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MMPK March 25th Dinner Meet-up Registration Open!

3 hours 24 min ago

Spring is here and we are ready to get out into the fresh air and enjoy some of that crisp air and fresh Makgeolli!

We have been visiting a lot of upscale and expensive restaurants of late, and we would like to get back to our roots and visit a more traditional makgeolli bar. We will be visiting the new trendy park in Hongdae/Sincheon area to have some old school Makgeolli and Pajeon next to the lovely green space.

This should be a fairly inexpensive meeting, with very traditional fare and a good variety of basic makgeollies.


If you want to get lively with us then send us an email to  ^^

Makgeolli Mamas & Papas
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5 Secrets of the NIK Collection

15 hours 3 min ago

Years ago the NIK collection was one of the leading plugins for lightroom and it was competing with the likes of ON1 and other plugins. The NIK collection was and still is my go-to plugin for creative ideas and attempts to make a boring image better. The sad part is that since Google purchased the NIK collection, not a lot has been done with it. By not a lot, I mean outside of making it free, they have not updated a single thing.

However, this is not such a bad thing as the plugin is well made and while an update would be welcomed, not quite needed at this point. This should not put you off from downloading it and adding it to your lightroom arsenal. It can help in a pinch and could make the difference between a boring photo and one that really has some pop. Before we get into the secrets there are a few things that you should know about the collection.

What NIK is NOT

I recently saw a discussion about the NIK collection recently and I realized that there are a lot of misconceptions about the collection. Some people thought that it was similar to lightroom (it is not) and others thought that it was a glorified set of crappy filters (it is much more than that). What you should be thinking is that the NIK COLLECTION is a set of tools to help you enhance your photos. They came out before lightroom and even photoshop could produce decent HDR and they added a lot more versatility when it came to editing black and white images. However, it is not the be all and end all if you are thinking that you can save some money by just using the NIK collection.

What NIK is NOW

The NIK collection is made up of 7 different plugins that work from both Lightroom and Photoshop. Each of the 7 plugins have a drastically different use, but the main thing that you should take away from this is that they only enhance your photo. By that I mean that the heavy lifting of sharpening and other basic adjustments should be done to the image either before or after. As of March 25th 2016, google made the entire collection free. This is good news for many of you who are looking for a decent HDR or noise reduction plugin.


Secret #1 Fake Fall

One of the little known filters inside of color Efex Pro 4 is “Indian Summer” Great filter but misleading name. It sounds like a warming filter from Instagram but it most certainly is not. What Indian Summer does is change the colour of the leaves to fake autumn foliage. With a slight adjustment you can change the season instantly. While it may not be 100% perfect it’s main goal is to help in those times where you need the leaves to pop. However, if you have the time you can turn green leave read or yellow. Do make use of the control points (see the image above) as it will turn pine tree the same colour as the rest of the trees and that that will give away the effect. Use the control point to remove the effect on the unwanted areas.


 Secret #2 Tilt Shift Miniature Effect

Analog Efex 2 is something of an enigma. What I believe was an attempt at making a instagram-like retro camera emulator turned out to be something more robust when they updated it. Once you have opened the plugin, click on the camera that you are using and it will bring up a menu with all of the effects in it. Click on Bokeh and then look on the left and you will see a circle and a square with dotted lines. Click that one and it will apply the tilt-shift effect. You can tweak it a bit but just don’t go too crazy. You want to make it as believable as possible.

Secret #3 Realistic HDR

HDR has a bad reputation for making your eyes bleed unicorn poo and rightfully so. Many of my images do make people want to vomit rainbows. However, NIKs HDR Efex Pro  actually is capable of making genuine realistic HDR images without the crazy halos and weird dark spots that other HDR editors make. It takes a little fine tuning but the key is in your tone mapping. If you stay towards the realistic setting when it comes to the HDR effect, try to keep the depth around normal. Also note that the structure slider works a lot better than lightroom’s clarity slider.

Secret #4 The Detail Extractor

Again jumping to Color Efex Pro 4, the detail extract does what it say and a bit more. It enhances the detail but also allows you to adjust the color saturation and contrast to give an almost HDR-like effect using a single image. Again this may not be to everyone’s liking but it does appeal to people like myself who are always looking for a bit of pop from their images.

Secret #5 The Structure Slider

As I mentioned before that the structure slider works a lot like the clarity slider inside of Lightroom. However, I find that it works a lot better than Lightroom’s because it actually does what it’s supposed to do and that is add more structure and detail to the image. If you crank up the clarity slider too much it makes your image look post-apocalyptic thanks to the messed up contrast and desaturation. However, the structure slider actually enhances the image. You can find this slider in most of the plugins found in the collection. It really helps bring out the detail in the image.

Well, there you have it. There are many more secrets to learn in this free collection. Now if you are wanting to learn the basics of lightroom check out my tutorial by clicking the button below.

Jason Teale’s Lightroom Tutorials


The post 5 Secrets of the NIK Collection appeared first on The Sajin.


SeoulFood: CraftBros Tap House & Bottle Shop (Apgujeong Bar)

Wed, 2017-03-22 11:35

Finding a spot in Gangnam where you can relax and catch up with a friend can often be overwhelming.  South of the Han there are SO many cafes, restaurants, bars, clubs, lounges, and hofs that making a decision can be infuriating.  If you’re looking for an after-work hangout, CraftBros Bottle & Tap House is a great Apgujeong bar with plenty of options for beer!

The Spot:

With this unassuming facade, one might walk right past this 2-storey chicken and beer place.  Nestled among clothing retailers, high-end designers, cafes, and Korean BBQ places it would be easily overlooked.  The name isn’t evident (it just says Bottle & Tap House), so trying to grab a map for the post wasn’t the easiest.  I’m not even 100% certain this is a CraftBros location (their Facebook page says they’re in Banpo).  I’ve included a map to the location on the card which was given to me last week when we visited.

The rows on rows of beer bottles are impressive (and slightly overwhelming)!  The craft beer bottle shop stocks a variety from across Asia as well as the United States, Russia, and Belgium (Dubbels and Tripels are my favourites).  We decided to go local and try the Gangnam Pale Ale.

The Beer:

The taps are pretty cute at this crisp and clean Apgujeong bar!  The Gangnam Pale Ale was perfectly hoppy, but wasn’t heavy.  I typically venture for less hoppy beers because my stomach feels unsettled after a robust brew.  This one hit the spot and didn’t linger.  I had my standard Dubbel for my second drink and was exactly as expected: rich, smooth, and sweet.

The Food:

We decided to share the double portion of fried chicken.  Excuse the image above.  I was pretty ravenous after the gym and dipped in before snapping!  I liked that there wasn’t any breading on the fried chicken.  It came with honey mustard sauce, coleslaw, and raddish.  This was a pretty standard chimaek spread, but the chicken was tasty and the beers were great.  The double portion of chicken was KRW 12,000 and our beers must have been pretty cheap because even going splitsy we only ended up paying about KRW 10,000 each.  Pretty cheap for an Apgujeong bar!

The Verdict:

While the staff didn’t speak too much English, they tried their best to make us feel welcome and at home.  They even gave us each a set of calendars after dinner!  They are designed by either the owner or one of the staff members (I’m pretty sure).  Although we weren’t stuffed we were pleasantly satiated.  For a cheap and cheerful Apgujeong bar and a great after work environment I’d definitely head back.  The verdict?  Go for the beers and the vibe, stay for the chicken.


656-11 Sinsa-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul

The post SeoulFood: CraftBros Tap House & Bottle Shop (Apgujeong Bar) appeared first on The Toronto Seoulcialite.

The Toronto Socialite
       That Girl Cartier


How to Say ‘Eat’ in Korean

Tue, 2017-03-21 10:00

One of the great things about living in Korea is that you can try all of the various foods that Korea has to offer. From spicy ttokpoki, to ice-cold naengmyeon, there is something that will suit everybody’s taste. One of the most useful words to know in Korean is how to say ‘eat’ in Korean.

This article will teach you how to say ‘eat’ in Korean, so that you can start enjoying all of the country’s awesome food.

Can’t read Korean yet? Click here to learn for free in about 60 minutes.

‘Eat’ in Korean To Eat

Like many of the most common Korean verbs, there are actually two different verbs that mean ‘to eat’ in Korean. One of these is used in normal situations, and the other is used when referring to your elders or seniors. It is important to use these words correctly if you want to be polite in Korea.

먹다 (meokda)

This is the standard verb for ‘to eat’ in Korean. It is used when referring to yourself (I want to eat, I ate, etc.) or when referring to people of the same age or younger than you.

들다 / 드시다 (deulda / deushida)

This is the ‘honorific’ form of the verb ‘to eat’ in Korean. The actual dictionary word is 들다, but it as it is always used with 시, you will often see it as 드시다. It is also easier to remember드시다 if you want to use it correctly, especially as 들다 has 103 other meanings in Korean.

You should use this word when referring to somebody older than you. It is also commonly used when asking questions (Do you want to eat?) or giving commands (Eat this) to people who you don’t know well.

There is actually a third verb for ‘to eat’, which is 잡수시다 (japsushida), but this is used less frequently than 드시다.

  1. Formal

먹습니다 (Meokseumnida)

드십니다 (Deushimnida)

You can use formal language when giving a presentation, making an announcement, or in a job interview. The verb that you should use depends on whether you are talking about yourself, or talking about somebody older than you.


다랑어는 보통 날것으로 먹습니다.

(Darangeoneun botong nalgeoseuro meokseumnida)

Tuna is usually eaten raw.

우리는 설날에 떡국을 끓여 먹습니다.

(urineun seolnale ddeokgukeul ggeulyeo meokseumnida)

We feast on rice cake soup on the Lunar New Year.


  1. Standard

먹어요 (Meokeoyo)

드세요 (Deuseyo)

The standard form of Korean is used when talking to people of a similar age who you are not really close with. If you want to ask a question or ask somebody to do something (or if you are referring to somebody a lot older than you), then you should use the 드세요 form of the verb ‘to eat’, in other situations, use the 먹어요 form of ‘to eat’.


맛있게 드세요

(mashittge deuseyo)

Bon appetite


매운 것은 잘 못 멋어요

(maeun geoseun jal mot meokeoyo)

I can’t eat spicy food well.

  1. Informal


Informal words are used when speaking with people you are very close with, or people who are younger than you. Honorific words such as 들다 (to eat) are not used when speaking informally.


이 음식이 맛이 있는지 한 번 먹어 봐.

(i eumshiki masi ittneunji han beon meokeo bwa)

Try this food and see if you like it.



A word of caution about Romanization

Although all of these examples have Romanization, it is far better to learn the Korean alphabet, known as Hangeul, if you are serious about learning Korean. Hangeul is far simpler than it first appears, and can be learned in less than two hours.


Now that you know how to say ‘eat’ in Korean, go out and enjoy some great Korean food.

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

Learn to read Korean and be having simple conversations, taking taxis and ordering in Korean within a week with our FREE Hangeul Hacks series:

Korean lessons   *  Korean Phrases    *    Korean Vocabulary *   Learn Korean   *    Learn Korean alphabet   *   Learn Korean fast   *  Motivation    *   Study Korean  


Please share, help Korean spread! 



Wish List: Mugs

Tue, 2017-03-21 08:00


It’s not quite spring yet, but you can almost taste it, can’t you? Which means we’re almost into the half of the year when I have to specify — and repeat — and double check one more time that anything I order at a cafe will be delivered hot instead of iced.

While I may do the occasional cold brew at home, I generally take my coffee (and tea) hot all year long, and if there is anything I don’t need more of, it’s mugs. The last time I allowed myself to buy another one to add to the already teeming shelf, it cost me 50,000 won (about $50 US). For a mug. I was that in love with it. The problem is, now I’m afraid to use it. It never goes in the sink with the other dishes, and I only use it when Charlie, little coffee spilling terrorist that he is, is safely down for a nap. No, I’m not kidding.

So instead of buying these, I’m gazing at them longingly and posting them here for your consideration. If you happen to snap one up, leave a comment and let me know how it is in real life.

  1. Milk & Juice Glass from Mokryun; 16,000 KRW
  2. Mug from Hwasoban; 38,000 KRW
  3. Hyun Sang-hwa’s Short Mug from Dining Objet; 38,000 KRW
  4. Yumiko Iihoshi’s ReIRABO Cup M from TWL; 43,000 KRW
  5. Cylinder Wood Mug from Mokryun; 30,000 KRW
  6. Jo Seong-an’s Mug Cup from Soseng; 20,000 KRW
  7. Right Angle Groove Cup from Mokryun; 12,000 KRW

The post Wish List: Mugs appeared first on Follow the River North.

Follow the River North

Freelance writer and editor. American in Seoul. I write about Korean food. I blog about all food. Last year I wrote a monthly column about traveling to different places around the country to explore Korean ingredients and cuisine. This ignited my interest in local foods and cooking, which I blog about regularly now. I also blog restaurant and cafe recommendations, recipes and some background and history about Korean food.

Books & Stuff    Cafés & Shops     Korean Food & Ingredients      Personal     Recipes       Restaurants & Bars

Seoul Dating: How to Get Him to Commit

Tue, 2017-03-21 00:59
Photographer: Jena Postma How to Get Him to Commit

I’ve been seeing tons of click-bait headlines making their way through the travel, expat, and lifestyle communities.  Figured I’d give this one a shot, too.  So sue me, right?  Not quite – read on to see how you too can get him to commit with this one amazing tool.

Photographer: Breaking the Rules

I’ve already gone back on my word by entering into a relationship with a) someone I met through Tinder, and b) on my list of the 7 Worst Guys an Expat Can Date.  If you’ve read Expat Dating Diaries: The Military Man you’ll know that there are some dirty dawgs out there especially in and around Itaewon.  I met my new Co-Pilot at Souva, which has quickly become the latest hot spot for my coupled-up pals.  In the past week and a half (yes – it’s that ridiculously new) we’ve been to at least 7 restaurants together, have watched 4 movies, made dinner twice, and climbed a freaking mountain.  He’s mentioned me to his parents and tonight mine got the Skype update.  I know you’re still wondering how to get him to commit, but I’m sure you’re also wondering if good ol’ Cartier’s going to get boring with a boyfriend.

Photographer: Matthew Kane No More Drama

It wouldn’t be the Seoul expat dating community without a little bit of drama (I know this is what you came for :P).  This wouldn’t be the Expat Dating Diaries without unnecessary drama, right?  Well, shocker!  My new beau went out on dates before he met me!  There are a few women with whom he’s been out who are friends of friends of mine.  One in particular was pretty pissed when he let her down easy (via text – party foul, I know).  After she screamed at me, I told him straight out that if we were going to do this we wouldn’t be with anyone else.  If either of us change our minds down the line that’s fine.  That said, a certain conversation needs to happen if either of us want to start seeing other people.  This leads me to the most important tool you can have in your arsenal if you want to know how to get him to commit.  Time and time again girls lose their minds over men who choose someone else.  How do you get him on the same page?  This one’s simple…

Photographer: The One Amazing Tool

What’s this one elusive tool to use when wanting to know how to get him to commit to you?  COMMUNICATION.  There’s no big secret.  He’s not a f*cking mind-reader.  TALK with your Seoulmate!  Communication is a tool we all have within our big ol’ bag o’ tricks, but when it comes down to it we rarely feel confident enough to share our feelings effectively.  The biggest flaw in my last relationship is that I felt powerless what it came to expressing my wants and needs.  When I tried to initiate a conversation about things which bothered me, he “was bored” and didn’t want to hear it.  In my mind, my last relationship was just a silly little travel romance in the beginning.  Never in a million years did I think he’d skip out on an epic SEA adventure to come live with me in South Korea.  I didn’t tell him what I needed and wanted right from the start.  When he started weaving dreams of a real future beyond Asia, somewhere we might settle down, I scoffed and moved on.  When I started to believe the fantasy, he pulled away.  We weren’t on the same page at all.

Photographer: Thought Catalog Fake News

For someone who “hated social media” as much as he did, he sure checked his instagram likes regularly.  It blew my mind that he thought I was demanding he give up the “opportunity of a lifetime” to come live with me.  It drove me mental that he wrote his younger female travel companion a love letter on Facebook when he took off from Cambodia to come to Korea.  When he left Korea to head home, he shared: “too many people to name.  It’s been emotional.”  I was proud to be with him, yet he tried to hide me.  He was always pleased to be tagged in cool hipster photos at the palace or beachy pics with the lads.  Unfortunately, he refused to acknowledge our life together publicly.  Looking back that should have been a HUGE red flag.  I wanted to shout from the top of every mountain in Korea that I was happy with him, but he couldn’t bring himself to tell his own network he had a girlfriend.  It’s such a night and day difference to have an intelligent, accomplished, handsome gent tell me he’s happy to be with me at the top of a mountain we climbed together.

Photographer: Emma Frances Logan Barker Looking Forward

Maybe this relationship will crash and burn tomorrow.  Maybe it’ll withstand the tests of all the small town (ahem HBC) murmurings.  If you don’t have the exclusivity conversation with your desired partner, then you can’t be angry with him (or her) for continuing to date.  If this person meets someone else with whom they have more in common, you can’t fault them for wanting to pursue a relationship.  You didn’t communicate your desires.  If you’re not getting the answer for which you’ve been searching, then move along.  He’s not going to fall in love with you just because you’ve been hanging around.  It doesn’t matter if you have beer-flavoured nipples.  No matter how much you pretend to love Star Wars, if he doesn’t love what you’re actually into then what kind of foundation are you building?

How to get him to commit?   Talk to him (or her) for f*cks’ sake! Like it? Pin it!

The post Seoul Dating: How to Get Him to Commit appeared first on That Girl Cartier.

Dwaeji Gukbap (돼지국밥): An Obsession

Mon, 2017-03-20 16:27

I just got back from lunch. Working in a new area since the beginning of the month, one of the things I have been most excited about was finding new culinary treats to expand my stomach. As this is an old neighborhood, narrow alleys abound. I have already enjoyed some delicious raw fish (회, pronounced “hwe”), simple, delicious Bibimbap (비빔밥) and spicy, hearty Galbi stew (갈비찜), among others. But, how do I judge whether or not a neighborhood’s restaurant “scene” is up to the task of pleasing my pallette?

With 돼지국밥. Always, with dwaeji gukbap.


To prove this, I am creating this post with exclusively archived photos, to show how obsessive I have been about this very Korean but even more very Busan Metropolitan area dish. No, it’s not because I forgot to bring my camera to lunch.

But first, a little information about dwaeji gukbap (literally translated as “pork, soup, rice”), courtesy Eat in Korea:

Theories abound about the origin of the soup. Some say it was invented during the Korean War when peasants would gather pork bones discarded by the US army and make a meal out of it. Others argue that the soup dates back to the Goryeo dynasty when peasants gifted with pork or dog meat by the nobles were reluctant to waste any part of it.

In addition to the broth, each restaurant might put its own unique spin on the base broth, adding a little green onion, sesame oil and whatnot before serving it to the customer. It’s then up to the customer to decide how much they want to customize. They could go for the standard pork-soup-rice, or other options like 순대 (soondae, or noodle-stuffed blood sausage), 냉장 (naengjang, or offal), or less-traditional choices. One of my favorite gukbap stops, 영진돼지국밥 Youngjin Dwaeji Gukbap, offers a very non-traditional Mandu Dwaeji Gukbap (the regular gukbap with added Korean-style pork dumplings). Also, diners will be served green onions, rice (either in a metal bowl or already within the soup), briney baby shrimp and red pepper paste for seasoning, all to your personal tastes.

The pork bones need to be boiled for a long, long time in order to gain the typical milky-white broth, according to the Eat in Korea article. So, unlike other Korean food stalwarts like kimchi fried rice (김치볶음밥), bibimbap, and gimbap (김밥, or Korean-style maki rolls), which you could easily learn how to make at home, making dwaeji gukbap would be a rather cumbersome, time-consuming task. Not to worry, if you’re in Busan and neighboring cities that comprise the Gyeongsang-do provincial region, as there’s a dwaeji gukbap restaurant on practically every corner (also, to a lesser-extent elsewhere in Korea, will you find soondae gukbap, whereas dwaeji gukbap tends to be a very southeastern South Korean-style dish).


So, what is it about these gukbaps that keeps me falling back on them time and time and time again when looking for a satisfying meal? Perhaps it starts with how and where I discovered the dish.

I’m always looking for an excuse to trot this out again.

It was sometime in 2013 in Jangnim, a non-descript, somewhat industrial, somewhat tired, somewhat old corner of southwestern Saha-gu, where I returned to South Korea that year to teach at a hagwon in nearby Dadaepo. The Busan Metro line 1 extension to Dadaepo Beach was still about four years from completion, so who knows how much more exposure the area will get once that’s open in April of this year. But, I digress, at the time of this story, it was pretty damn unknown, even to some people who had grown up in Busan.

In one of my continuing attempts to break from my fear of the unknown by walking into random restaurants and ordering whatever I thought was the trademark dish of the place (or, whatever 한글 hangeul I could read at the time), I walked into a new restaurant just up the road from the end of the little alley that led to my small apartment building. Their signature dish? Dwaeji Gukbap.

[Fun tangent: I had actually been exposed to dwaeji gukbap once before, in a very small, very tired restaurant in Deokcheon, Busan all the way back in 2010, on the same day all of us EPIK program teachers had been dumped off at our assigned schools. Two other newbies and I were hungry and feeling slightly adventurous, so we walked into the restaurant that was just around the corner from my very small, very terrible school-selected apartment to hopefully get some chow, to be met with a salty older woman and a couple old men who were all hanging out, drinking soju and watching TV. We hand-waved and pointed as best we could through a very awkward exchange until the woman prepared for us three bowls of the soup, to which she included a large bowl of the requisite 부추 (buchu, or chives) for us to add to our individual servings. Not knowing what it was for but knowing and having eaten a number of Korean side dishes (반찬, banchan), I tucked into a hearty portion of the lightly seasoned green onions on their own. The old men laughed, the old woman laughed and then she helpfully and forcefully put some of the buchu into each of our bowls, laughed once more for spice and then went back to the television and alcohol with her buddies. Becoming addicted to the dish in 2013, I ventured out one summer evening to my old haunt of three years before, only to discover that the little restaurant had long since been shuttered, never to serve its fine food to another clueless foreigner again.]

Back in Jangnim, back in 2013, I was becoming hooked on this magical mixture of pork, soup, and rice. It was so simple and yet, depending on how much you doctored it and which restaurant you did the doctoring, so satisfying. I was going two, three, sometimes four times a week.

And then, I discovered soondae gukbap.

The rest, as cliche writers write, is history. It is with no small part of credit that I say dwaeji and soondae gukbap helped me along the way toward being comfortable enough with my poor Korean reading and understanding acumen to continue to try out new restaurants. With the help of dwaeji gukbap and soondae gukbap, I was able to further expand my tastebuds into more than just the approved-for-foreign-audiences items like bibimbap and bulgogi, an expansion that continued today at the first dwaeji gukbap restaurant in this new-to-me neighborhood.

While that place won’t make the list of my favorite gukbap stops, the following will! This is, of course, an ever-expanding list. Feel free to leave comments with your own favorite restaurants, because I’m always looking for more ways to expand my belly! Click on the links of the restaurants for more detailed information about them, including directions.

  • Youngjin Dwaeji Gukbap (영진돼지국밥), located in the KSU/PKNU area in Busan (as well as other locations): As of now, my go-to king of gukbap stops. Flavorful broth that needs very little doctoring, super-meaty soondae and fresh-tasting, thick-cut pork, everything about this place is quality, even the kimchi. Shoutout to my friend Kelly Shin for this valuable recommendation!
  • Gusan Dong Dwaeji Gukbap (구산동돼지국밥), in nearby Gimhae City (accessible via the Busan-Gimhae Lightrail Transit): This long, squat, non-descript restaurant was recommended to me by several folks when I first moved to Gimhae in 2014 and expressed my fondness for all things gukbap. And, they were all correct in calling this the best gukbap in the city. Super meaty, super flavorful, and often super busy. Only the kimchi gets low marks, as it is made with some kind of funky spice that kind of tastes like you’ve blended kimchi with Pine Sol floor cleaner. Bummer. Despite that, this was for a long time (until Youngjin entered the picture) my favorite dwaeji gukbap stop.
  • Hanmat Dwaeji Gukbap (한맛 돼지국밥), located between the Gageum and Dongeui University subway stops on line 2 in Busan: Unlike the current current and former kings, this one was not recommended by anyone but instead found while killing time waiting for a bicycle to be fixed. I appreciated the kitschy, old-school exterior. But, as with everything, it’s what’s inside that counts. And, what’s inside is a delicious rendering of this region’s finest dish.

The Red Dragon Diaries’ Tom Gates, formerly of Busan and now kicking ass back in the U.S., asked me to join him for one of his fun local food videos back in 2014. We ended up on Seomyeon’s famous “gukbap street,” which has about a dozen gukbap restaurants of varying quality and success. The one we ended up at, which isn’t named in the video but which is called Gyeongju Dwaeji Gukbap (경주돼지국밥), hit the spot at the time, but has not since kept pace with what I’d consider the top pigs. But, it’s still a decent meal that would probably go down well for you, as well.



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.

Ginger Scones for Monday Blues

Mon, 2017-03-20 08:00

Monday, Monday. Don’t despair. It means you’re one day closer to the start of the weekend than you were last night.

You know what makes Monday mornings better? Popping some frozen scones you made over the weekend into the oven while you’re in the shower. Scones can hold for two or three days, but they are never as nice as when they are still warm. Luckily, they freeze well, so a big batch made on Sunday can last you the week.

Ginger Scones

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A bit of a quick one this morning. After the scone disappointment at Loisir a couple of weeks back, B asked me to make him scones to atone for the sin of dragging him to afternoon tea. I actually think the scones there just got him thinking about the ones I make. The amazing thing about scones is that once you’ve got them down, you can toss in anything you have in the fridge or pantry and come up with something new every time.

But scones did take me a little time to get down, as did pastry — basically anything that involves cutting in cold butter, which I could never seem to get quite right. My solution may be a bit unorthodox but I will never, ever look back from it: Freeze the butter and take to it with a sturdy cheese grater. It gives you extra time to fumble around with the dough before your butter starts to get too warm and melt. Oh. And when the butter you’re holding in your hands  while grating begins to melt around your warm little fingers, drop it in the bowl of flour and give it a toss before continuing.

Following that route, these scones can be cut and ready to go into the oven (or wrapped and placed in the freezer) inside of 15 minutes. Things I have added to this same base recipe include: grated apple, dried cranberries, fresh blueberries, prunes, rolled oats and, as in this case, ginger. I’m thinking of doing some with strawberries this week, as they are in season.

Ginger Scones

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PrintGinger Scones

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 8 scones


  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup muscovado sugar (white can be subbed)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 cup cold (or frozen) butter
  • 1/2 tablespoon ginger powder
  • 3 tablespoons fresh grated ginger
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup plain yogurt
  • 1 egg plus 1 tablespoon milk for egg wash
  • 2 tablespoons muscovado sugar for topping


  1. Preheat the oven to 180C (355F) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Whisk together the flour, sugar, and baking powder in a large bowl.
  3. Cut in the cold butter with a pastry blender or cheese grater (cheese grater!).
  4. Add the ginger powder, fresh ginger, lemon juice, salt and yogurt. Mix until just combined and let rest for 5-10 minutes.
  5. Turn the mixture out onto a lightly floured surface and gently pat into a large rectangle about 2 1/2 inches thick. Cut the rectangle into eight pieces. Wrap those you want to save in plastic wrap and put them in the freezer. Place the rest on the baking sheet. Brush them with the egg wash and sprinkle them with the extra sugar. Bake the scones for about 15 minutes or until they are golden brown on both the top and bottom. Let the scones cool a little before topping them with butter and jam or whipped cream and fresh berries and serving while they are still warm.


The post Ginger Scones for Monday Blues appeared first on Follow the River North.

When to Work for Free and When to NOT

Sun, 2017-03-19 19:27

The debate about whether to work for free or not as been going on for some time and I don’t think that it will ever go away. The reason being is that there are always people wanting top quality work for nothing and (oddly enough) there are people who are willing to work for nothing. Recently, I saw Gary Vaynerchuk talk about how people were getting too fancy and wanting to charge money for services when they should be giving it away. I scratched my head and thought “Easy enough to say when you run a multi-million dollar company” but there is some truth to what he says. It’s obvious he knows what he is talking but for photographers working for free can sometimes also mean being taken advantage of.


When to Work for Free

When it comes to clients and projects, I want a win-win situation. A win for the clients side is getting the images or the work that they want for free. A win for me is getting something worthwhile in return for the images. It is as simple as that. However, there are times when the “something worthwhile” means nothing but that is my choice.

You may have seen a few of my cinemagraphs around for different companies. Some of those companies I reached out to on my own and gave them one of my cinemagraphs. You may think that I lost my mind but I did this because I really liked their product and I wanted to give a little back. Typically, I’ve done this for some startups that I felt needed a boost or that I just really really liked their product. The image and the creative direction was my own and it was a gift to them without any strings attached. If they use the cinemagraph, great. If they don’t that’s fine too.

The thing here is that there is no assumption of quality on the part of the company as they are not paying you or contracting you to do anything. This goes a long way to building a relationship with the company and will lead to future jobs as you initiated the first contact and then can negotiate a price for a “real” project later. If they have used your image then they probably have seen how well it does and now they will possibly  want to work with you for a particular campaign.

So, my advice is to find products that you love and reach out to them. Make a proposal that is a win-win and see where it goes. Again, you make the proposal and accept the costs if their are any because afterall you are in control. If it is for free then so be it, but it will be a project that you are happy to be a part of. This proposal also needs to be strategic as Gary Vaynerchuk says in another video. If you are looking to expand your client base then look towards the companies that will have a big impact or following.

Free doesn’t Always Mean “Free”

Exploring this idea of win-win a little further, you can opt for something else in return for your services. What you are looking at is value. You will often see this with companies who want to get their products seen on instagram or facebook. Over the years, I have been contacted by a number of companies to review their products. In exchange, I got to keep the product. In my mind getting a new product for simply reviewing it is a win-win.

Working towards a win-win is always optimal because you’re NOT obligated to provide anybody anything simply because they like your work. I like Range Rovers but they are not going to simply give me one because I liked their ad on facebook. However, if you are working with a smaller company and providing them with quality images and helping them get their name out, one of their products or something else should be on the bargaining table if they don’t have a proper budget. This is not asking for a handout but rather an exchange. If they can’t provide cold hard cash then they should provide something in it’s place.

If you are reaching out to a larger company then make sure that they can get your name out there. If you are giving away your best work then it needs to be in a place where people will see it and know who your are and have a way of contacting you.


When NOT to Work for Free

Every so often I get an email telling me how much they like my work and that they have this great project that they want to use my work for. They usually tell me how successful or amazing their project or thing is and that my images or cinemagraphs would be perfect for it. Sadly, there is just no budget to actually pay anything. They are hoping that I would  love this project as much as they do and give them my images for free. Now, the issues here are: I have never heard of this company before, there is an assumption of quality and they are primarily in control of the situation.

They are reaching out to me to license an image and they are the ones benefiting from it in the end and they are looking for the best quality that they can find. This is different than what we talked about before because your were the one making the offer, you know, like and use their product, and you are giving them whatever you made. Here they are acting like a paying client but offering nothing in return.

This is a prime example of a win-lose situation. How many times have you watched a video or used an app and thought who took that picture? Unless you are in a place like me where you know many of the photographers and know their work, you probably don’t care. You see the pic and think “that’s nice” and move on. I feel that 99% the world works like this unless they take an active role in promoting your work. However, few places actually do this. It is a false statement as they just want your image and nothing more to do with you. They want to make it seem like they will get you more work but instead they are just taking your work for free. It is the “don’t call me, I’ll call you” of the photography world.

The fact of the matter is that if you don’t know or even like the company, they do not deserve your work for free or even a discount. If they are willing to give something of value in return then that is fine. Sadly, most companies, agencies and individuals who have no budget are looking simply to get your work fast and easy.

What to Say

When you get offers for free, negotiate. Think about the win-win and ask what else they have to offer and be clear about it because they know what they are doing. I had a friend work for shoes as a bonus. The company was into sports and wanted particular shots of their team. They couldn’t quite meet his price but compensated with brand new shoes and merchandise. While this may not pay the bills it does save money in some ways. The deal is that you have to negotiate. Be upfront and say “Thank you for reaching out. I am looking for a win-win here. What else can you offer to cover the difference?”

My favourite is when you get the “we have a large list of followers” or “It’ll be great exposure” offer to set them up with an affiliate code. Tell them that they can purchase the product at full price and with the affiliate code they can earn back their budget. This way the “exposure” or “followers” that are so great turn into clients when the current client is held to their word. If the client truly believes in their followers then they will go for it. In my experience they typically don’t because you called their bluff.

The bottomline is that it is ok to work for free, if it serves you as much as the client. IF you want to give your work for free it should be on your terms because you want to do so. However, if you have no idea what the project is or the project is of no value to you then don’t do it.

If an agency or company contacts you and wants you to support them, it has to be win-win. This also goes for those low offers of $50 for a product that you typically sell for $500 to $1000.  As Chase Jarvis and other have said “a $50 client will never become a $5000 client” It is ok if they can’t pay that is fine but they have to come your way in other ways. Make sure that they have a way compensate for the difference.


The post When to Work for Free and When to NOT appeared first on The Sajin.

“Gaming rooms” are pretty popular in South Korea. Typically, you...

Sun, 2017-03-19 11:30

“Gaming rooms” are pretty popular in South Korea. Typically, you get to rent a gaming console and play video games for a set amount of time. Lately, I’ve been seeing VR “rooms” pop up, like VRPLUS (브이알플러스). I went recently and paid 12,000₩ per person for 100 minutes of playing VR games. 

It’s a fun experience and I totally recommend it, whether you’re going alone or with someone else. You get to walk around and play various games in rotation. 


Hi, I'm Stacy. I'm from Portland, Oregon, USA, and am currently living in Busan, South Korea. Check me out on: Tumblr, Twitter, Instagram, Lastfm, and Flickr.


How to Shoot Cherry Blossoms

Sun, 2017-03-19 10:42
How to Shoot Cherry Blossoms


This is one of my favourite times of the year. I know it sounds strange and I should really be talking about “grinding out photos” [insert macho voice] of nightclubs or showing the gritty side of photography by shooting a plate of spaghetti or a stop sign in black and white. This is a time of year that I really do enjoy getting and and just shooting nature. There is a sense of renewal this time of year and I love it. The hardest thing is to try and capture this period of renewal to show other people the beauty.

The blossoms are tricky things to shoot because to our eyes everything is beautiful and evenly lit. However, once you click the shutter everything can change. The reason is that often your camera will expose the image differently depending on how it is metering for the light. Blossoms sometimes trick your camera’s meter because they simply scatter the light or diffuse it in a way that is hard for your camera to automatically meter for. So do be aware of this when shooting the blossoms.

Open Up and Isolate

Roy Cruz offered some great tips in his latest newsletter about zooming in tight to catch some of the details and widening your aperture to get some background separation. This is a great technique and is really popular when it comes to shooting blossoms. The reason is that the isolated subject really focuses your attention on one particular part of the image. With so many blossoms in the frame your brain gets a little overwhelmed. By isolating the subject you can really direct the viewer to that one part of the image that you want to highlight. It also helps keep unwanted details out of focus and could possibly create the illusion of more blossoms.

To achieve this effect I would suggest shooting Aperture Priority and setting it to f/2.8 or wider. You will see a lot of photographers using a 70-200mm lens for this as it allows them to get a bit more reach to focus on blossoms that are a little farther away. However, do be aware that this technique is extremely overused and can lack interest. So take some time and compose your shot well.

Lines and Colour

Adding basic rules of composition will help any photo but here is makes your images have a lot more impact. As I said before, the shallow depth of field shots where all you can see is one blossom up close are used a lot. So it is time to think about other ways to show the beauty of this season. Incorporating leading lines is a great way to add more visual appeal to your image. It takes the reader through the frame and lets them explore a bit of the beauty that you created. These lines can be created using paths or fences but even try to use the branches themselves. Don’t just go for the obvious.

Colour is also what makes this season great. Thus, you should use it to your advantage. This is a season erupting with soft pastel colours and vibrant pops of purple. People are expecting the colour as we welcome the change from the muted drab palette of winter. So try using different filters and effects. Afterall, you are creating art here and not a boring documentary, so feel free to make the colours pop a little bit more than usual.

Subjects and Foreground

Having a portfolio completely full of similar-looking flowers can turn off almost  anyone. It also lacks a story and a sense of place. Cherry blossoms are a symbol of spring a rebirth in many parts of Asia, particularly Korea and Japan. Not to mention places like Vancouver and Washington, D.C. are also famous for their blossoms. Purely focussing on the flowers loses the sense of place and if you are wanting to show the blossoms in a magazine, you really should let the viewer know where you took the images from. However, it doesn’t have to shout “This is Korea!” but rather at least hint that this is somewhere in Asia or proceed to tell a story. This is where your subject can be important.

Adding something of interest in the foreground of your image and letting the blossoms take a backseat is another way to create more interest in the image. This time of  year you can see blossoms everywhere. This is about the ways that you can use them to accent your image. Not to mention, if you are shooting travel pieces and want to show off the location the blossoms should take a backseat in order to give more focus on the location and subject.


Be a Tourist

With all these techniques and ideas circulating around your cranium, now is the time to get out there! Steve Robinson and I commented recently about collecting so many tips and tricks from ebooks and videos but rarely using them. Here is a great way to finally make use out of that great content that you purchased from places like 5DayDeal. The basic thing that I also hear is from a lot of photographers these days is “I have to get out more” and that goes for me to.

The best way is to do some research and join some groups. For example the Dynamic Busan page has a great post on where to go in Busan to capture the blossoms. Check around your area to see what is available. Perhaps a trip to Kyoto or Busan might not be in the cards for your but do check and see what is going on in your area. Guaranteed there will be a few groups going to shoot, so join there and see what you come up with!

The post How to Shoot Cherry Blossoms appeared first on The Sajin.

One of my comfort foods is Korean kimchi bokkeumbap (김치볶음밥,...

Sat, 2017-03-18 11:30

One of my comfort foods is Korean kimchi bokkeumbap (김치볶음밥, kimchi fried rice). Once you have all the ingredients, it’s easy to make.


  • 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
  • 1 cup kimchi, chopped
  • 3 cups cooked rice
  • ¼ cup kimchi juice
  • ¼ cup water
  • 3 tablespoons gochujang (hot pepper paste)
  • 3 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 1 green onion, chopped
  • 1 sheet of kim (dried seaweed), roasted and shredded
  • 1 tablespoon roasted sesame seeds


1. Heat up a pan. Add the vegetable oil and cook the chopped kimchi for 1 minute.

2. Add rice, kimchi juice, water, and gochujang. Stir together and cook for 7 minutes.

3. Add sesame oil and remove from heat.

4. Top with chopped green onion, roasted kim and sesame seeds. Ready to serve.

Note: I usually add an egg on top, cooked sunny-side up.

Korean Test Practice with Billy [Ep. 2] – Intermediate Korean (Listening Practice)

Sat, 2017-03-18 01:54

Are you preparing for the TOPIK test, a government Korean test, or a Korean test at school? Then let me help you prepare with a brand new series focused on Korean test questions and explanations.

This episode will cover an example of a listening question. More episodes to come soon!

The post Korean Test Practice with Billy [Ep. 2] – Intermediate Korean (Listening Practice) appeared first on Learn Korean with GO! Billy Korean.




Friday, March 17 Korean News Update

Fri, 2017-03-17 16:45

Former President Park Geun-hye says she will honor prosecutors’ request to answer questions regarding the scandal that removed her from office, animal rights activists have accused Park of animal neglect for leaving 9 dogs in the presidential residence, a court has temporarily banned the use of a state-authored history textbook, & nearly half of South Korean women don’t return to their jobs after taking childcare leave. All that & more on the latest Korean News Update podcast episode from Korea FM.

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Donghae Line: Busan’s Newest Way to Ride

Fri, 2017-03-17 14:21
Donghae Line: Busan’s Newest Way to Ride

Perhaps I have an outsized interest in the Busan metro system.

To call it a “subway” would be somewhat incorrect, although that’s what I usually say. Even for the Busan-Gimhae Lightrail Transit, which is entirely aboveground. To call it “sub”way is to imply it is “sub,” or underground. Even some parts of the Busan Transportation Corporation system could not technically be called subways, since they are above ground. On the orange line, line 1, the train goes aboveground from 125 at Dongnae Station, through 130 at Guseo, then back underground for its remainder. Likewise, the green line, line 2, goes aboveground as it approaches neighboring Yangsan in the north. Line 4, the blue line, also spends some of its time above ground, and even ground level. One could not consider a ground level train as a subway, could they?

Perhaps I have an outsized interest in the Busan metro system.

Thus, it was with great interest that I first heard about the “Donghae” line over a year ago. Living in Gimhae at the time, I did not often spy the ongoing construction of the additional rails, which currently begin at Bujeon Station (the train station, not to be confused with the subway line. See, here I can call it the “subway” since it’s underground) and head east, cutting through parts of line 3, the brown line, line 1 and line 2, then head north into Gijang County, to parts that are as yet untouched by Busan’s 32-year-old metro system. The line officially opened for service at the end of 2016.

The Donghae Line (which, confusingly, is depicted in a shade of blue very similar to line 4, which debuted in 2011) is actually part of what was known as the greater Donghae-Nambu train line, which has connected Busan to Pohang for almost 100 years. The whole thing is rather confusing, since the current Donghae Line that serves Busan finishes north in Ilgwang, home to one of the city’s less widely known beaches. That is the part we’re going to concern ourselves with today.

The Donghae Line is not technically part of the Busan Metro system, as it’s not operated by the Busan Transportation Corporation. So, instead of the 101, 102, 103 of that system’s stations, the Donghae Line operates under Korail’s K110, K111 system. Is this useful information? I’m not sure after writing the above paragraph, but use it if you can. It shows up in all informational materials as being part of the whole transit system, like the Busan-Gimhae Lightrail Transit, so we might as well just call it as such. Also like the Busan-Gimhae Lightrail Transit, transfers are possible from the Busan Metro. You need to scan out and in to the separate transit ecosystem, however, unlike transfers between metro lines, which do not require an additional scan.

For my maiden voyage on the Donghae Line, I transferred at BEXCO, 205 on line 2, which is presently one of three stations where direct transfers from the metro to Donghae is possible (the other two are at Busan National University of Education, 124 on line 1, and Geoje, 306 on line 3). From there, I followed the easy-to-navigate signage on the walls and floor to a new set of turnstyles that take passengers exclusively to the new BEXCO Donghae station via a pair of long, long airport style moving sidewalks and a long escalator.

As expected, the new station was clean and bright. Nothing super fancy, but all very easy to navigate. What was more impressive was the platform, where copious amounts of light flowed into its partially open-air expanse. Dramatic red metal curved above the train’s tracks, as people waited for their trains to arrive.

And, be prepared to potentially wait. While its DNA might be similar to a metro system, it’s still its own beast. During rush hour, trains will arrive about every 15 minutes. Other times, such as when I went around 3pm, trains come about every half hour. So, be smart and figure out when the trains come and go, just like if you were taking any other regular, non-metro train. Or, chill out and people watch, as I did.

A fun, soft little melody played out as our train came into the station that reminded me of some of the fun little tunes I would hear waiting for trains in Japan. Then, we all hopped aboard what can easily be mistaken for line 5 of the Busan Metro (another line altogether, which is currently scheduled to open in 2021).

Unlike your average train that has rows of seating, the Donghae line’s trains are set up identically to those on the Busan Metro and Busan-Gimhae Lightrail Transit. Like BG Metro, this line is all aboveground (save for Sinhaeundae, which is listed as partially underground and which I have yet to pass through). But, other than that, I think it’s perfectly suitable to lump this in with the five other lines that are presently serving South Korea’s second-largest city.

Busan’s metro connectivity grows.

The train is obviously getting used, as can be seen from the included pictures. Lots of people. Of course, the somewhat sparse train schedule could also be playing a part. But, whether I was standing or sitting, I was very comfortable and the ride was very smooth.

My trip took me to Bujeon, which, as mentioned before, is not the same Bujeon as the subway line. But, you can get from one two the other from the street in minutes. I’m not sure if plans are on the table to connect the two underground, as has been done with Geoje, Busan National University of Education and BEXCO. Plans for additional stops past Ilgwang on the other end are in the works, but as all the subway maps are presently being updated to just include up to Ilgwang, I wouldn’t hold my breath for whenever those are to be completed.

Overall, I enjoyed my brief (about 25 minutes) trip across town on the new Donghae Line. I hope to take a complete trip, from Bujeon to Ilgwang, in the near future and will update accordingly.

So, yes, I guess I do have a bit of an outsized interest in the Busan metro system. At least conceptually. Ultimately, it was just a ride on a train, albeit a comfortable ride. For me, it’s not just about the nuts and bolts of the operation. I never collected trains growing up. I don’t really care about any other metro systems elsewhere.

But, as I have lived in Korea for four years, two of those in Busan and the other two one city over but still served by the same transportation system, the additions of the new lines and stations (such as the six additional stations coming to the end of line 1 in April, which will make accessible by subway a part of the city I lived in when I first arrived in 2013), a very real excitement has existed when something opens up and changes in my current home. Had I visited Busan the first time I was in Korea in 2005, I would have only been served by lines 1 and 2. Now, there are 6, including the Busan-Gimhae Lightrail Transit and the Donghae Line. For me, it represents an evolution, as well as a greater opportunity to explore this still-interesting, curious place called Busan, South Korea.

These are my top albums of 2016 in no particular order. I...

Fri, 2017-03-17 11:30

These are my top albums of 2016 in no particular order. I listened to these albums on repeat, I love them, and they defined this year.

Aesop Rock - The Impossible Kid

Bon Iver - 22, A Million

Tycho - Epoch

Frightened Rabbit - Painting Of A Panic Attack

Chance the Rapper - Coloring Book

Radiohead - A Moon Shaped Pool

Jagwar Ma - Every Now & Then

Kaytranada - 99.9%

Sturgill Simpson - A Sailor’s Guide to Earth

Santigold - 99¢

Also, here are lists of my top albums from 2012, 20132014, and 2015.

Kim Dynasty Family Members Living In US, American Defector’s Children Living In North Korea

Thu, 2017-03-16 14:53

While North Korean leader Kim Jong-un’s brother, Kim Jong-nam, was recently murdered while living outside of the DPRK, he’s not the only Mount Paektu Bloodline member to have made it out of North Korea. Two articles from Anna Fifield, the Washington Post’s Tokyo Bureau Chief, have connected past defections both to & from North Korea to their present day consequences. Last year, Korea FM reporter Chance Dorland spoke with Fifield to learn how the decades old defection of American GI Joe Dresnok to North Korea, & the more recent defection of Kim Jong-un’s aunt to the US, are still being felt today.

Stream the episode online at

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This episode is brought to you by Podcast Assist & its $30 per hour flat rate podcasting voice overs, editing, mastering, transcriptions & even hosting (select a topic, they’ll create & host the podcast). Visit for more information. 

Interview answers, both in written & audio form, have been edited for length & clarity.

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The post Kim Dynasty Family Members Living In US, American Defector’s Children Living In North Korea appeared first on Korea FM.

‘Falling’ Back Into Korea 2009

Thu, 2017-03-16 13:58

This, despite the fact I wasn’t even in Korea in 2009.

But, I was preparing to go back after my first aborted attempt four years before, the first of two attempts that I’ve talked about plenty of times and will probably talk about plenty of times in the future. For now, though, if you’re curious, you can read about it over at this old, dusty claptrap of a blog.

Now, I’m listening to “Power,” a song from Marillion’s 2012 album Sounds That Can’t Be Made. Again, I was planning on going back to Korea, except this time, it would finally stick. Listening to it now, in 2017, sends a shiver through me. Like a scent smelled when you were young that has become as part of the memory as the event itself, “Power” is a time machine back to 2012; “Falling,” back to 2009; or Stream of Passion’s “Deceiver” taking me back to a lonely apartment in Jinju awash in harsh, horrible flourescent light and drowning in cigarette smoke and bad writing in December 2005 (or In Flames’ “Eraser,” which I was listening to while trying to take a shit in a cold, cold elementary school bathroom in Mandeok, Busan, in March 2010. What, TMI?). They are time machines that take me to places that don’t exist anymore.

Sometimes, the places never existed. Now, I’m listening to Deep Forest’s remix of the Youssou N’Dour song “Undecided” which, I think, I was listening to while working part-time at Cherry Grove Farm between being laid off at the newspaper and heading to Busan with EPIK in 2010. But, I was thinking about Korea at the time? I was signing up for programs? I’m not even sure. Or, the song “Misery 24/7” that I associated with all the post-surgery pain I was experiencing after an abnormally-long gallbladder surgery in May 2010, which was the primary reason I’d abandoned that second attempt at Korea. I wasn’t even thinking about Korea, I was thinking about how much pain I was in and whether or not the nurse was going to give me more painkillers! But, I attached them both to my super self-indulgent Korea Chronicles soundtrack, so they remain in ancient “John Dunphy in South Korea” lore, which still gives me those shivers, despite having listened to hundreds of other songs in the past four years I’ve actually lived here.

Fantasy is often more fantastical than reality. But, it’s still fantasy. But, it’s still fun. I enjoy popping back in from time to time. But, not too often; it wouldn’t be as special if I did.

What are some of your time machine songs? Where do they take you? Do they still give you the same shivers they did when they attached themselves to your memories, making them as important as the memories themselves?

Jeju Spring Travel (March-April) | Weather, Best Attractions & Suggested Itineraries

Wed, 2017-03-15 19:26
If you are planning to travel to Jeju Island in the spring season, make sure you read our ultimate spring travel guide before you go! Spring in Jeju Best time to visit While the spring season in Jeju Island spans from mid-March to May in general, the peak season lasts from mid-March until early April, which … Continue reading Jeju Spring Travel (March-April) | Weather, Best Attractions & Suggested Itineraries
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Kelly Family Press Release on the ‘BBC Dad’ Viral Video

Wed, 2017-03-15 17:53
Kelly Family Press Release on the ‘BBC Dad’ Viral Video

Today, my family and I conducted a select set of interviews, with the BBC for the international audience, with the Wall Street Journal for the American audience, and with the Korean media for the local audience here. Here is our statement on the video incident. Thank you.   Robert E. Kelly


“My family and I would like to thank our many well-wishers. We are just a regular family, and raising two young children can be a lot of work. Because of that, it seems that the video has resonated with parents around the world, and we are flattered at the many gentle sentiments about our children. Thank you. We love them very much, and we are happy that our family blooper brought some laughter to so many.

We would also like to thank the British Broadcasting Corporation for its gentle and tactful treatment of the video. We are grateful for their professionalism in handling the exposure of our young children. We especially thank James Menendez, the announcer in the clip, for his kindness during the interview itself.

To the media, we would like to apologize for our reticence. We have been deluged with requests since Friday. We were unsure how to respond, and as the attention accelerated, we became genuinely unnerved. We had no idea how to handle this. We therefore decided to return to the BBC for a follow-up interview for the international audience, to speak with the Wall Street Journal for the US domestic audience, and to hold today’s press conference for the Korean audience. We apologize to the many outlets that seem to find this dissatisfactory. We are doing the best we can. Some have asked for interviews in our home. At this point, we are unready for that. We are hoping to return to normality in the next few days. Perhaps next week if there is still interest.

Finally, we would like to clear up a few of the rumors and controversies around the video:

– Yes, the woman in the video is my wife, Jung-A Kim/김정아, not my nanny.

– The first child to enter is our daughter, Marion Yena Kelly/켈리 매리언 예나, age 4.

– The second is our son, James Yousup Kelly/켈리 제임스 유섭, age 9 months.

– No, Jung-A did not use too much force in removing the children from the room. It is quite apparent from the video that she is frantically trying to salvage the professionalism of the interview. The children were not injured. When Marion speaks in the clip, she says, in Korean, ‘why Mom?’ She is responding in surprise, because we normally do not treat out children this way. Marion’s willingness to comfortably traipse into my home office illustrates her usual ease with her parents.

– No, I was not shoving Marion out of the way. I was trying to slide her behind my chair where there are children’s toys and books, in hopes she would play with them for a few moments until the interview ended.

– Yes, I was wearing pants. I choose not to stand, because I was trying to salvage the interview.

– No, this was not staged.

– Yes, the flat surface to my left was in fact a covered-up air-mattress. Our children like to play and jump on it.

– No, the map was not hung there as a prop. It was a gift and genuinely helps me learn world place names in Korean.

– No, we did not fight about the blooper afterward, nor punish our children. Rather, we were mortified. We assumed that no television network would ever call me again to speak.

– We have no comment on the many social analyses of the video. We see this simply as a very public family blooper, nothing more.”

Filed under: Media

Robert E Kelly
Assistant Professor
Department of Political Science & Diplomacy
Pusan National University



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