Sunday, May 11, 2008

You learn stuff reading the newspaper

As I did in Japan, here in Korea I read the newspaper. In fact I read the same newspaper. Sort of. I read the International Herald Tribune, which is where the New York Times teams up with local papers all over the place so you get about 20 pages of international news and six to ten pages of local news. In Japan, the local news was the Asahi Shimbun. In Korea, it is the Joongang Daily.

What I wanted to comment on was some interesting facts about the laws of Korea I've learnt in the last few days from reading the IHT.

First is that doctors are not allowed to tell parents the gender of babies from the results of ultrasound scans. They can tell the parents if the baby is healthy or unhealthy, but not if it's a boy or a girl. Apparently this is because the government is worried that if people were allowed to know, they might terminate a baby girl because they want a son.

The other thing I found out is that adultery is a criminal act in Korea, and is punishable by up to two years in jail. This strikes me as a bit over the top. I don't think adultery is a good thing, but it's not a criminal act. Adultery falls into the category of things I think are a bad idea, don't want to do, but don't feel it's my right to stop anyone else doing so although I would advise against doing it if asked (other items in this category include, but are not limited to, drugs, exercise, bizarre but consensual sex, and reading romance novels).

So, there are two things to be careful of if you come to Korea

End Post
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Hewhoblogs said...

Exercise? I would put 'not doing exercise' on the list.

Didn't you go to the gym when we lived together?

Esonlinji said...

The list is half serious and half humorous. I'll leave it to you to decide which is which.

And while I did go to the gym while I was at the Boom, it is a trend that has not really carried over, although I did jog semi regularly for a few months in Japan. Partly schedule issues, partly language issues, partly laziness.