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In a move that the president of the International Front for the Liberation of Outrageous  Gayness, or I-FLOG, described as “Absolutely Fabulous!”,  North Korea Wednesday announced the legalization of gay marriage.  The announcement was met with a mix of astonishment and utter confusion worldwide.

More on the story later….

The Mayors of four regional cities, Chungju, Chongju, Chonju, and Chinju announced their intention to merge and form a new mega-city, to be named New ChungChongChonChinJu City Tuesday morningat a meeting held, ironically, in Jeju.  According to a spokesman representing the four mayors, the cities felt it was necessary to combine in order to compete with Seoul as well as the nearby planned Sejong City.  Originally the mayors proposed that the new city be named New ChungjuChongjuChonjuChinju city, but some felt that name was too Ju-ish.

New Ch'ungCh'ongChonChin City

The new city, pictured above, will stretch from Chungcheonbukdo all the way to the southern coast near Chinju.  The combined population of 1.8 million will catapult New ChungChongChonChinJu City into the top tier of Korean cities.  In addition to the large population, the city will be by far the largest municipal entity in the country.

The spokesman mentioned other intangible benefits for the new city.  “In the past, many foreigners were confused by the similarity between the four cities’ names.  Heck, even many Koreans would get confused.  Now everybody will know exactly which city we’re talking about when we say New ChungChongChonChinJu City.”

Certain details of the merger remain to be finalized, but the four cities have agreed on a new city slogan.  They decided to combine the four existing slogans and hired a local Hagwon instructor to come up with the best combined slogan.    Rebecca Lewis, a 28 year-old from Brisbane,  struggled to make a decent-sounding combination.  Finally she managed to dub the new city, New ChungChongChonChinJu City-The Happy, Vigourous, Vibrant Charm and Asianart City Worth Living In.

The city of Seoul announced this afternoon that it had come up with a creative new approach to stop the seemingly never-ending incursions of protestors into Seoul Plaza.  Starting in October, the much-loved circle of green grass in the heart of  the citywill be surrounded by high-tech gas-fired ring of fire.  The system, when activated during periods of impending protests, will shoot a scorching 3 meter wall of fire all around the plaza.

Pictured in an artist’s rendering, the ring of fire will be a great improvement over the previous scheme of surrounding the plaza with a solid wall of buses, also pictured above.  Many tourists to Seoul had previously complained about the unsightly bus circle.  One tourist, contacted via email, wrote, “I really enjoyed the protests, that’s what you expect to see in Seoul, but the ring of buses made the city feel just, so unwelcoming.  The Ring of Fire will be a great improvement.  I can picture trapped protesters standing across the wall of fire from riot police.  That will be really dramatic.  I’ll definitely return next Spring, hopefully the protesters will be pissed about something”

The first ever winner of the Innaugural glorious production, North Korean Idol, was announced on Saturday in Pyngyang’s Kim Jong Il stadium.  The winner, long considered a front runner in the competition, was the Great Leader himself, Kim Jong-Il.

Pictured above just moments after being named the first North Korean Idol, Mr. Kim, fighting away tears, reportedly broke into an impromptu song and dance routine, much to the delight of the throngs of adoring fans.  Teenage girls, middle-aged women, and grandmothers were joined by young boys, middle-aged men and grandfathers in a rapturous applause that lasted for over 30 minutes.

One middle-aged woman, sobbing with joy,  spoke about her feelings at the announcement of her country’s first Idol.  “He is the greatest singer of all time.  When he sings, birds fall silent, flowers bloom, and rainbows spontaneously appear on the tops of many mountains.  When I hear his voice, I feel lighter than air, and I must fight away the overwhelming feelings of pure ecstasy.”

During the competition, Mr. Kim successfully defeated other competitors, including the last semi-finalist, a four-year-old phenom who gladly accepted second prize.  Most of Mr. Kim’s performances were classic North Korean songs, ranging from traditional folk tunes to rousing revolutionary denunciations of hated American Imperialists.  However, Mr. Kim also showed great versatility and even sang one song in English.

According to its annual report on the state of kimchi-making in Korea, the KimChi Institute in Gwangju claims that for the first time ever, more foreigners than Koreans are making kimchi .  Long considered a staple of the Korean diet and culture, kimchi -making is rapidly becoming something that is done largely by foreign residents and tourists.

According to the report, outside of restaurants and large Korean food companies, virtually the only people still bothering to make kimchi are “Japanese tourists and the wives of foreign diplomats and businessmen.”  One enterprising company, KimChi4You, is planning to open several small factories at several locations where Japanese tourists like to visit.  The plan is to encourage the tourists to experience traditional Korean culture, combining kimchi-making with underhanded labor practices.

KimChi4You CEO Kim Yong-Chul is proud of his innovative business plan.  “The Japanese tourists will provide high-level free labor for my business.  They are quick learners and follow directions very well.  I am confident that my company will be able to undercut even the Chinese kimchi makers.”  Asked if he has any plans to employ western kimchi makers, Kim was rather blunt…”No way.  So many of the western kimchi-makers have a few glasses of soju before they try their hand at kimchi-making.  They laugh and joke around, and they just don’t wrap the cabbage as well as a Japanese housewife.”

 

 

Stung by the ever-depreciating value of the Korean won, many young Korean women are replacing previous international tours to exotic places like Bali and Bangkok with more economic day trips to an even more exotic destination, the back alleys of Itaewon.  The prime driver behind this new phenomenon is the pursuit of numerous clouds of cologne that waft behind all manners of non-Korean gentlemen.

 

 

The tours are the brainchild of Ji-Young  Lee, a twenty-something unemployed travel agent.  Recently laid off due to the slumping tour business, Ji-Young was amazed by the variety and overwhelming power of the various “cologne cultures” that she encountered in various areas of Itaewon. 

“There is just so much to smell here!” she eagerly explained.  “The tours have three primary focuses.  In general we divide them into US military, gay guys, and for the really amazing finale, we take the ladies to Haebongcheon where we spend about an hour walking behind African guys.” 

According to JiYoung, the African guys are the easiest to locate, who often, especially if they are with a few friends, can leave a cologne cloud of up to one hundred meters.  The tour groups usually consist of between 4 to 7 young Korean ladies, who leave Itaewon with a greater appreciation of the diversity of colognes.  One participant, when asked about the tour, stated, “I can not believe how good Itaewon smells.  I always was afraid to come here, but now I realize it is the most fragrant place in all of Korea.”

As of this September, a record 273,905 Koreans are said to be residing in castles, according to a spokeswoman for Lotte Construction.  “Never before have so many humans reached the highest level of living…..High Class life in Castle!!!,” She enthusiastically stated. “Our company’s strategic plan is for 1/5 of Koreans, over 10,000,000 people, to enjoy the royal lifestyle and live in our Castles.”

 

According to a housing industry spokesman, Kim Bum-gyu, Koreans are increasingly living in more than just castles.  “Many thousands of our people now live in Opulence, Brownstones, and other high class, residences.” 

One would think that the Castle residents would be universally satisfied with their aristocratic digs, but that is not always the case.  One woman who has actually lived in 3 different castles, one in Daechi, one in Mokdong, and one in Sinsa, has sworn off the Castle lifestyle.  “I used to think living in a Castle would make me happy, but since I moved to a Brownstone two years ago, I realized there is more to life than Castles.”

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