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So, an ajoshie bumped into me the other day and...
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Scorpion



Joined: 15 Apr 2012

PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 4:16 pm    Post subject: So, an ajoshie bumped into me the other day and... Reply with quote

So I was walking around Itaewon last Saturday afternoon and, as usual, people were bumping into me as I was going about my business. Getting bumped into is one of the things I just can’t get used to here. Being knocked into is anxiety-inducing and can change my mood in an instant. I don’t like it. I consider it a form of assault.

Anyway, I’m walking up towards the fire station to get a chicken stick at the corner. I’m keeping to the right of the sidewalk. An ajoshie is approaching from the other direction and I realize that a shoulder collision is inevitable. (I’m as far to the right with nowhere to go.) So by instinct I firm my shoulder in anticipation of the bump. It happens, as it has a hundred times before, and I carry on, cursing him under my breath but almost immediately forgetting about it. About fifteen or twenty steps on I hear some ajoshie screaming about something. I ignore it but it gets louder and more aggressive, so I turn around and see that he’s yelling at me. It seems that he got the worst of the bump and was pissed about it. I yelled back to him to watch where he’s going and turned back to keep walking. Suddenly I hear the sound of running behind me and the screetches of a woman. I turn around and ajoshie is mere feet from me doing the whole faux aggression thing while his ajumma is ‘holding him back’. I dismiss the fool and continue walking to the corner. He’s cursing and yelling up a storm. I was more interested in getting my chicken stick, and told him to watch where he’s going – that he had collided with me.

Anyway, the chicken stand wasn’t open yet so I decide to loop around and head down to Geckos via the back lane. When I get to the bottom, low and behold there’s ole ajoshie and he starts in again with the uber-aggressive behavior. (He goes into a rage and pretends to want to get at me but is again somehow restrained by the powerful arms of his 100 pound wife.) I cross the road to go into Geckos, all the while he’s yelling and following me across the road and up the steps to the restaurant. His wife and fifteen year old son (bizarely oversized K-pop glasses included) have now joined in the yelling and abuse. I am at the point where I’m about to knock this guy’s teeth out, then I remember that Geckos usually has security guards at the door. They’ll not let this gaggle into the restaurant. I was correct; they are denied entrance and sent back down the stairs. I sit down at a table, open my newspaper, and order a beer and a menu. I decide to put this into my ‘freaky encounters with random Koreans’ file. My beer arrives and I order fish and chips. I open my newspaper and start reading, then the door opens and in walks ajoshie….with two cops.

Yup, two friggin’ police officers because ajoshie bumped into a foreigner and got the worst of it. The policemen ask me to step outside, which I do. They translate what ajoshie is ranting on about. I explain that I couldn’t go any further to the right, and that he collided with me. The banshee of a wife, and 'I'm a gangsta' K-pop boy, start yelling and making up false details. The cops look at this gaggle then at me (clean cut, sober, polite, presentable and calm) and realize that ajoshie is being an idiot. Then ajoshie changes tact, stating that he lived overseas and that when foreigners bump into each other they apologize. (So now he’s using Korean cops to enforce Western cultural standards that he himself doesn’t adhere to. Ironically, at the same time K-pop boy is starting to yell, “Here is the Korea. Here is not your country.” The police tell him to shut up.) So I say to ajoshie fine, if he apologizes for bumping into me, I’ll apologize for him getting the worst of it. He refuses. He insists that I alone apologize. I say that it ain’t gonna happen. Then he says something else to the cop. The cop says that if I don’t apologize I have to go with them to the police station. In utter disbelief, I ask why. They say ajoshie wants to lay charges. WTF? So I think to myself, this is Saturday evening, the one night of the week I get to Itaewon so I can escape the Korea experience. And here I am facing the prospect of sitting in a Korean police station for three hours while ajoshie drags an ‘apology’ from me. Not willing to waste my Saturday night I decide fine, I’ll apologize. I say ‘mian hamnida’ and start to walk back into Geckos. Ajoshie says something and the cop says, “Just a moment….He says your apology is not sincere.” Of course, it’s not. But anxious to get back to my beer, and away from this fool, I do a bow and say it again. The police, knowing this was utter bullshit, then turn (to ajoshie’s disgust) and bow to me. The cops were actually pretty cool about it all, knowing ajoshie was just a fool.

But be warned, Koreans bumping into you can get you arrested. Very Happy
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Underwaterbob



Joined: 08 Jan 2005
Location: In Cognito

PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 4:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The rest of the rant aside, I'll never understand people who come on here complaining about bumps that they saw coming a mile away, yet let occur anyway. There are directions other than right. In fact - obnoxiously enough - many (particularly older) Koreans prefer to pass on the left.

I say this from my golden bubble of being 6'5" and having most people scramble to get out of my way.
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Joe Boxer



Joined: 25 Dec 2007

PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 4:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Every time I read one of these stories, it always ends in the same way; the waegookin bowing to the ajossi that transgressed against him.

Right up until the end, I was hoping for the best. But, disappointed again.
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maximmm



Joined: 01 Feb 2008

PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 4:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Underwaterbob wrote:
The rest of the rant aside, I'll never understand people who come on here complaining about bumps that they saw coming a mile away, yet let occur anyway. There are directions other than right. In fact - obnoxiously enough - many (particularly older) Koreans prefer to pass on the left.

I say this from my golden bubble of being 6'5" and having most people scramble to get out of my way.


I agree. It is well known that Ajoshis and Ajumas have 100 square meters of personal space. When I see one, I tend to be on the lookout - they bump into foreigners and Koreans alike (if they are younger). The don't mean anything by it - since it's merely a bump check that's used to test whether the Confucianism rules are still being adhered to in the country.
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Fox



Joined: 04 Mar 2009

PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 4:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It sounds like the police were doing everything within their power to defuse this situation while still complying with the letter of the law. Honestly, I generally like the Korean police style in this regard. Sure, it's ridiculous that the man could have pressed charges against you, but that's not really within the power of a local cop to change. Korean law in general seems to be predicated upon the notion that the police will behave in this fashion.

I can't say I've had too much of a problem with sidewalk collisions, but I also instinctively believe that everyone else in the world is completely unreasonable, so even back in America I'd make sure to put as much space between me and other walkers as possible.
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Who's Your Daddy?



Joined: 30 May 2010
Location: The joy's in the ride.

PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 4:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am pleased by the police response in this situation. Also pretty good the bar wouldn't let them in.
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porshe



Joined: 16 Sep 2013

PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 5:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Iwould say you did a good job by faking the apology as for me I hardly ever get bumped. It's only in Korea these childess actions from Koreans that happen.

In America if this kind of thing happen all of them would of got a head stompping, and probably robbed lol. But you did the right thing!! your rant is definetly heard, I'm suprised this happen in Iteawon, usally it's like America I never had encounters like that. Most of my encounters were in places and such places as getting on and off at the subway or going up or down stairs at the subway station. And when I do walk down the side walk, most Koreans get out of my way!

Seems that all of Korean men especially ajases and the wanna be k-pop nerd wearing oversized glasses have this false bravado. They really don't want to fight but they both want to prove that they are proud of being a Korean. So they just bark like a puppy dog!

Anyway it's good to hear that you did the right thing instead of going ape shit and ending up in the news. Way to hold your self-contro,l God knows I would of went ape shit with the stress I'm dealing with in this country!!!
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greene



Joined: 11 Dec 2008

PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 6:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

here since 2008, never been bumped

6'3"
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andrewchon



Joined: 16 Nov 2008
Location: In my goshiwon cubicle. Seeking moksha.

PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 6:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Have considered walking like a car? You could have walked up square to him and stop, then let him walk around you. Then again, it is cool to walk like you're fullback running a 3-4 power-left between guard and centre. Laughing
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Smithington



Joined: 14 Dec 2011

PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 6:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You'd think Korean cops would have better things to do with their time. Like ticketing all the fools running red lights at the intersection right outside Geckos. But I guess that would make sense. Confused
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radcon



Joined: 23 May 2011

PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 6:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here is what I don't understand. He decides to press charges against you, then I would tell the cops I wish to press charges against him for bumping into me. But I guess he did have two "witnesses".
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PigeonFart



Joined: 27 Apr 2006

PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 6:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If the local peasant wanted to actually press charges against the graduate, would it have cost him anything?

It would have been interesting to see how far it would have gone legally if the graduate refused to apologise (which could have been the right thing to do you could argue).
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Weigookin74



Joined: 26 Oct 2009

PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 7:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Some ajossis are pretty arrogant and obnoxious aren't they? I ride my bike and ding my bell. Everyone except for them get out of the way. But I get right up on them and ding my bike bell like crazy and they still keep walking slowly in the middle of a wide walkway and don't get out of the way or even turn around. I have to scream at them to MOVE to make them get out of the way. Some of them are so obnoxious and so filled with themselves. Not all, of course, but some of them, you wish you could meet them out of Korea and flip them off. Let them go to the cops back home who would laugh in their face.
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Fox



Joined: 04 Mar 2009

PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 7:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

radcon wrote:
Here is what I don't understand. He decides to press charges against you, then I would tell the cops I wish to press charges against him for bumping into me. But I guess he did have two "witnesses".


The original poster probably could have said he wanted to press charges as well, but all that would do is destroy the possibility of an amicable resolution, waste a bunch of his time going down to the police office, and possibly even ending up in court, where the old man will fake severe injuries as a result of the collision. The original poster could only lose in this scenario: at best, he'd walk away with a lot of his time wasted, and at worst, he might even end up being mandated to pay damages in response to the Korean man's lawsuit! Depending on the temperament of his employer, it could even cost him his job when the employer says his having ended up in court hurt the school's reputation.
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Weigookin74



Joined: 26 Oct 2009

PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 7:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fox wrote:
radcon wrote:
Here is what I don't understand. He decides to press charges against you, then I would tell the cops I wish to press charges against him for bumping into me. But I guess he did have two "witnesses".


The original poster probably could have said he wanted to press charges as well, but all that would do is destroy the possibility of an amicable resolution, waste a bunch of his time going down to the police office, and possibly even ending up in court, where the old man will fake severe injuries as a result of the collision. The original poster could only lose in this scenario: at best, he'd walk away with a lot of his time wasted, and at worst, he might even end up being mandated to pay damages in response to the Korean man's lawsuit! Depending on the temperament of his employer, it could even cost him his job when the employer says his having ended up in court hurt the school's reputation.


Yep, ain't that the racist truth. In the eyes of the law the Korean can do no worng, but the non Korean is always suspect....
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