North Korea made news this week with its alleged testing of a hydrogen bomb. Many have their doubts regarding the veracity of this claim but I’m not surprised. After all, their “nuclear arsenal is mounted on launch pads, aimed at the windpipe of our enemies.” Well then. That bombastic, bizarre rhetoric gets me every time. Google ‘crazy North Korea quotes’ and giggle at the fusion of outlandish propaganda and mastery of language.
Kim Jong Un
executes family members that do not share his vision surrounds himself with yes men, none of whom advise him to fire his hairstylist. And why should they? Every Supreme Leader needs an ambition cut. Read these strange yet interesting facts about the reclusive leader. Who knew he loved Swiss cheese?
Hearing about North Korea inevitably transports me back to my junior high Geography Fair. Seventh grade girls devoted a significant portion of their second semester researching their randomly assigned country. I pored over encyclopedias [once upon a time those were hardcover books] and explored internet articles in the golden age of AOL. My typed report was dozens of pages long and included meticulously drawn graphs. Of course I
earned with my blood, sweat, and tears received an A but you already knew that.
There was also a visual presentation in addition to the written component. All students decorated a board [those three panel types used for science fairs] with pictures and information about their country and displayed them in the gym. Dressing up was encouraged but not required. In true Sloane fashion I went above and beyond, heading to Mr. Lincoln’s Costume Shoppe to rent a traditional Asian getup. I looked like I stepped off a movie set. Draped in a red and yellow kimono looking gown the pièce de résistance wasn’t on my body…but the giant blue contraption secured to my head. Calling it a ‘hat’ doesn’t even come close. It weighed half as much as I did and gave me neck cramps for a fortnight.
Spare me the lecture on political correctness and cultural insensitivity. Nobody had to know my authentic garb wasn’t native to North Korea. I rocked my look and won the unofficial costume contest. People talked about that headdress for years.
With infinite love, gratitude, and respect,