Culture Clash Wedding: Korean Customs

   Hey guys, sorry I’ve not posted in a bit, but the wedding planning appointments have been piling up on me like yuppies at a Baskin Robbins free scoop night. And my Alaskan adventurer bridesmaid is in town, so I’m trying to make time to hang before she leaves me to go puke on the tundras and sleep with eskimos and shit.

(Yeah, you thought I was kidding. Look at all these freeloading-ass fools lining up for their complementary frosty treats. You wanna be like these people. You want free foods. You’re gonna crash my wedding for the free foods.)

   So, without futher ado, the conclusion to my epic 3-part series about my random-ass, culturally-confused wedding:

Korean Customs:

Geese: The groom is supposed to ride a white pony to the bride’s home & present her family with a pair of white geese. Geese, ducks, and waterfowl represent marriage in Korea, b/c them shits mate for life. AAAAWW! My groom has no pony. We rode in his white car to the jewelry store, though… Cranes are also a theme in Korean weddings, which is why I included a pic. Basically, all waterfowl are cool in Korean weddings.


(You don’t want a picture of this. And I don’t want to give you one.)

Red Dates: The parents of the couple are supposed to throw red dates at the bride, which she will try to catch in the apron of her dress. However many she catches is the number of children she will have. Well, I don’t want a lapful of symbolic babies and again- don’t throw shit at me- so this is a no. But we will have a bowl of red dates on the dessert table b/c dates are delicious.


Piggyback Ride: This is done after the ceremony. The groom carries his bride around on his back to show how he will support her in the future. While I believe in egalitarian relationships, and generally think that both parties in a relationship support each other, I’m not about to hoist a full-grown man on my back and parade him around. Mr. Panda loves this custom and insists we do it. I think it’s cute. So it’s a Yes.


Baby Bird: I’ve seen this thing online where the bride holds a date or something in her teeth and the groom eats it from her mouth like a baby bird or something. It’s a sort of1/2 kiss, 1/2 feeding thing, and it’s really more like the spaghetti scene in Lady and the Tramp than a nourishing of bird spawn thing, but that’s only if you wanna be a spoilsport about it. I don’t think I’ll be doing this. Unless I get to make those charming retching noises the mama birds make while they feed their young.


Noodles: The couple eats noodles at the reception to symbolize long life. Hell yeah! I love me some Japchae. For serious, we are going to have lots of Korean food at the wedding. Mr. Panda is so stoked. I’d like to have the photographer document my family’s faces when they try kimchi for the 1st time.

 Update- In perhaps an attempt to thwart me of my Exotic Foods Machismo, and spare the Whities of trying something different, my wedding coordinator has commissioned a non-Korean caterer to do my wedding. There is no assorted kimchi on my wedding menu. SHUH! Denied! No pickled spicy cabbage, no pickled bean sprouts, no fish cake, no salty and sweet teeny silver minnow things, no fried dumplings with eggplant. Mr. Panda’s eyes got as big around as teacups when he saw the sample menu. “No dumplings? No kimchi?” He about cried, and I am not having that. So, stay tuned for the saga that’s about to unfold: Wherein this here bride attempts to cook the food to cater her own wedding. This is the stuff that nightmares are made of, people (brine pickling solution and Korean chilis, mind).

Toast: The couple do a shot of Korean sake. I think I can handle that. I’d like to do the sake toast and the champagne toasts back-to-back just to see if anyone falls over immediately after. It’s like cow tipping, only a lot more satisfying.


Wedding Ducks: Again with the feathered friends. A pair of wooden wedding ducks are given to the couple to place inside their home. When the couple is getting along, the ducks are to be faced bill-to-bill. When they are at odds, the ducks are to face away. I think these are really cool. I just love passive-aggression. In fact, the only thing I love more than regular passive-aggression is passive-aggression aided by figurines. Like the family handpuppets in What About Bob. Classic.


  That’s all the major ones I know about, please let me know if there are any I missed. Also, if I screwed these up really really bad, please be so kind as to inform me. I really don’t want to pollute the internet with false information. My intention is only to entertain, so take me with a grain of salt the size of an overlarge cat. Like, a really fucking fat obese cat. Like, a cat that needs gastric bypass and kind of only gurles when it meows. Yeah. Cuz I’m not Korean. My fiance is, but living in America for so long kind of puts a damper on really being well-versed in his home culture.

 Well, that’s pretty much it. If anyone can think of other traditions to address, leave them in the comments!


7 responses to “Culture Clash Wedding: Korean Customs

  1. The wedding ducks are cute. And the passive-aggressive aspect could be used in adorable, apologetic way to make up – after a fight, when the ducks are facing away from each other, you can turn them towards each other without a word to say that all is forgiven.

  2. Gawd, I love Korean food. Shame about the caterer, but you can totally cook it yourself. My friend does it now and then (even though she doesn’t cook anything else) and it turns out delicious. Good luck!

  3. a.clever.otter

    Y’all should create a new custom and eat the same noodle, lady and the tramp style.

  4. PaisleyPajamas

    A sake toast at a Japanese wedding I went to was done from these adorable little wooden boxes. Everyone got to keep their box/sake cup. It was interesting to spot one at someone’s house holding paperclips or something, and exclaiming, ‘Awww, from Elizabeth’s wedding, right?’ Mine, foreshadowing my fears of commitment, was destroyed in a bookcase collapse, but that’s a story for another time.

    I highly recommend these little souvenirs for your guests if it’s Korean chic. It sort of keeps you in the hearts and minds of all that attend.

  5. Good you have given all the events of marriage in detail ,giving the newcomers a little bit idea of it.


  6. how is this possible that your wedding coordinator has booked you a boring, bland caterer?? does he/she not know how fucking delish the asian cuisines are? girl, i will help you shop the asian market for fish cake, bean curd, cuttlefish, kimchi, etc. mahself if i have to.

  7. Skinny Bone Jones

    Seriously, somewhere in, um, our network must exist a magical Korean caterer who would happily come out to cook you some kimchi and whatnot.

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