Barfing Out Paragraphs (BTS)

It’s probably been a couple years ago now, but sometime back in the recent past Cassi introduced me to BTS. At first it was almost like a hostage situation ๐Ÿ˜… where when I would visit she would play different videos of theirs and “make” me watch. Then after I warmed up to them she’d just send playlists, knowing that I’d now watch them without her having to watch over me to make sure. ๐Ÿ˜ It’s a difficult thing… getting someone to give “your music” a fair chance… and even more so when most of the lyrics are in Hangul. ๐Ÿค”๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ

But I quickly started to see what she saw in them. The lyrics of so many of their songs are filled with meaning… not typical pop music schlock, for the most part. And with seven members in the group, their choreography in their live performances and videos is definitely on point. ๐Ÿ˜ฏ๐Ÿ˜ƒ And then there’s that general feeling of being impressed at how hard they work to record their songs, produce their videos, learn the insane amount of choreography, going on tour, etc… meanwhile, most of them are also trying to learn English. ๐Ÿ˜ง The amount of dedication to what they do is ridiculous.

If you ever find yourself interested enough to watch some of their videos, make sure that you have the English captions turned on… or find someone who has made a Hangul / Romanization / English lyric video. After a while, it’s surprising how many words you’ll find yourself picking up and being able to repeat. ๐Ÿค“ And as for listening in the car or elsewhere… once you’ve gotten the vibe of what the song means from the videos, you can kinda take that with you without having to understand the language.

But since the time that I was “forced” to watch their stuff, to today… when I’m probably as big of a fan as Cassi is, if not more… I’ve definitely taken to them, and I’ve got a BTS / K-Pop playlist on Spotify that’s probably 60 songs deep. ๐Ÿ˜ I’ve been absorbing the language, watching travel videos from SK, giving other K-Pop artists a chance as well… it’s surprising how much interest I have in all this stuff that I hadn’t even thought of just a few years ago.

But BTS is huge now… and their fans, who go by “ARMY” … those of us old enough to understand, you’d call ARMY folks “Beatles Level” fans. ๐Ÿ˜ Most of them are young girls, but there’s a growing percentage of ARMY that cover all ages, all nationalities, boys, girls, men, women. ๐Ÿง’๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘จ๐Ÿปโ€๐Ÿฆฐ๐Ÿ‘ฑ๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ๐Ÿ‘ฉ๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘ฑ๐Ÿปโ€โ™€๏ธ๐Ÿง”๐Ÿป๐Ÿง“๐Ÿป๐Ÿง‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘จ๐Ÿปโ€๐Ÿฆณ We’re definitely outnumbered by the screaming and crying young girls, heh… but we still count.

But that’s the concert that I got the tickets for. ๐Ÿ˜ณ They’re doing a world tour, but unfortunately no stops in Ohio. ๐Ÿ˜’ It was funny, on the Ticketmaster site, after waiting in the presale queue – once I was able to see the seat map to try and pick two seats, all of the blue dots (seats) were turning to gray (taken) so quickly it was like someone was playing a sped up version of whack-a-mole. ๐Ÿ˜„

Being a bucket list concert, I went for two seats (on an aisle… heh) in the first level of the bowl seating. No nosebleed seats, where you’re so high that you feel like if you stumble you’ll fall and disappear into the depths of the stadium, never to be seen again. ๐Ÿ˜ฏ๐Ÿ˜… I actually tried to get tickets last year, but they sold out before I could even pull the trigger. And this year, Cassi actually has a boyfriend now… but that’s hopefully only a slight complication. ๐Ÿค”

I actually like the d00d, and I think he’s generally okay with me, and half of the time when I see Cassi now I also see him, so that makes it easier to try to plan something out where everyone is happy. ๐Ÿ™‚ He knows what a big fan Cassi is, and how much this concert means to her, plus he knew coming into it that there was a chance I’d be getting me and her tickets this year if possible. And he’d go to the concert, but he’s not really a fan fan, and the tickets were expensive… so he’ll likely just come along on our road trip and be a part of everything except the show. ๐Ÿ™‚ I think it’ll be fine…

And like I told Cassi… he has every right to put the kibosh on it if he wanted to. Not many guys would be okay with their girlfriend going to a concert with an ex, let alone on an overnight road trip – so I bought the tickets with the idea that he’d be going too. But that’s if his schedule will allow it. ๐Ÿ˜ฏ๐Ÿ˜ฌ So if he can’t go, I’m not sure what will happen… but I told Cassi to let him know there’d be no hard feelings if he was like, “Umm… no, I don’t think I want my girlfriend going away with her ex for two nights alone, without me. Yeah, uhh… no.” ๐Ÿ˜‚ No hard feelings from me, anyway… but woo would Cassi be upset if she didn’t get to go to this concert.

Wow… I rambled quite a bit here. ๐Ÿ˜ณ๐Ÿค“ It helps though… helps me start mentally putting the pieces in place, keeps me excited and looking forward to it, and also keeps me on top of the situation so everything will go down with as few hitches as possible. ๐Ÿ™‚๐Ÿคž๐Ÿป But my life is so sedate, and I do very few “big things” anymore… and this is a big-ass thing, so of course I’m gonna be a little anxious about it. ๐Ÿ˜ But right now my anticipation and excitement is far outweighing those thoughts.

Phones: Everything’s Easier

Speaking of the holidays… over the past couple of days I’ve been trying to get my phone loaded up with all of our familiar family Christmas songs. Most of them are everyone else’s family songs as well, sung by old favorites, and those are pretty easily found on Spotify. ๐Ÿ˜‹๐ŸŽ„๐ŸŽถ So I just pick the ones that I want and add them to a playlist. The good cheezy 70s sounding ones though, the ones on obscure albums or even records that Firestone and Goodyear would give away each year… those are a bit more difficult to come by.

Terry Baxter and His Orchestra… I had to go on Amazon a few years ago and buy one particular album in MP3 format, which I now have to actually copy over to my phone – rather than just streaming them like the others on Spotify. And it’s funny, there are a few albums that were released under that artist’s name – but upon googling to find out what he looked like, or just more about him in general… it turns out that it was likely just a name that the record company put on albums of similar sound, when they were really just performed by a house band or even different folks. ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ

(In the upper right corner of this video you can select from 42 songs in the playlist for this album.)

Doesn’t make any difference to me… but still, that’s an interesting thing to find out about 40 years later. But now I’ve got all the happy ones, some sad ones, 8-bit / chiptune Christmas covers, and even a few from the South Park / Mr Hankey Christmas episode ready to go. ๐Ÿ˜‹ I’m doing all this now, while I’m in a decent mood, because I wanna try a little harder this year to not let the whole season just blow by me. For various reasons over the past several years, the “holiday mood” has been harder to come by – but being able to play these songs as I fart around the house or drive in town for food or whatever… it’ll help.

I still need to find a good version of “Christmas Chimes are Calling” from one of my favorite specials:

Now I have to look in the basement at some point and see if I still have a tree. ๐Ÿค”๐Ÿง

Saranghae, Naleul Tteonaji Mala

Cassi is starting to become a fan of South Korean pop music, of all things… heh… and every now and then she’ll suggest a song or video that she thinks I should check out, to see if she can get me to share in some of her excitement. ๐Ÿ˜ Normally it’s something okay but ultimately forgettable – but with this video and song, she found a winner. ๐Ÿ˜ƒ I can’t understand a damn word of what they’re saying… but thanks to the story of this video, and the 90s pop-rock sound, I love it.

I was confused during the first part of this video, so I’ll give you a hint as to what I think’s going on… ๐Ÿค”๐Ÿคจ He’s attending the funeral of a girl that he had gotten involved with about a week prior to her passing, and at some point during that time she had gotten him a watch. At the funeral, the watch causes him to jump back in time to a point right before they originally met. See what you think…

This band… and they are a band, unlike a lot of K-Pop groups… they cover nearly every genre that you can think of throughout their discography. Their lead singer has a voice that lets him handle anything he’d want to sing, from ballads, to pop songs, to actual rock/metal tunes. FTIsland doesn’t have a cult following since they don’t stick to a single genre, but I can respect a group much more when they play what they want to play, and because they can play any instruments in the first place. ๐Ÿ˜†๐Ÿค˜๐Ÿป

It’s nice to find new music that gives you the feels ๐Ÿ˜… even if it’s in a language you can’t understand. I like these guys, and I’ve added some of their tracks to my Spotify playlist, but it’s also encouraging me to try and find some new music like this in my native language. ๐Ÿ˜‹ Sure, I’ve got a couple thousand songs on my car’s USB drive, but there’s just something about experiencing new music…