I’m not sure if this is brilliant, scary, or tragic. The South Korean government is spending cash money to help newly moved government workers find love:
“When 26-year-old An Gi Hyue moved from Seoul to Sejong City last year as part of the South Korean government’s biggest relocation since the Korean War, it put a damper on her romantic life. Now, the state is offering help.
An joined more than 100 single public workers yesterday for a lecture by a romance counselor hired by the government on how to fall in love in their new home, Sejong, a city of 100,000 about 120 kilometers (75 miles) south of the capital Seoul, where more than 10 million people live.
‘Opportunities to meet men spontaneously have been reduced because Sejong is much smaller than Seoul,’ An said in a phone interview from Sejong yesterday. ‘Blind dates would also be called off because I now live far from Seoul.’”
It’s worth remembering that South Korea faces a pretty dramatic demographic crisis, so it’s not like the government is doing this purely out of the kindness of its heart. The country isn’t making enough babies, and there won’t be enough health-care providers and/or tax-payers to support an elderly populace. (For what it’s worth, things are even worse in Japan.)
But the image of government workers being herded into a conference room for “counseling” on how to find a life partner is kind of bizarre and touching all at the same time. And it’s also very, very Korean.