Friday, October 31, 2008

Halloween in Korea, like most things Western, is just a more comical, amusing version of the original. I've seen a lot of Halloween costumes at school in the last week and having seen just about everything I'm going to see, am ready to judge the best costume. Many kids wore dragon suits, Janine wore a panda suit complete with a giant bobbling head, and a few tiny kids wore adorable mouse or bunny suits, but the best costume by far is from the kid who dressed as Jelena Isinbayeva.

Isinbayeva is a Russian pole-vaulter who is likely better at her discipline than any athlete in the world. Isinbayeva is a two-time Olympic champion who has broken the world record 24 times and hasn't lost since 2004. Of course, she is hardly a household name, but when my Korean partner asked the girl what she was, she answered with the Korean word for "athlete". My partner asked "EE-jeen-ba-yay-ba?" and the girl nodded in the affirmative. Somehow, in Korea, Isinbayeva is a household name, though my partner explained her to me as a marathoner. Close enough.

As for me, I desperately bought the first costume I saw at a department store. It's a pirate outfit (hat, sword, eye patch, vest) for kids aged 5-8. It cost me $16 and I can only wear the hat and eye patch. Pictures will, sadly, crop up on my school's website.

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