April 24, 2013

Arnab and the Plastic Factory

In most parts of the world men shave their chins. In South Korea the girls do. The guys are permanently trapped in a state of prepubescence, so the most they can hope for is some peach fuzz. The girls are not looking to get rid of any stubble, but the chin itself. Those with prominent jawlines or rectangular shaped heads get them chiseled down into more elegant forms. Chin shaving is just one of the many surgical procedures that are prevalent in the most superficial society on the planet. Modifications that endow the girl with a more three dimensional appearance are also common, such as nose jobs and breast augmentations.

Due to the high demand for cosmetic surgery, clinics can be found with almost the same frequency as coffee shops and convenience stores. Gangnam proudly promotes itself as the capital of medical tourism, with affordable prices luring in many Chinese and Japanese women. Subway stations are plastered with surgery advertisements. When I first moved to Seoul I stayed at a hotel with an in-house surgery clinic on the second floor. A van with tinted windows ferried customers directly from airport to the hotel, where they could get altered and rest in their hotel room without ever having to step outside during their recovery period.

While a little nip and tuck might increase the perceived societal worth of K-girls, nothing short of a full body transplant would help the large majority of the male populace. Usually they accompany the beauties, paying for all their purchases with their meagre yet hard earned salaries or from the allowance they get from their parents. The guys seem more like comic relief than leading men, varying in range from stone-faced businessmen to slack-jawed halfwits dressed in tight garments harkening back to the court jesters of yore. Shockingly and painfully, the girls are still enamoured with these unremarkable men while completely avoiding the breathtaking spectacle that is the Indo-Canadian Temptation.


"All truths are easy to understand once they are discovered; the point is to discover them." ~ Galileo Galilei