We DID say that episode 24 was going to be our last of season 4, but with Donald Trump winning the presidential election in the US, we had no choice but to have an emergency final final episode. We thought he’d never win the presidency, but this election has taught us to never say never again. Wow, just wow America! WTF!
Ripped from the facebook page of Gabriel Pettyjohn
WTF (On the Pulse) – What does a Trump presidency mean for Korea, US-Korean relations, Korean Americans, Expats in Korea, East Asian geopolitics and the world in general? Rob and Eugene were beyond shocked at the results of the 2016 election and we probably will be for some time. We try to go as deep as we possibly can to discuss the implications of this latest WTF moment of 2016.
At last, we are at the finale of season 4 on Café Seoul. This show is all about gates, but not about the kind of gates you’re thinking of. No, we’re talking about scandals. The spectre of corruption and the pressure to get results quickly are the causes of two very recent scandals that have severe political and economic ramifications for Korea.
News of the Weird – Reviewing an opinion piece regarding batterygate, Samsung’s exploding battery scandal.
Ask Rob & Eugene – Gatey McGateface asks why there’s no Bukdaemun, when there’s a Namdaemun, Dongdaemun, and there used to be a Seodaemun.
On the Pulse – A long drawn out discussion of Choi Soon-sil gate… the scandal involving President Park’s close friend, who has allegedly been manipulating her from behind the scenes.
Special thanks to Peter Daley for contributing to this episode!
Peter also appeared in season 3 to talk about cults, so you can hear that episode here.
For an excellent writeup about Choi Soon-sil gate, please check out Ask a Korean’s piece about it, which explains it in detail in a way that even people not totally familiar with Korea can understand it.
On the Pulse – Sarah Eppley and Lizzie Drake join Eugene and Rob as the foursome discuss their experiences of Korean universities. Keep in mind that the ladies are here temporarily on study abroad and are relatively new to Korea (less than one year). Eugene and Rob are long timers, so that might account for some of the disconnect. People always say that when you study in Korea you get out of it what you put into it. It can have you flying high or it can be a bit of a skyfall, or both!
Hyunsu Kim (The only goth in Korea) is back for this episode, as we look to her expert opinion on a recent clash that has developed between two websites that are at odds with each other on gender issues. This particular spat might be unknown to our listeners who don’t use the internet in Korean but you can take a quantum of solace in the fact that Hyunsu is here to explain it to us all.
Shoutout to Kaomi Goetz, who is running the Adapted podcast, focusing on Korean international adoptees who have returned to live in Korea. It’s a pretty sweet podcast that people interested in adoptee issues would really love, interviewing a large variety of people. Check them out here.
<— Rob mentioned he liked this song, so we added a video of it.
Ask Rob & Eugene – @albanypeacenik on twitter asks us why Korean people walk backwards for exercise
A woman was fired from her job for wearing this shirt, made by Megalia
On the Pulse
There are lots of places on the internet where gender-related discussions blow up into long and bitter internet fights. Some of those conversations are good-faith attempts at understanding. Others are trolls going at it for the sheer lulz. In On The Pulse, recent guest Hyunsu (the only goth in Korea) talks about Megalia, a feminist response to sexism originating in Ilbe, sometimes called Korea’s 4Chan. How did these groups come to be? Do they deserve each other? Are they advancing a social goal, or just fixing for a fight? We discuss this and more on On The Pulse.
Oh lookie! Eugene made a meme out of a meme he made out of a meme he made. RIP Gene Wilder
Ever felt like a kid in a chocolate factory? Things are pretty awesome at first but then you see what happens when you lose sight of what’s important. So then you go home and things are great at first but you feel out of place because nobody else has been living in a chocolate factory like you. So you return and it’s just.. not… the same… Is reverse reverse culture shock a thing? I suppose it’s possible that one could be dealing with a veritable roulette table of emotions. But in the casino royale of globalism, it’s quite possible that there’s a class of people that just don’t really feel comfortable in either country A or country B… and that is why we have invited former longtime expat Joe Mondello to this episode. Joe lived in Korea for most of the ’00s and early ’10s. He’s since returned to the US, but is back here for a short visit.
Who doesn’t? If you went to high school in the West in the 90s, if films like The Crow, or bands like The Cure moved your deepest heart, you might have a little Goth in you. Though Bela Lugosi is still dead, you get to die another day, and today, you can meet Hyunsu, a university student who is “The Only Goth in Korea.”
Is she really the only goth in Korea? Is it easy to find black nail polish in Seoul? And how do the fantasy works of Rick Riordan fit into the picture? Click “play” and find out!
Maybe you’ve been looking around on Facebook and seen the ads for the company called “Ask Ajumma.” What is Ask Ajumma? Or better yet, WHO is Ask Ajumma? Café Seoul leaves no stone unturned in our quest to find out one of the biggest mysteries of expat life…. (Okay, we actually just Asked Ajumma). Ask Ajumma is in fact an actual person, Maria Lee.
All about Maria Lee and the Ask Ajumma Concierge Service. In a nutshell, the service helps those with language or cultural barriers or those who just don’t want to deal with ordering or finding things. It will find anything you want and find a way to deliver it to you. They go above and beyond to get you what you want, even if you’re the type of person for whom the world is not enough. Try them out. You won’t be disappointed.