Kommunity and Kollectivism

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Here we have Seoul, central Seoul, immediately after the country and its people were liberated from an oppressive, decades-long Japanese colonization.  Around this time, Korea was one of the poorest nations on the planet, but near 70 years of non-stop foreign aid and handouts (in various forms) later, and South Korea is now one of the wealthiest nations on the planet!  Hooray!!  Obviously, clearly – I mean it’s a real nobrainer – the days of the kind of third-world conditions and slum-level housing are long, long gone, right?  No way people still live like they did in the picture above, right?

Wrong.

 

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Vast swaths of the Korean population still live like the peasants did 70 years before.  Here we have a slum (one of many) located behind some train tracks…

* Note:  This picture may or may not have been mislabeled by several websites as being taken at Guyrong village in Korea while others identify it as Indian.  In the event that this is actually a picture of an Indian slum, I’m throwing in a few bonus pictures from Korean slums:

guryongslum slum6 slum5 slum4 slum3 slum2

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… but this is a scene from right in the heart of the city.  Klowns build “luxury” (hahaha) apartment buildings along major roads, lining them with tall towers that hide the squalor behind.  Punch it up on Google Earth.  These pictures are how much of the population live.  It looks like a Manilla slum.  It looks like any other slum in any other 3rd-world, war-ravaged, economically-destroyed shithole.  It’s very fucking far from Gangnam Style.  These dilapidated shacks are often put together with scrap metal and plastic sheets.  Cinder blocks hold ropes in place that are basically load-bearing ropes keeping the roof up.  Crudely-spliced wires dangle within reach of children from walls and ceilings.  Floors are plastic stickers.  Walls are moldy plaster and quickly-poured cement spider-webbed with cracks.

It is an absolute fucking miracle that more buildings don’t collapse, though there are certainly enough of those already.

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Between the shacks and along the tower-lined main roads one can enjoy some of the worst-paved sidewalks in existence.  Now this sidewalk is in a brand-new courtyard.  Work was completed here less than a year ago.  Remarkably the rest of the surface (you know, where there aren’t gaping holes that go un-repaired for over a month) is even enough to walk on, but in many places, the sidewalks look like there has been a 8.0+ earthquake recently.

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If you are able to walk on the sidewalk without falling on your face due to a jutting brick, errant stone or sinkhole, try not to carry anything you might need to dispose of.  In true, first-world fashion, Klown does not have public trash cans on the streets.  Finding one is extremely rare – the four-leafed-Klover.   Generally Klowns just throw their food garbage and other trash in a loose pile.  The above picture features a large, communal-use bag.  No container mind you, just the bag.  The person who placed this bag is what you might call a “Kommunity Konscious Klown” – this is extent of a Klown’s capacity to extend respect to his or her community and environment… a trash bag left to overflow.

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Now this bag was tied up.  That’s advanced for Klown.  Of course, the idea of an animal-and-accident-proof trash receptacle, like.. oh… I don’t know… a fucking garbage can?  Is far too advanced for this third-world hole.  If it isn’t mongrel (oft abandoned) dogs ripping the bags to shreds, it is the armies of street cats that litter Korea.  One good thing about the street cats is that they keep the rat population at bay, which would otherwise be at bubonic plague-era levels.

Nobody will clean this mess up.  It will be allowed to blow freely in the wind until it ends up in some infant’s stroller.

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This is “hip” and “modern” Hongdae in Seoul.  This is the awesome modern utopia of Klown.  This is where tourists are told to go.  It looks like a ghetto… because it is a fucking ghetto in all but GDP.

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This is the Broken Window theory taken to a whole new level.  These piles of disease-bearing, rotting food garbage are in front of the places where these people live and work.  This is what happens when living in squalor and filth move past “tolerable” and into the realm of “expected” and even “cultural”.  From the first picture to this, the mentality is the same, though the ability and means have changed.  This isn’t filth because there is no other way, this is filth by choice due to a long familiarity and now comfort level with filth.  Nation-wide.

chilpobeach6

GarbageBeachSmEven the public beaches aren’t safe.  Nor the parks.  Nor the playgrounds.

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Because why put in the minimally-required effort to flatten some boxes when you can just carelessly toss them into the street in a giant pile, right?  I mean, sooner or later some desperate, destitute 80-something Korean with a cart will come, flatten and haul away your trash to make a buck or two a day, right?  In the meantime, fuck everyone else who isnt you.  Fuck them right to hell.

Isn’t Kollectivism great?

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Wow!  The fabled public trash receptacle!  Amazing!  Something almost first-world!  Something almost civiliz… oh wait.

Klowns just can’t figure it out.  It’s so konfusing!  What are these squiggly lines painted on the side of this blue box?  What could they mean?  What is it for?  Well, might as well be a Klown sheep and follow the leader by putting my drink cup next to everyone else’s.  Why think for myself… no… why think at all when I can just blindly copy?

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Why stop at trash?

Despite never being more than 100 meters away from a public washroom, Klowns insist on covering each and every street with vomit.  The closer to a school, it seems, the better.

Walk around a “trendy” Klown neighborhood on a Saturday or Sunday morning and play a fun game called “Count the Street Pizzas”.  I promise you will tire and grow disgusted with the game long before you have finished tallying up the splatters.

Sure, you COULD use a bathroom… I guess…

Klowns sure do love their bathrooms.  Love destroying them that is.

Klowns are ob-fucking-sessed with shit.  They have “trendy” bread shaped like a steaming turd pile.  No word of a fucking lie.  They have wine made of shit.  They have children’s books entirely centered around the act of expelling solid wastes.  They even have parks and statues dedicated to all things fecal.

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Of course the Klown thinks he shits gold.

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But seriously now.  What the fuckity fuck?

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I guess you could call Klowns real “shitheads”

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Maybe you’ll be “lucky” enough to find one of these sparkling public washrooms, where the stench of uncleansed, layered uric acid is so overwhelming that it literally gags you.  Welcome to Klown:  2018 Olympic Host!

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Maybe you long for winter and the snowy white blanket that will at least temporarily mask the true nature of Klown… but that facade of cleanliness will only last a few hours before this happens.Image

 

This is the delight that greets me on the way home from the market.  This wall is maybe 200 meters long, was completed just a year or 2 ago, and it covered from end to end in this TB-riddled abstract artwork of phlegm.  And these are only the ones that were rocketed out with some velocity.  The ground is worse as most Koreans are only capable of dribble spitting, like a 6-month-old might do.Image

 

Maybe smoking is more your scene?

 

Oh, but Mr. K!  You must understand our unique and special situation!  Seoul is so very crowded!  If you head out to one of our “new cities” you’ll see the miracle of Korean planning and ingenuity!  You’ll see that we really are sparkling!

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This is Songdo.  This is a “new city” that isn’t even finished yet.  Everything is brand fucking new.  It took less than a year to turn this ghost town into a garbage pile.

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More of Songdo, right in the hart of what is supposed to be the visitor-friendly “downtown”.  This was a city billed as “international”.  Millions were spent trying to bribe first-world companies to set up offices here.  Money just isn’t enough for some people.Image

How about Dongtan new city?  This is right in the heart of the commerical district where businesses are being asked to pay obscene prices for shitty, hastily-built deathtrap buildings.Image

Here’s a “new town” area in Daejeon.  This place is something like 6 months old.  Most of the commercial spaces are vacant.  Gee, I wonder why?  But then again, self-reflection isn’t a skill Klowns possess.  I’m sure the locals here have found a way to blame the Americans or the Chinese for this.Image

The fucking trash can is RIGHT FUCKING THERE!  You fucking Klown fucks!

But the trash in garbage bags (or sprinkled liberally over any horizontal surface) isn’t the only filth on the streets of Klown.  All that street vomit and odd gold shit has to have a source.  How about the least appetizing food imaginable?

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Oh yum! Tripe!  Seriously, I wouldn’t feed this last-ditch, need-for-basic-survival, desparation, trapped in a well peasant fare to a dog let alone a human.  This looks like something Bear Grylls would eat to demonstrate survival techniques. Image

Yum yum Klowns!  What beach-cave dwelling pre-human ancestors crammed into their pre-lingual maws thousands of years ago is your modern fare.  You know we’ve come a long way as a species and mastered things like “fire” and “cutting implements” and “plates”, right?  No?Image

 

Trash doesn’t always take conventional forms.  Here we see a car covered completely in prostitute advertisement cards, the same you can find on the road near any elementary school.  Klassy.

All that separates Seoul from Tiaquana is a donkey show, and of course Seoul’s far inferior quality of alcohol.Image

Some trash is just human trash.  Prozzies in most wealthy countries are chemically-dependent, mentally-ill or in hiding.  Whores here are just whores for the sake of it.  There is no desire, no motivation to do anything worthwhile with one’s life.  No sense that bettering oneself is important.  Just human trash.

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Here are their customers, the worst kind of human trash – the ajosshi.

But of course it isn’t important to fix any of the above.  It isn’t necessary to acknowledge how fucking repulsive and backwards it is.  No.  What is important is making sure white devils don’t come near the women.  You know, the same white devils who saved Klown from the Japanese, again from their Nork “brothers” and has poured countless billions into the economy to artificially created the “Miracle on the Han”.

In the mind of a Klown, the enemy can never be the self.  This is why Klowns will always be Klowns

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God forbid an evil foreigner was let into our cheap, shitty nightclubs and room salons!

Just think of the potential lost value to our property, I mean, our women!

Won’t somebody please think of the children?!

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Yes.  Think of the children.

But that’s Klown for you.  And while, if you look hard enough, you’ll find dirt, decay and wretchedness in any city or country, Klown is different.  You don’t need to look at all.  Life in the pig farm foulness is the rule, not the exception.

But Klowns don’t care.  In the Human Centipede, there is no taking responsibility, growing a sack and taking care of business – there is only shit and swallow.  There is only accept and revisit abuse and pollution.  These are just a few examples of a much larger toilet bowl culture of social retardation and decay.

I think this statue in Modo Park sums it up with delightful Klowny artistic skill.

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Shit and swallow, Klowns.  Shit and swallow.

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44 thoughts on “Kommunity and Kollectivism

  1. Your second picture is from India. Notice the saris? Yeah, things can be bad in Korea.
    You don’t have to distort the truth to make your point. Why’d you label the picture “Seoulslum” if you weren’t either lazy on your research or lying? I’d suggest a bit more rigor on getting your facts straight.

  2. Just wanted to copy and paste this excerpt to hammer the point home:

    “What is important is making sure white devils don’t come near the women. You know, the same white devils who saved Klown from the Japanese, again from their Nork “brothers” and has poured countless billions into the economy to artificially created the “Miracle on the Han”.

    Any nation of a slightly lesser grade of assholes would at least be somewhat grateful. There are still protests today against the US military presence in Korea, despite that presence being the only thing that would stop bigger, stronger China from eventually rolling in and reminding the Klowns where they stand and always have stood in the regional pecking order.

  3. I knew I wasn’t in Kansas anymore the first week I came. 4 years ago this month I told my Korean boss “I don’t feel too good.”
    She asks,”Do you have diarrhea?”

  4. I am sure that the same kind of pictures can be found in America and Europe, not mentioning any other country in the world.

    Your single minded pursuit to reveal the dark side of the moon makes you look like an idiot.

    • Well, “The Boss”, I can honestly say I have no fucking clue what your point is.

      Are you saying that pollution, peasantry, laziness, selfishness and filthy social habits best reserved for farm animals are to be ignored and excused in Korea because they occur elsewhere?

      Are you saying that compared to other countries, (in particular those nations that can be economically compared to Korea) Korea “ain’t that bad”?

      Are you saying that I should accept environmental abuse that directly and immediately impacts my life, shut up and swallow the shit, taking my obedient place in the Human Centipede?

      What exactly is your point?

      First off, I’ve stated several times that examples of social decay can be found anywhere if one were to look hard enough. That’s not the point though, is it? The point is two fold: 1) that Klown is universally decayed, that not a single region remains unpolluted by the people who, regardless of socio-economic circumstance, live life in the most disgusting ways possible and 2) that Klowns refuse to acknowledge this to the point of screaming like maniacs about how their own social retardation is everyone elses fault (while simultaneously embarrassing themselves with the most ridiculous ‘PR’ campaigns to promote their ‘Sparkling’ kuntry). Unlike the way your bland blog, which apparently nobody is interested in reading, rambles on about nothing that the average middle school student doesn’t already understand, has no impactful relevance to anyone, the filth around me has very real consequences on my life.

      I quite literally cannot walk from my home to any other building without encountering examples of what can only be considered completely uncivilized ways of living. This is the same anywhere in the city. It is not the same globally. The sheer scope and volume is beyond acceptable and is fully worthy of my venting. But let’s solve this a different way. How about I issue a challenge. Let’s call it the Klownisms Challenge, and here’s how it will work. You choose any city, in any OECD country, anywhere on earth, and I’ll select South Korea. We select whatever demographic region you want – downtown big city, beach, tourist section, middle class, slum, whatever. We place a stick in the ground at some random spot with a 20 meter rope attached to it. We draw a circle with that 20m radius. We then go to work documenting the number and variety of instances of pig-farmer-esque peasantry and community abuse, and we see which neighborhood “wins”. You won’t take this challenge though, because you already know the outcome. You might not want to hear it, but you know it to be true. Absolutely true.

      That brings us to problem 2, which is apologist fuckbags of hot wind. You want to call me an idiot? You know what is truly idiotic? Selectively ignoring and even defending epidemic sociopathy at a cultural and communal level rather than taking issue with it. Klowns cannot, will not, must not ever take responsibility for the sorry state of their society. In exactly the same way that a Klown pedestrian will walk boldly out into traffic and refuse to turn his or her head to make eye contact with oncoming cars, a Klown’s refusal to acknowledge the social decay that is right fucking in front of him is indefensible. It’s all “understand my culture” fucking lunacy, and it will end in the worse possible ways. You don’t like to hear about the slums and the garbage and vomit and the spit? I don’t like to fucking live these things without even a small reprieve or respite. You have the choice of not reading what I write. I don’t have the choice of not needing to step in, on or over things that just shouldn’t be there on the way to the market. Klown apologists do this kuntry no favors. Shhing people who vocally criticize the wholly unnecessary, sado-masochistic, deranged and fucking disgusting way that Klowns live and treat one another does this kuntry no favors. It perpetuates and encourages and enables every single fucking thing I vent about. I refuse to play the part of enabler, but don’t worry, Klown has plenty of those.

      I like the “dark side of the moon” comment you made though, it’s perfect. Perfect because the complete social disaster that is Klown isn’t the “dark side of the moon”, unseen and in need of willful discovery. Klownisms aren’t even “just there”. No, they make sure to bitch slap you as hard as fucking possible across the face because misery absofuckinglutely LOVES kompany. Also perfect because that’s how Klowns and apologists would like Klown’s failure on all social fronts to remain, hidden like the dark side of the moon – hidden and forgotten and not talked about. As unpleasant as it may be to hear about negative things like Klownisms, by the time you pull your head out of the sand to see if it’s all just sorted itself out and gone away, it will be exponentially more unpleasant. That’s how problems work, you see; ignoring them and pretending they “aren’t that bad” or that “well other places have problems too” is just like a battered and abused wife going back to her husband, a pocket full of excuses – it never ends well. I’m just pointing out and venting about what is painfully and abundantly obvious to anyone with a functioning cerebrum… anyone but a Klown.

      But sure. I’M the idiot.

      • Don’t mind “The Boss”; he’s never seen the filthy streets of Korea because his in-laws have set him up in a nice building, in a nice part of Seoul and provided him with a steady little earner that keeps him insulated from the filth.
        The question is not ‘Why are many areas of Seoul filthy?”, rather, the actual question is “Why is it both filthy and expensive at the same time?” It seems very contradictory, I guess. When we see streets covered in puke or trash or spit, or all three, we assume that the area must be low rent, filled with junkies, high crime, generally noisy and undesirable, etc, because in a Western country, or any highly developed country for that matter, these are all the hallmarks of a shitty, dangerous, low-rent area. Yet the cost of housing and the cost of living in Korea do not reflect this in any logical way.
        It’s a massive contradiction, because we have Koreans telling us “This neighborhood is prestige, and high class, and luxury” but from a Western point of view, when we see the trash piles, vomit, urine, drunks screaming etc., we can’t help but question the sanity of the people labeling such places as “desirable” or “luxury”.
        Coming from a place that is relatively clean, with very limited public nuisance, and organized rubbish collection etc, it’s easy to forget that Koreans were very recently living squalor, so the neighborhoods you see in Seoul, filthy as they might be, represent a large upgrade for most people who were raised in Korea over the past few decades.
        The rich areas of Seoul are so filthy that the more discerning old money fled to Bundang and Pangyo back in the late 90′s and early 00′s. They aren’t clueless. They want to be insulated from it too. Seoul is generally an unpleasant place to live if things like garbage, foul smells, puke etc. tend to bother you.

      • Oh wow. That must be nice, to be sponsored and supported by one’s in-laws! If that were me I might actually have a life… and I sure as fuck wouldn’t be arrogant and self-congratulatory about it.

        You’re right on the nail head about the rest though.

        The apologist war cry is that complaints about Korea are invalidated by the existence of problems around the world. It is ludicrous to entertain such idiocy, but what the hell?

        Seoul looks like Cracktown, USA. “Luxury” buildings are treated and abused the way public washrooms are in the sickest parts of Heroinville.

        Not to make excuses for the hopelessly chemically-dependent and their behavior, as being chemically-dependent is, i suppose, a choice…. but what is Klown’s excuse exactly?

        There isn’t one, so those seeking to defend the cesspool city and aggrandize the septic tank society either deflect or become willfully blind.

        Weak minds believe in men with beards, floating in the clouds and casting magic spells. Weak minds refuse to acknowledge fact and logic when it doesn’t jive with their belief system, their faith or their need for blissful ignorance. Weak minds blindly defend the indefensible when the crushing weight of reality is too much for their frail psyches to bear, and the implausible fairy tale is just too comforting to let go of.

      • The Boss gave you the typical Red Herring.When I was making my latest comic,I was preparing for a flood of fallacy;namely red herrings.I don’t know if you have seen my recent comic but it deals with the sex business cards strewn all over the place and my daughter picking one up.I didn’t receive one negative comment on the expat site that I posted it on.This is rare, trust me.However, on my Facebook page I got one!! The person said,”those cards are ankle-deep in Las Vegas.” Hmmm…false equivalency much?Yeah, Las Vegas is the place where everyone takes their kids for a walk!! It totally amazes me that all one has to do is bring up that something bad happens in another country and all of the sudden the problem in Korea disappears.This tactic happens with almost EVERY comic I make that is critical of Korea.

      • What is the first step of any 12 step program?

        This is why Klown will always be Klown.

        And just like most people enrolled in 12 step programs, the reason that Klown will continue to be the way it is is because of enablers.

  5. Klown Syndrome only enables to pretend. Klowns tear down slums, put up highrise, and pretend modernity. Klowns erect yet another museum for cuntemporary fart, and pretend to be cultured. Klowns copy inventions, relabel it, and pretend to be innovative. Klowns elect an executive, let an usurping ajossi posse rule, and pretend to be democratic. And so on. Pretend is all what this just-out-of-the-cave species can do, as they can never ever match the advanced civilizations they compare themselves to.

  6. The biggest shock to my system when I first came here back on 2005 was just how filthy everything was. The trashcan thing still blows my mind. A few months ago I moved back to the same place I was working up until 2011. The hagwon director and I had a good relationship and she wanted me back as her teacher when the other guy left. I hadn’t enjoyed Seoul so I agreed. I’m back in the same apartment as then, and it’s a decent sort for a mid-level hagwon. Not much in the way of complaints there. However, one thing I noticed when I went to take the trash out that first time is that the bin that we’re supposed to throw food trash in was gone. I circled the building, circled the neighboring building, and found nothing. I ended up just setting it down in the big trash pile. When I arrived at work the next day I asked my boss about that and was told that apparently the city is trying to institute some kind of compactor system and it will cost to throw food trash away, like 100 or 200원 per kilo. But most neighborhoods don’t want to pay to install them and, in true Korean fashion, they also removed the old plastic bins. So now food trash piles up and stinks along with the rest of the garbage. Brilliant!

    • My apartment recently added those food disposal machines. They’re fancy LED ‘green food’ machines that are opened by an RFID keycard. You put in the leftovers, it closes and locks. No mess and no smell. However as mentioned above you’re PAYING to throw away food, food that ends up as pig slop anyways.
      What the fuck? Why do the Klowns still persist in this system? Have they ever heard of a garbage disposal unit, or would that cost the chaebols too much when they bang up their cheap apartments? It’s like the ondol: a horribly inefficient heating system from a time when Klownland was dirt shit poor that persists to this DAY in new apartments, even though most Koreans sleep on beds now.

      • But you mishunduh-standuh our prestige~~
        Underfloor heating – or the ondol as you so-so-sayee – is a unique part of oori Korean culture. Didn’t yoo know it doesn’t-uh existuh ANYWHERE else in the wuhrld????

  7. LA Times article about the Guyrong shanty town:
    April 3, 2012
    In the shadow of wealth: Residents of a South Korea shantytown may be down at the heels, but they’re digging them in
    http://articles.latimes.com/2012/apr/03/world/la-fg-south-korea-shantytown-20120403

    In 2012, I visited the shanty town after coming across the LA Times article while doing research on a related subject. The shanytown, itself, of course, is not on any map so I Googled the name of the luxury high-rise apt photographed in the article (Samsung Tower Palace), found that on the map, and used it as a reference point to find the shanty town.

    Based on what I read about its history, the shanty town began to develop mainly as the result of the 1988 Seoul Olympics. The government cleared out its slums in the city and redeveloped it to prepare to be on the world stage. The Youtube video showing the use of thugs to prevent the rebuilding of the burned out homes is not terribly surprising as that was how I believe the poor were driven out of the city to prepare for the Olympics in the 1980s. Although, during that time, South Korea was still under a harsh military dictatorship. Also, when the Cheongyecheon was being redeveloped in downtown during the early 2000s, similar tactics may have been used to drive out poor residents of that area. Makes me think of the US during the Dust Bowl era when people were moving to the cities for work and creating shanty towns. Residents of those towns and cities would try to drive them out by destroying the shanty towns. Grapes of Wrath-type misery and oppression.

    Anyway, back to Guyrong. The poor residents were displaced and ended up going to the outskirts of the city. Why Gangnam? Gangnam at the time was largely undeveloped because it was a landfill and no one was going to protest the poor moving to near the landfill, where no one else lived. Like the garbage generated by the city, “out of sight, out of mind.”

    That’s one the of ironic secrets about Gangnam. It was built on landfill and the ground is unstable. It was initially considered to be one of the reasons for the Sampoong department store collapse in 1995 in Gangnam before investigators uncovered the real reasons (another huge scandal involving additional construction beyond the original design’s ability to support, using cheaper materials and construction techniques to save money, bribery of city officials, etc). The National Geographic Channel profiled the 1995 Sampoong department store collapse on their Seconds From Disaster series and can be found here:

    When details about the Sewol disaster started coming out, like the additional construction beyond the ship’s original design, I immediately thought of the 1995 Sampoong department store collapse. Sorry to go off on another tangent.

    When South Korea’s economy started to pick up and the construction boom followed, the Gangnam landfill was developed around the poor residents of Guryong. Naturally, the land the shanty town became valuable and the city wants to, again, displace the poor residents. Here’s an old Chosun Ilbo article:
    Gangnam Real Estate Worth More Than All of Busan, September 20, 2011
    http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2011/09/20/2011092000357.html

    Now the “mysterious fire” that broke out in the middle of the night and managed not to kill anyone is speculated to be another tactic to drive out the residents. Luc Forsyth is a photojournalist that documented the fire and his photos can be found on his site:
    http://lucforsyth.com/tag/guryong/

    After the fire, the residents had banded to together and purchased fire extinguishers and other fire-fighting equipment and placed them in large, red metal cabinets in strategic areas around the shanty town. I took photographs of those. The residents also banded together to create a sort of neighborhood watch to keep an eye out for strangers. I felt like I was being watched the entire time I was in the shanty town and did not go too far into the shanty town for fear of being confronted by residents. A lot of my photos are taken from just outside the shanty town and overlooking it but I did go in a bit but stopped when I felt the eyes on me. I stayed out in the open where I could see people approaching and out of the narrow walkways where I could easily be cornered.

    Of course, it being a shanty town, the city does not provide it with utilities. From my photos, I think the residents tapped into the power lines. But I don’t think they have water or sewage. Imagine living without water or sewage for over 20 years. I took pictures of the outhouses. I gave a presentation about this in Seoul and I remember a woman in the audience was very audibly shocked by the photo of the outhouse and other conditions I showed.

    The city has also set up what I think are surveillance posts at entrances to the shanty town to prevent new poor people from moving in. I have picture of those. They were said to be put there to “help” residents but I imagine it was more to “help them move out.”

    Here’s a recent article about Guryong:
    Clash looms over developing shanty town in Seoul, June, 18, 2014
    http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/news/nation/2014/06/116_159401.html

    Maybe they can make it into a tourist attraction, like some hanok village. But that, of course, is not the image that Seoul, nor any city, wants to project. That reminds me of Blackout Korea, a blog consisting of photos taken by foreigners of Koreans passed out drunk on the street and elsewhere. That can be found here:
    http://blackoutkorea.blogspot.kr/
    I remember the site getting some flack from Koreans because the foreigners were posing next to the passed out Koreans.

    Seoul likes to promote its night life and clubs as tourist attractions but hide the drunkeness, vomit, prostitution, etc. Same as any other city, I guess. But Korea, and its “unique culture,” has its own spin on common social problems.

  8. That last photo is just bizarre. How old is that statue? I found the obsession with all things fecal a bit odd too. We’re animals, we all poop. Kids would draw that in cutesy pictures on the white board, comics would have lots of shit related stuff, the ol’ ddong chim, etc..
    What’s galling, and I think this is central to what you write, is not all the horseshit evident, but the nationalism and “Korea best” attitude. It’s sort of mind-boggling. I’d like to think most people really don’t think this way, but maybe too many do. It’s poison.

  9. “Safety vigilance is fading already”
    “It’s been two months since the Sewol ferry sunk in waters off Jindo, South Jeolla, claiming the lives of nearly 300 victims. But Koreans have already returned to their slipshod ways, forgetting the bitter lesson that negligence of safety can lead to tragedy.”
    This was front page news in the Korea Joongang Daily. Although the writers go into editorial territory with their opening lines, I think they needed to be said. “Slipshod” fits. It fits with just about anything made or constructed over here. I’ve been here 3 years and have see or heard of everything you’ve described above. It’s bloody ridiculous how much people talk up trash heaps like Gangnam and Hongdae. It was bad enough walking through them. Why anyone would want to live there’s beyond me.
    http://bit.ly/1nhS6M7

    • I totally agree. It seems like people here just refuse to learn from past mistakes and tragedies. It’s sickening. So many lives lost, and nothing learned from it. A tragedy on top of a tragedy… a tragedy Inception, if you will.
      I’m not worried about dying because of North Korea. If I’m going to die in this country, it’ll be because of the poor-as-shit driving, or from a collapsing building or bridge because of their infamous bbali-bbali cutting corners way of doing anything construction based.

  10. Pingback: The Ten Kommandments | klownisms: life in Klown

  11. Dear blog owner,

    You keep harping about the lack of trash cans in Korea’s streets.
    I just wanted to say that this is not because Koreans dislike trash cans and like to throw garbage everywhere.
    This is because of trash laws they instituted several years back.

    You see? Korea is a small country, and there’s not enough space for landfills.
    As Korea industrialized and grew more wealthy, the amount of trash skyrocketed.
    So the govt removed public trash cans in order to reduce the amount of trash.
    And they make everyone throw out trash in special bags that they must purchase.

    They removed the public trash cans and expected people to just carry their trash with them and throw them away when they got home.
    But obviously this is not working out very well. Some people are just littering on the streets.

    Koreans are obviously inconvenienced by this trash problem. And they’re trying to remedy it.

    So in the meantime, please be patient.
    And thank you for your understanding.

    Have a nice day.

    • This is exactly the fucking problem. Let me translate Klownese into English for you readers at home:“Dear Mr. Blogger,

      You keep harping on about the endless, ubiquitous carpet of trash that covers every square kilometer of this country.
      I just wanted to say that this isn’t because Klowns don’t like trash cans, it is because they don’t give a rat’s motherfuck about anyone else in the universe and can’t be ass bothered to dispose of their trash in even remotely civilized ways. Please understand our unique situation and culture

      .
      Also, the thoroughly incompetent Klown government passed a set of laws some years back that were obviously dreamt up by some inbred nephew of some higher-up who has a serious drinking problem.

      You see? We’re so fucking stupid and illogical that we are completely and utterly fucked.
      Korea is a shitty, small, insignificant country and while we tell the world we have room for the Olympics, and build massive theme parks and gigantic shopping malls, a landfill is out of the question since the ajosshi can’t get rich off of that.
      As Korea industrialized on the back of American and Japanese money, the amount of trash produced skyrocketed as we no longer needed to eat dandelion roots (though we may now choose to because they are “traditional” and therefore “delicious”) and could do everything the Americans we secretly envy though profess to hate do.

      So the stupid fucking, dropped-on-their-heads-while-infants Klown government fucks got piss drunk one afternoon and decided to remove public trash cans because, according to their particular breed of logik, removing sanitary communal places to dispose of trash will somehow reduce people’s consumption rates at the same time the government sponsors massive consumerism campaigns.
      They made everyone buy trash bags, but then gave them no place to put them, because they are functionally fucking retarded and should have been aborted in utero.

      The removed the public trash cans and expected people to just to carry their trash with them because, apparently, they had never stepped foot in Klown public or even looked out a fucking window in their lives to see that Klowns are so far fucking removed from responsible trash disposal that we’re all lucky they aren’t just whipping down their pants and pissing and shitting in the streets. Oh wait. THEY ARE.

      Fuck.

      But obviously this is not working out very well. A blind, brain-damaged chimp could see that. Some (and by that I mean every fucking Klown in existence) are just littering on the streets.

      Koreans are obviously inconvenienced by this trash problem, but not enough to actually give a fuck and do something about it, plus we are actually quite comfortable living in our own filth… do not pigs roll in their own shit? Everything will work out because of the Human Centipede ideology which dictates that their unhappiness with the current situation (the entire fucking country blanketed in festering filth) will simply be passed on to someone else in a sick fucking form of abuse that is socially encouraged and culturally glorified. Klowns are saying that they are trying to remedy it, but really they are just looking for someone they can blame their own farm animal behavior on.

      So in the meantime, be patient as we spark a 21st century bubonic plague.
      I guess that’s what we all get for expecting the chronically uncivilized to show some fucking pride and respect. One would think Klowns might learn from this and other lessons, but they won’t because they are willfully incompetent. Because incompetent is “traditional” and therefore “good”. Please understand out culture.

      Have a nice day, AKA ‘Fuck you. Me Klown. Me use world as toilet. Revel in my traditional filth.’”

      Why don’t I come to your house? I can pop a squat outside your front door (because there isn’t a toilet conveniently located outside your front door) and dribble some special ‘Spicy Gochu Chicken’ diarrhea shit all over your doorstep? Then I can leave my household food garbage there (since Samsung is seemingly confused by the concept of a garbage disposal unit), piss on your door and spit all over your door handle.

      Please understand my special and unique situation! I needed to take a shit and dispose of trash but I didn’t want to go to the trouble of finding an actual toilet because I’m a mannerless fuck who has no business existing in the company of other humans, and there were no trashcans because my dumb as all fuck government removed them all. I know you told me to reduce the amount of feces I produce, but I eat just as much as ever (actually more since I am now ‘wealthy’ and can enjoy processed foods and gourmet coffee – which has no effect on defecation, right?) and produce the same (well, more) amount of shit as I always have. I am literally full of shit.

      Please understand my culture.

      When I say that it excuses any and all behaviors, even those that are deeply socially retarded.

  12. Are you sure that’s a shithead Klown? That girl looks like one of those evil Japanese, they’re obsessed with shit as well.

  13. Pingback: Klown Komments 1 | klownisms: life in Klown

  14. About the trash cans….
    I worked in Myeondong in 2003 and there were a bunch of trash cans on the street. Then one day they were gone.
    When the government mandated that year that you had to buy trash cans from the stores, ajumas started dumping all their trash into the cans because they were too cheap to fork over 500 won, or whatever it was, for the bags.
    The official line, of course, from my Korean colleagues at work was that it was because of terrorism, i.e. “terra.” They were all told from someone — they all seemed to believe it — that they were removed so someone couldn’t put a bomb in them.

    • That’s what I heard too from a few of my students~ In my area – dong wide – they started a public trash can scheme several years ago ala any other normal city; you know, beside a bus stop, park bench, or wherever…
      But then you KNOW what happened: every peasant within walking distance stuffed the trash cans full late at night or whenever, and then just dumped the refuse of their useless, worthless lives, all over the pavement when the bins were filled….obviously, after that, and because Koreans follow what everybody else does, every tom, dick and hyori just tossed their empty coffee cups, or whatever onto the nice, festering pile as they passed by, grabbed their bus, or whatever….naaaaaaeeeeeeeeeeeesuhhhhhhhh!!!
      Solution? The dong office just scrapped the bins and left the peasantry to swim in their own filth, instead as they know they’re too cheap to pay 500 won for a freaking plastic bag!!
      Gotta admire the simplicity of their solution!!
      I have witnessed younger, more educated Koreans actually deal with their trash sensibly, gotta give it to ‘em for trying to change things…but that useless peasant class they have here en masse? I think forced euthanasia would be a good start!!!
      Sorry!!

  15. Been reading this blog for a while. I’m more of a third-person observer of Korea really, since I’ve been living in Japan for almost 9 years, and the sadomasochistic relationship both countries have had with each other has fascinated me.
    Me and the GF decided to take a trip during summer to Seoul just for the hell of it. One thing that seemed funny was that despite the chronic hate boner Klowns have for the Nipponese, they sure love their tourist money. They’d bust out the Japanese whenever my lady would shop around for cosmetics in Insadong.
    Japanese themselves have a wild drinking culture, but one thing that surprised me about Korea is that they take it to the next level. We stayed in a cheap hotel near City Hall Station, surrounded by tons of clubs and BBQ joints. When we went out of the hotel during the early evening, we’d see these ajumma wheeling out these carts full of meat, veggies, and booze to serve on the streets to all the ajeosshi.
    On our final day we had to catch our flight from Incheon really early, so we checked out of the hotel at 5:30AM… And the ladies with the carts were STILL outside, serving BBQ and booze to ajeosshis! Also to mention, we had to evade quite a few sleepers in the gutter who had hit the soju too hard.
    Even though we had just stayed in Seoul for a week, my impression was that it was kind of like a more hopped-up version of Tokyo during the bubble-era (the roaring 80′s). Many long-term expats in Japan have expressed the same sentiment to me whenever they visited Seoul. Japan went through a huge cultural change after the bubble popped: Lifetime employment was no longer guaranteed, traditional family structures transformed, etc. One wonders if Korea will experience the same thing when their own bubble pops, or will it go down differently than it did for Japan in the 90′s.

    • While I can maybe see how the all-night drinking *cough* “culture” of Klown might seem like Tokyo, I don’t think I’d use the term “hopped up”… maybe “poor man’s version of” or “if Tokyo was Oceania and Klown was the Prole section”.

      Japan has things that Klown will never have, such as creativity, innovative thinking, consideration for one’s neighbors (shit, I’d even be happy even with acknowledgement of neighbors), basic civilized levels of cleanliness…

      Now of course the Koreaboos are going to briefly excuse themselves from the…. well I would say “ass-ramming” but it’s more like “pincushioning” they are receiving from the ajosshis for a moment to chime in here with how every country has elements of social decay and filth.

      That’s true! You fucking worldly geniuses you.

      Thing is that in other outposts of civilization, you have to go out and find the filth. You can find it, sure, but you’d have to wade through all that general orderliness and self-management to find it. When you DO find it, it will generally be connected to deep poverty and/or chemical dependence and/or extreme lack of education.

      Then there is Klown, which is the mirror image. Finding civility and considerate, orderly behavior here is a mission. It’s an expedition. One must rely on Sherpa guides to lead them over the mountains of trash and vomit and peasantry to find one tiny apex of “first-world” behavior.

      And as much as Klown advertises and screams and throws tantrums for international attention, it will never, ever be on the same level as Japan. Klowns know this (won’t admit it, but know it), which (combined with their general inferiority complex and Short-man Syndrome about all things) is why they have those “chronic hate boners”.

      I don’t know why you would use your vacation time to visit Seoul. Do you just get off on human misery, underachievement and backwash socialization? Did you feel the need to punish yourself? Was it kind of like a trek to other side of the tracks “to see how the other side lives”?

      When K-bubble pops (and it most assuredly will), it will be everyone else’s fault, suicides will make today’s rates look like nothing, there will be mass emmigration far beyond today’s scale and the one’s left will paw and claw and slobber all over each other trying to scratch out a living as China’s bitch harem.

      And it will all be of their own doing. They will have been given every golden opportunity. And they’ll scream otherwise, but as much as nobody gives a flying fuck today, they won’t feel the need to nod and wait for the Klowns to finish yammering in the future.

      I’ll be gone by then and I could give less of a fuck if they bury themselves alive in their own compost and feces at that point.

      I suppose there is a sliver of a chance the upcoming generation might make different choices, but having spent the last 8 years watching them grow up and helping to educate them, I wouldn’t even bet a penny on it.

      • yeah, definitely not “hopped up”. i don’t even understand the imagined appeal of seoul vs anywhere else in korea. you go to a commercial district and there will be:
        -sprawling, impossibly priced department store
        -noraebangs (yeah that’s entertaining after the first time…)
        -places where klowns burn meat and guzzle soju
        -overpriced places where klowns burn meat and guzzle soju
        -lame and overpriced izakayas
        -coffee shops (no further explanation required)

        there will be no variation within these, no place that plays real, worthwhile music either live or with a thought out theme. you will get the same products, drinks and food in any “city” anywhere in klownland. why bother walking farther than 10 minutes from your house? there is nothing.

  16. Eh, it was more of a trek to see how the “other side lives.” Plus the airfare was cheap. Thankfully, we’re doing Saigon this year instead because we have more money and time. Although in hindsight, we’re probably spending about the same amount of money even with the more expensive flight to Saigon from Tokyo since hotels and food in Nam are dirt cheap. I have no real motivation to go back to Seoul unless its business-related. Hell, there are cheaper places to stay at in Tokyo and LA than Seoul these days.

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