Korean SAT, Hermit Crab, Cheese Rice

When airplanes don't take off (briefly) in SK

안녕하세요, it’s Ari, your friendly Korean source and your weekend reminder🎉 Today’s newsletter is about the day airplanes don’t take off (briefly), must-know slangs, and a childhood food recipe. Let’s start!

🎧 You can listen to this newsletter on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, or other your favorite podcast platforms.


👋 What Up Korea?

Fun facts about Korean SAT

Yesterday was the most important day for many Korean senior high school students. It was the day of 수능, national entrance exam for university. On this day, airplanes don't take off during listening tests and companies adjust working hours to help students go to test centers in time. Mothers of test-takers visit temples to pray for their children’s good score. Junior students cheer up their seniors at test centers chanting “화이팅” and giving out snacks🍫 (This year, due to the pandemic, cheering is not allowed.)

Once the test is over, the students can enjoy discounts with their test registration card. The card is a magic discount coupon for many places including restaurants, movie theaters and amusement parks. For example, this year, a department store gives 20 percent discount and an airline offers 30 percent discount for test-takers. Since the card has so much discount value, some students sell their cards online for 30 to 100 USD after the exam. (But it's illegal 🙅‍♀️) 

Now we can watch The Simpsons all day long

Disney + has arrived in South Korea last Friday🎉 There are many Marvel, Simpsons, and Toy Story fans in the country. I bet many Koreans are thrilled to be able to stream The Simpsons all day long. Streaming service market is getting competitive and crowded. The biggest player in the country is Netflix with 4 million subscribers by May 2021 followed by many domestic services like Wavve and Tving. Many of my friends and me subscribe at least one service. In my case, I subscribe Netflix (I subscribed it for Squid Game) and Coupang Play (Korean version of Amazon Prime) along with some Chinese services since I’m into C-Dramas lately💖

Right before Disney + arriving, Apple TV + has launched in Korea as well. The service recently released a new sci-fi thriller K-Drama called Dr. Brain featuring Parasite star Lee Sun-gyun. It’s reported that another star-studded K-Drama is coming from Apple TV + featuring Yoon Yuh-jung who starred in Minari. With huge success of Squid Game and big money from subscription services, now we can see many good K-Dramas featuring movie stars at home, which I really love!


📺 Learn Korean with Hospital Playlist (2020)

(Request from Chantelle💖) Hospital Playlist or 슬기로운 의사생활 is a big-hit medical-romance series. It’s about five doctors who are close friends working at the same hospital. It has two seasons and it was so popular that its OST topped Korean music charts and it even has its own variety show which is very rare for a drama. If you loved Reply series, you’ll probably love Hospital Playlist since the two series share a director, staff, and cast. Aside from difficult medical jargons, I picked an easy quote from this series,

The quote which is full of slangs means, “(I’m) a social person, and he is a hermit.” When you watch the series on Netflix with English subtitle, it says, “I’m ‘on fleek’, and he’s ‘unfleek.’” But I think the sub is misleading. 인싸 is a slang that came from the English word, ‘insider.’ It means ‘social butterfly’ or ‘social person’ and 아싸 came from ‘outsider,’ meaning ‘hermit’ or ‘a person who likes to be alone and doesn’t have many friends.’

얜 is a shortened form of 얘는. 얘 literally means ‘this kid’ and it’s a personal & casual pronoun for referring to a person who’s younger or the same age with you. Think of 얘 as a casual ‘he/she’ in English. You can use this word, for example, when introducing your friend to another friend of yours at a party. I made three daily Korean sentences using expressions in the quote. Check them out,

  1. 저 (인싸) 아니에요 I’m not (a social person).

  2. 얘는 (내 친구)야 He/she is (my friend).

  3. 아싸여서 (집)에 있는 걸 좋아해요 I’m a hermit so I love staying at (home).

Change a bracketed word to make a different sentence! You can practice speaking the above sentences with my podcast on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, or other podcast platforms.

🎤 Rap your Korean

Send me your Korean voice message! If you’re a beginner Korean learner, speak the three sentences you learned today. You can change a bracketed word in the sentences to make a different sentence. If you’re a more advanced learner or adventurous, send me your voice message about today’s newsletter (your opinion about WUK stories, etc.).

Send it by next Tuesday KST, then your voice will be on the next podcast episode. If you want my feedback for your Korean speaking, leave a comment after submission. I’m all ears!

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🍳 Cheese Rice

Cheese rice or 치즈밥 is a childhood food for many young Koreans. Restaurants near schools offer this food for cheap price, around 3 to 4 USD. It has every flavor kids love: sweet, a little spicy, and crispy. The ingredients are, onion, ham, canned corn, rice, mozzarella cheese, sesame oil, red pepper paste (Gochujang), ketchup and sugar. You also need ttukbaegi if you want the crispy taste. Ttukbaegi or Dolsot or stone bowl is a staple kitchen item in Korea. It retains heat so it helps make rice at the bottom crispy. You can replace ttukbaegi with a pan. Check out the super easy recipe in this video and try for yourself!

Thanks for reading! Leave a comment, ❤ or share this newsletter! You can also send me your voice message or leave your song/drama request in comments. See you next week! 안녕👋

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📚 P.S. I’m making my first Korean playbook which is about vocabulary! Plz look forward to it :D