Progress is a funny thing. Lots of times I'm bitching and moaning that progress isn't fast enough. Patience has never been my strong suit and I think that, in topics that are unjust and un-American, I have even less patience. Progress still exists. I was listening to The Daily Show on Comedy Central Radio on the way to work yesterday and they were talking about the end of Pride Month. The topic was the overwhelming public support of same sex marriages now. The speaker was commenting on how that happened. Yes, the two Will & Grace runs definitely helped normalize homosexuality, but the speaker was spot on when she was talking about the protests, the marches, the lawsuits, and all the efforts in the 70s and 80s to finally get to the point where Americans see same sex marriage as not really a big deal.
This does not mean that the struggle for equality is over for the LGBTQIA (I'm missing some letters here because I don't have the DSM Volumes consistently updated on my computer) community. There will always be improvements on how society as a whole can provide true equality to this group. However, it does have to feel very satisfying to see that many issues that were controversial decades ago are now mainstream. When you can see substantial progress, it's a wonderful thing. Which brings me to why I'm moving to the frozen food section.
A typical American Saturday morning ritual is to go to the grocery store. We just moved, so it was time to go to the nearest neighbourhood grocery store. As I am an atypical person, I don't spend a lot of time grocery shopping. So going to the store is kind of a rare treat for me, and I enjoy meandering up and down the aisles to see what new products are out. I go so infrequently that there are always revelations and surprises. It's like I'm a North Korean defector visiting the grocery store for the first time. Quadruple stuffed Oreos? Isn't one layer of stuffing enough? Not for Americans! Super Ultra Max Motrin? Shouldn't that be called "Go to the Fucking Emergency Room, Idiot?" What is Gluten Free Mr. Clean Bathroom Tile Cleaner? Broccomelon is a thing now?!?!? Although the Cranberry Raisin hot dogs sound kinda disgusting.
Two hours later we're rounding the cart into the frozen food section. And BOOM! Suddenly we see Korean inspired everything. There's Korean BBQ chicken bowls. Korean Pork tamales. I briefly felt motivated to jump in and face the door so that other shoppers could select an actual Korean as well. Almost every single section of the aisle has a package that has the word Korean on it. I need to remind you that I just moved to Buttlick, TX. Ethnic Korean population: now currently 1. Korean speaking population: still 0 (it's a really hard language to learn!). We aren't exactly in a major metropolitan area where diversity is a big thing. There are 50 different kinds of sausages in this store. There are brisket options that range from a doleful looking cow about to be tickled to death all the way to brisket scented candles. The only thing I am expecting in this grocery store to be related to Korea are the Hugging Kim Jong Un-Donald Trump figurines next to all the Make America Great Again merchandise.
My wife jokingly told me that being ahead of the trendiness is the main reason why she married me. Korean cuisine is cool and popular. I saw loads of different varieties of Special-K cereal, how cool is that? K-Pop is starting to appear on US radio stations. K-Dramas are becoming more and more popular on Netflix. This is a very pleasant development. It's so encouraging that I think I will change my name to K-Derek and you are now reading a K-Blog. Whatever it takes to get more Twitter followers. I'm all K-about it. For decades I've been whining that Koreans don't exist. Well, progress is here! And hopefully those of you that are trying Korean inspired food for the first time will realize that it's really delicious! Diversity and multiethnic experiences can be very good thing!
So hats off to you, America! Thanks for making this morning's grocery trip the best trip that I have had in a while! I'm still not going to buy the Brookshire's/Super 1 kimchi, though. There should never be brisket in kimchi. Save that for the Texas Style Cheerios.
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