Hey, Do You Know ‘Gangnam Style’?

by Isabel Bang

This photo shows a bunch of people, cartoons, companies, and food that Koreans call the “Do You Know Club.” What does this mean? Easily put, it’s like the Korean Wall of Fame. The whole “do you know” phrase was a meme between the younger generation in Korea, initially in the past to criticise the Korean press’s repetitive questions towards foreigners - “dO YoU kNoW kIMcHi!?” But as more K-things and K-people are profoundly and globally recognised, Koreans started to actually feel the pride in the country's achievements and built this ‘club’ of fame. When the actress Youn Yuh-jung won the Oscar with Minari earlier in 2021, many Koreans congratulated her for joining the Do You Know club 😂  Recently, the 2020 Tokyo Olympics archers An San and Kim Je-Deok joined the club with their amazing performance! 🥇🥇🥇

This club is not only open to those people who have a successful career. It’s open to everything Korean that is loved by people around the world. These can include Korean-made cartoon characters that once trended outside the country like the Little Penguin Pororo, Kakao friends, Line friends and the Baby Shark Family - not many people are aware that the Baby Shark song was from Korea! 🦈

Everyone knows how proud Korean people are of their food. The food category in the Do You Know club includes the instant Fire Noodles, the Korean spirits Soju, the rockmelon flavoured ice cream Melona, the COVID-lockdown-invention Dalgona Coffee, Fatcarons, and of course Kimchi. The most recent addition to the club would be the croffles (croissant + waffle) mentioned in TMI Vol. 020 and lettering cakes that were dealt in TMI Vol. 021. So clearly, the food doesn’t have to be traditional ‘Korean’ per se, but if it went viral was initiated from Korea they’re eligible to join the club.

Obviously, we are not even allowed to talk about Korean pride without our K-pop stars like BTS and Blackpink, and our world-famous athletes like Kim Yeon-Koung, Son Heung-Min and Park Ji-Sung. Parasite and director Bong Joon-Ho are definitely in the club, and the list goes on forever. From the poorest country in the world in the 1960s, the rapid development that South Korea reached now is surely a huge jump forward. For this jump to happen, I believe that all these members of the Do You Know club contributed a lot of effort. At this pace, soon this Wall of Fame would be unnecessary to keep record of - by any means, a country is always proud to have everyone and everything they have 🇰🇷❤️

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