Jeffrey LewisEnd of the World: Still Hot

Apparently, Kim Jong Il and Marvin Gaye have a little something in common:

Motel Bookings, Condom Sales Surge Post Nuke Test

Chosun Ilbo, October 26, 2006

As tends to be the case in disasters and crises, sales of condoms and reservations at motels surged in the wake of North Korea’s nuclear test on Oct. 9. One online hotel reservations site reports that everything is completely booked up through the end of the month in what it calls an “exceptional” flood of guests. If there is apathy about security among Koreans, there is also a silent terror seeking release in sex.

The English version of the story ran with a rather abstract pair of images, a human hand holding a condom and a finger with a string tied in a bow. (Don’t forget your tryst at the love motel!)

Oh, but the Korean version … that contained the glorious image to your right, which AP called “a full-color graphic of a condom-shrouded missile bearing a North Korean flag.”

Edward Tufte would probably consider this a prime example of chartjunk, but I imagine even ET could summon a resevoir tip’s worth of forgiveness for this tacky masterpiece.



  1. Mingi (History)

    I’d hate to be the guy on bed sheet duty during those “busy weeks.”

  2. Thomas Nephew (History)

    Makes me kind of uncomfortable with your banner image, too.

  3. Alex (History)

    Though you have to admit — male genitals are more aerodynamic than female genitals. I’m just sayin’.

  4. JJ (History)

    I wonder how many Norks are wooing their paramours with the Korean version of “Let’s Do it For Our Country…”

  5. yale

    After thinking that my next door neighbor is wacked-out and has this:

    I might need a viagra to get things in motion.