Showing posts from June, 2005

김밥 (kimbap)

Mcdonald's is to America as a Kimbap house is to Korea. Except for the fact the Kimbap is good for you, and the prices are much more reasonable.

An inexpensive, tasty treat at the bargain price of ₩1,000 (about $1.00) a roll.


Beneath a long veil of low-ceiling, gray clouds Korea waits in the shadow of Jangma.  Today officially marks the beginning of the country’s rainy season.  The days are as dark as dusk, the humidity has uncomfortably stabilized in the mid-eighty percentile, and haircare has become something of a nightmare.

Coming from the night culture of bar employment, I am used to quiet days.  Never waiting for a dressing room at stores on Michigan Ave., being one of five people at a matinee, seldom passing another person on walks through the park . . . in Gwangju, a city so densely populated, you would think that these things would be a rarity.   Until Jangma, they were.   Since the temperatures and humidity have soared, the world rests indoors.  Streets, businesses, parks, they are all vacant.  An eerie silence drags the day kicking and screaming through sporadic downpours and light mists.

Like a wonderfully alien sunrise, imminent nightfall seemingly peels the city from its hiding, thrusting the …

Settling in

It has been an eventful week, so today has been a wonderfully lazy, sleep-in Sunday. A load of laundry quietly grinds behind the growling blues of Tom Waits while I type and Alex paints. tTe world outside our open windows is hushed. We are enjoying the stillness, so I will stop typing about it.
A surefire way to ruin tranquility is to notice it, and any moment now the neighbors upstairs will start with their obnoxiously loud sex thus waking the baby next door whose mother has decided the remedy to an upset child is frying meat and turning on all available lights.  It’s pretty humorous, the domino effect of sounds around our corner of the building.  After the baby’s meat-fry comes a series of slamming windows that trigger yapping-squeaks from tiny dogs which in turn wakes their owners (more lights).  The yapping-squeaks turn into yelps as the football-sized terriers are tossed, bounced or “reasoned” with.  Once awake the dog owners decide a meat-fry or some other sustenance is in order…

Food Obsession

I bought tomatoes for the first time in 7 weeks yesterday!

$5 t-shirts

This one goes out to ross. . . 

Remember when we started resale shopping together? You love the t-shirts with strange sayings and pictures. Well, at E*mart, they have sales bins with $5 t-shirts that are artfully fun. The artwork is decent, but the comical part is the poorly translated and inappropriate English that makes up a lot of these shirts. It isn’t at all uncommon to see children (ages 6-13) sporting shirts that are emblazoned with the F-bomb, “shit”, “damn”, “porn”, and terrible grammar (“Is there any something to play?”). For all these shirts would seemingly have going against them, they are still pretty sweet.

Every trip to E*mart is an investigation into weekly shipments in an attempt to locate a gem. Thus far, 2 shirts have made the cut. They lack poor grammar, but have cool graphics. The point being (finally), I have found Ross’ t-shirt heaven, and am on the lookout for his ideal shirt. Until the shirt is found, check out the pics of my finds.

The quest for the perfect $5 t…

Long Weekend Recap

The weekend passes somewhat uneventfully. Could it be we’re finally at ease in the east? The following is a detail-lacking recap of our nothing-special, long weekend.
Friday night begins late, our class ending from anywhere between 10:00 – 10:30 pm. We amble through the walkways overgrown with weeds and popsicle wrappers. Should we stay or should we go to the coast? The PROS: neither of us has been to the yellow sea, the weather is beautiful, it would be (by our estimates) a relaxing escape from the crowds of Gwangju. The CONS: it’s a holiday weekend, we’ve learned that everyone is going to the beach. Staying in Gwangju seemed right not only because of the masses of people traveling to the coast, but mostly because of the masses of people traveling to the coast. The yellow sea will have to wait. Friday turns out to be a perfect evening for cards and a Chilean cabernet sauvignon.

Saturday morning is a sleepy one, probably due to the fact that Friday night ended late. The languid day pass…

Updates Soon!

$5 t-shirtsconstruction cranes and dangling cars (a blog in pictures)7-facereality tv recaprocketships, ferlinghetti, and an aptitude test

Thursday's Been Worthwhile

The rain has been wonderful, easing the temperatures dramatically. It was supposed to be 90 degrees today, but is has barely made it to the upper 70’s. Refreshing beyond explanation.
Thanks to the downpour this morning the world was a little quieter.

I love thunderstorms. Regardless of where I am, storms always remind me of Beaver Island. Last night while walking through an empty park in the rain, the damp trees and grass had the smell of the island. A peaceful respite from the usual GO-GO-GO pace and loud sounds of Gwangju.