What It’s Like Being Single In Korea


Imagine living in an alternate reality multiverse where the middle of every month you are reminded of the choice, or lack thereof, that you made to be alo…ahem, single. In this dystopian future companies shout at you with megaphones as a reminder that you cannot participate in the capitalistic events. The preexisting couples parade around looking like near clones, donning matching garb with baby talk dialed to the max. They flaunt identical Mickey Mouse overalls and polka-dotted Converse shoes, no less. This is to showcase they have a compatible mate, and you do not. Imagine that the 14th of every month is akin to Valentine’s Day. Imagine..Valentine’s Groundhog Day. The horror.

Welcome to South Korea where the 14th of every month has a dedicated Hallmark-esque day for couples to have a good excuse to celebrate coupledom. White Day just passed. On this day men reciprocate their affections since Valentine’s Day is when women gift chocolate to their partner. This year I received a strawberry lollipop from a reluctant middle school boy. Truth be told it made the day less cringe worthy. The other couple holidays range from “take a romantic walk in the woods day”, dubbed Green Day, to Silver Day where they exchange rings and talk about future plans to get married. If these don’t strike your fancy there is self-explanatory Kiss Day as well.   


Individuals, don’t despair yet. As not to be left out there is indeed a day dedicated to singles. Enter April 14th, Black Day. We swagger in black, congregate, and lament over noodles coated in a syrupy black sauce that is obviously meant to resemble the inner workings of the single person’s heart. Because why else would you be single unless your heart pumps tar? This day is actually benevolent in its nature. It signals to the other lepers that you too are available for courtship. Just kidding. It’s called Black Day so that you mourn the fact that you are alone and nobody loves you. Not that the unsolicited questions regarding your fictional impending marriage at every work dinner, sports dinner, and at home dinners where you receive a flood of texts doesn’t haunt you enough. This is the day that encourages singles to berate themselves publicly. Shame. Shame on you for being unworthy. So while you contemplate the relationship that might have been, take a moment to coddle your melancholic tar heart and indulge in your calorie dense, nutritionally devoid meal.


In the event that I can trick someone into dating me despite my sardonic sense of humor, I’ll be sure to forego my anti-capitalist-holiday stance and celebrate Wine Day. I’ll probably indulge either way honestly. To end on a positive, perfume scented note: regardless of your status, no matter your geographic location in the world, I encourage you to celebrate you. Besides, chin up, buttercup the grass isn’t necessarily greener. Unless you are walking on a meticulously manicured lawn in a botanical garden with your beloved on Green Day. Then it could literally be greener there. We just can’t compete with that level of green.  



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