Baby steps, I suppose.
cat lover who's allergic to them. They do have hypo-allergenic cats now, though...
Akihito Arai (Han Megumi) universally known as "Akki". Akki is interesting in that this one of the few times we've heard Han Megumi in a boy role apart from Gon, and she's excellent. Akki is of course the brother of Tamako, the aspiring mangaka who's crushing on Handa-san, and he's a well-mannered boy whose gaming skills are the stuff of legend. The business with the old-school dial phone is the funniest scene in the episode, and shows off Akki's deadpan directness ("It's black!" "Yes, because it's a black phone."). Would a guy in his 20s really have no idea how to dial a phone? Who knows, but the comedy definitely works. And 10¥ for a 5-minute call to Tokyo is one hell of a bargain.
Miwa's father - the scary liquor-store owner and seaweed collector - "hires" (though browbeats would be more accurate) Handa into painting a name (Yuigadokuson - "Only I am Holy") onto the side of his boat. Handa is initially intimidated at the prospect of the unblemished whiteness of the hull and terrified of making a mistake, but the chibis splatter it with tiny handprints and goad him into action, overcoming his fear out of necessity and discovering a newfound sense of purpose in the process. With a major competition coming up, rounding into creative form is a crucial task for Handa-san, especially as success at such events is crucial for anyone hoping to make a living as a calligrapher.