My Korean Husband

Intercultural Life

Month: September 2012 (page 2 of 6)

Koreans choosing English names

When Koreans come to an English speaking country they often choose an English name for themselves. This is usually because many Korean names are too hard for native English speakers to pronounce. They may choose something that is similar sounding to their Korean name, or use the initials from their Korean name (I’ve known a GD), or they may just pick any name they randomly like.

I’ve found that Korean guy names tend to be much harder than Korean girls names to pronounce. I know too many guys with names like Sung-hyeon, Sung-yong, Sung-eun, Sung-hyuks. Confusing right? The ‘hy’ sound in particular is difficult.

A lot of Korean girl names are easy enough and I don’t think they always need to adopt an English name, especially when they tend to pick the same few names. I’ve known so many Ellies, Ellas, Irenes, Eileens… That gets confusing too! But I can understand the desire to pick a new name when going to a new country, perhaps it can be seen as an opportunity to reinvent yourself.

So what is my husband’s English name? Well… it’s Hugh. And this is how he chose it:

Yup, that’s how. He named himself after Hugh Grant. He actually uses the name ‘Hugh’ with other Koreans as well. His Korean name is a bit country sounding and Koreans will often comment on it. It is ‘Sun-hong’. But actually should be spelled like “Soon-hong” as that’s how you pronounce it properly. But, when my husband first made his passport he couldn’t speak English and if he wrote “Soon-hong” it didn’t fit on one line, but “Sun-hong” did. And that’s how he got stuck with the wrong spelling in English.

Choosing the English name ‘Hugh’ didn’t stop Korean people from making comments about his name either. Hugh Grant is not exactly the coolest actor and people laugh at him for copying that name. Especially Korean girls because they don’t think he looks like a romantic comedy actor. So often this happens:

Sometimes it’s just easier to pretend that he named himself after Wolverine.

So what do I call him? Neither of those names usually. An interesting thing about Korean culture is how much you can avoid actually saying someone’s name. You end up having many names/titles, not only both a Korean and English name, but for example, with my husband: younger guys will call him Hyung or Hyung-nim and younger females can call him Oppa. Technically he can also be called Ajusshi now – but don’t call him that! It makes it sound like he is old! Anyway, I usually use Korean pet names like ‘Jagi-ah’ but we don’t use ‘Yeo-bo’ yet because that feels a bit weird and young people don’t use it as much these days. And I use ‘Oppa’ when I want something or want him to do something.

So if YOU could choose a new name for yourself, what would you choose?


And of course should be saying something like ‘안녕하세요’. I manage to do that fine, I just bow really badly sometimes. But Koreans have always been really polite even when I do it like that.

How to make Chocolate Covered Strawberries

It’s Sunday! No comic today but I thought I’d show you have easy it is to make chocolate covered strawberries like the ones I made for my husband’s birthday.

What you need:

Strawberries– of course. They are cheap in Australia at the moment so I’m using 2 punnets.

Chocolate– I used a milk chocolate and white chocolate. You could use other kinds like dark chocolate. It doesn’t have to be really high quality, I’m just using the normal supermarket blocks (though it’s always good to try and get ‘fair trade’ ones). It may depend on what the normal quality of chocolate is in your country. Some countries don’t have very good chocolate (um… Korea). However I have made these in Korea and I used the Ghana brand which worked fine – I would not recommend Hershey though. Also, you don’t need to use cooking chocolate or special melting chocolate, normal chocolate is fine.

Non-stick baking paper

Paper kitchen towel– I use 100% recycled because I don’t like killing trees unnecessarily.

The first step is to wash the strawberries. Leave the tops on because you want something to hold onto when you are dipping them later. Put the strawberries out on some paper towel.

Break up the milk chocolate into a bowl.

Okay now we need to melt the chocolate. DON’T PUT IT IN THE MICROWAVE! Chocolate burns really easily and once it’s burnt it’s disgusting. We gotta do this slowly. So we have a smaller bowl right? Get one that’s bigger. The smaller bowl needs to fit inside but there needs to be some space. Then boil some water. Pour some boiling water into the bigger bowl and then place the smaller bowl that contains the chocolate inside it. Don’t let any water splash into the chocolate! Water and chocolate don’t mix. The chocolate will slowly start to melt. Stir it around to help it along.

Stir until it’s a nice smooth consistency.

Eh, close enough. Also tear off a sheet of the baking paper and put on a large plate, you may need a few plates, depending.

Okay remember how I said chocolate and water don’t mix? Well we just washed those strawberries… and they are wet. The chocolate isn’t going to stick on wet strawberries and water will make the chocolate gross. You could wash the strawberries hours before and let them dry. But who has time for that? I’m showing you the quick way.

Grab some paper towel and dry a strawberry gently. So just press the paper towel to the strawberry and let it soak up the water.

Holding the leaves of the strawberry, dip it into the melted chocolate.

Then place it gently on the plate covered with baking paper. Repeat with half the strawberries. Stick the plates in the fridge so the chocolate sets.

Now do the same with the white chocolate. Two bowls with hot water in-between.Dip the remaining strawberries into the white chocolate and put on baking paper lined plates.

So hopefully the milk chocolate ones that we put in the fridge are set enough, so get them out of the fridge and put the white chocolate ones in. I still have some of both chocolates left which I’m going to use for very quick decorations.

Get a chopstick or a knife and dip it into the leftover chocolate.

Drizzle the white chocolate over the strawberries. You can do this really quickly, no need for it to be perfect.

Now drizzle the milk chocolate over the white chocolate strawberries (which are hopefully set enough).

Put the strawberries back in the fridge to make sure they set properly. They have to be set before you peel them off the backing paper.


EASY! But there’s truth in the saying “The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach”. I’ve found these work pretty well…

Time to go home

I’m learning Korean but very slowly, and I’m still a beginner. But because I am exposed to the Korean language every day I can understand more than people think. Especially the things my husband says because I’m used to how he speaks Korean. Every day I’m slowly understanding more and more- which may not always be good for him!

Bad boy! He was trying to be cool in front of his younger single friends.

I had to draw this comic quickly late at night, hence the grey-scale and roughness. Sorry!

Push ups

It’s no secret that I’m terrible at counting in Korean. It doesn’t help that there are two numbering systems in Korean! So I pretty much never count in Korean, only in English.

Okay so even in English I suck… but watching someone workout is boring!

G-Dragon Giveaway- One of a Kind album

YAY GD Giveaway! I have one copy of the Bronze edition of the One of a Kind album.

My source in Korea (my sister-in-law) received it and is sending to me very soon. So I’ll start the giveaway now.I’m giving away the bronze edition because I realise some people of other religions may not be able to have such big religious symbols on something they own. The bronze edition seems like it has less religious imagery (whereas the gold edition has a big cross on it).

This giveaway will run for 10 days and will be drawn at the end of the month. To enter leave a comment in the comment section and don’t forget to like the My Korean Husband Facebook page and follow MyKoreanHusband on twitter.


After Shower

WARNING: Cartoon nudity


Our poor neighbours.

He almost didn’t let me put this one up… Ones that I’m not sure about I check with him first and he said no to this one at first haha. He didn’t want people to think he is some crazy naked guy. But I think my readers are smart enough to understand the difference between cartoon him and real him. For comics I just focus on certain aspects in order to make something interesting or funny, but real life is much more complex.

But yeah, he doesn’t do this every day! Just a little bit lately.

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