Sunday, July 31, 2011

Does Heaven repay those who bury 2-headed snakes?

"The Tale of the Two-headed Snake"

When Son-suk Oh (孫叔敖) was a young child (為嬰兒), he went out to play (出遊), but when he returned (而還), he was upset (憂) and would not eat (而不食). His mother (其母) asked (問) the reason (其故).

While crying (泣而), he answered (對曰),"Today (今日), I saw (吾見) a 2-headed snake (兩頭蛇), so I fear (恐) I have no days left before going to death (去死無日矣).

His mother asked (母曰), "Now (今), where is the snake (蛇安在)?"

Answering (曰), "I heard (吾聞) a person who sees a 2-headed snake (見兩頭蛇者) dies (死). I feared (吾恐) others (他人) would also see (又見), so I have already (已) buried it (埋之矣).

His mother said (母曰), "Don't worry (無憂). You won't die (汝不死). I have heard that (吾聞之) if there are those who do good secretly (有陰德者), Heaven (天) repays them (報) with blessings (以福).


Friday, July 22, 2011

Is Puberty a Good Time to Start Learning Korean?

A seventh grade girl is attracted to a Korean-American boy and starts learning Korean. Four years later, she becomes the first "non-Korean" to win second place in a Korean speech contest hosted by the U.S. National Association for Korean Schools. Then, after a phone interview with a Korean reporter, the girl is described by the reporter as being able to speak Korean as if it were her mother tongue.

Four years may seem like a long time to learn a language, but when learning Korean, it is not that long, especially if you are trying to learn it outside Korea.

Link to Article

And she is very good.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

"If I were a leaf," by Gerry Bevers

If I were a leaf, I'd want to be
One of a sprawling sycamore tree.
Then under my soulful, silent shade,
Young and old could drink pink lemonade.

Summer showers go splitter splatter,
But under me it would not matter.
My friends and I would be broad and green,
Stopping the raindrops while staying clean.

Thursday, July 07, 2011

How do Koreans say "to pass the buck"?

The American idiom "to pass the buck" is translated in Korean as 책임을 전가하다. 책임(責任) means "responsibility," and 전가(轉嫁) means "to impute" or "to attribute."

What I find interesting about the Korean expression is that 전가(轉嫁) also means "to remarry" on the part of a woman. The Chinese characters literally mean "transfer the wife's marriage."

Unloading your wife onto the back of another man seems like a perfect example of "passing the buck."