What a parking lot says about society

The parking lot below my window…

All black, white, or silver, with one blue van and 1 blue truck, and one white morning spec.

Notice the parking stripes.  See how they’re closed boxes?  Maybe I’m reading too much into a parking lot, but this is definitely a stay-within-the-lines kind of place with limited choices.

5 thoughts on “What a parking lot says about society

  1. After last night, I am even more amazed of how much you have taken on in Korea. My KBS appearance was cut short and I was left feeling emotionally spent from the experience.

    I thought about you as I anxiously attempted to fall asleep this morning….and tried to imagine myself in your shoes…..I couldn’t…just imagining it, overwhelmed me.

    Too many pitfalls in adoption…not knowing our first language is another loss we are expected to accept the blame for, even though we had no choice.

    From adoptee to adoptee…..you do not owe anyone a reason for your loss of the Korean language.

    The only place I do not feel categorized or boxed in like the Korean parking lots, is at home. There is nothing like unconditional love!

    For today, my wish is for you to have a moment of feeling at home…..

  2. OMG! I lost track of what day it is! I will check into GOAL’s youtube channel beginning next week until your episode shows up! I just want to put a face to your voice…

    There is something freeing about going through that experience, though, at least there was for me. To have done all that you can do, to have risked humiliation and just put it all out there means you’ve humbled yourself about as far as a person can go. And even though most people can’t imagine allowing oneself to be exploited like that, to have your personal laundry aired out in the open like that for better ratings or temporary absolution of the viewers, or whatever, you realize you’re ennobled in a way. You’re not the exploiter. You were wronged and now you are decent and true. That’s something nobody can take away from you. There is righteous anger, and then there is also righteous knowledge and calm. It is vindication of a sort. Like for the history books. A census report of what we are, that we exist.

    Thank you for the wish. Once in awhile, once in awhile, I’m just in a park that could be anywhere, enjoying a bird that could be anywhere, hearing kids laughing, etc. and then I feel at home.

    I think this feeling of being emotionally spent is kind of omni-present to the extent that it’s normal now! I’m sure it’s not healthy, just like my smoking cigarettes is constricting my blood vessels and drinking too much coffee is burning out my adrenal glands, and the emotional upset fucks with my diurnal clock, so there is no morning or night anymore. From 5 pm to some-time-before school begins again, it is just work/nap/pace/nap/eat/nap, etc. repeat from across.

    Yeah, I really need that cat or dog or boyfriend soon!

  3. Wait a minute – your appearance got cut short? was that due to technical difficulties or a phone-in or time limits or?

    That’s horrible! You must feel like an unfinished sentence…

    The day I was on, someone forgot to tell the screencast adoptee that they were finished and wouldn’t be filming her anymore. She was just sitting there on standby, waiting. Everyone on the set and with GOAL were feeling horrible for her because nobody had a moment to tell her she could relax and thank you…

  4. I gave my day one day of self pity and so it’s over now! I have brushed myself off and ready to begin ….again!

    Yes, KBS omitted 3 questions during my interview due to time constraints. I could list the reasons which have been running through my head the last 24 hrs, but my day of self pity is over.

    Someone very important to me (a fatherly figure), recently told me that he watched a tv special on the brains of Koreans. During the show, he thought about me and concluded the reason why my adoptive mother did not relate to me(and still doesnt get me) is because her brain doesnt work the same as mine. Basically she doesnt have the capability. Growing up, I felt it was something I lacked and as I grew older, I felt that I just wasnt the daughter she wanted. Most times now, I feel she lives in her own world – it’s the only protection she has. I have accepted for the most part, that my mother and I measure success and happiness much differently.

    You can relate to what I have been through my life since we both battled abuse. It takes so much energy just to survive and much more to sort ourselves out. All this, while handling life’s normal ups and downs. Trying to figure out Korean culture and my adoption was pushed to the bottom. Not by choice, but necessity.

    For those who know me at the surface….they may think that I havent lived up to my potential. For those who truly know me….they know that I am exactly where I want to be.

    There still is a part of me, buried in a crevice who wants to feel accepted, loved and nurtured by my mom and dad. To feel unconditional love. To be unjudged. That’s why I decided to put myself out there. I now feel safe enough within myself to hope for something that I have always wanted but never experienced. It’s been a long journey to get to this place. I still dont have all the answers…I still dont know how things will work out, I still dont possess all the knowledge, but …it’s my way of reaching outside the box.

  5. Amen to all you said. Sorry such a short response, but amen. Sounds like we have/had the same mom.

    I feel like a jerk for not having warned you or thought about telling you how Korean media works…isn’t it funny that I’ve only been here a few months, yet know these things?

    Basically, their agenda is not so sophisticated, even though their technology is. Think “Hard Copy” or shows such as that, and that is where the very best in Korean journalism is at. They’re seeking maximum sensationalism and pulling of heartstrings. They will come and tell you they’re shooting this story on this and that angle, and then air it and it will look and sound completely different. There’s not a lot of honor in that, and they’re giving you five minutes of fame, so you can’t complain. This is why a lot of groups don’t trust the media here. And yet, they need the attention of course.

    From a personal standpoint, I was upset at how I was portrayed in the magazine article, but I also understand they needed a “victim” to humanize the story. When Koroot gave me a bouquet of flowers for my personal sacrifice, I uncharacteristically took it with no “oh you shouldn’t have”s. It was awesome of Rev. Kim to recognize that. The flowers were very much earned. In a smaller way, every person who goes on the KBS show and tells their story on-air and pleas for any information about who they were, etc., is doing the exact same thing. Every person who braves the media as an adoptee is establishing the path of evidence that we exist. They (you) all deserve roses…

    The questions KBS asked me also were quite different from the pre-interview survey, and they skipped several questions during the on air broadcast. I’ll bet they do this with everyone who goes on the show: Koreans are just expecting it while us westerners are like, what the?

    Also, Koreans are TERRIBLE at explaining things/being comforting. This drives me crazy every day, as I have always gone to great lengths to explain what’s going on to people so they understand and not feel anxious…at first I thought this was a language problem. But now, I just think it’s their culture. They are inured to anxiety – they don’t see that it’s abnormal, and if they see it they can’t understand why we don’t suck it up. I am becoming less and less accepting of culture all the time…As a collective response of a people to the pressures on their lives, it is also something that can change, and the dismissal, “it’s just our culture” (i.e., get used to it) just isn’t good enough, when that kind of “culture” throws away babies and kills their kids with pressure…but I digress.

    Having seen a little western media in action as well, I can say that Korean tv doesn’t have the same kind of “time is money” attitude. They just have the “omg, I don’t have enough time” attitude. They rush around everywhere and tell each other, “bali bali!” which I think means “hurry up!” Things get done. Corners get cut. But the show goes on.

    On the positive side, they WANT to cover everything. I mean, like the six or more hours I spent for the Hankyeoreh article (of which there is just a page or two) or the 30+ hours on the documentary (of which there is about 30 minutes), I think those who produce and write these things, including the KBS producers, they have a true interest in improving society and a kind of voyeuristic exploitation of their position to get into the minds of their subjects.

    But bali bali the show must go on. And they have a maddening audience to appeal to – one that just doesn’t want the details. I don’t know which came first, the maddening audience or the maddening media…

    I know I don’t write enough about the charm of Korea and its people, and it IS romantic here and exciting and stylish and sometimes generous. But the more I learn about society the more insane this place makes me. So many Koreans yearn to be free, but it operates so differently here than ANYWHERE else on the planet, that many end up returning because they can’t deal with life out there. Will the work here cause me to stay, like it has my friend Jane, or will I find someone to love and be a reluctant citizen like my friend Lisa, or will I leave screaming, or will I become so Korean I end up incapable of living anywhere else?

    OK. I’m totally rambling and have to go. Just wanted to tell you about the media. No simple answers to anything about anything here.

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