Dentist Ad

•June 18, 2009 • 1 Comment

A great ad I ran upon in Busan two weeks ago:

 

Smile

Smile

 

 

 

Remember you only get one tooth so choose wisely!

-kimchiking

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The Han River

•June 15, 2009 • Leave a Comment

With the weather starting to heat up a bit we have been spending more time on the weekends bbqing on our roof and hanging out by the Han River.  The Han River runs through the heart of Seoul and the city has bike paths, benches, sitting areas, and parks on both sides of the river.  It really makes for a great place to spend a Sunday picnicking with some wine and snacks.  You just don’t want to fall into this river because it is filthy…

 

Don't fall down buddy!

Don't fall down buddy!

We are also trying to find out where we can ride this:

-kimchi king

Korean Fire Escape

•June 12, 2009 • Leave a Comment

I live on the 13th floor of my apartment building.  We have two elevators and two stairwells, but just in case the inferno engulfing my building is too overwhelming the Koreans have created something ingenious…

 

MacGyver Style

MacGyver Style

That’s right, you have to repel down the building.  I wish the old Korean men and their soju bottles good luck with this.

-kimchiking

The Casino

•June 10, 2009 • 1 Comment

Well I was down to my last dollar and it was Saturday night.  Tuesday was payday, and I really didn’t look forward to eating ramen for the next three days, so like any intelligent young man with good breeding and an excellent education would do I decided to head to the casino.  This way I could ensure that I would get some free drinks while I milking my last few dollars.  I called up my boy Emerson, and  soon we were headed to the Lucky 7 Casino in the Hilton hotel near downtown Seoul.  Emerson, like myself, is a scholar and a gentleman, had an idea.  He headed to the ATM and pulled out 200,000 wan, counted the bills and handed me half the stack.  This was to be a “loan” and I had the intention to leverage my 100,000 into breakfast, lunch, and dinner money for the next three days.  Thus, I headed to the Roulette table.  

Roulette is my game.  I own it.  My parents didn’t give me the middle name, “15 black” for nothing.  Needless to say I sat down in my sports coat with a Texas sized grin and quickly ordered a “Jack and Coke jusayo” from the lovely Korena woman taking beverage orders.  By the time my drink had began to quench my thirst I was 50,000 in the hole.  I told her to get me another, and make it snappy as I threw some baby blue chips onto the 1st third and black bets.  I had moved from the boyIcantwaittohaveasteak mentality to the whythefuckdidIbetblack and howmanyred32scanhitinonesitting mode.  At this point every other word out my mouth was either “Bullshit” or “Fuck.”  By the time my 3rd drink arrived I had lost all of my money and I was pissed.  What had my blood really boiling was the fact that they didn’t even have a buffet at this casino.  Normally I can at least go and eat away my sorrow.  No such luck.  My friend, the gentleman turned debt collector, decided that he would take out another 20,000 and we would play slots.  This would minimize our losses and keep the drinks coming.  I wasn’t speaking at this point, when the drink lady asked me if I would like another I responded with a grunt.  I fed the Social Security paycheck eating machine a 10,000 note and sat down to the fate that surely awaited me; poverty.

My fourth drink came and I had 4 plays left.  At this point I told Emerson I just wanted to go home and start panhandling immediately.  He called me a “pussy” and pulled his lever for the 30th time in the last 10 minutes.  He told me to shut up, and that a gentleman does not leave a casino while he still has money on the table, or in this case the slot machine.  Head hanging low, I pushed the “place bet button” and pulled that godaweful lever.  At this point I was telling Emerson I would most likely have to kill him in a dark alley because there was no way I would repay him his money.  This was his idea.  He held me hostage and made me come.  He promised free drinks.  He told me I would win, and win big at that.  I kept jawing in his ear until he looked up and simply said “dude.”  I followed his gaze to my screen and saw JACKPOT.  I had my money back and more.  The wind was back in my sails.  I had to ask, “Jackpot? Is that a good thing? Did I win it?  Ohh I won it but you didn’t?”  

I cashed out as soon as possible and quickly the tables were turned.  Black 15 was back!

 

All is right in the world

All is right in the world

I paid the man his money, and then reminded Emerson that only “pussy’s” don’t gamble the money they have in their pocket.  This so called friend refused my sagely wisdom, folded the money in half and quickly put it back in his pocket.  

There are worse things than eating ramen for 3 days right?

-kimchiking

Meckju

•June 9, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Meckju means beer in Korean.  My 10 year old student just told me he drinks meckju with his dad and it makes him feel “funny.”  

-kimchiking

Congratulations and Celebrations

•June 7, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Sometimes when we are out on the weekends the lights in the bar or club we happen to be at will dim and the birthday song will come on.  It’s not like the birthday song back in the states, it might be better.  Everyone stops what they are doing and claps and sings while the birthday boy or girl stands up (usually on a table) and dances while the song is going on.  Here is a taste of what it sounds like when Koreans sing it:

 

 

What is funny is that the song is actually taken from this: 

– Kimchi King

A Nuclear Test and a Suicide

•June 7, 2009 • Leave a Comment

It has been a pretty noteworthy last few weeks for South Korea.  

The North Korean’s tested a nuclear weapon just about the time I was waking up on the 25th of May.  While most South Koreans I have talked to don’t try and take anything that their brothers to the North are doing seriously, there are growing rumblings about changing the tune of the type and frequency of their interactions with the North.  This could result in a cutting off of aid, closing economic zones, etc.  That would be an absolute disaster to the already poor and starving masses of the North.  

But, what really has many Koreans angry is how this nuclear test was conducted while the whole nation was in mourning over the death of the past president.  As far as the suicide of Roh Moo-hyun goes, it is difficult to understand as a foreigner.  People were crying in the streets and the news channels were focusing on him around the clock.  To an outsider it looks they are experiencing the shock and grief that many of us felt after 9/11.  This death came as a huge surprise to many of the South Koreans.  They set up memorials to him all around the city… 

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– Kimchi King