Saturday, 27 June 2009


I'm a fan of kimbaps, rice and stuff rolled up in a seaweed sheet: this has already been established. My favourite variety is tuna, or in Korean, 'chamchi'. Written down it looks like this: 참치. The Korean symbol for the phoneme 'ch', you can probably work out, is the one that resembles the pi symbol with a hat on. The Korean symbol for the sound 'j' is the same but without the hat, and obviously 'ch' and 'j' have a similar phonetical resonance.

Now. I talk to my kids about food all the time, so kimbaps are frequently discussed. And to my incomprehesion, a couple of times my response to the question 'what's your favourite kimbap?' has elicited giggling. What? Tuna? What's funny about tuna? Then one kid was kind enough to spell it out to me: the Korean slang word 'jamji' means... that's right, vagina. Yes, I've unwittingly confessed to eight year olds that I enjoy eating vaginas.

One class went sick on it. Really sick. I walked into class one day to find this on the board:

The on the second picture you can also see 'jjijji', translatable into English as 'boobies'. I think those are meant to be nipples.

I'll be home in ten days. Ooh.

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