Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Bits and pieces

Happy leap year day!

Feel like playing soccer inside Deoksugung Palace's Seokjojeon? Apparently in the late 1960s you could (sort of):
At Seokjojeon, for example, an indoor football field was installed in a second floor corridor, according to an article in the June 4, 1968, issue of the JoongAng Ilbo.
That article, titled 'Trouble over Deoksu Palace's beauty being marred by indoor soccer field,' can be found here.
A civilian operated indoor soccer field installed on the second floor passageway connecting Deoksu Palace's Seokjojeon hall and the art gallery is compromising the elegance of the old palace.
So, it wasn't quite inside Seokjojeon, then. The article says a Mr. Jeong had been given permission since April to operate the indoor field (charging 120-180 won per hour) in order to prevent those in attendance from engaging in loose public morals in the area. (Hat tip to Hamel.)

Jon Dunbar has a good article about vintage Korean rock music here.
Nowadays, vinyl albums of bands from that era cost a pretty penny, with original vinyl from Shin Jung-hyeon rarely available for less than 100,000 won, but back in 1995 when Hasegawa Yohei first visited Korea, he claims the same records were available for as low as 500 won. [...]
I've mentioned Hasegawa before. Things have changed since 1995, however:
"Every record store owner would tell me the same thing: Japanese record collectors had long since bought up all the really good records."
On the same topic, I found this video on youtube, by Kim Chu-ja which was obviously made before the great pot crackdown of December 1975:

The song also appears in different (and better) form on the great album 'Jang Hyun and the Men,' which you might be able to find here.

One of the features I really like at ROK Drop is 'Faces in Korea,' in which GI Korea looks at foreigners who visited Korea in the past. Some good examples are Hank Aaron, Robert Kennedy, and Muhammad Ali. His recent review of the film Champion, which I looked at here years ago, also links to an interesting article about how the fight with Kim Deuk-gu changed Ray Mancini.

Also worth noting at ROK Drop are the recent changes to SOFA, and this link to an article from 2003 - fun times.

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