QRIMOLE – October 2021

It’s time for Qrimole!  Let’s take a look at this month’s questions for Kpopalypse!

I just wanna share that today I’ve learned about Hi High’s official remix released in Loona’s Orbit 1.0 Kit. The instrumental is like a downgrade (like how Odd Front is to Girl Front) but I love the incorporation of guitars in this! What’s your opinion on this compared to the original? Personally both are great for me!

I definitely prefer the original.  I agree that the guitars are a positive addition, and I also like how in the sparse sections I can hear some of the details that are less obvious in the original mix, but throwing away the beat periodically just doesn’t suit this song, one of the main strengths of the original is that the pace never really lets up for more than a few quick seconds, it matches the constantly ascending theme in the lyrics.

I’ve been exploring metal lately and so far I like Lovebites and Dragonforce, whom I’ve discovered through your random bass covers channel, and Iron Maiden. Basically the more fast-paced, melodic bands. A friend also recommended me this very new band called Nemophila:

I think they’re also very good. Do you have anymore band recs for a metal newbie? Ones with a mostly good discography? Thanks!

Nemophilia aren’t bad, but they sure as hell don’t have the songwriting smarts of Lovebites, who are honestly the best group in this kind of power metal style right now, anywhere in the world (and are also proof that yet again, while Japan always and forever pathetically fail at pop music, they are world class at other styles).  So if you’re looking for something else as good as Lovebites, I’m sorry but it doesn’t exist – however know that Lovebites’ sound is basically just a sonically updated and slightly more classically-influenced version of what X Japan were doing in the 80s and 90s so I’d check out some of that.

Smol rant…It is painful to see [rant deleted]

This isn’t even a question, it’s a rant.  Don’t write rants.  QRIMOLE is a place for questions, not rants.

One of the best things about Anti-Kpop Fangirl when I was writing for it is the owner would actively discourage his own authors from doing rant posts.  If anyone reading this wants a tip on writing your own blog or any other type of online content, #1 is don’t write rants.  It’s okay to have an opinion and express it – but make it funny, or make it educational, or make it different somehow.  Give your audience a reason to care other than presumed mutual dislike of thing X or whatever.

I dont know if youve been asked this but what is your general opinion on “fatphobia”. It bugs me in a way because while im against people being made fun of/discriminated for their weight im also against normalizing obesity, but the general public(or twitter) for short made it so every negative connotation with their weight turns into an issue of fatphobia which doesnt make sense to me.

I’m not completely sure what is meant by “fatphobia” in this context.  I mean, yeah, okay, “fear of fat people” obviously – but I’m not familiar with the Twitter discourse on this, beyond schoolyard bullying or an adult equivalent thereof what are we actually talking about here, I’m not sure.  Being overweight is definitely bad – no doctor is going to tell you to not lose weight if you’re heavy, because it reduces your life expectancy and makes you more vulnerable to diseases as you age.  However there are also situations where people might struggle to lose weight, i.e mental or physical health reasons.  It’s not just about how many cookies you eat, there are other factors.  Mind you, even if you do want to eat all the cookies and be a fat fuck, that’s your right anyway, you might as well go for it, just know the risks.  I guess my point is treat other people with respect… unless they’re assholes, in which case don’t.  Donald Trump was a fat fucking bastard, I’m amazed he never got all that much stick for it.  I guess fat acceptance really has come a long way.

Someone on Twitter told me that I’m not “gay enough”, and after reflecting and coming back with a more mature image that faps to Wonho and watched Heart Attack, I still did not meet required gayness standards. Oppar, how can I become gayer?

Go to the Kpopalypse itch.io and play all the gay computer games there.  You will then be +1 gay.

Not sure if you felt like this back in high school, but did you ever feel like you wanted to be mature really fast? I don’t know man, I guess I wanna be wise and know a bunch of shit while also being responsible, mature people always have that cool confident vibe that makes them seem like they got some sort of answer or enlightment, and I want that. A lot!

This is how I felt when watching Chuu’s Heart Attack (great song and great lgbt references, 10/10 would give chuu more strawberries that totally aren’t a metaphor for something Yves has)
It’s not envy but more like admiration, I be seeing these people with the right attitude to life and it makes me want to be them, you know?

Was going to make a question about self-love, but I feel like it’s such a broad and personal thing that’s specific to everyone, I’m not even sure how to formulate it aside from “can you give me some self-love tips” which sounds like any half-assed Here’s 10 Ways To Love Yourself articles
I guess I shouldn’t worry too much about it, huh? Will it come naturally to me? Are there any practical ways I can somehow “get” it? Sorry for the bad wording but yeah, the only thing I know about it is that you can’t love someone that you don’t know very well so I’ve been trying to introspect and do stuff to get a better notion of who I am, so far so good

I felt torn in high school – on the one hand I wanted to grow up quickly so I could have independence and not be in my home and school environment where I had no autonomy and constantly felt hounded by the needs and standards of others plus there was a LOT of violence at school, but on the other hand I also had fears about finding my place in the world, and being able to survive.  I worked it out in the end just by sort of fumbling my way through I guess.

You’re on the right track with the self-love stuff, just keep at it.

hello oppar once again i am here so you can tell me how to run my life, thank you
actually, ever since i started reading your blog and meditating and all that shit, my anxiety went pretty down. somehow, i learned to take it one day at a time naturally, hell, i used to have so much anxiety over climate change but now i just unplug shit and try my best to not be a wasteful person and that’s about it, i could plant some stuff ig but idrk where and cbf, but i’d do it in a blink of an eye if i had the chance

either way, i ran across this video on a channel i look every now and then for some mental health tips (although i don’t take it religiously cause there’s a lot of weird stuff, idk, doesn’t seem very reliable at all)



i know you cbf watching it all and honestly neither was i, so i’ll write down the main points of the video so you don’t have to watch some dude talk about shit for 20 mins
-> if you wanna convince people of something, don’t try debating them, instead understand their point
-> use emotional mirroring (aka if someone yells at you, you yell back at them then calm down and apologize, they’ll get confused and calm down as well… theoretically)
-> not trying to convince someone is the best way of convincing people
-> let go of judgement and treat them with respect, don’t attack people or they’ll get defensive and tell you to fuck off
-> listen to their side, then after understanding them, ask them to give you your point of view and let them do the thinking themselves about it

it all just feels… weirdly manipulative. why do we gotta be convincing everyone at all times man, can’t we disagree at some stuff, be understanding and let it go instead of trying so hard to convince people to think just like you? what if you’re wrong? in fact, what if you’re right and the other person is wrong? (not actually saying this to come off as an anti vaxxer btw, the questions i made were mostly for some other stuff. i feel that it’s fair enough to try out this whole thing to convince people to vaccinate, but… what if it translates to something more in other personal areas, y’know?)
do you feel that this advice is, somehow, inspiring manipulation and is kind of dangerous? i was fine with the understanding sides and listening, but then the emotional mirroring part came in and said “wait, we’re going to emotionally manipulate them?”
don’t get me wrong, i think it can happen in a genuine, free way, but it still feels highly manipulative, and you can easily do this on purpose on many, many situations…
but i do agree about treating people with respect and giving them some time and understanding is an overall cool thing to do. i agree with his approach in the specific anti vaxxing situation, but it can easily be translated into other situations where you MIGHT be wrong, or maybe i’m misinterpreting his point? i don’t know, it feels so one-sided (albeit it’s fine in the context because, y’know. them antivaxxers are annoying.)

the guy did say that you should never start convos with the intent of persuading people, rather just understanding them, understanding their whole logic (even if it may be wrong) and then giving them your own thoughts, kind of like : “i understand that you think a b c, but i think that d f g.

maybe i’m just really ticked off by that mirroring technique as it feels very emotionally manipulative
btw i scrolled down and saw the comments, lost a few braincells, note to myself to never check these. people really be speaking anything these days aren’t they gosh golly gee

and

I love your blog. You’ve given me a lot to think about over the years.

I’m studying to be a paralegal. A huge part of the job is being good at interviewing. Getting information out of people who may not want to give it, who are embarrassed or fearful or just uncooperative. Making them want to talk to you. I remember you mentioning some interviewing experience and techniques in an older post, maybe the Twice stalker one? Could you expand a little bit? Any resources, like books or videos you would recommend for getting better at this?

xoxo

The video that the other asker linked above, you might find that legit useful as it basically answers your question.  How he recommends dealing with anti-vaxxers, is basically how I dealt with Josh the Nayeon stalker.  He’s more or less describing my interview technique when I’m talking to someone who I disagree with.  Of course Twice fans didn’t like this, because (out of their own ignorance) they preferred either ostracision or the combative approach, but as he explains, this doesn’t work.  I didn’t give Josh respect because I thought he was a nice guy – in fact I don’t think that at all.  I gave him respect because that’s how you interview effectively, you keep your own personal morality and sense of judgement out of it, and just try to get to the facts of how the other person feels, and how they understand the world, THEN you can bring some of that stuff in.  Did I change his mind?  No, of course not – that would probably take ten or a hundred or more interviews just like this one (the black guy who mentions that he befriends KKK members and gets them to quit also mentions that it’s a slow process).  However, what I did do was open up some doorways that were closed before, so readers could see a lot more about how he really is, and if I did that a bunch more times, he would probably begin to really question himself a lot more also.

The second question you had is pretty much the same as the “self-love” question from the previous asker, and my answer is pretty much the same too.  And…

can you rate my question so i know where to improve? note that the most efficient grading system is minimum 0 maximum 10 disappointing loona comebacks.

When asking a question, learning how to be concise is a virtue.  Town still 70% painted though due to very good video content.

Have you watched Squid Game?

No.  I don’t watch Korean TV shows… or any other TV shows  I don’t even watch the ones with fappable idols in them.  I just don’t have time for shows.  I’ve heard it’s good.  News of it even got to my non-k-pop-listening brother, who told me he is going to check it out.  I told him not to read anything about it because everything I’ve read about it is completely packed to the brim with spoilers for some weird reason, it’s like the people recommending this stuff specifically don’t want others to watch it and want to save them the trouble instead.

ASMR is my best friend, is ASMR your best friend?

Never understood the appeal.  I know some people dig the “frisson” or whatever but I’d be more inclined to get that from a good song than someone drooling in my ear.

Hi Kpopalypse.

I have been feeling kind of down lately about a social instead/mishap I made in a discord server I’m in. I have asked you about advice in the past (specifically about handling a tournament organizer and a broadcaster being rude to me regarding an anime convention Super Smash Bros Ultimate tournament) and I really appreciated the help you gave me with that. You’re my Goddamn hero.

So anyways this story involves 3 famous(well I guess kind of famous, they’re not like TWICE famous or that sort of thing) female cosplayers from the same part of Asia. I’m going to call them “X” “Y” and Z” for privacy and simplicity’s sake. Anyways cosplayer Z is this super fucking cute and pretty girl who I kind of have a “celebrity crush” for, but it’s not a super serious crush because I’m already in a relationship with a great girl I’m into. I am in a discord group server for cosplayer Y, and I made a few memes in cosplayer Y’s server about cosplayer Z being attractive and all that. Cosplayer Y actually makes a joke about how cosplayer Z is her girlfriend and simps for her. So I (half jokingly) tried to issue out a challenge to cosplayer Y in a battle in Super Smash Brothers Ultimate that whoever wins earns the right to claim cosplayer Z as their “Imaginary Girlfriend”. Cosplayer Y half jokingly responds telling me to give up because she knows cosplayer Z in real life and have hung out closely with each other, thus meaning she wins the battle already and I have no chance at claiming cosplayer Z as my imaginary girlfriend.

This is where cosplayer X comes in. I am also in a discord server of cosplayer X. I wanted to sort out my feelings on not having “lost” the battle to claim cosplayer Z as my “Imaginary Gf” by memeing about it so I tried to meme about it by jokingly saying in cosplayer X’s group about how cosplayer Y kicked my ass in Super Smash brothers Ultimate super hard when I tried to challenge her about her claim that cosplayer Z was her imaginary girlfriend and that I too claimed cosplayer Z was my imaginary girlfriend. But I did so by tagging (read: directly trying to respond or mention by name) cosplayer X about asking if she was up for hearing my story and I posted a snippet of the post where cosplayer Y says cosplayer Z is her girlfriend (I found it a funny story to tell and so I wanted to tell cosplayer X kind of directly, all three cosplayers are somewhat interconnected, they all make mentions of each other in their servers from time to time).

So a moderator from cosplayer X’s discord server DMs me saying “please refrain from tagging cosplayer X in posts unless its an emergency and do not talk about *other famous cosplayers* in cosplayer X’s server/community” and that it was like how apparently people in a famous twitch streamer’s stream chat are not supposed to mention other famous streamers. Honestly, this got me feeling fucking upset and I wanted to know from you what I can do to sort out these feelings. I’ve had social mishaps and misunderstandings in the past (hence my previous question about smash brothers) but just hearing that shit from him, and getting called out really hurt my feelings. I think he didn’t mean any actual harm and just wanted to warn me about my behavior but it still really stings. So I guess the two things I needed help from you are happen to be:

1. What are some ways I can let out my frustration at the experience in a healthy manner. To be truthful, one thing that fucking douchebag piece of shit moderator said that I feel very mad at (I’m sorry about venting and calling him a piece of shit, I am sure he probably isn’t a piece of shit but I wanna be a fucking cunt for now and curse him out unnecessarily to help feel better about this) was “do try to read the room”, one of my friends who I also talked to about this mentioned that that seemed kind of out of line for him and ableist for him to have said that since not everyone is socially capable of intuitively reading the room (I am kind of socially awkward and have trouble “naturally” understanding social online cues at times) and that sometimes some people need a little extra help with that like myself. I just felt hurt and that comment just made it worse for me.

2. What is a good way to learn about these “hidden” rules about socialization in famous cosplayers discord forums? I truthfully didn’t know about them and now that I know it made me feel slightly ashamed to be in those groups but I guess, how do people naturally learn about them? The only things I know really are “dont be a creep and try to hit on or ask out the famous cosplayers” or dox them and that sort of thing. I honestly didn’t know that people are not supposed to talk about other famous cosplayers in one famous cosplayer’s forum or like people are not supposed to talk or mention about another famous twitch streamer in one twitch streamer’s chat (I never use Twitch or post on there so I honestly don’t know much about the twitch scene)

Thanks again oppar, and I just wanted to mention again that you’re my Goddamn hero.

Communication on the Internet is really difficult.  It’s easy to have misunderstandings and occasionally break the rules of some particular place or whatever.  I know I’ve upset a lot of people I didn’t mean to over the years just because I may not have understood something perfectly, or maybe I did understand but then they didn’t quite understand me either.  However it seems to come as part of a package deal with you have an online presence or any sort of online activity.  Probably almost everyone reading this has one friend that they had a falling out with over some Internet drama that probably didn’t even really need to happen at all, and probably even seemed silly because they always got along fine with that individual in person.  If you break the rules of some place, I think the best thing to do is either just apologise, or if you disagree with those rules then stop communicating and withdraw your participation.  Communities are entitled to set their own rules, and you as a user of those communities are entitled to either participate, or not.  As for your specific questions here:

1.  Something offline.  Play music.  Listen to music.  Exercise.  Go shopping.  Talk to friends.  Doesn’t really matter, but whatever it is – make it something offline.

2.  That’s their bad for not clarifying such a rule in the first place.  Personally I think they’re being a bit egotistical and perhaps envious or worried they’ll lose clicks or whatever, I think it’s kind of a bullshit rule the way you’ve explained it – but who knows maybe there are good reasons beyond just greed, I don’t know much about the world of streamers.  But I wouldn’t swell on it.  Perhaps politely suggest to them that they document that rule somewhere.

For example : this question didn’t need to be so long with so much background information in it.  I don’t really need all this detail, just enough to get a general idea.  Maybe you’ve just broken an “unwritten rule” of QRIMOLE, but then maybe not, because I do in fact answer long questions like this all the time, I would just prefer it if people could trim it down if possible, just so it doesn’t take ten years for me to compile these posts.  Maybe I need a “QRIMOLE rules” somewhere, but then I don’t want to make asking things too unfun either.  See how tricky and ambiguous these things can get?  Nobody can really blame you for not always getting it right.

Sorry, one more thing. I am from America and I also felt I had some social struggle in cosplayer X’s server because most people there were from SE Asia and there was some things that I just did not understand people saying there because they would speak in Malay like 30-40% of the time and talked about some cultural stuff I had no understanding of due to being from the US. I don’t know how much of this actually comes into play with my issue but I just wanted to give you a heads up.

That can be a factor, but even for native speakers in my own language, I find some people are just better with the written word than others.  Writing things is obviously within my comfort zone, but some people don’t really like writing that much – you can tell by the way they spell etc.

Oh sorry one last thing (Same guy who asked about the cosplayer social situation). I wanted to thank you for giving me advice on my other previous QRIMOLE question about finding a girl who liked Kpop, video games, memes and shitposts, and I actually did manage to get in a relationship with a great supportive girl who also likes Kpop and video games and is supportive of me liking memes and shitposts even though she doesn’t really seem to be all that into memes and shitposts like I am. I took your advice in mind and chose to be honest with what I like and she was honest with what she likes and I was cool with her likes even though they didn’t match 100%.

Groovy.  That’s the way to do it.  Don’t try and exactly match or you’ll never find anyone.  Just find someone who you can tolerate the tastes of!  It’s more important to get a good personality that complements your own rather than common interests.  Someone who is into you will be happy that the things you love make you happy, even if they don’t share your interests.

I’m 90% sure this topic has been discussed or asked about at some point in the past, but in case it hasn’t yet (and because I’m so curious) I thought I’d just go ahead and potentially waste your time.

Here’s the situation: [hypothetical S-Tier K-Pop agency] has kidnapped you at gunpoint and thrown you into said agency’s HQ. After waking up, you are given two options: create whatever kpoops you’d like, or perish. You are now the A&R, creative director and music producer of CNM Entertainment. You will be the figurehead of the next greatest K-Pop act from the drawing board to disbandment, or whenever you decide to call it quits on the group; but only after a couple of EPs or albums.

Everything from the creative side of music, to marketing, to financials, to merchandising, to the damn cafeteria, you have personal say over. You and your boys/girls will also be virtually immune to any controversy, as an army of the world’s finest PR and marketing personnel is ready-and-able to make all of you disappear from the average Twitter stan’s peanut-sized brain at a moment’s notice.

My question: If you were given a blank check to spear-head a K-Pop project from its very inception, free of budget, time and social constraints, what would it look like?

First thing – I’d fire the PR people.  Being immune to controversy isn’t my style, we won’t be needing them.  Then I’d reach out to Han Seo Hee and see if she wanted a music career.  Any music, any style, her choice, however I get final say on if the songs are good enough.  Also she can pick anyone else who she wants to work with and I would recruit them also, or just do something solo if she wanted.  Training amount completely up to her and whoever else is in the group, rather than having a fixed diet I would give each person a generous meal budget and Internet access to order food online.  Han Seo Hee can write all the songs, but if she didn’t want to/didn’t know how and/or we needed an outside songwriter/producer I would hire Annie.  No more than 8 hours of any kind of work per day, from any artists or staff.  Han Seo Hee can also do wardrobe, she has experience there, it’ll look great.  Choreographer can just be whoever could be fucked, if even necessary.  If I have a blank cheque financials don’t really matter either, so songwriters and performers can work out an amicable way to split the proceeds from songs.  No restrictions on personal behaviour or public statements of any kind, but if anyone is doing drugs they have to offer to share.  We will obviously put our hand up for music shows but if they involve standing around like a bitch backstage for hours just to shake hands with some “important guy” and suck their ass, then we won’t.  Merchandise will be black heavy metal style T-shirts.  Lightstick will be the one here

Yes I am aware that we would probably flop.  Blank cheque though so who gives a fuck.

The guitar and bass appear to be structurally pretty similar instruments. Why do people usually seem to play many strings at once on guitar while usually playing one note at a time more often on bass?

More than one note on the bass at once can sound muddy – the ear has trouble processing complex sounds when they’re in that lower register, it tends to all sound like a bit of a crash.  Also the wider distances and thicker strings make chords trickier.  There’s exceptions though, and some bass players are really good with chords and polyphonic playing in general.

Have a listen to this from my bass channel, where I play a song that’s entirely built on bass chords.

It works well enough, but if this was a very “busy” song with drums, guitar, vocal etc, then the sound of the bass chords would probably get lost in the mix.

i talked to an acquaintance once and because they’re j-nerd shit they talked about how they really like a male cross dressing character that is also very underage (like 12), and has a shit ton of dog whistle pics of them on his phone. when we next talked i semi-jokingly brought up that it seems kind of creepy he had them, but he responded with “they’re a cartoon character, not a real person” and i didn’t bother responding. do you have any opinion on whether he was in the wrong for liking animated lolita/shota bullshit, or should i just accept that a shit ton of weebs are naturally creepy and i should just move on?

I don’t know anything about this person so I don’t know how much of it is really sexual or whatever.  I don’t really care to be honest.  Yes that shit is creepy and I don’t want any part of it, but on the other hand I don’t think it’s harmful.  The issue with people like that is when they put real people in danger, if all creepy weeb pedos ever did was make and collect lame comic drawings and keep it to themselves then they wouldn’t be such a problem.

Do you think Rick Astley’s “Never Gonna Give You Up” is a good song?

Not really.  I like the rhythmic base of it, but I think it has exceptionally weak melody writing.  The verse melody just goes all over the place, and I’m not sure why they picked those particular chorus notes for the hook.  I hated Rick Astley’s music back in the day.  When Orange Caramel did a much better version of exactly the same idea, I fell in love, I was like “wow, this type of music CAN be good when the songwriters know how to write”.

Why do people keep asking about Jpop? You have neither the time nor the interest for it, so they’re just wasting their time.

On to my actual question: what’s your favorite Jpop song? ;p
In all seriousness, do you think money, on average, makes songs higher quality? Kpop is far more lucrative than Jpop at the moment, so it would make sense why the former has much higher quality songwriting. We also have the example of nugus who almost universally have very poor songs, causing a vicious cycle where their lack of popularity means they have no money to make good songs and create an appealing image but their lack of good songs and an appealing image means they cannot become popular. Off the top of my head, Gfriend comes to mind as a group whose songs improved drastically once they had some money from the mild success of Glass Bead, which was pretty much a bad clone of Into the New World. Of course, money doesn’t guarantee good songs, and we only need to look at the current girl crush trend to see this. Those productions are among the highest quality we’ve seen so far, but the songs are almost all completely atrocious. Gfriend especially suffered from this since their objectively worst songs were when they followed trends.

This song is as good as j-pop has ever gotten.  If it was in a k-pop list it would probably rate an honourable mention – at most.

Producing a hit song, just on a mechanical level, isn’t all that expensive these days – most people can afford it with the cheaply available modern technology, it’s not so far out of reach even for nugus (which might be one reason why more recent top 30 lists I’ve done have had higher amounts of nugu content, there’s nothing physically stopping a k-pop nugu from sonically matching A-list content these days).  The real difference comes in skills – hiring someone who knows how to use the tools available to get a good result.  Having more money at your disposal means you can hire a songwriter/producer with a good track record and a reputation of hits.  This doesn’t guarantee a good song, but it does make one mathematically a bit more likely.

When you say you hate Kpop does this include acts like Perfume?

Apart from that one song, yes they are basically shit.  J-pop – such a fail.  Perfume should do heavy metal or something, they’d be better at it.

Hei
How are you?
Do you know of any tips that could help a person find a passion in life?
I know you found music early, but I’m thinking you may know of some people who realized that they are passionate about something later in life, or maybe you found another passion later too. Is there anything that can help with this?
The idea is that I’ve felt passion before in my life with dancing (gave up due to financial reasons), architecture (went to study it in high school, almost got depression lol). I’m not sad or anything like this, mentally I’m really stable so it’s not a case of being unmotivated to live.
Just curious if maybe I can do something about this, not just wait for a time passion falls on my head boom, if it even chooses to.
Thanks in advance! Tell your cat I love it

Well I didn’t find k-pop specifically for a while.  I wasn’t into it back in H.O.T days.

I think if you want to find something you love, you just need to explore.  People discover things that they didn’t know about before because they just never knew it was out there, or just never tried it.  Just keep broadening your horizons and trying to experience new things, and at some point, something will probably grab you.

Coldfusion recently released a video called Exploring AI Music, and it’s somewhat of a follow-up to a previous video on AI creativity generally. What do you think about the prospects of AI creating music? The technology right now is obviously rough and the music produced sometimes absurd to our human sensibilities, but as with all things AI, this will only improve with more training and time to improve the code. Do you think AI can truly create music that is on par with or surpasses human-created music?

Well they might be able to surpass some human-created music!  Nothing I’ve heard from an AI I’ve really liked, but I haven’t hated any of it as much as some of the Kpopalypse worst-list songs.  AI music mostly does tend to be really bland though, good songs tend to have a bit of an unusual spark to them even if they are working within a generic format.  AI is very good at certain types of tasks, but it’s very bad at “ideas” and even commercial pop music is still very much an “ideas game”.

you have connections with kpop insider in particular can you hint a group that should be avoided at all costs (I do have a hunch you will say to avoid all groups lol)

I don’t know what you mean by this.  Avoid how exactly?  Avoid their music?  Avoid meeting them?  Avoid their fandom?  I mean, obviously BTS is the answer, I’m just not sure what the question is.

between t-ara vs fx whose discography do you prefer more

It’s about even.  Both generally really good.  Both kind of fell off a bit with quality right towards the very end – T-ara’s “What’s My Name” was weak and f(x) after Sulli was a non-event.

Hello, I wanted to ask what is the name of the instrument that looks like a cello in jazz what other instruments are prominent in jazz genre? I recently saw a video where classical music wrong notes annoy the audience but jazz wrong notes are genius is jazz all about impromptu which jazz songs are your favourite and in kpop do you have any particular favourites

You’re thinking of the double bass.

Your other jazz questions answered here.

What is the best chord and why is it the perfect fourth?

Strictly speaking, a perfect fourth is an interval, not a chord.  But if you want to know why a perfect fourth can be used effectively as a chord, check here.

Hi! I’ve been working on a song recently that includes a lot of keyboard riffs that drive it, and the vocal melody takes more of a backseat. Looking at your audio mixing post helped me mix everything else into its proper place, which I thank you for, but for the life of me I can’t figure out where to place the keyboard riffs so they don’t sound like they’re either directly competing with the vocals, or are way too muddy and pushed back in the mix on my stupid DAW. Do you have any advice on where exactly I should place the riffs or resolve this issue? Thank you!

Treat keyboards like guitars, pan them off to the side.  I would actually record the keyboard part twice, don’t copy-paste the one you have, actually record the entire part again so there are two completely separate (mono or stereo) keyboard parts in the mix, the one you had before, and the new one.  Then pan one part hard left, the other hard right (or just a little bit back from 100% hard left/right, but definitely “more hard left/right than central”).  Then put your vocals in the center.

Oppar, is post-punk really a genre? Thanks.

Answered here.

Hello kpopalypse oppar! I hope you, your partner & and your cat are all fine.

So I’m stuck in a situation that I actually CAN do something about, but mentally I’m just unable to.

A bit of background for context – I was born in the United States & lived there till I was 16, when my father requested a transfer to our country of origin in Asia so he could be closer to my sick grandmother.

We moved next door to my grandmother & extended family, and they are VERY conservative – like, 1500s-level conservative – and I saw my fairly liberal parents’ mentalities become heavily influenced by them almost overnight. My parents raised me to be meek and obedient, so 90% of the time I just ended up giving in to whatever nonsense they told me to do, even if I ended up hating it.

Anyway, last year I was finally able to break free from them when I got into an American university for my PhD. So now here I am, in what is technically my home country, alone & finally able to live my life – or so I thought!

Apparently my parents are so worried about me getting “ruined” by “American influences” and were so panicked over another cousin of mine marrying at the old hag age of 29 that they’ve begun looking for matches for me to marry back in the motherland.

I really don’t have the words to describe the anger this makes me feel. I just feel so helpless – me topping my class and doing a highly specialized PhD, with potential for a great salary down the line, is worthless to them because I don’t want to tether myself to a man just yet. Was I raised to be nothing but a brood mare in the end?

Now many people have told me to just cut them off & not answer their calls since they don’t live with me & in America I have way more legal options (I’m a citizen and they aren’t)……my problem is I just CAN’T do it. Every time I pick up the phone to block their numbers I think of all the good things they did for me & all that sentimental crap. I haven’t really said no to them in my life ever, and I just can’t summon the courage to protest beyond childish tantrums at this point.

You’re the king of not giving a fuck so i thought I’d ask you this. How do I train myself to start pushing back and stop giving a fuck about my parents’ bullshit? I want to keep my head down and earn a PhD without parental nonsense getting in the way please.

I wouldn’t cut them off.  However this problem solves itself because anyone they suggest, you can just say “well, no – he’s not my type” and they don’t really have a comeback for that.  As you point out – you have the power.  So any decision you make, ultimately they have to accept it.  A gracious “thanks but no thanks” each time they bring it up is all you need to offer, there’s no need to do a big confrontation or go into any details.  Will they change?  Probably not, at least not while they’re over there, so I think rather than trying to fight a big battle, just do what you want and don’t waste your energy trying to influence what you can’t (just as they shouldn’t).

Can you rank the Power Rangers theme songs? OR Can you rank theme songs from your favorite shows?

I’ve never watched Power Rangers or heard any of their songs, and I don’t watch enough TV generally speaking to even be able to remember how most theme songs go.  Off the top of my head Pokemon would be the winner!

What do Youtube think of this article Kpopalypse oppar

He could be you in another dimension where you absolutely despiste kpop

A lot of people have compared my writing to Buckley’s videos in the past.  I guess in some ways the humour style is similar, but I think the tone is completely different.  I think a large part of the reason why so many people (especially in the US in particular) wildly misread and misinterpret the intention and tone of my own writing is because they read it in his voice.  Which is completely understandable, but incorrect.

I asked you a couple of months ago about Hong Kong since my cousin and the rest of my family really wanted to leave. Well, it’s a couple of months later now, and unfortunately, it seems my cousin has no chance of immigrating to Australia, his primary choice. I believe the requirements are too stringent and the amount of available slots too few for him to have any real chance at all. Thanks for you help regardless. Now, he’s hoping that he can immigrate to Canada or the US as a prospective PhD student.

I’m sorry that this isn’t much of a question. China’s getting increasingly belligerent, and I fear for my family members’ lives more and more every day. The situation in HK’s just getting worse and worse, and it feels like the world’s just either forgotten or kowtowing to China. Companies like Google are just giving up people’s data, essentially sending those people to their deaths for profit, and there’s nothing I can do about it. It all feels so futile and hopeless.

It’s hard to get into Australia.  The requirements are steep and the current government here is trash and not big on any kind of empathy for people overseas.  I hope it works out for you.  I would advise anyone to get out of Hong Kong any way they can, it’s not going to improve over there in the short or medium term.

Monsta X’s IM recently took part in a program where he had short chat segments with seniors and juniors in the entertainment industry. No-one warned him that there would also be a fan there. She seemed nice and normal at first and then it got very awkward when she said things like “I think about you 24 hours a day”. I found that super creepy and I wished she’d said something like “I really liked the lyrics on song XYZ on your solo album” instead. Anyway it got me curious: have you ever attended a fan meeting? If so, what kind of questions did you ask?

I’ve never attended one as a fan, but I’ve attended one as a performer!  I find them legitimately super-awkward.  On one hand I really respect people who like whatever I’m being paid to do, but I never quite know what to say to them in person besides “thanks”, IM’s awkwardness dealing with the fan here is something I find very relatable.

Hey Kpopalypse!
I wanted to ask you how I should stop being envious of other people. I am a 20 years old with no significant achievements, and I keep on feeling envious of other people (friends/acquaintances) when they achieve something. I don’t want to feel this way, but just seeing other people succeeding makes me feel bad about myself who hasn’t achieved anything significant at all. Just recently, my friend got into a top engineering college while I study economics at a mediocre college and I can’t stop myself from feeling envious of her. I feel like a failure when I see my friends doing better than me, and more so because I am not really good at anything. It has gotten to the point where I don’t socialize much with other people and try to remain in my bubble so that I don’t feel hurt from other people judging me or envious from hearing about the success of others. I don’t feel like trying to strive towards anything because I see that everyone is miles ahead of me. I just feel that I am going in the wrong direction by having this kind of mindset but I can’t stop myself from thinking like this. I wanted to ask you what I should do to get into the right mindset?
Thank you

I’ve been working out ever since COVID hit, and as an older guy who has never done that type of thing before, and has a body which has immune disorders plus decades of neglect before I started doing this, I know I’m never going to look like Wonho, you know?  My gym is inner city and frequented by a lot of people who are professionally fit, like pro bodybuilders, football players, competitive martial artists, firefighters, etc, everybody there looks fantastic.  I’m the least-fit person at the gym nearly every single time I’m there.  However what I say to myself is “they’re on their journey, I’m on mine” and I just focus on doing the best I can, each time I’m there, I don’t worry about where others are at or try to compete with them, because what I’m doing is all about myself, others don’t matter, they are in another universe that doesn’t concern me.  Just like I’d rather lift the weight that is right for me and that I know I can handle before gradually moving onto the next step, if I were studying I’d rather smash a super high score in a mediocre class, than just perform okayish in an excellent class.  I don’t know what they think when they look at me, but it doesn’t matter.  I’m just here to do what I do as well as I can do it.

I absolutely love pporappipam by Sunmi, and it seems like you do, too. I remember reading your post about your Top 30 picks for 2020, and at first, I thought the “tinkly angel noise” you were referring to was the guitar in the chorus. Listening to it again, I realize now what you actually meant by the tinkly angel noise, and damn, it sounds good now that I can hear it. Did you ever figure out what produces that sound?

As for my real question, the guitar in the chorus of pporappipam is just absolutely phenomenal, adding a subtle yet distinct layer all the beautiful, intertwining countermelodies present all throughout the chorus. How do guitarists achieve this kind of sound? It’s very light and pizzicato-like (coming from a background of violin and cello, but I realize “pizzicato-like” is a stupid word to describe guitar technique because it’s not like you can bow a guitar). Is the guitar just playing a non-stop arpeggiation of some specific chords? What techniques are used to make the guitar sound so ethereal and subtle in pporappipam versus the heavy, profound guitar sound in (for example) Dreamcatcher’s Endless Night?

Most keyboard workstations, even the cheap ones, have several variations of the “tinkly angel noise” sound I’m talking about that are usually called “bell” or “chime” or “angel” or somesuch nonsense.  The staccato guitar playing is achieved through palm-muting technique, but it’s a clean sound rather than distorted.  Most guitar players when they think of palm-mute think of chugging away at power chords Metallica style, but this same technique can also be used to palm-mute lead lines as well as individual notes in a chord or countermelodies and that’s what’s going on in Sunmi’s song.

Since so much of audiophile hearsay is pseudoscience, is there anything that a total novice should get to better listen to music that you recommend? On that topic, what kind of gear do you use to listen to music? I know I can’t possibly get the same stuff a professional like you would use nor would I adequately appreciate music to make that worth it, but it’d be nice to have a reference.

If you’re just listening to music, seriously, just get something reasonably priced that sounds cool.  As long as you’re not listening to music through laptop or phone speakers, but have got something that can reproduce a bit of low frequency, anything is good.  At home I listen through cheap Logitech computer speakers that are just two speakers plus a subwoofer, I think it cost me $100 or maybe less (Z443 if you want to look it up), and honestly that type of setup will do most people fine.  I do not recommend spending megabucks on an amazing stereo system that might increase the fidelity of your music 10% for 2000% of the cost.  Like with buying computers, or guitars, there’s a sweet spot where you’re actually paying more for a better sound and once you get past that point you’re pretty much just paying for bling and brand reputation.  There’s no need for me to recommend specific systems – trust your ears.  Just be aware that hi-fi shops that sell audio gear have pretty different acoustics to your lounge room or bedroom, so a system that sounds great in the shop might sound a little different when you get it home.

Hi oppar, an update on the person who was freaking out about the age gap relationship between one of my family members. So i think it is in fact some kind of money-based relationship, the old rich guy she is dating is 1) married to someone and also 2) has other girlfriends than her. She has a good job so I think it’s about being to afford more luxury goods.

I see what you mean about age gaps being fine though and I think I’ve come to accept that as well. Although, now I think this whole situation is none of my business and I’m just gonna stay out of it

Yeah that seems like some dodgy shit – but the age gap itself isn’t the issue.  Age gaps aren’t a bad thing in themselves, but they can sometimes be an indicator of other things which could be a red flag.  So it’s right to be wary (as one should be in any relationship situation), just don’t be immediately dismissive.  At the end of the day it’s someone else’s thing so it’s their choice.

Greetings –
Assuming that physical CD album sales are still relevant, why is it so rare for any K-pop group\company to release a greatest hits album or box set compilation?
For the current\popular\contract-vested acts it seems an obvious financial measure to constantly cultivate a fan base.
For the dearly disbanded, it serves as a celebratory gesture and an act of closure.
I would hope the company that owns the rights to the GFriend (or any other future-disbanded group) catalog would have something in the works for a career retrospective. If not for financial reasons, then at least out of respect to the fans and to acknowledge the group’s accomplishments.

I think they’re so incredibly focused on the latest and newest thing and the hyper-competitiveness of it all.  Companies are always so busy preparing for the next big comeback etc that they forget all about this aspect… and then when the group dies, they don’t care because the focus is again on upcoming projects  One of the areas where Korean industry could learn from the west in terms of marketing.  I would buy a T-ara, f(x) or Gfriend “Greatest Hits” album in an instant, as I’m sure many others would.

Hi, there is a photo circulating in my country about a band looking for a medicore drummer, he can’t be awesome but at the same time can’t be awful and has to play without being pretentious and just for fun. For you why a band would look for someone who’s not great? A great drummer is bad for creativity?

I know what they’re getting at.  This video might help explain it.

It applies to any instrument.  This is what I’ve always talking about with vocalists who improvise too much – they’re serving themself, not the music.

hello kpopalypse! my question relates to the chorus of this stray kids b-side – i’ve asked around and everybody finds the part at 1:21 VERY familiar, but no one is quite sure which song exactly. i know a lot of pop songs in general are similar, especially with the style of early 2010s one direction music like this one and its very generic chord progression, but do you recognise it?

No.  I agree it sounds familiar though.  In pop songs there’s only a finite amount of progressions that work, so it’s common to hear familiar elements all of the time.

What do you think about prostitution? should it be legal?

Although I’ve never done it, I don’t see anything implicitly wrong with paying for sex.  I’ve paid for worse things!  Yes it should be legal.  The kind of exploitative situations that tend to happen involving prostitution tend to happen more often if prostitution is criminalised.  If you criminalise something, you attract criminals to it who don’t give a fuck and will just do anything to make a dollar.  On the other hand if you legalise something, it can be regulated and workers can have legislation and controls protecting their interests.

Hello! Last month’s question about audiophiles reminded me of a time several years ago where I wanted to buy good headphones and your advice (you recommended the Sennheiser HD 202 which are standard equipment for audio engineers) saved me from following audiophile forums advice and wasting cash on more expensive headphones that wouldn’t have made a very noticeable difference anyways. You also taught me that the “loudness wars” are mostly bullshit and that audio mixing has gotten more quiet than before. I do want to ask several questions though:

1. Are audiophiles correct about anything at all?

2. Does music sound better in speakers instead of headphones like they say? What way is better? Am I going to become deaf at 50 years old for only using headphones?

2.2 Any advice to take care of one’s hearing and preventing hearing loss?

2.5 Are in-ear earbuds/earphones (the ones with that rubber thing) better than regular earphones (the ones that are flat and don’t have that rubber thing)? Why did that model become so widespread? wouldn’t having the earbud speaker getting all up inside your ear make you deaf even faster? finding regular earphones is near impossible nowadays

3. I know that the difference between 320 kbps mp3 files and FLAC files isn’t noticeable in many types of music because of good mixing (and because most computers have cheap sound cards so you need a fancy and expensive external one to actually process the audio data or something), but is there any genre or album where lossless files come in handy? is kpop included?

3.5 Actually I want to ask what exactly are FLAC files and how useful they are, specially in kpop

4. Are those FiiO audiophile music players really that good or can I get the same result by plugging my headphones into my phone and adjusting the equalizer a bit?

5. Should I even need to use an equalizer or not? The ~experts~ say that it should always be left as a straight line but everything sounds flat as fuck, to which the same experts reply it’s because I don’t have super exclusive audiophile gear anyways

6. Final question, sorry in advance for linking a j-song but I swear it’s relevant: When this album (here’s one song from it) came out some people said it had terrible mixing and that everything was “brickwalled” what did they mean by that? This song does stand out whenever I put my music player on shuffle because it’s louder and it has a more metallic, treble-y sound but is that bad mixing or not? it sounds perfect in a car stereo.

Btw when the same artist released a compilation of some of her old hits the same people said it was mixed badly too and they’d show screencaps of the audio spectrum in audacity comparing a rip of the original release and this new re-mixed version showing that it was mostly “full”, again what does that mean?

That’s it for now, once again thanks for your priceless, no-bullshit always straight to the point advice, and I hope you’re healthy and safe!

1. Audiophiles are often correct that there is a difference in sound between better gear and not so good gear.  The technical aspect of the analysis, they often get that 100% correct.  However, what they’re often talking about is a measurable difference in sound rather than an audible difference in sound, they often don’t realise that due to physiological and psychoacoustic factors, an objective difference in sound quality that can be measured with computers may not always ‘present’ to the ear.  Because audiophiles are fucking egg-head nerds who fetishise gear, they focus on the tech and ignore the human element.

2. I personally just enjoy the experience of speakers a lot more.  I also think it’s a lot easier to damage your hearing with headphones.  It’s not impossible with speakers mind you, but you have to crank speakers pretty loud to get to the same dangerous levels that headphones can achieve easily.  There’s an awareness when you crank speakers “yes I’m really blasting this music out” because you can feel self-conscious about it (and your parents/neighbours/roommtes complain) but with headphones, people often don’t realise how loud they’re turning up the volume because nobody is telling them.

2.2 If you go to concerts more than twice a year, or play in a band – wear earplugs or hearing protection of some kind, every time.  You will thank yourself in 25 years when all your friends are partially deaf.  I’ve played in bands for decades and apart from a slight hearing notch at 6k (which is probably “crash cymbal range”) my ears are pretty much average for someone my age – several musicians I know are far more damaged than this!

2.5 The best kind of headphones are ones that are “closed” simply because they don’t allow outside noises in quite as easily.  However of course there are times when you DO want to hear outside noises as well so it just depends on purpose.

3. Classical, mainly.  No.

3.5 Explanation of FLAC here.  FLAC will sound better than a lower-quality MP3 but it won’t sound significantly better or worse than 320 kbps MP3, 44.1 KHz CD, etc, certainly not for pop music.  Where compressed formats like MP3s struggle more is with genres like classical where the dynamic range is much higher (because the compression isn’t always best at deciding what information to remove), but FLAC still won’t be an improvement on CD here.

4. It’s the quality of the file you’re playing, and the quality of the speakers, which makes the difference, much more so the quality of the MP3 player etc.  Yes an absolute top of the line playback device will probably sound better than the most absolutely bargain basement crap, but there’s quite a large sweet spot in the middle where nobody can tell the difference between any playback devices in blind listening.  The benefits of better playback devices usually aren’t better sound, but more features, better design, higher quality electronic components that won’t fail as easily etc.

5. If you’re going to buy an equaliser just to keep it completely flat, you may as well not buy an equaliser and get the same effect!  Audiophiles are legit nuts.  The entire point of an equaliser in a home stereo context is to colour the signal to your taste.  There ARE applications of equalisation where you should keep it flat as a reference (music theory series will cover) but they don’t apply to home listening for enjoyment.  If you have an equaliser, adjust your music so it sounds cool!  But if you don’t, don’t worry as most playback systems these days have some form of colourisation or equalisation anyway.  Those “beats by Dre” headphones are really just headphones with fancy equalisers built in that are pre-adjusted to sound really good for hip-hop, for example.

6. “Brickwalled” means that the frequency graph looks kind of like a wall because everything is maximised or equally loud, the old “war on loudness” stuff.  Looks like when they remixed the old Sheena Ringo tracks more compression was added to make it louder so it wouldn’t sound “soft” when played up against more modern tracks, this is a common practice when remastering older pop music.  Nothing really wrong with that by the way, if it’s the type of music that suits this.  Pop music in general has a very low dynamic range so a compressed mix does more good than harm.  Brickwalling is only a concern when we’re talking styles of music where the players ride the dynamics a lot more (jazz, classical, sometimes artsier rock bands), for commercial pop and rock music you might as well brickwall the shit out of it.  The “war on loudness” is a real thing, but it’s not one-size fits all across all genres.  This is something I might discuss more later.

Do you ever think it’s possible for a kpop group to have TOO many members?
When I think of Loona or Iz*one I think “Damn that’s pretty crazy. No wonder they don’t all get an equal amount of lines”. And then I Remember there’s groups work EVEN MORE than that. Like NCT for example. They have 20 I think.

I think the only real problem with having a lot of members is that if these groups ever make any money, that money then has to be divided between more people.  I’m not just talking about the group themselves, a bigger group also needs more support staff, more facilities, etc.

Hey oppar, still waiting for you to comeback to LoL.

Anyways, I feel like an outcast these days in my LGBT community. And no, I’m not in my angsty teenage years (28 this year). I disagree with my LGBT friends a lot up to the point where someone might see me as being a troll contrarian. I know you’re str8, just wanna know what you think because you’re pretty level headed.

Here are some of the things I disagree about:
1. The whole non binary thing to me is absolute nonsense. It’s a bunch of snowflakes that were the emos in high school that hasnt grown up yet and now demanding some attention and affirmation because they’re so insecure. The LGBT community is a bunch of wimpy pushovers that let these people get traction in the name of ‘inclusivity’, which leads to my second big qualm,

2. Why is (my) LGBT community so soaked up in the whole proud and inclusive thing? I was in a cafe with 3 other member of community one day. They were at one point conversing bed talks and getting really gross and uncomfortable for me. I told them to lower down their voice and not talk so loud, because literally there was like 2-3 people within arm’s reach that could CLEARLY hear us. All 3 turn on me saying that why should they be embarassed? They should be proud of it. I was really baffled and felt like the crazy one there. I didn’t say anything, but in my mind no one wants to hear people’s bed talks, it’s freaking trashy. I appreciate if it’s a joke, but it’s just straight up descriptive bed talk. I just don’t get why do you have to take ‘pride’ to such bullshit level. Being proud and comfortable of yourself and being trashy are two different things.

3. This last one is probably my fault. But I cannot stand overly feminine guys. As someone that’s gay myself I should be very understanding of this. However, they will always attract attention and I hate how they always stand out whenever they act very feminine. I used to be feminine myself and look back at those days with embarrassment.

4. This is outside LGBT community and more general, it feels like I am quite quick to read/judge people after I spend some time with them. As in it takes me only like maybe half an hour of hanging out or so to know that I don’t like someone. It really feels like I am the only one doing this and I am perhaps very judgemental/unforgiving. My predictions are usually accurate and I tried hanging out more with guys that gave me a bad first impression and it usually gets worse if anything. Thoughts? Is this something you also do?

World finals in LoL is happening soon so I’ll be coming back a little just to follow that and maybe play some ARAM while I wait for games to spectate.  I still quite enjoy watching LoL even if the game has changed so much in favour of fast-reflex play, overloaded kits and hyper-mobility that I can’t really play it anymore.

1. Non-binary is definitely a real thing, I’ve met enough people like this to know!  Yes some people can wave it around annoyingly, or use it in the place of actual logic in a discussion, but there’s just as many who are reasonable about it and just do their best to get on with their non-binary lives.  It’s just that because the non-annoying ones aren’t saying anything, you tend to not notice them.  What you might not realise is that a lot of the quieter non-binary people really resent the ones who use it as a card to play in arguments etc, because they’re aware that the stigma will carry down to them.  So don’t judge the many by the actions of a few loudmouths.  It’s not a non-binary problem, it’s a human problem.

2. I agree, I’m heterosexual but I don’t have graphic conversations with people about what I do in the bedroom, I assume that nobody wants to know that.  I guess if they do display an interest, that might change things hahaha.  Or if I want to annoy them or make them feel uncomfortable on purpose for some reason.  Maybe those gay guys were just fucking with you on purpose.

3. Yeah that’s just your personal disposition, you just need to build a bridge and get over that one.  It takes all types to make this world.  Be more tolerant.

4. I think everybody does this, and I don’t think it’s a bad thing.  A spider-sense of who is cool and who isn’t is very valuable.  Just don’t assume that you’re always right in your assessment, because sometimes people can surprise you.

What do you think about alcohol, kpopalypse god oppar?

I don’t drink.  I’m not against it, but I don’t like being around it.  I know a lot of people who drink a lot (I’m Australian after all), and being around drunk people is super-tiresome. 

What do you think about ‘Straya’s new found totalitarianism, err COVID restrictions? Is it affecting you in any way?

I think it’s great.  Yeah the effect on the economy and on me personally has sucked (my industry was the very first to get killed off, literally overnight) but the restrictions have also saved a shitload of people from dying.  People here who are complaining (which is a minority) don’t understand how fucking lucky we are to not have huge waves of COVID here.  When we do open things up soon, it’s going to get nasty as fuck, and not just for the people actually getting COVID.  Heart attack or stroke, need urgent medical assistance?  Sorry, wait three hours for an ambulance and then another half a day in line behind all the COVID patients.  Got cancer, need treatments?  Sorry we’re full with COVID patients and even if we had a bed nobody could look after you anyway, our doctors and nurses are all working 18-hour shifts 7 days a week, literally working themselves to death.  Want elective surgery?  Join the waiting list, maybe by 2027 you can have that back surgery or whatever.  But some people don’t care about this because they can’t see the effects happening in front of them, in real time, so they think it’s not real or it doesn’t matter… until they pay the piper of course.

oppar, are there any kpop songs like this?

This linked to a Spotify and I don’t have Spotify so I couldn’t play the song.  But are there kpop songs on Spotify?  I believe so, haven’t checked… because I don’t have Spotify.

How insane is it that china banned effeminate men on tv. I mean I assume your answer is something paraphrasing “very” because wtf but wtf. I’m not excessively surprised because they’re them but still!

China ban a lot of things, but they still happen.  They ban cryptocurrency twice per week but people still mine it over there.  China just likes to say that they ban stuff, I think the on-the-ground reality of what goes on there is a little different.

Hey oppar
In a couple of weeks -from the time I’m writing this- uni will start again. I’m excited but also a little scared. This has to do with the following:

1) The upcoming academic year, I get to be the local director of my student organization. It’s not a sorority/fraternity thing, but an international one that connects students with similar interest. Because of legal statutes, the local committee is part of the student organization associated with my major (I don’t know how if that exists in anglophone countries). This means I’m part of the “praesidium” and have to attend weekly meetings. I also represent (international) students from my major in the student education committee of my major’s department – which gathers once a month. There is another committee where I represent students as well, but they only meet once in a blue moon. Did I mention that my local committee (as in the actual student organization that I’m the local director of) has bi-weekly meetings?
The more I think about it, the more I feel that I will barely have any time left to organize & participate in activities. There is a vice director. The sole purpose of that position is to have stuff delegated to.
* How do I delegate things? I’ve never been in a position that required that. Group projects don’t count imo since everyone ends up bearing responsibility. That’s not the case here. There are legal liabilities involved.
* If you’re experienced with attending lots of meetings, please give advice. I think I need it.

2) Also, upcoming year I have to choose a set of electives. Those options are basically the minors that exist in the Master degrees. I still doubt between two of them. I will probably choose impulsively since that what I ended up doing when choosing my major (which I haven’t regretted). My parents strongly dislike my indecisiveness and often say “not choosing is also a choice”. Are they right? Personally, I think it’s better to take my time and make a decision of my own. It’s not like I’m considering the major all my friends chose in which I’m not interested; I would never join a class / group/ hobby … because my friends do.

Greetings from a random caonima

P.S.: to introverts going to college or university, look into a student group based on your interests. You’d be surprised how different they can be from the stereotypical fraternity/sorority. If you don’t want to join, that’s fine. Never force yourself to go to social gatherings if you don’t feel comfortable to. Just know these groups exist and that they can possibly be your safety net.

Delegation is easy, it’s just giving someone a task to do.  “Can you please do this part of the thing”.  If you think you’ll be too busy just delegate stuff to others.  You’ve got a vice-director so use them to do your work!  It’ll make you less busy and make them feel important!

Meetings: take notes, preferably in a book that you bring to all meetings.  However get someone else to take the official meeting minutes, that can be your first job, delegate a minute-taker.  Try not to fall asleep.  That’s really about it.

Not choosing isn’t a choice if you do ultimately intend to choose.  Not choosing is only a choice if you never choose.

Hello kpopalypse, hope you’re in good health! i have a question for you. I just found out that NCT’s Johnny, actually only trained during summer holidays during 2007 – 2013 (he’s from america, but other americans like jessica and krystal are fully trained, i think), he’s only started full training in 2013 (after graduating from high school). This is fascinating to me, because trainees don’t have bargaining power. Why do you think SM allows it? and for QRIMOLE readers, can you guys write in the comments if you know similiar situations like this? also OT (not a question this time), i just found out Seo Taiji was in a heavy metal band before the formation of Seo Taiji and the boys! just want to let you know (if you don’t know already).

Well he was probably super young at that point.  I guess they did a deal with the parents regarding schooling until he was old enough to be a k-pop.  Koreans love slave-driving but they also love school.

I think I sight-read too well? (piano.) I used to not be able to sight-read for crap, but then I practiced a lot and learned how, so instead of half-memorizing things as I learn them I can only read them. I haven’t memorized a real thing in months. How do I regain this skill? Should I give up and learn guitar chords that I can strum at parties instead?

You probably actually have memorised at least a few things but don’t realise it.  Sight-reading still requries muscle memory of a sort.  Try throwing the book away, or just reading the first bar and seeing if you can guess the next three.  You might surprise yourself.  In the meantime, I’ve heard the ladies love “Wonderwall”.

Every month I forget Qrimole exists, then I read the next one, come up with a question, and go “ah shit, now I have to wait another month.”

I’ve been with my current boyfriend for ~10 months now (right now I’m 20 and he’s 18, though I don’t know if that affects things.) Because we went to different schools and due to COVID, for around 6 of those months, we saw each other over the course of like 4 weeks. Basically, we were long distance for quite a while.

Now we’re going back to school and I expect to be long distance again. He left first. It’s been really tough. I’m pretty shy and hung out with him a lot in person, so without him around, I kind of felt like no one wanted to spend time with me anymore. After around a week, I’ve mostly figured things out. Although I have stuff to do with my time, everything feels slightly worse on a day-to-day basis. I look forward to working less without being able to see him after. I have less fun with friends when he’s not there. I feel unattractive without him around to tell me I’m beautiful. I’ve been grief-listening to “Butter Chicken” and “After We Ride” and lamenting the sad state of my life. Normal young person relationship stuff.

Basically, although we did long distance for six months and it was for the most part pretty lovely, I’m not sure I want to go back to it. He has a lot less time to talk now, and I have more trouble interpreting if he’s sad or happy with me over text. It’ll be especially busy once school starts for both of us. And I don’t know if I want to continue keeping up the time and emotional commitment of a relationship with fewer of the comforts from being with him in person. Last year it worked fine, partly because I didn’t have many other things I was doing besides school. But now, I think it might be better to just… ease things into friendship again? Not much would change except not expecting to have as many long one-on-one conversations and no flirting.

But I really do care about him, and I don’t want to hurt him. I don’t know how to say that even though nothing is wrong with him and I like what we have, I’m not sure I want to keep doing it anymore. It feels like it’d be really sudden. I don’t want him to feel like he did anything wrong. I’d hope things could go back to how they were before—with us being good friends, and not estranged or anything, but if I end things badly, that might be impossible. I’m not even sure ending things is the right thing to do right now—what if the breakup leaves me emotionally unstable right before I go off to university, and I then have tons of homework combined with no in-person support? (I’m going to a new school this year where I don’t really know anyone.)

No matter what happens, I’ll be fine, I think. Putting it into words makes me realize that the overall sentiment is pretty simple. I just don’t want to hurt him or myself.

If I were you I’d try to keep things going, and just be open to him about the problem.  If you basically still feel the same about him, but just think you’ll have less time, there are ways to manage it without throwing the baby out with the bathwater.  I feel like there’s only going to be a big problem here if you find you have to start distancing yourself but don’t actually tell him what’s up.  I’d be completely open about this with him from the get-go and just see what he says, you might be able to come to a solution that suits you both.  If not, probably no great loss as he wasn’t going to be long-term relationship material anyway if he can’t handle a bit of study prioritisation.

hello oppar, i hope you’re doing well. if you take a shot every time i say masculine in this question you’re probably going to die of a overdose lol.

so i’ve been going to therapy for a few months, have spent a decent amount of time reflecting on myself and getting to know my strengths and weaknesses so I can be a good partner. I would prefer to have long term relationships rather than shorter ones. I don’t think you have to be perfect to be in a relationship, but I have trauma from my bad family so I at least wanted to be aware of what was wrong with me before exposing someone else to it.

So I’ve been doing research on what makes guys different from girls and what they’re interested in when looking for a long term relationship (LTR) rather than just a quick fuck. I stubbled upon a book by a guy who explains that men are fundamentally different from women in that they don’t see themselves as having a purpose just innately, and have to be given some sort of duty to fulfill.
He also talked about how men like “feminine” women, and women who make them feel emotionally safe. Whether this is true or not is ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ but some of the stuff he described does tend to kinda roughly follow the patterns of how men and women behave from my experience.

Here’s a (free) link to the book in case this interests you or any qrimole reader


After doing more research (because why would put my faith in one book lol) I found this concept of wanting a “feminine” women being repeated a lot but like…0 explanation on what that meant. I finally found something that basically amounted to women who are caring, empthathetic and nurturing, seemed to like children, warm, etc.
It appeared to be someone who can contrast against the competitive nature that men lived in. They also spoke about disliking when their significant other liked to “compete” with them because it felt emasculating.

I’m not an asshole, but I’m not in anyway “nurturing” or soft. I tend to be very blunt, not super emotionally expressive, and perfectionistic. I also don’t smile often, one of those things dating coaches push.
Honestly this year I’ve been heavily questioning getting diagnosed for autism but like you said in that CC that shit is expensive! I probably won’t have that sort of money until I’m out of college.

I also continued to realize “feminine” is not who I am at all and had a little crisis.
I can’t be a second mother to a guy. I don’t mean this in a “not like the other girls” way at all but I do see a lot of women who say they are more “masculine” and are not when they actually get into a relationship. It might just be that these people aren’t confident in themselves though lol.

I’ve already had guys who thought they liked me and girls in general with a more assertive personality and then they ended up getting all triggered. A lot of guys who are like “I want woman with a strong personality” are often not a fan of it at all!

I also see a lot of guys who insist that feminism has made women more masculine.
That might be true for some because of the demands of modern society, but for me…I’ve always had a “masculine” personality. Even as a toddler and in elementary school before I knew what it was to be a girl or guy, really.
I’ve been described as assertive, confident, analytical, basically all the positive traits associated with men, as well as some of negative ones — stubborn, self-focused, etc.
I’ve never been good with children or babies, I can’t really cook and I don’t like cleaning. I don’t see those things changing.

I fear that men expect me to be something I am not. I guess the question is are there guys who like girls who are just more “masculine”? And how much do you think is true about guys needing to be the hero?

I know that speaking for myself, I definitely like women who have at least some traits that are considered stereotypically masculine.  I definitely like women who are independently-minded, i.e have their own view of the world and don’t seek validation from others for it.  Every woman I’ve ever been out with has been stubborn as shit, I can’t change their minds about anything even using the Josh techniques from earlier ahahahaha.  They’ve also been SUPER blunt, not a single one with tact!  Oh my god!  Also I’m not interested in having children so I deliberately have sought out women who feel the same about that one.  When I was in the dating scene I’d very frequently find myself crushing on girls only to find out that they were lesbian, and to this day I’ve dated and had relationships with far more bi girls than straight girls.  I don’t mind more feminine personality characteristics, but I don’t deliberately seek that out.  In fact I don’t think about this type of stuff much at all really, I just figure things either work or they don’t for whatever reason – but my point is that “feminine behaviour” in the traditional sense isn’t something that all guys value, or that is even really on their radar.  Also I don’t give a shit about a ton of typically masculine things either, like cars, drinking beer, or doing the sport ball shape.  Honestly to catch a hetero guy (assuming this is even what you want) the first thing to do is look like someone a hetero guy would want to catch – that will work, trust me.  That doesn’t mean “look overtly feminine” necessarily though, it just means “look female”, a pretty easy job if you actually are female.  Then just be where guys are and talk to them.  Repeat until the “not an asshole” box is ticked.  But don’t hold back because you’re worried about “femininity” or whatever, it’s your true personality which is going to attract the right person for you – if you put forward a fake “feminine” front, you’ll attract guys who are looking for that, and who will then feel let down when they find out you’re not really like that.  As Madonna says “express yourself, don’t repress yourself” – now there’s someone with a whole lot of stereotypically masculine traits who has never had any trouble finding a guy.

Guys are kind of socialised to be in the “hero” role, or the “rescuer” or whatever.  However it’s also not something I’ve given much thought to.  No doubt that I actually have been that person for some people, but just as often perhaps I’ve been the “rescued” one, I don’t know.  The bottom line for me is that stereotypical gender roles work, except when they don’t.  My girlfriend does the dishes and I don’t, because I hate doing the fucking dishes whereas she’s okay with it, but I hang out all the washing and she hangs out none of it, because she hates hanging the washing out with a passion whereas I don’t mind doing it.  If something in the house breaks, I fix it, because I’m better at that kind of thing.  She watches TV on the couch a ton more than I do.  Etc etc.  You can go down a list for all these things and tick “feminine” and “masculine” boxes if you want, but in the end, we just do what works for us.  Mind you if she did everything including repairing the cupboards when they break maybe I would feel a little emasculated, who knows.  I guess we would cross that bridge when we come to it.  But rest assured most guys don’t get too analytical about this.  If I’m with someone and we love each other and are making each other happy I’m not going to split hairs about insignificant things like who cleans the floorboards.

how to be cool and smart like umji, yet streetwise like yerin, all while rocking short eunha hair?

Continue to read kpopalypse dot com.  Subscribe to the site via email.  Donate to the Patreon if you’re rich enough to have a disposable dollar or two per month (but not if you’re broke, please).  Follow my Twitter and Youtube accounts.  Continue to learn trufax.  Also buy scissors.


That’s all for this month’s QRIMOLE!  This series will return next month!  In the meantime remember to support Loona!

Oh, and do you have a question that you’d like to see answered in the next episode of QRIMOLE?  If so, use the question box below, or if no box appears, click the Qri on the sidebar to open the box as a separate webpage!  Kpopalypse will return!

Leave a reply, cao ni ma

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.