** A mystery Santa in Jeonju has donated about 81 million won since 2002.
** By using some 30,000 people, South Korea hopes to break a world record today for number of Christmas carolers.
** Boseong's tea fields are all lit up.
** Japan has animal shows of its own, including this one of a chimpanzee who gets a popcorn maker for Christmas. Yes, very 카와이.
** If you've ever taught kindergarten here and have tried to find videos to childrens' songs on Naver or Yahoo, you know that 90% of what's on there is garbage. Here's them getting "Jingle Bells" wrong.
** The "Proposal Wall" along Cheonggyecheon in Seoul has become a popular spot for proposals. More information on the official website; yes, there's an official website.
** Politician and 2007 presidential candidate Huh Kyung-young---with a self-proclaimed IQ of 430---was sentenced to 18 months in jail for being bat-shit insane.
** A piece in the Korea Times asks "Is Korea Homogenous Country?" Some good opinions there, some decidedly not good. Equally important as asking about Korea's increasingly heterogeneous future is reflecting on the degree to which Korea may or may not have been heterogeneous in the past.
Children are still taught at school that all Koreans are of the same ancestry. The Ministry of Education, Science and Technology has no immediate plans to completely erase the term ``homogeneous Korean people,'' thought it has toned down the parts emphasizing it.
``It's still a bit too early to remove the term homogenous people,'' said Min Byung-kwan, the ministry director in charge of textbooks.
The ministry says it is inevitable to maintain the term to explain the reasons why the two Koreas should be reunified. ``We will correct expressions against immigrants in textbooks, but when it comes to reunification, we need to emphasize that Korean people share the same blood,'' said Kim Yoon-ki, the ministry researcher.
** Here's a ridiculous amount of cleavage from somebody in a Christmas-themed outfit. Living in Korea makes me more aware of the over-the-top sexuality in advertising and in the media. I suppose because breast implants, bug eyes, and other mimics of Western trappings look so out of place on Korean women as to draw attention to their absurdity.
** This church in Gwangju is perhaps a little confused, as Jesus wasn't crucified on Christmas. A different angle.
** As in Korea, there's talk in Japan about having more English-only English classes. Guess how that's going.
** Figure skater Kim Yuna was voted the Korea Times' person of the year. Really? Nothing else happened? Gusts of Popular Feeling has more on how local media is manipulating the competition between Kim and Japan's Asada Mao into a nationalistic rivalry.
** In Japan people have come to believe that Kentucky Fried Chicken is the traditional Western Christmas dinner, and people will wait in line for hours for it on Christmas Day.
** Merry Christmas from Haenam county's 땅끝, or "Land's End," the southernmost point on peninsular South Korea.
** Don't miss the other Christmas stuff I've posted this year, including some really neat photos from a Seoul aquarium and a piece on the "uniqueness" of Korean Christmas. Reader Paul has written a rebuttal to it in the comments section.