Kai – Monster keywords: Happiness, Memory, Dance
Q: What is your earliest memory?
Kai: The oldest memory I have of myself is when I was in kindergarten, there was a stationery shop at the bottom of the hill. I remember that there was a claw machine in front of it where you put in 100won and operate it. The image of the catching of items is very vivid. Apart from that, I also remember the first home that I lived in in the past. Was the first home that I lived in? Or rather, it was the first home that I remember. And it was the image of me living happily with my parents. I didn’t give my dad kisses but only gave my mom, those kind of things? I think that was my very first memory.
Q: Have you ever had times where you think that you’re an adult?
Kai: A time where I think I’m like an adult? The most recent I felt that way was on Children’s Day. I went out to get a present for my niece and had a phone call with my parents. I said to my mother, “Mom, today is Children’s Day, treat me with love.” But my mother said, “What are you talking about, you’re not a child.” And on Parents’ Day, I thought taking care of my parents was an obligation when I was younger but now, because I cannot visit them often, I think a lot about needing to give them at least a phone call. Those kind of things? Recently I feel like I became an adult when it comes to those things but apart from that, I don’t think I’ve felt like I’ve become an adult. Sometimes I think that everyone, including me, think that we mature with age. After the age of twenty, we think that there should be a line between being a child and an adult. I don’t think that is important. You can still have the thoughts you had when you were a kid when you grow up. And it’s not like the thoughts you had as a child were wrong or had no value just because they were thoughts coming from a child. For me, I don’t think those things are all that important. I’m not trying to make an assertion about what is an adult or what is a child, after all we are the same person growing up.
Q: The past, the present, the future. What you think is the most important?
Kai: I think they’re all important. I think they’re all equally important but… The most important is… I think all three are important. I think it is important for you not to lose that drive you had from the past and for you to look back on yourself in the present. And also imagining the things that won’t happen in the future. I think all three are good/important.
Q: When you think that you’re really yourself?
Kai: When I look at the time after waking up. When I sleep in. (Laughs) I think those times are when I’m really myself. If not, um, the time when I think I’m the most me would be… when I discover a part of myself that I don’t know? When I discover a part of myself that is different from the everyday me, I think I’m more myself. If we talk about our social livess, we have a certain attitude towards other people to some extent. With our basic etiquette, we are bound to change how we look at someone according to the situation or the relationship we have with them. I think that is how we view someone, based on our social custom that is fit for that moment. When I meet my friends and a side of me that even I don’t know appears, that is when I really think ‘This is me.’ Because that side of me came out from within me. Because it is the side of me that comes out unconsciously.
Q: Is there a time when a person you were once close to suddenly felt like a stranger?
Kai: Many times. There are times when I feel unfamiliar even when I look at my mother’s face. I seriously feel that way. With things that are unfamiliar, it’s not a bad unfamiliarity but it’s somehow like trying to search for something different. I would feel unfamiliar but when I really have a good look at her, I go “Oh, seems like her eyebrows changed?” (Laughs) It can be things like these. A new feeling when I look at them.
Q: Do you think it is because of internal or external factors that a person changes?
Kai: I think it is due to both. But I think somehow, internal factors play a bigger part. There are situations that are difficult to someone. However, there are also people who don’t think that way. Everyone’s situation is different so I think even with the same pressure people receive on the outside, the limit for each individual is different. And so I think that the most part of a change comes from internal factors. There are obviously external factors too, but even underdoing the same pain, someone might completely give up, while someone else might become a better person after conquering that same suffering. Other people cannot truly understand the pain that person is receiving since each person has different sufferings. I think it is the internal problem. When one is stressed, only they, themselves, can relieve that stress best and I think it is most important that they resolve it on their own. Though it is also important to receive comfort from others, I think it is different depending on each person’s mindset. For me, I think it is all due to internal factors that one changes.
Q: What do you think is essential for you to stay the same when people around you change?
Kai: Dance. That’s because I danced since I was young. I think dance is the first thing I worked hard for in my life. I started dancing since I was 8 and I have been dancing for more than half my life. I don’t even remember what I did before that and I only have fragmented memories of those times. The only proper memories I have are of me dancing since I was 8. But looking at myself still dancing, I don’t think I will change. I relieve stress that way a lot. Also, I think people think that they’re the same. I think I am exactly the same but for people who look at me will think that I changed. It is different based on the point of view the other person is standing at. I think I will be the same if I were to be born again. I won’t change. But I think I changed a little on the outside.
Q: Do you feel burdened by others’ expectations?
Kai: Truthfully… I don’t. Instead, I am the kind to put the burden on myself. I should be doing better, this kind of burden. Instead of thinking that I have to do better because someone else is watching, I think that those thoughts should be put aside and I have to be the happiest. Because then, when people watch me, they will be happy too. So I think it is best for me to enjoy myself as I go.
Q: What are you most afraid of?
Kai: What I am most afraid of? Losing my life goal. I think it is important to think that something has to be there tomorrow, because if I lose that [vision], I will become unhappy. Because every hour in a day is very precious.
Q: Is there something you find important whereas others will find insignificant?
Kai: A lot of things. (Laughs) Something that others regard as insignificant while I regard it with importance… I can’t really say if I am to think of something like this right away. Because the values each person has are different.
Q: Are you the kind to believe in chance or the inevitable?
Kai: I don’t really know, I’ve never thought about this seriously. Whether it is chance or fate, they’re both good. Chance is the inevitable and the inevitable is chance. If I were to determine chance as something, it would be something that is fun as for the inevitable… I’m not so sure about the inevitable. I hope it’s not something that is already set. Because that way, life will be fun.
Q: Among things that cannot be seen, what do you think is the most valuable?
Kai: Happiness! (Laughs) Ah, there are many valuable things. When we were young, we thought about these things a lot. Why is it me? Why am I looking at this thing like this, why am I me? In elementary school, things that were seen through these pair of eyes were really fascinating and in middle school, I was really curious as to why I am me. For me, I can’t sleep at night if I have worries. So when I’m alone, I start off thinking about things and then my imagination takes flight as I start to think about useless things. During those times, I have those thoughts. I think it is most important that I was born as myself.
Q: What would be something that you wish to have if you can have one thing in the world forever?
Kai: Memories. If I were to be born again, I wish to have my memories from this life. The good things, the bad things, everything. Won’t I find the bad things funny if I were to think about them when I am born again?