I know you do....alright so this will be quick cuz I'm pretty beat. My kids were good today except for my last class...seriously, I think they all had lobotomies because they were not feeling English (or me) today. Granted it was 9pm on a Friday and being at school for 12 hours would piss me off, too. Can't say I blame them at all. Even I was ready to bounce. Here's a rundown of some random things I've seen around my neighborhood:
1) Unapologetically-offensive nose picking...I can't even tell you how awful this is. One woman had her HAND shoved so far up her nose, seemed like she was trying to pull a good reason out of her brain. Why, it's almost as bad as the time I saw a pimply faced employee in a Parisian bakery picking his boogers. And flinging it into my pain au chocolat. What, pray tell, is so MONUMENTALLY CHALLENGING about using a tissue?!?!?
2) Toilet paper is used in place of napkins at restaurants...and in general. Yeah, a big ole roll of TP is hangin out on the table. It's going to take some getting used to that's for sure. I can't help but think to myself "Wait, did you just wipe your butt with that???" I went ahead and bought paper towels for my apartment though. Some habits die hard. I'd buy napkins too if I could find 'em...yes, Americans have different paper products for everything...TP for your bunghole (sorry, couldnt resist...i grew up with Beavis & Butthead..sue me), napkins for your mouth, tissues for your nose, paper towels for spills and bigger stuff, etc. To me, that is normal...and admittedly, the result of unabashed consumerism and capitalism but oh well...
3) SPITTING!! Dear God...I can't even begin to describe the chills that run up my spine when I hear that all-too-familiar-I'm-about-to-hock-a-loogie sound. Unfortunately for me, spitting seems to be another norm here. And it drives me completely insane. It wouldn't be so bad if people only spat outside but oh no, people LOOOOOOOOVE to spit INSIDE hallways and elevators, too!!! Pretty much anywhere is acceptable to spit...and I can't stand it. My biggest pet peeves are in fact spitting and dog poo. They are both equally bad. Most people know that I have a dog poo radar and I'm quickly developing one for spit bombs, too.
4) So last night I'm walking home from dinner and I see two middle-aged men holding hands. They have business suits on and nicely trimmed hair. They look nice. And they're even rather tall. Ok, so I put 1 and 1 together and figured I was looking at a nice gay Korean couple. Awesome! No problem there...I thought it was great they're so progressive since homosexuality goes against their Christian/Buddhist/traditional Korean values. I thought "Now THIS is a couple who just doesn't care! Screw society!" Blah blah blah....so today at work, I tell Steve about what I saw. His reply?
They're not gay.
UM.....EXCUSE ME? I know what I saw! New York City teaches you how to spot gay thats for sure. So, drawing on my Western point of reference, two men holding hands = couple. ESPECIALLY holding hands....right? WRONG! Steve explained that it's quite normal for straight, male friends to hold hands. They do it all the time. It's not sexual at all. Quite frankly, I'm still quite baffled by this phenomena. I mean, I just cannot even IMAGINE....I cannot even FATHOM this happening back home. Absolutely NOT! So needless to say, I will keep an eye out for this. Steve said the only way to tell if a man is gay by hearing him talk. So this is me, readjusting my narrow-minded lens...rearranging my point of view...developing a new angle....thats what I'm here for.
Alright thats it for now...I'm suddenly drawing a blank. I'm headed to Seoul again tomorrow probably so I'm sure I'll have more stories for you! :) Until then...<3 J