BILLY JIN: Hello, everyone! Not too long ago we asked our viewers if they had any questions regarding KWOW (via Facebook). Today we’re having a Q&A session with Professor Oh. Guess who’s the moderator? Me, Billy Jin! In honor of our viewers’ privacy, only their last names will be mentioned.
To start off, I myself have a question. Professor Oh, how do you feel now that it’s been a week since the final episode of KWOW (Season 1)?
PROFESSOR OH: Briefly put, I miss KWOW. This past week I felt like there was a hole in my heart. When something becomes a part of your lifestyle then suddenly vanishes, you feel this emptiness. I don’t mean to sound dramatic, but I guess honesty can sound dramatic. Especially in a world where people try to conceal and deny their innermost thoughts. But dear viewers, do not be too sad for KWOW’s end! We’ve got a new show coming up. We won’t be just teaching Korean anymore, but expanding to other topics. So stay tuned!
BILLY JIN: The next question comes from Lady Higginson. She asks, "How did you get started doing KWOW Wednesdays? Was it your idea or were you hired to do it? How did the show come into the world?"
PROFESSOR OH: To make a long story short, yes, KWOW Wednesday was my own initiative. No one pays me to do it. After seeing the popularity of the first “Let’s Learn Korean with Professor Oh” lesson, I wanted to release something for my viewers on a weekly basis. I've been meaning make more videos years earlier, but I was occupied with college at the time. Last summer I sat down and brainstormed on what would be fun and useful for the audience. After writing a long list of potential show ideas and names, I decided to use KWOW because it sounded kind of like KPOP, the reason why many people want to learn Korean in the first place. Little did I know of “Jersey Shore’s” JWOWW as well as its other similarities. Let’s just say there’s nothing new under the sun. You think you have an original idea but really, all ideas are recycled and revamped. That’s fine. It’s life. And life is full of coincidences.
BILLY JIN: Lady Ksamawati asks, "What do you do besides KWOW? Do you really make these videos all by yourself?"
PROFESSOR OH: Indeed, KWOW is a one-woman show. Every so often I’d have my friends hold the camera or make guest appearances. The final episode #60 was a special case where we had four people, including myself, shoot the footage. We wanted to end the show with a big bang. And yes, that was an intentional K-pop band reference! I also have my mom and my friend read the script before I finalize it. It’s good to have someone else look at your work with a fresh eye. But as far as writing, directing, filming, acting, editing, and whatnot, yes, I do it all by myself. Aside from KWOW, I like to read and explore the world.
BILLY JIN: Mr. Esteban asks, "Professor Oh, why are you so pretty and knowledgeable in Korean?"
PROFESSOR OH: Thank you for your sweet words. My face is a combination of eyeliner and my parents’ genes. Though I could’ve been luckier. Haha. I’ll pass on your compliments to them. I’m not as smart as you think, but thank you very much. Anyone can be knowledgeable in anything they put their mind on. Passion, patience, and perseverance are your best friends.
BILLY JIN: Mr. Esteban also asks, "Is Taekwon Do a relative of yours? He seems like a tough, manly guy. I look up to him."
PROFESSOR OH (shouts lightly towards the kitchen): Taekwon Do, do you want to answer this one?
TAEKWON DO (looks up while chewing on kimchi): Esteban, dude, thanks for looking up to me. I’ll do what I can to stay manly and tough. Just for you, bro. By the way Professor Oh and I aren’t blood-related. We know each other since she’s best friends with my girlfriend Billy Jin. (puts another piece of kimchi in his mouth)
BILLY JIN: Taekwon, don’t eat all the kimchi. Save some for me! Continuing on, Mr. Ashby asks, "What was your first language? Because you seem real good at both English and Korean."
PROF. OH: Though I was born and raised in California, Korean was my first language. I learned English once I entered elementary school. Though I’ve lived in America my whole life, I’ve always tried to keep in touch with my roots. No matter where you are, if you want to learn Korean or anything really, you can become a pro. While it helps immensely to live in the country of the language you’re learning, it’s possible to become skilled at anything when you put your mind to it, regardless of your whereabouts. Don’t let location define who you are.
BILLY JIN: Mr. Hollinsworth asks, "If someone met you for the first time and you took their breath away, what would you like to hear them say to you?"
PROFESSOR OH: I’d like for that person to say, “Let’s go get AYCE Korean barbeque. It’s on me.” Who doesn't like free meals?
BILLY JIN: Mr. Colby asks, "How long does it take to write a KWOW script?"
PROFESSOR OH: Every episode demanded something different. A simple 2-3 minute video can take three hours to write. Sometimes even five. It’s amazing how many hours it can take to write one minute. When you make your own videos, you gain an appreciation for movies. You start to understand how a two hour-long movie can take months to film.
BILLY JIN: Mr. Colby also asks, "Is it easy to come up with material? Does anyone help you with ideas? Unrelated to KWOW, have you heard of Eat Your Kimchi with Simon and Martina?"
PROFESSOR OH: Most of the time, the material is based upon YOU, the viewer’s requests. Without our audience, there would be no KWOW. And yes, I know of Simon and Martina. I have a particular liking to their sweet dog Spudgy. Hehe.
BILLY JIN: Mr. Kimberlin asks, "Is there a Mr. KWOW?"
PROFESSOR OH: Mr. KWOW! Can you come over here and say hello?
TAEKWON DO (still in the kitchen): Hello, again. I represent all the men in the show. So I guess that makes me Mr. KWOW. Man, I’m real hungry. This kimchi and rice is not enough. I’m gonna go get some food. Maybe bossam.
BILLY JIN: I’ve got a great idea! Let’s have dinner in K-town tonight. We’ve yet to celebrate the end of KWOW!
GRANNY KIM (appears out of nowhere when she hears a word related to “party” and “celebrate”): Yeayaaa! Food and drinks on me tonight. Promise me we’ll go to the dance floor afterwards.
BILLY JIN: You bet, Granny Kim! Thanks to everyone for submitting questions. If you have any thoughts or additional questions, let us know. Feel free to write them in the comment section below. Maybe we’ll do another Q&A session soon. And if you see us in Koreatown LA tonight, don’t be shy and say hello! Anyong!