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Getting Free Bibimbap in Korea | 비빔밥 먹방

13 hours 11 min ago

Earlier this year I took a trip to a Korean temple to get some free Bibimbap [비빔밥]. Yes, "free." I wanted to film my experience going there, and also to talk about the dish.

Also you might notice that this video is longer than my usual food videos. It's a different video style that I wanted to try once. If you like it, I might make more food and travel videos in this style.

Check it out~!

The post Getting Free Bibimbap in Korea | 비빔밥 먹방 appeared first on Learn Korean with GO! Billy Korean.

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Ang Traje de Boda sa Ukay-ukay PART 5

Fri, 2017-11-24 00:30
PART 5: Ang Bangkay Hindi ako makapaniwala sa aking nabasa. “Paano nangyari iyon?” Muli kong tinignan ang newspaper clipping na naglalaman ng mga pangalan at larawan ng apat na kasamang nasawi ni Celeste sa malagim na aksidente dalawang taon na … Continue reading →

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Solar and human powered trike project stranded in Busan

Thu, 2017-11-23 00:06
Solar and human powered trike project stranded in Busan

As some may still remember of the Swiss Solar Impulse 2 which flew around the world using only solar power, the Solatrike-Project of another Swiss guy head off about the same time. Since July 2015 the Solatrike of David Brandenberger is on the road from Europe to South Korea. The solar and human powered recumbent Trike passed on this way 17 countries and filled 22’000km so far.

The Swiss traveller was looking for something to transport a load of luggage in a sportive and environmental saving way. He chose a bike because of the slow travelling speed and to get in contact with locals, but his luggage was too heavy to pull it all. That’s why he thought about a motor as an assist and solar panels to charge the battery independent of energy sources. He found the Czech recumbent Trike fabrication AZUB, which did a race with something similar. They provided him with experience and a custom built recumbent Trike and trailer. Knowing only a little of electricity, solar power and bike repair, David Brandenberger head off to his adventure in direction Asia. His skills getting better in these things on the way, but the focus are still on photography and doing sketches.

He spent rainy nights with Uzbek construction workers in a worn out house in Kazakhstan, got interviewed by many reporters in Turkey, Bulgaria and Greece, survived a narrow construction road passing huge trucks in the dust in China or a night in a desert storm holding his tent against the fierce wind inside the Gobi desert. There are a lot of stories he could tell of his tour from the heat in Azerbaijan and the freezing cold in Kyrgyzstan, but the most he likes to tell about the friendliness of the people he encountered along the way. Some provided him with food along the way, invited him for a night to sleep, helped at repairs on the Trike or to find the right direction and others organized to find a company which could build a new trailer in Uzbekistan.

His goal is to travel with his Solatrike as far as he can and as long as it’s possible. If he could cycle around the world he will be more than glad. The half of the length around the Equator he already cycled and he is still in good mood to continue to South East Asia. Unfortunately he is stranded here in Busan for more than one and a half month now, trying in vain to ship his Solatrike to South East Asia. Crossing boarders by land with his bike was never a problem, but shipping it to another Country seems to be impossible. Every Country finds another reason to deny this travel to be continued. David hopes to find a good way out of this situation that he can continuing on his mission to promote solar and other alternative power like Solar Impulse 2 with his Solatrike-Project.

 

 

 

 

Peace Out Seoulmates: 15 Things I Hate About Korea

Tue, 2017-11-21 23:44
Deuces, Korea! In March of 2018, I’ll be leaving Korea. After 1 year in Busan and nearly 2 years in Seoul it’s time to bid adieu to the Land of Morning Calm.  I’ve had plenty of amazing travel experiences and local opportunities, dating blunders, and hagwon hells in Korea.  There’s plenty to love, but everyone loves to hate.  Here’s my list of things I won’t miss about living in Korea. Photographer: Leeroy #15 – Just Like T-T One thing about gyms and spas in Korea is that they give you the tiniest towels of all time.  How am I supposed to get my body dry enough with such a tiny towel?  I’m on a tight schedule to cover up with all the other ladies gawking at my waygookin parts.  I’m ready for a real towel, Korea – especially in the winter! #14 It smells like shit everywhere.

Korea is no longer a third world country, but there seem to be an awful lot of third world values.  The way people treat the streets as though the sidewalk is their own personal garbage can is infuriating.  It’s especially obnoxious when your ajumma landlord freaks out because you’ve managed to get some paper in the plastic recycling or have put your trash in the wrong gu’s bag (the horror!)  The plumbing is a massive issue here, too.  In Seoul it’s not quite as bad as it was in Busan, but Korea still smells like fecal matter in certain areas.  I joke that my apartment reeks of farts, but the plumbing here truly is garbage and until the frost came on it really did smell like crap.

Photographer: Kristopher Roller #13 Laundry – I want to burn all of my clothes

Is it really too much to install drying machines in these apartments?   With my ondol heating not being nearly as good as I’d like, my place is freezing.  No chance of opening these windows for a breeze!  In the winter, my clothes often smell musty/ moldy.  Through the rest of the year my washing machines have always just destroyed my clothes.  Packing up to go home shouldn’t be much of an issue considering I’d like to burn my entire wardrobe!

Photographer: Brooke Lark #12 Staying Healthy’s a Full-Time Job I have found trying to eat clean to be quite difficult.  The lack of affordable fruits and vegetables has made it really easy for me to fall into unhealthy habits.  People LOVE to eat bread in Korea.  My students are brought up thinking that glutinous rice is a health food.  They use margarine/ canola oil to cook just about everything.  Everything down to garlic bread is sweetened to high heaven.  I was told I’d lose so much weight in Korea due to the healthy diet here and honestly that’s just a bunch of hogwash.  I trained hard for 2 hours a day, 5 days a week and ate really clean to drop the weight.  This year I even enlisted the help of Sprout, a natural, healthy food delivery service across Korea.  No matter how much kimchi or kombucha you consume, there isn’t a quick and easy weight loss tool.  The lack of easy, health-conscious options in Korea is something I just won’t miss. Photographer: Markus Spiske #11 Personal Hygiene in Korea: What a Mess! Why put soap in the bathrooms when nobody washes their hands anyway?  Here – let’s put a bar of soap on a stick.  Those who DO want to use soap will have to pretend to give a handy while touching something riddled with someone else’s germs!  The number of times I’ve heard the hand-washing issue discussed has me…in disgust.  For good measure, let’s give coughing a drop here, too.  If I had a cheon-won for each time someone coughed a lung up on me while on the subway, I’d no longer have to teach English in Korea. Photographer: Erik Scheel #10 Retail Anxiety Another thing I won’t miss about living in Korea is the retail anxiety I experience every time I got to a grocery store or cosmetics shop.  As I descend into the LotteMart grocery department, my ears sting with the sound of vegetable vendors, meat merchants, and fishy fellas screaming at me to buy their wares.  I know that retailers shouting all day into microphones isn’t well-loved my foreigners, but the locals don’t really seem down for it either.  I’ve seen plenty of people young and old covering their ears… “시끄럽다!” Photographer: Karol Dach #9 Foreigner Price in Korea

On several occasions at markets, shops, bars, and in taxis I’ve been quoted a higher price than my Korean (or even simply Asian) friends.  Has this happened to you in your home country?  Of course it’s happened to me at nearly every country’s tourist attractions, but when I’ve lived in Korea nearly 3 years and am speaking Korean to the service agent it blows my mind to still be quoted astronomical prices simply because I’m not from Korea.

Photographer: Porapak Apichodilok #8 Here for your Edutainment When shop owners make fun of my Korean or wave their arms and squeal “Big Size-y!” while shooing me away it actually really hurts my feelings.  When I’m shopping I make every effort to be polite by bowing and speaking Korean in the most natural way I know how.  I wear a Korean size medium and generally have no issues fitting into “free size” garments.  I see you over there letting Korean women who are larger than me try on your clothing.  What gives? Photographer: Peter Kasprzyk #7 Taxi Drivers in Korea I have a major love/ hate relationship with Korean Taxi Drivers.  The fares are incredibly cheap and, in most urban areas, cabs are plentiful.  Sometimes I’ll get a very friendly driver who is just over the moon that I can speak my pitiful bit of baby Korean.  More often than not, they’ll see my blonde hair and when striking up a conversation will ask if I’m Russian.  Live here long enough and you’ll recognize that when a middle-aged/ older Korean man asks if you’re Russian, he’s asking if you’re a prostitute.  The backpedaling that has happened when I tell my driver in Korean that I’m a Canadian person is impressive.  That’s if they DO talk to me.  I’ve had situations where the driver won’t confirm my destination and will take me on a wild goose chase to hike the fare.  I shouldn’t have to call the cops just to get from point A to point B!  I also get perturbed when taxi drivers simply won’t pick up foreigners.  Sometimes if they do, they demand a flat rate and won’t use their meters.  Don’t they realize how badly this reflects on Korean people on the whole when a tourist has to stay out all night just to get back to his or her hotel? Photographer: Breather 6. Ondol Heating

My kingdom for a radiator! While I know many people love floor heating (I certainly did while staying in a hanok in the middle of winter), it’s not for me.  It’s November and I’ve been sleeping with 3 layers of clothing and 3 blankets on and my space heater aglow because it takes too darn long for my floor to heat up.  I’m also terrified of having a “the floor is lava” situation if any of the gazillion plastic things I own overheat and melt.

Photographer: Henrique Félix 5. The Sound of People in Korea Eating.

You’d think it’d be the soup I’d hate most, but it’s actually pizza.  The sound of people eating pizza in Korea makes my eyes water and my ears bleed.  I’m not (just) talking about Koreans, either.  A few of my ESL teacher friends who have been here 3 or 4 years masticate obnoxiously, too.

Photographer: Edu Lauton #4 빨리 빨리! “빨리 빨리”, or “hurry, hurry”, doesn’t actually mean productive or efficient.  This cultural phenomenon is a great way to pass the buck and save face.  People are moving along just fine and then all of a sudden it’s “hurry, hurry” time.  In North America, the annoyance is “hurry up and wait”.  In Korea it’s “wait…and then freak out because you just realized you messed up and have to fix the situation immediately or the whole world will implode.”  I find that people in Korea really go out of their way to push or shove the foreigner.  This was especially prevalent in Busan, where I’ve had ajummas elbow me hard enough (and for no reason) to leave bruises.  I try to be polite and say excuse me in various forms before moving past someone.  Often people will stand still completely oblivious to the fact that anyone is trying to get by.  I hate being shoved out of the way just as much as I hate having to push. P.S. Special shout out to everyone glued to their phone while walking up or down flights of stairs.  You’re the real efficiency heroes. #3 The Horking and Spitting

I live on top of a hill tucked away beside the army base in Seoul.  I didn’t think that my only opportunity for sweet repose would be from 2 AM – 4:30 AM.  In Korea, walls are thin and at all hours of the day and night I can hear horking and snorting and coughing and spitting.  It wakes me up at home.  It creeps me out when it happens in the street.  There have been a couple of instances where the guy hasn’t been watching and I’ve actually been caught with an errant loogie.  Walking the streets of Korea is not for the faint of heart!

Photographer: hannah cauhepe #2 Respect is Reserved

I’ve noticed that in Korea, while the elderly are certainly not taken care of as well as they should be, there is a real sense of duty when it comes to showing respect in public.  Respect is reserved, but don’t skip to thinking it’s deserved.  You’re only due your common decency if you’re superior in age to the person dishing it.  Then, there’s no real reason for you to thank the person (or even say please). Elders have no respect for the younger generation.  They don’t even show appreciation when younger people go out of their way to help.  Respect is an expectation.  Common decency isn’t so common.

Photographer: George Becker # 1 Korean Logic If you work for a company in Korea, you may have experienced something called the “Korean surprise!”  Plenty of my colleagues have arrived at work only to find out that there’s an essential presentation about which they were never told.  It’s parents day!  Open class!  Graduation picture day!  The Ministry of Education is here!  You owe 30 report cards as of yesterday!  Oh, you didn’t know?  You must have been told.  You are wrong.  Please understand our unique situation. Photographer: Saya Kimura The unique situation is sadly that there’s not just a lack of communication, there’s a lack of logic.  When working with companies in Korea, I’ve found that they put one foot in front of the other.  They focus on individual puzzle pieces rather than seeing the whole picture.  Korean logic is my #1 pet peeve about living in Korea.  Let’s hope I haven’t inherited it over the past 3 years of living in this country which has afforded me so  much! Are you an expat in Korea or anywhere else on the globe?  Do you agree or disagree?  What are your favourite parts of living in another country?  Stay tuned for all the wonderful things I’ll miss about living in Korea!

The post Peace Out Seoulmates: 15 Things I Hate About Korea appeared first on The Toronto Seoulcialite.

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Busan Traditional Market Festival

Tue, 2017-11-21 18:16
Busan Traditional Market Festival

2017 Traditional Market Festival

(2017 ChungmuDong  Saebyeok Haean Golmok Traditional Market Festival)

In Korea, in all cities you can find at least one Traditional Market which is called Shijang시장 in Korean. You can find almost all the things you need in daily life, such as fruits, vegetables, cloths, accessories, etc. They are also a popular attraction for tourists who visit Korea, to see Korean traditional shops, souvenirs and get familiar with the atmosphere of a Korean traditional market. These markets are also so popular for having cheap items as well as variety of things based on your taste. Some of these markets are well known for some special items such as fish market, cloths market, etc.

One of the most famous traditional markets in Korea is Jagalchi market in Busan. The famous fish and seafood market which is located in the Nampo Dong district in Busan. Jagalchi market is very well known among tourists as well as locals and people do daily shopping, eating at the restaurants and also enjoy watching all those creatures taken from the sea!

But out of those who know Jagalchi well, how many know that there are actually many small traditional markets near Jagalchi? Yes, it is quite interesting that there are some hidden small but crowded markets near that area. The Saebyeok Traditional Market (새벽 시장) and Haean Traditional Market (해안 시장) are two of them, which are located in Nampo dong, very close to Jagalchi market.

In these two traditional markets, you can find sea food, as well as fruits, vegetables, plants, even sleepers! But what makes these two markets more important is the festival that is held every year there. Every year a festival called “Traditional Market Festival” is held at Saebyeok Traditional Market (새벽 시장) and Haean Traditional Market (해안 시장). I had the chance to participate this festival this year and cover the news as a reporter of the festival.

The festival this year was held on Friday and Saturday, November 4th and 5th. Some contents of the festival were same on both days and some were different. You could see little shops were selling their products like fish, seafood or even street food, besides some tables with special services such as nurses who offers medical emergency or some others who were doing some traditional treatment. On the other side of the market, there also table for some fun activities such as making postcards and handicrafts or fortune telling! There you could make your own fish with your style or choose a sentence in Korean and the artist woman made you a lovely postcard. All for free!

As an official part of the festival, there was a small stage which celebrated another year of Traditional Market Festival. The festival on Friday started with a marching band performance and followed up by the festival mayor speech, as well as some other staff; followed by the very fun part of the festival which was the performers who sang traditional songs that had the older men and women dancing in the street. Traditional Korean music is something I personally really enjoy. I feel so happy when I see older people enjoying themselves and are so excited to see a performance that they start dancing and clapping. One part of Korean culture that I love is that older people actually have their own style of fun and they start dancing just by hearing their generation’s song being performed.

You could also win a fish! A raw fish to take with you and cook at home. That’s quite interesting! To get that, you just needed to collect 3 stamps from all around the markets.

This is not a big festival in Busan but you really should visit. It is held every year by Busan City at Saebyeok and Haean Traditional Market in Nampo dong. Don’t miss it next year!

2017 Photos Below

Pusanweb Photo Flashback of Chagalchi Festival 2001


 

 

How to Say ‘Maybe’ in Korean

Tue, 2017-11-21 09:00

Yes is  네 (ne)  and no is 아니요 (aniyo), but do you know how to say ‘maybe’ in Korean yet? If your answer to this just so happens to be ‘maybe’, or perhaps even ‘no’, then this is the lesson for YOU!

Today you’ll learn the ways of how to say ‘maybe’ in Korean, and whatever using that word can bring about for you. Just maybe this is the word to jumpstart your Korean language learning journey. Get your notebook and pen ready, and let’s get going!

 

*Ready to learn Korean yet? Click here to learn about our 90 Day Korean learning program!

 

‘Maybe’ in Korean

Although there are several different ways to imply the meaning of ‘maybe’, there are three main words to use to describe it directly and generally. The first word to use is 아마 (ama), the second word to use is 아마도 (amado), and the third word to use is 어쩌면 (eojjeomyeon), all of which are interchangeable with each other.

If you want to use the word ‘maybe’ with the meaning of ‘by any chance’ (as in “can you maybe help me with this?) then using the Korean equivalent of 혹시 (hokshi) is the way to go. In turn, if you’re using the word ‘maybe’ with the connotation of ‘I wouldn’t know’ or leaning towards the negative (as in “Maybe that’s the answer, maybe it isn’t”) then you should say 글쎄요 (geulsseyo).

 

A word of caution about Romanization

While it is possible for you to study the words in this article simply by reading their romanized versions, it will come in handy for you to be able to read Hangeul if you ever wish to come to Korea. Hangeul is the Korean alphabet, and not difficult to learn. In fact, you can learn it in just 90 minutes.

After you’ve familiarized yourself with Hangeul, life in Korea will suddenly seem so much easier and the country won’t appear so foreign for you. So, if you’re serious about learning Korean, why not learn Hangeul today?

 

Sample Sentences Standard:

아마 내일 다시 비가 올거에요. (Ama naeil dashi biga olgeoeyo.)

Maybe it will rain again tomorrow.

 

아마도 여섯시까지 일을 다 마무리할 수 있을 거예요. (Amado yeoseossikkaji ireul da mamurihal su isseul goyeyo.)

Maybe I can finish all of my work by 6.

 

Informal:

혹시 그 파티에 같이 갈래? (Hokshi geu patie kachi gallae?)

By any chance, wanna go to that party together?

 

어쩌면 그가 한 말이 모두 사실일지도 몰라. (Eojjeomyeon geuga han mari modu sasiriljido molla.)

Maybe everything he said was true.

 

글쎄, 그 약속이 아직 확실한지 모르겠네. (Geulsse, geu yaksoki ajik hwakshilhanji moreugettne.)

I wouldn’t know, that appointment hasn’t been finalized yet.

 

Maybe, just maybe, you now know how to say ‘maybe’ in Korean? We’d love for you to show us your mad skills! What word would you like to learn next? Let us know in the comments below and maybe your choice will be our next article!

 

*Want more Korean phrases? Go to our Korean Phrases Page for a complete list!

Photo Credit: BigStockPhoto

The post How to Say ‘Maybe’ in Korean appeared first on 90 Day Korean.

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Ang Traje de Boda sa Ukay-ukay PART 5

Mon, 2017-11-20 00:07
  PART 5: Ang Bangkay   Hindi ako makapaniwala sa aking nabasa. “Paano nangyari iyon?” Muli kong tinignan ang newspaper clipping na naglalaman ng mga pangalan at larawan ng apat na kasamang nasawi ni Celeste sa malagim na aksidente dalawang … Continue reading →

Seoul Food: New Burgers @ The Workshop & Hidden Cellar (HBC)

Sat, 2017-11-18 17:49

The Workshop & Hidden Cellar (Itaewon/ HBC)

If you’ve been paying attention to the HBC/ Itaewon group or the Restaurant Buzz Seoul page on Facebook you’ll already know that the Workshop and Hidden Cellar in the Haebangchon area of Itaewon has been busy.  With the renovations finished, a new brunch menu, drink specials, and live music several nights a week I thought it was impossible for the team to dream up anything else.  How wrong I was!  Fast for a couple of days, hit the gym, open up that 2nd stomach, then do what we did: taste the entire new burger menu at The Workshop or Hidden Cellar in one night.

The Workshop & Hidden Cellar – New Burger Menu

When I saw that the new menu at the Workshop was primarily burgers I was actually a little disappointed.  Everyone in Seoul seems to be doing “craft” or “artisanal” burgers in Itaewon especially.  I feel like it must be really hard to get burgers right in Korea as they’ve not been very impressive thus far.  I wasn’t sure what to expect when I went to test out Royale with Cheese (KRW 11, 000), The Saffa (KRW 12, 000), Federale (KRW 11, 000), and the Gorgonzola Burger (12,000).

The burgers on the new menu at the Workshop in Haebangchon have a few things in common.   They’re all homemade, incredibly messy (perfect fry dip), well crafted, and are great value.  They’re full of high quality ingredients, too – like fresh buns from Le Chien Blanc and the Workshop/ Hidden Cellar’s 200 g homemade burger patty.  Scroll down for intimate details on each burger personality!

The Burger Patty @ The Workshop & Hidden Cellar

Each burger is 200 g and is 70% ground chuck and 30% brisket.  This seems to be the optimal burger to bun to topping ratio.  They cook their burgers medium-well to err on the safe side due to the recent McDonald’s fiasco.   When I get a burger, I don’t want the toppings to overwhelm the essence of the dish.  The heart and soul of a hamburger is the burger patty itself.  If you’re only providing a 125 g – 150 g burger patty I’ll still feel like I need to order a 2nd burger to be satisfied.  I’ve had burgers at a popular spot with a brand new location in Hannam and just felt cheated by the wicked-tasting (and wickedly small) burger.

For KRW 11,000 or KRW 12, 000 you get your massive, loaded burger with a reasonable side of fries (ignore the KRW 3,000 on the menu –  they say it’s not worth the charge).  The value at the Workshop/ Hidden Cellar is excellent, eh?   Not only are they a great size, each patty is batched to match the flavour palette of the 4 burgers on offer.  1, 000, 000 points to Gryffindor – er… The Workshop & Hidden Cellar.

Burger #1 @ The Workshop/ Hidden Cellar: Royal with Cheese

The Royale with Cheese is a cheeky little nod to Pulp Fiction.  It’s topped with crispy bacon, sharp cheddar, muenster cheese(KRW 11,000 – served with French fries) , tomato, lettuce, onion rings, and the Workshop’s secret spicy mayo sauce.  The night we visited to taste test the burgers they had a new cook on the grill.  He rocked the big picture of each burger, but smaller elements could use some attention moving forward.  I like the idea of the onion ring, but next time it should have less coating and should be fried longer.  This is already a fan favourite because it’s such a fatty Kathy burger.  The cheesy couple hugs the burger with that special spicy mayo.  This is the kind of burger you want to eat before heading out on a night where you know there will be shots.

Burger #2 @ The Workshop/ Hidden Cellar: The Saffa

While there are plenty of South African people in Korea, Saffa food isn’t exactly plentiful.  In the summer, there are braais a-plenty, but if you’re craving a bunny chow, boerewors, or potjiekos, you’re hitting up Braai Republic (Itaewon or Pyeontaek).  The Workshop/ Hidden Cellar have teamed up with Braai Republic on The Saffa burger (KRW 11,000 – served with French fries).  This 200 g beef patty is topped with biltong from Braai Republic, seasoned sour cream, caramelized onions, tomato, lettuce, and a base on the bun of mayo and dijon mustard. 

The biltong adds an amazing gamey taste and saltiness to the burger which is balanced by the sour cream.  The bun is nice and soft.  I could see some people wanting their bun toasted, but I loved squishing the whole burger and letting the drippings make a mess all over my fries.  It’s not pretty to eat, but damn does it ever taste good.  While I appreciated every burger on the menu, I would suggest giving this one a shot as it’s different from anything else you’ll find in Seoul.

Burger #3 @ The Workshop/ Hidden Cellar: Federale

Federale (KRW 11,000 – served with French fries) comes topped with caramelized onions, bacon, lettuce, tomato, guacamole, and secret sauce.  This burger, while fantastic, was probably my least favourite.  Due to the guacamole completely sans cilantro but full of zingy onion it left me a bit underwhelmed.  If I had had a little more oomph to the guac I’d have been thrilled with the bacon/ guacamole pairing. 

With this burger I could taste the cracked black pepper a lot more.  I was prompted to ask whether each burger patty is made to match the toppings.  Turns out the Workshop/ Hidden Cellar actually does pay attention to that awesome customization.  If you typically go for the Mexi-burger at your local, give Federale a try.

Burger #4 @ The Workshop/ Hidden Cellar: Gorgonzola Burger

The Gorgonzola Burger (KRW 11,000 – served with French fries) is one for the foodies.  My dining companion wasn’t quite sure what to make of the Gorgonzola burger – a 200 g beef patty with bleu cheese, homemade tomato jam, onions, tomato, lettuce, and sauce.  When I read the ingredients I honestly wasn’t quite sure what to make of it either.  I mean, gorgonzola tends to be the bold flavour that steals the show.  Toss some roasted garlic buds on a burger with gorgonzola and I’m in heaven.  With this burger you practically get your money’s worth in the gorgonzola alone.  There are giant chunks of it all over this rich, luxurious burger.

Tomato jam had no place mingling with bleu cheese – or did it?  If you’re a die-hard gorgonzola fan, don’t shy away just because you see tomato jam.  It was actually ridiculously refreshing to have both bold flavours caressing the beef.  While it was a little sweet for my taste, the jam recipe (and the entire menu in general) is a work in progress – it is a Workshop, right?

I’m always looking for something new when it comes to burger toppings, so for me it’d be a real toss up between The Saffa and the Gorgonzola Burger.  Hungover, I’ll want to throw a fried egg on Royale with Cheese and call it a day.  I’m always pretty hesitant to recommend a burger, especially a burger in Seoul, but I can honestly recommend those at the Workshop/ Hidden Cellar.  The passion that Reza puts into his food is starting to make me feel like The Workshop & Hidden Cellar might be the new locale for restaurant tastes rather than pub grub.  It’s just an exceptional bonus that the drinks are so cheap.

The Vibe @ The Workshop

The Workshop (and Hidden Cellar) are my local haunts for an after work social in Seoul.  They have really reasonably priced drinks and are almost always playing some rugby game or another.  With the over-sized windows and open concept layout I’ll pretty consistently see someone I know there on my walk home.

The Workshop is kind of like Cheers.  The staff are friendly, know the locals, and crack good jokes at your expense if you let ’em.  If you’re looking for fine dining then this ain’t the place.  The menu is surprisingly spectacular.  I still daydream about their deep-friend brie with cranberry sauce.  Is it a great date spot?  Sure – if you want your love life totally on display (I mean, it is still Itaewon!)  Either way it’s a great place to meet other expats in HBC.  Head over to play some darts, catch a game, or go downstairs for live music.

This article was written in unpaid partnership in exchange for honest feedback of the new Menu at The Workshop and Hidden Cellar.  TorontoSeoulcialite.com only features places, products, and services I genuinely adore and would repurchase again and again.  Candidly, I’ve blown enough paycheques at The Workshop to warrant a few free burgs!

The post Seoul Food: New Burgers @ The Workshop & Hidden Cellar (HBC) appeared first on The Toronto Seoulcialite.

Korean Phrases Ep. 54: 금강산도 식후경

Sat, 2017-11-18 03:25

This week's new video is a "Korean Phrases" episode. This series is for learning quick idioms and phrases in Korean. Even if you don't use any of these idioms in this series when speaking, you might find them written in books, or hear someone use them when speaking. So they're useful to know, especially if you're at an intermediate or advanced Korean level.

This week we'll be learning about an idiom that originally comes from China and the Chinese language. But it's still useful to know in Korean.

And today's idiom is: 금강산도 식후경(이다).

Check it out here~

The post Korean Phrases Ep. 54: 금강산도 식후경 appeared first on Learn Korean with GO! Billy Korean.

코스 4-1 | Course 4-1

Thu, 2017-11-16 15:45

Visually stunning and kind of out of the way of my typical Busan life, Course 4-1 was a breath of fresh air and a reminder of just how large a city this is. There’s always more to explore and the 갈맷길 is the best way in my opinion.

Course 4-1 and Course 3-3 overlap at the Namhang Bridge 남항대교 in Yeongdo 영도. Course 3-3 keeps on going underneath the bridge toward Taejongdae 태종대 along the western side of the island. Course 4-1 starts way up on top of the 3-story high bridge with rushing trucks and cars alongside. Fortunately, there’s a firm barrier and a beautiful view of Nampo-dong 남포동and the Yongdusan Tower 용두산 타워 to distract from the traffic noise. The direction is toward Songdo Beach 송도해수욕장 and the new Busan Air Cruise 송도 해상 케이블카 부산에어크루즈.

After crossing the bridge, I finally saw a hint of signage for the Galmaetgil. Definitely bring a map or use an app to find your way. My parents were in town so we decided to get a lift on the Air Cruise (12,000 won one-way for adults; 2,000 won discount for those over a certain age) and it was very exciting. I definitely recommend trying it once. Here’s a great blog for more info.

We took a little break and got some coffee and gelato at the little complex on the other end of the Air Cruise. I ordered some black sesame gelato on a whim and it turned out to be a favorite. My friend told me it’s popular in Japan, but I’d never seen it in Korea. Maybe I don’t go to the right places!

Back on the trail, it was woodsy and occasionally scenic as ocean views popped through the tree branches. I think Course 4-1 is good for active people who like hiking in wooded areas near the ocean. When I go again, I’ll probably bring a sandwich since there were no stores or restaurants beyond the Air Cruise complex. There’s also no bathroom on the trail in the peninsula so make sure to use the facilities before heading off. One good thing is that the trail was well marked! There are a few trails in the area and the trail signs are quite clear (light blue on the mixed trail signs alongside ‘갈맷길’ so we had no issues).

At the end of the peninsula is 두도 Dudo, where you can see some fishermen sitting out on the island. On a clear day, you’d probably be able to see a lot of islands even farther out. When we were there, it was nearing sunset and we had to get out of the woods before it was too late so we moved on pretty quickly. It would be a good spot for lunch if you get out early enough!

Luckily, we got back to civilization in time to hop a city bus to Songdo and then transfer on one going to my neighborhood. There are definitely no direct routes since it’s a huge seafood production facility area. I was just happy to see a bus at all! Since we ran out of time and energy, I’ll have to go back to finish up course 4-1 and I’ll post an update then.


Galmaetgil 365
A year of movement

 

Saying ‘Hello’ to Korean Food, Saying ‘Goodbye’ to Korea (for the Night)

Thu, 2017-11-16 10:53
Saying Hello to Korean Food, Saying ‘Goodbye’ to Korea (for the Night)

As a foreigner here in South Korea, I can sometimes feel like I am in a bubble. Sometimes without my participation in the process, sometimes willingly. At work, I am often left out of discussions about matters that might affect me until the last possible moment, or until the actual matter takes place and I am just kind of thrust into it. Often, at night, either Jen or I will ask the other if it’s time to “say goodbye to Korea,” code for closing the curtains on the outside world and cozying up to our insulated world of two inhabitants. That latter example does not necessarily reflect a poor opinion of Korea, but rather an opinion of the world at large and whether or not it’s sometimes therapeutic to escape it and all its associated bullshit; someday, far from today we might play out a similar scene where one of us asks if it’s time to “say goodbye to Middletown, New Jersey” or “Walla Walla, Washington.” But, I am not holding my breath: houses are too damn expensive in Middletown.

Still, we are in South Korea. Jen has occupied the country for going on about seven years while I am at about five years (if you count the first two attempts in 2005 and 2010). There are things about the country and culture we love, things about it we love less, and things about it we love less than that. Just like in Middletown (great parks, too many strip malls, those damn expensive houses).

One of the things we love about Korea pretty consistently is its food. Sure, the basis for most of the recipes are strikingly similar when you actually make them–soy sauce, sesame oil, sesame seed, gochugaru (red pepper flakes), gochujang (red pepper paste), repeat for the next dish. And yet, years and years on we still crave them. There remains a comfort to them, to these combinations of flavors, paired with things like kimchi, pork, various vegetables, tofu and more. A plethora of side dishes (banchan) to accompany a hearty bowl of stew and hot, sticky rice is one of my world’s least guilty pleasures.

Kimchi jjigae, with tofu and “moksal” pork. Recipe: http://banchancomic.tumblr.com/post/97910719044/kimchijjigae-is-probably-1-comfort-food-koreans

Perhaps some of the reason for this continued love affair, however, is just how rarely we participate in it at home. A look at a sample menu of the week in our household reveals very little in the form of Korean, excepting that most of the ingredients were purchased in Korea. More often will we cook things of Indian, Thai (sort of) or good old “American (whatever that means)” origins. Jen’s school has a complete (usually pretty decent) Korean lunch buffet every day, while I consume gimbap and sweet, sweet Dwaeji Gukbap pretty regularly when dining out. When we get home and want to “say goodbye to Korea,” we often want to say “hello” to a culinary culture far removed from our current location.

But, sometimes, our curtains might be closed to Korea for the night but our stomachs remain open. With the assistance of great resources like the popular Maangchi YouTube channel and less well-known but also helpful Aeri’s Kitchenthe incredibly fun and entertaining Cook Korean! illustrated Korean cookbook by Robin Ha, as well as great local resources like the woman at Geumnyeonsan Market whom I purchased our kimchi jjigae’s kimchi, a delicious, completely homemade Korean meal was on our tables and going into our bellies in about two hours (if you include things like sweating the zucchini and such).

If this was what we ate all day, every day, for decades on decades, I could see the possibility of having very little thought for it other than sustenance. And, for us, there can often be plenty of time between times we choose to make rather than buy our banchan. But, when the mood hits, there’s nothing better than a steaming hot bowl of kimchi jjigae between my hands as the temperature drops. And when something that seems so exotic and impossible to replicate like banchan is complete and consumed with my own hands and mouth, I feel like a Korean Titan with a full, happy gut.

How often do you make your Korean food? What are some of your favorites? Share and make us hungry in the comments.

A delicious Korean meal, all made at home.

RECIPES:

Kimchi jjigae: http://banchancomic.tumblr.com/post/97910719044/kimchijjigae-is-probably-1-comfort-food-koreans

Kongnamul muchim: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NWfhIq_MiiU

Spinach banchan: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P4JgJec4QQI&t=189s

Fried zucchini banchan: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=voVMhqW5Hj8


JPDdoesROK is a former news editor/writer in New Jersey, USA, who served a one-year tour of duty in Dadaepo/Jangnim, Saha-gu, Busan from February 2013 to February 2014. He is now a teacher in Gimhae.

What I REALLY Didn't Like About Teaching English In Korea

Wed, 2017-11-15 17:02

One of the first things that I noticed about teaching in Korea was that there were so many Christians. I mean look at the picture above. That's what the skyline in most Korean cities looks like. What do you see?

Crosses.

There's lots of Christians in Korea

There are sooo many churches and so many brainwashed Christians. According to some numbers they are 30% of the population in Korea.

The two people that I disliked the most while I taught in Korea were my Korean co-teacher in a public school that I taught in and my manager in a hagwon that I worked in. And guess what they both had in common?

They were Christians. Dogmatic Christians.

I mean if you can mind your own business and not talk like we are all part of your same group AND realize that your beliefs are based on your environment and not some "truth" then maybe I could respect you.

But these people are so brainwashed and in denial of the fact that it is a religion. In conversations with my co-teacher I remember saying, "I am not religious", her saying "neither am I" and then going on about "god" or "god's truth" or some other B.S.

How stupid can you be?

I remember receiving letters from that manager in a hagwon that we should all join god for such and such activity to pray for something or other.

Duh.

Did you not realize that not everyone thinks like you? 

There's lots of smoking in Korea

Smoking is the worst habit you could have because not only is it bad for you it's bad for everyone else around you. I really detest cigarette smoke and in Korea people smoke all over the place: public or private it doesn't matter.

In fact a popular place to smoke in Korea is the bathroom. So when you need to use a public bathroom don't be surprised if someone is sitting in the stall smoking a cigarette.

This drove me nuts especially when I was staying in the jimjiban between jobs. Everyone smokes in the bathroom. It's like it's the culturally accepted smoking area. They even do it in some restaurants like above which is actually in China, but it's the same in Korea.

They'll just light up and smoke.

There's tons of Kimchi in Korea

Kimchi and Korea go hand in hand. You'll see it often as it pretty much comes with any Korean dish, hear about it and smell it pretty much everywhere. I don't mind a little bit of kimchi if it's not too fishy. They do add fish sauce to a lot of it.

That Christian co-teacher I worked with also had a bad case of "kimchi breath". I had to sit next to her too during office hours.

Yuck.

The worst smell that I actually remember is the combination of kimchi and soju (Korean alcoholic drink). You'll find that smell pretty much any night of the week on the subway.

Then I lived in a house in Changwon, while I taught in that public school. It was a small studio apartment with a toilet that used to emit the most horrid stench from the sewer. Guess what it smelled like? Kind of like a normal sewer smell, but just add the kimchi.

So I had to always keep the bathroom door closed.

There's probably going to be things that you don't like about Korea too

That's a fact. It could seem very exciting at first and you may find yourself without any complaints. But give it some time because your first few months in a place will be different from the following months. I am not trying to sound like a downer neither.

It's just life.

You are going to have challenges. You can't choose everything that happens to you, but as they say you can choose how you react to those challenges. 

There's a free course here where you can get the inside scoop on teaching English in Korea. You can get a headstart on teaching in Korea and learn things most people don't know until after they get to Korea - for better or worse. You'll get advice and total insight into teaching abroad.

 ESLinsiderThings You Probably Didn't Know About Teaching English In Asia, But Should Know

How to Say ‘Cool’ in Korean

Tue, 2017-11-14 09:00

In your lifetime, you’ll likely come across a lot of situation where you feel the most appropriate reaction is to think and say it’s ‘cool’. You’re also likely to keep running into similar situations while in Korea – because, let’s face it, tons of things in Korea are cool!

But before you can say that to anyone in Korea, you need to know how to say ‘cool’ in Korean. So just how cool is it that today’s lesson will teach you just that!?

 

*Ready to learn Korean yet? Click here to learn about our 90 Day Korean learning program! ‘Cool’ in Korean

Today you’re learning how to say ‘cool’ in Korean. Depending on what meaning for the word you’re looking for in English, it will have a few options in Korean.

If we are talking about a person, a quality about them, or something they are doing as being ‘cool’, the right word to use is 멋있어요 (meosisseoyo). You can also informally use it just in its basic form, which is 멋있다 (meositta).

If we are talking about thinking that what the person is wearing is ‘cool’, then you’d be better telling them they look 멋져요 (meotjyeoyo). Again, this can also be used informally in its basic form, 멋지다(meotjida).

Sometimes you will also hear the expression 신기해요 (shinkihaeyo) used to describe something being cool, much in a similar way to 멋있어요. However, the more correct meaning of this word is ‘amazing’ or ‘marvelous’.

Now, we all know that ‘cool’ can also be used to describe cool weather. The most common word used is 시원해요 (shiwonhaeyo). This word can also be used to describe one’s mind or feeling, as well as the temperatures of things besides the weather. A word interchangeable with 시원해요 when discussing the weather or one’s mood is 서늘해요 (seoneulhaeyo).

 

A word of caution about Romanization

While it is possible for you to study the words in this article simply by reading their romanized versions, it will come in handy for you to be able to read Hangeul if you ever wish to come to Korea. Hangeul is the Korean alphabet, and not difficult to learn. In fact, you can learn it in just 90 minutes.

After you’ve familiarized yourself with Hangeul, life in Korea will suddenly seem so much easier and the country won’t appear so foreign for you. So, if you’re serious about learning Korean, why not learn Hangeul today?

 

Sample Sentences

Standard:

슈트를 입을때 완전 멋져 보여요. (Syuteureul ibeulddae wanjeon meotjyeo boyeoyo.)

You look cool when you wear a suit.

 

날씨는 오늘 되게 시원하네요. (Nalssineun oneul dwege shiwonhaneyo.)

The weather is very cool today.

 

Informal:

그는 하는 일은 너무 멋있다! (Geuneun haneun ireun neomu meositta!)

The work that person does is so cool!

 

가을때 아침에는 아주 서늘하지? (Gaeulddae achimeneun aju seoneulhaji?)

The mornings during autumn are so cool, aren’t they?

 

Now that you know how to say ‘cool’ in Korean, why don’t you tell us something that’s cool about your life?

 

*Want more Korean phrases? Go to our Korean Phrases Page for a complete list!

 

Photo Credit: BigStockPhoto

The post How to Say ‘Cool’ in Korean appeared first on 90 Day Korean.

Korea This Week: November 6th – 12th

Mon, 2017-11-13 15:38
Reading Together

I came across this piece on how some groups are responding to declining rates of book readership in Korea. One company called Trevari organizes book discussion groups, which readers can join for a fee, and provides a meeting location, mentoring services, and other support when requested.

And many readers seem to be responding:  the company went from 80 members to 1,600 in the two years since its creation. Members note that reading as a shared experience can be more enriching and enjoyable than reading on your own (as a member of an informal reading group I would concur). Given Korea’s collectivist cultural orientation, recasting reading as a social activity strikes this observer as an interesting and potentially fruitful way of getting more people to crack open a book.

A few bottles of wine at the book club meetings never hurts anyone. DIY Nose Lift

For some reason I can’t fathom, I love reading about weird beauty trends, and the lengths some people will go to to alter their appearances. The following piece discusses the practice of women wedging a curved silicon peg inside their nostrils, which pushes the tip of the nose upward. As is the case with many other trends that pop up from time to time around Asia, the aim of this schnozz-lifting device is to create a more “European” look.

The device is available for sale on Chinese websites, and while the article notes that the trend began in Korea, I have yet to meet a Korean woman who has heard of it.

Doctors quoted in the piece recommend against using the pegs, as they have sometimes caused infections, or have been accidentally inhaled and swallowed by some users. Though it is not mentioned, I also wondered about the danger of the peg becoming a sneeze-launched boomerang during cold season.

An image taken from the Chinese website Taobao shows a before-and-after photo of a woman who has apparently jammed silicon pegs into her schnozzola. I think she looks better in the before photo, but what do I know? A Quick Read to Whet the Appetite

Top Chef Season 10 winner Kristen Kish is an American who was adopted from Korea at the age of four months and grew up in rural Michigan. I liked this recent short profile for the glimpse it offers into her complex relationship with her country of birth and its culinary traditions.

The other big takeaway for me was that I desperately want to try her grandmother’s stuffed cabbage.

Inspired by her grandmother’s stuffed cabbage, Kish stuffs hers with sausage and tops it with bacon. Yes, please!

And how was your week?

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My ‘Private Stash:’ The Korea Chronicles, 2005-2012, Part One

Mon, 2017-11-13 15:08

It’s 2 p.m. at Bricks Coffee in Seomyeon, Busan. I have a “Dutch Americano,” which was just dutch-styled coffee extract alongside a mug of hot water. So, coffee. It’s pretty good. Clouds have come in and it looks like rain outside the window of this second floor but no one is carrying an umbrella, not even one “just in case” paranoid person. I think my bicycle is safe.

I’m diving into my “private stash” of writings from my first, second and the time leading into my third time in South Korea. It’s called the Korea Chronicles and its access is not locked so, if you care, if you find it, by all means enjoy. I won’t be offended.

The first flight, November 2005.

Some of the posts are definitely an acquired taste, a taste which I might have lost a while ago. Reading them is like watching yourself psyche himself up to ask out the pretty girl in homeroom, knowing that she would laugh in your face. They’re awkward. Well, for me. To you, they might just read like someone who is naive, a bit raw, a bit self-serving but hopefully at least a bit entertaining.

Here we go:

Two-point-two
(Dec. 22, 2005)

Her hair went one way, her body another
I watched the pool of sweat in the small of her back
continue to grow from the exertion
of a long journey.

My tender ankle kept slowing her down
holding her confident steps over rocks and brambles and dirt
endless fields of ferns, wild blueberries.

“Do you want to go back,” she asked several times,
worry lines in her face for the sweat to run through.
No, I can go on, don’t worry about me.
But, do you want to stop a moment and have a few more berries?

My ankle throbbed. Who would think
2.2 miles could feel as long as this?

Upon the rocks, thousands of feet above everyone,
our own little new world, discovery.
Mountain, sky, cars small enough to wonder if they’re moving or standing still
along the highway
that separates Pennsylvania from New Jersey.

She sat upon the rocks, bit into a peach, staring out.
I took a photo to remember the moment.
It’s all perfect.
But all I could really think about at the time was how the hell
I was going to get back down with an ankle like this?

Looking back at nearly-12-year-old writings makes me understand whenever I hear some performer who claims to never, ever look back at their work. They’re too critical of themselves, they hate how they look, or sound, or they just feel uncomfortable. I get it and I think some of that feeling comes from having a connection not just to what’s on screen, or on stage, or on paper, or on record. It’s also remembering how you felt, or what you were thinking, or something like that. It’s the added layers of emotion that goes with “just the facts.” The emotion is that I was writing a poem about a girl I left in New Jersey so I could go to Korea, a country I was four days away from leaving after just over a month. I racked up about $300 of toll phone calls to call her in the middle of the night, a person who had moved on from me. To be honest, I was using the idea of her to convince me that I had made the wrong decision about coming to Jinju, South Korea and that what I needed to do was get back to New Jersey. So, yeah, I get why some performers say they never look at their old work.

Walking the streets of Jinju, South Korea, November 2005.

But, it’s also good catharsis. It’s also a good opportunity to tighten up some flab on what is ultimately a halfway decent skeleton, such as what I did to the poem above. Feel free to tell me otherwise if the mood moves you.

Here’s another:

Fives
(May 16, 2006)

Five months later, HIM’s “Killing Loneliness” still has power over me, taking me straight back to Korea.

In 2001, I went with other members of the Brookdale Community College forensics (speech and debate, not dead bodies) team to Prague for the 11th annual International Forensics Association tournament. In memory, it was an amazing time and holds many, dare I say for lack of a better word, magical moments in my mind.

I forgot my CDs. Seven days in Prague and no CDs. But, I’d somehow remembered my CD player. Brilliant. Kate Jones and another member of the team gave me free run of the CDs they’d brought. Still being considerably more of a music snob five years ago, I turned my nose up at most of it. But, I was desperate. I liked Bon Jovi (yes, I know, what kind of a musical snob openly expresses interest in Bon Jovi? But, there it is) and I’d taken a shine to a song by Matchbox 20, I can’t remember which. Plus, Orgy was the closest thing available that was remotely metal. They would be “the three.”

The three were played constantly for the next several days, serving as the backdrop soundtrack to my first international journey. Specifically, track five and “Mystery Train,” off Bon Jovi’s Crush album; track two, “Stiches,” I think, and track 10, off Orgy’s Candyass; and track two and several other tracks that have faded from current memory from Matchbox 20’s Yourself or Someone Like You, these were the soundtrack to my Czech Republic excursion, and they still, to this day, reward me with fond, fuzzy, nostalgia-tinged memories of that trip.

(Some of these still do today, 16 years later, FYI. -ed., 2017)I vividly remember sitting in the hallway of the fifth floor of the Hilton Prague, 5am, crying my heavily intoxicated self sober over the assistant coach of the Suffolk Community College team. Or was it Suffolk University? Anyway, I’d taken a liking to her. She seemed fun. Still being a virgin at the time, with very little by way of “experience,” I can’t imagine how green I must have seemed to her and how, things I thought worked, must have been terribly awkward.

I was a pushy person. Still am when it comes to some things. That night, the aforementioned “crying night,” I’d gone out for drinks with her, Jodi was her name, and several of her team members. We were all drunk before we left the hotel, everyone on most of the 12-15 schools there for the tournament practically were, it seemed. Booze was very cheap, even in the hotel. So, we left, trolled through cobblestone streets, past other merrymakers looking for a good time, and off the beaten path to some pizza place, still open at 2am.

I couldn’t read Czech, so I just pointed to the first item on the menu, figuring it must be some kind of basic pizza. It was basic alright. No sauce. Or was sauce, but, no cheese? During this fine meal, while Jodi was in the bathroom, one of her team members started implying that she had a boyfriend back home, someone she was practically engaged to, and to, well, give it a rest.

Being, by this point, six to eight sheets to the wind, I didn’t take it well. I stamped and stomped, a moody little jerk, about 10 paces behind the rest as we made our way back to the hotel. They said goodnight, I said the same. Or, mumbled it is more like it. I made my way upstairs to my room. And only made it as far as that couch.

Later on, once I’d finally got to my room, I found out the others, who’d gone off to a nightclub were still awake, tending to one of the team members who’d been slipped a date rape drug and was presently bawling on the bed. At this point, still drunk, I proceeded into the now world famous (at least, in the Brookdale Community College forensics circle) dictation of my evening with Jodi and her team.

“Bob!”

Yes, that was his name. Last I heard, they did get married and she’s had a child. Good for them.

I smile as I think back to this somewhat absurd and slightly sad tale. I was a wreck that night. The next day, when we all went on our day trip to Austria and ended up stuck in the country because one of our team members didn’t have a return visa back to the CR, I was also a wreck. Tired beyond measure, freaking the hell out because we were out of the Brookdale Bubble of security and on our own in a foreign country.

Afterward, I’d curse myself for not enjoying it as much as I should. But, now, all I have in terms of memories are fond ones. Even for the freak outs. Five years will do that.

Five months will, too. HIM’s “Killing Loneliness” still holds a power over me, taking me straight back to Korea. And, not the Korea where I was smoking two packs of Dunhill’s and Esse’s a day, or pining over a girl who’d moved on, or felt like the strangest stranger in the strangest land. It takes me back to standing outside of Oh Sung Sik English Club, looking over at the high school, setting up a concert for their students. It takes me back to running down the stairs of the school, listening to the school pound K-Pop and thinking, man, they sound like they’re having a great time and vicariously, having a good time myself in the process. It takes me back to singing at the Noraebang with Emily, my director, of going with her and her brother to their parents tombs in Gojae-do, her hometown. It takes me back to my last night, up all night, hanging out with Jason and Madeleine, drinking soju, eating cheap sushi and talking about what’s next. It takes me back to the last, great long walk with Estevez, up and down Hadaedong’s city blocks, talking about also what’s next?

What was next was, within a week of each other, both of us would be bound for other parts of the world. And during that time, my heart pounded double time, my hands always reached for cigarettes, my thoughts always found their way back to Raha, and questions as to whether or not I really did the right thing.

Five months later, HIM’s “Killing Loneliness” still holds power over me, taking me straight back to Korea. That’s not necessarily a bad thing.

Oh Sung Sik’s Director, “Emily,” and a dashing 26-year-old on his first day. Last time I checked, in 2013, this had since become a math school. Because it was 2005 and I didn’t have one of those fancy, expensive iPods that had only been out for four years at that point. I had a wallet of CDs, one of which was HIM’s Dark Light album, which had “Killing Loneliness” on it and which I listened to on repeat often while I was in Jinju in 2005, hence why it gives me nostalgic feels whenever I hear it. That would have been a good detail to have originally written into this post. Anyway, that was fun. I feel awkward with how I wrote some of the things, and some of the things I wrote. I seem so young and like I had a lot of growing still to do. But, even at 38, I’m still growing. The thing that stops people from ever growing is to think they’ve grown enough. I’ll be the first to admit I likely still don’t know shit. But, I know a little more shit today. So, that’s fun. I wonder if Jodi is still married. If she had more kids. I wonder how the other teammates on our forensics team are doing. Our old coach, Dan, is still alive and kicking and playing acoustic guitar on Facebook posts. His hair is a little grayer, my beard is a little grayer. The band HIM is on their “Farewell Tour” this year. I haven’t listened to them in years. But, 11 years later, HIM’s “Killing Loneliness” still holds power over me. That’s not necessarily a bad thing. Birds fly over Jinju Castle, December 2005.

Remembering Jen

Sat, 2017-11-11 22:05
Remembering Jen


 

Jen Sotham was a vibrant part of the Busan community.  She was a vibrant part of any community she encountered.  Jen wrote. Jen sang. Jen danced. Jen filmed.  Jen taught. Jen laughed. Jen spoke from the heart and listened from there as well.  Jen touched so many lives. Jen died this week after a long, amazingly shared battle experience with cancer.  Those of us who knew her already knew that she was awesome.  I don't think we realized how much she was going to teach us (and so many others) after she left.

Whether you're someone who got to know her in person or someone who will get to know her through the online and offline legacy she leaves behind, Jen's life is one worth celebrating. So, lift that glass a little higher, sing that song a little louder, and hug that person a little tighter.... To Jen!

- Jeff from:  lucywalkerfilm
Ineffably beautiful to be holding Jen’s hand & head as she peacefully died last night. Awe and privilege and radiance to witness. Too many too intense thoughts for here. Love and prayers to her wonderful family and friends. Even her doctors and nurses so touched by her and devastated. Gratitude and reverence for her peace and acceptance as she made her transition despite its fearsome challenges. Her grace was shocking even as it was tested to the core. Thanks too to @thewinsomebrown and @claudearp for emergency middle of the night spirits and quotings of Joyce and Hopkins. Worlds of wanwood leafmeal. The Dead. We are working on getting Jen’s TED talk from #tedxvenicebeach uploaded asap for those of you asking about that. And mostly and always and of course just love to my friend and inspiration and collaborator Jen Sotham all the way to her last breath and heartbeat and beyond 


We'd like to maintain an archive of Jen's stuff here.  Please comment or email any links or thoughts.

Jen Online

From Jen vs. Cancer

Creative Works

Social Media

Jen at TEDxVenice Beach


Jen @ Wordz Only #2 (Feb. 20, 2010)


Jen Sotham @ Wordz Only#6 (October 22, 2010)

Busan Vagina Monologues- Because He Liked to Look at it

Jen Sotham at The 2012 Acoustic Showdown


"Logistics" - A Romantic Short Film by Jen Sotham


Jen Sotham - "Logistics" Interview