#TurnItUpTuesday: The Black Skirts

I decided to throw it back a little bit and bring back some cringey, embarrassing, and random things that I used to do back in the very early days of my blog. I used to do these posts designated for each day of the week, but then I stopped because it got too demanding and I just didn’t have the time for it as much anymore. However, today is an exception because I wanted to bring attention to a band and an album that I fortunately stumbled upon today on random but am totally grateful that I discovered.

After having finished watching the latest episodes of ‘Fight For My Way’, I went on youtube and came across a MV called “Who Do You Love?” by a band called The Black Skirts – a Korean indie band from HIGHGRND, an independent indie label started by Epik High’s very own Tablo. I’m not a big fan of HIGHGRND and don’t really listen to the music of the artists/groups from the label, but knowing Tablo and seeing some familiar names under the label, I am more than positive that HIGHGRND artists make amazing music (it’s just that I don’t listen to them).

So then today I happened to randomly stumble upon a music video by The Black Skirts and oh boy was I in love with the music video. I don’t really care for music videos (I know surprisingly) and care for more the music and albums so for this music video to have been able to capture my attention and interest and support – it was just totally different. While I still don’t have a good grasp of what the music video is about, I fell in love with how sweet and loving the couple was (apparently they’re couples in real life which is why it was so easy to play a couple in the MV) and not to mention the beautiful song by The Black Skirts themselves. I’m a total sucker for slow alternative songs like this and omg, this song is just so beautiful. It’s wonderful. Pair a wonderful song with a wonderful music video with beautiful actors and breath-taking cinematography and you win me over completely. Everything about this music video was great and I absolutely enjoyed everything about it. I was so caught up while watching it and that’s something that rarely happens to me so this music video was a great one to watch.

If you enjoyed ‘Who Do You Love?’, consider listening to the rest of their album ‘Team Baby.’ I took the time to listen to all the songs and there are plenty of other songs on the album that I love and enjoy as much as the title track. I’m quite glad I randomly decided to watch the music video, because now I discovered a great MV, a talented band from a talented agency, and some beautiful songs. So if you have nothing to do or you just came home from a day of work or school, turn up on this Tuesday with me by listening to the album and watching the music video! 😀

Credit:

HIGHGRND @ youtube, keu keu @ youtube

[What Mary Thinks] Fight For My Way (1/2)

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Now that school has finally finished, I have a little bit more free time now so I finally have some time to watch some dramas! I decided to do a little post about the two dramas that I’m currently watching just to share with y’all my thoughts on them so far and to discuss with y’all what y’all also think about them (this is the first post, the 2nd post of ‘Queen for 7 Days’ will come out later)

Prior to ‘Fight For My Way’ and ‘Queen for 7 Days’, I was watching ‘Suspicious Partner’ and ‘Ruler’ but I decided to drop both of those dramas simply because I wasn’t interested and addicted to them. They fell short of my expectations and I just didn’t simply care for the characters or storyline (sorry Yoo Seung Ho and Ji Chang Wook, even y’all couldn’t stop me from not watching the drama! Hope to see y’all in future dramas though!).

Moving on, I decided to give “Fight for my Way” and “Queen for 7 Days” a try and I’m quite glad that I did (unexpectedly). Both dramas are on two totally sides of the spectrum, with one being a modern drama and the other one a historical sageuk drama, but both being engaging and knowing how to keep their viewers sucked in. I’m glad that I’m watching both dramas, because now I have something to keep me occupied other than my variety shows that I always love and enjoy watching.

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“Fight For My Way” stars Park Seo Joon and Kim Ji Won as our main characters. Prior to watching the drama, I’ve always loved Seo Joon and although he hasn’t always had the best picks of dramas (Hwarang anyone?), I do think he’s a talented actor with quite some depth when he’s given characters that are multi-dimensional and he can express emotions and words quite well (+ his super good looks). As for Kim Ji Won, I’ve never really thought badly about her. I haven’t really seen her in anything other than ‘Heirs’ but even then I don’t really remember anything about her simply for the fact that I choose to not remember anything about that drama in the first place LOL. But I did think that Park Seo Joon and Kim Ji Won make a pretty cute and good-looking couple and after having watched 10 episodes of the drama, that belief still holds true.

There’s not really a strong plot in “Fight For My Way.” It’s just mainly about our two characters trying to make it out in the real world and trying to find ways to survive and make money and testing to see if their respective passions is the solution to making that money that they need to survive in life. And while things are working out so far for our main character Go Dong Man (played by Park Seo Joon), for Choi Ae Ra (played by Kim Ji Won) things aren’t looking so bright for her and her goal of wanting to be an announcer. While I want her to be able to achieve her goals of an announcer, I also think that at the same time maybe that’s not what she’s meant to be as we see her in the drama commanding the stage as an MC/host of some kind of event twice. It got me thinking that maybe in the end there are 2 good things she’s good at and although being an announcer is one of those things she’s good at, maybe being an MC/host is the other thing that she should consider because she’s just as great at it and maybe she will actually get hired and make money off of it. Whether she is to pursue that or not we will see in the future episodes, but it’ll be interesting to see what she does if her dreams of becoming an announcer does not work out.

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I enjoy the natural progression and pace that the drama has been showing us in regards to Dong Man and Ae Ra’s relationship. It makes sense as to why they would fall for each other over the years as they’ve been childhood friends and have grown up together. They’ve been there for each other at both their highest and lowest moments in life and have basically gone through everything together. I do think the romantic feelings have been there for a while now, especially in regards to how Ae Ra feels about Dong Man and liking him first, but I do think Dong Man also had maybe some kind of feeling for Ae Ra but was probably just clueless or uncertain about it all. The way they suppress their feelings for each other or pretend that they don’t like each other and are just friends is so cute because everyone else knows that they like each other as more than friends. With 10 episodes in, Dong Man and Ae Ra are explicitly showing their feelings for each other a lot more now and are even making strides by confessing to each other how they feel too. I squeal every time they’re together and I love how in the midst of all these feels and confusion and ambiguity and chaos, they still remain the same true versions of themselves that they were when they were just friends as well. I think it’s safe to say that because they started out as childhood friends and grew up together, they don’t have to change to impress the other or have to do certain things to make the other person like them. For Dong Man and Ae Ra, they’ve already seen all the sides to each other and appreciate and love each other for that. They might try to act differently at first once they become a couple, but maybe they’ll realize that staying the honest and real versions of themselves that they are both familiar with is the best outcome for them even when they become a couple. It’ll be great to see this unfold even more as the drama progresses.

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Moving on to the second lead couple with Joo Man and Seol-hee, I feel like their relationship is a little bit more complicated and complex than Ae Ra and Dong Man’s just simply because there’s so much ambiguity and confusion and secrets going on. Why doesn’t Joo Man want to marry Seol-hee? Why did they both feel the need to keep their relationship a secret and hide it from the rest of their co-workers? Why didn’t Joo Man just tell Ye-Jin that he’s in a relationship with Seol-hee and push her away? Why didn’t he stop her from pursuing him knowing that Seol-hee already knew what was happening? Why didn’t Seol-hee do anything herself? From the very first episode until now, I’ve rooted for Joo Man and Seol-hee ever since the very first episode where she got scolded by her boss and then Joo Man basically swooped in to save Seol-hee. That scene was so touching and sweet to me that I became a fan of theirs ever since that episode, but in all honesty it has only ever gotten worse from there. I’m a little bit more lenient on Joo Man not wanting to marry Seol-hee yet for financial reasons despite having been together for six years. He wants to be in a good financial state and be able to do all that he wants to do with her as a married couple without having to worry about money and finance. Sure, that I can put up with.

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But I just don’t understand why he doesn’t just tell Ye-jin that he’s in a relationship with Sul-hee for six years and that he doesn’t like her. By not telling her, it has only made things worse and has put everyone in a sour position. Is he embarrassed to tell people he’s with Sul-hee? Will his position at work be threatened if he does? Is it because his feelings for Sul-hee aren’t as strong anymore because there’s Ye-jin now who keeps tugging along and confessing her feelings for Joo Man? A part of me believes that he’s a little shaken up by Ye-jin and therefore continues to do stuff for her and meet with her even though he doesn’t have to because there are boundaries that should be set in place as co-workers. But he doesn’t set any boundaries or doesn’t acknowledge them and when he doesn’t know how to stay within those boundaries and you have Ye-jin already breaking them and going all over the place, it becomes a messy outcome for everyone. I’ve read comments about how Sul-hee should be brave and not be so submissive and weak and just straight up tell Ye-jin about their relationship. I don’t blame Sul-hee and while I do want her to grow a backbone a little bit (in which she has in the latest episode), I want Joo Man to hold himself accountable for everything. I want Joo Man to be responsible for the issues that’s arisen in their relationship and to be straightforward with everyone (especially Ye-jin) on everything. Sul-hee is stuck in a situation where she’s supposed to be quiet and to be submissive and not talk alot. She’s grown up like that so one just can’t expect her to all of a sudden stand up for herself and advocate for her relationship with Joo Man. She doesn’t know how to do that and she’s not in a position to. She’s just a regular employee at her workplace who often gets scolded and yelled at. No one really respects her at her workplace. Even with Joo Man’s family, they don’t really approve of her and also put her down. She’s trying her best to be the best for everyone (especially for Joo Man who she supported while he was busy working and finishing school) so I understand and see why she would not be as strong and loud and out-going as people want her to be which is why I root for her. I like Sul-hee, I like her a lot. She’s given up so much for the ones she loves and cares about and she’s so kind-hearted which is why it breaks my heart and makes me absolutely infuriated when Joo Man goes off doing things with Ye-jin and lies to her just so he can “help” Ye-jin with work-related things. She’s done so much for him and then in the end gets treated like this. And worst of all, she has to confront this issue with Ye-jin because her boyfriend of six years doesn’t have the audacity or courage to do it himself (which goes back to the whole idea of how I believe he’s a bit shaken up because of his feelings for Ye-jin and might be losing feelings for Sul-hee himself). I’m glad Sul-hee stepped up to the plate and told Ye-jin about her relationship with Joo Man, but I also want him to do the same and stay true to his words. In the latest episode, we just went back to where we started and it was frustrating.

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If anything, I want Sul-hee to break up with Joo Man herself to make him realize how much of a gem and diamond she’s worth so that he knows he won’t betray her next time and will maybe actually cherish her, do stuff for her as she’s done for him, and I don’t know maybe even marry her. But being in a relationship for six years, maybe things have gone stale. Joo Man is used to her now. He’s used to the daily routine. He’s gotten bored and he wants to do different things which is why he’s leaning a bit towards Ye-jin and it frustrates me that he’s become a bit careless in all of this. I understand that it’s suffocating for him as well having Sul-hee do and pay everything for him because he too wants to be in a position where he’s stable and well-off and doesn’t have to feel like he relies on Sul-hee for everything, but that’s been his excuse for everything. At one point or another, he’s gotta do something about the situation that he’s in. He either breaks everything off with Sul-hee and get with Ye-jin or vice versa. I feel like he’s in between right now, still staying with Sul-hee for whatever reasons, but leaning a little bit towards Ye-jin and it frustrates the heck out of me. Sul-hee’s literally bent her back working her butt off to pay and support Joo Man and in the end, lies, deceit, and a boy who interacts with his “intern” who doesn’t know how to back off and take no for an answer is all she gets? Sul-hee can do so much better and deserves so much better. I want Joo Man to do something about it or I want Sul-hee to end her relationship with Joo Man just so this will be a wake-up call for him and hopefully get him to realize how good he’s had it with Sul-hee. I hate seeing Sul-hee be treated like this when she treats everyone else so greatly and with so much love and warmth. She doesn’t deserve this. And in all honesty, the whole Sul-hee/Joo Man/Ye-jin thing has dragged on for too long now and I now no longer anticipate to see what will happen to them. I just want Ye-jin to leave because Joo Man told her to and for Joo Man to make it up to Sul-hee what he’s done. And if I’m going to be very very honest, you could have done this whole relationship issue without Ye-jin in the picture. There’s already a variety of issues that one could explore between Joo Man and Sul-hee considering that they’ve been in a relationship for six years, but why the drama chose the issue of having a side character be a threat to the relationship makes no sense to me. It actually frustrates me and I want it to be gone. I want to see Joo Man and Sul-hee strengthen their relationship after all that they’ve been through and get married in the end. Please show, please. Make it happen.

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Phew. Long rant lol. But moving forward, as frustrating and aggravating as some aspects of the show can be, I do appreciate the aspects of the drama that are quirky, funny, and satisfying. I love how comedic and silly all the characters are, but most of all I love how the relationships that they have with each other and the ideas of wanting to look successful so that others around them aren’t worried (Ae Ra & Dong Man’s relationship with their parents, Joo Man to Sul-hee, etc.). It’s such a simple concept, but one that is so difficult to achieve in reality and it’s been great watching this happen for our characters. In a world where they just want to achieve their life-long dreams and goals, they have to face the multiple obstacles and challenges that come with those goals and the reality that wakes them up to all this and it’s been interesting so far seeing them face their fears and biggest obstacles. Where this goes and where they’re headed we’ll find in the next few episodes, but I’m excited and I hope I won’t be pulling my hair out as I’ve been the past 10 episodes to see what happens to our characters.

Appreciation Post: Bangtan Boys/BTS (pt. 2) #4YearsWithBTS

 

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*sigh* Oh Bangtan.. the things you have done to me…What have you done to me?! /cries/

It’s been a while since my last appreciation post for BTS so I’m back with another one. I believe it’s been 2 years since I’ve last written an appreciation post for them on this blog and A LOT has happened within the last two years with both their music career as well as my experience as an ARMY so I thought it’d be good to post a new appreciation blog for them and provide an update on how I feel about them now to mark my progress and experience as an ARMY.

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In addition, today marks the 4th year since BTS has debuted on June 13, 2013 meaning it’s been 4 years since I’ve been with them! There are many many things to celebrate and commemorate and appreciate so I’m gonna try my best to write all those things I appreciate in this post.

It’s gonna be very challenging and difficult to write down everything about BTS that I’m proud of them for, that I want to say to them, that I love and appreciate about them so this post won’t fully engulf and encompass everything, but I guess that’s just what happens when you have too much love for a group of 7 talented, goofy, amazing, hardworking, and humble guys right? You just don’t know where to start?

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Since their debut 4 years ago, BTS has come a long way. They have come a very long way. 4 years ago they could barely gather 2,000 people to attend their concerts and fanmeetings. They were practicing and training endlessly for as long as 3 years with group member changes and additions without a hint of success or debut in sight. Just repeating the daily routine of training that they were so used to and hoping that they would debut one day and be able to stand on stage with the music that they were making. When I think back about how hard BTS had it or how much they were going through and then seeing where they are now, my heart hurts seeing just how bad it was for them years ago (b/c they’re my babys and I never want them to have to go through any pain or hurt or sadness) but also a sense of warmth also keeps me calm knowing that all their hard work has paid off. 4 years later here they are winning awards and daesangs and finishing up their sold-out world tour and being the first K-Pop group to ever win an award at the BBMA’s. There are so many accomplishments that BTS has achieved since their debut and although I can’t list every single one in this post because there would be too many and that would take a little bit too much time, they’ve grown and have done so much and as an ARMY who’s been there since the very beginning with their debut, I couldn’t be any prouder.

As my earlier blog post mentioned, I had the privilege, chance, and amazing opportunity to see BTS live at concert for their Wings concert in Anaheim, LA (I still can’t believe I saw them to this day tbh). During the concert, Rap Monster mentioned about how BTS only had 2,000 fans during their concert 2 years ago and 2 years later here they are performing at sold-out concerts all over the world. It’s a huge accomplishment for them, especially they were able to do this within a time span of 2 years since their last concert tour. For BTS, success definitely did not come easy just as how it doesn’t come easy for other groups, but especially for BTS who came from a small company, debuted at a time when the K-Pop music industry was already over-saturated as it was with new and existing idol groups, and didn’t have much to begin with, they had to work even harder to get to where they are now. And it was through this hard work and determination that they were able to win daesangs and gain millions of fans throughout the world. Sometimes words can’t describe the process and journey that BTS had to go through to get to where they are now. For Rap Monster and Suga who were the starting members of BTS, they were so poor and they barely had any money and they were struggling to live and to make money and to buy food and were dealing with mental health issues and depression, but a few years later and here they are making hella money and being able to afford luxurious food such as lobster and steak in the United States. Hard work does pay off and for BTS they’re finally seeing their hard work come to life. As an ARMY of 4 years, you feel a sense of happiness and joy in seeing them happy and successful. I’m also really proud of how far they’ve come, because they’ve worked so hard to get to where they are now and I wouldn’t have wanted things to be any other way. What’s meant to be will happen and BTS was meant to be this successful and important in many people’s lives.

Individual Members:

Speaking about BTS as a whole makes me wanna cry, but I get even more emotional just thinking about what I appreciate about each member because they’re all so precious and BTS wouldn’t be BTS without each of them. #7-1=0

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Jin: I really appreciate just how goofy, clumsy, and free Seokjin is. He doesn’t hold back anymore and he always so freaking extra but I absolutely love that about him. He doesn’t try to fit himself into this (false) image that people might have of him and he doesn’t act like someone he’s not; he acts like himself and he’s not afraid to embarrass himself (or the other members). He’s true to himself and to his fans and he acts the way he wants to which I appreciate. He’s proud of his dad jokes and he takes pride in being the oldest of BTS and he’s okay with not being the best dancer of BTS. It’s so refreshing to see someone like Jin be proud of himself and to be confident in his looks (he has every right to be proud of his looks cus damn boi be looking hella fine all the time) and to act like himself, because often times in the K-Pop industry, all people care about are their looks and their image which then places them into this box where they end up acting in certain ways to fit the image that people has molded of them or that they have of themselves, but for Seokjin, he really doesn’t care about any of that and he is just himself (aka he’s not fake). On camera, his ‘extra-ness’ might him look childish or immature, but I’m pretty sure as the oldest of the group, he also takes really good care of the other members. He feels this sense of responsibility to look over the other members, to cook for them, to drive them places (aka taking Jungkook to high school when our maknae was still attending school), etc etc. so he might seem kiddish on camera but off camera I’m pretty sure there’s a mature side of him that we don’t often get to see. Seokjin is full of confidence and he loves himself and he accepts all his flaws and mistakes and I love that about him. Yeah, he might not be the best dancer in BTS but he tries his best and he’s continually improving and he still manages to catch up with the rest of the members in terms of learning and performing the choreography. Yeah, he might not be the best vocalist in BTS, but he has such a soft and alluring voice who can belt high notes if needed and who can sing with emotions and feels as demonstrated in ‘Awake.’ There have been complaints regarding Seokjin’s position in BTS and how he doesn’t really serve a purpose in BTS, but he is and does so much more than just the shallow conventional kind of roles and positions that is expected in idol groups. He is more than just his singing and dancing in BTS; he is BTS’s oldest member who takes great care of the other members by looking out for them and supporting them (not to mention the immense pressure and guilt he faces being the oldest of BTS). Honestly, we don’t even know everything that he does for BTS. He could (and probably is) doing so much more for them that we don’t know about or aren’t exposed to. Seokjin is so pivotal to BTS so no, he is not useless in BTS. Even if he’s not necessarily the strongest in singing and dancing (fuck your conventional expectations of singing and dancing being the only standards that determines talent in a group), that doesn’t mean that he’s useless and should be kicked out. Jin is needed in BTS every single way. And. He. Is. Important. ily jin. love me too pls.

Suga: Suga and I have had a very interesting relationship. In my fanaccount of my concert experience, I talked about how Yoongi was my least favorite member in BTS, but all of this changed ever since the concert. Ever since the concert, my perception and thoughts of Yoongi has changed positively. Before the concert, I didn’t really pay as much attention to him as I did with the other members and he was my least favorite member in BTS, but seeing him live and watching him perform changed everything. He performs with such passion and determination and intensity you can just feel his madness and the fire he spits out during his raps. You feel it, you see it, you can smell it – it’s amazing how much stage energy Yoongi has. His performance of ‘First Love’ was one of my favorite performances at the concert and I’m forever shook and changed by that performance because now I cannot listen to ‘First Love’ the same way ever again without thinking about his performance nor can I look at Yoongi the same way again. My level of appreciation for him has definitely increased significantly since the concert to where now I care for him a lot more and is taking a lot more interest in him and who he is (not that I didn’t before but you know what I’m saying). I’m not really sure how to articulate this change in appreciation; it just kind of happened and now I love Yoongi so so much more than I did before. I find myself attracted to him even more whenever I see him in videos or GIFs. I know it sounds ridiculous, but I’m a lot more attracted to him now and I find him a lot more charming as well. The way that he always wants to sleep or work on music are feelings that I definitely can relate to. I always want to sleep too and I love music so like there are things that I have in common with Yoongi (delusions aside). I appreciate how passionate he is with music, exploring and solidifying his identity as Agust D and now even composing for artists like Suran. He’s taking huge steps as an artist and musician, writing lyrics and helping produce songs not only for BTS but now for other people as well which is a huge stepping stone and a move that requires a lot of confidence and courage so I’m proud of Yoongi for doing this. It’s not easy to make music for others, much less make music in general, but he’s doing it and there’s a sense of pride that I feel as an ARMY knowing this. Yoongi isn’t the type to show his feelings or emotions so when I saw him breaking down during the MAMA Awards when BTS won the Daesang, it especially hit me because we often don’t get to witness that side of him. And it also made me really just think about how difficult and painful and doubtful times must have been for him and Namjoon pre-debut. They both endured years of training not knowing if they were going to debut, if they were going to make any money, if they were going to be successful, etc. Just imagine living with a few other members and going on with your daily routine of training for years while being clouded with thoughts of doubt and uncertainty and hopelessness. Yoongi went through a very rough and difficult time pre-debut. He sold albums on the streets before entering Big Hit and barely made any profit off of his CD’s because no one would buy from him. He wasn’t making any money so he got accepted into Big Hit and was able to develop and improve his skills in rapping, song writing, composing, etc. and look at where all of those years of devotion and investment and hard work has lead him to. He is now in BTS, successful as ever, and a lead rapper of this amazing group. I can’t even get started on his rapping as well. I’m not Korean nor am I an expert on rapping so I can’t say much about it, but I would like to believe that his rapping is exceptional and different. All I can say is you don’t want to mess with Yoongi when it comes to rapping because he is a beast. His rapping is out of this world. I cry when I listen to his verses in the BTS cyphers, because he’s just that good (I cry and scream internally when he raps). But yes, Yoongi is amazing throughout and I appreciate how courageous and determined he always is even when it seems like all odds are against him.

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Rap Monster: It breaks my heart when I think about Rap Monster, because a part of me feels like he’s so insecure and doubtful about himself. He’s uncertain and doubtful about his lyrics, about the songs he helps produce, about his music, about everything he does and it pains my heart to see this because he’s amazing at everything and anything he does. He’s so talented, so intelligent, so creative, so charming, so attractive, and yet everyone sees this but himself. It’s obvious that he’s all of these things and so much more but himself. Rap Monster has so much potential and we’ve been fortunate enough to have witnessed that potential through BTS’s music, performances, concerts, videos, collaborations, etc etc and I wish Rap Monster wouldn’t think so badly about himself. I know (and he always talks about it) that he is always so constantly worried about being the leader of BTS. It’s such a huge weight on his shoulders and he feels insecure and doubtful about his leadership skills and his responsibility as the leader of BTS. He doesn’t know if he’s doing a good job or he feels as if he’s not and I want him to know that there are many factors and reasons as to why BTS is as successful and huge as they are now and I sincerely and honestly believe that Rap Monster’s position as the leader is one of those reasons that has contributed significantly to BTS’s journey to success. You don’t often explicitly see Rap Monster as the leader where he shoves it in your face that he’s the leader of BTS; his leadership I would say happens more behind the scenes whether that’s him writing lyrics for the album songs or during practices where he might lead and advise the members how to do certain things or in other situations which is why I remember watching a clip of BTS where they were about to perform and they were all huddled ready to get on stage and Rap Monster was talking to them about what they should do on stage and all the members looked at him and gave him their utmost respect and attention and I think it was in this moment that I thought to myself, omg I’m finally witnessing Rap Monster be the leader of BTS (I think it especially hit me when I saw Jin staring at Rap Monster and listening to him attentively b/c he’s the eldest of the group but he’s paying such great attention to Rap Monster). I remember at one point I was very in love with Rap Monster. I had completely fallen in love with him and I didn’t know what these feelings were b/c I never had any other feelings for the other BTS members other than for Jimin so here Rap Monster was swerving into my lane and I’m completely baffled and confused. But the reason as to why I was so into him at that time (I still am now but I’ve calmed down) was b/c this was around the time of the BBMA’s and seeing just how hard-working Rap Monster was being the representative of BTS and answering all the interview questions in english and translating the questions to the other BTS members so they wouldn’t feel left out as well and also understand what was going on and basically just representing BTS in another country in another language that is not his own made me so proud which is why I fell for him so hard. I wrote a tumblr post about this where I said:

1) i love how great of a leader he is

2) the way he talked in English so effortlessly and flawlessly (that he taught himself mind you) during all the 500000 interviews he did at the BBMA’s

3) the way he took care of the other members by translating to them the questions so they weren’t excluded and didn’t always feel confused and so they knew what was going on and could have some fun as well and so it wasn’t always just him talking

4) the inspirational things he said in his winning speech like how we should love ourselves (we know how much this means to bts themselves when majority of their songs is about this and to rap mon in particular who sings about it in ‘reflection’)

5)  the way he looked HELLA ALMIGHTY DAMN FIIIIINE AT THE BBMA’S WITH THAT HAIR THOSE LIPS THAT FOREHEAD (HNGGGG FOREHEAD IS MY WEAKNESS) THOSE DIMPLES THAT SMILE LIKE NAMJOON PLS HAVE MERCY i beg U

6) the way he always thanks ARMY’s (regardless of where they’re from) for everything every single time

7) the way he always remains hella humble even though bts just won an award at BBMA’s and was the first kpop group to ever do so (aka making history and maintaining that bts legacy) and how even though bts has gotten hella big over the years both domestically and internationally with their sold out world tours and now with the BBMA’s, he never forgets where he came from or how he got to where he is (mentioning in that one BBMA interview after they had won the award that bts and big hit started out small and weren’t big names in kpop back then)

LIKE IDK WHAT ELSE NAMJOON IS GONNA DO THAT’S GONNA MAKE MY HEART SWAY LEFT AND RIGHT UP AND DOWN SIDE TO SIDE UPSIDE DOWN AND UP RIGHT AND I’M SO FUCKED B/C THIS HAS NEVER HAPPENED TO ME BEFORE WITH NAMJOON BUT I’M NOT EVEN GONNA TRY TO FIGHT IT ANYMORE AND JUST ACCEPT IT AND GO ALONG WITH IT AND SEE HOW LONG THIS WILL LAST AND WHERE THIS WILL GO B/C EVERYTHING HE’S DONE UP TO THIS POINT HAS GOT ME SO WHIPPED FOR HIM AND HE’S SO GOD DAMN ATTRACTIVE

but don’t misunderstand i will always have heart eyes for jimin but damn. kim fucking nam fucking joon tho y’all

And I told this to my friend and I remember her just texting me back like “MARY?! IS THIS YOU?! THIS ISN’T YOU YOU’RE NOT LIKE THIS” (b/c I only got eyes for Jimin ya know?) and it was just so funny because I also felt the same way. Like I don’t know why I was feeling this way for our leader and why i was caught up in these feels and i was so confused b/c I’ve never felt that way before for any other member LOL. But it was just funny and I wish Rap Monster would give himself lots of credit for being the leader of BTS and taking on such an important, heavy, and critical role in the group. I also noticed that Rap Monster also worries a lot about the future and in particular the future of BTS and where they’re gonna be a few years from now which is why I think he (and the rest of BTS) are so humble. They understand that yes, they have worked so hard to get to where they are now, but they could lose all of that at any moment so they work even harder and they appreciate the moments they are in right now. I would want Rap Monster to know that he is doing a wonderful job as the leader of BTS and I want him to love himself more and not be so doubtful and uncertain about himself because he’s amazing and he’s so talented and well-rounded. Like he said in his BBMA award speech, love myself love yourself. Please love yourself more Kim Namjoon :’)

J-hope: Oh no… I can’t write about Hobi. I just can’t! My heart hurts when I think about him. He deserves everything good in this world. He’s an angel. AN ANGEL AND HE DOESN’T DESERVE TO BE SAD OR MAD OR ANY OF THE SHIT THAT HE GETS. I don’t know what to say about him or where to start because there are so many wonderful things about J-hope that I love and appreciate. I think more than anything and this is quite obvious too b/c it’s implied through his name but I really appreciate just how energetic Hobi is and I think I came to appreciating this aspect of him a lot more after the concert. He was so energetic even though literally the night before BTS had also performed (b/c Anaheim was a 2-day stop) and that whole week had done interviews left and right and I’m pretty sure they were also practicing for the concert in between all of this. He was so energetic and gave every single performance his all and he was always constantly smiling and laughing and had a smile on his face. I literally saw the sunshine that day; I had never seen anything so bright before in my life. He performed with such energy and stamina it was out of this world. He performed as if that was his first time performing in like 6 months it was crazy. But that’s what I love about Hobi. He always puts all his effort into everything he does even though he might be really tired and even though BTS might have had hella schedules and events to do. He doesn’t let those things affect him and he tries his best all the time. I know that things have been really hard for Hoseok with people telling him to leave from BTS and that he was ugly which made him work even harder and placed him in a bad situation, but I would want him to know that he’s freaking amazing and he’s a born performer and I’ve never seen anything or anyone like him before. He’s truly different and I appreciate how hardworking and hopeful he remains despite having gotten stupid shit from people since his debut. Thanks for being the moodmaker of BTS and being the hope and sunshine that everyone needs every single day Jung Hoseok. I know it’s hard having to keep up with this image especially since there are times where you’re not always bright or hopeful and go through things, but you still try your best for us fans. I really appreciate and admire and love you for that. But please do take care of yourself as well because you are so important and crucial to BTS. We need you so you can continue to lead the members with the choreography and help them with the dances and advise them on what to do and not what to do or so you can keep saying funny jokes or do outrageous and silly things or freak out over things like snakes and bugs and ghosts. We need you so please take care of yourself my love.

V: Oh Tae.. oh V.. there are so many wonderful things about V I don’t even know where to start. He’s such a random and goofy and weird and ridiculous guy, but that’s what I love and appreciate about him. He’s seriously so random and does some of the most weirdest things ever or say some of the funniest things ever, but I think that’s what so unique and different about him. There’s always at least one member in every group who’s 4D and in BTS that happens to be everyone V. Just imagining what BTS would be like if V wasn’t in the group makes me sad and it just feels weird. As everyone knows, he was the “hidden member” of the group for some reason and he wasn’t exposed to the public until BTS’s debut got closer and closer. And I remember him talking about how he felt sad that he couldn’t talk to the fans or record any “logs” like how the rest of the members were doing b/c it was Big Hit’s plan to hide him until the very last second. Poor V. People didn’t even know that he existed until BTS’s debut. But now, here he is, standing on stage and performing throughout the world in different places and with different songs. I really admire him for his quirky traits and characteristics and his passion for fashion and art and music. It seems like he’s super into those things right now because he mentions about Gucci all the time or about how he’s into art and photography and it’s great seeing him be so curious and passionate about these subjects and topics. And I feel like V’s the type to devote all his time and energy into something he’s interested in which is what I admire about him (compared to me who has an attention span of like 2 seconds). Because of V, I laugh at his random and funny comments. I cry because he looks incredible on stage. I cry because he cries. And I smile because he cares and loves ARMY’s and BTS. He’s such a sweetheart. I also feel like he’s lowkey also innocent and naive but that might just be how I see him and maybe he’s not so innocent (wink wink). But yes, V is so precious and treasured and I love him to small bits. And pls, if you haven’t already listened to this song, please do yourself a favor and listen to it. Thanks.

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Jungkook: Oh no, here comes the post about the one member I don’t want to talk about. I don’t even know what to say about Jungkook or where to start with this boy. He’s so freaking extra. LIKE YOU THINK YOU KNOW OR HAVE SEEN XTRA? SIT DOWN B/C YOU HAVEN’T. Jungkook is Jungextra and he’s so ridiculous and funny at times it makes me cry and go wild and go crazy. I can’t even handle him being so ridiculous and I’m only watching him through the screen I can’t even imagine talking to him and being extra with him. It’d be so much fun tbh. But omg, Jungkook is so adorable. I feel like a proud mother having watched Jungkook grow over the years. I first saw him in the “Graduation Song” MV with Jimin and Hoseok where he was so young, still extra, and didn’t know how to express his feelings and thoughts, but now he’s grown up to be very good looking, now emitting very seductive moves and looks on stage. Like why or how did this happen? I swear two seconds ago you barely spoke and then now here you are throwing pitches at a baseball game in Japan (this will be the biggest mystery of all time tbh). Like who are you? I feel hurt. But I am so proud of Jungkook. I think he’s grown tremendously personally/individually but also professionally. 4 years ago he didn’t want to sing for any of the BTS members and would actually cry if they kept asking him to and he didn’t talk and he was really shy and bad at expressing his feelings and then somehow I swear something must have happened and now he’s talking a lot more (uncontrollably) and he’s now showing a lot more aspects of his personality and who he really is to everyone. I lowkey miss his shy and quiet personality, but I also do really enjoy how he is now acting very wild and annoying and extra. It’s quite a show. For Jungkook, I will always have a soft spot for our Maknae. I think a big part of that is having seen him as a young kid mature and grow and develop into being the mature Maknae that he is now who constantly worries about his hyungs and cares about fans. He’s grown up to be such a wonderful person and he still remains humble and kind to this day, admitting that there are still many things he needs to improve on or like how he helped clean up trash after the ISAC event. It’s little things like these that I admire about Jungkook and I hope he never changes. He’s perfect the way he is.

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(i had the hardest time picking a single photo for jimin b/c there were so many great ones i wanted to pick omg i spent so much time choosing a photo for him. i spent more time choosing a photo for him than i did on this entire post)

Jimin: I don’t really know what to say about Jimin. There are many things about him that I love and admire and appreciate. Sometimes words can’t describe or explain how I feel about him. Jimin over the years has gotten a little bit more reserved and quiet and although there are many reasons that could factor into that and although I really do miss how he used to be so explicitly silly and quirky, I still love him just as much now. I do miss his out-going and random and funny comments and personality traits and I think he’s still the same person, just not as often or explicit now which is totally okay. My little baby always feels so insecure and doubtful about himself and it pains me to see this because he’s so great at everything he does. He works so hard all the time to improve and to get better at singing, dancing, and performing among a variety of other things, but he doesn’t think he’s improving and so he stays stuck at the same place over and over again and he doesn’t see any improvement so he puts himself down and it hurts to listen to him say these things because he’s also grown so much. He puts in so much work, time, and effort into practicing and the results of all that practicing has shown and bloomed throughout the 4 years and will continue to show. In addition to his commitment and dedication into always improving and being a better version of himself than he is now, I also really appreciate just how supportive, caring, kind, and encouraging Jimin is. Countless amount of times, from BTS in AHL up to now, he’s also been the hypemaster of every BTS member. He continually supports them and compliments them and praises them (which makes sense as to why he would want the same in return). Jimin is my ultimate bias in BTS and my second bias in all of K-Pop and I remember just watching his live stage of “Lies” at the KBS Gayo Daejun and just thinking to myself like, wow, I picked the right member to stan. I made the best decision of my life by choosing Jimin as my favorite member in BTS. I was so proud watching that. His dancing has always been consistent and solid and powerful and great 4 years ago as it is now. I remember watching the special dance stage of him, J-hope, and Jungkook 4 years ago and being amazed and stunned and proud of Jimin who was getting the spotlight as main dancer of BTS in that special dance stage and then fast forward 3 and a half years later and here he is performing his solo song on an award ceremony and collaborating with legendary Taemin who also started off really young with great dancing skills. There were so many emotions I was going through when I was watching Jimin be in all these special dance collaborations and stages with other idols where he was not only getting to show his dancing talent and all the attention that came with that but he was also representing the rest of BTS and it was just a huge accomplishment and feat and I felt so proud. I always believed in Jimin’s dancing back then and I always knew he was a great dancer and I so wished for everyone else to also see that and to also notice how talented he was dancing and over the years he’s had little opportunities here and there to showcase them but the end of last year’s shows was really the one opportunity where maybe folks started to notice his dancing skills a little bit more b/c he was performing on stage with other idols and dancing to songs that weren’t BTS’s. Seeing all of this definitely just made me really proud and happy for Jimin because my baby’s dancing skills are finally being appreciated and shown to the rest of the world and he’s finally gaining recognition for something that he’s so passionate about and that I noticed since the very beginning. I know that he’s so insecure about many things, including his body and his looks and I don’t want him or the rest of BTS or anyone else to think that those things define who he is and how he should look like. I don’t want anyone making fun of him for his body and how he doesn’t have abs anymore and I don’t want him to think that way either. Sure, those things are great and are bonus points, but there are so many other things that actually matter and I am totally okay if he doesnt have abs. I actually don’t even care if he doesn’t have abs because I love him for who he is and his personality and his smile and all the other traits of him that makes up who he is. He’s so squishy and smol and talented and passionate and hard-working and he always cares about us fans as well and loves us so much and he’s just a perfect human being in my eyes. I will always have heart eyes for Jimin no matter what.

If I Could Say Anything to BTS // Dear _______,

taehyung: i know things have been a lot harder lately even though things have always been hard from the beginning. i know you try to pretend like everything’s fine so no one worries but a lot goes through your mind. i know you’ve been struggling to cope and process with your grandma’s passing and i’m so sorry my dear. my love. i know the pain. i understand the hurt. i empathize with the sadness that you’re feeling – the emptiness. i too lost my grandpa not too long ago who i also cherished and truly loved and was raised by. but i want you to know that in time things will get better. you don’t have to put up a front to act like everything’s ok if things aren’t. it’s okay to struggle; it’s okay that you’re struggling. that you’re not ok b/c sometimes you’re not always gonna be okay and that’s totally okay. take as much time as you need to yourself; to process your grandma’s passing. maybe you won’t ever be able to heal from the loss and that’s ok too. taehyung my love, you will be fine. i worry that you worry too much and is too sad and i don’t want you to be in continuous hurt. i wish for you to be happy too. just know that in time everything will be ok and everything will fall into place as it should be.

namjoon: i wish you wouldn’t blame yourself for things that aren’t your fault or is out of your control. i wish you wouldn’t be so insecure and doubtful about your skills, talents, and knowledge. i wish you wouldn’t underestimate how humble, intelligent, and creative u r. i wish you wouldn’t put yourself down and believe that you’re not a great leader. namjoon you are so much more than everything you think you are. i hope you realize how amazing and talented you are. YOU are the leader that bts needs. there are so many factors that have played a role in the success and journey of bts and your leadership is def one of them. so pls don’t discredit your role in this journey and instead give yourself some credit. i know there might be a lot of pressure for having to tackle the job of being the leader to one of kpop’s biggest boy groups who’s paving the road and foundation for many other kpop groups to follow, who continually makes history every single day. but you’re doing an amazing job at it so far and i need you to realize that. yes you might have made some mistakes in the past but you’ve grown and youve apologized and you know so much better now. bts wouldn’t be where bts is right now if it wasn’t for you who has helped with the composition and lyrics of many songs from debut up until now. you speak with such eloquence and wisdom, you always put the other members before yourself and is always thinking about them. you never want to take the spotlight so you give it to them instead. you communicate with fans all around the world and always mentions army’s where ever and whenever you can. you never forget about us but i hope that in the process of appreciating bts and army’s, you too don’t forget about yourself. b/c you play just as much of a critical and pivotal role in bts and i am so proud of you. so pls be proud of yourself as well my love.

Hoseok: Hobi you know you don’t have to always be smiling and energetic and happy if you don’t want to or don’t have the capacity to do so right? You know that just b/c your stage name is J-hope doesn’t mean that you always have to be someone’s hope or have hope yourself or believe that hope will always exist? You don’t have to carry the burden of being the moodmaker and energy of the group if that’s too much pressure on you or doesn’t accurately represent you. I hope you wouldn’t put too much weight and pressure on yourself just b/c that’s what’s expected of you and is what you’ve been doing the past 4 years since bts’s debut. it’s okay if you’re sad or mad or exhausted and if youre not always happy and energetic and hopeful. it’s totally okay. i will understand and so will others. i understand that there will be days where you won’t feel hopeful or you won’t feel happy and instead you’re gonna be sad or scared or doubtful about things. you’re probably gonna have a shitty day or something’s happened to you that makes you mad. and that’s okay. i don’t want you to stress over having this hopeful image just b/c it’s been assigned to you as if it’s something you absolutely have to do and follow and continue out everyday. b/c it’s not. you can do whatever you want and you can be whatever you want. you just being yourself – you just existing is already the hope and light to many people’s lives. you yourself is already enough my love. so please, don’t feel the pressure to be and do more than you’re already doing. you’re amazing my love.

Yoongi: i really admire you for not only your talent and passion that is clearly demonstrated in your music and performances. but i also really admire your ‘idgaf’ kind of attitude where you do whatever you want and say whatever you feel like saying. you kind of care less about how people feel and is more in tune to doing what you want or feel like doing and i admire and appreciate that about you. just knowing that you won’t change based on what people say about you b/c you know yourself more than anyone else or b/c you know that really the only opinion that matters in the end is yourself’s. i know that times have been hard especially with the past and you’ve really went through it all. you’ve worked so hard my love and you’re gonna continue to do great and amazing things. i can’t wait to witness that as i stay by BTS’s side. thank you for being such a passionate person, an intense rapper, a crazy good performer, a wacky BTS member, and for just being Min Yoongi.

seokjin: you must be really proud of your shoulders LOL. to have been born with such broad and strong shoulders and talk about them and show them off at every opportunity that you get. but that’s also the thing that i really love about you. you love yourself (even though there are times that you don’t which is totally ok) and that you are confident (vs cocky). i remember the one time where you mentioned about how it’s okay to be going through things and that you should never compare yourself to others; that just b/c someone else might also be going through things (things that are worse than yours) doesn’t mean that yours is any less significant or valid and that’s stuck out to me ever since i’ve watched that video. i live my life by that rule. since i’ve been in college i’ve practiced and emphasized on the importance of that — never invalidate yourself or your experiences. never compare yourself and your stories and experiences to anyone else’s. never think that just b/c someone else is going through rough or rougher times than you are that your issues and problems are invalid or that they don’t matter. b/c they do matter and you matter as well. so when you said that in the video, my love and appreciation for you grew so much more than it already had. in that moment i learned that you too understand this concept of validating your own experiences and existence and it meant so much to me b/c all my life i’ve always heard people tell me that i should place others before myself or ive’ heard people compare their hardships to mine and invalidate how i feel b/c they’ve gone through much worse or had it much worse than i did which made me feel bad and caused me to internalize so much negativity and perpetuate the cycle that i should always place others before me and the toxic thoughts that i dont’ matter or that i’m not going through anything difficult or challenging so i shouldn’t complain or i should just try harder. so kim seokjin, i’d like to thank you for the positive messages and words of encouragement that you continually give. they mean so much. although this one message is just one of the many wonderful messages you have given and you probably don’t even remember saying it, i still do and it honestly means the world to me to have heard from you a motto and concept that i live by and follow every single day. so thank you and thank you.

jungkook: although you are not my main bias in bts you are my second bias and i will ALWAYS have a soft spot for you. always. there’s just something about me having watched you transform from a fetus to a baby within the last 4 years and having witnessed you grow in so many ways that makes me proud and feel like i’m a mother watching her adorable little kid mature and grow and develop to be the amazing person that they were destined to be. i love how goofy you can be. i love how you always find ways to cheer the other members up. b/c you’re the youngest, you feel this pressure to impress your hyung’s and to act certain ways or to do things in a way that won’t bring any burdens onto your hyung’s. you care about them so much and you always talk about how sad you get when you see the other members sad or how much of an impact it makes on you when you see the other members beaten up and broken down. if anything this just shows how innocent and genuine and caring and kind-hearted you are. and i hope that nothing will ever cause you to change or that you will never change. i hope that you’ll stay this way for life my love. there are still so many things in life that you’ve yet to experience or to witness or know about and a part of me wants to protect you from the negativity and evil that goes on in the world b/c i don’t want anything bad to happen to you or for you to be negatively affected by anything. youre still so young and innocent and naive and have so many things to learn and have so many more ways to grow and so many more years to live and just knowing that you’ll be doing this with the rest of the bts members for the next few years warms my heart and makes me happy. thank you for always being so damn extra b/c although it can get really ridiculous it brings so much happiness and laughter into everyone’s life. thank you for always going out of your own way to make others happy and laugh and smile and feel better; thank you for always thinking about others and putting others before yourself. thank you for always being so humble and modest and admitting that you’re not great at everything (even though you really are) and for being so hardworking to improve on things that you feel you aren’t as strong in. thank you for being the maknae of the group and taking care of your hyungs. thank you for just being you jeon jungkook. you’re so precious and you must be protected at all times.

jimin: and i always save you for my last b/c you’re my first, last, and ultimate bias in bts who i will never betray and always remain loyal to but b/c you’ve claimed a spot as my second bias in all of k-pop (just after yoseob my hubby) which is a really great feat, can be difficult to accomplish, and is something that no other person has been able to do so yes park jimin, you should be proud of yourself. i don’t even know where to start with you. i first laid my eyes on you 4 years ago in the ‘no more dream’ mv and ever since then my eyes have always wandered to you and have never gone anywhere else. idk i think it was meant to be (LOL THIS IS SO CHEESY OMG BUT I GOTTA DO IT). you make me incredibly proud to be your fan, to stan you, to have chosen you as my bias in bts when there are 6 other amazing boys i could have chosen instead. but i chose you (okay i admit based on your looks and abs) after having gotten to know you better over the years and i don’t regret anything. i’m glad i chose you as my bias. i wouldn’t change anything. if i had to go back to watch the ‘no more dream’ mv like how i did four years ago and choose a bias, i would still choose you in the end. i know you have low self-esteem issues and you have a praising kink and you dont’ think that you’re good enough or don’t feel confident in yourself and it pains my heart to see this. jimin you are so great. pls tell me who were the people who made you feel this way b/c i will go and destroy them myself. i hope you receive the love and care and support and appreciation that you give to so many people. i hope you deserve all the good in this world and so much more b/c you are that worthy and important. i hope you would stop putting yourself down and stop thinking so negatively about yourself. i hope you’ll learn to love yourself in time slowly, one step at a time. i think a small draft that i wrote on my tumblr sums up how i feel about you:

dear jimin,

i hope you know you are loved. i hope you know that you are enough. i hope you know that you deserve the world and more than the world. you deserve everything. you deserve the best. you deserve happiness. laughters. smiles. tears of both happiness and joy.

it’s been about 4 years since my eyes have first laid upon you and i don’t regret anything that’s happened ever since then. my love for you from the very first time i saw you up to now has never changed. if anything, it has only grown for you even more. my love for you has strengthened and gotten louder over time.

you are so kind. and so sweet. and you care a lot. you care so much – too much maybe to the point where you become sensitive to things and you let it get to you. and i know. i know there are days that b/c you care so much about everything you struggle. and i know that b/c you care about so many things there are days that are much harder than others.

but jimin my love, do not be afraid. and do not be sad. for you are worth more than whatever people say about you. you are good enough and you will always be good enough. pls do not take to heart all the harsh and painful things people might say about you; they don’t know you like i do. they haven’t seen you in the raw and real moments like i have. they don’t even know you.

so i ask that you be strong. be strong for bts, be strong for army’s, be strong for your family and friends and for those who matter to you, but also pls, be strong most importantly for yourself. some days loving yourself will be harder than others and some days you won’t love yourself at all. there will be moments where you don’t love yourself and where all you can do is just attack yourself and put yourself down but jimin my love, i hope that on your journey to self-love and self-care and self-appreciation, you will kindly remind yourself that you are loved. that you are enough. that you are worthy. and that you are park jimin and no one can take that away from you. you are you; you are one of a kind. a star in the dark vast galaxy. the light that is ever so shining and bright.

i love you and i always will. this isn’t a farewell letter or note or anything. rather, it’s just my way of declaring my love for you in ways that i know will never reach you. but i do it anyways b/c i love you. you are precious and you are amazing.

dear jimin my love, i love you.

Everything in this letter still rings true. i love the way you smile, the way you sing, the way you dance, and yes, even the way you pull your hair back all the time with your hand. you’re so smol, so cute, but also really freaking seductive and sexy and hot at times and it drives me crazy. but it’s all these things and so much more about you that i love and appreciate. so i hope you never change and i hope you stay this way. i love you so much. so so much that sometimes words can’t describe or explain what i feel for you. i appreciate you in ways that i have never done with anyone else. you bring so much light and greatness and happiness into my life. i’m so grateful that i was able to have seen you with my very own eyes on April 2, 2017. hell, i was nervous af and i was shaking b/c i couldn’t believe that the person that i absolutely love and care and support was right in front of my eyes. but there you were right in front of me and i am truly blessed and one of the luckiest people alive to have seen you in person. i’m so grateful and blessed that i was able to be in the same place at the same time and moment as you; to have been breathing the same air you were breathing (ok that’s kind of creepy but you get what i mean) and to have heard you singing and performing to the songs that i love and listen to everyday. i am grateful to be alive. i am blessed by your existence and presence. so park jimin my love, i love you. thank you for being you. thank you for being true. thank you for being here.

 

This post took me weeks to start and complete so here is the end result — just in time for their 4th anniversary. God, it makes me surprised when I think about how it’s been 4 year since BTS’s debut. Time has passed by really fast (“time flows like stars”). The past 4 years has definitely had its up’s and down’s; the members went through a lot and had to deal with a lot shit from people and have gone through plenty of trials, errors, mistakes, failures, and even possible disbandment. It’s crazy to think about the BTS now vs. the BTS 4 years ago. Who would have known that the small BTS that debuted from a small unknown company 4 years ago who barely had the funds and money to support BTS would transform into being one of the biggest kpop groups right now setting trends and history left and right every single day? You just don’t think that’s possible because it’s rare to see a case like that nowadays in K-Pop. But for BTS, who literally placed all their blood, sweat, and tears both pre and post debut have hit the jackpot. They’re here now and they’re not gonna leave anytime soon. They were definitely rewarded for the hard work that they put into their music careers; hard work does pay off and BTS is the epitome of that.

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Even though they’ve grown so much internationally and domestically throughout the years, I think the thing about them that I love, appreciate, and admire the most about them is just that they remain true to themselves. They never forget their roots, where they came from, and the struggles and challenges they faced pre-debut. Those sad and difficult memories are the things that motivate them to keep doing the work they’re doing and to keep them grounded despite having earned such great levels of success. They understand (and worry about often) that just because they’re successful now doesn’t mean they will always be successful; everyone will fall inevitably so for now they’re just focused on enjoying the present and the moments they’re surrounded with. They know that even though they’ve become so successful and have garnered worldwide love and attention, they’re gonna stay in Korea and continue to make music in Korea because that’s where they started and that’s what where they wanna end. That’s been their formula to success. And because they know how hard they worked to get to where they are now and how precious every single second is, they cherish it and they work even harder to maintain it and to keep these moments. A lot of feelings and emotions overcome me when I think about BTS because I know just how difficult and hard things were for them and how many people didn’t believe in them and made fun of them at their debut and didn’t think they were going to make it so seeing them so successful now makes me relieved and proud and happy but also in constant disbelief and surprise. They’re doing so great and amazing and I hope they continue to remain humble and modest and kind and in the midst of all their success and precious moments of life, they never forget their roots and where they came from. But I also have hope that they won’t take this time for granted because they’ve gone through so much so they’re gonna continue to remain grateful and appreciative of everything that’s happened to them.

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To BTS, I love you all seven very very much and along with the rest of Big Hit staff, Bang PD, and everyone else at Big Hit, I want to thank you for existing and singing and dancing and making music, but most of all, for believing in yourself. For not giving up even though you really wanted to and even though times were really difficult that you did want to give up. Thank you for always working so hard even when you barely have any energy or stamina to keep you going. Thank you for always trying your hardest in everything that you do. Thank you for being you. It’s been 4 years that I’ve been with y’all and I don’t regret anything that’s happened. I’m actually grateful that I gave y’all a chance by watching the ‘No More Dream’ MV because I have experienced so much happiness ever since.

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So BTS and ARMY’s, let’s continue to stay happy together for a very long time and to keep going. It’s only been 4 years, there are still so many more years ahead of us to live and experience. Let’s never betray each other and instead keep trusting and relying on each other for support and love like how we’ve been doing the past 4 years. Just like how I wish the friendships and relationship created in BTS lasts for an eternal life, I too hope this relationship between BTS and ARMY’s will never end. This journey hasn’t always been the easiest and it won’t be easy and it probably won’t get any easier and it probably won’t ever be easy, but I have faith that you BTS will be fine and will do great and if you keep doing what you’ve been doing the past 4 years, everything will be alright. So BTS, happy 4 years. Happy 4th anniversary. Let’s keep going. Let’s keep living. Let’s keep loving. And most of all, let’s keep flying together with the wings that were given to us.

[What Mary Thinks] Why I Couldn’t Finish Strong Woman Do Bong Soon

01

Korean drama ‘Strong Woman Do Bong-Soon’ just recently came to end and just like how it started, it also concluded strongly. However, I am in the minority in that I am one of those people who did not finish the drama and eventually dropped it for several reasons.

Prior to the airing of the drama, I did not watch any of the teasers or trailers to the drama because as much as these teasers and trailers are designed to increase one’s excitement and anticipation for the show, I find that sometimes they don’t do much for me so I just don’t watch them. Since Park Bo Young is my ultimate favorite actress, I was planning to watch the drama to support her (since her last drama ‘Oh My Ghostess’ was also a successful enjoyable hit). I ultimately came into the drama with a blank slate, not having watched any teasers and watching this drama for Park Bo Young (+ Ji Soo).

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Upon the first few episodes, I noticed the various different plots/story lines existent within the drama. And while some might argue that these plots kept the drama intense, intriguing, appealing, and that each have their own charms (in which I agree they do), the execution of these plots left me feeling distracted, frustrated, and annoyed. You had the plot of Bong-soon and the ways in which she deals with her powers, her relationship/love line with Minhyuk, the gangster/crew plot, the kidnapping case, Bong-soon’s parent’s relationship, and so much more. I wouldn’t have a problem with how many plots there were in Strong Woman Do Bong-Soon as I think dramas should have multiple plots to keep the drama going, but with SWDBS, I personally felt like some plots didn’t necessarily blend or flow well with each other causing me to become frustrated or confused as I continued to watched the drama.

As someone who’s watched many Korean dramas for the past decade, I understand that there’s a need for dramas to have multiple subplots and it should. It has to or else it’s going to get boring and drag on, but my problem with SWDBS was that there were too many subplots and although the drama tried to have them all interrelated and connected to one another somehow, they were just too different in contrast to each other. I could be enjoying and squealing over Bong Soon and Min Hyuk’s interactions with each other one second and then the next I’m watching the kidnapper torture and harm the girls he has trapped in the prison/cells and it was just too much for me. These plots were just too different from each other that they didn’t blend well even when the drama tried to.

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Honestly, I didn’t care too much about the gangster plot, but it’s unfortunate that the drama continued to carry on that plot throughout the drama. I would have enjoyed the drama a lot more had the drama not spend so much time on it, but instead give me more time on the development of our main couple or on the development of Bong Soon’s parents abusive relationship or something else (more time on this would have been wonderful to be honest). But the drama did not cease on the scenes with the gang and this lead me to enjoy the drama less and less. I felt like this plot didn’t necessarily serve any purpose in the drama. It was just kind of there for comedic times and moments which I always appreciate in a drama, but in SWDBS I felt like it was forced and wasn’t actually all that funny (maybe I just have a different sense of humor but it wasn’t that entertaining to me). The boss ends up becoming a monk and then the members go and visit him at the temple and that just became a mess to me. I simply did not care about the gang. As unfortunate and sad as it was that they all ended up in the hospital and stayed there the majority of the drama, to me they didn’t really do anything for the drama. If they weren’t going to contribute to the overall storyline or provide any comedic moments, then it probably didn’t need to exist in the first place but it did and I felt like the drama tried too hard to push them onto the audience and spent too much time focusing on them. But for what?

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The kidnapping plot was interesting and intriguing, but it continued to drag even to the very last episodes causing me to eventually lose my interest and patience with the drama. The kidnapping plot was interesting to the point where it could have been a drama of its own (something similar to ‘Signal’), but combined with the gang plot + Bong Soon/Minhyuk relationship, Bong Soon’s family relationships, it was just too much. Especially considering that the kidnapping plot was a lot more intense, dark, and evil compared to the other scenes like the gangster scenes that were “funny” or Bong Soon and Min Hyuk that were so sweet, cute, and lovey-dovey, the tone of the plot didn’t mesh well with the others, affecting the overall tone of the drama. There was too much going on at the same time and they differed too much from each other. I was expecting SWDBS to be breezy, light, fluffy, fun, and cute and the drama were all of those things and more, but it was also intense and dark with the kidnapping plot which caused a lot of confusion for me because I wasn’t so sure what the drama was supposed to be. One scene it’s light and fuzzy and cute and then the next it turns dark and scary and suspenseful and for me there was just too much going on at the same time so I couldn’t appreciate the drama for what it was and had a difficult time enjoying it, much less watching it.

I also think there was the concern of the way that the drama was portraying homosexuality/marginalized identities in the drama. I don’t know myself how I feel about it so I won’t comment much on this topic, but it’s one of those things where it’s a grey area and you’re not really sure what to think or how to feel about it. If there were others who dropped this drama, I wouldn’t be surprised if it was for this reason though (among a variety of other reasons). I think I was able to look past this after reading how others positively interpreted these scenes, but with all the other things going on in the drama, there was more than enough reasons for me to drop the drama than for me to keep watching it.

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Unfortunately, SWDBS did not live up to my expectations. I watched it hoping that it would improve and get better but it stayed the same throughout. This was good because it was consistent throughout, but it did drag for me a little bit too much (I lost so much hair from the kidnapping plot because for some reason they could not capture the damn kidnapper even though they visited the warehouse 50,000 times) and just wasn’t as appealing and interesting as I thought it would be. Since this was Park Bo Young’s second drama and ‘Oh My Ghostess’ was an enjoyable and exceptional drama, I think I came in also maybe expecting a little bit too much (which is my fault). I do think the premise was interesting and I liked how Bong Soon was strong so she wasn’t your typical candy girl who always needed someone to save her, but everything else in the drama didn’t impress me. However, the drama was great for many others, both domestically and internationally, which is always great news. The ratings for the drama were fairly high and successful especially for a cable channel and the drama was always strong and consistent which I always appreciate in a drama. So while I necessarily didn’t enjoy the drama, many many others did and the drama was in the end successful. It ended just as strongly as it started and I’m glad that the drama was enjoyable to many people. This drama was just not for me and I might be in the minority, but I’m probably gonna feel this way about this drama for a long time and I honestly don’t have the motivation to go back and watch it despite the ratings and positive comments that people have made about it. This drama is some people’s cup of tea and isn’t for others and unfortunately it wasn’t my cup of tea, but I’m glad that it was a successful hit nonetheless.

[What Mary Thinks] My BTS concert experience/fan account!

Hello everyone! It’s been a while since I’ve last posted and in addition to starting the third and final quarter of this school year, I also went to the most recent BTS concert in Anaheim, LA and there are so many things that I would like to talk about and share with y’all so here’s a post/fanaccount of my concert experience along with videos/fancams and photos that I took at the concert!

*It’s been more than a week since the concert so I have mostly processed everything from the concert and ya post-concert depression is real y’all

*Note: I couldn’t record the entire performance for every performance because I didn’t have enough space on my phone in order to do so, but I tried my very best to record most of the performances at least for 30 seconds to a minute.

*I recorded the fancams not only for me but also for ARMY’s around the world who unfortunately do not have the privilege of seeing BTS in concert like I did. I was thinking about y’all fans too! don’t worry! I got you 🙂

Trip

So long story short, just to provide some details on my trip, I went to the 2nd day of the Anaheim concert (there were 2 Anaheim concerts but I went to the one on the 2nd day). I arrived at the venue at around 4:30pm just to check out the place, to buy myself a lightstick, and then to hang around and line up early. My family and I had seated tickets so there wasn’t a need for us to go early, but we just wanted to check out the place, get some free stuff, and meet ARMY’s.

At around 5:30PM, Honda center staff and security guards asked everyone to start lining up so that we could enter the venue. The only problem was that there were no lines and no one knew where the lines were supposed to start or which sections were which lines and overall it was just a mess. One security guard was telling us one thing and then another one was telling us something else and it seemed like no one knew what they were doing simply because I don’t think they did. As someone who’s coordinated their own 3-day 2 night youth conference held on a university campus or as someone who does a lot of behind-the-scenes/logistical kind of planning, the way that Honda Center handled the organization of the concert was poor and disorganized. Signs indicating where and which sections people should line up at should have been posted because everyone was confused. In the end, my sister, cousins, and I ended up getting in a line and waited for over 2 hours in line and still did not get inside the venue although we waited for over 2 hours. I was getting annoyed and frustrated, because other lines were entering the venue faster but the line we were in took a really long time for some reason. 20 minutes until the show was to start and we were still outside in line waiting to enter the venue which made me so angry because I wanted to be inside the venue at least a few minutes early to just sit down, catch my breath, relax, and enjoy myself before the concert was to start. Luckily, my fam and I ended up going to another line where it only took us 3 minutes to get inside the venue *rolls eyes*. So I ended up getting into my seat 10 minutes before the show started and then relaxed for a little bit/prepared myself for the concert to start. That was my check-in experience with the Honda Center. So yeah, it definitely wasn’t the best.

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BUT seeing BTS did make me feel a lot better and made everything alright in the end (forgot how inefficient and bad check-in was once I saw the beautiful bbys lol). I just couldn’t believe that I was finally seeing them with my own eyes and I definitely was in disbelief the entire concert (and even now I’m still in disbelief and I think I’ll always be in disbelief to be honest). Once ‘Not Today’ played and the boys came out, I froze and although I was crying internally the entire time and will be for the rest of my life, I just could not believe that these 7 boys – boys I supported since their debut who I admire, love, care for, and support – were right in front of me. It was just too good to be true and it didn’t hit me that I was seeing them until I actually saw them. They were such a beautiful sight. I couldn’t cry physically because I was just too astounded and shocked (i remember just how jungshook i was when they showed up on stage with ‘not today.’ I WAS SHOOK. LIKE JUNGSHOOK MAX). I didn’t scream or yell as much because I didn’t want to lose my voice, but more so I was just in awe. In awe of how talented, how hard-working, how beautiful these boys were and how they were right in front of me and I was breathing the same air as them and was in the same venue as them.

The boys were very tired (obviously) so I think that kind of impacted their performances. I’ve definitely watched fancams of their performances before and whatnot and I know that they have performed with a lot more energy and power before so seeing them so tired but still giving their performances their best made me so proud. And I don’t blame them either for being so tired that they weren’t able to perform as good as they could have. I mean doing a world tour and doing 2 back-to-back shows as well as interviews and other activities in between must be so tiring for them, but they gave it their all and were still great performers in the end.

Members:

Now onto the members, my memory’s failing on me so I’ll just try to write down everything that I remember so please bare with me, haha.

Jin: Jin (along with Hobi) were probably the most popular ones at the concert. While we cheered for all the members, Jin probably was the one with the most cheers and stans in the audience. I just remember whenever his face popped up during the VCR or during his ‘Awake’ solo performance, there were just waves of screaming everywhere and it was just so great especially considering how the Hyung line doesn’t have as many fans as the Maknae line so seeing him receive so much love and support from the audience at the concert made my heart warm and made me happy. There’s this misconception that Jin isn’t a good vocalist, but I think it’s more just that his vocals doesn’t match BTS’s upbeat hip-hop songs, but if you gave him a ballad like ‘Awake’, his voice really shines and I definitely saw that with the ‘Awake’ solo stage. Unlike what people think, Jin’s a good singer. He might not be the most stable or the best singer in BTS, but he definitely has vocals but just didn’t have the opportunity to showcase them in BTS’s songs. So I’m glad that he can prove to people that not only is he very good-looking and handsome, but that he can also sing. He was definitely very cute. During his thank you speech, he showed everyone his “heart” (it was a paper heart taped onto his shirt) and thanked everyone (it was so embarrassing lol). And then at the end of the concert, he and V were flirting were being silly and V poured some water over Jin which caused Jin to run away like a monkey. Jin is such a sweetheart and he’s the cutest. I’m glad he’s the oldest member of the group and takes good care of the other members. Just like my cousin said, “seeing Jin makes you believe that the world will be okay” and that was how I definitely felt after seeing Jin in person.

Suga: i H8 Yoongi. I H8 HIM. ekanf;ndfndkfnd. So before the concert, Suga was my least favorite member in the group (i dont’ have anything against him or anything; i just love the other members a little bit more) but this concert might just have changed everything. Throughout the concert, he kept on coming over to the side I was sitting on and I swear, we had eye contact like 3 times (this might just be me being delusional but still, ya get me). And omg but he kept on staring over at my direction and it made my heart flutter. Like Yoongi, no. Stay in your lane. I didn’t ask for this. I’m loyal to Jimin and only Jimin, but I swear, sometimes the other members be doing stuff and making me feel some type of way and Yoongi at the concert was making me feel some kind of way. Performance wise, Suga was also really tired, but you could definitely tell that he was also really into the performances. ‘First Love’ was so beautiful. It was so damn emotional and I loved every single second of it. He was so passionate, softly rapping into the microphone at first and then basically growling/shouting towards the end of the performance as the music escalated and I had never heard anything more beautiful in my life. He has so much damn passion and he clearly demonstrated that at the concert and it made me love him so much more. He was not playing around at the concert and really gave it his all. There were times where I saw him getting down to the music while on stage and I was just like “GET IT YOONGI GET ITTTTTTTT” because he was really into it (but these moments were rare). Like we all know he’s a grandpa and saves his energy for other things instead but there were times he was really getting down to the music which made me really excited because we don’t see that often ya know? Now I love Yoongi so much more after the concert and I can never listen to ‘First Love’ the same way anymore nor can I look at Yoongi the same way anymore. He ruined my life least to say

Rap Monster: I think if any member’s worked the hardest, I would say that it’d be Rap Monster. ALL the members work very hard, but I just can’t imagine how much work and pressure it must have been for Rap Monster to constantly talk in all the interviews they did in the U.S., translate for the other members, and practice on top of the performances. As the leader and as the main representative for the interviews, there was a lot of pressure but despite it all, Namjoon still did a wonderful job talking about BTS, K-Pop, world tour experiences, and so much more while speaking in a language that he taught himself and doing interviews with news channels, youtube channels, and so many more people for the first time. That’s a lot of work and that takes a damn lot of courage, but he did so well and I’m so proud of him. At the concert, I could tell that he was also really tired, but of course he was trying his best and performing to the best of his abilities. He surprisingly wasn’t the only member speaking English. All the members spoke to us in english so Namjoon didn’t really have to translate anything that the members were saying. But anyways, Namjoon is a really attractive and charming guy and I think over the years I’ve come to appreciate him, his humility, his leadership, and his personality. He’s so smart and respectful. During his ‘Reflection’ solo stage, we all chanted ‘We love you!’ towards the end of the song so that was really cool and touching. I don’t really remember too much about Namjoon at the concert, but overall, he’s a really kind and down-to-earth guy and I’m glad he’s the leader.

V: All the members were super tired, but V was probably the most tired. We all know that V is a pabo and he’s hella 4D who is always in his own world and can be very energetic and out-going and crazy, but we didn’t really get to see much of that at the concert which made me sad. I actually think he was pretty chill/less energetic than he usually is and I think that could have been because he was just really tired. I remember how he wore the official Wings tour cap and he had his face covered so you couldn’t really see his face and I think he was down most of the time at the concert unfortunately. Don’t misunderstand though, he performed wonderfully and he was great. Vocals on point. Didn’t make a mistake and was able to showcase his beautiful vocals with his ‘Stigma’ solo stage. I think it’s because I know how crazy Taehyung can get so I automatically assume that along with Hobi that Taehyung would also be just as energetic and out there during the concert so when he wasn’t like that I knew that it was because he was super tired which broke my heart </3. Maybe this was partly my fault because I didn’t look at him as much as I did with the other members so maybe I caught him during times where he was down/still but that’s just what I remember about Taehyung at the concert and maybe there were other times where he was energetic and happy and I wasn’t there to witness that. Apparently, he also cried during ‘1!2!3!’, but I didn’t catch that. Taehyung’s really cute though and I also really appreciate him. I’m more than positive that his grandma is proud of him 🙂

Hobi: The only thing I can say about Hobi is that he is an angel. An actual angel. Like we comment all the time that our idols are angels and whatnot, but NO, NO – HOBI IS AN ANGEL. HE’S LITERALLY AN ANGEL. AN ACTUAL ANGEL. He’s THE angel. You think you’ve seen angels and know about angels? Nah, you haven’t seen anything yet. Hobi is the epitome of angels and Heaven and all the good in the world. He’s the sweetest. I can’t even describe what he’s like because there are no words. Hobi always – ALWAYS – had a smile on his face even though like the rest of the members he was really tired. And I think seeing him in person makes you understand why he’s called J-Hope and is the moodmaker of the group. He was always smiling and he has hellaaaaaaa energy. He performed so effortlessly you wouldn’t even have thought that he was doing a world tour with the rest of BTS because he made it seem like he wasn’t. He had so much stamina, power, and energy in all his performances he was so great. I read another fanaccount where the author talked about how Hobi was born to be a performer and how no matter what you were doing or where your eyes were looking, your eyes were somehow always following Hobi because he’s that great of a performer and now I know and understand what the author was talking about. Hobi is a BORN PERFORMER. He performs so effortlessly and has so much damn energy I love it. The ‘Wings’ album and ‘YNWA’ album has been Hobi’s time/moments and he really shines in those 2 albums in particular and just seeing him perform made me so happy. During his ‘Mama’ solo stage, he looked SO FINE. SOOOOOO FINE. He wore a white bomber jacket and a hat and omfg I swear I died. I swear for the 30 seconds he was performing in that outfit, my soul left my body and went straight to Hobi. For those 30 seconds I temporarily left Jimin for Hobi and then came back to reality and woke up again and went back to Jimin. Hobi just looked especially good that night and he was so happy. He was also one of the more popular members that night so it makes me happy to know that he has many stans because I feel like Hobi is underestimated and hidden among the other members (PLEASE DON’T SLEEP ON HIM Y’ALL). He had a lot of fans that night so it was great seeing that. He also had plushies thrown at him from the fans which scared him lol. His reaction was great. Overall, I really appreciate Hobi b/c even when it seemed like the other members were tired, he never seemed that way and he was always so energetic so in a way he made up for the exhaustion that the other members were showing. He was always up on his feet, quick to move, and made everything seem okay and made everything seem better. He didn’t seem tired at all even though I’m pretty sure he was just like the other members. With that much energy on stage, your eyes are kind of just glued to him and you can’t really control or help it. He is a born performer and he truly does live up to his stage name: J-Hope.

Jungkook: When you watch Jungkook up on stage, performing passionately, singing with his heavenly voice, being a cutie, and just having fun, you in a way feel like a proud mother (or at least for me I did). Jungkook is my second bias in BTS ever since their debut and I’ve always had and will always have a soft spot for him. As the youngest in the group, there’s a lot of pressure he goes through and he really looks up to his Hyungs (watching him perform ‘Begin’ was so emotional for me b/c like omg our little maknae is growing up so quickly). Watching him grow and mature from debut up until now, our little maknae has grown up to be a very naughty, silly, hella extra, funny, and ridiculous guy but is also super talented and great and humble and innocent and I think that’s why everyone (regardless of whether you jungkook biased or not) have a soft spot for him. You just wanna care for him and look over him and make sure he’s okay because he’s so damn precious and that was how I felt seeing Jungkook at the concert. I comment about how he was a fetus when he debuted and now he’s a small grown baby and it makes me so sad b/c he’s growing up so quickly but i’m also happy to be seeing him having graduated from high school and doing these really great big things. Justin Seagull was amazing at the concert, dancing was on-point, and even though you could sense that he was tired af just like the other members, he still enjoyed the concert and had a great time. I also really appreciate his willingness to learn English so he could communicate with us fans. I think that just really demonstrates not only how passionate he is but also just how serious and grateful he is toward ARMY’s. Jungkook is the epitome of precious y’all

Jimin: As y’all know, Jimin is my bias in BTS ever since debut and he will always be my bias and omg he’s so damn dramatic he needs to stop. Whether it’d be in performances, interactions with fans, or just talking, everything he did was dramatic it was so frustrating (in a good way) and i just wanted him to stop because he looked so damn good and amazing. At the concert, I could tell Jimin was a bit hesitant with the first couple of performances. Especially after all the death threats, it seemed like he was anxious/nervous so he was just kind of performing like usual and nothing special happened. But towards the middle and to the end of the concert, he eventually warmed up and opened up to the audience and he started performing better and looked a lot happier which made me happy because I was also really worried about how he was feeling after everything that had happened. So seeing him so happy and smiling and dancing around on stage and interacting with fans and being dramatic as hell made me feel so much better and it made me so happy to see him happy. He doesn’t know how to wear a damn shirt I can tell you that. I was really sad that throughout the concert he kept on walking to the other side and not to my side where I was sitting so I’m kind of bummed out about that, but I did happen to take pictures of him on my side and him supposedly looking at my direction (but it’s funny because I don’t remember taking that picture). Of course, since he’s my bias I took a lot of pictures of him that night at every chance I could get. He’s such a powerful dancer. His moves are so smooth but they’re also so powerful it hits you and you just don’t even expect it and you get hurt. During their ‘Save Me’ performance, he drank from a water bottle and then gave it to one of the fans in the P1 pit and omg I was so jealous. If I was that fan that got the water bottle, I would cherish it forever because it’s Jiminnnn. But yes, Jimin is a life saver. I love him so much it hurts

Positives/Deltas:

The concert overall was great. I think some things that I wished could have been done differently was the back-to-back performances.  I understand that this is a concert and the concert can only go on for so long and all these other aspects, but I wished that I could have gotten more time to enjoy + process the performances before the next performance could begin. When one performance was over, the next one started immediately after (there were small videos playing in between every once in a while) and I felt sad that I couldn’t really enjoy the performances knowing that the next performance was going to start immediately after. I think that affected the way I processed and remembered the performances (but it’s a good thing I recorded most of them).

Of course in terms of logistics and organization, check-in should be a lot better and smoother next time. Also, the lighting for the performances were really wild and crazy. At times I felt like they took away from the performances instead of adding to it and it made me frustrated, sad, and disappointed because you couldn’t really see the members on stage performing because the lights were shining everywhere so quickly. So better stage lights would be cool too.

Favorite Performances:

In terms of favorite performances, ‘Run’ had to be my absolute, most favorite performance of the night which might be weird because they didn’t perform the choreography for it and it was rather short. But it was just something about that performance that really stuck to me. Just seeing them walk around the stage singing the song and then that small Jikook moment and then afterwards watching them run while the gold/yellow streamers popped out onto the stage was all just a beautiful and touching sight for me that the performance was my favorite. I loved it so much and I still have really fond memories of it and it’ll probably be my favorite performance to be honest. Everything about it was absolutely perfect. ‘First Love’ by Suga would probably be another favorite performance of mines which is ironic because that song in terms of the ‘Wings’ album is probably one of my least favorites and I’m not the biggest fan of Yoongi, but after the concert, everything just totally changed. Even now when I listen to the song, I can’t listen to it without thinking about the concert and how damn passionate and intense the performance was. Yoongi was just killing it. He was so damn great.

I also really liked ‘Cypher Pt. 4’, but that’s just me being biased because that song is probably one of my favorites from the ‘Wings’ album. AND OMG I HAVE A THING FOR BTS THROWING WATER AT THEIR FANS AND DURING CYPHER PT 4 THEY DID THAT AND IT WAS AMAZING AND I CAUGHT IT ON CAMERA TOO I’M SO HAPPY. The same goes with ‘MAMA’ by Hobi because if you already couldn’t tell from my post about him earlier, he’s one hell of a great performer and his performance was amazinggg.

Funny thing, I actually forgot their song “N.O” existed so when they performed that song, I legit had to seriously think which song they were singing because I just could not remember. Haha. I had a brief brain fart there.

Last Comments & Thoughts

It’s been 2 weeks since the concert (have been meaning to post this fanaccount but school and work’s been keeping me hella busy) and post-concert depression is real y’all. IT IS REAL. I went back to watch the fancams and photos I had and I was so sad. Everyday I miss BTS and I just long for the day I can see them again. Or I yearn to go back and experience the concert just one more time.

If you’ve been following my BTS posts here on my blog, y’all know that last year was a rough and difficult year for me and I wasn’t in the best place but BTS helped me a lot and made feel a lot happier which is why it meant so much for me to be able to see them in person. They’ve changed my life for the better and it was such an honor to be in the same place as them and to basically be with them and be around their presence.

I also think that seeing them live in concert has increased my level of appreciation for them. Not that I wasn’t grateful for them before or that I didn’t love them before the concert or anything, but just being there with them made me realize that these boys work so damn hard and have worked endlessly to be where they are right now. I remember during one of the talks during the concert, Namjoon was talking about how BTS used to perform in a crowd of 2,000 people and a few years later here they are performing at sold-out shows throughout the world in front of 16,000+ people. It really is amazing how far they’ve come. They literally started from the bottom and now they’re here at the top (new appreciation post for bts along the way? maybe?).

The next day after the concert, I was flying back to school (since I started school the day following the concert) and that’s when it hit me that I was going to return back home and continue my daily routine of going to college, study, work, eat, sleep, and so on. The concert was such a nice break from everything and I was deeply saddened that I was returning to this daily routine. The BTS concert was an amazing way to end my spring break and I wouldn’t have wanted it to end any other way. I remember just waiting on the plane for the plane to fly and listening to BTS’s ‘Supplementary Story: You Never Walk Alone” and feeling so damn emotional and sad that I was legit going to cry. I was just so sad that the concert had ended, that I was leaving the city that I saw them in, and that I was going back to reality. I wanted to go back and experience the concert all over again because I just felt like it wasn’t enough; I wanted to go back and re-do everything a second time again. I feel like in a way it’s a bittersweet experience: sweet because I finally got the rare opportunity to see them and be with them for the 3 hours that I was with them but bitter because I’m uncertain if I’ll ever get the chance to see them again. I’m definitely grateful that I was able to attend this concert though and I know for sure that I would love to attend another BTS concert if the chance arrives in the future. Until then, I will cherish the many photos and videos I have of them at the concert and support them from where I am while I patiently wait.

All videos and fancams belong to me! Please do not re-upload.

**you can watch the rest of the fancams on my youtube channel!

[What Mary Thinks] HIGHLIGHT is baaaaaaaack and you know what that means!

Hello beautiful people! Today is a great day (and this year in general) as Highlight (formerly known as BEAST/B2ST) finally returned with their long-awaited and anticipated comeback “Plz Don’t Be Sad”!!

For those of y’all who don’t know, Highlight (it honestly feels weird to call them this now when I’ve been calling them BEAST their entire music career) is my ultimate bias group in the K-Pop industry. I have a lot of mixed emotions about how I feel regarding Highlight’s new start, group changes, journey, and their music career, but I’m just glad that they are back with new music and a new image and doing what they love – music.

Being the nostalgic person that I am, watching Highlight’s new music video made me think about a lot of things (and I mean A LOT). One, I absolutely enjoy their new MV and album. I knew I was going to support Highlight no matter what with this new comeback, but I wasn’t too sure if I was going to like their new songs and title song. However, upon watching the MV teaser for ‘Plz Don’t Be too Sad’, I fell in love with the song. It was only a 30 second MV teaser, but I loved it so much and could not stop watching and listening to it. The next few days of waiting for the album to come out was probably one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do because I just couldn’t wait to listen to the full song and the entire album and watch these amazing boys in the MV so once the MV and song came out, I immediately watched it on Youtube. And just like I had anticipated, Highlight did not disappoint (they’re not my biases for no reason). ‘Plz Don’t Be Sad’ is such a fun, cheerful, and crazy song emitting so many positive vibes and it just makes you want to dance to it. It’s such a good song (*squealsssss*).

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I would be lying if I said that I wasn’t sad about what happened to Highlight that lead them to where they are now. Although a part of me is very happy and proud of these boys for doing the impossible, for advocating for themselves, for fighting for what they love and want to do, another part of me cries inside. Because I grew up listening to BEAST and was with them pretty much ever since their debut, I thought they would last forever and stay as OT6 forever. I never thought in a million years that they would ever part ways or go through any member changes. When I heard that Hyunseung was leaving the group, a part of me was definitely very sad and heart-broken. I had imagined that if BEAST was to ever part ways with CUBE that they would all go together, but unfortunately that wasn’t the case and Hyunseung decided to go his own way and stay with CUBE. Some people blamed Hyunseung and endlessly criticized him and called him harsh things like ‘selfish’ and whatnot, but I don’t hold any hate for Hyunseung. Just like I did with the other members, I watched over him when he was in BEAST and I had so much love for him and the other members that I couldn’t hate him when he decided to stay with CUBE. I respect his decision and I will support him like how I am with Highlight. Although it’s unfortunate that BEAST has parted ways and they’ve gone their own ways, maybe it happened for a reason and there’s nothing we can do about it. I fully support both Highlight and Hyunseung as they continue on with their own respective careers and do what they want to do and are passionate about and I am here 100% to support them both – as a B2UTY.

Highlight’s relationship with CUBE isn’t an unknown issue in the K-Pop industry. It was obvious that even though they were CUBE’s breadwinner (and had been since their debut which was able to help CUBE launch the debuts of many other groups and artists since then), they weren’t being treated the best and were often neglected, abandoned, and left doing their jobs by themselves. I remember reading posts and comments about how B2UTIES would have often do the job of promoting and publicizing BEAST’s comeback promotions by themselves because CUBE was incapable and incompetent of doing it themselves and left BEAST on the backburner. The past few years has been so painful, complicated, and difficult for Highlight and B2UTIES. We can all agree on that. It was so painful only getting one comeback from BEAST every year and then seeing them get shipped off to Japan and other countries for tours so that revenue and money could come in for CUBE and then the cycle would start over again. It was such an unhealthy and exhausting and frustrating cycle, but it was a cycle that happened over and over again. And then BEAST finally had enough of it and that’s when they decided to change things and stand up for themselves.

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Which is why I’m so proud of my boys for doing the unthinkable and ultimately being so brave and courageous and daring to part ways with the one agency that gave them that second chance that other agencies refused to give them. In a way it’s kind of ironic. CUBE, the entertainment company that recruited all of BEAST members (who were often known to be rejects from other entertainment companies) and gave them a second chance and helped them become the big name that they are right now ended up becoming their worst enemy and in the middle of all the changes and chaos didn’t know how to support their breadwinner anymore and had to part ways with BEAST. It’s so weird and odd how things work out and also really heart-breaking. Somewhere along the way, CUBE’s relationship with BEAST became so sour and unhealthy and bad and something had to be done about it and that’s when BEAST ultimately made the decision to leave. I can’t even imagine how hard and difficult and exhausting it must have been for the members. How do you leave the one place that you basically grew up in? How do you leave the one place that was your home? Is it an act of betrayal if you leave the one place that gave you a second chance that lead to your success as an artist when other companies weren’t willing to invest in you the same way? I’m pretty sure it wasn’t an easy decision for the members, but because of the awful treatment they were receiving from CUBE, they decided to leave.

I’m just imagining how Highlight felt as they were going through this whole process of splitting ways with CUBE and creating their own entertainment agency and how uncertain and unsure they must have been. How many doubts they had while going through this.. doubts of whether it would work out, doubts about whether they will be successful or not on their own, doubts of whether they had any fans or not, doubts of whether fans were waiting for them or not, doubts of whether they were doing the right thing or not, and so much more. But here they are. They have returned to us and they look so happy. They look so happy. Although I’m pretty sure they are still doubtful and concerned about many things and may have a hard time sleeping at night, another part of myself also feels like they sleep at night with some content and peace in their heart. That they no longer feel suffocated and stuck in the place they once found liberation and happiness in. They’re in a much better place now and I could see that through the MV and album that they recently released.

Through Highlight’s comeback, you can really tell just how strong and close the members are to each other. After years of neglect, isolation, and suffering together, they stayed together through all the obstacles and troubles. I saw on Tumblr just today a post of Ki Kwang and Dongwoon having an honest and heart-to-heart conversation with each other about Highlight and their decisions to part from CUBE and it was so touching seeing this. They trust each other so damn much and relied on each other when they had no one or nothing to rely on during the difficult time of transitioning into Highlight. You can tell that they care about each other so much and that they admire, support, and love one another so much. If that isn’t love, then I don’t know what is.

I’m extremely proud of my boys for making a comeback and for being brave and strong. For holding on even though the past few years have been so cruel, harsh, demanding, and painful to them. For continuing to trust in themselves, one another, and B2UTIES that things will get better and that times will be more positive. For being role models and setting themselves as an example to their Hoobaes of all the possibilities they can do as well as if they endure similar experiences and struggles as Highlight did. Just like Shinhwa, Highlight is setting a precedent for future K-Pop groups and in a way is sending a message to all the K-Pop groups out there that they don’t have to put up with their company’s bullshit and as difficult as it might be can advocate for themselves and do what they want too. With that being said, Highlight is back everyone and they are going to slay. Y’all better get ready. Y’all better prepare yourselves.

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And while I know group and member changes are inevitable and it happens, I think another part of me will always be sad over what’s happened to my favorite K-Pop group of all times and all the possible things that could have happened had none of this ever started or if Hyunseung had just stayed with Highlight. But until then, I will leave the endless possibilities linger in the back of my mind, in my imagination, in my heart, and in my memories and move forward by showing my endless support and love for OT6.

 

What Mary Thinks: Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo

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Ahhhh, it’s such a bittersweet feeling. It’s such a bittersweet feeling when a drama that you watched (and enjoyed) from the very beginning ends and you’re just sitting there, pondering over what else there is to life.

Although I did not recap Korean drama “Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo”, I had been watching it this whole time every week and found myself heavily enjoying the light, simple, and breezy coming-of-age drama.

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Just like many other viewers have commented, the drama does a really great job in realistically portraying the great, bright moments of the young youthful culture as well as those not-so-great moments, all within a time span of 16 hours. Being a college student myself, there’s a sense of connection and belonging to this drama compared to other dramas. There weren’t any unnecessary angst, the pacing was for the most part done well, and the cheerful, light-hearted, and bubbly tone that the drama started off went full circle as it was able to maintain this mood and tone throughout the drama which I really appreciated. There weren’t any Truck of Dooms, there weren’t any cheating, affairs, etc. The drama was simply about our Kim Bok Joo and Jung Joon Hyung experiencing life, love, and friendships as young college students learning to grow up in a world full of up’s and down’s.

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I mentioned about how the drama was well paced and I appreciate this because I never felt like there was any scrambling or that any issues weren’t addressed or if they were, weren’t addressed too quickly. There wasn’t the need to rush anything and even when there were time jumps or there were still issues left untouched, the drama still covered them in the end and gave us answers. We could see this with Joonhyung’s trauma or his relationship with his mother (which I admit I was surprised that they addressed because I wasn’t expecting it) or Bok Joo’s relationship with her father. If there’s anything that I wished the drama could have done differently, I realized that all the romantic relationships in the drama started after Kim Bok Joo and Joon Hyung started dating which I think was fine because all the couples are cute and sweet and makes me squeal like crazy, but I wished that they would have had all their own timing and moments as well. It was as if only once Bok Joo and Joon Hyung started dating that the other characters could start dating as well and so then within a span of 2 episodes, you had the birth of like 3 different couples and I felt like it just came out of no where. Other than this small complaint, the drama did a good job with pacing and portraying all the characters, issues, and relationships in a realistic manner.

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Speaking of relationships, I also really appreciated all the relationships in this drama – romantic or not. They were all healthy in one way or another (communicated with one another, were honest with each other about their thoughts and feelings, etc.) and actually opened up about how they were feeling and carried mature, civil discussions about their thoughts and feelings. Sadly it’s uncommon to witness this now in K-dramaland nowadays where couples are often passive aggressive with each other or resort to noble idiocracy and then viewers suffer through 2 more episodes before the couples finally make up. With ‘Weightlifting Fairy’ it wasn’t like that and it was so refreshing to be able to watch a drama and effortlessly enjoy it for the way the characters were and how true they stayed to themselves, their partners, and their friends (for the most part). Although I do wish that the characters would have learned from their mistakes of lying or shielding information from one another (they still did this up to the very last episode and it lowkey irked me), I liked how all the characters were respectful and honest in that they were aware of what their priorities were. Bok Joo and Joon Hyung spent a healthy amount of time with each other as couples would, but they still spent time with their family and their friends – never forgetting about who they were as individuals and getting lost along the way. It was great to see that even at the very last episode, they all got their own happy ending (which they absolutely deserved) and still maintained their relationships and friendships.

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In regards to the cast, I’ve always been a fan of Lee Sung Kyung. I don’t quite remember when I first discovered her, but I had always been supportive of her. I would be lying if I said that she didn’t carry this project because she did – just as all the other actors and actresses in the drama did as well. Although I want to say that this drama was centered around Bok Joo because in a way it was, every character in the drama was important and connected in some way and played an important role so the drama did a good job of also focusing on all the characters and spending some time meshing them out as well. I thank the drama for conveying the message that not all female-identified individuals are going to look like the conventional idea of pretty that society has placed and emphasized upon for years, are not always going to be wearing dresses and skirts, or have make-up on. There are girls out there like Kim Bok Joo who will be herself and be her own kind of pretty and feel empowered however she wants. ‘Weightlifting Fairy’ was different in many ways and this message was just one of the many ways that it differed so greatly from other dramas and that I wished other dramas would follow and do in the future. As for Nam Joo Hyuk, I’ve seen him in other dramas and I felt like he was pretty green and dry in the roles he played before. But I saw a huge improvement in ‘Weightlifting Fairy’ and I know he will only do better from this point forward. He did a wonderful job portraying Joon Hyung, showing even the tiniest face expressions and reactions to every situation so I always knew what he was thinking or how he was feeling (don’t even get me started on his character – sooooo swoonworthy. When will I ever find my own Joon Hyung? *cries*).

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I didn’t realize how much I enjoyed this drama until I was watching the last 2 minutes of episode 16 and wanting to cry upon realizing that it’s come to an end. Just like many other people, I also didn’t want to accept that it ended and I still don’t want to. I’m not quite ready to let go of this drama yet and while it might be unlikely, I do hope there will be a second season. I would love to see more of how the relationships and friendships evolved, what our characters do after graduation, how Joon Hyung and Bok Joo are doing after graduating, and much much more. Maybe this is just because I’m not quite ready yet to let go of all the wonderful characters in ‘Weightlifting Fairy’ that I’m requesting for a second season, but to be quite honest, I’m not sure I will ever accept that this drama has come to an end. I hadn’t realized how much I enjoyed it until it ended and now I’m all over the place and I’m not quite so sure what to do (I definitely took it for granted *cries*). While it was unfortunate that this drama had to air at the same time and day as ‘Legend of the Blue Sea’, I’m happy that it remained the same throughout the whole 16 episodes. Everything about this drama was perfect – from the cast, to the characters, to the OST’s, to the cinematography, and even all the cameos that were funny, fun to watch, and logical. I don’t go re-watch dramas often, but maybe one day when I’m in need of a drama to watch or when I’m going through rough times in college, I’ll go back to re-watch ‘Weightlifting Fairy’ to remind myself that while there will be difficult and tiring days in college, there is also hope and love and warmth, just as our characters in ‘Weightlifting Fairy’ possessed, shared with one another, and received in return.

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Appreciation Post: Reflection on K-Pop 2016 (+ BTS)

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As the new year progresses, I’ve spent a lot of time reflecting back on 2016 and my journey throughout last year. Personally, it’s been a difficult and gruesome but nonetheless meaningful and interesting year and I’m excited to see what 2017 is going to be like.

My relationship with K-Pop has been one with ups and downs, right and left. It’s been rocky the past couple of years lately with so many things happening in my life that I just didn’t have as much time and passion for K-Pop and Korean dramas anymore which is why I wasn’t updating this blog as much as I would have liked. I see myself listening to Korean music and watching Korean dramas for quite a long time and I’m not sure if it’s just going to be another phase in my life, but the Korean entertainment industry has provided me with happiness, joy, and laughter throughout my life and it especially helped me during times when I didn’t have anything or anyone else around me which is why I have a lot of love for K-Pop and Korean dramas. This is also why I don’t see K-Pop and Korean dramas just being another phase in my life (or at least for right now). It’s been there for me for a decade now and I hope that it’ll continue to do so for the next decade. Within the past few years, there’s been a handful of groups that have debuted and a handful of Korean dramas, but only a few that have stood out to me and that I have dedicated myself to loyally. As some of y’all know, BTS and BEAST are two of my favorite groups and will always hold a special place in my heart. This appreciation post will be more for BTS than anything else, but I am grateful to many groups, moments, dramas that has contributed to my happiness and joy however small or little or however recent or old.

This post can be kind of personal too, but hey, what’s an appreciation post without being personal right? 2016 for me was a really rough year I’m not gonna lie. There were a few things that happened simultaneously that placed me in a bad position and made things really hard for me. I was struggling. I could barely take care of myself. I just wasn’t myself. It was difficult to rise up and come back and take care of myself again.

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But then, along the way, a miracle happened. And that miracle was BTS. I’ve been an ARMY since BTS’s debut on June 13, 2013 and I’ve been following them ever since up until now, but I wasn’t always up to date with them and caught up with everything they were doing. I was so busy that I didn’t always have the time to check up on them to see what they were up to. So with that, although I still loved BTS, my level of love for them wasn’t as strong as it used to be. But then with the incidents that happened in 2016, I went back to BTS. And luckily, they returned with ‘Blood, Sweat, and Tears’ at a time when I needed them the most. Not only did they come back with a great, mysterious, touching, and emotional album, they came back much more powerful and with much more for us fans. Listening to their songs gave me a lot of strength, watching their Bangtan Bombs and interviews made me laugh and made me happy. Slowly but gradually, I came back to loving myself again and I was starting to forget any hurt or anguish I was feeling. I was slowly becoming happy again all thanks to BTS. They made me forget about my worries, about my pain, about the self-love I wasn’t giving myself. And instead slowly started to make me do the opposite. They made me happy, they motivated me to also work hard, they made me want to become better, to love myself again.

Then came the end of the year award shows and BTS ended up winning daesangs and I was so happy. So proud. I’m not that good with words so what I type on here won’t ever fully express how I feel towards BTS, but these boys – I am so grateful for them. They work so damn hard without any care to receive anything in return. They are all and individually angels in their own ways. They deserve the world, they deserve so much. Whether it’s through their music, their concerts, their interviews, everything, they always put forth their best work and effort – all for us ARMY’s. As some fans have jokingly mentioned, we are so spoiled. These boys work so hard comeback after comeback, project after project, and still have time to update us and communicate with us via platforms like their social media accounts or through the V App. They love us so much and never forget to thank us or mention us in their award speeches or interviews.

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BTS might not know this, but I have a lot of love and respect for them. To be so busy, to dedicate all your time, blood, sweat, and tears into everything you do while being concerned about the outcome and results and whether people will like it or not is never an easy thing. Not knowing if you and your music is enough, not knowing if you will make it. The group has been so raw and honest with us fans more than anything else and that’s something else I really appreciate about BTS. They are always honest with us fans and don’t hide anything from us. They share with us their concerns and thoughts, they communicate with us on how they’re feeling and allow us to see their vulnerability and sensitivity. But at the same time, they always put us first and worry about us more than themselves. They don’t want us to worry about them so they pretend like everything’s fine and put on smiles even though inside they’re probably tired, probably hurting, probably breaking inside because of the countless hours of work and practice that they have to commit to. I could especially see this during the end of the year performances when they all just looked so damn tired. So damn tired. I noticed that they weren’t as energetic as they were, but they still tried to put on a good performance for their fans and for the audience. They used up any last ounce of energy they had in themselves for these performances that required so much hard work and effort and time and practice. As if all the concerts, all the activities, all the practices, all the performances prior to the end of the year award shows wasn’t exhausting, demanding, and challenging enough for them, they still had so much to do until it was the very last day of 2016.

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Watching Rap Monster’s award speech at MAMA 2016 and hearing him mention how many people hadn’t expected BTS to make it, had told them that they wouldn’t make it, absolutely broke my heart. Because while the comment is an awful truth that accurately reflects the reality of the Korean music industry that’s evolved in recent years, seeing just exactly how far BTS has come to have earned and won daesangs this year makes me so proud. Who knew that the seven-member boy group who debuted from a small unknown company in 2013 at a time when so many other groups were also doing the same would improve and grow to become popular superstars with now millions of views on their YouTube music video’s?  It’s the most ironic thing ever, but at the same time makes me so happy and proud – that they’ve come to achieving their dreams and succeeding. Nowadays, the chance of success within a music industry over saturated with hundreds of groups debuting every year is so small and slim, but BTS was the exception. BTS was that rare case of a group succeeding and it was because of their hard work, their strength, their passion, their perseverance, them. They literally started from the bottom, having gone from watching MAMA on their TV screen back at their dorms during their trainee years to performing on that huge stage and winning a daesang at the same exact grand scale award ceremony that they could only dream of performing at when they were trainees. These guys are the epitome of hard work, of goals, of success, of ambition, of love. They deserve everything in the world. They have fought hard and have earned every single win, every single fan, every single thing that they have gotten in this world. And I honestly cannot wait to see what else is in store for them in 2017. It’s taken them 3 and a half years to finally be where they are now with glimpses of success now in sight, but they’re here now and they’re not going to be going anywhere soon. Their journey has just barely started and they can only climb from here up. 3 years ago when I decided to stan BTS and became a fan of them, I just knew that they would hit it big. I just knew that they would make it big. And here they are. They have. And they’re going to keep rising.

I’m very very happy to say that I was able to get tickets to BTS’s world tour concert this year in April (after many weeks of anxiety and nervous waiting) and will be seeing them live in concert. I just can’t express my feels about seeing them live in person, but all I know is that I just can’t wait. It’s going to be great. And this is what’s going to keep me going for the rest of this year. I will be getting the chance to witness and see the seven boys who have provided me with so much happiness and life the past 3 years of my life, who has been there for me when I didn’t have much. I have so much to thank BTS for and there are so many things about them that I am grateful for. Individually and as a group, they have done so much for me and I am eternally grateful for their presence in my life. My life has been great ever since. Who would have known that the small decision to check out their ‘Graduation Song’ MV and ‘No More Dream’ MV 3 years ago would now be a decision that has led me to stan the amazing and talented group who has changed my life endlessly and effortlessly within those years?

When I think back upon my years of being an ARMY, I get emotional. Having been a fan from the very beginning and witnessing the amount of improvement and growth that these boys have gone through, they have changed immensely in all aspects. When I revisit their older music videos or when I see old clips or pictures of them, I get emotional because I know just how much they have grown over the years. And in a way, I sometimes miss the moments and times when BTS wasn’t that popular yet. When they were more than rookies but less than the trendy group they are now, when their name was known but they weren’t that big yet. I was able to keep them to myself and just enjoy the small little moments of being their fan, but now that they have grown exponentially, some things have changed (not that it’s bad or anything). It’s bittersweet in a way.

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So thank you Bangtan Boys. Thank you for all your hard work, for all that you do, for all the hours of practice, effort, passion, and love you pour into your work. You guys are wonderful at the work that you do and while I know that there are clouds of concerns, doubts, anxiety, nervousness, and worries that fill your mind, I hope y’all know that ARMY’s love you for the way you are. I hope that among this world that can be filled with negative and hurtful things, y’all find the hope and inspiration to continue being the change and radiance that this world needs. Y’all have done so much for so many the past few years and y’all will keep doing big things. Your journey has just barely started, let’s keep flying and spreading our wings for many years to come my loves.

Sources: Peppy Grace Subs @ Youtube. Credit goes to all original owners. GIFs and pictures are not mine.

Happy New Year!

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Hello readers!

Ahhhh, the new year has finally dawned upon us. 2016 passed by very quickly, but I am quite glad that 2017 is here. I would be lying if I said that I didn’t want 2016 to end (because I did).

2016 for me marked a year of heartbreak, self-discovery, loss, sadness, and grief but also a year full of happiness, joy, laughter, smiles, and most of all – growth. It wasn’t an easy year and in fact was probably a year full of the most difficult moments that I have ever faced in my life yet. 2016 marked a year full of challenges – challenges that tested and expanded my capacity, my boundaries, my limits, my strength. But I’m glad to say that although the year wasn’t easy, it was helpful and I’ve grown so much as a result of all what’s happened in 2016. Although I didn’t do all that I had wanted to do or did a few things I regret or wished I could go back and do some things twice again, it was an interesting year and I’m quite glad that it has passed. I’m excited for what 2017 has to offer me and what awaits for me in the future. There are many many things I want to do and be able to fulfill and accomplish and I hope this year will be the year that I get to cross some things off my bucket list and achieve some great stuff. I’m gonna make this year my year.

I know I haven’t been as active on this blog even though I’ve tried plenty of times. It’s always difficult running a blog, but I’m gonna try (again) and I’m gonna keep trying. I would like to keep this blog as active as possible, but I hadn’t realized how difficult that can be. But as I continue to watch Korean dramas and keep up with K-Pop (my BTS babies), there shall be more things to write about and more posts created.

Other than obsess over BTS like never before recently, I’ve also been watching a few Korean dramas: Legend of the Blue Sea, Goblin, and Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo. I also finally watched and finished Signal after constant nagging from my younger sister to watch it. It’s been great watches so far for all 3 dramas and I’m looking forward to how the dramas are going to evolve and end. Here’s to hoping there’ll be happy endings for everyone (pleaseeeee).

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How has the new years been for y’all? What are your hopes and goals coming into this new year?

Source: GIFs are NOT mines. Credits goes to original owners.

Choco Bank: Episode 2 Recap

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While episode one focused more on our male lead Eun-haeng, episode 2 shifts its focus on our female lead Cho Co. Through this heart-warming episode, we learn more about her, her passion, and who she is.

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The second episode turns its attention and focus on Cho Co, our Choco Bank owner who has loved chocolate ever since she was a little kid. She was able to fulfill her dreams of owning her own chocolate shop by owning and opening Choco Bank.

But unlike what she expected, her shop did not become so successful. Her only visitor to the shop is her landlord (played by Kim Young Hee) who reminds her how much she’s owes her. Cho Co pleads her landlord to give her another month. Just one more month and she’ll pay off 3 months worth of rent to her. The landlord suggests visiting the bank to pull out loans so she can pay off the money she owes her landlord. Even though Cho Co refuses to and declines, she is forced out of the shop by the landlord.

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Once at the bank, Cho Co meets with a bank teller (played by trending female comedian Kim Suk!) to pull out a business loan like her landlord suggested. She hands the bank teller her ID only to get laughed at by the bank teller because of her name. Nooo 😦 She ends up pulling out the business loan like she had intended to do.

Back at the shop, Cho Co whines and complains to her now employee, Eun-haeng, about the loan and reminds Eun-haeng that it was his fault she had to do all of this. She yells at him to a better job at sweeping the floors, but Eun-haeng can’t take it any more. He’ll get her the $5,000 she lost.

Through Crowdfunding, Eun-haeng helps Cho Co raise $5,000 on the website. She’s excited at the news and the results, but Eun-haeng realizes that she doesn’t really have a business plan – which probably explains the reason why her business is failing. While he suggests it’s important to know about the statistics of her financial and general management, Cho Co believes that as long as she just makes good chocolate for people to eat, she’ll be fine.

03

Eun-haeng, who clearly doesn’t agree, loses all hope and finds his part in helping her raise the $5,000 done. But Cho Co has something else in mind. She proposes that they both become partners: she’ll worry and focus on making the chocolate and Eun-haeng can deal with the financial and general management of the shop. Eun-haeng refuses at first, but when he receives a text from his mother about the reservation at a steakhouse she made for her friends, he gives in to Cho Co and agrees to work for her for just a month.

04

Working with Eun-haeng has proven to be beneficial for Cho Co in many ways. With his help and assistance, she learns about this thing called “online banking” where she can look at her bank information and account without actually having to go to the bank and she begins to receive customers. Working together has helped Cho Co and Eun-haeng become closer it’s as if they almost might have feelings for each other. One night, a group of 3 female customers are amazed and in love with Eun-haeng after he helps them pay for their dessert. Cho Co witnesses this and grows a bit jealous at the attention that Eun-haeng was receiving from the female customers. Afterwards, Eun-haeng goes to meet with Cho Co and asks her about a cake that she made. The frosting on the cake writes “I’m kill you” which is grammatically incorrect as Eun-haeng points out. He assumes that she might not have been a good student in school to which she refutes by saying that she graduated and even went to college in France. Haha.

It’s peaceful at the shop so far until a customer enters the shop. He’s busy talking on the phone, but quickly tells Cho Co his order before going back to talk on the phone. It’s a bit too fast for Cho Co to remember the guy’s order so she tries to ask him for his order again, but before she could successfully do so, the guy’s phone call abruptly ends and he grows mad. He blames Cho Co for ruining his phone call to which Eun-haeng becomes impatient and criticizes the customer. Just as the customer is about to hit Eun-haeng in the face, Cho Co comes running at the customer with her “I’m kill you” cake and smashes it onto his face before he can do anything else. Aww, the cake looked good too.

05

As they clean up the mess, Eun-haeng confides in Cho Co and confesses that while she has everything easy, he’s had a hard time – especially finding a job. In response to his sad story, she tells him a sad story about her friend who was raised by her grandmother because her mother died and her father abandoned her. She ended up sacrificing her education to chase after and fulfill her dreams of becoming a chocolatier, eventually becoming one. This story about this “friend” was none other than about Cho Co. She adds that even though she might have had a difficult life, she doesn’t want that to get in the way of her living her life.

Even when things get hard, I want to live sweetly and happily, like chocolate.

Eun-haeng confidently comments that’ll he make it happen. He’ll make her life happy and he’ll make her happy. But Cho Co is confused.. Why would he want to make her happy? Eun-haeng suddenly becomes confused as well and isn’t really sure why he would want to make her happy.

06

In the midst of all this confusion and tension, a young male suddenly shows up at the shop and excitedly runs towards Cho Co, giving her a tight squeeze in his arms and exclaiming, “I missed you Mal-nyeon nuna!”

My Comments

Oh my gooooooooodnesssss! This episode is so, SO precious. So many things happened, so many GOOD things happened, and I’m so happy.

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I’m glad we got the backstory that I stated I had wanted in my recap of the first episode. It was really nice getting to know more about our two main characters and especially about Cho Co in this episode. You can witness her passion for chocolate through the hard work, effort, and sacrifices she’s had to make in order to run and maintain her Choco Bank shop. She’s always been determined and even though she’s faced plenty of difficulties and obstacles growing up, she never let that prevent her from achieving her dreams of opening up her own chocolate shop. And even when her shop wasn’t doing so well as she had wanted and expected, she never once gave up. She kept on going and persevering. It’s these traits and aspects of Cho Co that makes me full-on support her and root for her. She might not be the most intelligent lady, but her power and her strength and her wittiness is what gives her a simple but nice outlook on life that makes her so unique and awesome.

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It’s obvious that by working with each other as business partners and spending more time with each other, Eun-haeng and Cho Co are starting to slowly develop feelings for each other. I loved the scene at the end when Eun-haeng stated that he would make Cho Co happy, but when questioned why he would do that for Cho Co he was also just as confused. Is it maybe because he’s unknowingly developed feelings for her that he doesn’t know he has yet or realize he has yet and wants to make her happy? Or is it because he feels sorry for the difficult and sad life she’s had growing up? Why would Eun-haeng want to make Cho Co happy? And more importantly, HOW will he make her happy?

It was so sweet witnessing Eun-haeng and Cho Co open up to each other. They told each other their life stories and their concerns that they might not have had told anyone else. It’s little moments and scenes like this that makes you feel all fuzzy and warm inside. They’re slowly confiding and opening up to each other and are starting to feel comfortable around each other. They might just see each other as business partners for now, but their relationship could possibly evolve into something more if this pace continues.

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I’m assuming that the young man at the end of the episode, played by actor Yeon Joon-seok, is going to be our second male lead. I actually recognize him as the young child actor who played Kim Nam Gil’s character in Shark and was actually really interested in him, but never cared too much to follow him. I’m glad to be seeing him active and best yet in this drama. I’m curious as to who he is and how he knows Cho Co (or shall I say Mal-nyeon since that’s what he called her as soon as he saw her). I’m also assuming he’ll be a competitor for Cho Co’s love and attention. Maybe it might not be so easy for Eun-haeng to make Cho Co happy like how he had wished before now that there’s another guy in the picture.

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While I love Yeon Joon-seok, a part of me wished that the drama would have just stayed the way it was – with our Eun-haeng and Cho Co working together and coming together to help and achieve each other’s dreams without any outside intervention from anyone. It would have been nice to witness them both grow closer as time goes by and face any obstacles ahead of them together so they both recognize how well they work together. I guess this realization will only come with the addition of other characters, including the second male lead at the end of this episode. How bittersweet.