스마트폰을 쓰지 않는 사람이 어디에 있을까?
자, 오늘 아침에 대한민국의 수도권 지하철을 타고 가고 있을 때는 다른 승객들을 볼 수 있었지만 앉아 있던 승객들은 나를 볼 수 없는 것 같았어요.무슨 작고 밝은 스크린 때문이에요.
우리 기차에 앉아 있던 승객들은 24명이었는데, 그때 꼭 23명이 스마트폰을 보기만 (96%) 했어요. "스마트폰 중독"이 있는 대한민국인은 많다고 하죠?
미국 지하철에 있는 스마트폰 습관 비교할 수 있어서 다음 단락부터 쓸게요.
미국큰 도시에도 지하철이 있기는 하지만 2014년에도 미국을 여행하는 어느 서울에서 온 한국인은 미국의 지하철 열차에 들어가자마자 놀라는 것이 있을 수도 있어요: 미국 지하철에 있는 승객들 중에 "종이"신문을 읽는 사람이 많고 "종이"책을 읽는 사람이 많군요! 스마트폰을 쓰는 지하철 승객보다 "종이"를 쓰는 손님이 거의 3배나 있던데요...!
Where are the Non-Smart-Phone-Using People?
Well now, today in the morning, as I was riding in the Seoul area's subway system, I could see the other passengers, but the others, seated, could not see me, it seemed. This was because of some small, bright screens.
There were 24 seated passengers in our train car, and at that time a full 23 of them (96%) were only looking at their smartphones. They do say that in the Republic of Korea, there are a lot of "smartphone addicts", don't they.
In the USA, smartphone use in the subway is very different, so let me write about it next.
In big cities in the USA, we have subways too, but even in 2014 now, a Korean from Seoul who enters a subway car will immediately be surprised by something: A lot of the subway passengers in the USA will be reading "paper" newspapers and "paper" books! As I recall, something like three times as many people use "paper" in the subway [in the USA] as use smartphones....!
I wrote the below in Korean two weeks ago and posted it to an online forum where people exchange corrections. Some Koreans corrected a few errors. An English translation is next to it (on PC) or below it (mobile devices).
Thanksgiving Day 2014 passed for me without any indication whatsoever that it was a holiday. That's because it isn't a holiday where I am (not counting the U.S. military bases).
On the plus side, I figured out the amusing meaning of the Korean word for "turkey":
In Post-246 ("Here Comes Bodo Ramelow") I revisited my time in Germany in 2007, a subject about which I think I've rarely written on these pages. One of the things that impressed me there was the myriad of active political and quasi-political movements whirling around. If you read #246, you can see a slice of this.
I've been thinking more about the election result I mentioned in #246, in Thuringia (a German state formerly of East Germany), a place I passed through a time or two or three. The results of their recent state election:
* 28 seats were won by Die Linke (successor of the East German Communist Party) [31% of seats]
"Die Linke" (English: The Left), which is the reformed Communist Party, won nearly one-in-three seats in this eastern-German state's legislature. By the way, here is the top banner on the website of party's Berlin chapter:
(It's Herren Marx und Engels. These are life-size statues, put up during the Communist era, and still stand in central Berlin. I passed right by them many-a-time. They are in a big open square which is generally deserted.)
Those in the east voting for Linke are generally older people who actually lived as adults under the Communist East German government. Is this, then, a partial vindication of that system and its government?
Maybe. But hear this:
I wrote this essay in mid-November 2014. It received a good grade but has some minor grammar mistakes.
An English translation follows.
Here is a translation into English of the above Korean original (both written by me:)
A German state will have a "(neo-)Communist" leader for the first time since the fall of Communist rule twenty-five years ago, I read today.
The state will be Thuringia (Thüringen), formerly belonging to East Germany.
The leader will be somebody called Bodo Ramelow (born 1956). Here he is:
I know what you're thinking. "He doesn't look much like a Communist."
Or, maybe you're thinking "Bodo Ramelow sounds like a pro wrestler's name."
I agree with both sentiments.
As I was writing about "November 11th, 1918" (post-242), another anniversary was being commemorated. The 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall.
I think historians of the future ought to use the two (11-11-1918 to circa 11-11-1989) as bookends, to fence off a coherent era of history. It is convenient, or poetic, or something special anyway, that the period is exactly seventy-one years to the day. Those seventy-one years were an era of wild political-ideological struggle, unseen, really, before or since.
I had the opportunity to see the Charlie Brown Halloween special I'd seen as a young boy.
Linus evangelizes on behalf of the Great Pumpkin, a supernatural being he believes in. He is convinced that the Great Pumpkin will appear on Halloween Night in the pumpkin patch, and plans an all-night vigil. He tries to get others to join him. No one is convinced. Charlie Brown's little sister Sally finally gets involved, but she is completely uninterested in the metaphysics of the Great Pumpkin. Rather, she wants to spend time alone with Linus, whom she likes. The attraction is not reciprocal, but Linus gladly takes her on as another disciple of the Great Pumpkin.
Charles Schulz (the creator of the Charlie Brown universe) wrote and directed the Halloween special in 1966. It first aired on TV in October '66. Schulz was born in 1922 in Minnesota and was raised in the Lutheran Church. He remained an active Christian till his death.
At one point, Schulz has Linus write a letter to the Great Pumpkin saying:"Everyone tells me you are a fake, but I believe in you. P.S., If you really are fake, don't tell me. I don't want to know."
Night comes; the Great Pumpkin doesn't show up; Sally gets annoyed and storms off; Linus stays loyal and remains at his post. The next thing we know it's 4 AM, and -- shivering and having fallen asleep still at his vigil post -- Linus is dragged inside and put to bed.
On the morning of November 1st, the show ends with this exchange:
As I write, it is November 11th. It was on this day in 1918 that the fighting ended in what we now call "World War One" (famously, they arranged the ceasefire to begin at 11 AM). This is why the USA's Veteran's Day is November 11th.
One of my great-grandfathers was in the U.S. Army at that time, but he never left the USA. I wrote about what I've learned of his experience in post-224 ("My Great-Grandfather's Piece of World War I"). He was at Camp Devens, MA. Here is a picture of one of the companies garrisoned (not his) at Camp Devens in 1918:
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