Thursday, May 10, 2012

South Korea: Honey Badger

Ok, I guess first I must explain the term "honey badger," I know not everyone wastes as much time on the internet as I do.

A few years ago this video hit the internet like a cute baby panda sneezing and scaring its mother:

It resulted in the creation of a new meme (internet trend). Some people say "honey badge don't care," others "honey badger don't give a shit," but, as always, I prefer to use one of the most versatile words in the English language and go with "honey badger don't give a fuck."

So now I pose to you this well-crafted opinion: no country in the world is more like a honey badger than South Korea.

Why, you ask? I'll tell you in four words: North Korea and  아줌마 (ajumma).
One of my friends, when asking their coworkers how they felt after the report of Kim Jong Il's death, said all they did was groan and say "the stock market went down today..."
These women mean business...
When I decided to move to South Korea many people acted as though I was moving to a third world country. This might just be a result of Americans generally not caring about anything that happens outside of America; many Americans have only seen pictures of Korea taken during the war. Others asked me why I would do that, wasn't I afraid of North Korea attacking? Well, I guess I was slightly concerned, but my friend who was already here told me that South Koreans pretty much have honey badgered the problem out of their systems.

Not caring what the hell North Korea does is a necessity for living in South Korea. If South Koreans reacted every time the North made a threat they would probably all be living in caves or underground bunkers by now. North Korea has been threatening total devastation of the South on a weekly basis since the war began. When the North was testing its missile system earlier this year the only people I heard speak about it was westerners and people in the states. Koreans straight up didn't care and, correctly, expected the rocket to fail. Treating North Korea like a real threat would mean South Koreans could not live their lives, and their lives are pretty dope. They have the most internet access in the world, more cellphones per capita than per capita (seriously, there are more cellphones being used by Koreans than there are Koreans, google it), and most of them live in one of the coolest, most futuristic cities in the world. So Koreans, when it comes to the North; keep on Honey Badgering!

My second point is about 아줌마. If you don't know, ajummas are middle aged women most often spotted in leisure wear and straight up not giving a damn what you think about them. Korean culture has a strong principal that they must respect those older than them and, hunny, no one knows how to abuse respect like an ajumma. Their counter-parts (아저씨 or ajeossshi) are downright docile (unless you get them liquored up) in comparison. These visor-wearing, power-walking, hill climbing, balls of "just try to get in my way" have been spotted pushing people out of the way when trying to get on or off any form of public transport, yelling at younger people to give up their seats, and giving the deadliest of death stares to any foreigner who dares pass in their eyeline. You would think that, since they come up to, on average, about 5'4", that these people would be hard to spot. No, these women are bedazzled like a Lisa Frank folder on PCP.
Seriously, Lisa, if you're ever looking to get into fashion design, South Korea will take you.
They wear enough make-up on their faces to fend off most small-caliber rifle fire (I guess at least SOME of the Korean population is always prepared for the North to attack) and don't care if you hate the smell, they are going to eat that dried squid on the subway so loudly that you'll think they're trying to ward off bear attacks.

Complain as I may about 아줌마, they are part of the charm this country has and I can't imagine it without them.So go ahead, South Korea, keep honey badgering, no one's gonna mess with you.

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