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튀는 아이, t=i

This is a photo I took in 광주(Gwangju), the city I was born in, when I visited my parents the other day. I always love the humor found in these kinds of signboards and store names because they make it so much easier to remember the names and also show the effort that the store owner(or someone else) must have made to come up with such phrases or names.

What you see is [ t = i ], which means nothing in English. But if you pronounce it, it’s a different story 😀 The mathematical sign ” =(equal) ” is read as “는” in Korean, as in “저 ㅇㅇㅇ입니다”


So if you read it in Korean, it’s “티(t)는 아이(i)”.

And as you can see in the bottom part of the signboard, the name is supposed to mean ‘튀는 아이’.

Of course there’s a clear distinction between 티 and 튀 since 티 is [ TI ] and 튀 is [ TWI ], but if you say them both just quickly, they sound similar.

And the expression 튀는 아이 is very interesting too, because 튀는 (or 튀다 in its basic form) is not in the dictionary yet. If you look it up in your dictionary, it will say “to jump” “to run away” or “to spatter” but 튀다 in daily conversations often means “to stand out” or “to be unique or peculiar in style”.

튀는 옷 = very unique clothes (it’s NOT some clothes running away)
튀는 패션 = peculiar fashion (it’s NOT some fashion jumping up and down)
튀는 얼굴 = a very unique face, a face that you won’t easily forget (it’s NOT a face that spatters)

So 튀는 아이 means “a kid that stands out or is noticeable” (because of his/her clothes – this is what the store name is supposed to mean), so you can guess that this store is a clothes shop for kids. 😀

I really loved this name, and wanted to share it with all of you.

Thank you for reading! 😀