I was walking down the street last night after having watched a movie, and I wanted to find a taxi. Of course, where I got to the main street, a number of young couples were waiting, so I decided to walk a few blocks down and nab a taxi before it hit the busy spot.
As I was walking, someone grabbed me on the arm. I turned to see who it was, thinking it might be a friend or acquaintance, but not, it was a total stranger. A Korean ajeoshi — a middle aged man. I looked at him and said, in a slightly annoyed tone, “왜?” He just looked at me, straight in the face, with a disdainful expression, and then began to walk away.
I called out after him again, “왜?” and then followed up with a, “What the hell?”
I am beginning to develop, well, I wouldn’t call it an attitude problem, because I think my attitude is just fine. It’s more like, my intolerance for ignorant, rude bullshit is beginning to have a hair-trigger. And the people who set it off most are these older men who seem to think they can do anything they please.
It’s not all ajeoshis, mind you. Lots of the fellows are polite as anything, helpful and nice. But there is a certain fraction of these guys who seem incapable of imagining what it’d be like if someone else was grabbing them, butting in front of them in line, swearing at them, and so on.
So I think from now on, when I meet one of these people, I am going to help them expand their imaginations. When they butt in front of me in line, I’ll show them what it feels like. When they cuss at me, I’ll cuss right back. When they grab my arm for no reason but whim, I’ll grab their arm and ask whether it feels nice.
Probably won’t do any good, but I am sick of older men thinking they are God’s gift to the world and that their random ignorant whim is law.