Monday, 13 October 2008

Pictures and pictures and pictures and dumb commentary.

My friend Myungshin has magic hands: look what they can do! She can also make them pass through solid objects.

Met this guy out in Shinchon.   
Can't remember his name though. Might've been Brian.
Somebody has the job of writing those t-shirts.

And I want their job.
But bad.  REeeeeeel bad.

Met this guy out in Shinchon too. He found a hot dog stand he, uh, really liked. Street food. Aah, street food. He said it was nice: thick, juicy, and just spicy enough.  I...uh... don't eat hot dogs.

The bad economy's trickling down to the little guy now: those cheapie 3300 won samgyupsal places are now patchworking their signs to cover the budget.

Went to a bar.  It was rough.
You'd think, though, especially in a place like Hongdae, that they'd check SOMEBODY, just SOMEONE to veto signs like this one: "Club DD: We got all black music"

There's a bar called Boobi Boobi in Hongdae, too.  It has another meaning in Korea, but I don't have the background to give an exact translation.  It DOES seem like it must be a cool name for a bar, though.There's also a bar named "Ho Bar."  In fact, there are TWO of them...and more (three...maybe even four) in Hongdae, and another two, maybe three in Jongno.  These bars are a running gag to pretty much every foreigner in Korea.  'nuff said.
Hyori has another soju poster.  Those airbrushers are getting more and more involved in these soju ads. . . it's at the point now where they're not even trying to make it look like an actual person anymore.  It's like cartoon Hyori standing behind a cardboard frame.

Went to a little arboretum near my house with Girlfriendoseyo.  It was gorgeous: the sun was out shining through the leaf canopy and setting little trees aflame with sunlight.Purty.
Girlfriendoseyo made a friend.

Seen on a sign near Sinchon station:
??And English school where you learn to talk dirty??

Saw these in City Hall Subway Station.  A Korean artist had a really interesting take on the interactions between old Korean culture and modern pop culture.

Finally: a soju ad advertising that Soju is "Non-GMO".

Nope.  No genetically modified chemists were involved in mixing cooking alcohol with MSG and water to make this soju.
Advertising soju as non GMO is just weird to me -- isn't that kind of like selling "New Marlborough. . . 100% organic!" -- I mean, so what?  It's still soju.  That's like selling me a rottweiler and saying, "Don't worry.  This one only attacks adults without provocation, so your kids'll be safe."  Big deal.  


Brian said...

So now you've got celebrity cameos in your posts? This winter break since I won't be around much I think I'll just have somebody come in and remix my old posts. Korea Beat can rap over them.

Roboseyo said...

battle of the blogger gimmicks? perish the thought! just wait until I start up a sock blog and manufacture a rivalry, the way conspiracy theorists think Pawi was actually the Marmot trolling on his own board to get his hits up.

come up to seoul and you can be on my blog, too.

see here for more.

Kevin said...

Based on the Superman-versus-Batman ssireum scenario, I'm guessing that that folk artist is a fan of Frank Miller... who is himself a fan of Asian art.

When does cultural cross-pollination begin to resemble the swirl of flushing toilet water?


Anonymous said...

For the Boobi Boobi reference:

It's a style of dancing to hip hop or club music that involves the guy and girl being in VERY close physical contact. I remember the terms 'freaking' and 'grinding' being used while I was in high school (mid-to-late 1990s) to describe something similar.

The name of the dance comes from a song by Banana Girl and her album cover gives a hint as to what the dance looks like. There's also the music video on YouTube.

Unrelated to hip gyrations, I just finished a write-up about the Gansong Art Museum at my blog here if anyone is interested. It's only open four weeks out of the year, and next week will be the last time to see the artwork until next spring. I would definitely recommend checking it out if you (plural) have the time!

the Korean said...

samedi's definition is more or less correct, but boobi boobi has a simpler, innocuous meaning: it's an onomatopoeia describing rubbing motion, like rubbing eyes or cheecks.

Anonymous said...


Updated my entry to include directions to the museum! (Thanks for reminding me about that.) We went in a car and I wasn't paying much attention at the time, but the links are included now. :)

Anonymous said...

The Korean,

Thanks for the clarification. I'd only encountered the expression in relation to the dance and wasn't aware of it's onomatopoeic use. Hearing that it describes a rubbing motion sure helps to explain why it's used for that particular style of dancing.

Otto Silver said...

I have often walked past the HyoRi poster and wondered why they would pay someone to do that to a Photoshop job like that, but I will never he able to look at it again without thinking she is standing behind a cut-out.

The Analesson featured on a while back. It is not often that Korea makes it on to the site.

The guy with the hot dog? Isn't that? No, it can't be. He would never pose for a photo like that, would he?

Foreigner Joy said...

Roboseyo.... do you have any fear that by taking a picture of something like a sign in Korea is taking it out of context?

In my hagwon training the the guy showed us a sign that was taken in Korea. It was funny...but the image made people think something bad about Koreans. When really the sign was just an advertisement.

The point of his lecture is that a lot of people take images from Korea and put them up and say something silly about it. And that it eventually grows this impression on westerners that Korea is this messed up society.

Now that I have been here I would say that Korean signs, are yes funny. Especially when they play on English.

But I wonder what affect our taking it out of context and laughing at has on Korea's image?

Perhaps none. ?

Roboseyo said...

Hmm. Interesting question, Joy.

Interesting enough that I'm going to put that question up on Hub of Sparkle, in fact. Go join in there, if you like.

Brian said...

Maybe, but I think the bad English does a good enough job of making Korea look bad. I don't think it makes Koreans or Asians look stupid, but it makes their English look terrible. Because it is. I mean, my Korean sucks, too, so does my German. But then again I don't go around trying to make money off those languages, or trying to misrepresent those cultures by badly screwing up those languages. If Koreans, or expats in Korea, don't want their English mocked, make some effort to get it right. Unfortunately, a combination of pride and indifference prevent that from happening. I get that cultures all over the world make languages their own---although we get laughed at should we make the slightest mistake in Korean---but it's disrespectful to the larger language community of English speakers to pay no regard to how they use the language. Don't get me started.

Sorry, Rob Dog, I can't post on Korea Sparkle, so thus it's here.

Foreigner Joy said...

I would correct myself, and say that your pics are in context because you made commentary related to its time and place.

My other words are over at

Anyways PEACE!