23 Mar

hershey squirts

Who taught: Max


squirts a water pistol

Do you like chocolate? I do. Also, I live in Pennsylvania. What is a big deal of living in PA?

Well, I am very sure that you all have ever eaten some chocolates from Hershey’s. There is a town called Hershey in PA where the company has its headquarter. I am not sure what is first, the town or the company? I have never been to it which is a shame. I really should. Maybe, sometime this year.

Let me shift gears! A few weeks ago, my dog, Max, ate four hard-boiled eggs while we were not around. Do you guys know that guilty look that dogs have when they did something wrong? I saw that on that day. Personally, I think it is dog’s poker face. “What could go wrong? He got bunch of protein. That should be good for him.” That’s what I thought.

But, that evening, he had diarrhea. Gross!

Here is the question! What is the connection between hershey and diarrhea? Take a moment to think about it. Hope you are not reading this while eating something. πŸ™‚

So….. did you get it? That’s right. They have the same color. While writing, I am having some chocolates. Yummy!

There is the last touch to come up with a perfect expression to mean diarrhea. We cannot just say “hershey” to mean diarrhea.

Now, time to think about how things come out of your body when you are experiencing diarrhea. Well, I saw that from Max. It squirts. The best way you can remember the word, “squirt,” is to think about water coming out from a water pistol. Isn’t it perfect? Look at the picture I added here. Can you get it?

What else you can do other than combining “hershey” (color) and “squirts” (action) to mean diarrhea? This is a pure perfection. Someone was a genius.

Here is your task to do: From now on, try to use “hershey squirts” when you have outbreaks of diarrhea.

P.S.: I have always had a hard time to spell “diarrhea” correctly. How about you? Don’t you think it is hard to spell?

16 Mar

Under the bus and scapegoat

Who taught : Ellen and Sheldon

throw under the bus

throw under the bus (source: http://www.projectmanager.com/)

It’s been a while. I am so sorry that I have not been able to update you with new expressions. In my defense, I have been extremely busy during the last few months. Still sounds like a lame excuse, I know…

I will try to do my best to not slack any more. Anyway, that does not mean there have been no new English expressions for me. In fact, there have been a lot.

As I mentioned before, one of the things I regularly do to improve my English is to watch diverse TV shows, at least one or two hours a day.

Sometimes, I get to hear the same expression over and over for a short period of time. And, there was one recently.

That’s “throw someone under the bus.”

First I heard it from watching Ellen Show and later heard again in Big Bang Theory.

If we take it literally, we would think that it should mean something like “murder someone” because that is exactly what would happen if we throw or push someone under the bus.

But, living in the United States, I have gotten better at catching the context. In both Ellen Show and Big Bang Theory, it was definitely not used to mean “murder someone.”

Instead, I felt that the expression should mean something like, “I do something that would hurt my friend to save myself from a bad situation.” Do you guys know “make a scapegoat of someone?” That was the feeling I had and fortunately I was right.

But, then I asked to myself this question, “why?” Who started to use this expression? According to my research, here is the best origin of the expression.

In Septuagenarian Stew (The Life of a Bum), published in 1990, the Charles Bukowski character Harry pushed his friend Monk in front of a bus, and then stole Monk’s wallet while Monk lay unconscious and probably dying in the street. After taking the wallet, Harry went directly to a bar and, using Monk’s money, bought himself two double whiskeys. Later, Harry went to the Groton Steak House and, again using Monk’s money, bought two beers and two Porterhouse steaks with fries (“go easy on the grease”).

What do you think? This origin really makes me feel the expression perfectly.

So, don’t throw your friend or someone close to you under the bus. Whatever bus it is, that would hurt them. You yourself would not want to be a scapegoat for anything, would you?

08 Nov


Who taught: Julie and Ari



I forgot when exactly Julie, Ari and I talked about this expression, brat, but I do remember that it was related with children.

Do you have children? Well I do not. If you do, then I really hope this expression has nothing to do with you.

Sometimes, some children do something we really do not like such as crying and yelling to get what they want. Even worse, they would never stop till they get what they want. I know….That is really annoying, right? Arghhh…

I have seen those kids in shopping malls or grocery stores, etc. So hard to control. What a troublesome! Don’t get me wrong. I know I am in no position to talk about kids but it is not pleasant for me to see those kids, to be honest.

So, what is one word to describe them? It is “brat.” Some people say, “army brat,” because some kids whose parents are in the Army may develop that kind of obnoxious behaviors. That would be just a prejudice but I want to tell you that it is what people think and say.

Another interesting thing is that brat also means “apron.” What is the connection between apron and a bad child? I have no idea. Do you?

Also, there is an article about how to find out whether your child is a brat or not. Check this out! Hope yours is not.

In Korea, there is an expression, “날라리(Nal-La-Ri).” This means those kids who do not study really hard and do those things people ask not to do. I wonder whether “brat” is the word that I can use to describe those kids, Nal-La-Ri. It does not feel like it.

Can you help me, my American friends, to find the proper word for it? I am curious.

31 Oct


Who taught: Jessy and Ashka



Hey there! How have you been? I really wish all of you are doing well. Hurricane Sandy hit the northeast of the U.S. and a lot of people are without power now. Hope my friends are fine there.

I live in Pittsburgh, PA. A few weeks ago, Jessy and I were taking a walk and we talked about things we are missing, living in a small city. So, Pittsburgh is still a city with around 300,000 people. But, to me, that is nothing. Why? it is because I am from one of the cities near Seoul, Korea and my previous work was in Seoul.

The population of Seoul itself is around 11 million and if we consider the metropolitan area, the population is around 25 million. It is a huge city. To give you an idea about how big it is, it is bigger than New York City. There are a lot of things we used to enjoy, especially at night. Don’t get me wrong. We do like Pittsburgh a lot.

So, the thing we talked about is that it is very different living in Pittsburgh from living in Seoul. When we used to live in Seoul, we call people from small cities or towns “Chon-Nom(μ΄Œλ†ˆ)” in Korean. “What is Chon-Nom in English? What people call people from rural areas in the U.S.?”

Jessy and I did some researches and found this word, “hillbilly.” Let me guess its etymology! I think this is referring to a person whose name is bill (one of the most common names just like Joe) and who lives on a hill. How perfect is it? Hope my guess is correct.

Anyway, after that conversation, I thought I would remember it. But, I forgot.

Luckily, Ashka posted the picture that you see here on her facebook timeline. Wow! Wow! It was a moment of eureka for me. Thank you, Ashka, for posting this because this totally refreshed my memory. And, of course, I do need to thank Hillary and Bill Clinton. Than you guys! Because of you guys, now I feel pretty confident that I will remember this word.

What do you think? Actually, if you yourself are a hillbilly, then you should totally know this word. Hey, after all, I could consider myself as a hillbilly too. Pittsburgh is a small city. One may argue this but at least to me this is true. πŸ™‚

25 Oct

arm candy

Who taught: Jake and Andrew

arm candy

arm candy

It’s getting closer to Halloween. There are a few things that accompany Halloween. What are they? In my opinion, they are kids and candies. In Halloween evening, kids walk around to trick-or-treat. As a result, they all get candies. I have bought some candies for that.

Before I get into today’s expression part, let me ask a question. What do you think when you see candies? They are hard to resist, right? Even looking at them makes you happy and smile. Don’t you agree? That is the feeling you should have for today’s expression. Keep that feeling!

Yesterday, Jake texted me to let me know an expression that Andrew just learned. How cool is it that I get to learn one that my American friend just got to know?

It was “arm candy.” When I saw Jake’s text with this expression, the first thing I thought about was this, “eye candy.” So, it was not that hard for me to have some feeling about this expression. You know what I mean. I knew that it would be something about an attractive person. Then, my question was “what’s up with ‘arm’ part here?”

If there is a candy that is physically attached to my arm, then that would be my arm candy. But, we know candy here means an attractive person.

Let’s think about a situation where you have a girlfriend who is very attractive and you go to a big party with her. (Assuming you are a boy.) You would most probably show up arm-in-arm. There it is. She is your arm candy.

So, would Jessy be my arm candy? Is it OK for me to call Jessy my arm candy? I am not sure. Honestly, I am not sure how I would feel if Jessy calls me her arm candy. Well, at least that means I look attractive. Hopefully!

What do you think? Do you want to be someone’s arm candy? Or, do you have your arm candy?