Sunday, October 31, 2010

October Update: What's Good in Korea





Mad Pumpkin. Marker on construction paper. 1996. I drew this freshman year of high school (Drawing I).
Perhaps if this pumpkin focused on the positive aspects of life he wouldn't be so angry!

October's been a busy month! I've been juggling four business partners and just as many different projects. I've also been making minor contributions to various open source projects.

It's far too easy to pick out the bad things in our lives and complain about them. For instance, I have many more ideas for the UX Hall of Shame than the UX Hall of Fame. We usually take the good stuff for granted until it's gone, then complain about its disappearance. It's much easier to highlight bad experiences, especially in Korea. So, bucking this trend, here's a run-down of good things that happened to me in October:

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

How to eat Korean food

Han eagerly anticipating some of the best meat in Korea. It comes to the table raw.

I tried to avoid Korean food on my visit to Minnesota because it's so much tastier and less expensive in Korea. However, my mom wanted to get Korean food, so I broke down and took her to Dong Yang Oriental Food. This is the only place in Minnesota that serves Korean dishes on par with Korea herself.

While very delicious and healthful, Korean food is very user-unfriendly. It is no wonder "Have you tried eating X?" is literally translated from Korean as "Do you know how to eat X?" (X를 먹을줄 알아요?) Many Korean dishes should be served with an instruction manual. For example, the first time I ordered Bibimbab I proceeded to eat it incorrectly. Bibimbab is a bowl of rice topped with various seasoned vegetables. There is a special sauce that goes with it, often served on the side. The correct way to eat Bibimbab, or literally "mixed rice," is to add the sauce, and mix everything together before eating.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

What do BBQ sauce, coffee, and CPU's have in common?

Delicious pizza, fresh from the wood-burning oven. Did the sausage really cost $1.50?
The other day, my friend Eddy introduced me to a really tasty family-owned barbecue joint. While enjoying our delicious beef brisket he commented how expensive barbecue cuisine is, considering this style of cooking uses cheaper cuts of meat. He conjectured the price was raised by the lengthy preparation time needed to get the meat so tender. I actually blame Eddy (and all the other regular customers) for the bloated price of my barbecue dinner. Prices are set by what consumers are willing to pay, not the cost of materials/production.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Dragon Flies and Praying Mantises

Can you spot the dragonfly?
Recently I went for a hike up Mount Bukhan, just north of Seoul. While pausing for a rest, I noticed this dragon fly hiding in plain sight. This stirred some memories of a few notable insects from my childhood:

Thursday, August 26, 2010

The Comeback Post

The last time I tried growing my hair out was over ten years ago! My mom and me at the beach.
When a Korean (pop) artist returns after being inactive for a prolonged period, Koreans call it a "comeback" album/concert. Often they remake their artistic style at the same time. I was sure "comeback" was a bit of Konglish because I never really heard it used outside of Korea, where I hear it all the time. However, a Google search indicates that the term "comeback" is indeed used outside of Korea/Asia.

Anyhow, this is my blog's comeback post. I have made some major changes:

Friday, August 6, 2010

Blogging Again!

Taken with my Fuji F100fd digital camera.
Well, this blog has lain fallow for over three years... time for an update! So what's changed since then? The super-short summary:
  • Completed level 3 of Sogang University’s Korean language program
  • Was involuntarily relieved of over $15,000
  • Interviewed and hired at Microsoft Korea
  • Resigned from Microsoft Korea
  • Started working part-time at a college prep academy
  • Found two awesome business partners