12 September 2010


Die-hard consumerism in Myeongdong, in which I happily partook when I accidentally-on-purpose stumbled upon the only size 31 x 34 jeans anywhere EVAR in a country of 25 x 28-sized women. After discovering that they actually fit & flattered, I did a little Happy Dance and screeched with glee, hugged the rare jewel tightly and proceeded to the check out line (but not before adding a couple of shirts, a skirt, and whale-print skivvies to the pile). Damage to the most recent paycheck was a surprisingly minimal 60,000 won (about $50), considering I'd have gladly paid that and then some for the jeans alone. But then! While messin around in a different store with these ridiculous 63,000-won tubes of fabric claiming to be, when twisted/belted/folded/knotted correctly, double-hooded scarves/dresses/skirts/togas, I kind of reversed my previous purchases by shoplifting a belt. A red, 1.5" wide woven belt, chosen to accessorize our fabric-tube experiments in the store, a thrift store-knockoff worth 51,000 won. This whole belt theft was, mind you, completely, 100% by accident. The belt is, you see, a Korean-size Medium (which is about equivalent to an American XS), and doesn't even fit around my ribcage. So even if I liked the thing, and wanted to use it for bisecting some top, I couldn't. What happened was, between experimenting Tube "Styles" on my new friend and fashion guinea pig (who is approximately 5'2", and whose ribcage is indeed a Korean M), I had draped the belt around my neck, using it as a convenient hanger, for the next Tube Style that called for cinching. When we'd enough made fun of/marveled at the absurdity/genius of marketing a one-yard length of fabric serged into a tube with a price tag of a round-trip train ticket across the country, we did one final lap around the store, minutes before closing, and sashayed out the door, saying goodbye to every last one of the 12 bored salespeople. Outside, we stopped at a street vendor, discussed our next move, and lingered at the entrance to the subway in the cooling summer Seoul evening, in no particular hurry to get anywhere. Only then, three crowded blocks from the store and 15 minutes past its closing, did I discover 51,000 won in the form of an unattractive belt dangling from my neck. Thus, a moral dilemma: do I keep the useless belt, hidden away in the closet, til I figure out which of my friends would don such an accessory? Do I take it back to the store, wearing it around my neck, attempting to explain to Korean employees (who doubtfully speak enough English to really understand what happened), risking shoplifting prosecution? Do I hide the thing in my bag, go back to the store, and sneak it onto the rack (or anywhere, really)? Subtlety isn't my strongest suit, so the third option probably isn't a good idea. Any insight will be welcomed and appreciated. Maybe you'll even get a free belt outta the deal.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'm going to need to see a picture of the belt before I can understand the problem.