Liebster awards have been popping up all over the dramaweb lately. They’re an informal way for bloggers to appreciate the work of other bloggers—there’s no governing body or even a list of all the nominees. I’ve been nominated twice, once by Chunkemonkeeato at Musings of a Chunkeemonkeeato and once by Indigo at Between Worlds. These are two of the blogs I’ve been keeping up with forever, which makes it extra cool that they thought of me for a nomination. (Thanks, guys!)
I thought I’d use this opportunity to create an About Me page for this blog. I apologize in advance if this post makes you fall asleep—I’m one of the world’s most boring human beings.
First of all, a few notes about how things work around here: I try to post something new twice a week. Most Tuesdays I talk about currently airing shows or drama-related things I’ve been thinking about, and most Thursdays I post a new review of a completed drama or movie. I also post in the “Random Thoughts” sidebar whenever I have...wait for it...a random thought. These are eventually included in the final review I write about whatever inspired them.
You can also find me on Soompi, where I sometimes post about drama topics. I keep track of what I’ve watched at MyDramaList and collect my rare fanfic at Fanfiction.net. And to hammer the final nail in the coffin of my social life, I’m also on both Tumblr and Twitter.
On to the awardy stuff!
The rules for receiving this award:
List 11 random facts about yourself.
Answer the questions designated by the blogger (s) who nominated you.
Place YOUR nominations for the Liebster Award! Nominate five (or more) other bloggers that have less than 200 followers. Make sure to notify them via comment/email, etc.
Make up a set of questions for those nominated bloggers to answer.
Display the Liebster award badge on your blog!
11 Random Facts about Me
1. I wrote about my Kdrama origin story here. This is far from my first obsession, though—I’ve spent most of my adult life being enthralled by one fannish thing after another. Over the years I’ve traveled thousands of miles to see my favorite band, attended conventions devoted to geeky television shows, and written reams of fan fiction. Just how long my Kdrama obsession will last is a mystery, but as of now I sure am having fun with it.
2. In my everyday life I pretend to be an adult. I’m reasonably good at it—I have a job at a nonprofit that actually values me for my compulsive attention to detail, I own my own home, and I’ve recently developed the ability to keep houseplants alive for months on end. I am, however, childless and perpetually single. These things don’t really bother me—living a life without diapers to change and a man to monopolize my television with sporting events isn’t such a bad thing.
3. With the exception of a six-month window spent across the river in New Hampshire, I’ve spent my entire life in Vermont. It’s not that easy to be a true “Vermonter,” though—I was born out of state and I’m only the second generation to live here, which makes me practically a flatlander. [Flatlander (noun): A term of disparagement Vermonters use to describe people who grew up in hill-free places. “That flatlander needs to take his Land Rover back to the streets of Boston where it belongs.”] I am not, however, what you probably picture when you think about people from my state. I’ve only gone skiing once, have no special attachment to cows, and have never owned a pair of Birkinstock sandals.
4. I’ve wanted to be a writer essentially since birth. In sixth grade my English teacher assigned us to write our own obituaries. A brief summary: Amanda may be dead, but her fifty New York Times bestsellers will live on forever. Her loving husband, Joe McIntyre—formerly of the band New Kids on the Block—is totally bummed.
5. Sharks were one of my childhood obsessions, and I’ve since swam with them several times. I even took scuba diving for one of my required gym classes in college in hopes of someday seeing a great white from the inside of a dive cage. Like most other sports, though, I sucked at it. My final open-water dive for certification was on the day before Thanksgiving. As I stood in a painfully tight wetsuit watching snow fall on Lake Champlain, I realized something: scuba diving was not my thing. I left without even getting in the water. (I somehow still managed to get a B in the class. And even though I spent a lot of time in Lake Champlain, I’m sorry to report that I never once saw Champ, its resident lake monster.)
6. In 2002 I started keeping a list of everything I read. Since then I’ve read 512 books, starting with Natalie Babbit’s Tuck Everlasting (finished 11/9/02) and ending with Monica Ali’s Brick Lane (finished last Thursday). I don’t really have a favorite, but I tend to love writers who deal with magical realism, including Angela Carter, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Alice Hoffman, and Francesca Lia Block. I’m also a fan of young adult fiction; I read more of it today than I did when I was actually a young adult.
7. Before Korean drama happened to me, I used to be an encyclopedia of American pop culture. Nowadays I can barely tell Rhianna from Honey Boo Boo, and this actually worries me: How can I make small talk when I speak a different language from everyone around me? I’ll be like one of those weirdos who grew up without a television and gets a blank look on their face whenever The Brady Bunch comes up in conversation.
8. I’m incredibly jealous of K-ent bloggers who have gone to Korea, but I can’t imagine myself making the trip. My reasons are legion: It’s far, far away; I don’t speak the language; I fear and loathe strangers; and I barely make enough money to live on, say nothing about travel the globe. I also appreciate that it’s a little weird to be this obsessed with someone else’s culture and am just fine with leaving it mostly on the Internet.
9. I’m not very girlie at all. I don’t like the color pink, paint my fingernails, or wear high heels. I like things that are simple and clean and classic, not floaty and feminine. Only my rather significant bosom would prevent me from being mistaken for a guy in Korea.
10. I use the word Indeed all the time. It’s versatile and appropriate for almost any occasion because the meaning lies in its intonation. Say it with me: With disdain—Indeed. With appreciation—Indeed! With shock: Indeed?
|Also not me.|
11. The list of things I can’t do is vastly longer than the list of things I can do.
Can’t: Ride a bike. Roll the letter r. Knit. Play an instrument. Speak a language other than English. Cook any recipe requiring more than 5 ingredients. Sing. Drink more than one beer without getting tipsy. Run a marathon. Cure cancer. Long division. Come up with 11 random facts about myself.
Can: … ?
And here are the specific questions from the bloggers who nominated me.
1. If you, yourself, could be in a drama/sitcom (not as a certain character, but you), which one would it be? How do you think your presence will change the plot?
How could I chose any drama but Coffee Prince? I’ve watched it so many times I practically live in it, anyway. I would be Eun Chan’s English-speaking next door neighbor and confidant. (It’s easy to tell your secrets to someone who can’t understand you, right?) Ha Rim and I would end up in a steamy noona romance.
2. If you could defend any drama villain, who would it be and how would you defend their case? (I told you I think like a lawyer).
I can’t think of a single Kdrama villain that I have enough sympathy for to defend. I’d probably do such a bad job faking it that they’d end up getting the death penalty.
3. What’s your motivation for keeping up with your blog?
Because I just can’t shut up, mostly. (Exhibit A: the length of this post.) I’m also a creature of habit—I like the cozy repetition of waking up each weekend morning and writing a post for the upcoming week before carrying on with real life. Also, I live for comments. This is weird and hypocritical of me because I so rarely respond to them, but there just aren’t enough hours in the day for me to do everything I want to do.
4. What’s your favorite blog post that you’ve written so far? Why?
It wasn’t that popular, but I think The Korean Phrasebook for Drama Lovers Abroad is insanely funny. Some people didn’t really get it—the whole point is that it’s a affectionate critique of how all-encompassing Kdrama obsession can be, not a collection of phrases anyone should really use. I also love that it tells this spare little Innocents Abroad-style story in one-sided dialogue, asking you to fill in all the details of location and delivery.
|Also also not me.|
5. If you could have one superpower, what would it be and how would you use it?
Not to be superficial or anything, but I’d want to be like Mystique from X-men. I would use her chameleon abilities to be drop-dead gorgeous when I felt like it, and also to blend in: if you could look like anyone, there’s no place you couldn’t go.
1. What has been the hardest challenge of your blogging career? (e.g. getting people to comment, making headers, placing pictures side by side, etc)
Everything you mentioned has been a big challenge. I’m very much function over form in everything I do, so I don’t spend a lot of time making this blog look nice. This is too bad—a professional layout makes a huge difference when you want to look trustworthy. (And I have to say Blogger is no help whatsoever on this front. All its layouts are ugly and overused, compared to the amazingly gorgeous and varied templates available for Wordpress sites.)
Finding pictures is probably the biggest time suck of blogging, though. I’m no pro at taking screen caps so I’m always trolling Google Images for things to use. Which is why I decided to liberate myself and include only a few images in this post.
2. "When life gives you lemons..." Then what are you going to do with them? (you are free to be as imaginative as you like)
Let them sit on my kitchen counter until they go bad, and then throw them out. That’s my universal approach when it comes to produce.
3. What is your favourite and least favourite Asian drama cliche?
Chaebol romances of any type are like catnip to me. In a lot of ways, Boys over Flowers has yet to be exceeded on this front: it’s full of wish-fulfillment shopping sprees and gawking at how the other half lives. It also includes an example of amnesia, my least favorite Kdrama cliché. Time between Dog and Wolf is the only show I’ve seen that made good use of it; the rest are just examples of lazy writers looking for ways to burn off a few more episodes without having to do any actual work.
|Also also also not me.|
4. Which Korean variety show would you like to participate in?
I’ve never actually watched a Korean variety show, so I don’t know. I could deal with being on Kpop Tasty Road, though: they visit restaurants around Seoul, show pictures of Kpop stars eating there, and then order the same dishes. (Call me, PD-nim!)
5. If you had the chance to personally slap (or punch) one drama character, then who from which drama would it be and why?
In a perfect world, I’d be able to slap one character from every drama. If I had to pick, I’d probably go with the villain from My Princess. She was a show-ruining bitch, and the spineless female lead didn’t even try to stand up to her. (Wait. Maybe I should be punching the show’s writer instead.)
Blogs I Nominate
(To spread the love, these choices represent my favorite frequently updated blogs that I haven’t seen nominations for yet.)
My questions for you
(Which have been borrowed liberally from the questions asked of me, because I really liked them.)
1. What’s your motivation for blogging?
2. Do you post under your real name? Why or why not? And if you don’t, how did you chose your blogging identity?
3. What’s your favorite blog post that you’ve written so far?
4. What has been your biggest blogging challenge (e.g. getting people to comment, making headers, placing pictures side by side, etc)?
5. What are your favorite and least favorite drama cliches?