Living in Wonju South Korea, These Many Long Years

Living in Wonju South Korea, These Many Long Years: Version 2.0!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012


Today I participated in a meeting of the big wigs at work; I was ostensibly to watch, answer questions appropriately, and generally be unobtrusive.


What I didn't know was that I would end up basically taking charge of the Q and A.  Many of the waegs had very pointed questions to ask about production facilities, delivery dates, and costs.  It seems in this case most of the Koreans that were on the other side were lower level peons who didn't really have much to say during the meeting itself.

To toot my own horn, I handled the whole situation admirably.  However, things went a bit south over lunch when one of the low-on-the-totem-pole gyopos stated:

You must have an easy job.  If you're a foreigner working here, you must have a pretty good gig, with not a lot of work to do.


At the time I didn't miss a beat: actually, you'll find that the expats who work here generally put in more hours than the majority of their Korean peers due to the specialized nature of our work; just check our time sheets.  But then, most of us didn't take this job thinking it would be easy haha.  You'll find that the vast majority of us actually have Korean spouses, and have decided to make Korea our home. *smile*

Interesting.  What percentage of your expat staff are males married to Korean women?

Well, I think we do have some available women and men at the moment, would you like to be introduced? 

This drew a loud guffaw from one of the waegs in the visiting party, and the conversation moved on to other things.

Afterwards, I got angry.  WTF was going through that moron's head for her to ask those kinds of questions?   I don't see any advantage for her putting me on tilt if that was her goal, but if it was she'd garner better results trolling someone fresher off the boat. After a while, it is easier to deal with that kind of nonsense.

Funny, usually I don't have to deal with that kind of idiocy, at least not as much since leaving the EFL circuit.  There, it wasn't uncommon to be painted with such a broad brush: no matter how hard you work or what contribution you make to society, in the eyes of some, you are detritus which has washed up on these shores, are shown kindness, then abuse and demean your most virtuous and benevolent hosts.  Admittedly, it is hard to stay positive when you run into some douche nozzle that would talk on such a topic in a professional environment.

Best forget about it and move on.  Tomorrow is another day. 

Time for some rice wine.

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