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Hongdae Free market: Unterwegs zwischen Künstlern und Coffeeshops

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Wem Gangnam zu teuer, oder das Shoppingviertel von Myeongdong zu krass übertrieben ist, für den haben wir hier das Richtige. Eröffnet während der Fussball-WM in 2002 hat sich der Free market von Hongdae mittlerweile dauerhaft in den Veranstaltungskalender eingetragen. Der Hongdae Free market Auf dem Markt verkaufen Künstler – und alle die es werden wollen –

Der Beitrag Hongdae Free market: Unterwegs zwischen Künstlern und Coffeeshops erschien zuerst auf MAYERKIM. - Dein deutscher Blog über Korea & Seoul. Alles, was du garantiert (nicht) über Seoul, koreanische Kultur und Reisen nach Korea wissen musst. Inkl. Sightseeing und Nightlife!

Say it like a Korean! How to describe taste in Korean.

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Korean Language

Describe Taste in Korean - Part 1

1. Jjah-da. 짜다. or Jjah-yo. 짜요. | It’s salty.
2. Shing-geop-da. 싱겁다. or Shing-geo-wah-yo. 싱거워요. | It’s bland (needs more salt).
3. Dal-da. 달다. or Dal-ah-yo. 달아요. | It’s sweet.
4. Shi-da. 시다. or Shi-uh-yo. 시어요. | It’s sour.
5. Maep-da. 맵다. or Mae-wah-yo. 매워요. | It’s spicy.
6. SSu-da. 쓰다. or Sseo-yo. 써요. | It’s bitter.

Describe taste in Korean - Part 1

Describe Taste in Korean - Part 2

1. Shi-won-ha-da. 시원하다. or Shi-won-hae-yo. 시원해요.
When used in the context of dining, it can mean a few different things:
• It’s cool (temperature wise). This is the literal meaning.
• It’s refreshing.
• It’s soothing to the stomach or it’s removing the greasy feeling in the stomach. This can be
applied to even hot (temperature wise) or spicy soups.

2. Go-so-ha-da. 고소하다. or Go-so-hae-yo. 고소해요.
There is no exact equivalent meaning in English. Koreans use the phrase to describe the taste of sesame
oil, sesame seeds, nuts or soy milk. The closest expression in English would be “nutty.”

3. Goo-soo-ha-da. 구수하다. or Goo-soo-hae-yo. 구수해요.
This phrase describes the savory taste that come from doenjang (fermented soybean paste).

4. Neu-ki-ha-da. 느끼하다. or Neu-ki-hae-yo. 느끼해요.
This phrase describes the uncomfortable feeling in the stomach when you eat greasy or very creamy

5. Ddurb-da. 떫다. or Ddur-beo-yo. 떫어요.
Similar to an astringent taste, Koreans use this to describe the taste of an unripe persimmon. It’s more
of a puckering sensation in the mouth, like when you eat cranberries.

The phrases that end with “yo” are used toward an older person or a stranger to be polite without being too formal.

You can use the phrases that end with “yo” as questions by raising the intonation at the end. For example, “Go-so-hae-yo?” can be used to ask, “Is it nutty?”

Describe taste in Korean - Part 2

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I’m Special, SPECIAL! So Special, SPECIAL!

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My school (the white one in the middle).

My school (the white one in the middle).

Let me start by saying that my school is special. Yes, I know that in my last post I said that everyone’s journey through EPIK is unique, thus everyone’s school is “special.” And that’s true. I stand by that. But mine is reallllllly special/unusual. And I don’t mean that to sound braggy, but it’s kinda true. Here’s why.

I teach at the Ulsan Sports Science Middle and High School. What the heck is that, you ask? It’s one of just a few schools in the entire country for gifted, pre-professional athletes. Crazy, right? I’m teaching English to future Olympians and world champions!

When I arrived in August, the school had only existed for one semester. It’s basically brand new. So new, in fact, that the actual campus won’t be completed until January 2015! The building I’m currently working in is just a temporary site. At the end of this semester, there will be a big move to the new, permanent grounds. Once that happens, students will stay overnight in on-campus dormitories during the week and return home on the weekends. Right now they are housed at a make-shift hotel, and a bus transports them to and from school each day.

My future school, which will be completed this fall! We move into it in February 2015.

My future school, which will be completed this fall! We move into it in February 2015.

I’m sure you’re wondering, ‘Is that really necessary?’ Well, when you look at their daily schedule, the answer is undeniably, ‘yes.’ Monday through Friday, students wake up at 6:00 AM and are driven into school by 6:30 AM. For the next hour they have a training and conditioning session. Breakfast is served at 7:40 AM. The first class of the day starts at 8:40 AM and is followed by three more one-hour periods. This is the “academic” portion of the day (classes in history, science, math, Korean, English, etc). Lunch is from 12:30-1:40 PM. From 1:40-6:00 PM students attend sport-specific training sessions and have a small amount of time to do homework. Dinner is served from 6:00-7:00 PM. After that, the most skilled athletes have additional training time until 9:30 PM. I’m not sure what the other kids do. Everyone is back at the “dorm” by 10:00 PM and lights have to be out shortly thereafter. Then they wake up and do it all over again. Or at least, they do it all over again.

Ulsan Sports Science Middle and High School.

Ulsan Sports Science Middle and High School.

On the weekends, sometimes students travel for competitions (interesting sidenote: the top performing athletes recently went to Singapore for a week as part of an exchange program they started with a sports school there). Other students spend their Saturdays and Sundays going to private schools for additional study time (called “hagwon”), or have even more training sessions. The sports they focus on include: taekwondo, judo, boxing, track and field, modern triathlon, shooting, archery, gymnastics, wrestling, swimming and canoeing (still haven’t figured out what they mean by that last one…do they really mean…canoeing?). They also frequently play soccer, basketball, badminton and dodgeball.

For this semester, I teach 2 middle school classes once a week with 20 students each, 2 high school classes once a week with 25 students each, another advanced-English high school class twice a week, and 3 different sections of adult classes for the school staff, teachers and coaches twice a week (each with no more than 11 students per class). Over the next few years, enrollment will gradually increase, which means next semester I will start taking on more teaching hours.

My middle school classroom!

My middle school classroom!

While there are many unique aspects to teaching at this school, perhaps the most fun “class” I teach every week is with the high-level-English students. It’s called “Sports Activity” class. And by that I mean, “play sports with the students and get them to use English as much as possible in a casual, engaging, sports-based way.” In my three weeks of teaching here, so far I’ve played badminton, dodgeball and soccer!

And top of all of this awesomeness, my co-teacher is phenomenal, the staff has been overwhelmingly friendly and welcoming, and the students seem to like me. I could go on and on about all the nice things they’ve done, but I’ll save all those stories for another day. Instead I’ll wrap things up with a little shout-out to the Big Man Upstairs and my parents’ genes for giving me a fair amount of athletic ability and a growing passion for sports! I’m going to need all the physical aptitude and hand-eye coordination I can get this year, so I’m glad I’m not starting from scratch!

*Disclaimer* If I came off as obnoxious or overly braggy in this post, I’m sorry. I’m just excited about where I work!


We've reached 100 videos! Here are some outtakes.

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It's been a great year and a half (almost two years actually) since I started the YouTube channel and began teaching Korean through videos. So many of you have been supportive of me since the very beginning, and many others found my channel more recently and have been just as helpful. Thanks to your support, we've reached 100 videos on the channel. To commemorate this, I've put together a quick reel of outtakes from filming.

Thank you all again, and enjoy :-)


 Learn Korean with GO! Billy Korean





Spaghetti Alphabet?

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I recently realized that I am a complete hypocrite. Well, in all honesty I've known this for a while, especially when it comes to giving advice, but I had the fact practically thrown in my face the other night. As a teacher of a foreign language, I'm constantly trying to stress communication over perfection. By which I mean, it is more important that you can talk to someone, get your point across, even if your grammar is barely grammar and you're speaking mainly in nouns and hand gestures. Were you able to buy the coffee you wanted? Did they answer your question? Laugh at your joke? A+

My students, and I think most language students, struggle with the desire to be perfect. Often, when I ask my older students a simple question that I know they understand, I'm still met with...silence. Averted eyes. Maybe if we don't move she can't see us.

While of course I would love to only get answers like "My favorite food is pizza" or "I saw you at the store yesterday. You were wearing red pants", I'm entirely satisfied with "Pizza very very like" and "Teacher! At the store...I saw you! Red pants!" because hey, at least we're communicating. Depending on what we're studying, I'll either correct them or let it slide. Some of the mistakes are even a bit wonderful. "Teacher! Spaghetti...uh...alphabet?" I allow myself to imagine an alphabet of spaghetti before realizing that all they need is some help spelling the word.

Technically not spaghetti.

When school lets out, the teacher becomes the student. I may spend  8 or 9 hours a day trying to shove some English into their poor brains, but once I go out into the world. I'm the one trying to shove Korean into my own brain, with varying degrees of success.

The first few months of studying were fantastic. When you're starting from the bare minimum, if you put in a little effort, it's easy to progress pretty quickly. At least, that's what happened to me. Studying was exciting, because every new grammar point opened up whole worlds of communication previously closed to me, the uninitiated. I'd gleefully get into conversations with anyone who put up with me, not unlike a toddler who will talk to anyone about horses or ice cream or whatever they're super into at the time. I didn't know enough to know if I was making mistakes. I was Eve before the apple. It was glorious.

But, like shows directed by Joss Whedon, the easy part of language learning was doomed to end before it even had a chance. Like some kind of language junkie, it took me more and more studying to get my fix, and I was afraid to use my newly learned conjugations for fear of making a dumb mistake. When faced with a question I knew I could answer, I would freeze, avoiding eye contact, hoping that if I didn't move, the questioner wouldn't see me. Because I knew that I was capable of saying something correctly, I was no longer comfortable spouting out my usual combination of mangled sentences and charades. At the time I was totally unaware of the irony of that attitude. Or if I was, I avoided thinking about it too much.

All this leads me to last Thursday. I'm preparing for a violin/saxophone duet in an upcoming festival (that's a whole other story I'll have to narrate here), so I met...let's call him Music Teacher after school to work on our song. He barely speaks any English, though he can understand a bit, so any time we spend together is a big challenge for me. Also, he mumbles, which is an absolute nightmare for my comprehension. Fortunately he's also entirely willing to repeat stuff in different ways until I figure it out or we have to go to the dictionary.

Anyways, after practice he took me out for dinner and we talked for the better part of an hour, about music and teaching and things we've been up to. More than once my Korean completely fell apart, but since A) I didn't really have a choice and B) I managed to get my point across when I needed to, I didn't let my mistakes get to me.

On the way home, somehow our conversation turned to how much my Korean had improved since the last time he saw me. I responded with my usual "No, I'm not very good..." (of course imagine all this is in Korean), but he continued to try and convince me.

"I'm okay but...I want to be better. I want to be able to speak well now. I don't have any patience."

"But we're communicating already! So it's okay." 

That was the moment when I realized how much of a hypocrite I'd become. Here I was discouraging my students from beating themselves up over mistakes, encouraging them to do their best even if it wasn't perfect, while at the same time beating myself up over mistakes and not daring to try if I didn't know the best way to say something. I guess the whole point of writing this is to be a reminder to myself, and to anyone learning a language, to anyone learning, well anything; don't be afraid to make mistakes. Keep your spaghetti alphabet at hand, and you're sure to find success.

As my dance instructor Ling Hui used to say, "Try as you could."

Teacher Pretty
Middle school ESL teacher, lover of pink, eater of kimchi, addicted to Etude House, expert procrastinator, meeter of 2-dimensionial popstars: Ana. That's me.

About   Teaching   Advice   Beauty   How-To   Food   Langauge   Tumblr

Win Copies of K-POP Now by Tuttle Publishing

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Based on the awesome response of our previous giveaway contest we are encouraged to come up with a new giveaway contest for the book K-POP Now by Mark James Russell. This book is published by Tuttle Publishing and this time they will be giving away not 3, but 5 copies of K-POP Now to anyone who will answer 3 simple questions about K-POP.

Tell us in the comment section below your answer for the following 3 questions.

  1. How and when did you start liking or following K-POP?
  2. How would you introduce K-POP to someone new?
  3. Who are your favourite KPOP icons?

Just answer these 3 simple questions above in the comment section below along with your contact info – your name, valid email id, age and country. The top 3 winners will be selected randomly and the one who answers creatively has a higher chance of winning. Winners will be notified via email by Tuttle Publishing in the first week of October.

The contest closes on 30 September 2014. So answer soon.

More about this book:

K-Pop Now! features one hundred and twenty-eight glossy pages of Korean pop eye-candy. K-Pop Now! takes a fun look at Korea’s high-energy pop music, and is written for its growing legions of fans. It features all the famous groups and singers, and takes an insider’s look at how they have made it to the top.

In 2012, Psy’s song and music video “Gangnam Style” suddenly took the world by storm. But K-Pop, the music of Psy’s homeland of Korea has been winning fans for years with its infectious melodies and high-energy fun. Featuring incredibly attractive and talented singers and eye-popping visuals, K-Pop is the music of now.

Though K-Pop is a relatively young phenomenon in the West, it is rapidly gaining traction and reaching much larger audiences—thanks in large part to social media like Facebook, YouTube and Twitter. Top K-Pop acts get ten million to thirty million hits for their videos—the Girls Generation single “Gee” has over a hundred million views!

In K-Pop Now! you’ll find:

  • Profiles of all the current K-Pop artists and their hits
  • A look at Seoul’s hippest hot spots and hangouts
  • Interviews with top artists like Kevin from Ze:A and Brian Joo
  • A look at the K-Pop idols of tomorrow

You’ll meet the biggest record producers, the hosts of the insanely popular “Eat Your Kimchi” website, and K-Pop groups like Big Bang, TVXQ, 2NE1, Girls Generation, HOT, SES, FinKL Busker Busker and The Koxx. The book also includes a guide for fans who plan to visit Seoul to explore K-Pop up close and personal.

Mid Autumn Festival

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Mid Autumn Fest is celebrated differently in Korea and Singapore/Taiwan. If I ever move to Korea the only thing I might miss (during mid autumn) are the moon cakes!

Baked moon cakes from Goodwood Park. (I like the snow-skin kind better)

A Korean thanksgiving meal - at Kimchi boy's house. The whole family would gather early in the morning and after some morning rituals(?), they will all have breakfast together. 

It is so funny how I always dread korean food when I was in Korea. Now that I am back in Singapore, I occasionally crave for korean food. Most convenient & cheapest way is to get it at Utown, NUS. Decent but not authentic.

Hong Seok-cheon's 두근두근 레스토랑 Smartphone Game

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It is testament to Hong Seok-cheon's increasing popularity that Kakao has released a new game featuring the TV personality / restauranteur. When playing "Heart Throb Restaurant" (kind of...), keep in mind that Hong Seok-cheon ended up opening restaurants in Itaewon to survive a period of time when Korea had completely turned its back on him due to his decision to come out.

The video of him making emoticons for the game is pretty adorable.

However, the game doesn't look like anything special. I might try it out for HSC solidarity and Korean language practice though...

Getting Drunk in Korea: Your Guide to Korean Alcohols

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You might not think of Korea as a nation of drinkers, but they sure do love their alcohol. Not only does the nation have a lot of different alcohols, but when they’re out on the town, they revel in mixing them together. Honestly, you’ve no idea how far down the warren the rabbit can stumble.

Somaek (소맥)


Anyone that’s ever visited Korea should be familiar with Soju, the nation’s favourite distilled rice liquor. The people here love it, and there is almost no occasion when the serving of soju is inappropriate. At around 19% proof, its strong, almost medicinal taste is often compared with vodka. Indeed soju is to Korea what vodka is to Russia. The cavalier mixing of this beloved intoxicant with beer (maekju, 맥주) creates an entirely new, yet still utterly Korean brew know as Somaek. The mixing of these two drinks is surprisingly delicious and, obviously, rather potent.

Makgeolli (막걸리)


Given its sickly off-white appearance this rice wine tastes nothing like what you might expect. It’s sweet and tangy and comes served in a large communal pot, which is then dished out into separate drinking bowls. The more prudent drinker will often dilute Makgeoli with lemonade, which makes it all the fizzier. You can also find its cousin Dongdongju (동동주), which is slightly less sweet and occasionally contains small chucks of rice.

Baekseju (백세주)


This slightly bitter tasting potation is made with ginseng, ginger, cinnamon, and all manner of herbs. Baekseju, translating as “100 Years Rice Wine,” is said to have alchemical properties that aids in the reaching the ripe old age of 100. It’s a little more expensive than other Korean rice-wines, therefore thrifty drinkers mix baekseju with soju forming Ohshipseju (오십세주, 50 years rices wine). It won’t make you live as long but it is lusciously inebriating.

Bokbunja (복분자)


This delicious little tipple is as close to western wine as Korea gets. Instead of grapes this sweet and fruity vino is produced from mountain berries and is quite the favourite of young ladies. The drink also proves popular with guys, as it is said to be a potent aphrodisiac.

Cheonnyeon Yaksok (천년약속)


The official toasting drink of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) of 2005 in Busan, Cheonnyeon Yaksok, or “Thousand Year Promise” in English, is a fermented mushroom alcohol special to Korea. It’s slightly sticky, sweet and comes with a pleasing aftertaste.

Brief Korean Drinking Etiquette


As with just about every social encounter in Korea, there are a panoply of social rules to observe, especially if the occasion involves co-workers or elders. As a foreigner, however, you should be fine to smash any and all taboos with near-complete impunity.

One of the first things you’ll notice is that Koreans rarely pour their own drink. Usually the youngest person at the table will do the honours, holding the bottle with both hands. Men quite often pour with a straight back and one hand flat across their chest. Should the person pouring your intoxicant be older then accept it with both hands on the glass.

Gonbae! (Cheers!)

A note from the Editor-in-Chimp: This article was originally posted here on Travel Wire Asia. Go and check them out too if you like.

The post Getting Shitfaced in Korea: Your Guide to Korean Alcohols appeared first on Monkeyboy Goes.




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