Chained Up

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Seriously. I’ve been chained up at work, trying to usher in my new (very nice) but very confused and lost co teacher. I’ve been chained up at the gym because I’ve been working extra hard trying to make up for those past two months of nothingness. And of course. I’ve been chained up by VIXX’s comeback: song, album, music video…. yep you guessed it, entitled “Chained Up”.

Having to actually work:

So I’m considered pretty lucky I would say. Even though most teachers I know have to work the full weekly hours, I get away with working 16-2 of those include me just babysitting in daycare.

But with the new co-teacher here things have fallen on me to plan and take charge more.  Our system is really strange.  I teach one 80 minute English class once a week to each 5h grade class. But my Korean co teacher will teach them one 40 minute class. But this could either come before or after my class. So the rotation on which lesson goes where becomes a nightmare.

For example, my 5-2 class had missed 2 weeks worth of classes with me and 1 week with the Korean co. so that put them way behind everyone else. But we can’t just skip ahead because then they would be lost and it would screw up the entire lesson.

So I had to take over one of her classes to get them back on track while my new co wants to do a make up class with them on her own for 80 minutes  with a lesson she’s seen me teach once or twice to a class she’s met only once.

It’s becoming schdueling and lesson planning hell. In no way am I blaming her at all. But to just throw someone new when we are almost finished the year makes no sense at all.

This is actually the third co teacher I’ve had.  I have my female co teacher who hasn’t changed. But then originally I had an older substitute female who had only taught third grade and wasn’t quite equipped to deal with rowdy fifth graders. Then I got my male co and that’s how it was for most of the year. Until now. My new female co has only taught middle and high school.

Now for the first time she is teaching 5th and 3rd graders. She said she’s not used to them talking so much, or acting out.  It’s a different kind of behavior problem-elementary vs older students. For example, my friend K has to deal with real physical fights, mouthing off, just overall middle school behavior issues.

Whereas I have to deal with crying, hurt feelings, bad words.  It’s the same kind of issues but the levels of how the kids are doing these bad things and how we have to respond are completely different.  The most physical my kids get are hitting each other without doing any real harm. I still tell them not to do it. Whereas my friend said she had to grab a kid by the back of the hood and pull him off another. I have to deal with kids crying because the class didn’t agree or like what they said or did. K has to deal with them refusing to listen to her and not responding to the kind of “threats” that would work with my kids.

So I think it’s a hard transition for my new co teacher and it’s not an easy one. it’s becoming a burden for me though because now I have to help out with not only my own class that I teach with her, but the ones she has on her own.

She tells me the kids tell her to plan more games and that class isn’t fun.

And a few of my classes are acting up.  I don’t know if they are testing me, her or the both of us.  Well it worked. They tested me and they reaped the outcome.

My favorite class 5-2 whom I hadn’t seen in 2 weeks became out of control. So we stopped the game. They copied lines for  a solid 12 minutes in absolute silence. Because their English is so good, I was able to get my point across to them.

I asked them if it was fun. Why not? Why did they have to copy lines (깜지) ? What will they not do next class.  And then because I didn’t want to deflate their confidence, I told them that next class would be a new slate.  We would start again.  I’ve never seen the class so quiet, or sad/scared/upset so I guess it worked.

Then for my previous horrible class turned great class 5-1, they were too rowdy during the game so we stopped. They sat down. I did my best (their English is so low but getting much better) to talk to them the same way as 5-2.

Why did we stop the game? Next week do you want to do 깜지? They also were shockingly silent.

I hated being mean teacher and I don’t want to carry any negativtiy over into the following class. Because these kids moods change day to day, and sometimes they are bad, sometimes they are good…you have to take it class by class. Most of my classes are consistent with having an off day or a really great day here or there, but this week has not been a good week for 5th grade.

I’ve also been starting to prep for winter camp. I realized that winter camp is only a little less than 2 months out. I really wanted to do an Avatar the last airbender theme but I just don’t have the time with this new co teacher, to really think about how to make it interesting enough. So I’ve gone with the classic standby harry potter english camp.  Luckily while it’s two weeks of camp, it’s only 5 days, unlike 7 days of planning. So in a way it’s almost better I think.

I’ve made up rough plans like Potions day will be about the to drink verb, to be thirsty, cup sizes, ordering, and then even how to make some drinks. I’m going to try to see if we can get the ingredients to make butterbeer. and then have a butterbeer taste testing afterwards.

I think the hardest will be getting the school to sign off on the budget. Even though I had 700,000 last summer I was really only allowed to use like 100,000 of it which included snacks and drinks for the final party day.

So we will see what I’m allowed to use this time.

As for making up gym time. Well I had a really good routine going that got thrown into chaos during my parents visit.  It feels like ever since my parents came to visit in August it’s been a game of catch up. Catch up at the gym. Catch up with cleaning. Catch up with money.

Money…will always be an issue. Cleaning…well it’s just me  and I’m not a really neat person anyway. But gym time. This past summer was difficult. The gym didn’t put on the Air Con until like mid July. But because Korea doesn’t have central air, it wasn’t enough to make the gym feel cool.  It became unbearable that I had to stop going.

Now that it’s cooler, I’ve been trying to go at least 4 times a week. It’s hard sometimes because the extra work I’ve been putting in at work is causing me to become tired and wanting to nap as soon as I get home.

Wednesday it was shoulder and chest day.  I was getting off the the bench after shoulder press when somehow I tweaked my IT band. No clue. It didn’t hurt but it was tight.  I figured it would go away and that would be the end of it. But it stayed tight the entire next day but since there was no pain I figured I could give leg day a go anyway. Bad idea. I got through my first set of inverted leg press and just about died. But I wanted to finish it which I did.  And that did me in. I wound up  not being able to do anything that required bending and putting weight on it so no squats at all. Only inner thigh and hamstrings which were both seated.  I couldn’t even really walk on the treadmill.  I praticed bending it last night and trying to stand up on it.  But any pressure is so painful.

My friend who is now a liscenced physical trainer said that it might  2 weeks before I can go back to running and weight training for legs. So…does that mean in the mean time I can only work on my upper body? If so…My arms, shoulders are going to be huge!

I have a love hate relationship with running and cardio. I never feel like I’ve had a good workout if I didn’t run.  But it really hate it. But I love it.  Running is like…well there is no other thing like running for me. Simultaneously hating something with a burning passion and loving it at the same time. (And I don’t mean, I love it so much I hate it for ruining my life.  I just flat out hate it)

But despite all of that crap (this all happened this week) VIXX had their comeback.

I didn’t want to review the MV or song or album but I feel that I have no choice.

I didn’t listen to the album or the song when it dropped on Tuesday at midnight because I really wanted to wait for the MV and I’m glad I did. I heard some people weren’t really feeling the song until the MV came out.

I think the MV enhances the song a lot.  But now I’m at the point where I’ve watched the MV enough that I can now groove to the song without it.

That being said, while it’s not my favorite VIXX song, I think it makes for a really dynamic comeback.

I know a lot of people don’t like the song, but a lot of non VIXX fans really do.

The song itself. It had to grow on me. But it grew faster than I thought. The MV helped a lot. The line distribution is much more reasonable this time.  I guess they felt bad for Hongbin in Love Equation (you know how he got like 1 and 1/2 lines?) and gave him three separate parts. Hyuk’s part while still not huge still seemed a little more than usual. Ravi’s raps were kind of here and there culminating in the final extended rap. I kind of felt they could have given some of that to Hyuk though. Or maybe had Hyuk sing the parts that Binnie sang in the beginning and switched Binnie over to some of Ravi’s raps since you know…he originally was labeled as a sub rapper.

N’s part seemed smaller than usual as did Ken’s. The only thing I can think of is the fact these two have been the busiest out of all the VIXX members. N had: radio show, drama, weekly idol guest host, VIXX festivals, laws of the jungle…he had so much that on the V APP as my friend W said, we got used to seeing VIXX more as 5 – it was to the point where I got used to hearing Leo say “Real V” instead of N.

I’m glad that some of his stuff has ended but I hope that isn’t a signal that it means his empty scheduele needs to be filled with more stuff. He has been looking tired and is even acting less like…Mom “N”.  I hope despite the insanity that comebacks can be, he might actually get some rest and become the N that I adore/fear.

Next is my man Ken. Oh Ken. When there was the article that was released about him coughing up blood…

Ken has been looking really thin ever since he started his musical Chess. If you look at pictures of him now compared to Love Equation, he looks kind of sickly.  Still looks perfect but I’m seriously worried about his health. He’s had back to back musicals with Chess and Cinderella.  And now Cinderella is being extended.  I know he won’t be performing for a few weeks – I guess to do VIXX promotions.

But his voice…their showcase he didn’t sound like himself.  He didn’t sound bad but his voice sounds tired, and strained.  I feel on the album as well he isn’t singing as much, or as strong as he usually does.

It’s not the voice that I completely fell head over heels for.  And I don’t know if it’s because his voice can’t handle it because of the musicals and his health, or something else.

I hope he gets some rest and takes care of his health. I would rather wait another year for a VIXX comeback than hear about Ken coughing up blood.

As for Leo, well there’s not much to say other than he’s blonde.  Typical Leo. Handsome, Even if Leo with black hair is like the God of all religions.

And Ravi. At least his hair is normal! No Error mess. No On and ON coloring..he looks normal and good.  And I saw he has like 70% credits for writing this time.  It’s cool to see him take charge more.

The MV.  Well …unlike typical VIXX there wasn’t too much of a storyline.  Which is actually not a bad thing.  It wasn’t even noticeable until I saw someone point it out. You’re too focused on the song, the dance, the no shirt under blazers type of thing.

While visually impressive, it’s less…out of of control like some of VIXX stuff.  It’s less …huge.  Error felt like a blockbuster hit. voodoo doll was a horror movie. Hyde was like halloween meets an episode of buffy the vampire slayer. Even Love Equation which wasn’t dark or epic, had a storyline you could follow.

But it fit the song.  If the dance had been too fast paced it  wouldn’t have made sense.  It’s a classy meets sexy concept-classy sexy love slaves????

Either way, it worked for VIXX and probably only VIXX. I somehow can’t see EXO doing this concept nor would I want to.  (I mean DO as a love slave is one thing but having to watch Chanyeol and Chen try to do the body rolls would kill me from second hand embarssement)

And the album.  I really like the songs. MAZE is really cool sounding and Spider as well. I’ve really only had a few listen through which happened at the gym and working at school so I haven’t really had time to sit down a listen listen.

I don’t think I dislike any song which is typical of VIXX albums for me-hence probably why they are my favorite group amongst other reasons.  I really like how they made a Korean version of Can’t Say-However I’ve gotten so used to the Japanese one that the Korean one sounds weird and I’m not sure I like it as much.  I’m sure if it was the other way around, I would feel the same.  It’s more about what came first LOL (Ok not true because I really like EXO’s Love me Right Japanese version…but not the Chinese one).

I don’t understand why Error and Eternity are on the album though. I know that Voodoo Doll had other title tracks on it as well, but Chained Up 1. isn’t as long of a track list  as Voodoo Doll first full length album 2. i don’t think it had 2 songs on it and if they did they weren’t as old as say Eterenity to Chained up is  3. they don’t really fit the album that well.

It’s not that Eternity and Error are immature songs AT ALL but they feel out of place and somehow younger than the rest of the album.  I don’t have a problem with one or two older title tracks but not at the expense of the album and new songs.  It almost feels like this full length album is a mini album once you take away Eternity and Error.

Eternity I think fits a little more than Error (just because I’m one of those freaks who isn’t a huge fan of Error) but still…it’s out of place.

I hope VIXX doesn’t wait as long for their next comeback. I know they’ve been super busy with personal projects, sub unit-and as much as I love them individually and have my bias (which is actually kind of in a state of flux now ) I always prefer VIXX together.

The comeback time between Love Equation in Feb (or was it March?) and now is a long time. Yes they have been playing festivals (I’ve gone to see most of them) but I really wanted new stuff from them. Don’t get me wrong-Beautiful Liar the song and the album tied me over well. But I kind of felt like i was slowly losing a little bit of Love for VIXX because I exhausted all their music.  So that’s kind of how EXO wormed it’s way in-even though they had had stuff out forever I didn’t really know about it so it was kind of like discovering new music.

But now VIXX is back and promotions are now underway!!! EXO is killing it in Japan so I won’t have to worry about that, though Lightsaber came out-not too sure. DO sounds like chocolate honey heaven as usual but the MV is just kind of Kai, Sehun and Baekhyun walking around.  I’ve not had much time to pay attention to them because well…VIXX has once again proven why they are my favorite KPOP group.

So that was one long post that went from teaching to exercise to KPOP.

Next post I will tell you about my first “night party” at Lotte World. Its Friday night from 10 pm – Sat morning at 530 am. So I guess it’s like the same hours as prom except that I’m  10 years older and 10 years older…meaning energy levels will be…very very different.

I know JJCC and The Legend will be there but other than that? It will be fun I think because I haven’t had an event in a while and won’t be having one unless BTOB or VIXX decides to have a concert soon!

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