I was determined to recount my very first ‘real-life’ Kiss Me experience, but I seriously can’t remember everything that had happened. Too much to recount for my little brain. But even though my memory is blurred, at least I can still write about what it meant to me.
Domestic fans and international fans are two sides of the same coin. We have the same goals but we achieve them differently. For international fans, support is through virtual activity. Online communities, distribution of content, streaming, voting etc. For domestic fans, it is mostly physical activity (but they still have a fair share of voting to do); being there in person to support U-KISS at the events, live performances, etc. It must be tiring, time and money consuming. After all, who has the time and money to attend every single event? But even so, I think it’s easier to be motivated as a domestic fan than an international fan. A personal example would be, the fans out there who provides subtitles for videos for other fans. This process takes hours. After 8 hours of slaving away, you really just want to get away from the computer and look at a nice tree or something. Although your effort put in equals to several hours, you are generally only motivated through that same screen. Domestic fans have the opportunity to see U-KISS in the flesh and experience in real-time the reason why they do what they do. And today was the first day I really experienced why I was a fan of Kevin and a Kiss Me.
For the longest time, I was dedicated to spreading awareness about Kevin/U-KISS based on their talents and how hardworking they were. From other fan recounts, I knew Kevin was the nicest guy on earth…but let’s be honest, you never really know anything until you experience it for yourself. After 6-7 years, I began to feel restless. Is it really worth it? Am I wasting my time? Did those couple of thousands dollars go to waste? That’s why my exchange to Korea was not only for the mind-blowing culture experience, but also, to lamely put it, rediscover why I was a fan.
Kiss Me Day was an ‘athletic’ event where the U-KISS members each have their own team, playing against each other for prizes such as individual polaroids with your desired member, signed merchandise, etc. Upon hearing news of this event, I signed up in a half a heartbeat (despite my total lack of coordination, athletic skills, etc.). It was only until I saw my name on the list for Kevin’s team had I realised I was really going to see Kevin in front of me. Moving and all. Like, I could reach out and touch him and it wouldn’t be my computer screen (not that I caress my screen). So I was excited. For him and for the rest of U-KISS of course.
I was doing quite well for 80% of the event. Calm and collected, but still excited. I was delighted, all the expectations I had were confirmed and even exceeded. Kevin was very nice. I don’t think ‘nice’ even begins to describe how he is like, though. But ~angel sent from above~ is a tad too dramatic for me. U-KISS are all very nice. They were all very entertaining, clearly liked what they were doing (some more than others) and it was simply fantastic not to see them through a computer screen anymore. At some point of the event (guessing around 81%), I realised that the past 6-7 years I’ve spent…was actually spent on a very, very, very excellent and fantastic human being. Every single doubt I had ever come across, every thought of hesitated evaporated. And that’s when I became a god damn mess (and that never shall be disclosed publicly)…
But that’s not the point, the point is that despite the many hardships I’ve personally been through as a fan and troubled pathways we’ve walked down together…I am very proud to be a Kiss Me. Even if our name is a little cheesy and things aren’t always right, I am thrilled to know that who I am supporting is worth supporting. They are worth every single second of support, yours and mine.
So really…this long rambling is for those who ever lost their way or find yourself being pulled away by doubt, I urge you to rediscover how you got to be a fan in the first place. It’s hard to be loyal. I don’t mean you need to take a 6-month trip to Korea (I highly recommend it, one month in and I’m doing the moonwalk here), but if you just try to find your way back…you inevitably will be able see the worth of your support.