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Poke around the murkier corners of anime stores, and you can find no shortage of lascivious merchandise such as huggable pillow cases, bed sheets, and waterproof “bath posters” plastered with images of the medium’s more popular characters. But what about the otaku who’s looking for a more chaste way to connect with his or her 2-D crush?

If your PG-rated date idea consists of playing miniature golf or going to the homecoming dance, you’re still out of luck. However, thanks to one creative fan you and your favorite anime character can now share a soda with two straws like a pair of 1950s lovebirds.

Twitter user Mika Mikami is the definitely inventive, possibly lonely individual who came up with the idea. First, you’ll need a picture of the character drinking from a straw while looking straight ahead. Print the illustration out and attach it to some sort of stiff backing, like the paper fan Mika Mikami uses in these photos.

Next, you’ll need to make a hole where the character’s straw dips into the glass. Put your own straw through this hole, place a cup containing your beverage on the far side of the illustration, and you’re all set.

“It’s…it’s not like I’m drinking this carbonated high-fructose beverage because I like you or anything!”

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Japanese Twitter users had the following to say.

“What a novel idea.”
“This is seriously awesome.”
“You’re a genius.”
“You could use this with pictures of idol singers, too.”

We figure it’s only a matter of time until someone combines this with the anime eyeglass stands we saw a while back for a double dose of cuteness.

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Of course, there’s one problem with this combo, which is that if you take your glasses off, it’s going to make it that much harder to gaze into the eyes of your beloved character as you share your drink. To get the maximum effect, you’ll need to buy a second pair of glasses exclusively for the anime holder, so you can keep your own for yourself.

Obviously anime girls don’t need prescription lenses, but a pair of nice frames will still set you back 50 bucks or so. Spending that kind of money on fashion accessories for a fictional character is pretty unusual, but if you’re at the point where you’re sipping soda with one, you’ve passed the threshold for the “obsessive” label a long time ago.

Source: Jin
Top image: Twitter
Insert images: Twitter (1, 2)