Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Rocking the Soccer 'Burbs

In my never-ending search for more people to play soccer with, I’ve acquired a Tuesday night group out in Daeti. Gyu, my soccer savior, helped connect me to these boys who (he says) use “tough language” and, as (I’ve noted) smoke between games.
Nancy picked me up from the airport when
I first got here, and has the cutest southern
twang in the world.

I’m not sure exactly how to describe the skeptical Korean face. Nancy (pictured left, disgustingly fit, and nicely cheery) calls it The Korean Stare. We get it a lot in class.

Actual excerpt:

“In the picture, do you think he is walking proudly *point*, or absent-mindedly? *point* Raise your hand *demonstrate* if you think proudly.” 3 hands and 47 Korean Stares. “Raise your hand *demonstrate* if you think absent-mindedly.” No hands and 32 Korean Stares (everyone else isn’t looking at me).

But the stare I get when I lace up my cleats, while difficult to read, is possible to guess. 3 parts confused, 2 parts skeptical, and 1 part completely disoriented. As soon as I start playing, it’s mayhem. If it didn’t resemble the utter disbelief one might expect from someone who has never seen a pet poodle roll over and play dead, it would be flattering.

A favourite from Jeju.
I got cheers and hollers from even the simplest of moves and whenever I actually did something good, the boys in the stands would faint and weep and make marriage proposals.

I am joking, of course. But I have gotten a marriage proposal before (pre-Korea). And their reactions here are similarly ridiculous.

That said, of course I love being the girl rocking the guy’s world. I love the catcalls at the boy I just beat one-on-one; I love watching them gradually realize I won’t break if they touch me; I love turning the 2 parts skeptical, 1 part disoriented stare into a thumbs-up and an invitation back next week.

Because more soccer is never a bad thing.

I promise (maybe) that I'll stop writing about soccer and start writing about...Korean culture and things. Maybe. 

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