Extra! Korea

April 11, 2010

“Eye Smiles” and “Egg Lines”

Filed under: celebrities, gender equality, pseudoscience, rapid cultural change, youth — extrakorea @ 10:55 am

Somebody page The Grand Narrative. To S-lines, V-lines, heart-lines, and the rest of the alphabetical labels that we can attach to women for easy categorization, we can add: eye smiles and egg lines.

Eye Smiles:

If you haven’t heard of this term before, it’s the crescent shape that an eye curves into when a person smiles. In Korea, guys tend to love girls who smile this way.

And an “egg-line” is when a person’s face looks like an egg, with the narrow end on the bottom, of course. In other words, it’s a V-line taken one step further. Because it’s always OK to further criticize a woman’s looks.

Do you know what I think is the purpose of all this is? To use use pseudo-scientific terms so that you can describe a woman’s face or body and not suffer consequences. If I were to say to a woman, “You have nice boobs,” she might well slap my face. On the other hand, if I say, “You have a good W-line” (which basically says the same thing), she probably won’t do anything. Why not? Probably because wrapping the comment up in pseudo-scientific terms makes it look objective.

And did you know that having surgery on your eyelids is considered, by some people, to not be plastic surgery?

After all, it is only double eyelid surgery and is not the same as plastic surgery.

Say what?!

February 15, 2010

Kim Min-seon found not guilty of harming beef importer’s business

Filed under: hard to categorize, pseudoscience — extrakorea @ 10:39 am

Actress Kim Min-seon was being sued by an importer of American beef, A-Meat, for comments she made on her Cyworld,* that she would rather drink poison than eat American beef (because she thought that U.S. beef was all infested with mad cow disease.) Interestingly, shortly before writing these remarks, she ate a hamburger in the U.S. I guess she has a short memory –maybe she did contract the disease after all.
The Seoul Southern District Court has ruled that she is not liable for financial damage suffered by the company.

Judge Kim Sung-gon said in the ruling, “Her article revealed no specific information associated with the plaintiff. So it cannot be seen that her article interrupted its business.”

I guess that means: She didn’t name A-Meat specifically, so A-Meat is succotash out of luck. Kim isn’t guilty of harming their business, just of being stupid.

* sort of like Korea’s version of MySpace or Facebook

August 25, 2009

Four-year jail term sought for Hwang Woo-suk

Filed under: crime, pseudoscience, science — extrakorea @ 2:06 pm

You might remember Hwang Woo-suk. Prosecutors are seeking a four-year jail sentence for alleged embezzlement and bioethics law violations.

Here’s a health food I’d never heard of before: deer navels

Filed under: health, music, pseudoscience — extrakorea @ 6:05 am

Pak Bom, of the group 2NE1, likes health food. In a recent interview, she reveals one that I had never heard of before.

Bom [Park Bom]: Ah, I talked about health foods too much…. truthfully, I do take care to eat them well. My parents ordered deer umbilici for me. I think it’s good for the body. (Laughs.) I like stuff like red ginseng and wild ginseng. I recommend and even feed them to others.

Dara [Sandara Park]: It’s really bitter. It’s tortuous to eat it, but Bom eats it well while smiling.

August 9, 2009

Sexual performance problems? Our medicine will have you using your thingy to smash through walls

Filed under: health, humor, pseudoscience, What the hell?! — extrakorea @ 9:26 am

Mad props to flakfizer for making and putting up this video.
Do you have problems with sexual performance or urinating? Don’t worry, our medicine will give you pee so powerful you’ll be smashing down walls!
By the way, there’s a kind of Korean wine made from wild berries, bok-bun-ja, which is supposed to have similar enhancement properties.

July 8, 2009

What makes Kim Yu-na a champion figure skater? Her small face

Filed under: pseudoscience, sports — extrakorea @ 3:47 am

There’s an interesting article about sports figures in the Dong-ah Ilbo.

Lee Seong-ho, editor-in-chief of the monthly MFight, described the Russian fighter [Fedor Emelianenko] as having soft muscles on top of hard ones. “The reason why he`s so flexible is due to his soft muscles, which work as armor,” Lee said.

Despite exercising regularly, I’ve been discouraged by the fact that I still have a layer of fat over my muscles. I needn’t have worried. Those are just my “soft muscles,” which will act like armor if any street hoodlum is foolish enough to try to mug me.

Lee Ji-hee, vice chairwoman of the Korea Skating Union and an international judge, said Kim [Yu-na] has the “ultimate” body for figure skating: a small face, a properly thin body, and long arms and legs.

Having a big face increases your centrifugal force, which makes you more likely to lose your balance when you spin or do a double Axel. There’s nothing more disappointing to see than a big-faced figure skater spinning out of control. I remember one such skater lamenting, “If only I had a smaller face. Why have I been cursed like this?” Look at Michelle Kwan. How could she have been a five-time world champion if she had had a bigger face?

“With her ability to express her physique beautifully, she is matchless,” said Lee Ji-hee, vice chairman of the Korea Skating Union and an international judge.

OK, it’s true that her long limbs make her movements more graceful and aesthetic. However, champion skaters come in more than one shape. Midori Ito had short, stubby legs, but she was the most powerful jumper I’ve ever seen. When she was competitive, she was unique in that she used, more-or-less, the same jumps that the male competitors were doing.

And the fact that Lee Ji-hee is vice-chairman of the Korea Skating Union and an international judge needs to be repeated a third time.

This is why medical professionals in Korea scare me, and they should scare you, too. You can’t know if they passed their medical exams legitimately or if they cheated.

June 8, 2009

Hwang Woo-suk given award, but couldn’t receive it because he was in court

Filed under: crime, idiots, pseudoscience, science — extrakorea @ 10:56 am

You can’t make this stuff up. Despite being disgraced for two fraudulent studies, Hwang Woo-suk was given an award. Even the Korea Times had to admit that this was an embarrassment that made zero sense.

Disgraced gene scientist Hwang Woo-suk has been a pariah in the science world since his landmark studies on cloned human stem cells were exposed as fraudulent.

So it’s hard to say what the organizers of the Jang Young Shil Award of Science, Technology and Culture were thinking when they decided that Hwang was the most deserving candidate for this year’s plaque.

But wait, it get even better. Hwang couldn’t pick up the award because he was due in court, to face charges of embezzling government money intended for research and for violating Korea’s bioethics law.

You just can’t make up things like this and this.

May 20, 2009

Have Koreans’ faces and bodies changed?

Filed under: pseudoscience, science — extrakorea @ 6:19 am

According to the Korean Agency for Technology and Standards, Koreans’ faces and bodies have changed in the past three decades since 1979.

Overall, heads have become rounder, chins narrower, the mid-facial area longer, and cheekbones less prominent.

Body shapes are also transformed. The average height of men in their 20s is now 173.2 cm, up 6 cm from 1979. As for women, the average height is 160 cm, up 4.5 cm from 30 years ago. In 1979, men were over 10 cm shorter than Westerners, but now Korean men are just 5.3 cm and Korean women are 5.5 cm shorter than Americans.

I’m not surprised that they’re taller, since they eat better. I wonder what could be causing their heads to change shape. And I’m surprised that there are people measuring Koreans’ heads. What could be the purpose of these kinds of studies?

According to the study, both Korean men and women are now about seven heads tall. The history of Korean fashion shows men during the ancient Three Kingdoms Period were 5.9 heads tall, during the Chosun Dynasty 6.4, in 1979 6.8, and now 7.4. Women were 5.8 heads tall during the Three Kingdoms Period and are now 7.2 heads tall.

The Three Kingdoms period?! They have actual records about these kinds of things? Were people from all three kingdoms 5.9/5.8 heads tall, or were people from Koguryeo proportioned differently from those from Shilla or Paekje?

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