Tag Archive | City Hall

[드라마] ‘최고의 사랑’ 최고다!

I started watching 최고의 사랑 – the day after its pilot episode. I was contemplating whether to watch it or not, but I ended up downloading and watching it right after it aired its pilot. 😀

I watched it without subs (I’m not excited, am I?). My Korean is still not good enough to understand everything. In fact I often get lost in their conversations. But I’m happy with the amount of things I can now understand. I think it is more accurate to gauge my comprehension by watching an unsubbed drama than while watching a subbed one.

The opening got me right away – an old MV of  K-pop group 국보소녀. The song 두근두근 is so cute too! It made me smile from ear to ear – I don’t even know why.

Cha Seung-Won is great – as always. But I just don’t like that he is sporting his Jo Guk (City Hall) look in this drama. I think Cha Seung-Won is handsomest in that look, but somewhow  him sporting the Jo Guk look and acting as the crazy Dokko Jin somehow disturbs me a bit when watching it. I have to remind myself every now and then that he is not Jo Guk – he is Dokko Jin! Good thing he is about to change his look in Episode 5! Yey! I don’t have to endure a Dokko-Jin-that-looks-exactly-like-Jo-Guk being sweet and romantic towards Ae Jung. Jo Guk can only be sweet, manly and romantic to Shin Mi Rae (City Hall)

Gong Hyo-Jin is excellent too. This is the first time I’m watching her. Pasta has been on my to-watch list since last year, but I just haven’t gotten a chance to watch it. Although Cha Seung-Won is one of my favorite actors, Gong Hyo-Jin is the reason why I can watch this drama. Aside from the fact that I have a problem watching Kim Sun-Ah‘s previous partners on another drama with another partner, I also have a problem watching other actresses. I have a ‘high’ standard when it comes to actresses (read: high standards = Kim Sun-Ah acting standard). My usual litanies when watching a drama are  either “Kim Sun-Ah can do better than that!” or “It would have been better if it was Kim Sun-Ah on that role!”. Fortunately Gong Hyo-Jin is such a great actress and she plays her role as Ae-Jung very well. Of course, sometimes I think it would have been nice if Kim Sun-Ah’s playing Ae Jung. But I think Gong Hyo-Jin fits the role perfectly! So I don’t mind if it’s not Kim Sun-Ah. 🙂 (I just don’t know if I’ll feel the same way when romance between Ae-Jung and Dokko Jin starts budding :|).

At first I was just planning to continue watching Greatest Love without subs. I don’t want to bother waiting for the subs anymore and I just want to watch it for the sake of watching it. But after watching Episode 1 and browsing Episodes 2 and 3, I think it’s so good that I don’t want to miss out a lot from the dialogues. So from now on I’ll watch it with subs – even if that would mean more waiting.


Yesterday was a weird day in our Korean class… I don’t know why but it’s just… uhhmm… weird. It seems like everyone doesn’t have energy. Our 선생님 looks a bit tired (probably because of the upcoming Korean speech contest/Korean short play contest) that she’s organizing. And us, the students, were all kinda feeling stressed trying to memorize our speeches/play lines and trying to fit in practice schedules on our already full (and brimming) schedule – not to mention finals is just around the corner.

Plus the fact that the lesson discussed yesterday was pretty difficult. Okay, not really ‘that’ difficult, but very confusing. Our lesson yesterday was still quoted speech. A/V -다고 했어요 – 자고 했어요 V -(으)라고 했어요. I don’t know. It doesn’t really look like very difficult, but it seems like all our brains were all so drained out yesterday.

The only thing that keeps me going is the ~말라고… simply because of this scene from City Hall:

지금 갖고 있는 추억만으로도 아파 죽겠는데

왜 자꾸 보태는데…

왜 왜 아무것도 하지말라고 나한테


I’m so late for my Korean class now… I hope there will be a better atmosphere today…

Push It! Homework 1

Got my graded homework in Push It! today. Got a pretty good grade. 🙂

Final grade: 98/100 (A)

This is a very good first piece of homework! I am confident that you are knowledgeable in the area of what we consider ‘basic/elementary Korean’ necessary for progressing through the Push It! course. Your spelling was almost flawless except for the one mistake in Part C, but that may have also been a typing error! I’m sure that you’ll check more carefully next time 🙂

I wasn’t even expecting it to be that high. Oh well, this is a homework and not an exam. I used the dictionary a lot so this is really not something to be very proud of. Plus this is fairly easy since it’s just a review of Elementary Korean. Nonetheless, it did made my day. My homeworks in our university class this semester is always full of red marks from my 선생님 (My homeworks in class were usually crammed to the last minute before submission and I usually write them while in a bus… I did dedicate a decent amount of time to fulfill the Push It! homework because I want to proceed to their Wang class next time – and for that to happen, I must get a good final grade).

This is not the first time I was ‘commended’ for my spelling. Something I’ve earned after years of continuous reading, perhaps. But what I really would love to happen is for people to start commending me that my pronunciation is almost flawless. I wonder when will that ever happen?

One Filipino professor who is teaching basic Korean in our university once said, “Since you have already decided to learn the language, why not learn the pronunciation properly as well?”. And I do agree with him. I think pronunciation is really important. Especially for Korean language. A slight mispronunciation can, most of the time, lead to miscommunication – or worst a fit of laughter. During my speech rehearsal I’ve mispronounced a few words and my coach would tell me the meaning of what I have said instead (like when I pronounced 별명 nickname she said it sounded like some kind of an eel).

The best thing about this Push It! class is the feedback! Something that self-learners doesn’t usually get. I already listed all the new words that appeared on the homework. And here are some of the mistakes and comments.

  • 우리 집 사람 – I didn’t know that it means “my wife”. We were supposed to make possession contractions for an A – B dialogue. The first sentence was A: 우리 집사람은 요리 제일 잘 하지 and then B: 당연하지. ___ 비빔밥은 제일 맛있더라! I was torn between 그 and 그녀. Maybe it’s 그녀 because it was referring to someone who cooked well. But thinking the ‘English way’ (using the He pronoun when gender is unknown), I answer 그의. I’m glad I made a mistake though. Because if not I wouldn’t have know that 집 사람 refers to the wife.
  • 삼촌 – I misspelled it to 삼존. Definitely not a typo since ㅊ and ㅈ are very far from each other on the keyboard – but yes, I wasn’t very careful. I basically just have to copy it from a previous sentence, but I still made a mistake. The good thing, I guess from now on I won’t be confused with the proper spelling of 삼촌.
  • 우리 vs 제/내 – I already know the Korean’s preference over 우리 with a lot of things (우리 집, 우리 나라 etc). Our homework has actually a lot of pronouns in them. I usually try to avoid pronouns in Korean. I know it’s barely used (am I right?) especially on formal situation (when you refer to other people by their name or title instead of ‘you’). So it was a good practice for pronouns. But I was confused as to when do we really use 우리 and when shall we use 내 or 제. The funny thing is, a few hours after submitting my homework, I’ve gone across and article in our university Korean book about the same topic. The homework question:  A: 가지마. __ 집으로 와. B: 니 집에 지금 가면 어떻게? 내일 보자. I wanted to really use 우리, but I thought, since person B used 니 maybe it’s time to use 내. I was also thinking, maybe person A lives alone. I answered 내. It was not wrong (and actually there were no comments left on that item), but on the article that I’ve read, Koreans will always use 우리 집 even if they are living alone. On another item, I wrote the sentence: 제 동생은 너무 귀여워요. Again, it was not marked incorrect, but a comment was written. Using 우리 동생 is better. And I think it was specifically because the sentence is in a positive form. Maybe if I say that my little brother/sister is lazy I could probably use 제 – 제 동생은 너무 게으러워요.

Now it makes me think of this scene from City Hall:

When Jo Guk said, “우리 미래 내꺼야!” (미래 is 김선아’s name) we translated it as “My Mi-Rae is mine.”, but we later changed it to “Our Mi-Rae is mine.” before releasing the episode. Would it be better translated in English as “My Mi-Rae is mine” or simply “Mi-Rae is mine” rather than “Our Mi-Rae is mine”. I opted for “Our Mi-Rae is mine” at that time because I find it more.. ummm.. beautiful. I think it doesn’t matter to those who have knowledge about Korean language, but now I’m thinking if this could be confusing to English speakers.

  • 시다 – I wrote 선생님이 김치는 맵다고 말했어요. Again, it was not incorrect, but it is better said as 선생님이 김치는 맵다고 말하셨어요. I’ve known about this formal stuff but only started learning it thoroughly a few weeks ago. No, I’m not making an excuse. I just think I need more time (and practice!) to get used to it. I should be more careful next time.
  • 것을, 걸, 거 – I wrote 영화를 보는 거 재일 좋아해요. Again, not marked as incorrect, but 것을 was written as a suggestion for a better way of writing it (?). When I first learned it on our classroom, our 선생님 said that Koreans like shortening words, thus 거 is more commonly used by Koreans. Since then, I had this preference over 거 and just casually use it anywhere. It slipped my mind that I’m writing. So I think 것을 is better used if you are writing formally and 거 is more on when speaking.

I’m glad I was able to practice writing sentences through our homework. Too bad I’m gonna miss the next lesson. But I’ll make sure to study Paper 2 well – it would be after the speech contest anyway, so I guess I’ll have more time to spare.

If anyone comes across this blog entry, please feel free to leave comments, especially about the things I’ve written about Korean language. I’m not sure about most of them. 감사합니다. 🙂

The perks of learning Korean

Were there ‘little happy times’ when you feel so ecstatic because you are able to finally understand something… just a teeny-bitsy-something… in Korean? Maybe a few lines from a drama, or your 선생님’s instructions, or phrases that your Korean friend is saying, or a single-sentence-long query from a Korean stranger? Or you’ve managed to successfully convey a message to someone? And that someone understood you and responded to you? I had one of those ‘little happy times’ today.

This morning I saw a photo of Kim Sun-Ah.

고사 지내는 사진 2011.02.08

I was so excited! We missed Suna Unnie soooo much. The last time we saw her was from her 2009 drama City Hall. After that, she was just seen on a few TV interviews, few(er) CFs, some fancafe events and a couple of overseas fanmeetings. And during that time, news about possible projects (mostly movies) come and go – literally (like there was a time when a news about a possible movie with Jung Joon-Ho was posted in the internet and just after a few minutes it was put down from the web). And I miss her badly.

Anyway, we saw this photo and another one. Our source said she got it from twitter. So I quickly went to twitter to check who posted it. And I found a Korean posted tweeted the photo. Curious and obsessed with details (!), I wanted to know when was this photo taken. So I tried asking the Korean if he/she knows when was this photo taken. I tried, but I wasn’t sure if I’m saying it correctly. Later, he/she replied that this photo was taken yesterday afternoon – and asked me if I am a fan of Kim Sun-Ah.

꺄~! I’m just so glad I know some Korean. If not, I probably won’t be able to find out when was this photo taken. I’m happy, but I do wish that my Korean would go further than that – soon! 🙂

30 Day Kdrama Challenge

I got this from tumbler. It was supposed to be a 30 day challenge, but I just want to try answering them now. I haven’t seen a lot of dramas yet, but I think this is kinda fun. 재미있는 것 같아요.

Day 01: Your Favorite Kdrama

My Name Is Kim Sam Soon

Day 02: Your Favorite Male Lead Character

Hmm… Jo Guk (City Hall) is the most romantic guy. Gi-Chan (Bad Couple) is the ideal-almost-perfect guy. Joo-Won (Secret Garden) is the most three-dimensional male character I have encountered so far.

Day 03: Your Favorite Female Lead Character

Kim Sam-Soon (My Name Is Kim Sam Soon) nonetheless!

Day 04: Your Favorite Male Third Wheel Character

Probably Kang Shi-Wan (When It’s At Night)

Day 05: Your Favorite Female Third Wheel Character

I usually hate all of them… but Yoon-Seul (Secret Garden) is loveable. Wait, is she a third wheel character? Maybe Wang Joo-Hyun (When It’s At Night).

Day 06: Your Favorite Song from a Kdrama OST

Aww, this is really difficult. I’ll name a few… please? Inside My Heart (My Name Is Kim Sam Soon) is just so special. 늦은 시각 (What’s Up Fox?) is a long-time favorite. 불안한 사랑 (City Hall) is such a beautiful one. 사랑하고 사랑합니다 (City Hall) is something that I can’t stop listening to. There are still more songs that I truly like… And I love Noh Young-Shim (musical director) so much!

Day 07: Your Favorite Line/s by a Male Lead Character

이런건 남자가 하게 해야죠.차문 열어줄때까지 타지도 말고, 손수건 안깔아주면 어디 앉지도 말고,숟가락 젓가락 안놔주면 밥도먹지말고. 한번도 안그래봤죠? 앞으론 그래봐요.여잔 스스로 귀하게 여길줄도 알아야해요. – Jo Guk (City Hall)

Day 08: Your Favorite Line/s by a Female Lead Character

Uhm… I can’t decide yet. But it’s gonna be either from Sam-Soon (My Name Is Kim Sam Soon) or Mi-Rae (City Hall). I’m still in the process of compiling them here.

Day 09: Your Favorite Line/s by a Male Third Wheel

Hmm… probably when Shi-Wan confessed to Cho-Hee (When It’s At Night), but I haven’t memorized the line.

Day 10: Your Favorite Line/s by a Female Third Wheel

Ah! I love a line from Yoon-Seul, but I have to check it again. I didn’t memorize it either.

Day 11; Your Favorite Dialogue

A lot? City Hall dialogues perhaps.

Day 12: Your Favorite Story

My Name Is Kim Sam Soon no less. (City Hall would be my favorite love story though)

Day 13: Your Favorite “I Love You”

None yet. But I have a favorite proposal (City Hall)! And favorite confession (My Name Is Kim Sam Soon)

Day 14: Your Favorite Kiss

Shin Mi-Rae and Jo Guk’s kisses. All of them!!! (City Hall)

Day 15: Your Favorite Ending

City Hall!

Day 16: A Kdrama you started but can’t finish

I have a few… but it were Worlds Within and Lovers that I have attempted to watch twice and I still can’t finish any of them.

Day 17: A Kdrama you’ve watched more than once

All of Kim Sun-Ah’s drama, My Name Is Kim Sam Soon being the most watched, followed by City Hall.

Day 18: The Worst Kdrama that you’ve watched until the end

Coffee Prince

Day 19: Your Best Actor

Cha Seung-Won

Day 20: Your Best Actress


Day 21: Your Worst Actor

Kwon Sang-Woo? ㅋㅋㅋ

Day 22: Your Worst Actress

Lee Da-Hee? Eugene? Song Hye-Kyo?

Day 23: Your Best Couple

Jo Guk and Mi-Rae!!!

Day 24: Your Worst Couple

Han-Kyul and Eun-Chan (Coffee Prince)

Day 25: Your First Kdrama

My Name Is Kim Sam Soon

Day 26: Your Recently Finished Kdrama

Secret Garden

Day 27: A Kdrama loved by many but you don’t seem to like

Boys Over Flowers and Coffee Prince

Day 28: A Kdrama not loved by many but you seem to like

The Women Who Still Wants to Marry (because I’m sure a lot likes City Hall too, right? 🙂 )

Day 29: A Kdrama which made you so happy

City Hall

Day 30: A Kdrama which made you so sad

None? My Name Is Kim Sam Soon made me cry so much, but it doesn’t necessarily made me sad. I was a bit sad with disappointed for When It’s At Night. I usually feel sad whenever I finished watching a good drama. I feel empty.

Listening to K-dramas

This started as a comment in Hangukdrama and Korean blog’s Learning Languages – a revolutionary approach entry. And after clicking the POST COMMENT button, I was surprised that it was really long and that it looks like a blog entry itself. So why don’t I blog it anyway? (edited some parts)

I watch Korean movies and dramas, and started listening to Korean songs (mostly Drama OSTs) on my computer, ipod and cellphone. I listen to podcast lessons too, if I have time.

And just recently, I decided to LISTEN to Korean dramas. I just went back to school and, although Korean classes are part of my current curriculum, it still means lesser time to study self-study Korean. AND lesser time to watch Korean dramas (sad!). I usually have my music on whatever I do (review for an exam, reading readings, writing a report, going to and from school), so I thought, why not listen to dramas instead? I extracted the audio of my favorite drama (My Name Is Kim Sam Soon and later on will listen to City Hall too – yey!) and I listen to it while studying, and while on my way to and from school. Sometimes even during classes if I can sneak it.

At the moment, it doesn’t matter whether I understand everything or nothing at all. I just familiarize myself with the sounds, intonation, expressions, speed. I get to pick up vocabs and grammar patterns too as I listen, intentionally or unintentionally. At the same time I get to enjoy listening to Kim Sun-Ah‘s voice. And I also get to memorize some lines from the drama too.

Recently I started studying the scripts too. My Korean is still not good that’s why I’m still lost with a lot of grammar patterns that I don’t know. So I’m focusing on vocabs for the mean time. It’s fun when you get to recognize a pattern you just learned as you listen. And it’s also equally fun, when you are in class and a new grammar or vocab is being introduce and you remember it from the drama. For me it makes my remember grammar or vocabs easier – especially if it was Kim Sun-Ah who said it! 🙂

Of course this method will only work for some people. It may sound really boring, but since I’m so addicted to a My Name Is Kim Sam Soon and City Hall. I wouldn’t mind listening to it over and over until I memorize all the lines. ㅋㅋㅋ

Funny thing though, I was told, about 3 times already, by 3 different groups of Korean friends, at 3 different times, that I sound very much like Kim Sam-Soon. Hmm… would I sound like Mi-Rae when I start listening to City Hall?

So I guess it’s a proof that you’ll get to pick up something from listening. I was not mimicking Sam-Soon at all. I don’t even know how to mimic her. It just came out naturally.

And this is exactly my concern when I start learning Japanese next semester. I am not exposed at all to Japanese. In my lifetime, I think I’ve only seen 2 Japanese dramas, 1 anime series and no more than 20 Japanese movies. I have 6 Japanese songs out of my 500+ Korean songs in my netbook (and no Japanese song in my ipod) and I don’t remember the last time I played any of them. ㅋㅋㅋ My only motivation: Kim Sun-Ah speaks fluent Japanese. So i guess I just have to watch video clips and interviews of her speaking Japanese over and over and over. 🙂

[드라마] 당신 혹시 나 좋아해? “Secret Garden” Episode 3

I’m not very impressed with Episode 3. Maybe I was expecting too much since I enjoyed the first 2 episodes. I’m not saying Episode 3 is bad. No! Not at all. But it seems like not much happen on this episode.

I can’t help but remember My Name Is Kim Sam Soon with this scene though:

라임: 당신 혹시 나 좋아해? 나 좋아한냐구?!

주원: 내가 그렇게 미친놈같아? 아니 내가 어디 모자라보여? 나 같은 사람이 댁같은 여자 좋아하는거 봤어? 현실적으로 그게 말이 된다고 생각해? 착각하는거 같아 말해두는데 나랑 결혼하고 싶어 줄서있는 학벌집안외모되는 여자들 사진만 쌓아도 빌딩 하나 쌓아. 근데 그쪽은 집안학벌능력나이 뭐하나 괜찮은게 없잖아 혹시 해당사항 있음 손들고?!

아 진짜! Really! When Joo-Won raised his hand, I was half-expecting he’ll say Ra-Im’s hands are ugly! That they look like 족발.

삼순:  너 나 좋아하니? 너 나 좋아해?

진헌: 전에 얘기하지 않았나. 당신같은 여자를 누가 안고 싶어 하겠냐고. 당신… 내 타입 아냐. 왠 줄 알어? 손이 안예뻤거든. 족발이야?

Then when Joo-Won started raising his voice…

주원: 봐, 없지?

라임: 근데 왜 따라다녀

주원: 그걸 왜 나한테 물어?

라임: 그럼 누구한테 물어?

주원: 댁한테 물어야지? 자꾸 떠오르는데 어떡해! 안봐도 계속 같이 있는거나 마찬가진데 나보러 어쩌라고?! “김수한무 거북이와 두루미” 어?! 내가 이걸 밤마다 어?! 내가 오죽하면 이래? 당신대체 나한테 무슨 짓을 한거야 왜하필 난데?!

I was then expecting Ra-Im to answer, “알았어, 꺼져줄게”

진헌: 자꾸 생각나서 미치겠어! 왜 내 머릿 속에 들어와서  날 괴롭혀 왜! 차라리 꺼져버리든가!

삼순: 알았어, 꺼져줄게

It was a little bit annoying for a big My Name Is Kim Sam Soon fan like me… since they were not from the same writer. But it didn’t ruin my viewing. I am just nitpicking a little.

I still am not buying how Joo-Won can fall for Ra-Im so easily. Not that Ra-Im is not likeable. In fact she is. But it’s still so fast for me that I didn’t feel anything with the supposedly swoon-worthy sit-ups scene (that I’m sure a lot of Secret Garden fans almost died of).

But I did like it when Joo-Won pulled Ra-Im’s chair for her:

주워: 그 나이되도록 의자 빼주는 놈도 없었어?

Make’s me wonder, is Joo-Won perhaps not just Oska’s cousin but Jo Guk’s too?

조국: 이런건 남자가 하게 해야죠.차문 열어줄때까지 타지도 말고, 손수건 안깔아주면 어디 앉지도 말고,숟가락 젓가락 안놔주면 밥도먹지말고. 한번도 안그래봤죠?

I also still can’t feel anything for the characters. Joo-Won is insanely funny. And for the first time, I’m literally rolling on the floor laughing at the lead guy instead of the lead girl. But I still can’t get into him.

Nor into Ra-Im.

Which is weird. For Ra-Im seems to be a lovable and really cool character.

Now I’m trying to imagine, had Ra-Im been Kim Sun Ah, would it make any difference? I can confidently say NO. Sure I will have a bias towards Suna Unnie, but with that aside, Ha Ji-Won is actually playing Gil Ra-Im perfectly.

I just don’t understand why I still feel detached to the characters. Despite the fact that I’m enjoying this drama. Maybe I just need more time for the characters to grow into me.

Sorry if I keep comparing Secret Garden to other dramas, specifically My Name Is Kim Sam Soon and City Hall. I know it’s not very… uhm ethical? Next time I’ll make sure I’ll put a disclaimer saying that I’m not doing any reviews of this series, just simply prattling about it as I watch. 🙂

Oh, and did I mention I love THE bag?