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Koreans Love Baseball Too

I’ve been anticipating the start of the Korean baseball season pretty much since the end of last season when, due to still being a newbie to Korea, I knew little about it and was likewise unable to secure any tickets to a game here in Busan. It’s a shame because the Busan squad, Lotte Giants, happens to be one of the better squads in league.

Why I Love Jagalchi Fish Market - Busan Awesome

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Woman showing an octopus to an interested customer in Jagalchi fish Market, BusanOne of the first places I almost always take friends that visit Busan is Jagalchi fish market.  It’s a strange place.  While it’s a pretty well-established place to visit, the fish market is a bit of an oddity.  Going and watching old women gut and chop up dead fish is not exactly akin to relaxing on the beach in the ranks of must-do tourist activities.  The best explanation I can come up with for why I keep going back, is that I unknowingly despise fish.  Some inner chamber of my subconscious mind must love to watch them suffer and squirm.   Strangely, consciously I’ve got nothing against fish.  I don’t love them, but my enjoyment of Jagalchi market must go beyond pure aquatic schadenfreude. (Squid, on the other hand, are truly evil and horrible creatures.)

So here are some other possible reasons why I like the fish market so much.

Creepy ugly octopuses on display at Jagalchi fish market, Busan-It’s pretty much a free aquarium.  But weirder and scarier,  like a horror aquarium.  So many creepy, freakish looking creatures, packed into tanks while their friends and family are being hacked apart and gutted above them.

-The fish market is one of the best spots to photograph people in Busan.  It does feel slightly exploitative to walk around snapping photos of poor people while they’re working.  It made me think of a few unhappy years I spent as a house painter, and how I’d have felt had groups of Korean tourists crowded around me with their expensive cameras, taking pictures of me while I suffered through my work day.  It’s gotta be really annoying, still, you can get some pretty cool photos.

Women selling fish and assorted fish products at Jagalchi Fish Market, Busan.-Getting sashimi can be fun.  On the second floor of the indoor area can be a great place for some cheap seafood.  While you won’t be blown away by any extraordinarily sanitary conditions, at least you’ll know it’s fresh when they guy brings it to you, still alive, to ask if the fish he’s about to kill and feed you  looks okay.  Also the fish being cooked on the grills outside, along the street, look and smell fantastic.

-It’s convenient.  Right beside Nampo-dong.  Only a few stops from Busan Station.  It’s definitely easy to find and get around.  Stop by for a few minutes before catching your train, or make it part of a Nampo shopping day.

Buckets of dried sardines, Jagalchi Fish Market, Busan-There are some great views of the port and of the surrounding hillside neighborhoods here.  It’s definitely worth a look around.  Also, try going to the top of the Lotte Department store in Nampo.  There’s a sky garden that has some of my favorite views of Busan.

Well it may not be the most crowd-pleasing,  relaxing, or pleasant smelling  spot in Busan.  Jagalchi wins major points for being among the most interesting places.  You’ll definitely see things that you just aren’t gonna experience in too many other places.

Directions:  Take the Orange metro line to Jagalchi Station.  Go out exit 10.  Walk straight until you see the market gate on your right, follow that street until the end.


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Korean Baseball - Live Internet Streaming

If you are a fan of the Lotte Giants or just Korean baseball in general and either, like me, decided you don't need a TV or haven't subscribed to the full cable package, you can now get live streaming baseball on your computer without having to go through any complicated sign-up for membership stuff that so many sites have.

Go to and click on the VOD live game of your choice. Install in the necessary software and Active X controls and away you go. (Internet Explorer only works for this). The stream is pretty damn superb at 3000K

Also if you missed the game or want to re-live that Lee Dae Ho home run you can watch all the old games in full by clicking on 야구다시보기 near the top right of screen and finding the appropriate game.

Korean Shijo/Sijo Form: kinda like a haiku.

Simply put, a Korean 시조/shijo is alot like a Japanese haiku: rhyming doesn't matter and its all in the syllables. I spell it shijo as it most closely matches the Korean pronunciation of shijo as opposed to the substandard sijo as sijo could be erroneously pronounced as see joe. Sijo? No. I see Dick and Jane.

A shijo is generally a three line poem with a pause in each of the three lines. The pause is not necessary but is found in some Korean shijo poems.

Like haiku, rhyming is not necessary.
Some may tell you that a shijo is not three lines but that it is more. They are referring to what may be called a shijo sequence. But lets not fill the air with noise and just stick to a shijo proper for now.
Many of these short three line shijos have been written as far back as the Goguryeo and Paekjae kingdoms. Many have been written during the Koryo and Joseon Dynasties.

Now for the syllables.

Busan e-FM Week 11: Apartment Experiences

About 'Open Mike in Busan'


For this week on Inside Out Busan, I thought I’d talk about something that’s quite significant in this country, which is where you live, and I’ll also talk about some of my Korean property experiences.

The differences between Korea and England

Korean Gender Reader

(“Alice {The Devil’s Bride}” by Stephen Fabian; source)

1) Rape and “Blood Money”

Busan's Vagina Monologues 2011 (Video)

The Vagina Monologues
@ Vinyl Underground
Busan, Korea
February 27, 2011

The videos below deal with mature themes and include adult language.  
Please click the back button if you think you might be offended.

Scenes from a movie on Geoje Island

As Steve and I recalled our trip to Geoje Island, we compared it to scenes from a movie. We made the comparison to movie scenes because it was a really fun day, effortless, carefree, and seemed almost too perfect to be real.
Scene 1: Steve and I wait outside Dunkin Donuts in Gimhae for Sally (our co-worker) and her boyfriend (Sunshine) to pick us up. We have only had about three quick lunchtime conversations with Sally and are now planning to spend the entire day with her and her boyfriend. They pull up to the meeting place and enthusiastically wave at us and smile. We get in the car and begin our 1 hour and 30 minute journey to Geoje Island. On the way we chat non-stop and eat birthday cake (from Sunshine's birthday the night before) with chopsticks by passing the container around the car. We arrive at Geoje Island, via a newly built underwater tunnel which you can read about here.

Aile Turkish Restaurant & Mediterranean Halal Food (NOW CLOSED)

AILE has now closed.
Thanks to all those who supported us during our AILE Journey. 
Stay tuned for any updates. 

Aile Turkish Restaurant Menu
Aile - Great Mediterranean Food, Friendly Hosts, Very Reasonable Prices
Hummus, Falafel, Kebap, Kofte, Kavurnma, Pide, Breakfast, & More Full Menu Below

Open: 11:30am ~ 11:00pm
(Closed Mondays)

Korea’s Indebtedness Is A Problem

Rising Interest Rates & High Debt Levels: A Bad Combination
The Seoul Gyopo Guide has been pointing out two areas of concern for the Korean economy: lower real estate prices and heavy indebtedness occurring as a result of inflation the high cost of living. The Dong-A Ilbo pointed out that indebtedness in Korea has soared.

Bank of Korea’s Difficult Task Continues
The Bank of Korea (BOK) has had an unenviable task. Inflation has increased, in part because import prices are high. Why is that? The Korean Won is weak. However, that same, weak Korean Won encourages exports of Korean-made products. Usually, central banks use the level of interest rates to dampen inflation. The BOK has been widely expected to continue to increase interest rates. However, at the same time, the BOK has been believed to have been intervening in the foreign exchange markets in order to weaken the Won. In short, the Bank of Korea is in between a rock and a hard place. Recent actions suggest that the BOK is trying to have it both ways.


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