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What's so awesome about Korean stuff?

I'm interested in Korean pop culture: K-pop, K-drama, K-film. I've seen previous questions about specific recommendations if music and movies. I am checking those out. There is so much material, I'm trying to get a broader perspective. [more inside]
posted by gimletbiggles on Mar 12, 2013 - 10 answers

Unusual things people do to stay/get healthy?

I'm going into the health field and curious about cultural/ethnic health practices that are off the beaten path. For example, can anyone tell me the "what", "how", and "why" of cupping and coining? What other cultural/religious/traditional practices can you share? [more inside]
posted by mschief on Mar 10, 2013 - 33 answers

Where can I learn about man's interaction with new ingredients?

What was Italian food like before the tomato? When coffee houses started popping up in Europe what establishments lost business as a result? Did Marco Polo really bring noodles to Europe from China? Where can I find the answer to all these questions and more? [more inside]
posted by any portmanteau in a storm on Mar 6, 2013 - 29 answers

Compromise: draw a face on those very nice abs?

I'm a boy who wants to make out with other boys. Problem is, I'm bothered by the culture of some of the more popular online options (e.g. Grindr). What are my options? [more inside]
posted by Conspire on Mar 5, 2013 - 12 answers

Lose a good friend or try to fix it?

Is a man who pretends to be friends with a woman when he is actually interested in more than friendship doing something shady? Should said woman (myself) drop him as a friend or give him a chance to adjust? He’s a good friend and generally a positive, interesting and charming friend to have (smart, insightful, witty, capable of deep conversation, trustworthy with secrets, understanding…). I’m simply not interested in dating him (for many reasons, the most glaring of which is that he’s sexist in subtle ways that I couldn’t tolerate in a partner), but I value and love his friendship and conversation. I do not want to date him, ever. I don’t know if I should salvage our friendship or let it go, for his sake and mine...I've included the details below but I think this summary captures what I am trying to intellectually and emotionally figure out. [more inside]
posted by grassbottles on Feb 28, 2013 - 54 answers

Delicatessen for Dilettantes & Greenhorn Cuisine

Please recommend outstanding recipe books and resources for clueless cooks! [more inside]
posted by byanyothername on Feb 26, 2013 - 11 answers

Cultural shifts in Oakland

Oakland MeFites: What are the most interesting cultural manifestations of Oakland's two-decade-long demographic shift? [more inside]
posted by grrarrgh00 on Feb 21, 2013 - 6 answers

I'm traveling to India (New Delhi), for business in a week. Need advice!

It's my first time out of the USA, and I don't know what to pack! [more inside]
posted by PetiePal on Feb 11, 2013 - 21 answers

Why are baby animals cuter than baby humans?

Why do kittens, bunnies, puppies, and their ilk seem so much cuter than human babies? This is something I've always wondered, and I am surprised that it doesn't seem to have been asked here. I've seen some idle speculations about the reasons in various places around the Web, but nothing resembling evidence. Is there any actual research related to this topic? Or is the question based on flawed assumptions somehow? [more inside]
posted by fermion on Feb 7, 2013 - 46 answers

What's the most popular music among 5 year old (Serbo-Croatian) girls?

I want to fill an old i-pod mini with pop music for a 5 year old girl. What kind of music do kids this age like? If the answer is Justin Bieber I'm okay with that. [more inside]
posted by vincele on Feb 7, 2013 - 19 answers

Your favourite clever pop culture sites/podcasts/lectures

I'm at home ill at the moment, watching lots of films and reading a lot (this week I've watched 14 films and read 2 books). I'd like to find sites (or podcasts/lectures/etc) that intelligently examine media and/or popular culture. I regularly read articles on Popmatters and sometimes the A.V. Club (but not so much). What are your favourite film/media crit resources? Podcasts? Lectures? Thank you in advance for any help!
posted by everydayanewday on Jan 29, 2013 - 13 answers

How can I find out more about what Polish people eat?

Can you think of any good sources of information on Polish daily eating habits, dietary trends, frequently used ingredients and dishes etc.? Bonus question: how much overlap is there with other Eastern European countries? [more inside]
posted by sively on Jan 22, 2013 - 6 answers

Joymany

My friends went to Germany on a whim and now they are cold and miserable until their flight back in early February. I don't want them to give up hope. What are some truly awesome things that they can do in Berlin and the surrounding areas in the coming weeks? [more inside]
posted by cloeburner on Jan 18, 2013 - 38 answers

Everyday Life Everywhere?

What are some good sources - blogs or books - for learning what everyday life is like in different parts of the world? [more inside]
posted by kristi on Jan 15, 2013 - 5 answers

Cultural anthropology: "ur trait" a term for universl beliefs/practices?

Some decades ago I heard the term "Ur trait" (can't be sure of the spelling) in relation to a collection of cultural beliefs or possibly culturally driven practices that are universally distributed in humans around the globe, and which are believed to reach back to the early development of humans, so that they might represent bits of a core of human culture. I'm unsure enough of the concept that I don't want to make up examples which might lead respondents on a wrong path. Googling "ur trait" didn't yield any useful answers. The concept sounds similar, but is not identical to Jung's idea of a collective unconscious, which seems to be related a little more to psychology than cultural anthropology. I'm primarily interested in whether the phrase "ur trait" was ever in use, and secondarily in the concept it represents if not what I've described above.
posted by paphun123 on Jan 10, 2013 - 12 answers

Angelino Assistance Needed!

Recommend me some stuff to do in Los Angeles in January! [more inside]
posted by vibrotronica on Jan 6, 2013 - 19 answers

The "Drag List" for my kids

I dragged my kids (ages 13, 11, 9) to see Les Miserables. They loved it. What other works should Mean Dad "drag" them to enjoy so that they become well-rounded adults with perspective and taste when it comes to media choices? [more inside]
posted by cross_impact on Dec 27, 2012 - 37 answers

Birmingham on Christmas Day: options?

Birmingham, England. Christmas Day. Is *anything* open at all? [more inside]
posted by Wordshore on Dec 23, 2012 - 7 answers

History of Sociology of Religion; Why Bellah Doesn't (Much) Cite Eliade

Why does Mircea Eliade get short shrift in Robert N. Bellah's Religion in Human Evolution? [more inside]
posted by ibmcginty on Dec 18, 2012 - 3 answers

Children and foreign languages/cultures - inform me!

If a child is immersed in a particular language on a medium-term basis (say, a year of preschool, or maybe two or three), and becomes fluent in it, but then the exposure is taken away, how much does this language stick? Can the child still understand the basics of the language a decade later? Or does it make the language easier to relearn later in life? ALSO: What does early exposure to a foreign culture do for a child, if anything? Is cultural uprooting and rerooting of this nature disorienting and/or destructive for a child? [more inside]
posted by UniversityNomad on Dec 11, 2012 - 31 answers

Icebergs in oil or bone or what-have-you

What is the earliest depiction (not description) of an iceberg in Western Art? [more inside]
posted by Chrischris on Dec 2, 2012 - 5 answers

Gene W. Banks

What interesting writing has been done on the overlaps between Gene Wolfes "Book of the new sun and Iain M. Banks Culture novels? [more inside]
posted by monocultured on Dec 2, 2012 - 5 answers

How can I get along in a foreign country I don't like?

I have moved to a foreign country and am looking for suggestions as to how to get along in the best way possible until I can return to the US. I am a single woman with a professional background. I came to this country to reconnect with my ancestral roots. I have found the culture and behavior really appalling and irritating on a profound level as well as being sexist at a very deep level. [more inside]
posted by malach_sadriel on Dec 2, 2012 - 27 answers

Objects you'd find in a 1999 office?

Think of an office or cubicle in the United States around 1999, particularly in tech/IT companies. What kinds of objects would you see there which are less common now? [more inside]
posted by ErikH2000 on Dec 1, 2012 - 92 answers

which bouquet to bring?

Asking for a friend. A coworkers wife has been diagnosed stage IV brain cancer. They are East Indian. We would like to bring flowers to their home. Does anyone know if certain flowers have special meaning culturally and / or are there flowers to avoid? Thank you.
posted by jennstra on Nov 28, 2012 - 6 answers

Norms in South Korean culture

Korean culture filter: Are you familiar with Korean culture from 30 years ago? Can you tell me if these experiences were normal in terms of the social culture at that time? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Nov 27, 2012 - 8 answers

Remind me

Looking to find either the author's name or his article. [more inside]
posted by Postroad on Nov 12, 2012 - 3 answers

Are there any magazines for anglophiles and francophiles? Google not helpful.

Are there any magazines for anglophiles and francophiles? Google not helpful. [more inside]
posted by miltoncat on Nov 11, 2012 - 8 answers

Talking Shit About a Pretty Sunset

Why has there been no new youth subculture since 1998? 1960s had hippies, '70s had disco and punk, '80s had hip hop and goth, '90s had grunge. And yet kids and twenty-somthings have been wearing trucker caps and ironic sunglasses for 15 years now. What happened?
posted by four panels on Nov 10, 2012 - 45 answers

How do I deal with my short-tempered husband?

How do I deal with my short-tempered husband? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Oct 28, 2012 - 22 answers

Cultural Center

Where's the scene? [more inside]
posted by skwint on Oct 26, 2012 - 24 answers

Seeking future shock.

Where can I find summaries of historical developments, technological breakthroughs, political and social changes etc. in a similar style as the Afterword in Charles Stross's anthology Toast (free download here)? I am interested in stuff that has happened in the last 30 or 40 years.
posted by fullerenedream on Oct 22, 2012 - 0 answers

Hello Austin, Where are my people?

Hello Austin, Where are my people? I recently moved to Austin, TX from Fargo, ND (of all places). I've quickly discovered that this place is flooded with awesomeness, to a point of being mildly overwhelming. Thus, I am asking for help with finding things and people with similar tastes. I am, a maker crafts person type, I mostly sew and knit but I have a background in sculpture and some interest in learning electronics. I am also a cyclist, who loves chill coffee houses and a sense of community. I'm looking for: 1. a place to consign/wholesale goods I make, mainly plush toy monsters, before the holiday season. also craft fairs 2. a couch, or a place to find a couch (secondhand); thrift stores dont seem to have much in the way of furniture. 3. a good, non-chain, hardware/surplus store. 4. a good fabric store 5. a job 6. fellow makers
posted by misformiche on Oct 21, 2012 - 11 answers

ADHD acceptance; nobody's problem but my own?

I've just been diagnosed with ADHD, and have started an initial stimulant-based management plan. I'm in my mid-forties, and work in a very traditional industry and come from a not-very-accepting Old World culture. How open do I need to be with colleagues and friends that I'm doing this? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Oct 13, 2012 - 11 answers

Hatless cultures

Are there any ethnic groups that don't wear hats?
posted by dontjumplarry on Oct 6, 2012 - 9 answers

Do egalitarian heterosexual marriages exist?

Do egalitarian heterosexual marriages exist as a cultural phenomenon? [more inside]
posted by Mai2k3 on Sep 26, 2012 - 57 answers

I'd totally run for International Ms Velvet. Or International Ms Fuzzy Fabric Of Any Sort.

How did leather, latex, and vinyl get to be the most popular and celebrated materials in the kink/BDSM world - as opposed to say velvet, silk, organza, lace, muslin? [more inside]
posted by divabat on Sep 25, 2012 - 24 answers

What is this crazy little thing called Twitter?

I have tried to figure out Twitter on my own for over a year. I still don't get it. I googled articles. I emailed people and asked questions. I paid attention when it came up in conversation in online forums. I finally screwed up my courage and set up an account, even though I didn't know how to use it. At some point, I asked someone I met in person about it. But I am still doing it Rong. So Rong in fact that I just stopped bothering to try. [more inside]
posted by Michele in California on Sep 21, 2012 - 56 answers

There is no Jay Smooth video about this one.

I have never used "Jew" as a verb. I no longer "welsh" on debts, and I haven't used "gyp" since I was educated on the racism behind that term. Do I also need to stop using terms like "Mexican standoff", "Chinese firedrill", and "kabuki dance" if I intentionally don't want to create offense to a reasonable person in another cultural group? I grew up in very homogeneous territory and so I'm still learning. Please school me. I love words, I love colorful language and descriptors, but I don't want to be an ass. Words matter.
posted by availablelight on Sep 17, 2012 - 58 answers

Significant stories in Other Cultures

Are there Asian, African, or Spanish speaking equivalents to the Arthurian legends? [more inside]
posted by gt2 on Sep 16, 2012 - 30 answers

How do I tell my parents that I'm not having sex?

I have no idea how to talk to normal people about my not-normal relationship, particularly when it comes to parents. At what point does it become strange? [more inside]
posted by platypus of the universe on Sep 14, 2012 - 34 answers

Death is away.

Hypothetical (I'm writing a story): is it okay/normal for someone to visit a cemetery and mourn, even if their loved-one wasn't buried there? [more inside]
posted by Trexsock on Sep 12, 2012 - 44 answers

80s Chinese Secret, eh?

Help me put together a list of 1980s Hollywood films that indulge in faux Asian magic and mysticism. I'm thinking along the lines of Gremlins, Big Trouble in Little China, Little Shop of Horrors, and The Golden Child. Bonus points if the plot kicks off with a wise old shopkeeper selling weird things.
posted by roger ackroyd on Sep 7, 2012 - 31 answers

Help me find a recent article/blog about people behaving like corporations?

I read (and failed to bookmark) an article or blog post a week or two ago that drew parallels between the idea of "corporate personhood" and the "quantify everything, optimize your own happiness" ethos shared by many young people today. Basically the gist of it was that many people were emulating corporate "persons" rather than real people as role models. Can you help me find it?
posted by idontlikewords on Aug 24, 2012 - 5 answers

Third world woman needs consciousness raised

Enlighten me on current state of the art thinking, discourse and vocabulary around gender politics please. Terminally unique details inside. [more inside]
posted by infini on Aug 22, 2012 - 31 answers

How to build my own artificial jellyfish?

I've been obsessing about the artificial jellyfish lately and I want to know how difficult it would be to make one myself. [more inside]
posted by sunnichka on Aug 15, 2012 - 2 answers

What's it like to live in Shanghai from a native's perspective?

Recommendations for Chinese literature that presents average Chinese citizens in context of a modern Chinese urban setting [more inside]
posted by TheOtherSide on Aug 12, 2012 - 4 answers

She's full of seeeeeecrets

I've recently been watching Twin Peaks again, and I've been wondering... to people who actually watched it air in its original run, what was it like seeing something like this on TV? Did you have watching parties that I've heard so much about? Was the reveal of the killer and the twists and turns along the way surprising? Did you watch until the end of the second season, and were you disappointed when it got the plug pulled on it? [more inside]
posted by codacorolla on Aug 3, 2012 - 66 answers

The olympics are way less fun now.

Have olympic spoilers always been this bad? I'm so so very annoyed to already know the outcome of tonights gymnastics, just like I've inadvertantly known the outcome of almost every event I am interested in so far in these games. Even though I try to avoid the obvious spoiler media outlets, I can't ignore everything; esp not elevator tv's, the radio, or overheard coversations at the cubicle farm. Are the days of sitting on the edge of my seat during the evening broadcast, jumping for joy at an unexpected gold over? Or has it always been this way and I'm just catching up now?
posted by shimmer on Jul 31, 2012 - 30 answers

frustration and connection in the city?

How have you negotiated being frustrated with the culture and experience of young-white-people-in-the-city without alienating friends or becoming a hypocrite/cynic/other mopey monster variant? [more inside]
posted by elephantsvanish on Jul 28, 2012 - 28 answers

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