Saturday, November 05, 2005

What does 깐돌이 mean?

While reading "내 동생" on the Korean Lab Web site, I came across the word 깐돌이, which is defined in this book as student slang for "똑똑한 남자." However, while talking to a Korean friend of mine on the phone today, I asked her about 깐돌이, and she said it was used to refer to a "meticulous person," which makes sense since 깐깐하다 means "tenancious," "meticulous," or "particular." Now I am not sure which meaning was used on the Korean Lab Web site.

By the way, I bought my copy of this book years ago and paid 3,800 won for it. Today, I looked and found the new version of the book here for 15,000 won. Comparing the two tables of contents, the only thing that seems different is that the newer version has added two new sections: 12. 욕설----105 and 상업어----122. Unless those two sections are something really special, I think I was right to get my book early.


  1. Hello, Gerry,

    I don't actually have comment for this post; rather, I have a Korean language question for you. I learned a long time ago in a beginning level Korean language class that "ship-da" is for talking about oneself and "shipeohada" is for talking about others. Pardon the romanized Korean, but my computer here in the States is not equipped with Hangeul. I have heard Koreans using "shipda" as in "ga-go-ship-eo-yo" referring to another person and a recent episode of "Let's Speak Korean" uses the "shipda" form when a speaker asks about a listener's preferences.

    Can you clarify?

  2. Hi Sonagi,

    싶다 is a auxillary adjective that is used to describe your wants or desires. It is not used to express the wants and desires of others since we are not mindreaders and cannot be sure what they are. However, you can use 싶다 to ask another person about his or her wants or desires since you are only asking and not presuming to know. It is never used to talk about a third person, either in statements or questions. When you want to talk about other person's wants or desires, you should use 싶어하다. Here are some examples:

    죽고 싶다.
    I want to die.

    죽고 싶니?
    Do you want to die?

    그는 죽고 싶어한다.
    He wants to die.

    그는 죽고 싶어하니?
    Does he want to die?

    I hope that answers your question. If not, just let me know.

  3. Yes, you answered my question clearly. Thank you.


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