A Short Linguistic Anecdote

March 1, 2010

So last Friday, my friends and I headed over to City Hall Station to go have a look see at the Warhol Exhibit at the National Museum of Art. I have no pictures of that, since cameras were not allowed, though I did miss the opportunity to take a lascivious photograph (thanks for the word choice, Soo) of a gigantic Velvet Underground banana. Ah, one has to live with one’s regrets. Anyway, before we headed to the museum, we decided to grab something to eat near the station. There were a few kimbap places around, a bibimbap place to the side, but looming large in the distance was this huge black monolith which said 누 듵 누 듵, which reads as, “noodeul noodeul.” We thought, great! Noodles! I love repetitive restaurant names: KogiKogi, TacoTaco, NomNom Truck, anything that has to say what they do twice, has to be twice as good, right?

Visions of ramyun danced in our heads, but as we inched closer to the monolith, we noticed the outside decor was a little strange? Peculiar? Racy?

Like, why are there large breasted cartoon characters adorning the side of the building? No, seriously, why can I see that drawing’s tits?

Then there was a realization.


They don’t mean, “Noodle Noodle.”

They mean…

“Nudl Nudl”

Or I think, “Nude Nude.” It’s “a business club,” which is a euphemism for “strip joint” (but maybe they make you wear your salaryman outfit).

And we were kinda not hungry for that kind of… sustenance?

So that concludes this story on humorous Hangul homonym confusion.

Anyway, I guess this experience is on par to that time I was wandering around Yongsan after a jjimjilbang night, and thought,

“Man, why are all those brightly lit pink hair salons open this late at night?”

“April, that’s the red light district.”



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