Tag Archives: Korean

CNBLUE: My New Favorite Band

My musical tastes typically tend toward the Barbra Streisand / Cher / Broadway show tunes types or toward the singer/songwriter types like Ani DiFranco and Dar Williams, who often perform with nothing more than an acoustic guitar. Thus, I haven’t had a lot of favorite bands. I listened to some Hot Hot Heat and Flogging Molly back in high school, but I’d suppose that my favorite band was arguably not actually a band at all – the K-pop group Shinhwa, of the singer/dancer boy band style . And now I’ve discovered CNBLUE, an actual rock band – electric guitars and drums and everything – and I adore them. Continue reading

Languages I Wish I Could Speak

I’ve always wished I could speak Korean. Throughout my school years, I took Spanish classes, and I bitterly resented the fact that I wasn’t learning Korean — that my Spanish (elementary though it is) is so much better than my Korean. Being a Korean adoptee was central to my identity, and the fact that I didn’t know Korean was especially hard to handle in my early high school years. Continue reading

“Us” versus “Them”

This whole “us versus them” mentality really gets us nowhere.

I understand the desire — the need — to have community and to not always be the “other,” the “them.” (RENT, anyone? “To being an ‘us’ for once / instead of a ‘them!'”) As someone who has been part of a “them” for as long as I can remember, I get that.

At the same time, I think we often tend to go too far with the “us versus them” mentality. Continue reading

I Feel Like I’m Losing Myself

EXPLORING TRANS — SATURDAY, JULY 10, 2010, 8:11 PM

I feel like I’m being pulled in so many different directions. I don’t know how — I’ve never know how — to deal with multiple identities in a way that didn’t cause one of them to be neglected and ignored. I’m a Korean adoptee, but I’m also queer and trans, and I haven’t yet been able to figure out a way to unite those identities, instead of simply pushing one to the foreground and the other to the back. Continue reading

Tattoo Ideas

If you got a tattoo, what would it be?

When I was young, I always thought that I would get a single tattoo. Just one, black ink — my name, perhaps (one of them, anyway). Some of the first tattoos I saw and liked belonged to a few family friends — brothers who got their names in Arabic, I think, with the tree from the flag of Lebanon (they’re of Lebanese descent). It was strong, personal, timeless. Seeing their tattoos may have been the first time I decided that I wanted a tattoo.

Continue reading

“You Need To Respond Verbally.”

It frustrates me when the color of my skin makes people think that I don’t speak English. I was on a plane a few months ago, sitting behind the people in the exit row. The flight attendant asked the person whether they understood the requirements of sitting in the exit row; when the person (presumably) nodded, they were told, “You need to respond verbally.”

It brought back a memory of a flight I’d been on previously. I was sitting in exit row, and the flight attendant asked whether I understood the instructions. I nodded — I don’t remember how many times I’ve flown seated in the exit row, but it was enough to be nothing new. Instead of telling me that I need to respond verbally, the flight attendant then asked me whether I understood English. Continue reading

Belly Shack

Korean BBQ Beef (to go)

I was heading home from the office via the Blue Line when I walked past Belly Shack, just under the Western stop. I would have passed by, but the word “Korean” caught my eye (it’s a fusion restaurant). As I paused to check their menu, the door opened, giving me a whiff of Korean food. It smelled so good. I haven’t had Korean food of any kind in months, and I just couldn’t resist. Continue reading