Whether loathed or loved, most everyone the world over knows Saint Valentine's Day. Then there's White Day a month later in which men who received chocolate on February 14th return the favor. Fewer people know of Sweetest Day, a holiday concocted by candy makers in the US for mid-October, where loved ones purchase candy and small gifts for one another. But have you ever heard of Black Day?
Black Day is a uniquely Korean holiday in response to the cloying sweetness of Valentine's Day and White Day. In Korea, the tradition of obligatory chocolate has sprung up for both these days. Women give chocolate not just to husbands or boyfriends, but to male coworkers, friends, and love interests on Valentine's Day. Men reciprocate on White Day. The amount of chocolate one receives tends to measure his/her popularity, which can be a real ouch to the ego.
Black Day, which falls on April 14th, offers the opportunity for the loveless to commiserate together. People who didn't receive any chocolate or gifts on either Valentine's Day or White Day advertise their single status with black clothes -- more than one single guy and girl have started seeing one another after Black Day. What's more, celebrants eat a noodle dish with black bean sauce, drink alcohol, and gripe about romance and love. There are no presents to buy, no unfulfilled expectations, and no baring of the soul to a secret admirer. Perhaps the best part of the holiday comes down to its obscurity, though. It has yet to be packaged and marketed and sold to the consumer like its contrary counterparts in February and March.
Preview some of the lesson material:
Brainstorm: Brainstorm with a partner(s) words and ideas associated with "Valentine's Day" for 1 minute, then brainstorm words and ideas associated with "White Day" for 1 minute. Spend another 5 minutes or less discussing the words and ideas together.
Fill in the Blanks: Fill in the blank with the correct word.
- Whether ( ) or loved, most everyone the world over knows Saint Valentine's Day.
- Fewer people know of Sweetest Day, a holiday ( ) by candy makers in the US for mid-October.
- Black Day is a holiday in response to the ( ) sweetness of Valentine's Day and White Day.
- In Korea, the tradition of ( ) chocolate has sprung up for both these days.
- Men ( ) with gifts and chocolate on White Day.
- The amount of chocolate you get measures your popularity, which can be a real ouch to the ( ).
- Black Day, which falls on April 14th, offers the opportunity for the loveless to ( ) together.
- Celebrants eat a noodle dish with black bean sauce, drink alcohol, and ( ) about romance.
- Perhaps the best part of the holiday comes down to its ( ), though.
- It has yet to be marketed and sold to the consumer like its ( ) counterparts.
post-Comprehension: Talk about the following questions in pairs/groups. Remember to support your answers!
- How do you feel about Black Day? Please explain.
- Will Black Day spread around the world and become a commercial holiday? Why/not?
- Does your country have any unique holidays? Please explain.
- What is a holiday, apart from possibly a day off from school or work?
- If you could create a new holiday, what would it celebrate? Please explain.
Google Search: Type "Black Day" into Google. Look at the websites, and/or read additional articles on this topic. Discuss or write an essay about your findings.