Archive for November, 2008


Five Months. Holy Shit.

November 30, 2008

This is another one of those “cute things that confuse me” (term coined by Mr. Fai) posts. I can’t help it. I just can’t help it.


If anyone in my family still reads this: I have no idea what they sell. I have no idea what a condom is or what it is used for. And I did not go into this particular establishment to find out, nor have I ever bought any items that would be ever found in this store. Nor have I ever listened to a sexual education class ever. As far as I know, these things are banana hats.

To everyone else: So adorable! I especially like the little happy >o< sperm on the bottom right. Also sold in this store were: Pikachu shaped condoms (I guess “gotta catch ’em all” = catching little those little swimmers), elephant thunk thong undies, and “brack” condoms for “brack” people.


This of course, was in Hongdae. Where I also went to the Street Fair this weekend and looked at little floral print wallets… until I noticed that they were, indeed, femmine sanitary napkins. I also bought a set of postcards of lightbulbs with faces. No reason.

In Insadong, there also was this exhibit:


Bad. Ass.

Also, I feel like there’s a Chuck Norris joke here that I’m not lame enough to tell.

Other cute things that confuse me: my students. I’m procrastinating right now. I’m supposed to be writing evaluations that say things like “blah blah blah is a good student, but never speaks in class and needs focus” rather than what I really would say, like “blah blah blah is a horrible student, never shuts up. I am not entirely sure he knows the English alphabet.” One of these days I’m going to write a school post (filled with pictures of monsters that I had them draw for me because I was feeling depressed). So, wait for that.

In other news, I have been staving off the loneliness of the weekends (which admittedly, there has been a lot of) by hanging out in cafes, writing one (of four) diaries/journals/notebooks, drinking 6,000 won cups of tea (in a country where 5,000 won gets you a meal + multiple side dishes), and listening to New Yorker podcasts. Also, been abandoning Bupyeong for Hongdae a lot. Is dancing in basement club to “Love Will Tear Us Apart” with a bunch of hipsters at four in the morning cliche or comforting? I think both. Also, went to Sinchon today and got good burritos. Where they really good or am I just forgetting the taste? Who knows.

I can’t believe I’ve been here for five months already. It seems like everything and nothing has happened all at the same time. It has been very strange. I blinked and it was December. Maybe I’ll blink again and it’ll be time for me to come back? To what, I wonder.


Toy Instrument Band in Hongdae

November 19, 2008

Another Hongdae street music video, this one during the book festival that was about a month ago.

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But, I will say that our hypothetical toy instrument band will be much better.


Okay, here’s the video now.

November 17, 2008

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(insert cute pun about Hongdae)

November 17, 2008

If I could live anywhere in Seoul (or in Korea, really), I would live in Hongdae.

Last weekend:

– Saw a parading capoeira troupe.

– Went to a “gallery-cafe” and talked to a Korean artist and drank 6 cups of coffee, worked on some stuff.


– Heard a friend of a friend spin as a DJ in a club (um, for awhile, before I was uh, incapacitated)

– Bought some really nice boots.

I was going to write a longer entry, but it’s so cold in my apartment; ass cold, balls cold (if I had any), soul cold. I also have a cold and I can barely type.


Autumn Music Mix

November 17, 2008

[mixwit_mixtape wid=”ebbe3b89ba01a4fabb8a1c21a142e6d3″ pid=”a735ccd0c5377bce92add703e055b253″ width=”426″ height=”327″ center=”true”]

This is to make up for all the kpop posts. Composed out of songs heard around the apartment, suggestions from friends, around. Sorry, did not include Berlin’s “The Metro,” because I couldn’t find it.


Things to Warm Your Pre-Winter Nights

November 7, 2008

Yeah yeah, it’s cold, you’ve heard me mention this before. Here are a few of my favorite things to keep me warm. Of course this is an incomplete list, I am overlooking a view err, obvious examples, wink wink, nudge nudge (this being the nifty heating through hot water in the floors system, naturally).

Anyway, ahem, moving on…

1. Soondubu jigae – otherwise known as hot and spicy tofu soup in a boiling stoneware bowl. Delicious! I first had this in Koreatown in LA, during my wintertime pilgrimages to BCD (P.S. the number 6 with the dumplings is the best). I think I still prefer BCD soondubu, even though I know that’s blasphemy (this is perhaps because of the BCD’s close proximity to the Wiltern and of course, the ability to go to BCD and Tito’s Tacos in one night). But anyway, actual South Korean soondubu jigae does not disappoint. I recommend putting the soup on top of your rice before eating to prevent any burnt mouths (oh but it is such a sweet pain).


2. My Yellow Totoro Sweater – This + listening to the Go! Team makes for pretty awesome nights. Also, I could buy the UCLA hoodie I never bought my freshman year in the Bupyeong Underground.


3. My In the Mood for Love dvd – Admittingly, I just wanted to post this picture. SO HOT. Hot damn!



Autumn Leaves and Leaving.

November 6, 2008

It’s the beginning of November, and everyone I know is talking about quitting (or at least entertaining thoughts of departure). Sometimes it feels like people treat teaching in Korea like prison, everyone’s always asking, “how long have you been here/how long have you got?” “Man… when I get out, I’m gonna…” It isn’t that bad most of the time, but I guess it’s just the cold air making people feel trapped and the lost afternoons spent teaching grammar (some of which you don’t have whys of, and just wing it). Most people see this as a bridge to somewhere else, to save up money to get rid of credit card debit/college loans/grad school/one big Asian romp around the world, and so the emphasis is on the future. Seeing how as I have this unflattering habit of not having any plans and doing whatever, I always just end up looking forward to weekends (and end up getting continually disappointed by them). Maybe I should think about what I’m gonna do when I get out…. But right now, I’m a little stuck on the transience of it all; what place will Korea have in my memory; what place will I have in the memories of people I’ve met here?

Sometimes I feel like I’m not being myself here; that some how the way people knew me back home, is buried under this cartoon version of me, built by other people’s expectations of me, and the myth I have of who I want to be/what I am/blah blah blah societal expectation blah blah blah. It’s probably cost me some things here. Also, apparently I’m “adorable.” LA People: thoughts? (P.S. I miss you all with frightening fierceness. It is horrible.)

Anyway– ew, when did this journal get all livejournally?

Let’s talk about something stupid.

Question: does the thought of manatees make you sad? They make me incredibly sad. I guess it’s because I think they’re the sweet oafish fat kids of the sea. And get maimed by boat propellers. Maybe that’s the way to get to the pitying part of my heart (the part with the strings that gets tugged): fat kids + boat maiming.

Also: A word on Korean persimmons. They have the normal kind here, the hard orange cinnamony-tasting ones with the apple-like hardness (until they get ripe and sticky)… but they also have these things:


They’re kind of persimmon-y in taste, but seemingly trapped in the body (and have the consistency of) a tomato. Well, except for the persimmon leaves (what I like to call the persimmon’s hat). I don’t know how I feel about them. Apparently if you freeze them overnight and eat them like sherbet, it’s delicious.