Freelance Announcer Aika Kanda What is your wish for your 43rd birthday? | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Freelance Announcer Aika Kanda What is your wish for your 43rd birthday?

Aika Kanda: Me, Pink, and Sometimes New York

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Well, May 29th will be here again this year! It’s the birthday of John F. Kennedy, Hibari Misora …… and Aika Kanda! Crackle crackle crackle★ About halfway through my life, I’ll be 43 years old!

© Kazuki Shimomura

This is how I imagined myself at 43 years old when I was younger: as an NHK announcer, I have long since earned the trust of viewers and the people on the ground! Thanks to a strong labor union, she is able to take a good amount of vacation time, enjoys traveling abroad, and is fond of saying, “I wonder if I’ll be lucky to be so fulfilled? She is a woman who always says, “I wonder if I won’t be punished for having such a good life.

In reality, however, she has been a freelancer for 11 years, having quit NHK long ago. She has been immersed in variety shows and is desperately trying to hang on for every minute at the place where her manager takes her, saying, “Here is your next job. Fear and uncertainty that I might disappear from the industry at any moment haunt me, and I manage to stand in front of the camera with several layers of confidence as thin as saran wrap. She is a woman who is fond of saying to her manager, “Did I do everything right today? to her manager.

When the former was my goal, I used to get angry at her at every opportunity. I was always angry at her when the former was my goal, but I knew that my career was the proof of my worth, the proof of my life, and that within the framework of NHK, I should be given a bigger role than anyone else and should shine brighter than anyone else. I was determined that this was my duty and that I was someone who could fulfill it. So when a slightly superior senior or a peer was given preferential treatment, I was filled with an unfathomable anger, “Why not me? I was filled with unfathomable anger.

Even I, who kept my engine running all day long, had one night when I was 28 years old when I was a little tired. Only once, and only once, did a female announcer 10 years my senior say to me, “Aren’t you tired of this job where you’re always fighting with everyone around you and you’re so pissed off ……?” I asked her. She replied, “Don’t worry, when you turn 30, you’ll be able to think of yourself as yourself and it will get easier.

I was looking forward to the day I would turn 30, and if it would get easier in two years, then I wouldn’t have to worry about it now, I could just do what I wanted. Another month later…… and six months later……. Not the slightest change of heart occurred. On the contrary, my impatience with my superior juniors gave rise to a new anger, and I realized that the words of my seniors did not apply to me.

For several years after I left NHK, this personality tormented me during times when I had few job offers. When I turned on the TV, I saw a lot of freelance announcers smiling happily. It was hard to watch, and I only watched BS preference programs where they did not appear. If this continues, I will no longer enjoy my job! I tried to find the cause of my anger.

I can’t wait to turn 50.

Before I get angry, I unconsciously compare myself with the other person. As a result, I say to myself, “Even I can do it! Why won’t they let me do it?” I get angry. But if I think about it, the answer is easy to find. Either I am not good enough or I am not attractive enough. When I calmly accepted this, I was so sad that I almost cried. But I still couldn’t stop myself from saying, “Then what good does this girl have? I was still angry.

The truth is, I know this in my heart. I know in my heart that she has talents and personality that I do not have. And that they are valued by the people around them. But I am frustrated, so I lie to myself, pretending that I don’t recognize or notice someone who is more attractive than I am. But deep down inside, I am envious of them, so my jealousy comes out in the twisted form of anger. I realized that the cause of my anger is all about me.

Then, I was able to look at myself objectively, and the anger disappeared and no longer arose. I am me, I can’t imitate anyone else, and no one else can imitate me. I felt so much better. The advice of my seniors at that time finally became my own after more than 10 years.

And now I can’t wait to be 50 years old. I should be old enough to be treated like an “auntie. But I can’t help but feel that people around me are very concerned about me. But I am me. I am a 43 year old woman without any mixture of the two, nothing more, nothing less. An aunt acts like an aunt and is treated like an aunt. That is the natural form for everyone to feel at ease. For this purpose, I think the number of 50 years old will play a significant role. It is my 43rd birthday, and I hope to be 50 years old as soon as possible.

Born in 1980 in Kanagawa Prefecture. After graduating from Gakushuin University with a degree in mathematics, she joined NHK as an announcer in 2003, and left in 2012 to become a freelance announcer. Since then, she has been active mainly in variety shows, and currently makes regular appearances as the main MC of the daytime TV program “Poka Poka” (Fuji Television Network).

From the June 9, 2023 issue of FRIDAY

  • Text and illustrations by Aika Kanda

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