Wednesday, August 22, 2007

about those biker gangs

I've written about those wussy little gangster wannabes who zip noisily around Namsan on their scooters after midnight. They occasionally make the news (as they did recently). On Tuesday, I told my Level 3 students that I wasn't impressed by a bunch of guys on scooters and mopeds, and one girl's reaction to my remark made me laugh out loud. She said: "I think those gangsters are actually food delivery guys who stole the company scooters."

I think my student was serious, but I laughed because I immediately had this picture of a Korea overflowing with secret gangs of Delivery Dudes-- guys who putt-putt along the streets on their tiny scooters, weaving through crowds, scowling at passersby with battle-hardened stoicism, giving other Delivery Dudes cryptic gangsta hand signs as they pass each other in the alleyways, using vulgar slang to refer to their mundane cargo-- calling pizza "a skank," calling Chinese food "crack" and so on.

Imagine the turf wars. A new Chinese place opens up in an area heretofore dominated by the pizza guys. Imagine ugly street-fighter taekwondo with chunks of fried pork and pepperoni thrown like shuriken. Imagine scores settled with brandished woks, pizza cutters, and those ever-sharp kimbap steak knives. Who owns the corner of Saem-gil and Minari-gil, huh?


The gangs police their own dead after any rumble, and the dead are a mess: chopsticks rammed up foramen magnums, sushi crammed into eye sockets, Western cutlery jammed into urethras, entire pizzas stomped into colons, thoracic cavities filled with still-steaming ddeokbokki, biceps femoris flesh carefully sliced and placed on California rolls, nipples filleted and coated with wasabi. And woe betide the oblivious citizen who blunders into any gang war: he's likely to be chained up, then drawn and quartered by pairs of whooping scooterboys riding off in four directions-- his sundered body another meal for the rats and pigeons. This is Seoul: a city where, thanks to the biker gangs, the vermin have a taste for human flesh.

Wa chi yo asseu an deu kwi cho bi ching!


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