Wednesday, July 4, 2012

The Best Engrish Moment Ever

Spotting and collecting awful English slogans—often just strings of related words in a grammatical relationship best described as "vague"—from clothing and apparel is one of the anglophone foreigner's favorite past times. I was guilty of it myself during my first few months, though now I mostly don't give a hoot.

Mostly.

I was pawing through shirts outside a boutique in Bundang when I came across this:

Sorry for the typical Ebay clothing shot. I didn't
feel up to modeling it.


At first blush, it's unremarkable, really. A random image with some bedazzled bits and random English text: par for the course as far as Korean fashion goes. Yes, it is indeed way ~girlier~ than anything else in my wardrobe, for those of you playing along at home. Not only that, but it is not the most flattering of fits or colors for me.

Why did I buy it, then?

Because while I was processing the English text, I realized: This is familiar. I could a hear a man's voice singing these words in my memory, and after another ten seconds to let the song play out to the chorus, I had it pinned.


Alternative, Baby
Reel Big Fish


Well, I see you up on stage and I
don't know just what you're sayin',
But you're my hero.
Whoa, oh oh.
But a guy just kicked me in the head,
a little girl just passed out dead,
I'm in between a big jock and a sweaty skinhead,
but I love you.
Whatever that means.

But I don't wanna talk to you,
'cause I know I'd just say something stupid and
I know you've got
better things to do.

Hey, little alternative girl,
so don't you wanna be my friend?
You know I'm singin' all my songs to you.
It's all right if you don't understand.



Well, maybe I shouldn't be so serious, 
Tellin' you that everything sucks, 'cause I don't wanna 
bring you down.
But it never never works out right. 
I'm gonna lose, give up the fight. I won't get what I want,
won't get anything, but I love you.
Whatever that means.

And they don't wanna talk to me 'cause they know what I'll turn out to be.
 I said I was cool,
but I can't lie to you. 




Hey, little alternative girl, don't you wanna be my friend?
You know I'm singin' all my songs to you.
It's all right if you don't understand.

And I don't wanna start again
'cause I know it'll be the same in the end.
I didn't like it the first time anyway.


Hey, little alternative girl, so don't you wanna be my friend?
You know I'm singin' all my songs to you.
It's all right if you don't understand.


If you aren't familiar with Reel Big Fish, it makes it even more hilarious to realize that this is an amped-up poppy ska song from their 1996 album Turn the Radio Off. Have some YouTube. And don't worry: despite the parental advisory warning, this song is perfectly inoffensive.


Listen to that, and then go back and look at the first picture.

You see why I had to buy it, then.


1 comment:

  1. Third-wave ska references ftw.

    ReplyDelete