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Weekend roundup

Kim Heung-sook asks: "Who Needs New Bills?"

When I first saw the headline, I thought: I AGREE!!! In fact, I don't want or need ANY bills, whether old or new!

I have a dream job now...After a couple of days at work, one of the managers here told me to give him all of my bills, the company would take care of my expenses.

So I say...Who needs new bills!!! Who needs old bills!!!

Her essay is about the new 50,000 won bill. That's about 40 bucks. The next largest bill? 10,000 won. That's about 8 bucks.

* * *

Get a job!

In an LA Times piece trying to guilt California taxpayers and the governor to spend more on higher education in the state, Vincent J. Del Casino Jr. concludes by asking how he should explain spending cuts to his students: "Governor, any good one-liners I might use?"

I've written some speeches for some prominent people over the years, I'll give this one to the governor for free, "Get a job!"

* * *

The next borrowed word? Skinship!

Kwon Ye-mi writes in the Korea Times about Korean words that are now part of the English language. Her list: soju, kimchi, taekwondo, hapkido.

My favorite Korean word: skinship! It is still Konglish at this point, but one day it may grow up to become a word accepted in English.

* * *

That's the way he was!

Walter Cronkite, dead at 92. He retired 28 years ago. A co-worker thinks I'm the grim reaper because I was talking about Cronkite the day before he expired. Well, who knows, with the time difference, it could have happened just as he was passing away.

* * *

Everything I know about Rome could fit on a 3 x 5 index card...

I'm pretty sure that I had heard about Rome by the time I had turned 15...

According to the Korea Times, a 15-year-old has just written a book about Rome.

* * *

Speaking of teen achievements

An America teen just sailed around the world alone.

I'm reminded of the quote (I think by George Stigler) about Lindburg's solo flight across the Atlantic: Impressive. But it would have been even more so had he done it as part of a committee.

* * *

Korean Twitter

Not that I can do much with it now...

anyway, here's the site.

* * *

Breaking Food laws taken seriously

After Samdoo Food was found to have been putting industrial ethanol in their products we didn't just get a press release from PR regretting the error. According to the Korea Herald: "The chief executive of Samdoo Food was arrested and the head of Jeil Food is under investigation by its Criminal Investigation Office, officials said."

American trade reps have complained in the past about Koreans being tough on American food coming into the country. If the Korean government could arrest American farmers I'm sure they'd let more American products into the country.

Of course, it seems that NO ONE checks on the stuff sold on the streets of Seoul...

* * *

Latest Korean drinking custom I've learned

When someone offers to pour you a drink you are supposed to empty your glass before holding the glass for the person.

I won't name any names but one of our administrators/managers is especially good at this. I don't recall her ever saying she has had enough to drink, she quickly and eagerly empties her glass before receiving more...

* * *

Driving Drunks Home Program

Someone mentioned the name but I had already had a few drinks so I don't remember the Korean name.

I think it was Friday night that some Koreans who took me out called for someone to drive them home. The car owner told me that the driver would be there in 10 minutes. About 9 minutes and 45 seconds later a thin Korean man came running to us. Whatever is the Korean word for that program might be a good slogan for tourism...

I've heard about programs where someone else will drive you home and that you have to go get your car later, but the first time I've heard about calling drivers to drive YOUR car home...

It cost 20,000 won, which I guess is about 16 or 17 bucks.

Cheaper than a taxi considering the distance my buddies had to go.

* * *

I guess they were women...

Two rather shapely checks hitting the punching bag outside an arcade. After the story about the transsexual model I can only assume they were chicks. They didn't just hit the bag once, they went at it a few rounds.

One had a two-handed slam that would have done damage to any normal man...

I stood by watching, wishing I could take a photo...

* * *


I was out until late this morning. I got to see sunrise in the land of the morning calm...

The crowd that I saw at midnight was definitely different from the one I saw at 6 a.m.

I should have taken a shower last night, I'm sure my room and clothes all smell like cigarette smoke...

Went out swing dancing where there was no smoking, then hit the bars in Itaewon to increase the chances I'll get cancer from second-hand smoke.

Reminds of an apocryphal story from a friend:

Korean Doctor: You really have to quit smoking
American patient: But I don't smoke.
Korean Doctor: Then you need to leave Korea.

* * *

I'll have more to say about dancing swing, probably after I go again tonight...


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