Certain regions of South Korea have just survived the coldest November recorded in the last 20 years. The Kangwon Ilbo reports that the temperature in the last week of November dropped to as low as 7 degrees Fahrenheit, marking the country’s coldest November day since 1993.
As a result of the cold snap, frugal Koreans not keen on seeing their electricity bills skyrocket have been getting creative in their ways to keep warm. “Bed tents,” which are small, specially designed tents that are installed on top of a bed to insulate a sleeping Korean from cold air, have become a big ticket item at department stores.
The tents come in various types and prices range anywhere from $30 to a few hundred dollars; department stores in Korea sold over four million tents in just two weeks. The bed tents have become so popular that some (even more frugal) Koreans are making their own tents using a large sheet of fabric and a step-by-step tutorial available on the Internet.
As tensions rise in Asia, a look at how Japanese, South Koreans and Chinese view each other
Pew Research Center
Vice President Joseph Biden is in Asia on a trip that will take him to Japan, South Korea and China for high-level meetings that come at a time when tensions have ratcheted up in the region over China’s decision to declare an air defense zone over disputed islands – just one of the issues underlying the unease among the three countries.
A key goal of Biden’s trip, in addition to trying to defuse the tensions, will be to make clear, especially to America’s Japanese and Korean allies, the Obama administration’s strategy in East Asia – once described as a “pivot” of U.S. attention away from the Middle East to their part of the world, and now referred to by officials as a “rebalancing.”
China’s military power is regarded with alarm in Japan and South Korea. Nearly all Japanese (96%) see China’s power as bad for their country as do 91% of South Koreans, according to a Pew Research Center survey this spring. Underlying that sentiment are the territorial disputes over islands in the East China Sea. More than eight-in-ten (82%) Japanese see these disputes as a big problem, as do 77% of South Koreans.
Friends Of Queens Woman Killed In Train Derailment Mourn Loss
NY1 News (New York)
Friends described 34-year-old Kisook Ahn as an angel taken too soon.
“Most of the people, they cry whenever they hear about it,” said Yeon Kyung Lim, a nurse at Elmhurst Hospital who was Ahn’s mentor while she studied to become a nurse practitioner at Lehman College.
Reading the last text Ahn sent her, she said the hardworking student looked out for everyone.
President Obama, Stop Separating and Deporting Our Families
Dear President Obama,
I am Ju Hong, the “heckler” that interrupted your speech at the Betty Ong Center in San Francisco last week. I spoke up not out of disrespect, however, either for you or our country. No, I spoke up — and am writing to you now — to ask that you use your executive order to halt deportations for 11.5 million undocumented immigrant families.
My family came to the United States from South Korea when I was 11 years old. Like many immigrants, my mother brought me to this country to seek a better life for her children.
I graduated from UC Berkeley, and am now pursuing a Master’s degree in Public Administration at San Francisco State University. I have lived in America now for 13 years. I consider this country as my home. During my senior year in high school, however, I learned that my family had overstayed a tourist visa. We are undocumented immigrants.
Bitcoin Changes Hands In South Korea
Wall Street Journal
Bitcoin will get you bread in South Korea, thanks to a bakery in Incheon that took the landmark step of allowing customers to pay with the world’s most common virtual currency.
Lee Jong-soo, who runs Paris Baguette, a franchise bakery, said the first transaction involving the virtual money happened early Tuesday morning. As of mid-Tuesday, three more people had purchased bread using Bitcoin.
Mr. Lee said the idea of embracing the virtual currency came during a family dinner with his two grown-up sons a month ago. His younger son, who studied finance in the U.S., brought up the issue and suggested the bakery accept Bitcoin as a payment method. The elder son, a software developer, quickly developed an app that automatically calculates the exchange rate of Korean won to Bitcoin.
Huawei’s South Korea Project Draws U.S. Scrutiny
Two Senate Democrats who head committees overseeing U.S. national security are asking the Obama administration to assess the potential threat from a broadband project in South Korea that will use equipment from Chinese electronics maker Huawei Technologies Co.
Senators Dianne Feinstein, chairman of the Select Committee on Intelligence, and Robert Menendez, who leads the Committee on Foreign Relations, sent a letter last week to Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, Secretary of State John Kerry and James Clapper, the director of national intelligence, expressing concern that Huawei’s involvement creates risks for the U.S.-Korea alliance including U.S. troops based on the peninsula.
“Maintaining the integrity of telecommunications infrastructure is critical to the operational effectiveness of this important security alliance,” the two senators wrote on Nov. 27 in the letter obtained by Bloomberg News. “Reports that Huawei has been selected to develop and/or supply the Republic of Korea’s advanced LTE telecommunications backbone raise serious questions and potential security concerns.”
South Korea Sets Admissions Record for Homegrown Films
South Korean cinemas recorded nearly 115.99 million admissions for homegrown films as of Tuesday morning, overtaking last year’s total of 114.61 million and setting a new record.
In 2012, local movies had topped 100 million admissions for the first time and earned $791 million (836.1 billion won) in box office. So far this year, the box office for homegrown Korean films amounts to $784.86 million, according to the Korean Film Council.
Eight of this year’s top 10 films were homegrown. The exceptions were Iron Man 3 and World War Z, which currently come in third and 10th, respectively, in the year’s box-office ranking.
Watch Ailee’s Newest English Interview from Australia: Hints at 2014 Comeback
Award winning singer Ailee has her first ever Australian interview backstage at the 2k13 Feel Korea Concert in Perth on November 30 with Johnny Au from the AU review.
Watch as the talented Ailee talks about her chart topping single “U&I” and her “comfortable” experience recording with top producer Shinsadong Tiger. The star also hints of a comeback soon in 2014 and gives a special Christmas message for her devoted fans known as “Aileeans.”
‘This is where Bing Crosby’s buried,’ says my mom from the front seat of my middle aunt’s car. Mother is feeling triumphant because she’s conned me into a twofer. I’d been guilt-tripped into attending Catholic mass and now we were on our way to visit her parents’ gravesites. I should have brought my own car — a Corolla rental — but I’d felt so pleased with myself, so pious and doting to accompany my 65-year-old mother to church, that I never imagined she’d pull a stunt like this.
My youngest aunt is in the back with me, clutching three cellophane-bundled bouquets of flowers in her tiny, star-shaped paws. All four of us are wearing enormous, aggressively Asian sun hats. Mom and I got ours from the Korean dollar-store the day before. They are identical. I picked mine first — an angular, stylised, straw Regency bonnet that looks cool if you dress sort of goth and deconstructed — and she got hers to match. I thought about switching but relented. From the back there is no mistaking that we are together. We don’t look cool.
Kim Yu-na Ready to Reveal Olympic Programs in Zagreb
Figure skater Kim Yu-na is set to leave for Croatia on Tuesday to compete in the Golden Spin of Zagreb, which will take place for four days from Thursday.
She will premier her new programs for the Olympic season there after withdrawing from several competitions earlier due to a foot injury.
The short program for the ladies’ singles is scheduled for Friday, with the free skate due to take place the following day.
Lim Chang-yong released by Cubs
Korean pitcher Lim Chan-yong, who sought to find success in Major League at the age of 37 coming off major elbow surgery, will not be given another chance by the Chicago Cubs.
The submarine reliever was released by the Cubs on Monday after spending the entire season with them, mostly rehabbing in the minor leagues.
Lim made his big league debut as a September call-up, and did not impress with an earned run average (ERA) of 5.40 over six games. He did not figure in any decisions and his strikeouts (5) to walk (7) ratio left much to be desired.
Vitamin T: Chef Roy Choi’s Original Spicy Pork Taco from the Kogi Truck
Los Angeles Magazine
It was almost five years ago, to the day—on November 22, 2008—that I had my first taste of Kogi BBQ. Last week, I was at Skylight Books listening to chef Roy Choi read from his first book, L.A. Son, My Life, My City, My Food, and outside the bookstore the Kogi truck idled, waiting for eager readers to get hungry. I hadn’t actually ordered from the truck since that afternoon in ’08. The only other times I’d had a Kogi taco was at events where “Papi” is known to hand deliver his food to everyone.
L.A. Son chronicles Choi’s journey from Seoul to soul food, from the very real trappings of level one gang life for young men in L.A., and from lost and listless on the streets to, at last, found in the kitchen.
I’ve witnessed Choi’s rise from the shy chef that served us back in 2008, to the confused and out of place award recipient clad in all green cholo gear at Star Chefs back in 2010, to the confident speaker I listened to at Skylight Books last week.
The mother of a 9-year-old child is filing a $10 million lawsuit against the judge in charge of her custody case, saying it has dragged on for far too long.
Maggie Rhee Karn, a public relations executive, claimed that Manhattan family Court Referee Marva Burnett had allowed the case to go on for three years, reportedly costing her more than $200,000 in legal fees. State law requires custody proceedings to be complete within 90 days, according to the New York Post.
The 44-year-old mother filed for full custody in 2009 and has made over 40 court appearances since then. Her husband, with whom she is also involved in divorce proceedings, counter-sued for half-custody.
Despite the judge never declaring her an unfit parent, Maggie had only been able to see her daughter, Sarah, during the daytime on alternate weekends, while the child’s father, Kenneth Karn, has been given temporary custody. Continue Reading »
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un with his uncle Jang Song-thaek during a military parade in 2012. Photo via The Guardian.
North Korea dismissed Jang Song-thaek, a one-time mentor for leader Kim Jong-un and a right-hand man for his father, Kim Jong-il, from various positions within the dictatorial regime, South Korea’s National Intelligence Service told Parliament on Tuesday.
The administrative department of North Korea’s ruling party publicly executed two of Jang’s deputies on charges of “corruption and anti-party activities” last month. The executions paved the way for the regime to strip Jang’s power, although various sources familiar with the inner workings of the North Korean government have speculated that Kim is simply wielding power to affirm his authority.
“I don’t think Jang’s deputies were executed for mere corruption,” Cheong Seong-chang, a senior analyst at Sejong Institute in South Korea, told the New York Times. “They were executed because they established power. This case shows that Jang has never been a ‘de facto No. 2.’ It shows that Kim Jong-un’s power is solid and the North Korean elite will become more fervent to prove their loyalty to him.” Continue Reading »
The party of the year is here! Not going to Audrey and KoreAm‘s annual gala, Unforgettable? You’re still invited to the exclusive after party!
What better way to end the year than by partying with some of the most admired Asian celebrities?
Come celebrate with Tiger JK, Yoon Mirae, David Choi, Clara C., Jason Chen, Joseph Vincent, Wong Fu Productions, Dia Frampton and her sister Meg, Arden Cho, Lindsay Price and many more. You won’t want to miss this!
Unforgettable 2013 After Party
Music, Dancing, and a Full (Cash) Bar
Bronze Room in Park Plaza Hotel
607 SOUTH PARK VIEW STREET
LOS ANGELES, CA 90057
Saturday, December 7, 2013
9:00 pm – 1:30 am
Guest List Only
Admission is FREE to those on the guest list. SPACE IS LIMITED — RESERVE YOUR SPOT NOW!