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Dear Korea #122 - Never Stop Cheering


Yeah…This week’s strip probably isn’t exactly funny or all that significant, but what can I say? I’ve been watching too much World Cup 2014 to properly function as a human being during normal people hours.

Speaking of work, the situation depicted in this week’s strip is something my friends from all over the country witnessed when South Korea was playing against Russia. I don’t think there was a single professional setting that didn’t have the game playing that day. The situation probably would  have been the same when South Korea played against Algeria (which was an amazing game) if it hadn’t been on at such an odd hour. I guess it’s kind of a good thing that I don’t sleep normal hours to begin with.

Oh well, the sun’s out. Time for a nap. See you next week!

Dear Korea #121

This has been my life ever since World Cup 2014 started. Coincidentally enough, I passed out just long enough to miss the United States vs Ghana game in its entirety this morning. I am so ashamed.

I don’t know when exactly I started using the term “sports ball”, but it’s kind of become my general term for all sports involving balls, especially since I don’t follow any sports enough to actually consider myself a fan.

This strip is dedicated to those of you living in Korea who now have completely messed up sleeping schedules. When games start at 1:00AM and keep going until it’s time for work, you’re going to have a bad time. I’d be lying if I said that I wasn’t a little bummed about the whole thing, as it seems like I won’t get to witness watching the game in a sea of Korean fans in red at my local World Cup stadium. I hear it got pretty wild in 2010, but I didn’t get here until right after it was all over.

Guest Post: Davy’s Day Cometh


Everybody needs a hero, whatever walk of life they’re in. Sporting ones seem to hold an especial one in people’s lives. I’ve been very fortunate to have befriended many of my heroes over the years. People like Noel Meade, Trevor Brennan, Colm O’Rourke and Graham Geraghty. Heroes are particularly important in a sporting context – they inspire the next generation.

Haps Interview: American Pitcher Shane Youman Reacts to Controversial Remarks



It’s been an interesting 24-hours for Lotte Giants pitcher, Shane Youman. The 33-year-old starting pitcher from New Iberia, Louisiana unsuspectedly was at the center of controversy yesterday, when Hanwha Eagles’ slugger Kim Tae-kyun was asked during an appearance on an Internet baseball radio broadcast about difficulties batting with the Giants’ ace on the mound.

The star Korean slugger replied:

“The Lotte Giants’ Youman is the most difficult player to play against. His face is too black, so it is hard to bat because his white teeth and the ball confuses me when he smiles on the mound. So, I suffered a lot."

He then went on to add, “There’s no particularly difficult pitcher, but when I play against Youman, I screw up because of his white teeth.”

An eruption of negative comments ensued on Korean baseball forums as Korean netizens charged Kyun with making racist statements. The outpouring from fans caused both Kim and the Eagles to immediately issue personal apologies to Youman.

In an exclusive e-mail interview with Haps, Youman gives his take on the comments, the controversy and to baseball life for an African-American journeyman in Korea.

Health Kick

Health Kick

Rice, every day, for breakfast, lunch and dinner is starting to catch up with me. At first, the food I avoided because it was too spicy or just plain weird is now what I crave, so the weight I lost when I first got to Korea has found its way back to me, and it's invited its friends to join in.

Any indoor tennis court in Busan? No problem paying. And Tennis lesson

Anyone know if there's any indoor tennis court in Busan? The weather is so annoying lately so it would be great if i can play indoor with my friends. 


I'm also looking for a tennis lesson every weekend, but i don't have much budget for that so i hope you guys can help me with Tennis lesson in English or Korean. Thanx a lot

Judo Tournament in Busan, South Korea

I had the opportunity to watch an incredible judo tournament held in Busan, South Korea, where I currently live and teach English.  The event was held in the Gudeok Sports Arena and attracted well over 300 competitors.  The tournament did not include Busan’s top tier players, or “professionals” as they call them, but had some fantastic talent nonetheless.  It was clear to me the moment I got to the arena that this would be a different experience for me altogether.  As I came into the building there were no concession stands, no t-shirts for sale, noone collecting money – I literally walked in off the street through the open do

All the Taes……Taegeuk-do Village and Taejongdae

Being light in the wallet and with springs glorious charms upon us I have taken to discovering the hidden charms of Busan rather than straying further afield. I’ve lived in Busan now for close to eleven months and visited the city several times the year before. However, until a week or so ago I was unaware of the existence of Taegeuk-do village. I guess it is a little under-reported in the media and has only been really considered a tourist attraction in recent times. This area is steeped in history, most of it inglorious and it is only the recent arrival of an artistic redevelopment that has garnered it significant attention.

ROKD Republic of Korea Roller Derby Practice and RECRUITING in Seoul

Saturday, January 14, 2012 - 13:00

Do you have a New Year's resolution yet? I have just the thing for you…




Create goals, lose weight, make new friends, and learn a new sport; whatever this year’s goal is, DERBY is here for you.


You may be asking, what is derby?

Check out our page at!/ROKD.Republic.Of.Korea.Derby.


Become a skater, referee or a volunteer. No previous experience or skates necessary for your first practice. Just an open mind!!!


January 14/15 Local practices Daegu and Seoul

Sat 1-4pm, Sun 12-3pm

Email us for more information at


Hope to see you on the track! 

Republic of Korea Derby (ROKD) League Practice & NEW PLAYER RECRUITING

Saturday, January 7, 2012 - 13:00

Do you have a New Year's resolution yet? I have just the thing for you…




Create goals, lose weight, make new friends, and learn a new sport; whatever this year’s goal is, DERBY is here for you.


You may be asking, what is derby?

Check out our page at!/ROKD.Republic.Of.Korea.Derby.


Become a skater, referee or a volunteer. No previous experience or skates necessary for your first practice. Just an open mind!!!


January 7/8 League practice Daegu
Sat 1-4pm, Sun 12-3pm
League meeting Sat 4pm


Email us for more information at


Hope to see you on the track!

Picture our Face: Fundraiser for Save the Children (Daejeon Cantina)

Saturday, December 17, 2011 - 16:30

Picture My Face Bookings, ROKD, and THe Daejeon Cantina are teaming up to bring you 15 of the best bands from all accross Korea for one great
cause- Save The Children: Korea! (details below)

Divided into a 'Day Stage'...
 and a 'Night Stage', MC'ed by the ladies of ROKD(Korea's first and only Roller Derby league) and running nearly 11 hours, this will be the BEST Live music event in Daejeon all year:

My Repeated Failure at Watching Sport on the Telly in Korea

Yesterday marked the end of the month of Irish sport on television, that is television streamed through the internet and watched on my computer. It has taken me five years of living in Korea to master the art of searching through Google for the relevant link to watch a match, which is impressive. It was an ordeal I would recommend to anyone as the rewards are worthwhile, although they could have been much better.

For starters this is not the first time I’ve tried to find sport via the ould interweb. I know that when herself when was in Ireland, she never had any problems watching the things she wanted to. There are a few Korean websites that post television shows up after they are shown for the first time. I imagine you can do the same with certain Irish programmes too, but with live sport it’s completely different.

Daegu 2011 – An Armchair Interpretation of the Plight of Two Underachieving Nations in Track and Field

A few days before the IAAF World Athletics Championship in Daegu commenced, the president of Korea Lee Myung Bak proudly declared that the championships would inspire Koreans to develop their abilities in this area. But after only five days, Yonhap News declared that Korea is in danger of getting shut out after missing so many goals with their athletes being forced to watch from the sidelines as headline after headline was created by the international community. Did something go wrong, or should they have just not have been so excited? Perhaps they should have spoken to Ireland beforehand.

Ireland and Korea are not renowned for their prowess in track and field. Daegu 2011 is another good example of this. This isn’t an attempt to disparage the efforts of those who have put their heart and soul into competing in the event – my own efforts pale in comparison to theirs – but, as the title would suggest, an armchair analysis of the whole rigmarole.

World Athletics Championships, Daegu 2011

Fresh off my Vietnamese adventure I felt it was high time I went off and did something else I have never done in my life. Two days after touching down on Korean soil again I was on the KTX headed up to Daegu to meet Sam at the train station. Last year Sam was generous to but me tickets for the innaugral Korean F1 Grand Prix so I felt it necessary to return the gift. A couple of months back I purchased tickets for the opening day of the World Atletics Championships. The tickets being so reasonably priced I decided to get both morning and evening session tickets for the pair of us.

Busan e-FM Week 6: Busan Festivals, Events and Places

About 'Open Mike in Busan'


By the time I reached my sixth week at Busan e-FM, they’d moved from the centrally-based Yeonsan-dong KNN building to Centum City in Haeundae, in the increasingly fashionable Eastern fringe of the city, where KNN are building their monstrous new headquarters.


As everyone knows, there’s certainly always a lot happening in Busan, so for my sixth week on Inside Out Busan at Busan e-FM, I thought I’d talk about some of my experiences visiting festivals, and going out to various events and places here in the city.

Busan Fireworks Festival

Shaolin Soccer

Apparently it was the dream of many Korean men to watch the World Cup on a 3D TV. I thought that was a little optimistic but then I found one in Lotte Department Store near us, proving at least that the technology was really out there as opposed to 'coming soon'. However, at around 2.5 million won (£1,400/$2,100), for many it may have remained a dream for now, although Samsung claim to have sold 26,000 3D TVs in Korea, so evidently some had the money to make the leap of faith.

The Sandman

When I discovered that finance ministers and central bankers from the G-20 were meeting in Busan I felt like I wanted to go and stand outside the hotel to watch because suddenly, as a financial trader, my world was coming to me - here in the relative backwater that is Korea's second city, and I wondered if I would ever again be in the presence of so much collective inaction. But as events transpired, by the time they reached Busan, all I wanted to do was catch a glimpse of the British Chancellor of the Exchequer and shout “Stop letting President Obama kick sand in our faces, Mr.

The Kite Runner

The 40th Busan International Kite Festival was held this weekend, so yesterday we went along to watch and fly kites of our own around the periphery of the event, which apparently is the done thing. This involved actually buying a kite first, but given that kite flying is a reasonably popular activity in Busan, it isn't that difficult to find shops selling them in appropriate locations.

Busan Bulls Rugby Team - All Are Welcome

The Busan Bulls rugby team (RFC) is looking for more men and women to get involved in the ever-growing sport of rugby here in Korea. Korean nationals and foreigners alike are encouraged to come out and have some fun with other laid-back folks who love to have a good time. No experience needed, great way to meet new people in a social atmosphere, the ability to travel around Korea for games (Seoul, Ulsan, Daegu, etc), and get fit while having a great time. Just casual games scheduled so far, so it won't be a big commitment. Enjoy the good-times culture of rugby here in Korea while the beautiful Busan sun shines. For more information, email Pete (, or visit us on facebook.


I've never been to see a basketball game before; it's not very popular in England. So I jumped at the chance to see a game in Busan last Saturday afternoon, where judging on the crowd turnout, it isn't very popular either. Which is a shame, because while it doesn't have the epic feel of 30,000 people crammed into Sajik Stadium for a baseball game, being seated closer to the action allows for a much more personal experience.


 Hi everyone

Im looking for partners to do a capoeira (preferably - angola, but regional also welcome) itself and training (). If you interested - email me on

if you don't know what's capoeira - visit youtube

and if you're interested - contact me by i can give a beginner lessons.


im not a mestre or instructor, just capoeira fan with experience. 

and yes, i'm a foreigner 




Event Horizon

"Chuseok is one of Korea’s most largely celebrated holidays. It is a time when families and friends gather to share food and enjoy their time together, giving thanks to their ancestors for the year's bountiful harvests." - Korea Tourism OrganizationBut there was no bountiful harvest for me on Saturday - except of misfortune; Chuseok will now also be known as the day I caused the Great Internet

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