:


How should we like it were stars to burn

With a passion for us we could not return?

If equal affection cannot be,

Let the more loving one be me.

- W.H. Auden

When I think of this durtle, I can’t think of anything but this masterpiece from W.H.Auden. It conveys the essence of every action of this selfless Love Durtle. Some of their beliefs include:

  • People and situations are too complex to fit inside a black and white framework.
  • Teamwork makes the dream work.
  • Love is both a positive and destructive force.

This durtle is none other than @sansarret san :blush:

Generally, Sansarret san supports others in the background :slight_smile: And when they speak out loud it is going to be epic, like that heart tingling love letter to Wanikani titled “Hello WaniKani, I love you! Open letter to WK team” or the “Naruto Appreciation Thread”. You can feel every word bursting with love :grin: And when they make you cry, it is out of pure unbridled joy :wink:

They are also a wonderful durtle with impeccable taste in Manga/Anime. When someone loves Naruto, FMA Brotherhood, HxH, Haikyuu, Run with the wind, My Hero Academia etc., you know for a fact that you have met a bonafide awesome durtle and you are going to hit it off :grin: You are as cool as Shoto Todoroki’s right half and as passionate as his left half :sunglasses:

Thanks for all your support in the community Sansarret san. We are truly lucky to have someone as understanding and loving as you in the community :slight_smile: I bestow upon you the title of Ed Durtle

Note 1: This Ed reference is to the Edward Elric from Full Metal Alchemist.
Note 2: Yes, Kakeru looks like Kageyama :stuck_out_tongue: and also Haiji looks like Ushiwaka :wink:


In this spirit, I’d like to share a few words of gratitude to some lovely folks! :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:

@Omun :robot: I remember still being relatively new in the forums and watching all the commotion on that thread people made specifically to express how much they missed you. Now I have an idea of how they were feeling! I hope you and your wife are well. Thank you for kindly encouraging this lurker to come out of her shell more often, it meant a lot. :see_no_evil:

@trunklayer You often talk about how you’re “just a small and clumsy cat”, and I relate to that feeling a lot. But, let us remember that

In an “all-or-nothing” world, we tend to forget the power of something. The mightiest tree sprouts from a vulnerable seed.
— Ryder Carroll

Thank you for being your meowgnificent (and meowschievous :wink:) cat self! :cat2:

@ekg You are like a force of nature, always interacting with people and creating new threads, POLLs, durtles :durtle_noice: and interesting conversations! :smiley: Thanks for bringing so much fun! :fireworks: :tada: :sparkles:

@inspectatoro I love seeing you happily chug along in your Japanese journey! :steam_locomotive: Thanks for being so enthusiastic and inspiring! :nerd_face:

@KyokaJiro You created this beautiful gratitude thread! :heart: You also went out of your way to surprise a bunch of lucky people, and that was so sweet :heart_eyes: (though, I must admit, when I saw that poll I was like :eyes: and suspected you might be up to something :rofl:)! Thank you for being so kind and thoughtful! :blush:



Why do durtles ride trains?

As I was about to step on the crabigator train that just stopped at the durtle station, I heard a loud voice “I’m not gonna run away and I never go back on my word, that is my durdō! My durtle way!” A durtle raiding golden splendor welcomed me aboard the durtle ride “Welcome aboard Choo Choo Express. You are in for the ride of your life” . It is none other than our resident train lover @inspectatoro san :slight_smile:

One of the most prominent presences on the forum during my early days was Tatoro san :grin: Whether it is the lovely “UP” welcome or the catchy “Aone Bow” welcome, they spread warmth far and wide among the durtles like the sound of a train horn spreads in the air. They are also a humble and wise durtle trying to help others avoid major mistakes in their lives.

There is a lot I can say about Tatoro san and If I can say only one thing, it would be their love for “All Things Trains” :grin: They are an encyclopedia of trains and reminds me of Sheldon Cooper from show “The Big Bang Theory”. Their number two would be food. They have mastered the special language of food to unlock the secrets of cross-cultural bonding through their love for food. Their number three would be all the languages they learnt: English, Filipino, Spanish, Korean, German, Portuguese, Indonesian (Bahasa), Hawaiian, and High Valyrian. Who knows? They might even prepare High Durtlian language :wink:

Tatoro san loves Rice, Haikyuu and Naruto truly, madly, deeply. We have multiple versions of Tatoro san based on goals: aspirational, nostalgic, doable and lazy. No matter which version they are, somethings do not change “Ride the trains, enjoy the food and learn as much as possible”

Coincidentally, today is also the day they reached the promised heaven that is “Level 42” :grin: Thanks for the love, sincerity and gratitude you showered on the durtles. We hope you celebrate countless milestones on your beautiful journey. I bestow upon you the title of ChooChoo Durtle

Note: The answer to the rhetorical title question is because “They are FUN”


Thanks for sharing your gratitude Midori san :slight_smile: I hope you don’t mind me using that name for you. I use it because your name has “Green”, your avatar is “green” colored and you are as cool and strong as “Midori Sakurazawa” - One of the my favorite characters from “Chihayafuru” (one of my top 10 manga) :grin:

Thanks for your kind words Midori san :smiley: I am the lucky one to have met wonderful people as you in this otherwise forgettable year :slight_smile: This community is one of the rare bright spots for me this year :bowing_man: :bowing_woman:


Thank you for your kind words! I’ve really enjoyed our conversations in the POLLs throughout this year and always look forward to seeing your comments in the thread. See you in the POLLs but until then: Happy Holidays and take care of yourself and the family! ^>^ :heart: :green_heart: :heart:


This is so wonderful!
I love how much work you are putting into these, @KyokaJiro. I don’t think we have ever really communicated here, but you are such a great force in the community.
I love that the community is so large and active that there are totally great people here that I have never even ran into before.
Keeping doing kindness!


I hope everyone is having a lovely day!

I’m just making some gingerbread ^-^



Well, its hard to make Edward Elric silent, but your powerful writing can do it!


Thank you for this incredible Christmas gift!

Honestly I’m failing to find adequate words to explain my emotional response to your post.

Happy Holidays and all the best to you!


Is this the “The Good Place”?

The forum is a collection of countless durtles. To manage the forum and make sure that things are running smoothly while also accommodating the weird and wonderful quirks of durtles is not a child’s play.

Thank you @Mods for all your hard work in making this place the real “The Good Place”. Thanks to all your efforts, maintenance and development we are able to have a Jolly good time on the forum :slight_smile:

For tirelessly spreading the gospel of Crabigator to all corners of the world, I bestow upon you the title of Apostle Durtle

Note 1: A special shout-out to @TofuguKanae and @RachelG for personally helping this durtle :raised_hands:
Note 2: Sorry for the ping. I wanted the mods to see this message and understand we appreciate your work :slight_smile:
Note 3: Yes, This is “The Good Place”!!


If we only focus on making the best moves, we will never get the better of our opponent. When necessary, we must be willing to take big risks, and be prepared to lose everything. Unless we change how we fight, we cannot win.

-Erwin Smith (Shingeki no Kyojin/Attack on Titan)

If you take the sweetness of a lush strawberry and mix it with the character of a strong commander, what do you get? You get @CDR-Strawberry :slight_smile: or Danchou for cadets like me :stuck_out_tongue:

As the name suggests Danchou is a gentle durtle that embodies the kindness and love of the best of durtles and at the same time they are true to their convictions even if they are being battered by the worst of the storms. They are the kind of durtle that wants to shelter and save a stray cat. They are the kind to be filled with joy to see a family of foxes play around.

It is not just kindness and strength, Danchou is a rockstar when it comes to cosplay or photography. They can make custom anime masks or 3D plastic fish or durtles and you can see the tens of hours of love and efforts that went to making the items.

Danchou is also one of those rare durtles that step towards their dreams even though it is terrifying. They engage their fellow Japanese workers using their WK Japanese and go through extra efforts to incorporate Japanese into their daily life. They started wonderful threads like Japanese sentence of the day, small talk in Japanese etc. As they are fond to say "We rise and fall and break and we make our mistakes…"

Thanks for being a wonderful role model Danchou. We will gladly dedicate our hearts to the cause :grin: I bestow upon you the title of Danchou Durtle


Oh my goodness, that was quite a while ago!! I actually didn’t even remember that I had posted here about it! But I do remember collecting Vivillon and have a box of them still stored in my game. It’s great because the different patterns come from all over the world, just like people here :grin:

:open_mouth: You just blew my mind!! That’s so cute, hahaha. I love it!

I see you’re working hard on more lovely posts, so I won’t take up too much space here. But thank you :two_hearts: