A Snapshot of Hospitality’s Underworld

Colin Moore, a reporter for Korean citizen-journalism news outlet OhmyNews! writes a bluntly honest and oddly beautiful article about his experience with “booking,” a distinct (and costly) brand of Korean night life:

… In a booking club though, customer service ranks somewhere between considerate and commercial swine, begging the pardons of our planet’s pork.

Up to a block before you find one, you’ll see the first signs. The club will have its feelers out. This means small groups in black jackets and earpieces on the hunt for fresh meat, the meat being any girl who falls within the hotter fringes of normal distribution.

But Seoul is a good looking town. Standard distribution is high. I can only imagine what a 10 year old asks their parent.

“Why is that man pulling her? Does he love her?”

“No honey, he’s working.”

It can be frustrating to watch these Mission Impossible extras in action, even when some of the girls protest with a smile, flattered to be chosen. [Read full]

Though I never ventured into a booking club myself, reading this piece makes me yearn for those dusk ’til dawn bouts of drinking with friends in the mad neon frenzy of Seoul. Even those unfamiliar with Korea should have a read, as Moore breaks down the different types of nighttime party joints and weaves an almost surreal narrative from his night out on the town.

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