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Korea vs California

July 3, 2014

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It’s standard for us to do these comparative TL;DRs whenever we come back from traveling. It seems like we’ve done two of these in a row now: our last one was on China vs Korea, and this week we’re talking about California vs Korea. Woot!

Of course, we’re not talking about all of California in this video. We’re just talking about our experiences and what we’ve noticed. Even our LA friends were surprised when we talked about how friendly everyone is to us! So, I’m sure your experiences won’t line up with ours in many ways, and we’d love to hear where they differ!

There were a few things we didn’t talk about in this video, though, so we’ll mention them here:

LA Traffic

I’ll hear no complaints about it at all, thank you very much! I’ve seen shows in which people complain about the traffic. Anthony Bourdaine complained about it, and had a montage of people complaining about it. You have nothing to complain about! ORRRR…we were just exceptionally lucky. We never hit a single traffic jam. Things moved slower sometimes, but it was overall very smooth everywhere we drove. In Korea, the traffic sucks all day long. We just crawl to the studio going 20-30km an hour most of the time, even at 11PM at night on a Wednesday. It’s always bad here. LA Traffic, not that bad at all!

Pretentious Restaurant Names

Is it just me, or do fancy pants restaurants have single syllable names too often? FEED. LIME. GRUB. FRESH. Pfft. Too hoity toity. All of them with their minimalistic font and take on deconstructed reconstructed food. I want to hear a name like “Roscoe’s Chicken and Waffles.” HELLS YEAH! That’s what I’ll eat. I won’t trust any restaurant with one syllable for a name, and I saw a few like that in LA.

Creative Food

Now, this might be a bit debatable, and I imagine if you’re a patriotic Korean you might get defensive on this point, but – from our brief experiences – there seems to be a lot more of a creative spirit for cuisine in California than there is in Korea.

We went to so many restaurants that offered so many different new kinds of foods. Different flavour combinations, fusion, techniques. Just…whoa. In Korea, though, we don’t really see that much diversity in cuisine. A sundubu is a sundubu is a sundubu. Where’s a Mexican sundubu? Or an Indian naengmyeon? Most restaurants we walk by in Korea offer “Salad Steak Sandwich Pasta Wine Beer Coffee,” in which they offer everything but do nothing really well.

Don’t get us wrong: we love Korean food. You’ve seen us drool over it in many many videos. But sometimes we crave some diversity, something new, and Korea rarely offers anything new when it comes to food.

Creative Spaces

We were ultra inspired when we went to the Jubilee Project Conference, not so much by the conference itself, which was lovely, but by the freaking place it was being held in. We were in The Great Company. It’s a gigantic and freaking GORGEOUS space where people can be creative. It’s a reconstructed warehouse, and – holy hell – I felt like robbing the place. I don’t mean grabbing stuff from there and running: I wanted to rob the place itself. Like, this is my place now, GTFO.

It’s the studio of our dreams, really. We love the Eatyourkimchi Nasty Studio, don’t get us wrong, but it’s a bit small. It’s big by Korean standards, but compared to the Great Company, it’s puny. It had a giant kitchen, huge living room, presentation spaces, a recording studio, and just loads of room. We want something like that. We’d love to take a warehouse in Korea and build a bigger studio in it, where we can film our cooking segments, where we can have Korean bands that don’t have music videos come in and shoot a live session, where we can have other YouTubers come in and shoot videos if they need a space. The Great Company: having a place like that is our next big dream. I think it’s gonna happen. Our place, we’re discovering, is falling apart. It’s leaking all over (and monsoon season just hit, so we’re gonna be in a lot of trouble) and it’s got some other quirks to it that don’t make it ideal.

Ok, the point here isn’t to talk about our dream space and what we want to do in Korea. What I wanted to say is that we were in a few places in LA that were just gorgeous creative environments, and I don’t see that in Korea too much. The real estate is just too small and the rent is too damn high. Maybe outside of Seoul it’s doable, but in Seoul, in Hongdae especially, it’s not really common, and we were really envious of the creative spaces in LA. Like, really really.

Alright I might have wandered a bit in that last point. Sorry! We just felt really inspired after leaving LA. The food was creative, the spaces were creative, and talking with different YouTubers there made us feel creative, and meeting our app developer made us feel creative, and we just came back to Korea inspired as hell! YAAAGGGHHHH!!!!! TIME TO MAKE MOAR MOVIES!

So…*cough* that’s it for this week’s TL;DR. Let us know what you think. If you’re in Korea or LA, or if you’ve visited either, we’d love to hear your input and see how it aligns with ours :D

We’ve got a special guest appearance for next week’s TL;DR: we shot that one in LA, so make sure you check it out. Click on this pretty button below to make sure you don’t miss out!

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