I go halfway around the world and what do I continue to buy? SOCKS.

June 19, 2010 at 8:44 AM Leave a comment

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I’m aware of the fact that I’m missing one.

THIS IS A REALLY LONG POST. JUST A WARNING.

The sock cart ahjummas were annoyed with me digging through the piles to find ONE Sandara Park. I was unsuccessful. Why does she have to be so dang popular? *Sigh. I have a complete Big Bang collection, halfway complete 2PM collection, a new 2AM collection and now 3/4 of 2NE1. EHHHH so bothersome. Maybe I should stop with the collections here. If MBLAQ comes out with socks I’ll buy multiple pairs of each. :> :> But SNSD would take months for me to track all of them down. Super Junior, years.

Maybe I should look for Jo-kwon socks the next time I got to Dongdemun. I didn’t buy the Jin-won or the Seul-long…

We watched Family 떳다 last Sunday, and my mom thought Jo-Kwon was HILARIOUS. He was pretty funny for the record. So now whenever we see an ad with him, she’s like, “THAT’S THE CRAZY GUY ON FAMILY 떻다!!” Hahaha…

You knows those kids that are interviewed on Disney Channel for the crazy collections of random items they have? I could definitely go on that show for my kpop singer socks. HAHAHAHA. Watch them become auctioned items one day…jk probably not.

I do have good reasoning in buying socks. I dislike most open-toed shoes; flip-flops gross me out. I’m pretty sure 95% of my friends have never seen my bare feet. And Korean socks are surprisingly good quality. I bought tons last year, and they’re stronger than the socks my mom bought at Costco. And they don’t fall down the back of your ankle when you’re walking. No blisters is always a plus.

Now they have 1박 2일 socks! But I can’t find Seung-gi.. ehhh. Only Kang Ho-dong and some weirdo person. The one that looks like an alien.

Anyways, this post was originally going to be about something else, but I found the socks today so I decided to start it showing off my (almost) complete 2NE1 collection! “eh eh eh eh eh eh eh eh-yeh 2NE1”.

Anyways, the REAL purpose of this post.

Ah-HEM.

Being a straight-up foreigner -it was confirmed with the people at Namdemun Market tried to speak Japanese, Chinese, and then English to us- you can’t help but observe interesting things a country does. Two posts ago was about how Koreans are so efficient. Borderline annoying. (There was this news special we watched on TV about how this Korean mom-and-pop restaurant reused a certain kind of herbal bark in their beef fragrant soup broth, and people would suck on them, etc. THAT’S JUST GROSS).

But there are somethings that don’t really have to do with efficiency, that I just find hilarious, awkward, or just plain disturbing. But in a definitely G-rated manner, mind you. :>

So I’ve compiled a list -I feel like I’ve typed this statement numerous times- about these Korean idiosyncrasies which I scribbled onto my Korean speaking test practice paper. Halfway through the list I remembered that I have to turn this paper back in. Ahh, too late. I just decided to finish it.

Let’s start with things that are currently “IN”. As in, at least 4 people out of every 10 contribute to this “IN” list somehow.

  1. Acid washed skinny jeans. The interesting thing is that not many people here wear destroyed jeans. I like that. But they sure do love their acid washed skinny jeans. Guys and girls, teenagers and…children. I kind of like the look, granted I don’t think I can fit into skinny jeans here, but if you have the bod -and the rest of your clothes go with it-they look kinda cool.
  2. True Religion jeans. For all those who arn’t wearing skinny jeans. True Religions seem to be gaining in popularity.
  3. Justin Bieber. Bieber Fever is taking over Korea. Run for cover. In the popular mall COEX, Justin’s baby-face is proudly on display in their biggest window. I nearly screamed. Yesterday for the game (Park Ji-sung, I still love ya) we went to some fancy Pepsi-co meeting and they played “Baby” on repeat. Do these people understand who he truly is? (As in, an adorable five-year-old with an adorable singing voice who is all-over to cute to be a famous singer).
  4. New Balances. New Balances are the new Converses. Ok, maybe not that big yet, but they’re gaining popularity. It makes me even want to get a pair. They’re really cute here, idk why the States only have like…3 colors. *I’ve learned in the past that trends from Korea come Stateward in a few years. So maybe I’ll be ahead of the fashion trend when I come back?? HAH.
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  6. Long Champ Bags: OMG SO MANY PEOPLE HAVE THEM HERE. Not just women. For something that looks kinda plain, they’re actually kind of expensive. Like over $100 expensive. They look like you’d pay $25 or so for them. If they were $25 I’d consider buying one. They’re quite large.
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  8. Balenciaga Bags. I had to do research to find out what these bags were called, haha. Not quite as popular as the Long Champs, but getting more popular amongst Seoul’s…higher paid consumers. Each bag retails for…HAHAHAHAHA. around $1,500. For the smaller ones. Maybe the ones the Seoulites carry around are fakes. They have fakes of everything else. They even have fake TOMS. Didn’t realize you could make shoes even cheaper than TOMS.
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  10. These interesting-looking Nike high(er) heeled sneakers. I think they’re kinda cute. I don’t know if I’m hip enough for them, but they’re cute.
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  12. ANYTHING “well-being”. If it’s well-being or organic, it’s popular. Today my sister and I saw a sign for well-being donuts. We didn’t know donuts could be a well-being food.

I could see myself catching onto some of these trends. I do like the New Balance shoes and the Nike shoes. The Balenciaga bag is nice, but I don’t know if my conscience would allow me such a purchase.

Besides Korea’s tendency of making trends and passing them onto other countries, Korea has it’s own fair share of idiosyncrasies that haven’t really caught on anywhere else. I love finding out random quirks about places that make that place unique.

  1. World maps have Europe and Africa on the left, the America’s on the right, and Asia in the middle. I don’t know if only the US has it with the America’s on the left and Asia on the right, but it was interesting for me. The States do so many other things differently it wouldn’t surprise me.
  2. Translucent shirts. Business men seem to wear a uniform outfit consisting of slacks, dress shoes, and a light-colored translucent shirt. Because the shirts are translucent, they have to wear white undershirts to cover themselves. And because the shirts are translucent, you can see the white undershirts. Why don’t you just wear darker shirts and not have to wear an undershirt? There is probably a reasoning behind this that makes perfect sense, but I don’t know why they do this.
  3. Men working the female department store shoe sections. And young men at that. Maybe young men sell female shoes better? And they strap the shoes on for you. I don’t know if I would want that job. What if some woman had some jank smellin’ feet or something. Ew.
  4. Old people and mountain hiking. There’s a mountain near our place, and everyday when I walk to school there are tens of older people with their hiking gear heading towards the mountain entrance. Hiking is a great form of exercise -I plan to do some while I’m here- but what I don’t understand is why they wear so many clothes. Most of the time it’s in the high 80’s, so I like to wear shorts. But they show up with long pants, zipper jackets, hats, scarves… Again, I’m sure there is some reasoning behind this, but this I don’t understand. Maybe it’s cold up on the mountain?
  5. Koreans really like mayonnaise and spam. The put mayonnaise on everything. Pastries, pizza, toast, etc. Mayonnaise pastries taste kinda funky. I’ve grown up (kind of) eating spam, so this isn’t too new for me. Some people are entirely grossed out by it, but if you eat it in small amounts (my mom puts little chunks in kimchi jigae) it tastes ok. But when you cut a whole slice and fry it for a sandwich, that is kinda…canned meat overload.
  6. Not many people wear sunglasses. You’re constantly going in and out of sunlight so it would be a bother to take them off and put them back on. I don’t wear sunglasses unless we’re walking outside for a long time. And Seoul sun is nothing compared to Texas sun.
  7. Skinny people don’t really hide it. Some people here are SO SKINNY. It’s scary. But it seems like everyone eats well. I haven’t encountered any skinny people that don’t eat well. In fact, they all seem to eat more than I do. But as for their clothing, besides looser school uniforms, they seem to wear quite a lot of tight fitting clothing. Sometimes back home really skinny guys like to hide the fact that they have chicken legs. But here, skin tight… guys are like half as wide as me…ugh.
  8. Silence is not golden. It’s kind of scary. After Korea lost to Argentina (still love you PJS) we were heading home on the subway and it was SILENT. It was relatively empty too. It was so scary. So we hurried home. No one was drinking. No one was partying. The next morning I had my class, and my teacher’s car’s side mirrors were broken off. This is what happens when Koreans get angry. Silent terror.
  9. No one uses a child leash. I don’t really approve of them, but I haven’t seen one since we got here. Perhaps they think they are inhumane? They don’t even leash their dogs here. Dogs run wild.
  10. Plastic surgery is cheaper than a gym membership. I’m not even kidding. Liposuction is cheaper than a gym membership for the amount of time it would take you to get rid of your fat. My cousin is a celebrity fitness trainer, and a down-payment for a good gym can be in the thousands of dollars. And monthly fees into the hundreds of dollars. Dollars not Won.
  11. Highschoolers visible at every hour of the day. The kids are still in school here, and you see them mostly before and after school walking around with their school uniforms on. But the puzzling thing is that you can see them between the before and after school times walking around. And in between the in-between times. My cousin tells me that they have something of an off-campus lunch time/break, but after that they go back. Why is it then that I see kids wandering around all the time? Are they skipping? Maybe I should just ask one of them why they never seem to be in school.
  12. Pointing with the middle finger. I’ve grown up with this, sometime I do it to, when I’m pointing to something on the computer screen or something, not when I’m pointing at someone. Foreigners might think it’s awkward. Actually, the origins of the middle finger were not entirely repulsive. Back in the times of frequent huge-bow usage, rivals would face one another and flash their middle finger to each other. The middle finger was the primary finger used in pulling back the bow to fire, so if they still had their middle finger, it meant they still had the ability to shoot an arrow, and thus still had the ability to kick yo bootay.
  13. Guys carry their girlfriend’s purses for them. Kind of interesting. Most guys I know from the States would refuse to do anything of the sort.

This post is ridiculously long. Sorry. This is the product of three-day’s compilation. Please don’t get angry at me for writing so much. I need to go study for my test on monday. -.-

kthanksbye.

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Entry filed under: Everyday ramblings..

It’s a pride issue. LUH-SHI-AH. (러시아)

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