AI BELIEVE

8 01 2012

No doubt if you have been keeping up with Hello! Project for the past week, you must already know the biggest latest announcement. For those who don’t know, Niigaki Risa announced that she will be graduating from Morning Musume and Hello! Project at the end of Morning Musume’s spring concert tour.

Play it cool

Gaki-san is my favorite member of Morning Musume, of Hello! Project. After laying my Kago fandom to rest, Gaki-san is overwhelmingly the heart of my idol fandom. Needless to say, I didn’t know what to think when I read the news on Twitter. How does one react to news like that? To know that someone who you look forward to seeing and hearing will no longer be there is sad.

Secretly, they know a lot that we don't know about

I wasn’t looking forward to the fact that after years of dodging bullets, the graduation has finally come. What’s more, apparently it was supposed to happen even earlier. Admittedly, I felt perhaps Gaki-san was meant to graduate with Takahashi. Perhaps that was part of the reason why Gaki-san was hesitant to write about how she felt about the graduation when Takahashi announced hers. We could speculate forever if Gaki-san was held back by her own will or if they urged her to hold back so that she could meet and train the 10th generation. But I’m not here to speculate, such things are not for me to question.

For whatever reason, Gaki-san didn’t graduate in late September with Takahashi. She’s now set to graduate some time in May. Soon after the announcement I was talking to a friend of mine and with my eyes closed, I had a sudden epiphany. For whatever reason, Gaki-san didn’t graduate in late September with Takahashi. She’s now set to graduate some time in May. I went online and looked up my school calendar and looked up the current schedule of Morning Musume’s spring tour. It occurred to me, somehow… somehow, it could be possible. Somehow, I might be able to see her before she graduated.

SOMEHOW

If indeed Gaki-san is set to graduate on the last concert of the spring tour on May 13th. That places her concert right after I finish school. As it stands it is mere days before my own graduation from school. Do I expect her to graduate on that day? No, however no additional information has been announced that deters me from the current target date.

I have looked forward to seeing Morning Musume live for the longest time. The first night, I frantically started thinking a lot. Is it really possible? Can I go? How much money would I need? What would I need? Where would I stay?

There are so many questions. There are so many things I need to prepare for. I’ve never been out of the country. I’ve never traveled a long distance by myself. I’ve never placed myself into a foreign country where I wasn’t semi-fluent in the language. There’s a lot to consider …

And yet as I was questioning myself at every turn, I realized something. I realized, I wasn’t saying no. I realized, I wasn’t telling myself I couldn’t do it. This time it was different, I was telling myself what do I need to do? What kind of problems would I run into?

Is this love?

At some point, I realized … I was thinking about going to a foreign country, alone, for the first time all for one girl. One girl, who I wouldn’t even talk to, possibly not even make full eye contact with. One girl, who at the end of the day would not know who I was. I was thinking about making one of the biggest decisions in my life all for Gaki-san.

And I thought for a moment … is this love? Now, of course not love, by the standard metric that is a relationship with a companion. But something different all together. The only way I can explain what I felt that night was, “is this love?”. If you are ever in the same situation that I described, think about it and let me know.

Gaki-san in lovely red

Long story short (which I never do on this blog), I entertained the idea of going to Japan to see Gaki-san one last time before she would graduate. When Morning Musume came to Anime Expo, they were on the opposite side of the country of me. I resolved I couldn’t go on day one. Did I regret it? Yes.

But as you read, that night I had a very different reaction. I didn’t say it was impossible. I was convincing myself that if Gaki-san meant that much to me, it could be possible. Well, what if it weren’t possible? I would never know unless I tried, wouldn’t I? What if I tried and couldn’t make it? Well, at least I knew I tried. What if I could have tried harder, wouldn’t I regret that I was so close? That was where I came up with my resolve. I didn’t want to be me years ago who didn’t even try to make Anime Expo happen. I didn’t want to give up before I even tried.

Sometimes life changes in the oddest ways. Some people find their calling in the most unforeseen hobbies. Other people find the love of their life in some freak accident. Morning Musume has a lot of meaning to me. I believe that this graduation is not meant to be a concert that will merely be recorded on DVD for fans to reminisce and future fans to see. If anything, Takahashi graduating first taught me one important thing and that’s the meaning of, AI Believe.

AI BELIEVE

I believe that if this means as much to me as I believe it does, I will make it happen. I believe that I won’t let anything stop me from getting on a plane to Japan and getting into that concert hall. I believe that this graduation means so much more than just a step in my fandom. I believe I will make it to Japan to see Gaki-san graduate from the group that I have come to and will continue to hold dear to my heart.

~Siggy, who almost teared up writing the last paragraph~





Refreshing Summer

15 07 2011

I actually just finished summer classes last week.           I wonder what these girls are like in school, for real.

School’s out! Summer has come, which can only mean one thing. Heat, absolute heat. It’s a hallmark of summer. I will come out and say that I am a person paranoid of extreme temperatures and significant changes in temperature. In fact, I highly dislike summer. I have a multitude of reasons why.

009

It’s hot, it’s too hot.

Fans are useful

And then when it rains, it hails instead or knocks out all your electronics because it’s a thunderstorm instead. Also there are too many tourists. I live in a city with 12 casinos! Just imagine the amount of tourists. What’s more, I live in a city next to the beach. Now I know what you’re thinking. “Why Siggy, why don’t you just go to the beach and have a nice day?”

I would always go to the beach if this were the case.

“Why, I mean you can do all sorts of fun stuff at the beach like:

Surfing,
Wouldn't it be great to learn how to surf?              I would surf with Takahashi anytime...

Lounging around, sun-tanning,
Sun-tanning Sun-tanning the back
This would make me want to go to the beach... yep
Playing with balls.    God this is so hot.

Well I hear what you’re saying. But I have to admit, I’ve been to the beach several times and there’s nothing like this there. What’s more I don’t like how the sand gets all over you. Now I won’t show you what my beach is actually like because I’m ashamed of it, so we’ll just say bye to the beach.

“Well Siggy, what about the water? You could go swimming in a pool, there’s no sand there!”

Swim Nakky!

Why aren't the workers at my local pool like Airi?

I could but I happen to also be hydrophobic. I’m afraid of large bodies of water and I can’t swim. What a terrible fate to live on an island and be unable to swim. Alas, such is my fate. Makes one wonder how I’ll be able to one day live the trip to Japan. But I’ll wait for when the time comes in regards to that.

International Wota Summer Refreshment Program

Honestly, I don’t like the beach probably because I’m so used to it after living two blocks away from it for years. But I love my idols associated with the above. Who doesn’t? I mean, Airi and Takahashi  and ugh so good. As I had mentioned before I was interested in doing the Intlwota Summer Refreshment Program and here is my post sponsored by Intlwota. Read on for long long passages of text outlining the conspiracy about idols and summer.

Just kidding, read on for a fun summery article on something that I’ve noticed. Which really means it’s a conspiracy.

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Connections

11 01 2011

More than likely, anyone reading this post will have already heard the news. The news has been erred! Tsunku has selected the winners of his 9th generation audition for Morning Musume. Congratulations to Sayashi Riho, Ikuta Erina and Kanon Suzuki and the surprise Egg promotion, Fukumura Mizuki!

Zukki~~~I’m going out on a limb and saying that this generation is definitely going to be stronger than 8th generation. No offense to Mittsi fans out there but Zukki has already captured my heart with her smile.

Oh wait… no that’s old news. The above would have totally been the topic of this post had I had one in the pipeline. Unfortunately, priority in news has delayed my impressions of the 9th generation. Let’s rewind the clocks a bit. Last night I had a nosebleed. It just came out of nowhere, like I can’t make this stuff up. No one punched me, no one landed a football on me. It just starts. In the past I have related nosebleeds to premonitions or reactions to major events.

I usually read all my tweets and Facebook updates before I go to sleep. I went to sleep comparatively earlier than usual (somewhere around 1 AM) because I wanted some rest after bleeding. I wake up somewhere around 10AM and check my tweets. I usually check my tweets at my bed with my TweetDeck for Android app which extends a yellow bar from the last read update so you can see how much you have ahead of you. For some reason or another the bar was extremely long, over twice the length that I was used to seeing from just one normal sleeping period. Color me surprised, I should have known why.

When she talks something is up

Takahashi Ai, the current leader of Morning Musume and Hello! Project has announced her graduation. She will be graduating at the end of Morning Musume’s fall tour. After going through the past couple of graduation announcements the shock factor really did not shock me as much this time. But at first, reading those words seemed so matter of fact. I almost felt if it wasn’t real yet I knew very much so it was real.

Read onwards for my feelings on this and a completely unnecessary but interesting analysis.

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Inspiring

12 12 2010

Less than one week left before what I feel will be the biggest graduation concert ever for Morning Musume. Maybe the members are not as popular as Nacchi or as instrumental as Iida , but there are 3 graduating! For anyone else who’s having a hard time as the time is ticking by here’s some inspiration.

image

The image is from earlier snapshots of Rival Survival. And even though you can’t see everyone’s face clearly the colors delineate everyone. Whenever I look at the photo I feel truly inspired. Just like at Koharu’s graduation, they have a huddle onstage. And to have it onstage really shows the girls and their earnest hard work. I can’t wait to cry streams watching this concert…

Savor the last couple of days as Morning Musume will be undergoing one of the biggest transformations it has gone through since the inclusion of the 2nd generation. For better or for worse? Who knows, we’ll just have to weather it out and hope for the best. Now go and listen to that awesome B-side, Inspiration.

GANBATTEIKIMA~SSHOI!

~Siggy, who has his Rival Survival gear ready for the 15th~





Never Forget

13 08 2010

“Retcon”, it’s a word in my list of favorite words to use for no real reason. Though, when I say no real reason, I am usually (there are rare instances) using the word correctly. Actually I have a lot of words that I love using when there are simpler words that could’ve done the trick. But I digress.

Retroactive Continuity. The word, “retcon” is a portmanteau of retroactive continuity which simply means to alter established facts on purpose. Usually it is to clean up existing continuity or to correct for happenings that would cause a review of previous established continuity. Retconning as far as I know only applies to fictional works. I suppose for non-fiction works retconning would just be erasing or altering history. But retconning sounds SO much cooler than erasing history. Maybe we can make a new word … erastory, altestory? Nah, that doesn’t have a good ring to it.

So if you’ve gotten this far I will now proceed to the meat of the day. What I want to talk about today is: retconning in Hello! Project. You see the other day when the horses started neighing, thunder was striking all over the place, goldfishes around the world were swimming in figure eights, and pandas started walking into bars and shooting patrons and abruptly leaving before they paid their bills… So the other day, I was looking at this picture. And that’s when I decided I wanted to talk about retconning in Hello! Project.

モーニング娘。9期メンバーオーディション

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HelloStoreUSA Flickr Contest

30 05 2010

So not too long ago, HelloStoreUSA (henceforth known as H!S, I’ve seen HSU, but I like H!S more) made their own official group pool for pictures on Flickr. They were to select their favorite picture for official goods in an arrangement (room, etc) and also fan with official goods. I was pretty excited about it and made plans to take pictures. It took a little more than an hour and a half to get two acceptable pictures XD

The very first and worst pictureThe end result which was my second to last attempt

All the pictures seen are the original un-edited, un-cropped pictures. Read on for the grueling process this was.

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5th Year H!P Anniversary

16 01 2010

Throughout the latter part of my life I have seen many people celebrate anniversaries. So for today, I will indulge in celebrating an anniversary, to be more exact my 5th year anniversary of being a Hello! Project fan!

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