Monday, 28 October 2013

At A Corner In Itaewon: A B-Boy Battle And Free Sketching!

I have always said that the most relaxing weekends are not spent at home; they're bed. Ha-ha-ha!

But this weekend, I didn't want to relax at home. I wanted to get some autumn sun on my face and some autumn fun on the streets. And I didn't have to walk that far to find it.

Right at the entrance of Itaewon, next to the Noksapyeong Station, I joined a crowd gathered at the Itaewon Square watching a b-boy battle. This year, I have already watched two b-boy events: one was a free style competition at the KTO headquarters, and the other was the 2013 World Bboy Masters Championships at the Olympic Park. And this third one is just right in my neighborhood.

That autumn afternoon, as I sat there among the Itaewon crowd consisting of locals, expats and a few international tourists, these Korean b-boys reminded me again that they are a league above those dancing k-pop boy bands. These b-boys got rhythm and moves, which those manufactured celebrities try to copy all the time. Their moves always amaze me as some of them seemed to defy the laws of physics, as well as physicality.

Other than the battles, everyone was treated to a guest performance of Gorilla Crew, a popular Korean b-boy crew. I remember I saw them perform early this year at the K-Performance Supporters' welcome dinner and k-pop concert in Gangnam. 

I guess the battles would have been fiercer if the stage was a little bit wider. There just wasn't enough space up there. I would suggest to the organizers of the Itaewon Weekend Festival to lengthen it by a couple meters so the b-boys wouldn't hit the judges sitting on the stage while they spin, twirl, back-flip, handstand, pop and lock.

After watching those bboy competitions early this year, I recognize a few bboys in the competition, who may not be as popular at the Jinjo Crew and Morning of Owl, former champions of the World B-boy Masters Championships. But just the same, these guys are good at what they do. You can even throw in b-girls as there were a couple on the stage competing that afternoon.

And while the battles were going on, a couple of lady artists were at the Itaewon Square giving free sketching to everyone. They would draw your face on a t-shirt as you spend a few minutes sitting down before them. I think everyone in the area passing by got interested in what they could do as there was a long line that afternoon. I wonder if they ran out of t-shirts.

I was glad I was able to separate myself from my comfortable bed this weekend. Ha-ha-ha! Although I already had fun playing tennis in the morning, watching the b-boy battles and having myself sketched were just a continuation of fun I was looking for.

The girls doing the sketching told me that their 'event' will continue until November 2, next Saturday. I wonder if I show up there wearing a halloween costume, they would still sketch me? Ha-ha-ha!

With the autumn temperatures getting colder as each week passes, it's getting more difficult for me to get out of my bed, or just even get out of my room. I just feel lazy heading out into the chilly outdoors, although I have a feeling that I'm not the only feeling that way these days, and I will need more than just b-boy battles and free sketching to draw me out of my house. Ha-ha-ha!

But I guess I should think like these b-boys and b-girls who came to Itaewon to compete and had fun while doing it. They simply just wanted to enjoy their weekends as well! So, next time I feel like I am super-glued into my bed, I will always try to remember that somewhere out there, beneath the cool autumn sun, someone's having fun! And I should do, too!
                           (The b-boy battle winners!)