Author’s note: A few days ago, I had the privilege to meet Mu Jil Seo (무질서), a professional Korean writer, of sorts. The interview is paraphrased, not quoted, as the interview happened without a tape recorder.
Chris In South Korea: It’s a pleasure to meet you, Mu Jil Seo!
Mu Jil Seo: A pleasure to meet you as well. [Settles into chair, picks up his cup of coffee]
CISK: So, I’m told you’re a professional Konglish writer here in Korea?
MJS: It’s a weird title, but yes, I specialize in Konglish.
CISK: And yet, speaking to you now, you sound as though you have perfect English skills…?
MJS: More >
Apple Korea recently announced that Siri, the personal secretary embedded within the company’s newest phone, will not be part of the Korean iPhone 4S. While the phone is coming to Korea next month, Apple officials declined to give an exact date.
“At this point, we’re involved in a number of lawsuits with tech companies. Literally thousands of Korean have joined a class-action lawsuit demanding compensation. Korean courts have not been favorable to our company, and too many companies are making more money off of cases and accessories than we are. You can appreciate this is a hard time to be More >
A 22-year-old Korean girl was found unconscious near Itaewon station late Saturday evening. According to official police reports, she had a confrontation with a number of foreigners, although no Korean could explain the problem to them.
The following picture was found on the woman’s camera:
Although no pictures were taken of her attackers, about 30 other pictures on the camera showed various angles of her face, hair, and coffee.
This reporter worked through his contacts, and found a couple of foreigners who witnessed the attack. The first, who requested More >
Original photo credit: mapsofworld.com
Following South Korea’s campaign to rename the Sea of Japan to the Korean-favored ‘East Sea’, the United States is set to do the same. While the rest of the world may call it the Pacific Ocean, the United States will simply call it the ‘West Sea’. The Atlantic Ocean will be referred as the ‘East Sea’ as well, which may cause some confusion.
The United States Board on Geographical Names (BGN) has ruled that “while the international community has the right to continue using the historical terms ‘Pacific Ocean’ and ‘Atlantic Ocean’, we feel it is our rightMore >
Photo credit: Sarai
“It’s a little embarassing,” says one mother, who asked to remain anonymous. Her 5 year old boy, identified only by his English nickname Speedy, has yet to learn the ‘Korean squat’. While people around the world squat on their toes, Korean squats leave the full foot on the ground, with knees spread out further to maintain balance.
“It’s not the end of the world, but his friends are beginning to make fun of him,” the mother continued. “As soon as one of his schoolmates realized he couldn’t do it, my son got made fun of every time he tried to do it.”
The Korean government More >
A foreigner was arrested Saturday during South Korea’s win over Greece at the World Cup. Samuel Kigens, 26, was held on one charge of indecent clothing. According to Chief Director of Police, Lee Dae Min, he was “not wearing red to a Korean football game.”
An additional charge is pending against Kigens for “not knowing the chants and songs” that everyone was singing around him. Although the chants and rhythms are not taught anywhere in English, it is still expected of all people watching South Korea soccer.
“I don’t know what I did wrong,” Kigens was quoted as saying. “Everyone around me was More >
Photo credit: BuzzPlay
With the rise of the beer market in Korea, several well-known brands of foreign beer will soon be appearing in Korean supermarkets. Pabst Blue Ribbon, Natural Light, and Milwaukee’s Best have began plans to export their beverages to compete with the Korean beers.
A spokesperson for Cass expressed concern. “We’ve been the low-end beer of choice for years, but we’re confident that we’ll continue to be the beverage people choose. We will be upgrading our marketing to prove that we’re the best low-end beer in Korea.” An OB representative declined to comment, citing a needMore >
So says Lee Woo Min, the psychologist behind a study of the locks around N Seoul Tower. A popular tourist destination in Seoul, literally thousands of Korean couples have attached a lock to part of the tower’s fences to ‘lock’ their love in place. Lee’s study, funded by the Ministry for Health, Welfare and Family Affairs, was conducted in an attempt to find out what happened to the couples behind the locks. Although many couples write their initials on the lock itself, it was a daunting task to find More >
It looks like English teachers may have a shot after all. A recent announcement by Immigration offers a number of bonus points for ‘cultural-based activities’ – things that Koreans do that should also be done by foreign residents.
“After a number of calls and e-mails, we’ve decided to offer bonus points for getting a residency-based visa”, an official from Korean Immigration said.
The F-2-S visa offers foreign workers in Korea the chance to become a Korean resident – if you gather enough points. The system offers points for education, income, Korean language ability, and so on. Unfortunately, More >
It sounds like a parents dream: a chain of hagwon deeply interested in everything parents want.
“Of course we’re a school,” Kim Jun Hwa, the founder of English Power Worldwide (EPW) Academy. “EPW was founded on providing exactly what the parents want – nothing more, nothing less. In fact, another meaning of EPW is Everything Parents Want. If they want it, we do it.”
The popular hagwon chain currently has 191 branches open across Korea, with 129 of them across Seoul. “We’ve initiated a plan to have 1,000 branches open by the beginning of 2012. So what if the Mayans think it’s the end of the More >