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?

18 Oct


Who taught: Kara and Jake



In everyday life here in the U.S., I hear a lot of words I had never even seen when I was studying English in Korea. I am very positive it is because my focus of the study was literary English.

So, I would say colloquial English can be a whole different animal for you to experience once you live in a English-speaking country.

Maybe it is only me. But, many of those words used colloquially sound very funny.

A few days ago, it was Jake’s birthday. Well, that’s what Facebook told me. On his timeline, Kara said, “Bday smooch!”

I thought to myself, “Hmm… smooch. that sounds funny. What does it mean?” One of the things I do when I hear or see a new word is try not to look it up before I really think about what it could mean.

My guess with regard to this word was that it is simply a way to call your close friend. You know, like “dude” or “buddy.”

Being pretty positive about my guess, I also wrote on Jake’s timeline, “Happy Bday smooch! What’s smooch?”

I know what you guys are thinking now. What a mistake! Two days ago, I caught up with my friends including Jake and he asked for me to actually smooch him. Of course, I did not. Get your mind out of the gutter! Can you guess what it means? Let me give you a hint. It is an onomatopoeic word, I believe. So, when would you hear the sound that is very similar to “smooch.” Too hard? All right, here is another hint. Think about your lips when you kiss your boy friend or girl friend very loudly with a lot of love. Now, you get it?

It simply means “a loud kiss” or “to kiss loudly.”

Let me tell you again to make sure there is no misunderstanding. I did not smooch Jake. 🙂 One suggestion for you! Why don’t you smooch your loved one today? When you do, pay attention to the sound. That may help you to remember the word.

Have fun, guys, smooching!

27 Sep


Who taught: Jeff, Phil and Jake



I am thinking of getting a puppy. I mean, I have been thinking about it for a while but this time it is a lot more serious.

Why? I blame Mandie. 🙂 Last week, she sent factbook messages with some links to breeders of basset hound, the kind of breed that she has. Looking at puppies, Jessy and I got side-tracked to other breeds too such as labrador retriever and golden retriever. We saw some videos of different puppies. So adorable.

We want a breed that is really patient and friendly with children. To make sure, I searched for it and there were some other people asking the same question. And, naturally, there are many answers to those questions.

Many people said “Mutts are great with children.” Well, I thought mutt is another kind of pure dog breed. Surfing the web to find what mutt is, I found that it means a dog of many mixed breeds. In Korean, we say 잡종 (Jap-Jong).

After I did those researches, I talked to some of my friends that I would get a dog. And, they (Jeff, Phil and Jake) did ask me whether I am going to get a mutt or a pure breed.

Had I not done any research, I would have not been able to understand when they said “mutt.”

I am sure most of my friends in Korea would think by now I would be totally fine with English. Well, not yet. Look at this word. I had no idea what it means until I get into this serious process of getting a dog. Every time I try to do something new here in the U.S., I get to learn new words and expressions. Fortunately…. (I am being sarcastic here)…. I have a lot that I have not tried in the U.S.

Oh… here is another thing. Mutt does not just mean a dog. It could also be used to describe a person. In fact, it is also the case that Korean people say “잡종” to describe a person. As you can imagine, you would want to be careful to do so. In the last 6 years, I have never heard any of my friends using this word to mean a person. So, be careful!

I would get a golden retriever puppy. If I did, I will definitely update you. Stay tuned, my friends!

08 May

homeboy or homie

Who taught: Phil, Shawn and Jake

Homeboy (source: http://faloutboylover.deviantart.com/)

While living in the U.S. for the last 6 years, I have made very good friends. Many of them work or used to work at Vivisimo, my previous company. About two weeks ago, IBM announced to acquire Vivisimo. Wow! Great news! As employees, my friends and I got some stock options. Due to the acquisition, we got to know that we will make some money. To be clear, it is not a lot at all. 🙂

Anyway, as we heard the news, Phil tweeted about drinking out of a brown bag. I replied one of his tweets and he said, “Don’t forget to pour one for your hommies.”

My initial impression was that it has to be my wife. Hommie sounds like “home” and my wife and I live together at our home. So, I thought it means wife. But, to make sure, I replied to him, asking “What is hommies?”

A few minutes later, Jake replied, “It’s spelled “homie”. Short for “home boy”. OK… sounds good. But then what is home boy? Here is what I thought. This should definitely mean my children, especially my son. Hmm…. I do not have a son. This does not make sense at all again.

So, I replied again, “What is home boy? Are you my home boy?” Shawn replied to this tweet, saying “I am most definitely your home boy.”

At that point, I had to look it up. As I was seeing the definition, I was like, “Oh…. I get it.” Can you guess what it means? It means a close friend. It makes sense, right? If you have a very close friend, you would spend a lot of time with him at your home or his home, right? A home boy! Nice expression, huh?

My last question! How about girls? Do people also say “homegirl”?

Phil, Jake and Shawn, you are definitely my homies! Patrick.. don’t feel left out. As you can see from the pic, you are my homeboy too. 🙂

01 May

rediscovering a word series 3: sexy

Who taught: Patrick, Rachel, Andrew, Beth, Mark, Jake and Carol

Let me start with a challenge for you! From today and from this moment, watch TV shows or movies that are in English. I know you want to watch shows and movies that are in your mother tongue. Do you know why? It is because you are comfortable. Of course, it is. You have a choice. One asks you to stay in your comfort zone which is easy and a lot of people do and the other takes your strong will to get out of the comfort zone. Trust me on this. If you make a decision and be persistent, your English will get better. Additionally, make watching them be one of your everyday routines just like you go to a bathroom every morning. Oh, you go in the evening? Whatever way it is. It has to be a routine. If not, chances are you will fall back into your comfort zone again.

Hope you take my challenge and make a good progress soon! So, had you watch American TV shows, one of the words you would hear a lot would be “sexy.” I swear that people on TV use it so often that I strongly believed that I could use this anytime to any person.

So, a few days ago, when I met my friends, I used it. Of course, I hesitated but thought it should be OK. Oops! I was very very wrong.

Here is what happened. Stella, Patrick’s daughter, was having fun in a chair and her hair became out of control. Suddenly, I remembered an expression, “sexy bed-hair.” You know… when you wake up in the morning, you hair is totally unorganized and messy but, to your significant other, it SHOULD look sexy, right? I will leave it up to your imagination what would happen after that look. 🙂

Well, I said, “Stella got sexy bed-hair.” As soon as I said, “Oh no…. Terry.. Sexy?”

So far, it sounds like I am innocent. Don’t you think? The issue was Stella is only one year old.

My friends told me that people do not use “sexy” to a little kid. My non-native English speaker friends, be careful! Just because you hear a specific word very often on TV, it does not mean that you can use it all the time. There are times that you cannot use them which is not easy to learn. I guess you gotta just experience just like me. Poor Terry.

Patrick and Rachel, Stella is so cute and I love you guys.

By the way, are there any other times that I should not say sexy? #confused.