May events 2006

We’re just about to get into May, and there’s lots going on in London. Keep an eye on my What’s On page. There’s something to suit all tastes. Probably the most unusual thing to be happening is the Contemporary Korean Ceramics exhibition as part of the Korean festival. Do please support that event. Wherever possible […]

Conspiracy theories

Tom Coyner has a mischievous speculation in one of his recent email news updates. I sometimes wonder if Pres Roh and PM Koizumi have these gentleman agreements, off the record of course, that allow each of them to act ridiculous so as to pander to local politics while knowing that the other politician is giving […]

SG Wannabe 3rd album

I know I’m not going to make myself popular with some of the visitors to this site, but I’m not going to give this CD a rave review. If I say that it’s the sort of music a teenager could put on the CD player and not have her father say “what are you listening […]

Crying Nut: Best — Wild Wild Live

I’m doing my preparatory work for the Korean festival, and put this on my CD player last night when I should have been going to bed. The resulting explosion from the speakers can’t have endeared me to my neighbours. The sound of Crying Nut reminds me a bit of the Kaiser Chiefs in I predict […]

Mayday transport wanted

As I write this, I’m listening to Lee Soo Young’s 7th Album. And while there are elements which are identifiably and obviously Korean (someone needs to do a detailed analysis of the harmonic progressions in Korean romantic popular music to substantiate the claim that there is such a thing as identifiably Korean music, but there […]

Think, Korea

I can’t help feeling that the Koreans have been taken for a bit of a ride with this Think Korea 2006 thing. I’d be interested to know for sure which government is investing more money in the programme, but I’d be willing to bet that it’s the Koreans. And let’s look at who’s getting what […]

Korean marketing skills

Korea may be the most wired nation on earth (or is it the second-most?), but Koreans in London have yet to embrace new technology. As noted in previous rants, there has been absolutely nothing official on the web which gives any decent information on the Korean concert in Croydon on 1 May. Well, yesterday I […]

Never trust KBS. Ever.

Sorry to disappoint you (and myself), but the alleged concert by Lee Soo Young, SG Wannabe etc in London on 24 May is a figment of KBS’s fevered imagination. Trying to find anyone in London who knows anything about Lee Soo Young’s appearance at all is a huge struggle anyway (and details are STILL not […]

A little gripe about CD packaging

I’m turning into one of those grumpy old men who gets annoyed by the stupidest of things. A very trivial rant today prompted by the latest delivery from YesAsia (I’m mugging up in preparation for the K-pop concert which I hope is happening on 24 May but which no-one apart from KBS seems to know […]

Mixed marriages

As mentioned a few days ago, the appearance of Hines Ward in Korea recently provoked a certain amount of debate. As it happens, statistics published in the Korea Times say that 14% of Korean marriages in 2005 were international, while attitudes are getting more positive. However, there is a darker side to this — with […]

The cost of news

I thought I might investigate the cost of a subscription to the Yonhap News service. I’m a bit stingy when it comes to paying for things on the web, and would never consider paying for FT.com; but if it’s going to be cheap then I might consider it. So I shoot off an email to […]

Saying Sorry with cash

I haven’t been following the Hyundai Slush Fund story, but Hyundai hopes to have drawn a line under it with a $1bn charitable donation. Samsung apparently adopted a similar approach to the tune of $840mn last year. Lone Star, meanwhile, is making a $100mn donation as a goodwill gesture in relation to its KEB purchase […]

DPRK e-bulletin 21 April 2006: superdollars

The DPRK’s London embassy speaks on the subject of Western accusations of drug-smuggling and currency counterfeiting: Pyongyang, April 19 (KCNA) — The people’s security institution in the DPRK tasked to protect by law the socialist system, the life and soul of its people, tightly holding the arms for state security, is following with a high […]

Campaign for better soaps on UK TV

In the past day or so I’ve had my first unsolicited visitors sending me email – and it’s not spam. Thanks for your kind comments, Alice and Dana. Alice is a lady on a mission. Her mission: a campaign to get the BBC to buy Jewel in the Palace and show it on British TV. […]