Thursday, February 28, 2008

Designer clothes let people know if you are good or bad

So sayeth one of my students. We were practicing brainstorming and the topic was "clothes". Most of the other students came up with: you can express your personality, you are protected from the weather, etc.

This was par for the course from this particular student. He can endlessly discuss the cost of latest acquisitions. ("My phone cost $900!") Pretty much every class, I want to look at him and say, "We've got it-- your parents are willing to waste insane amounts of money.")

Of course, as a teacher, I love all my students equally. ;-)

Monday, February 18, 2008

A Brand-Spanking New Nephew

How beautiful is he? He is my oldest brother's second child and my fifth nephew/ niece.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Namdaemun Down in Flames

Last night, "a guy in his 50s" torched Namdaemun-- Korea's national treasure number 1. Karl thinks National Treasure number 2 played a role. Joking aside, I really can't express how I feel about this.

I am more than a little angry that the nation has literal hordes of riot police to "protect" every square inch of Seoul were one might run into an American, but they can't spare one or two to guard it's number one national treasure?

Apparently, some of the blame lies with the firefighters who "thought" the fire had been extinguished. You know, in some countries, firefighters check every inch of a fire to check for smoldering... The president-elect has said it will cost $21 million and take three years to rebuild.

Update: A classic example of why Korea will always be foreign to me. The arsonist has been caught. He was trying to get attention to his cause (a property compensation dispute) and was caught last year trying to burn down one of the palaces. Are you kidding me? Seriously, is there any other culture where that would make sense? This is like someone in the US destroying the Liberty Bell to protest losing part of their yard to a road widening project.

There's a new Yacht Rock!

Check it out:

If you haven't seen it before and are "of a certain age" (40ish), you have to watch Yacht Rock. It's a mockumentary behind the scenes of 80s "smooth music" and is hilarious. The production values are proudly backyard, but that is actually part of the appeal, IMHO, and the stories will make you laugh out loud.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Sigh... Vacation is Over

Short but sweet. I did not leave my abode for three consecutive days. maybe not something to brag about, but fun nonetheless.

I read three books. Two were for school, though, so they had to be read anyway.

Before I go to bed tonight I will have finished a pair of socks. No photos yet. Here is the scarf I've been knitting for my sister to go with the LSU Tychus I knit her for Christmas (but still haven't mailed):

Perhaps you can see the problem. I've started and frogged seven or eight different patterns that I ended up not liking. Maybe she wouldn't mind just wrapping the yarn around her neck... Students like to make fashion statements, right?

While I'm showing exciting photos of unknit yarn, here are my wound skeins for the first round of Sock Madness 2. Yes, that's lace weight. Lace. Socks. It's going to be doubled, but it will still require very small needles in order to create sock fabric. I'm hoping 2mm will do, since that's the smallest I can get here.

My cat has been busy this week playing hide-and-seek. I don't think he quite knows what to do with so much company; he hasn't had this much constant companionship since I successfully jetisonned Mr. Please-Be-My-Ex. You might notice his hiding skills are, um, rusty. I was changing the sheets when he "hid" here. That's just poor strategy.

Thursday, February 07, 2008


Or, in English, "Happy New Year!" (basically)

The traditional soup to eat on New Year's Day is Rice Cake Soup, which helps you become a year older (since everyone gets older on New Year's Day, don't you know). However, Rice Cake Soup is somewhat lacking in delicious-ness, if you know what I mean. If you've ever eaten homemade play-doh, you DO know what I mean-- just imagine it in boiling water. Yum! So, this year, try this Chinese version of a Korean favorite instead:
Mmmm... that's right. In just three minutes you can have a nice steaming bowl of dog ramyeon. Don't you just wish there were a Chinese grocer near you?

Sunday, February 03, 2008

The End of an Era

Well, after nearly a year, the podcast I've been doing has come to an end so Karl can move back to Toronto. We recorded the final podcast at my apartment and it ended up being a three hour extravaganza of the usual rambling and nonsense (this week with 50% more rambling!). Don't despair, Joe and I have a new podcast in the works, tentatively planned to begin at the end of March.

If you are asking yourself, "What podcast?" you can listen to the last episode here:
Part 1-- Disclaimer: I am not Cajun, people from outside of Louisiana just lump us all together.:-)
Part 2
Part 3

If three hours just aren't enough, you can listen to the previous 58 episodes (I'm only on the ones since February or March of last year, though). OR:
You can check out Joe's blog here.
You can check out Karl's writing here and here and Franglais lessons here.
You can check out Karl's other podcast here.

What with Karl being quoted by the BBC and Joe being in the New York Times (not to mention his biweekly column (click Expat Living) in the local tissue, uh, I mean newspaper), I'm basically the unknown loser of the podcast.