Being a K-pop stan in Nigeria is hard work that we actually love. I mean, what’s not to love about people who take their time to create wonderful music for their audience? Inject it. However, there are some struggles that almost make us lose morale; like when your favourite group does a shout out and forgets to mention the Nigerian fans — e dey pain, but we dey gallant. If you can relate to any of these, you deserve one small glass of soju.
1. Learning Korean because the subtitles aren’t accurate
Nigerian K-pop fans can relate to how much it sucks when K-pop groups release original content without English subtitles, which means you have to either start learning Korean or go consult with the great Duolingo owl for an interpretation. On the bright side, you can now speak Korean if you ever get to travel.
2. You are too broke to afford merch
Every K-pop fan knows what it’s like to die a little inside when you check your favourite group’s merch and find out it’s expensive as hell. What’s even worse is that some people ship it to Nigeria and proceed to sell it at 10x the original price.
3. You might never attend a concert or fan meeting
With how expensive in-house flights cost, not to talk of flights outside Nigeria, we’ll support our favourite groups by watching their videos and cheering. Because what else can we do?
4. People think that you are weird
People make fun of you for spending your time listening to music in another language, and you’re always catching stray bullets on Twitter. What they don’t understand is that a K-pop group probably saved your life at some point. You can’t help but stan.
5. You feel bad about not getting as much recognition
You might make videos getting people to stream their music, comment under their posts, and talk about your favourite group to anyone that cares to listen. But when they give their fans shout outs, the Nigerian fans are usually forgotten… It sucks sha, but we move.
6. You have considered making a DIY photo card
You’ve spent a lot of time on Pinterest and have considered just printing their pictures on paper and laminating it because the actual photocards are too expensive. Don’t worry. We are not judging you.
7. You spend all your data on YouTube
You are way too busy watching all their interviews and reality shows to be on any other app. You don’t get enough sleep because you use the YouTube night bonus to download them in bulk. The struggle is real.
8. Making peace with the fact that your favourite group or solo artist will never tour Africa
Even if they perform in Africa, it’ll most likely be in South Africa. And except you are earning a comfortable salary or have parents that care about your interests, there’s no way you’ll be able to attend.
9. Paying an arm and a leg for the “Korean experience” in Nigeria
Just because you want to experience Korean food, they’ll almost empty your bank account.
Is being a K-pop fan worth it? Yes, absolutely.