"Look! He has a camera!" (September 2000)
(Please read this before you copy our photo or text.)

Sometimes it seems as if one of Koreans' national pastimes is taking pictures of each other. Go to a scenic landmark and you can watch the parade as one family after another poses in front of the statue or monument or waterfall or whatever, while papa clicks the shutter. You just want to shoot the landmark? Sorry, my friend, that's not a choice. The clicking Koreans are part of the scenery.

Oddly, the photographer doesn't have to be anyone they know. The camera is kind of like Pavlov's bell, especially to kids. In downtown Kangnung, I set up for a photo of Be and Be Coffeehouse (gone now, alas; I miss the mellow atmosphere and the even mellower coffee every time we visit). Right on cue, this group of teenagers leapt into position with the standard peace-sign pose. So here they are.

Be and Be is, or was, off to the right and up a floor. At least I got the sign in the picture.

By the way, have I told you that I think Korea has some of the world's cutest kids? Yes? Well, I just told you again.

Home | Album | Journal | Institute | Teaching | Culture | Links