What do you mean that I die?

Hi. When I was a little girl, I fell sick quite often. Sometimes I had more serious conditions like pneumonia but most of the time, I was just weak. My skin complexion was pale and any physical activities were out of question. It wasn't all depressing though. There were some funny moments because of my lousy health. I remember one day when I was in fourth or fifth grade. That day, one boy was teasing me a lot and it got one of my friends really angry. My friend pushed the boy hard and yelled at him. "Stop teasing her! She is going to die soon!"... I was like O.o "Thanks dear, but I didn't know that I was going to die..." I don't remember who she was any more. If I did, I would love to meet her and say that I still exist. :)

What do you mean that I die?!
내가 죽기는 왜 죽어요?!

내가, nega, I
죽기는, jukginun, dying (죽다)
왜, whe, why
죽어요, jugoyo, do I die?

내가 죽기는 왜 죽어요?!
nega jukginum whe jugoyo?!

죽다 and 죽기 is kind of the same relationship as die and dying. You can transform most of verbs in this manner, 기 instead of 다. For example, 먹다(eat) -> 먹기(eating) 보다(see) -> 보기(seeing)

As a saying, "something -기는 왜 something" is to deny, correct or express frustration over the situation that is about to happen. For example:

A: Let's break up.
B: 우리가 헤어지기는 왜 헤어져요!

As a slight variation of this expression, "something -기는 뭘 something" is to deny, correct or express frustration over the situation that just happened.

A: We have broken up!
B: 우리가 헤어지기는 뭘 헤어져요!

iResign. Steve Jobs has recently resigned from the iCEO position at Apple. And people were speculating about his health. Mr. Jobs would appreciate the concern but he'll probably say "Thanks, but no thanks.". :)


  1. 안녕하세요,

    First, thanks for the lessons. I've been enjoying your blog for a while. ^^ 정말 감사합니다..

    Reading the post, I'm wondering if I could use the pattern to express sentence like 'why should I work today', for example, on the first day of work after long holiday.

    Can I use '오늘 일하기는 왜 일해요..'?

    Thank you. :D

  2. Hi Elfira, I am very happy to hear that you enjoy my blog. :)

    This expression is better for denial or correction. For example, it makes sense if someone is working on Sunday and you say, "This is Sunday! 오늘 일하기는 왜 일해요?".

    If you want to say "Why should I work today?!" It is better to say "정말 일하기 싫다". I cannot think of other expression at the moment. But if one comes up, I will let you know. :)

  3. 고마워요, 민-씨.. Thanks for the explanation.

    I love it that you provide background story to each expressions you introduce! ^^

  4. Hi Min! I'm Sunny from Brazil, i'm enjoying your blog a lot.
    I'm learning korean by myself for 1 year, i have problems to memorize words~ can you add a vocabulary in your posts?
    I have a lot of doubts of 때문에 usages T-T I don't know what is the right positions in sentences...
    If you could help me, i'll be glad!

    ^^Thanks for the lessons

  5. Hi Sunny, nice to meet you. I try to do something about it. :)


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