All of these are real questions asked by students.
What’s a faq?
Frequently means "often". So a FAQ is a list of common questions
Sometimes foreigners hear the same question many times in Korea. Are
you American? Do you like kimchi? This FAQ answers these kinds of questions.
Do you like kimchi?
Yes I do. I eat it almost every day. If you have some extra, please
give me some, because my mother doesn’t make it.
Do you like Korea?
Yes. That is why I stayed here after one year. Sometimes being a foreigner
in Korea is complicated, but I like Korea a lot.
You must be lonely in Korea. Do you have a girlfriend?
Sometimes I miss people from other places, my friends and my family
in Canada. But I am never lonely in Korea! There are so many people
here! And I am very busy. So I am not usually lonely.
And I’m honestly not sure whether have a girlfriend.
What is your favorite Korean food?
Summer food: Cong Guk Su, Neng Myeon, Kal Guk Su, Bo Shin Tang
Winter food: Kimchi Wang Mandu Jeongeol (at Ajuma Neng Myeon),
Be Bim Mandu (at Shinpo Woori Mandu) and Dol Sot Be Bim Bap and also
Banya Dol Sot Bap.
What? You like Bo Shin Tang?
Yes! It’s GOOD. I thought it was strange to eat a dog the first time
I tried it, but it’s good! I wish I could eat Bo Shin Tang in winter
Some foreigners think eating dogs is bad, but I don’t think it is different
from eating pigs or cows. Pigs are a lot smarter than dogs and we don’t
feel bad eating pig meat.
But some Korean food I don’t like is budae chigae, because
of the SPAM… I hate spam! I also don’t eat
Bundeggi too often. Baby worms is not the best snack for me!
How old are you?
Okay, that works better in person. I was born on the 4th of March, 1974.
You can do the math for yourself. And then you must call me Hyeong or
Oppah or Dongseng next time you see me.
Where are you from?
I am from Canada. My home town is Saskatoon, in the province called
Saskatchewan. There are less people in Saskatoon than in Iksan, but
Saskatoon’s size is much bigger.
I also lived in Edmonton for a year, and studied in Montreal for a
few years (just before I moved to Korea).
How do you say that city’s name?
Sas-ka-toon. Saskatoon is in Sas-kat-che-wan. They are Indian names.
You have an earring in your left ear. Are you gay?
No, I am not gay. Having an earring doesn’t mean you are gay. I got
my ear pierces at the beginning of University and nobody in my family
noticed for four months. That was very funny!
Are you married?
What is your favorite sport?
My father was a sports person, and so is my sister, but I don’t like
sports too much. I am my family’s bookworm. My sister played soccer
and rugby and I learned computer stuff and wrote poems and stories.
But I do like to swim. I am learning to swim at the YMCA here in Iksan!
What is your favorite music?
I like a lot of music, but I think my favorite music is jazz music.
grew up only listening to classical music and jazz, but when I got older
I learned about the Beatles and started to listen to other music too.
Now I like some rock, some electronic music, music from all over the
world, and some modern composers.
My favorite musicians and composers include: Johannes Ockeghem, John
Coltrane, Miles Davis, JS Bach, Steve Reich, Björk, Thelonious
Monk, Bernart da Ventadour, Tori Amos (curse me for it!), Matthew Shipp,
Steve Coleman and Five Elements, Salif Keita, Bob Marley, Dexter Gordon,
Gavin Bryars, Jah Wobble, Pete Namlook, the Uh Uh Boo Project Band,
Belle & Sebastian, Pharoah Sanders, Hum, Albert Ayler, the Orb,
and Milt Jackson.
I’ve never heard of most of those people and bands. Do you listen
to any Korean music?
Of course I do. I live in Korea. I like a lot of Korean music. The haegum
is probably my favorite Korean traditional instrument. The kayagum is
also very beautiful. But mostly I only know about Korean indie rock
So then who is your favorite Korean musician?
I like 3rd Line Butterfly, Cocore, Kim Kwang Seok, PiPi Band, and especially
Hwang Sin Hae Band and the Uh
Uh Boo Project Band.
Your nose looks bent. Why?
I am very very bad at catching baseballs.
Sometimes when you look at me I can’t tell whether it’s me or
the person next to me. Why?
I have something called lazy eye. Basically my left eye is almost
blind. It’s not a problem except that this is the reason I don’t drive.
You lost a lot of weight during your first year in Korea. What’s
Food poisoning. I got sick a few times. I also exercised more than I
used to in Canada, and started to eat only Korean food almost every
day. Korean food is mostly pretty healthy.
You eat Korean food everyday? Can you cook it?
Of course! I live here!
I like to cook all kinds of food. I like making Indian curry, Italian
pasta (like spaghetti and lasagna), and Korean food. I can cook simple
Korean foods like Sun Dubu Chigae, Kimchi Bokeum Bap, Kimchi Chigae,
Ddeok Mandu Guk, Ddeok Guk, Tuen Jang Chigae, a few side dishes like
Passeot and Congnamul, and of course stuff like Sam Gyeop Sal. I want
to learn to make Cong Guk Su, Neng Myeon, and Gamja Tang.
Some day I might even learn how to make Pechu Kimchi.
Do you have a religion?
No, I don’t. I grew up Catholic but I don’t follow the religion anymore.
I do respect the part of Christianity that calls people to feel respect
and love for other people, but for me I put my faith in science and
If you don’t have a religion, that means you can drink alcohol,
First of all, I don’t understand how Christians can ban alcohol. Jesus
turned water into wine. He drank wine at meals when he could
I think drinking like a crazy person is bad. But a little alcohol between
friends is not bad. I feel sad that some people cannot enjoy a little
liquor with their friends, when that is even part of Christianity. Jesus
said people should drink wine together and remember him!
Yes, I can drink alcohol. I don’t drink much these days. The best Korean
alcohols are Bok Bun Ja, Sul Guk Ju, So Guk Ju, and even soju if it’s
with good food.
When will you go back to the USA?
First of all, I am CANADIAN! I don’t really think Canada
is better than the USA, but we are in some small ways different.
How would you feel if I kept saying you are Japanese or Chinese? It’s
basically the same thing for me: I’m not British, Australian, French,
or American. I am Canadian.
I don’t know when I will visit my family again, but I don’t think I
will move back to Canada to live there. I like living outside of Canada
Do you know any other languages besides English?
I learned to speak French in Montreal. When I left Canada, I could speak
in French about the same level as most English free-talking students
in our school. I worked with French people and spoke French a lot.
But I am forgetting my French; when I try to speak French, a mixture
of French and Korean words and grammar comes out of my mouth.
Are you studying Korean?
Yes, I am. Slowly, and patiently. I like it. It’s fun. I write on the
internet almost everyday in Korean! If you want to see
my writing in Korean, look here.
Why are you studying Korean?
Like I have said so many times already: BECAUSE I LIVE HERE. I like
the challenge and I want to be able to talk to people around me in Korean,
including people who don’t study English. I’d also like to be able to
talk to my girlfriend in her language, instead of only using mine.
What do you think of Korean women?
I think women in general are wonderful. I LOVE women. Korean women too!
Whether someone is Korean or Canadian or African or Arabic isn’t a big
deal to me. I mostly care about a person’s character. My mother taught
me there are good people and bad people in every country and color.
My favorite Korean women are the ones with strong personalities and
bright minds. I know a few of them. These women are usually friendly
to me and I learn a lot from them. I want to know more about feminism
Who do you prefer to teach, adults or children?
I like teaching adults because they usually want to learn. I like teaching
kids because we can be really silly and play sometimes. Adults and kids
are just different.
Can I have your cell phone number?
Probably no. I only give that number to close friends. I teach 30 or
40 new people every two months and every time, people ask for the number.
If all those people have my phone number, the phone will never stop
ringing. And I am very busy already! So if you ask me and I say no,
don’t feel bad. You wouldn’t give your phone number to 600 people a
Anyway, you can ALWAYS email me. I never mind getting email from students.
Can you edit this English document for me?
If you are a good student, I probably don’t mind. But if you never come
to class, I won’t help you. Also, if I do help you, remember that I
might also need help translating something into Korean or from Korean
to English sometime. Also please ask a few days before you need it done.
I am sometimes very very busy.
Can I ask you a question?
Please do! If the question is okay, I will try to answer it.