Your favorite “plastic” girl is back with another story.
Here’s another tale which could only happen to someone like me. Have a good one.
F. M. Laster
“I only like two kinds of men, domestic and imported.” -Mae West
Drunks, Phones, and Fun Time Black Barbie
Before getting my phone, I had a lot of encounters with drunken Koreans. Last Saturday, I finally broke down and bought a cell phone. I usually used a pay phone to call home or use Niall’s or Lauren’s phone when I needed to make a call. Yeah, now I have finally made it into the new decade with a cell phone. I am now like the rest of the cool kids.
However, when I did call home, I usually had to encounter all kinds of pervs while making phone calls home. Yes, before you ask Korea has a TON of pay phones, unlike H-town where payphones are somewhat of a rarity. So today’s tale is a true story. I had an actual drunk Korean man try and get into a phone booth with me. You know how small the things are. Imagine my fat ass and this man trying to cram into a booth.
The man was trying his hardest to have a conversation with me while I was talking on the phone. I’m like dude, can you not see me. What he did next was more shocking. He reached into his pocket pulled out some money and said, “Soju Date?” What? Wait. What? Was this little fucker asking for a date? Wait a minute am I in hooker land?
I wish I could say this was the end of the conversation, but no. When I got out of the phone booth, the man then followed me down the street, still speaking to me in broken English asking for a “date.” He even tried to grab my arm. Clearly, this man seemed to think that, “Fuck off” means, “ Why of course I’ll do you in this dirty alley! Let’s get it on!”
I also wish that I could say this was a single isolated incident. However, it was the first time that I had a man try and get into a phone booth with me. The others at least waited outside until I was finished with my call.
There are times when I wonder why people do shit like that, and then I remembered two little things since coming to Korea:
- Koreans have a different concept of personal space than Westerners
- As a foreigner, I am at the lower rung of Korean social hierarchy
Being a foreigner at times is like a two-sided coin. While being a foreigner you are lower than dogs in society, there is numerous Korean woman desperately getting plastic surgery to look more Caucasian. Parents are tripping over themselves and going into serious debt to enroll their children in the latest Hagwon just because there is a new pretty Caucasian face there. Not to mention that Americanization is everywhere you look; Nike, McDonald’s, KFC.
Then you have the other side of the coin, you are faced daily with students who do not respect you because you are a foreigner. Employers and co-workers do not consider you a real teacher because you are a foreigner. Of course, there are the drunken men on the street that see you as fair game and are a sex worker because you are a foreigner.
I don’t usually let the drunks and the racists cloud my judgment of Korea and her people. They are just a small part of the narrative. There are actually three parts. The Good tends to be really good. The Bad is Super Sucky. Let’s not even get started with The Ugly; it’s really ugly.