Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Making Your Way in Korea: Ordering Food: "Tell Me That's Not Awesome!"

Under the "Awesome Things about Living in Korea" file, Otto Silver, at "I, Foreigner" has a helpful, informative video about ordering food to your home in Korea.  Takeout Delivery is a wonderfully cheap, and convenient part of living in Korea, and it's not hard.

**Update/correction: I am told, by the Otto himself, that it is not him in the video, but simply a video he found online.  My bad.**

Here is Otto's Video [correction: the video otto found], which goes step by step through the process of ordering food, and even tells you what to do with the dishes afterward.

Here's all you need to know:

1.  Enough Korean to read the restaurant menus they stick on your door or hang on your apartment door handle.  (And you have ABSOLUTELY NO EXCUSE for not learning this much Korean, when the Korean lettering system is so easy to learn.  Go here.  Or go here to do it by video.  It's a bit "Golly gee, this is SOOOO simple!" but it's well laid out.  It doesn't take very long, especially compared to how long it took you to read English: King Sejong, the guy who helped design them, said, "These twenty-eight letters are so simple and precise that the wise can master them in one morning and even the fool can learn them in ten days."  So quit your whining, quit procrastinating, and learn them, before we have to get Mr. T to pity you.)
2. The address of your apartment, in Korean.  Get your Korean coworker or your boss to help you with this if you're not sure.
3. The numbers, so you can tell how many of each thing you want.
4. The Korean names of a few foods you like.

Here's all you need to have:
1. A phone.
2. A flyer from a restaurant.
3. A little cash.
4. An appetite.

Otto uses the phrase "Hangug-eo chogum arayo"  "한국어 조금 알아요" which means "I speak a little Korean."  To Otto's very helpful video, I want to add two phrases that would also be useful in this situation (and many others):

"Hangug-eo chal moatt-hae-yo" "한국어  못 해요"= literally, "Korean well can't speak" -- I don't speak Korean well.


"Cheon-cheon-hee mal-hae-juseyo"  "천천히 말해 주세요"= literally, "Slowly speech-make-please" (juseyo actually is the polite form of "give," so it literally means "give me slow speech please" or paraphrased, "please speak slowly"... I'm not sure if that's grammatically perfect...but when you're telling someone you can't speak a language well, bad grammar might help you get the point across more emphatically, anyway.

Here's Mr. Ed, to help you with those two phrases.  The pronunciation is Roboseyo-CanucKorean, rather than perfect Seoul Korean, but it'll get you through.

Have fun ordering your food!

Plus, Otto has a kind of funny address: there's a little squeaker noise in there.  I wonder what neighbourhood he's in: maybe this guy lives nearby.


Visiting Korean Stadiums said...

Erm, that is not me in the clip. I am so camera shy that I can count the photos of myself on one hand, maybe two, so putting myself on YouTube is a big no-no.

This is just a clip that I found with the StumbleUpon service. I thought it would be nice to show how easy it is for lazy people to live in Korea sometimes.

Thanks for making me look very kind and helpful and amazingly clever though. :)

(Jon)athan said...

Just ran across your article. Here is another service that just opened up that was in the Korea Herald. www.koreabites.com online ordering for non-korean speakers