K-Advent Calendar Day 7 – Squid
When growing up on the terraces back home the selection of food available to the average fan was not the most elaborate of buffets and generally ranged from a ridiculously boiling hot cup of Bovril to a rather crusty looking, and all too often crusty tasting, pie. Things have come on quite a bit from those days though and now everything from pizza to steak pies to paninis are available on matchday which brings us neatly to day 7 – dried squid! Whether you are at Tancheon, The Big Bird or even down in the K3 that wonderful delicacy is there for all. It resembles something that was rejected from I’m a Celebrity as being “too much” and that’s before you get close enough to enjoy it’s unique aroma. It’s very much the staple diet among sporting fans of all ages in Korea so if you were unable to procure some outside the stadium don’t worry as the smell is such that you will feel you have some sitting on your lap.
As football snacks go it’s fair to say it’s not number one on the 48 Shades roll of honours although that sausage on a stick thing at Sangnam does come a close second. You do tend to get the impression that catering is not really high on the K-League’s list of priorities (although one could argue that noting seems to be a priority to them) and God forbid Gordon Ramsay continues the pretence that he was once a footballer and ever descends on Korea as I’m not sure how popular ‘Ramsay’s K-League Nightmares’ would be.
Sea-dwelling creatures are not altogether uncommon at footballing events, we have the famous Paul the Octopus who rose to fame by predicting the winner in Germany’s World Cup matches at WC2010. Paul famously predicted Germany’s thrashing of England as well as their play-off win over Uruguay. He did so by opening a box decked in the flag of the nation he thought would win and eating it’s contents. Not too dissimilar to watching an ajussi devouring a box of friend chicken at HT at the World Cup Stadium. After his meteoric rise to fame Paul lived out the rest of his happy days snacking on mussels and enjoying the company of a couple of starfish.