Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Korean Winter Wear

It's official, I'm old. Too old, at least, to understand the fashion choices of Korean youth. The average daytime high for January has been around -7C with lows as bitter as -17C, so why are young women prancing around in shorts? Shorts! Here's a 21 year-old student of mine arriving for class at 8am this morning sans hat, gloves, winter coat, and (of all things) pants. The only thing 'winter' about her outfit is the scarf. Of my 5 female students, 2 of them regularly wear shorts & mini skirts year-round. When I ask them if they're cold, they reply "that's ok". I haven't quite deciphered if "that's ok" translates to "I'm not cold" or "I'm cold, but it doesn't matter because I'm so fashion conscious that I'd rather freeze to death and chance sickness than dress warmly and look like an old fart (like you do teacher)". I think it's probably the latter.

And speaking of old farts, I have a lot of time every morning while waiting at the bus stop to people watch and am bewildered by the number of 'older' people (anyone over 25, really) who think it important to protect their faces but not their heads. My mornings are a sea of surgical masks and bare heads. Are winter hats just a Canadian thing?

1 comment:

  1. It's 20 degrees here in NYC right now, and I wear 2 layers of thick leggings to work under my pencil skirts (dress pants are just not flattering on me), then take them off when I get to work (our office is really hot with all the computers). I often see people in thin tights or dresses with no tights at all and do not understand it. My husband also often refuses to wear a hat unless it is absolutely necessary - I don't get it!