Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Banana kung-fu...

Just when things are starting to seem normal in a foreign land the simplest concept, such as a street merchant selling fruit, can totally weird you out.

I got home from work and went to the local butcher shop and bought myself some bolgogi beef (thinly shaved beef) .

Next I bought some peppers from a guy selling vegetables outta the back of his truck in his usual location on the corner outside the bank. Him and three of his old buddies were hanging out as usual and he scammed me into buying way more peppers than I needed.

Well, it wasn't really a scam because I got them for a fraction of the grocery store price.

I got seven shiny, fresh peppers in all for 3000 Won (2 red, 3 yellow, and 3 orange). At the grocery store it costs the same amount for one green and one red.

I only wanted to buy three peppers and the price was 2000 Won but then his buddies started saying some shit I couldn't understand and he put four more in my bag and only asked for another 1000 Won.

It was easier to just buy the peppers than to say no, then take them outta my bag, and then try to explain to him that I didn't wanna take advantage of the incredible deal he so generously decided to offer to some comical white man. They all seemed rather excited and pleased with themselves after I pulled out the extra 1000 Won.

Next time I shop from them they'll probably try to sell me everything on the truck, and if the deal's good enough, I might just buy it.

Here's what I cooked with all those peppers and beef.

The picture doesn't do it justice. Seriously.

But I'm off track here. This post isn't supposed to have anything to do with the purchasing of peppers. Banana's are the plant that I was intending to so gloriously shine the spotlight upon.

So I'm heading home to begin cooking some supper and in the distance I can hear what can only be described as "kung-fu" noise. It's kinda hard to write them out here but I'll try. "Yah... Tow-Gee-Dah... Un... Yea... Ah... Oh... Yah... Tow-Gee-Dah-Shin-Ya..." and so on.

These sounds kept getting louder as I walked toward my apartment building and by now they were really starting to puzzle me. I get to the cross walk and I'm waiting to cross and the noise is very near me now. Let's just say I was hot... Hot... HOt... HOT on the trail.

I spot a street merchant across the street with the back of his truck loaded with bananas and nothing else. It sounded like the noise was coming from his truck but it couldn't be. It just made no sense. Why would a banana merchant be using kung-fu noises to sell his fruit of choice?

The light turned to the little green man signaling that it was time for me to cross the street and approach Bruce Lee and his banana bed truck. Sure enough the sounds were blaring from the cab of his typical Korean Hyundai and I was baffled.

Truly baffled.

I even attempted to ask a Korean what the banana truck was yelling but he didn't understand English and was of no use to solving this monumental mystery.

After I ate I went out intending to walk by the banana blare with my digital camera to record the sounds and share it with my Korean co-teachers in hopes of becoming enlightened, but sadly, the yellow yelper had already my trail and had left to go to a safer refuge.

I can't figure this one out. Not even a clue. If anything, the annoying sounds would only serve to repel customers to a more quiet, relaxing shopping atmosphere. Any ideas?

I just pray that when I eat breakfast tomorrow, the banana, which will be lying next to my peanut butter and jam sandwich, doesn't decide to jump out of its skin and kick my sorry little ass.


Anonymous said...

greg here...

I can't believe you brought your stolen munsu cafeteria tray to korea with you. that's amazing.

Richard said...

Eating off of trays is a way of life man... I'm more (or less) evolved than most...