From Korea with Love

"I carry your heart with me… always."

만우절: “April Fool’s Day” in SK

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Back in the Philippines, I didn’t know about April Fool’s Day. It isn’t as popular in my country as it is in South Korea. April Fool’s Day (also known as All Fool’s Day), which is celebrated on April 1st, is believed to have begun in France, but nowadays, people from all over the world follow the tradition of playing practical jokes on one another.


Last year, my husband played a trick on me. It made me upset, but before I could strangle him, he told me he was just kidding, because it was 만우절 (April Fool’s Day in Korean). 만 (man) means “many” or “much”, and 우 means “foolish”. Put the words together and the real meaning will be “very foolish”.

Today was my turn to pull Mr. Ra’s (my husband’s) leg… and I succeeded! ㅋㅋㅋ … ^^

Here’s my prank which I sent through Kakaotalk:

164983_624302487584432_715775560_n modifiedAs expected, my husband called me. The first thing he asked was, “Where are you now?” I got lost in Korea more than twice, so it was easy to make him believe that I was lost again. (No taxis, no signs, no bus stops? C’mon!)

His reaction was priceless when I said, “I’m in the house, watching Supernatural. HAPPY APRIL FOOL’S DAY, HONEY!”

After we talked on the phone, he sent me a text.


My husband says “Ya!” (You! or Hey!) to me only when I annoy him, but I don’t think my prank annoyed him. It got him worried for a while, but when he found out it was just a joke, he couldn’t stop laughing and mumbling in Korean.

On 만우절, Korean students like to play practical jokes on their teachers. One of my former students in the academy pulled the “pen-with-vanishing-ink” prank on me. That time I didn’t know about April Fool’s Day, so I had no idea that accidentally spilling ink on my newly bought blouse was part of Mark’s trick. It was not until I heard his classmates’ stifled laughter that I realized what was going on. I knew the ink spill on my blouse would soon disappear, but I didn’t want to spoil the fun, so I pretended that I was furious. I think I frightened my students a bit, but hey, I was joking, too. We all had a good laugh that day.

Internet and text jokes are also passed around on  만우절. April Fool’s shenanigans are common among Korean friends, mostly youngsters.

They say that some Korean teenagers choose to reveal their feelings to their “crushes” on  만우절, so if they get rejected, they can bounce back from a bruised ego by saying that it was just an April Fool joke. (Makes sense… ^^)



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