The Typhoon in the region of Korea/Japan at the moment is called 너구리.
너구리 is the Korean word for Raccoon Dog (and not Raccoon, which are also called 아메리카 너구리 (America-noguri) in Korean)
I don’t remember the last time a typhoon was named after a Korean word (OK, maybe I have a vague recollection of Nabi 나비, but I was not sure if it came from the Korean word back then) so I decided to look up the convention of typhoon naming.
As expected there are some humorous comments on the internet related to how this typhoon is named after one of the most popular instant noodles in Korea. Incidentally, the reason why the instant noodles is named 너구리 is also interesting, as the *tenkasu (bits of tempura batter pieces)* which used to come in the 너구리’s 건더기스프 has disappeared, and the why たぬき udon/soba is named tanuki is also interesting, but I digress.
For those interested, this link in Korean explains a lot.
Back to the typhoon naming.
This Korean Meteorology webpage has information on how the names were provided -10 each from 14 countries which lie within the influence of Typhoon. These are placed in 5 different groups and every typhoon gets its name taken in turn from each group.
Since North Korea also submitted 10 entries, there are 20 Korean words floating around to be used. Say what you will about North Korea, looking at their entries and how they are spelled, they have the right idea about keeping the words sounding Korean.
Hereis the complete list of the 140 names from the 14 different countries and their meaning.
Apparently, the words submitted from South Korea carry the wish that it should not cause a large damage, and therefore the names are chosen from weaker and softer of the animal kingdom.
Finally, the piece of information I found most interesting is that every year, typhoons that caused a large damage in that year get their names replaced by new entries submitted from the same country.
From the article link :
우리나라가 제출한 태풍 ‘나비’의 경우 2005년 일본을 강타하며 엄청난 재해를 일으켜 ‘독수리’라는 이름으로 바뀌었다. 이 밖에도 ‘봉선화’가 ‘노을’로(2002년), ‘매미’가 ‘무지개’로(2003년), ‘수달’이 ‘미리내’로(2004년) 각각 대체됐다.
In the case of South Korea, 4 names have been replaced already.
너구리’s left South Korea but caused havoc in Nagiso in Nagano prefecture in Japan.
Here’s hoping that 너구리 goes away quietly in the night, and does not cause any more damage anywhere.