Tag Archives: clubbing

Night Club Diary


I have always enjoyed David Sedaris’ work, be it on his occasional contributions to This American Life or his books. I’m not sure if I said it before, but I always wished that I was born a Sedaris. How fun it must be to have Amy Sedaris as a sister. Anyway, his book Me Talk Pretty One Day really connected with me because I am also trying to study Korean, and just like him at the time, my relationship with the language moved from utter despair and confusion, to learning to live with and be amused at how dumb I must sound.

The dumb fish out of water experience added with the awkwardness of the language. Let me present a semi-fictional minute-by-minute autobiographical chronicle of a club-going experience in Suwon, a satellite city of Seoul. This was written in Korean, Google-translated to English.

6:34 pm I met my boss’s son. He came with two friends. His English name is “Yun”. I said it’s not an English name. “English, no! English, no!” He was a bit angry about it. “English, yes!” he insisted.

7:50 pm After dinner, I went to the club in Suwon. I thought it was too early. In the club there was no one.

8:00 pm In the club there was no one yet. The club gave us watermelon and bananas. Because loud music my head hurt.

8:32 pm The waiter brought two women outside. They didn’t seem happy. Yun how to drink taught us. I called it Titanic.

8:47 pm Two women left. In the club there was no one else.

9:03 pm Yun said he needs patience to succeed. He started studying English with me.

9:16 pm The waiter picked up three women from outside. It was like they came from a birthday party. I brought a half-eaten cake.

9:20 pm Yun wanted me to shake the “gangsta” handshake on the girls. I don’t know that. I’m really angry.

9:28 pm Three women left. They forgot the cake.

9:30 pm I learned the price of drink. A bottle of shochu was 7,000 won. A bottle of Cass was 10,000 won.

9:41 pm I finished the cake. Yun said he needs confidence to succeed.

9:49 pm The waiter brought two women outside. They seemed really drunk. Yun talked about the military experience. Although his story was passionate, they seemed boring.

10:02 pm Two women left. In the club there was still no one else as there was a ghost.

10:03 pm I realized that Korean club is so different than Canadian club.

10:32 pm In the club there was still no one else yet. Yun’s friend we go to the Salsa Club suggested. Yun forced me to go with them.

10:45 pm We left. The fruit bowl was 50,000 won. The fruit is very expensive! Yun said he paid. He is my brother.

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Had visitors from out of town over the weekend. They were a bit younger than us and part of the itinerary was clubbing. “Clubbing.” Hadn’t done that in a while. Even before I got married, once I started going out with my future wife, the whole club scene lost its appeal to me. There was a period where I used to go to clubs quite often, that period was when people considered me “young.” But since I started almost going everywhere with my wife, clubbing is pointless. What I am doing going to a club with a woman? It’s like going to a restaurant but bringing a sandwich along. And not just that, bringing a sandwich that some stranger will inevitably grind with his crotch the minute I go get a drink or go to the bathroom.

Anyway, it was interesting watching the human drama. Guys dancing by themselves to late 90s hip-hop, a drunken idiot with a police whistle thinking he’s life of the party not knowing he’s the reason people are leaving after their first drink, men and women in their forties trying to look like young thirties. There are really no unique experiences here that people have not heard about, been warned about, or made fun of. But everyone, including myself, go and tell ourselves that tonight will be different. There is something new here, and that I am new and unique; I’ve come here for different reasons and I’m different from the rest. I’m not the attention-deprived woman grasping at the last seconds of my youth. I’m not the greasy guy hoping that the alcohol, darkness, and dehydration would increase my chances to get laid. I’m not the cynical guy watching all of these things unfold and secretly hoping that I’m a part of it. That’s why there not really much to tell here, because I’m sure most people have experienced and witnessed the same things. Still it was fun, even for a moment.

The only problem is coming home in the wee morning hours and basically making myself jet-lagged without going anywhere.

And yes, I went exactly nowhere.

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