Jun 232023

Now that I wrote 3000 words about the Cure concert without ever actually talking about the Cure concert, here are five things about that night that don’t involve me flipping out over a ring.

1. burn

Honestly one of my favorite songs, not just by the Cure, but of any artist of all time. Henry said that this was one of his favorite songs of the night too. I am trying not to cry right now.

This is not my video, I didn’t record hardly at all because I was too in the zone and as usual, I figured there would be a plethora of videos online afterward. But the audio is really great and you can totally hear how on point the whole band – it was on this level the entire night. The Cure is honestly one of the best bands I have ever seen in my whole life – they always seem to be 100% into it. It makes me wonder how I would feel if I was at one of their concerts, knowing nothing about them, only there to accompany a friend. Would I leave as a fan? I really can’t imagine how I wouldn’t – like, how do you witness something like this in person and not be affected? They even manage to permeate Henry’s thick-walled dork-heart.

2. Kpop fans v everyone else

Ok listen Brenda. You know that the Cure is tops in my heart. La Supreme. Bae. And this is nothing against them at all, but can we talk about the crowd? Shoooooo….it was not great. I mean, also not AWFUL but just not what I would have expected for a Cure concert. With the exception of the ABYSMAL, RUDE crowd at Coachella in 2004 since that was a festival, this might have been the worst vibe I’ve sensed out of all the times I’ve seen them.

Now, this is not a blanket statement – I’m not trying to say, “OMG I was the only true fan there” because it wasn’t at all, so if you were there and disagree do not come for me!! I’m just saying that my observation from where I sat was that it felt like many – not all – people were there for the novelty of it. These people were all middle-aged, white, and mostly drunk. Maybe they were reliving their goth college years, or wanted to hear the handful of radio hits that they know, who knows. But a lot of the people there made me uncomfortable and distracted me with their constant need to fidget, chat with their neighbors, leave to buy more beer. It was a lot of letting people in and out of the row, you know? And I noticed this at Genesis too so I think it’s really a demographic thing. Like, these are elder fans who perhaps have expendable income and/or just go to concerts to party / relive the golden years / get drunk off of nostalgia. And OK that’s fine, but there are also people who pay money they don’t really have to see a band in real life that they love with their whole hearts and have so much appreciation and gratitude…

That’s 99.9999999% of the fans you see at kpop concerts, you guys. It is legit. No one is there because they just know one song. They are there because they know every member’s name, know the inside jokes, know the choreo.

I realized that night that while I still love non-kpop music, I prefer kpop concerts in general now.

(For instance, I’m watching another video from the Cleveland show and there is a broad in in who hasn’t stopped talking to someone three people over her for the entirety of Disintegration. Like bitch, sit down then. You’re bothering us.)

But I will give big props to the Tallest Guy in the Land who was standing in front of Henry. (Originally me but I switched seats with Henry lol.) He glanced behind him at one point and when he realized how much taller he was than Henry and the guy next to Henry, he sat down on the back of his chair so that he wasn’t fully sitting but also was at the height of an average standing man, and said, “Is that better?” Henry and the guy next to him were both like, “Oh, you’re fine!” because Henry, for all the bitching he does when BOO HOO HE CAN’T SEE AT THE NCT CONCERT BC GIRLS ARE STANDING UP AND DANCING, actually is content just being there and doesn’t need to see the stage at every single second of the night like some of us do.

Anyway, I thought that guy was really cool. Him and a bunch of people in front of him were really decent and seemed like genuine fans, but then the three women next to him (and directly in front of me) chatted like fucking mothers at a neighborhood watch meeting, checked their phones, texted, got up to pee, got up to get beer, looked everywhere but the stage unless one of the more popular radio songs were being played. It was so annoying. They did seem into it at some points so I think the bigger issue here is that Americans in general are just one gigantic attention deficit.

3. Toxic Masculinity in Row N

Sometime before the opening band started, a group of people practically fell into the seats right behind Henry and me. I mean, they made such a commotion as they skirted their way down the row, it was almost comedic if it hadn’t been so goddamn annoying. Loud AF. CLEARLY drunk. Total middle-aged trash with zero boundaries or awareness.

It was two married couples – the one woman had the most annoying voice, high-pitched voiced (fuck, Henry compared her to someone and it was so spot-on but now I can’t think), the other woman was actually fine but of course she was sat the furthest away from me, and the two husbands were disgusting, loud-ass pig-slobs who didn’t just speak, they SHOUTED, the type of toxic ageing bro-men who purposely talk loud because they think that what they’re saying is SO FUCKING FUNNY AND IMPORTANT, that they want EVERYONE AROUND THEM TO HEAR. Fucking crass assholes, honestly. The one kept stretching out his legs so his disgusting sandaled foot would jut out from under Henry’s seat and I was burping back bile, for real.

4. If you can’t beat ’em….

I told Henry that the only way I was going to be able to survive with those loud asses sitting behind us would be if I made contact somehow. Finding a way to civilly butt into the conversation of problematic people sometimes helps humanize them for me, if that makes sense. Lucky for me, the MEN had departed on their third alcohol refill run during the storm delay, when the couple next to the people started talking to the wives. At one point, one of the wives said that they were from Pittsburgh and I was like “I’M IN” and the way I spun around so fast in my seat to finally play the role of Erin Buttinsky, well, Henry was laughing about it for days afterward.

(“Jesus Christ, you turned around so fast and started talking,” he laughed but it didn’t sound like a HAHA I LOVE YOU NEW-FIANCEE, YOU ARE SO CUTE AND FUNNY laugh but more of a disgusted “I hate when you do that shit” scoff.)

“We’re from Pittsburgh too!” I cried out so loud that several people from the row behind them also turned to look at where the manic talking was coming from.

The wives looked a bit caught off guard initially at my enthusiasm for sharing a city, but then they quickly abandoned the other couple and talked solely to me about various Pgh things that you wouldn’t understand if you’re not from here so I won’t bore you, but I will say that Henry REFUSED to turn around, not even ONCE, just bristled silently in his seat like the stand-offish lump that he is, so that was exciting to have them see that I was attending a Cure concert with a serial killer.

After I said that I was originally from “Jefferson Hill, you know, by Century III Mall,” one of the ladies said, “Oh did you hear about that boy that recently fell through the roof of the mall??” and I was like, “OMG NO?!” and she said something else about it, to which I didn’t know how else to respond aside from saying, “Oh wow” and then turning back around in my seat without a goodbye or enjoy the show or fuck off or anything. Just quietly and awkwardly cut the cord on the convo and peaced out. That’s how I do. Hi, I’m Erin. Nice to meet you, ok bye.

Anyway, my plan worked because I was able to tolerate them so much more after that, except for once the concert started and I found out quickly and painfully that one of the husbands was a WHISTLER. Hooboy, the why those whistles broke through my skull like a buckshot.

5. The Set List

  • Alone
  • Pictures of You
  • Lovesong
  • And Nothing if Forever
  • If Only Tonight We Could Sleep

  • Burn
  • Kyoto Song
  • A Night Like This
  • Push
  • At Night
  • Play for Today
  • A Forest (Henry’s fave Cure song, FYI)
  • Shake Dog Shake
  • From the Edge of the Deep Green Sea (LOL ughhhhh)
  • Endsong


  • I Can Never Say Goodbye
  • It Can Never Be the Same
  • Want
  • Plainsong
  • Disintegration


  • Lullaby
  • Six Different Ways
  • The Walk
  • Friday I’m In Love
  • Close To Me
  • Whay Can’t I Be You?
  • In Between Days
  • Just Like Heaven
  • Boys Don’t Cry

OK, that’s it. I was hoping for The Caterpillar, Charlotte Sometimes, The Kiss, Same Deep Water As You among others but I was still happy with the set list because it’s the fucking Cure. The fucking Cure.

Jun 152023

Sorry if you’re only here to get the SCOOP because today’s post is just photos from our early parking experience. Of course I was being a psycho about everything related to this day because it’s THE CURE and it’s not very often they come to the US and also the weather forecast was ABYSMAL for that day and I was panicking about the rain and merch lines, and GIVE THIS BITCH A PILL, WILL YA. Anyway, the option to pay $20 for early parking was available and the only reason I agreed that we should do it was because they said that merch booths would be set up in the lots and honestly, the convenience of not only snatching up what I want ahead of time but also being able to take it back to the car rather than keeping it with me all fucking night long was worth it.

This meant that we had to hang out for over 2 hours in the parking lot, but whatever. At least I was able to get my daily steps in, lol.

Here we are, sitting in the grass after securing my merch. I got two posters (one was show-specific and the other was for the entire tour) and a shirt. I was extremely content, especially since we didn’t have to wait in line. Oh, and all three of those things together cost the same as ONE SHIRT at a Kpop concert. Jesus.

(I still you, Kpop. You are still worth it to me.)

We went back to the car after awhile, making it just before the skies opened up and dropped torrents of rain on us. I’m glad that I’m obsessed with checking the weather constantly because we brought umbrellas and ponchos from home just in case. Henry was all, “We will probably be fine.” HE THOUGHT.

Me walking into the Cure concert with my happy Korean umbrella, LOL.


Anyway, I was pleasantly surprised with how smoothly entrance into the plaza was. I NEVER bring a purse to concerts anymore so we were able to skip right on ahead to the empty NO BAG line and made into the place in record time. But then then we still had another hour to kill before the rest of the pavilion opened up so that we could get to our seats. But one of the perks of being there early was that we got to hear soundcheck. We couldn’t see the stage because of the hillside but just hearing Robert’s voice and knowing we were in the same goddamn vicinity – holy shit, it made me tear up so bad.

OK on that beautiful note, I’m going to piss off and peace out. More on the actual concert, and “the thing that happened,” in my next post maybe possibly. I’m tired. :/


Apr 242023

Hey just when you guys were like “I literally do not care about this NCT bullshit and will never care to learn about the sub-units or whatever this bitch keeps calling them,” a brand new sub-unit was formed! This one is called NCT DoJaeJung (for Doyoung, Jaehyun, and Jungwoo from NCT127).

They recently debuted with the song Perfume which I have been obsessing over and it also made me think about how during the whole life thus far, I have had three very distinct signature scents. I mean, after I graduated from the Avon roller scents in middle school thanks to my friend Cara who used to bring in her mom’s Avon books all the time – my favorite scene is on the tip of my tongue but I can’t think of it!! I just tried to Google and none of those roller ones are even coming up – did I dream it? That’s what my mom would say. Anyway, it was something beachy/tropical and it was the only one I ever ordered.

In high school, I was BIG INTO Versace, so his Red Jeans scent was definitely my jam. I think I mentioned this recently, but Henry found a bottle of it for me, and I have been happily spritzing myself with nostalgia ever since.

I also was very attached to YSL’s Champagne (I think it’s called Yvesse now) also in high school. I haven’t smelled that in decades, but I just closed my eyes after looking at the bottle online on my nose remembered.

But the one that most recently was my signature, and I really should get some more of it, was Dior’s Hypnotic Poison. I used to wear it religiously in my early years at The Law Firm and people would always recognize my presence because of it – it is very unmistakable and unique.

Cool, now put on some red jeans, drink some champers, and watch this hypnotic poison of a video and then tell me what your signature scent is while I do a deep-dive into the Avon archives looking for that stupid cheap-ass perfume that now I suddenly need to sniff again.

Apr 182023

I’m so fucking annoying, right? Here’s another separate blog post about the NCT Dream concert while I continue to get ahold of myself long enough to put into words my feelingzzzz. This will be my feelingzzzz but in video format, I guess.

It’s so hard for me to choose a favorite NCT Dream song, and they did perform most of my *unordered* faves. I do try to abstain from recording at concerts because it’s like they say, no one wants to see your shit-quality zoomed in concert footage (except for me if you went to see NCT Dream, I love watching everyone’s vlogs!!). But there were several songs that I was like, “FUCK IT, I AM FINALLY SEEING THEM BELT THESE NOTES INTO THE SAME FUCKING AIR THAT I AM CURRENTLY BREATHING AND I WANT TO HAVE THESE ON MY PHONE FOREVERMORE.” I put three of them on YouTube*.

*(Unsearchable because I do not like any attention on YouTube, dating back to a billion years when I uploaded an old video of Henry taking me to E.99 and St. Clair Ave in Cleveland so that I could pay homage to Bone Thugs -n- Harmony and I got BLASTED for being annoying/hideous/etc etc. I mean, those statements aren’t wrong! But still, I was like ‘OK crossing off YOUTUBE STAR from my list of dreams – this was before everyone and their grandma was posting vlogs btw, but somehow my manic braying still caught traction.)

  1. Dive Into You (this a Haechan focus, but it’s the best quality version I could find and this song can melt my heart on even the iciest work day).

They genuinely love each other and it shows in every performance. <3

2. TRIGGER THE FEVER! (my version lol)

I wasn’t really looking at my phone a lot of the time because I frantically swinging my lightstick and uh, it shows lol. But this song is so fucking uplifting! Mark has co-writing credit on this song, which was the Official Song of a FIFA tournament in Seoul in 2017. He helped write this one year after he debuted!

3. Countdown (3,2,1)

A FAVE. Haechan at 00:35 sends me, and then when Renjun comes in at 2:25 and does the snaps…..leave me alone, please.

4. CANDY (chaotic last song of the night version)

Jaemin holding onto his plush carrot the whole time, Haechan being his absolutely unhinged self – I want this video to live inside my heart until the day I die, and then haunt Chooch after that for the rest of his life. The way these 7 dreamies bring me so much happiness!

5. Dreaming

Look, this is an absolute jam and I listened to it 89123740740974b times when the NCT2020 album came out, but I am JUST AS MUCH posting this for Jeno in that cut-out shirt, OK. We tell truths here.


I love this because for a brief moment in time, my face was captured at its absolute peak happiness. Thank you to the person who basically uploaded the entire concert on YouTube so that I was able to go back and find this after noticing it that night. And the way my friends pointed out how happy I looked when I sent it to some of them made it even more special!

7. Renjun’s outfit in this portion of the concert

UGH I loved my seat but I would have also loved to have been that close. DROOL EMOJI


Ok! Now that I got all that out of my system…oh also! When I was creeping on YouTube, I found videos from the girl who was sitting next to me – she’s from Seattle and flew to Newark and then to Chicago to see them. She was super chill and then once the concert started, I was like, “oh ok I did not expect that level of frenzy to come forth.” Anyway, Henry was laughing because in all of her videos, you can hear my loud ass shrieking lol.

Ok 잘 자.


Apr 162023

My friend Veronica pointed out the night before the NCT Dream concert in Chicago that there was a full moon, that maybe the effects would extend to Friday and bring me good vibes at the concert. Well, I think she was on to something because it was sincerely, without coming off as being hyperbolic or corny, one of THE best concert experiences of my life. And I have been to a lot of concerts of all types and sizes!

In this post, let’s talk about the pre-show haps. You already know what my ‘fit looked like UNLESS YOU DON’T READ THIS DUMP REGULARLY.

Our hotel was right across the street from the Allstate Arena so that was extremely convenient. When we first drove past the arena earlier that day to get to the hotel, there was a HUGE line already formed. That’s the one main reason I opted out of getting a GA floor ticket – it actually cost about the same as the seat I ended up scoring, but it was standing room only (some Kpop concerts have seats on the floor). I’m of the age where my time is valuable and my endurance for ‘camping’ outside of an arena is at an all-time low. To be quite frank, I would not even do this for The Cure. I just want to be able to see the stage comfortably and while the prospect of being barricade is tempting because YES, I WANT EYE CONTACT WITH IDOLS, I can admit that this season of my life has passed. But I will still scream and cry and freak out over whose poca (photo card) I pull from albums! DONT GET ME WRONG.

That being said, we didn’t leave the hotel until around 6:30, I would say, almost died jaywalking (there was no crosswalks at the intersections!?) and reached a side of the arena that had two entrances. I was really confused because as we were approaching the arena straight on, I could see a huge-ass line of NCTzens snaking all the way from the second entrance, down the length of the arena, into the parking lot. Yet, there were some stragglers approaching from the left and going right through the first door.

“Is that like, a VIP entrance?” I asked mostly just to myself because tf does Henry know, right? There were two girls who had been walking in front of us and I could tell that they were also debating what to do – cross the street and attempt to go straight into the first door, or walk all the way to end of the line waiting to enter the second door.


Just then, a security member came out of the first door and shouted, “FOLKS, THIS DOOR IS OPEN, THERE IS NO LINE. THIS DOOR IS OPEN.” So I was like, “Shit, run!” and we (well, I) ran across the road and pretty much STRAIGHT through the door since neither of us had bags that needed to be searched.

Was it a dick move considering many of those people had been camping all day? I mean, maybe, but we weren’t GA/floor so it’s not like we were taking someone’s spot, and there were people coming in from the parking lot on the left who were strolling right on in too. It’s not our fault that the arena didn’t do a better job directing people!

So we got lucky and this ended up being one of the seamless concert entrances we’ve experienced.

The best part was that the first merch table we approached only had about 20 people in line, so we slid right up on that.

The line was made up of a few roped-off switchbacks, and there was a girl two rows ahead of me who opened her tote bag and called out, “Anyone want any freebies?” Of course everyone near her happily reached into the bag but I was a bit too far away, so I had to yell, and I DO MEAN HOLLER, “Ooh, can I have one?!”

“Oh my god,” Henry murmured in the key of Bob’s Burger.

I had to reach over two lines to grab one of the tiny envelopes in her bag, literally making the line in between us come to a halt lest they get clotheslined on my arm.

But I got a Haechan poca out of it!

“You’re so embarrassing,” Henry sighed.

Yo, I can’t help it – as soon as I’m at a kpop concert, my inner Erin comes out, like I AM FREE TO BE ME. I am super talkative, sociable, and a complete extrovert like I used to be so long ago before the real world crushed my soul into a pulp of jaded anxiety.

The merch line went extremely fast. I knew immediately which shirt I wanted, and when the (mildly-flustered) merch lady went to ring it up, she paused and said, “Oh wait—” and reached under the counter. She then placed a small black envelope on top of the shirt. Apparently, merch purchases came with a poca! (I found out later that it was specifically the t-shirts.) This was a pleasant surprise! Of course, I found out later that it created a huge debacle because fans began to expect a poca with every item purchased, and then some of the merch tables ran out of pocas before the end of the night.

You don’t understand – collecting poca is a huge part of the Kpop scene. It’s not that important for me, which is literally the ONLY indication that I am an Elder in this scene. But I can promise you, if I was younger, I would probably be charging hundres of dollars worth of kpop albums to my mom’s AmEx, trying to collect every single poca.

To make it very simple, each kpop album comes with a random poca (photo card) of one of the members. It’s usually a selfie that they took, and then the backs have a handwritten message on them. They’re about credit card-sized, and you can even but little albums to store them in, or photo card holders to hook onto your backpack, keychain, belt loop, etc. (Yes, I have one lol. I was also using it for my work ID too, so it always looked like I was buzzing myself in with a picture of Renjun, lol.) Anyway!! Super fans will buy multiple copies of the same album trying to get the poca of their bias, or to just collect one of each member, and there are trading communities out there too. It’s a whole thing, you guys. When I say you don’t just get into Kpop on a casual basis….


By the time we got out of the merch line and started exploring the rest of the arena, the lines for every single merch table had grown so long that it had become difficult to walk. The lines spilled out into the main hallways and it was so chaotic.

I wanted to find my seat, just to get a lay of the land before the show started. I found my section, but Henry wasn’t able to actually go any further than the curtain, as it was being guarded by a STRICT older woman usher. She was not letting a single soul slip past on her watch. I showed her my ticket and she told me to go all the way down to the bottom-most row and turn left. I knew that AA was the first row so I admittedly didn’t listen very hard to the rest of her instructions. I went down to the first row and was immediately rattled because the last seat in that row was 11, and I was 12?? How could that be? Directly above seat 11 was a seat 12, but that was row BB so I was super confused and now my heart rate was up a bit. I really do not trust TicketMaster or the venues anymore so I really was thinking that I somehow had purchased, for $500+, a seat that didn’t exist

So, I went back to the usher lady and said I couldn’t find a seat 12 in the first row, and she once again reiterated her directions and I, once again, went down to row AA and couldn’t make this invisible seat 12 magically appear. Now I was just in the way of people trying to have their pictures taken with the stage behind them, so I sulked back up the steps, like, “OK great there is no seat there for me so I guess I will just spend the show crying in a garbage can instead.”

At this point, Henry (who kept telling me to CALM DOWN, and NOT TO WORRY ABOUT IT) wanted to use the bathroom before we went to find our respective seats. We just kept walking and walking, passing one women’s room after the next. Finally, Henry stopped to ask a male employee where the closest men’s room was.

“Alllllll the way down that way,” the guy said, motioning with his arm. “There are only two men’s rooms for tonight,” he laughed and we thought he was joking but it was true! Knowing that the majority of the night’s attendees would be women, the arena had turned most of the men’s rooms into women’s room, lol. We had to fight our way downstream, cutting through the unruly merch lines, for idiot Henry to find a damn bathroom.

After peeing in one of the two designated men’s rooms, maybe even christening it, Henry offered to find my seat because I am a lost sheep that needs to be herded. I gave him my phone so he could pretend that it was actually his seat and as the same usher gave him the same directions she gave me, I realized my fatal error: she had said “to the left,” and I, both times, WENT TO THE RIGHT. Literally, I was trying to give myself a worse seat than the one I actually had, by trying to will a seat to appear for me in a section farther from the stage.

What is my problem!? We will talk about my seat in a little bit because when Henry returned with an irritated smirk on his face (“Thanks, I had to make a bunch of people move because your seat is all the on the other side of that row”), I decided that I would just go to my seat closer to the start time of the concert, now that this usher was probably like, “are these two old heads trying to pull one over on me, or?”

Because these fucking concerts are so stupidly expensive, Henry and I can’t afford to sit next to each other because puchasing two seats at once would bankrupt us. OK, that’s being dramatic, but the fact is that while I can justify the cost of a ticket for myself because I am a Never-aging Fan Girl, Henry is content being there, but you know, with the cheapest ticket available. The day of the show, he bought a $60 seat in the upper level (and then proceeded to complain later when people in front of him stood, which prompted the same argument of “THAT IS WHAT YOU DO AT A CONCERT.” When I tell you that I wanted SO BADLY to stand during Genesis, but everyone else in our row was seated and there was a wall of elderly people behind us so I stayed in my seat….Ugh. I hate thinking about it. I was really glad to have had the opportunity to see Genesis, but it was a bit too calm for me.

Anyway, here are some pictures of Henry finding his seat. He had the WRONG SEAT at first, but go on Henry, make fun of me for my inability to follow directions and mentally map out the route to my own seat.

Henry in the Correct Section.

And lookie, there appear to be two dads down there! Henry was very happy to have scored himself an aisle seat. It’s really all he wants when it comes to concerts. Anyway, wow, now that I’m looking at this, upper level at this arena was not so bad!

Next, Henry wanted to buy a BEER. I didn’t think to ask him at that time, but this morning, my friend Alyson asked what kind of beer Henry got. Alyson always asks the important questions! I had to go into the basement to ask him (no, I don’t keep him in a cell down there, he was actually doing work on the Seoul Subway Sign v.2, so yeah, I guess he’s basically imprisoned). He said he got a COORS LIGHT because it was the only beer option. I do know that they were also selling Vizzy (I mean, duh, you can see that in the picture) and that one can cost $22!!! Maybe even $25?? I can’t remember now, but the girl who was sitting to my left had one and she told me how much it cost and I actually felt sick. Then she motioned that she was going to set down in front of her (we had a little wall in front of us so it wasn’t going to topple off of our row and onto the floor or anything, but I was still very protective of and it watched it like a hawk anytime we had to move to let people in or out of our row. I was like Vizzy security.

I was standing behind Henry when he was purchasing his beer (which came in commemorative Allstate Arena cup, wow) and heard the beer-pourer ask, “You here for your daughter?” and Henry said, “No, my wife” which is always so annoying because SWEETHEART you have not earned the privilege to call me your wife?? I leaned forward and yelled, “DON’T LIE!” and the beer-man laughed and then asked him, “Do you listen to this music?” and Henry said YES.

I took this picture after I got to my seat. The concert hadn’t started yet, but they always play MVs beforehand and then everyone screams like the members are actually on the stage, lol. I was so happy with this seat! The lady in red was the staff member guarding the entrance to the floor area which was directly on the other side of my seat. I was so close to the floor that my row (AA) had folding seats as opposed to the regular floor-mounted seats that the other sections had. I had a perfect view of the main stage, but the reason why I chose a section farther away from the main stage was because I knew there would be an extended stage, and that is what I wanted to be closer to. The end of that portion of the stage is right next to the head of that super tall blond girl in the sheer white shirt. It was almost as good as being on the floor as far as proximity to NCT Dream went, but way more comfortable because I was in a row with seats and while of course none of us sat through the concert, we didn’t have to worry about being crushed or having to strain to see past the people in front of us. And the crowd on the floor pretty stayed where they were too, it never expanded to where there people right in front of us, leaning against the sideboard like that striped-shirt person is doing up there. I was nervous about that, but wow, what excellent fortune I had with this seat! I was so worried that I chose poorly!

OK, I think this is all that I wanted to memorialize. In my next post, we will discuss THE CONCERT. Assuming I have returned to earth by then.

Mar 262023

Just a friendly reminder that my prince gets discharged from the military in one week.

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God help those around me, for I will be shrieking and sobbing my dumb face off.

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I have tried to avoid any Taemin content while he’s been away but I did a mini-binge this morning and I’m finally starting to let myself get stoked! Even Henry will usually put his phone down and watch if Taemin is on TV.

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Mar 192023

As usual, I have been putting off recapping the Kang Daniel show because it was such a perfect evening, and I don’t want that feeling to end!

Let me back up, a bit. When my friend Veronica sent me the announcement of Kang Daniel’s very first North American tour, I think this was back in December, I felt a knee-jerk reaction to buy tickets. Especially when I saw that there was a Toronto date. I don’t want to pretend that I am a huge KD stan, but he was my favorite member of WannaOne and I have always checked out each one of his solo comebacks. He is one of those rare idols with enough talent and charisma to successfully transition from a group to a solo artist. Plus, one of the more recent songs he released in 2020 (“Upside Down”) was one of my absolute favorite songs of the year and will always fondly associate it with driving to and from Six Flags New England last Memorial Day Weekend, when I made Henry and Chooch listen to it approx. 187 times.

I thought for sure Henry would be against this, but when he saw how reasonable the tickets were (GA standing room/floor tickets were around $40!!) he agreed. Plus, excuse to go to Toronto! (Which, in hindsight….lol.) And even Henry was pretty well-versed in KA’s discography.

After seeing the long line outside of the venue, I was convinced that we would be relegated to the very back of the theater, but I managed to immediately nab a spot in the second row from the stage, off to the side (my comfort zone, ha!). Henry stood with me long enough to take the above selfie and then resumed to wall-leaning.  He was mad because he originally had the spot next to that barricade, but when I called him over for the selfie, the guy in the brown jacket usurped his prime location. Cry about it, Henry.

Around 8pm, an announcement came on that started out with “Ladies and Gentlemen, the Danforth would like to apologize…” and immediately I thought for sure the show was canceled for some reason, but no, they were just having some minor technical difficulties and within 20 minutes of the announcement, the lights went out and we were treated with pure professional artistry for the next 90 minutes. When I say I entered this theater as a casual fan and left as a hardcore Danity (the name of his fans), I’m not exaggerating. I didn’t realize how much I needed this night, and how much I had already really loved his songs! I knew 90% of what he performed but it was next level. Henry and I both have been a DEEP Kang Daniel dive since seeing him.

The dancer to the left is the one we saw outside of the venue that I thought could have easily been mistaken for an idol, or at the very least, a chaebol villain from a k-drama!

First of all, his live vocals are incredible. His energy is palpable. And his personality is OFF THE CHARTS. His ability to carry an entire concert on his own really speaks volumes for his charisma and talent. I LOVED when he talked to us in between songs and his fan service was next level – someone held up a sign asking him to draw their next tattoo and he jumped off stage, took the paper from them, and drew a cat. WHAT A LUCKY FAN!! He also recognized someone in the crowd that he had run into the night before at a PC bang (game room) and the exchange was just…so pure.

Another thing to note about Kang Daniel is that he is wildly popular in South Korea. There is a reason that he was the top winner in the elimination show Produce 101 – he really has it all going for him. I mean, that was only like 5 or 6 years ago and he’s since gone on to cultivate a successful solo career and he’s the CEO of his own agency.

You guys. Get on the Kang Daniel train. He’s amazing.

^^^ This is the aforementioned song that I played 187 times in the car on the way to Six Flags. It just got me so hyped! I am so happy that I go to see him perform it live!

I know, no one cares about videos people record at concerts because the quality is shit but I like to get 60 second clips of my favorite songs so I can pull it up on my phone and watch when I need to relive amazing moments. I’m pretty sure the girl behind me recorded the whole entire show because at times it felt like she was actually using my head as tripod, lol. Yet somehow she wasn’t bothering me at all. No one around me bothered me. It was a chill crowd. We were there to shower Kang Daniel with love, not be assholes to one another. I couldn’t have asked for a better concert experience, sincerely.

YOU GUYS CAN YOU SPOT HENRY?? LOL it kills me that he always ends up in these concert photos but I never do. If you look all the way to the left and see the red arm in the air with the black girl next to it? I was RIGHT NEXT to her. Of fucking course I’d get cut out! That’s the theme of my life!

Speaking of Henry, here is his favorite Kang Daniel – sometimes I hear him singing it under his breath and it makes me uncomfy but even worse is when he does his weird wavy arm dance to it. Chooch flipped out the other night when he accidentally witnessed this and demanded that he never do it again lol.

I had so much adrenaline flowing by the time we walked back to the car. It was like the previous frustrations had been wiped from my memory and replaced with Kang Daniel’s sultry pipes.

Oh one more! Here is the tour’s namesake, Parade (I guess I’ll use his live performance that was filmed for Kelly Clarkson because I feel like anytime a Korean artist is on an American talk show, it immediately increases their validity (sigh)):


Mar 172023

I was so nervous about getting into line for the Kang Daniel show because we were general admission / floor and the line was already long. I’m glad we ended up eating a small meal beforehand because the energy was needed!

(Also, the font somehow keeps changing on me so please enjoy. Maybe I should also change the color as I go along too, throwback to LiveJournal circa 2001. Add a MIDI file to the background.)

The line snaked all the way down the block and was just started to round a corner by the time we reached the end. And then it proceeded to grow longer and longer as we waited for 7pm to roll on up. Everyone in line was very chill and it wouldn’t have been so bad if it hadn’t been SO FUCKING COLD. I was so unprepared, even after checking the weather before leaving Pgh, where we had been enjoying False Spring. Mary, I was wearing a denim jacket and Vans with whatever the next step up from PEDS is. I was icing over, practically. Shivering so hard that my body vibrato was visible to all who looked at me.

A gallant man, had he been my boyfriend, would have maybe wrapped one MAYBE TWO arms around me to help warm me up a bit. Not my gentleman friend! Nope nope nope, gotta stay chaste and platonic-appearing. Armspan apart. Really how did we not break up on this overnighter?!

Shortly after getting into line, a girl walked up to us and asked, “ARE YOU HERE FOR KANG DANIEL?” I said yes and she handed me a little packet of photocards. Then she asked Henry and tucked one into his hand too, I was dying lol. He never gets kpop swag!

Anyway, this was really cool because in addition to the Kang Daniel photocard that had the tour info on the back as a keepsake (this was awesome to have especially since you can’t really get physical concert tickets for most shows anymore and SOME OF US ARE PACKRATS who keep boxes of paper mementos but OK), each packet also contained a photocard of one of Kang Daniel’s dancers!

Mine was Taehee, and Henry got Kyujin who apparently was replaced on the tour with LilDae after Kyujin switched to the role of “performance director” instead. Here’s what the back of the cards said:

Isn’t that the cutest idea?? I definitely tagged Taehee in one of the reels I posted that night, lol. I love shit like this.

Meanwhile, there was a single white guy in front of us. I’ll guestimate that he was in his early 30s perhaps. Almost immediately after getting into line right before us, an Asian girl (based on context clues from their convo, I think she was Chinese) turned to him and ask, “Excuse me, can I ask you a question? So, what brought you here tonight?”

The man said that Kang Daniel was actually recommended to him on Spotify recently and he really liked what he heard. I wasn’t TRYING to spy on their convo, but they were legit right in front of me and it’s not like Henry was entertaining me at all. From what I pieced together, his wife is Korean (?? I think ??) and he is no stranger to kpop. He seemed to lean more toward the girl groups though, while his standing-in-line partner was really into older kpop and mostly boy groups. I was happy to hear her say that she didn’t care much for BTS aside from two songs (“Save Me” – same girl, and “Fake Love”) and that she only started to listen to Kang Daniel the day before, having just a bought a ticket based on the fact that she didn’t want to miss out on any concerts anymore after Covid. Valid!

I kept looking at the poeple sitting inside the Tim Horton’s next to me as a means to stop eavesdropping, but then I was just getting mad because they all looked so warm and cozy with their hot bevvies and donuts.

It was so cold, yo. Plus, Toronto had recently had a snow storm (I originally typed “stormstorm,” please book my brain a room in a detox resort ASAP) that weekend so there were random snowbanks along the sidewalk which just made it seem even colder.

I was not a fan of this.

The line still hadn’t moved after a good 30 minutes, even though it was nearly 7pm by then. The girl in front of us had dropped her Kang Daniel packet so I picked it up and handed it to her. Now she was aware of my existence.

“Excuse me, can I ask you a question?” she started and I was so excited that someone was finally talking to me! I said SURE with probably definitely way too much zeal, to which of course she asked me what brought me there.

I told her in great detail that I had been a fan of Wanna One. “Who was your top pick?” she asked, and I said, “Well, I didn’t watch Produce 101 (the elimination show that Wanna One was born from) but out of Wanna One, Kang Daniel.”

Then she started asking me all of the “Do you know….” questions and luckily I am DEEP IN THE GAME so I was able to yes to everything. She asked if I was going to be going to any other upcoming concerts and I gushed, “OMG NCT DREAM I HOPE!! IF I CAN GET A TICKET!!”

She smiled calmly and said, “Oh, you will you get your ticket, don’t worry!” AND MAYBE SHE IS THE REASON I DID – IS SHE MY KPOP GODMOTHER?? So then we talked about NCT and she asked who my top pick is for that and that’s when I realized she was saying “pick” instead of bias – I never heard that before but I liked it! It made me feel like we were talking about sports, lol.

I told her Ten is my top pick across the whole NCT universe and she exclaimed, “REALLY?” like it was shocking for some reason, but it also made me feel like she was acknowledging the fact that I actually do know my NCTshit, and also I think it’s assumed maybe that most non-Asians tend to pick Korean members as their biases, but two of my top NCT picks are Chinese and Thai.

“Do you like SHINee?” I asked her and she said yes so we started talking about them, Taemin, and SuperM, which she didn’t get to see.

“But it’s OK because Baekhyun is my top pick and I got to see him with EXO,” she said, and that made me happy for her.

Meanwhile, the white guy kept occasionally joining in too because he was interested in the fact that Henry and I came from Pittsburgh for this show. “And you like him too?” one of them asked Henry and GUESS WHAT HE SAID YES.

Then the occasional person would stop and ask our general vicinity of the line what everyone was waiting for and then would say WOW I HAVE NEVER SEEN A LINE THIS LONG FOR THIS VENUE or something else to that effect. The power of kpop, you guys. Kang Daniel probably could have managed to play a bigger venue, honestly!

Now the line was moving but I wasn’t ready to stop talking so I blurted out, “ACTUALLY, MY ALL TIME TOP PICK IS G-DRAGON!”

I fucking swear to god, this girl turned around, looked me up and down with a smirk and said, “Of course he is.”


And then she said, “But….actually, I feel sorry for you—” and yo, she didn’t even need to finish that statement because I feel sorry for me too and all BIGBANG fans out there. It is literally the most depressing fandom to be a part of.

By now, the line was moving swiftly, and we got through security quickly and without incident. When we were waiting for our turn though, a VERY ATTRACTIVE Korean guy in a super cool white satin baseball-type of jacket with cool embroidering on the back came out of the venue and was talking to a girl in Korean. I was like, “WHO IS THIS GUY, HE LOOKS LIKE HE COULD BE AN IDOL” and we found out once the show started that he was one of the dancers – I WISH I HAD GOTTEN HIS CARD, OMG HE WAS SO CUTE.

Anyway. *clears throat*

It was really nice talking to these people in line – I love kpop fans. All those other concerts I used to stand in line for and most people were either too cool for school or just total assholes that I didn’t want to talk to anyway. But people at kpop concerts are so nice. I will say that way less people in my life give me shit for liking kpop these days as they did in the beginning, but it is still so very comforting to be surrounded by all these people who share your love for Korea and its music. Just this moment alone was enough to turn the whole day around, and I knew that once we got inside, it was destined to get even better.

Mar 152023

Today was one of the least annoying days I’ve had in a bit.

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Too lazy to blog for real but I will give you a little succinct update spotlighting the two points of good news:

  1. After chooch got his MRI on Monday, the results were emailed to us and of course Henry and I were googling “how to become an orthopedic doctor in 5 minutes.” The results seemed…not great? I saw things like TEAR and DEEP FISSURE and EDEMA and other things that sounded like fancy ways to expand the syllables of OUCH. But today the surgeon called after reviewing and his explanation was basically BAD BONE BRUISE. I did not know that was a thing but I googled it and it sounds like a not great thing. But!! The upside is that he thinks it should heal on its own and recommends that Chooch continue to wear the brace for another 4 weeks and he’ll have a follow-up appointment at the end of March too. My big question for doc is WHEN CAN HE RIDE ROLLERCOASTERS AGAIN? Now? Is it now? Hmm? Did you say NOW??
  2. Tickets for the Cure’s North American tour went on sale today.
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    The verified fan thing was pretty messy but I did get us two seats and those two tickets combined still cost less than half of what I paid for one ticket to NCT Dream and even lesser than NCT 127 but let’s not talk about that. Let’s just be thankful that I got two reasonably priced tickets to see my favorite band of all time even though they said that their 2000 tour was going to be the last one and here we are, 23 years later and this will be my…7th time to see them? Don’t make me count. It’s relax-y time. Kara checked in with me today to make sure I was alive and more importantly, obtained tickets. Happy to confirm!

I told Henry I should find someone to take with me, someone who might actually propose to me. I think he said, “go ahead” which harkened back to the time I briefly dated this guy Erik and then some random guy named … Kevin? I dunno his name, I had literally just met him at a gas station and invited him over to party lol.

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Ok so Kevin asked Erik if he could have me and Erik said BE MY GUEST.

The best/worst part is that I have this on VIDEO somewhere.

I’m writing this in bed and have to go now because the man who won’t marry me is snoring and I need to lodge my knee firmly into his ass.

Ending yet another blog post apropos of nothing, we are.

Feb 032023

Billy, we got some straight up JAMS to listen to together today. During my work day, I tend to put on “retro synth” playlists on YouTube. Most of it is instrumental which is good for me because I need to con-cen-trate on what I’m doing or I will get yelled at.

Probably not, but maybe. You never know. A passive aggressive call-out, at the very least.

Anyway, I need to have background music on to block out the perpetually shrieking children next door, but if I play kpop, then I get way too into plus my ears will start subconsciously perking up every time I hear a word that I recognize and then I feel compelled to look up the lyrics to see if I was correct, and it’s just a whole thing that will deter me from the work at hand for a solid 10 or 20 or sometimes longer if I’m at that point inspired to get up and see if Give Me Five Thailand also has a cardio workout to the subject song.

See what I mean? I can’t Kpop and review engagement letters at the same time.

But synth is wonderful because it puts me in a very relaxed, comfortable zone. HOWEVER, every so often, a song with vocals will pop on that stops me dead. Here are some of the recent ones that I have been fully fucking with.

And this last one especially made me call out HENRY BRING ME MY ROLLER SKATES. It has become a sensation at work, too! Even GLENN liked it!

This is bigly inspiring me to want to have a party.

OK, it’s Friday night. An exceptionally annoying work week is officially behind me. Your girl is about to drink some wine and make a playlist for a party I will probably never actually move forward with because I am lazy and constantly distracted but at least I’ll have a sick playlist.

Jan 202023

Happy Friday. I have a lot of heaviness on my mind today so I thought instead of being a downer, I will do a Friday Five featuring songs from YouTube workout videos that….live rent-free in my head. Ugh, I can’t believe I used that. But yeah, something different! Mixin’ it up! This is also for my own selfish benefit because I am constantly having to Shazam these while working out because I can never remember!

Anyway, if you’re into FitTube then you’ll probably know some of these because all those FitTubers use the same royalty-free songs. #IYKYK

BUT SOME OF THEM ARE SO CATCHY, they should make a compilation of them called I Can’t Believe This Isn’t Top 40.

  1. We Can Be Fearless – Tomas Skyldeberg


2. Not Like Them – DJ Mayson

3. No Sugar Coated Love (Feat. Jowen) [Slct Remix] – Tape Machines

4.  One That Keeps Me – Larry Paz 

Fun fact – this is apparently the husband of Jo from GrowWithJo which is where I got most of these jams from. Her channel is good for when I need a filler workout but don’t want to get too crazy with it, and she always uses great music that keeps me engaged!

5. Perfectly Opposite – Carla the Great (Deek Cloud remix)

This was the only video I could find for this one and it’s not great, but the song is so good, and I wanted desperately to include it.

There was one that I really wanted to include but I can’t find it now in order to Shazam it and I’m tired of playing workout videos in the background while I’m non-workout working so perhaps we’ll do a part 2 someday.

OK bye bye.

Dec 282022

Kang Daniel "First Parade" World Tour 2023: Cities And Ticket Details

I treated myself (fine, and Henry) to tickets to see Kang Daniel in Toronto in March! This is by far the cheapest Kpop concert I will have ever attended – less than $100 for BOTH tickets. It’s at a small theater, and I got us general admission tickets for the floor (standing room only) after confirming with Henry that he was OK with standing, god forbid.

Granted, we now have to cough up the bucks for a hotel, gas, food, etc. since it’s in Toronto, but we both genuinely love Toronto so much and are always talking about revisiting. We actually almost planned a spontaneous weekend trip last month because Chooch wanted to eat at Doomie’s, and I was like, “Yeah, I could also go for some Doomie’s,” and just when we had Henry half on board, we realized that DOOMIE’S CLOSED. It’s only in LA now :(

I am so stoked to see Kang Daniel, though!! He was my favorite in Wanna One and I was so relieved that he was able to embark on successful solo career about their disbandment. He is truly thriving and every single comeback he’s had has been a banger.  I think my favorite is still Upside Down, though! It’s always got me hitting replay.

Henry is more of a “I know his name and that’s all” type of guy, but every time I played him another song the other night, he would go, “Oh. Yeah, I know this one, too.”

He’s just GOOD. I don’t know what else to tell you. I will say though that the first time we were in Korea, his former group Wanna One seemed to be more popular there than even BTS. There was Wanna One stuff EVERYWHERE. They were even on posters for some kind of Cheetos fried chicken, and each individual member was featured on candy bars.

This one was my favorite Kang Daniel song for quite some time. Every time I hear it, I scream to Henry, “DOESN’T IT SOUND LIIKE THAT ONE SHUDDER TO THINK SONG??” and every single time, he looks at me like I’m nuts and yells, “NO.”

I hope I’m not jinxing anything by talking about this mths in advance like I did with our 2020 Euro Coaster trip that Covid ruined. I’m just so excited to be going to a Kpop concert in a city that I love so much – I’m going to be watching YouTube videos of Toronto Vegan stuff from now until March.

Dec 032022

Oh my god, when I found out that NCT Dream was releasing a movie centered around their recent In a Dream concert, and that TWO theaters in Pittsburgh were actually going to be showing it, I bought two tickets immediately the day they went on sale. NCT Dream is the “younger brothers” to the main NCT unit, NCT127. I know, it’s confusing. SM Entertainment really does the most and their convoluted NCT conglomerate takes some time to really parse through. Basically, you can’t really be a moderate or part-time fan of NCT – you gotta be all in because there are so many moving pieces.

Anyway! I fluctuate between who I like more: NCT127 or NCT Dream. At this point, I have seen NCT127 three times (twice at KCON, and once at a full-fledged concert on their recent US tour) and I have seen NCT Drean NONE TIMES.

But I really think that they are my faves. They just make my heart so happy and I want all of the best things for them.

Watching this movie was going to have to be the next best thing to actually seeing them live.

Today was the day of the movie and I WAS FUCKING READY!!!

My Haechan pendant (designed by me, made by Henry) and a NCT lightstick necklace by the talented The Idol Collective.

My Cherry Bomb purse (this is actually NCT127) with my Renjun and Jaemin pins showing.

NCT Dream Dear Diary pin; Haechan Boom-era pin.

You guys, it didn’t occur to me until we got to the theater that I FUCKING FORGET TO WEAR MY NCT DREAM T-SHIRT. I HATE MYSELF.

“It’s going to be dark in there,” Henry reasoned. YEAH BUT…

P.S. We were only about 7 minutes away from home when Henry looked over at me and frowned because I WAS ALREADY STARTING TO CRY. Why do I have to feel so much?

“I should have brought Kleenex because I know I’m going to cry. I can’t help it! I care very deeply about NCT Dream. They’re on the same level as the cats and squirrels,” I said wailed.

Henry mumbled, “Wow. So that puts me even lower.”


The girl in front of me took a picture of this so then I had to, too Henry sighed.

I sent this to Chooch, who was at work and “sadly” had to miss the viewing festivities. “Great, now I have to sit next to him while he eats popcorn in a silent theater.” Chooch and I are very much anti-Henry’s Mouth Noises.


You guys. I thought there was no way for me to love these guys any more than I already did, but then I spent two hours with them in a theater and my heart was swelling to the point of explosion. This concert was a huge deal for them because it was at the Seoul Olympic Stadium, which is like the PREMIERE venue for artists to perform at in Seoul, it’s what they all aim for. It’s also only their SECOND concert (like, full concert of their own and not just like festivals, etc.) and the first one with Mark, who had “graduated” out of NCT Dream before they had their first concert because originally, NCT Dream wasn’t a fixed unit. It was intended to be a fluid unit with revolving members under the age of 20. So once Mark had his 20th birthday, he “graduated” out of NCT Dream. The fans did not like this one bit and demanded that SM reconsider, bring Mark back, and keep NCT Dream as a fixed unit with the original 7 members. Eventually, SM caved, put Mark back in and promised that the current lineup would be the forever-lineup.

Yeah, I was a mess at most times throughout this movie. My nose was running bigly and my stomach hurt from trying to silent-cry when I wanted so badly to big-sob. And I know you’re wondering: Henry only fell asleep once at the very end, for “like a second,” he said. To be fair, he legit likes them but will honestly fall asleep at any given opportunity. He would probably also fall asleep during a Ted Nugent biopic.

I’m glad that this was available in Pittsburgh and that I was able to go. Yes, it emotionally wrecked me but it was amazing to see so many of their songs as they performed them at their concert in Seoul. I am so proud of them and the huge crowd they drew!

Since the World Cup stuff is happening currently, I’ll end this with a video of them performing Trigger the Fever, which was the official song of the FIFA U-20 World Cup in 2017 (whatever that means) and Mark actually has a songwriting credit for this!

And here they are performing it at the soccer thing in 2017 (minus Jaemin because I think he was injured):

They were so young!!!

Afterward, Henry and I went to Angkor for some Thai food and I tried so hard to rehash the entire 2 hours but he barely had anything to say and just nodded a lot, but you know, that’s just Henry.





Oct 262022

My weird side-angled view, lol. The advantage was that we got to see NCT before anyone else though!

Ever since the NCT127 concert two weeks ago, I have been putting off writing about it because (a) I’m still riding that high and frantically searching YouTube for fan videos from the concert and (b) I don’t even know how to begin! I feel like I always start these things by saying some wishy-washy sentiment like, “It’s so hard to explain…” but you know what? No, it really isn’t so hard to explain because I bet any person reading this can relate in some way to that fucking euphoric feeling of seeing your favorite band, especially if it’s one that you don’t get to see very often or haven’t seen at all before, and then that inevitable crash of post-show depression that follows. This is what connects us! We might not agree on the band/group/etc. in question, but the feeling is the same.

So…you know exactly how I felt on this night of October 13th, 2022, and also right now as I relive it!

I am honest to god quietly crying right now (and also laughing at the fact that I’m crying!) because I love these boys so much. I want to protect them and I want all of the good things to happen to them.

I first saw NCT in 2017 at KCON NY (actually was in Newark though, at this same arena!). They were still rookies then and I only knew a little about them. At that time, I was wholly-invested in their big brothers, SHINee, as you might know! But when Chooch and I saw them on this stage that night, I was blown away. I started paying close attention to the music and MVs after that, but it wasn’t until maybe 2018 or 2019 when I also started watching their content.

If you don’t know, most Kpop groups put a TON of extra content online. YouTube is full of “comeback parties” and vlogs of their daily lives. I think what really hooked me was watching all of the vlogs that NCT127 filmed while on their last US tour in 2019. I already knew all the members by that point, but that was what solidified me as a card-carrying NCTzen (their fangroup name!). Seeing them on this stage that night, in real life, after spending the last several years obsessing over them, learning the members of ALL NCT units, hemming and hawing over who is my latest bias, and just rooting for them with my whole heart, it was a lot. It was a lot for everyone there that night, I think! The number of tears that I shed and screams that scraped my throat that night…that was also a lot.


  • Interlude: NEO Zone
  • Kick It
  • Lemonade
  • Cherry Bomb
  • Elevator (127F)
  • Dreamer
  • Love Song
  • Another World (Taeil Solo)
  • Love Sign (Taeil & Haechan duet)
  • Run Back 2 U (Jonny, Taeyong, Yuta, Jaehyun dance performance)
  • Highway to Heaven (English version)
  • Breakfast
  • VCR: Running 2 U
  • Vibration (Mark solo)
  • Moonlight (Taeyong solo)
  • The Himalayas (Mark & Taeyong rap duet)
  • VCR: Lipstick
  • Lipstick (Jungwoo solo dance)
  • Focus (with Johnny solo dance break OMFG)
  • Lost (Jaehyun solo)
  • Butterfly (Yuta solo)
  • The Rainy Night
  • White Night
  • Back 2 U (AM 01:27)
  • The Reason Why It’s Favorite (Doyoung solo)
  • Favorite (Vampire)
  • Regular (English version)
  • Love on the Floor
  • Paradise
  • Touch
  • Love Me Now
  • Sticker
  • Faster
  • 2 Baddies


  • Dreams Come True
  • Promise You

(And now I’m crying again. Cool. It’s fine. This is fine. I’m fine.)

Every single second of the night was my favorite. But if I had to choose several isolated moments:

  • HAECHAN. Literally, seeing Haechan in real life was everything. He’s my ult bias across the entire NCT universe, and it was hard for me to focus on my actual NCT127 bias (Jaehyun, who started out as my bias wrecked only to be in danger of being wrecked himself!). Haechan is just…this is so fucking lame and I’m going to sound like a grandma from the 1960s, but he is JUST SO DAZZLING. His movements, his face, his HONEY VOCALS. No one sounds like Haechan. No one. He is OOAK.

OMG this part! OK so I tried really hard to avoid videos from the LA show that happened the week before this because I didn’t want anything spoiled. So I had no idea that they did this super cute lightstick dance to “Breakfast”! I was SCREAMING.

I’m just going to put this out there, but I think Mark and Taeyong’s chemistry together as rappers is like a New Gen T.O.P. and G-Dragon. Their rap styles are so distinct that even if you aren’t a NCTzen, you can spot an NCT song by the rap line alone. Anyone who says Kpop is homogenous either isn’t paying attention or doesn’t want to accept the fact that there is a wealth of talent in South Korea and frankly, their artists are just performing at levels that Western artists can’t touch.

OK LOVE ON THE FLOOR. (And poor Taeil’s shoes preventing him from climbing up.)

This is nowhere near as incredible as it was when they performed it in Korea and Japan because the US just can’t handle those kinds of stages, I guess, lol. But this was still…yeah.

The last song before the encore was 2 Baddies and I swear it felt like the arena suffered structural damage from our maniacal screaming. THAT SONG. THAT FUCKING SONG.

After the lights came on, I reluctantly made my way out of Section 127 into the swarm of NCTzens, and found Henry creepily leaning against a wall. He immediately started whining in real time to me about his seat sitch and I was just like, “Bro-ski, I do not CARE, let me SAVOR THIS MOMENT without dropping your bitchy anvil on it.” Fuck!!

Once we got outside, Henry’s mood had totally seeped into my skin so then I was feeling mopey too but he finally realized that he was, once again, ruining my life, so he quickly swerved and said, “Hey come on, let’s go stand over there and wait for NCT to leave. I didn’t call the Uber yet.” I made him suffer for a few more minutes before finally walking over to the area near the loading zone. We found out by accident that this is where the artists leave the arena back when we saw Stray Kids, because it was taking us so long to get a ride back to the hotel that we just happened to still be standing across the street when their cavalcade of black vans pulled out.

We must have only waited for about 20 minutes, but it was chilly and drizzling. Still, it was totally worth it to stand with my fellow NCT stans in total anticipation of not being able to see anything aside from our distorted reflections in the rain-streaked tinted windows.

Yeah, it was worth it.

Henry was even nice and gave up his spot to an older lady who was so appreciative – Kpop Dads know when to take one for the team, you know?

I didn’t realize this until days later, but apparently Aespa was in the first van!

(Um OK I’m crying again, hold please. What is my problem lol.)

Oh man, what a night. I hate Newark so much but I would make (Henry make) that drive 127 more times if it meant even seeing NCT for a minute. They are so special to me, it makes me feel actually physically ill.

When we got back to the hotel, someone on our floor had Haechan peeking out from under their door and I was so jealous! I do sometimes wish that I had friends here who were into this but I guess Henry will do. And my one and only kpop friend (Veronica in LA!) and I made a pact that we WILL be attending a kpop concert together in the future. I suggested that we just go to Seoul and see NCT127 there and she did not say no, lol!

Do I regret spending $DONTMAKEMESAY.IT on a ticket? NOPE. I will never, ever regret spending money on music.

(Or vacations and amusement parks!)

At least I will die rich in experiences lol.

(Probably while lying in the fetal position on the futon Chooch throws into the corner of his basement for me because I’ll be too poor as an old retired* lady to live on my own.)

*(Or to retire.)

[DISCLAIMER: None of the YouTube videos are mine. The Flickr ones are, though.]

Oct 232022

While I was having the best time over in Section 127 with my new NCTbestie from Boston, Henry was having a very different experience in his section 210. When we parted ways, I told him to send me pictures proving that he was actually in his seat and not actually just spending the concert hiding in the bathroom or wandering the empty hallways like a predator.

He sent me a selfie right away:

LOL why does he take selfies like this?!?!? You can see that he was almost at the very very back of the arena. I think there was only one row behind him.

I guess that was his view before his night took a turn.

I was busy talking to my new friend and switching between screaming my throat raw and weeping while waving my light stick. Meanwhile, he was blowing up my phone with these whiny texts that I pointedly ignored:

But then he TAGGED me in an Instagram post?! HE WAS THAT WHINY that he had to go to these extra lengths to bring my attention to his tragic seating situation by CALLING ME OUT on social media?!

Wow. He must have been mad. Let me also be clear that this is all because I bought the ticket for him on the drive there instead of letting him wait until we got to the hotel so he could do it himself. I didn’t want to take the chance!

The ticket was only $60 (you know, BEFORE Ticketmaster added their mysterious fees that their Board probably uses to purchase human blood to sip from antique chalices) so he can’t really complain that much!!

Apparently, he moved seats twice and it didn’t matter because people kept congregating in the aisles and ok, THAT would piss me off too. I mean you have to expect that people will stand at concerts. I stood for the whole thing! (Except during the Ments and interludes where a video would play to distract us while they disappeared for wardrobe changes.) you’re excited to see your faves and you want to stand for them! It’s normal.

But Henry doesn’t want to stand at concerts. I dunno I guess I can see both sides.

The next day, he was slowly revealing more and more of his experience on the drive home. There was a married couple nearby that he immediately hated. He said they reminded him of these AWFUL people we used to know from Live Journal, Regan and Lance. They were world class assholes. They apparently became friends with other people that he hated (I think the ones who were standing) and now they have plans to go see Ateez together, and then one of them had a roommate who was on the other side of the arena but then she ended ip coming to their side and also stood in front of Henry.

The only exception to the people Henry hated was a young Korean guy and his girlfriend. The guy had classic noonchi, apparently, and asked Henry if he could see because, according to Henry, he shot ip as soon as NCT came out and never stopped singing and dancing through the whole thing while his girlfriend sat down and ate. Henry was OK with this guy.

Henry wasn’t able to see the stage at all EXCEPT for when Johnny took his shirt off and danced in a cage because his section was super Johnny-biased and this caused “a lot of movement” in the crowd so then he was able to see, lol why is this so hilarious to me?! Imagining Henry being like, “oh thank fuck – at least, of all the things happening tonight, I can see Johnny’s striptease.” Henry said his favorite part was watching Taeyong trying not to laugh.

Here is the best video I could find of this song lol:

Henry said his favorite song of the night was Highway to Heaven, which he said with no hesitation so it must be true:

Neither of those videos are mine!! I didn’t really record any full songs (except for Cherry Bomb and Back 2 U!!) and also I was sitting up in the balcony section so who wants to see those anyway.

On his bias Yuta’s solo: “I didn’t even get to see it but you can put that one in if you want.” Lol ok Kpop Dad calm down.

Henry doesn’t like that Yuta doesn’t get enough lines. “He has a nice voice!”

“I liked ‘listening’ to it, how about that? Visually, it was very unappealing. Not NCT127’s fault.” – Henry’s very informative review. And then: “I wish I knew that girl’s name.” (In reference to the MAIN SWAYING VIEW-OBSTRUCTOR  who reminded him of Regan.)

“I should have Nugent’d her.”