mistook me

It is very hard to shop for Christmas presents in a relatively strange and enigmatic Asian country.  To find things that one can’t find in America (without a struggle — everything can be found everywhere now), but which are also unique enough to merit cherished possession.  Is hard, I tells ya.  So you know.

Three shopkeepers mistook me for a European, which when combined with the suit salesman who said "bonjour, monsieur," is shaping up to be something that I can consider an omen.

18 comments to mistook me

  • Tito Sanchez

    Nice blog. I can’t help but find it ironic that someone would mistake you for a Frenchman. I’ve noticed you harbor a virulent disdain for America’s current political state. Your attitude is very French if you ask me. Educated or at least not entirely ignorant, you persist in eschewing the opposing POV(while in a foreign country) without realizing that by doing so you are undermining an institution of government that has been the most powerful force of benevolence the world has ever known. Imperfect and clumsy as it may be, a modicum of pride regarding your country, even if you hate W, would increase the credibility of your opposition to XYZ in my opinion.

    Having lived in both S. Korea and Israel myself, I find it hard to believe you oppose all US intervention in world affairs. Next time you vist Jerusalem ask a Jew how evil he thinks the US is. Ask anyone over 50 in Korea if “Yankee go home” is good?

    When I was living in Korea I met a lot of Englishee teachers. They often get feeling too secure in their britches with the 2mil a month wages and easy poon. What they don’t realize is that they are widely regarded as clowns. Don’t be a clown. Butch up just a bit, have enough integrity to at least respect your country, and learn some Korean language and culture for the sake of Christmas.

  • Tito Sanchez

    Ok, that was a little harsh. I apologize.

    You seem like an intelligent guy with a gentle attitude for the most part. You obviously don’t fit the negative stereotypes of English teachers in korea.

  • Jef

    I find it interesting that while you find the time to comment on the political beliefs I express in my blog, you do so from behind a pseudonym and without an email address to which I might respond.

    Tell me more about integrity, Tito.

  • Tito

    Pseudonym? How dare you! 🙂 jk

    Forgive me for not wanting my life and privacy compromised by engaging in a political discussion that would go nowhere. We don’t disagree entirely in our views -just in our attitudes.

    If you don’t mind I’ll read your blog and keep the insults, if any, to a minimum.

    Here’s a challenge; sometime during this week when you are given the opportunity to derride your country, I dare you to exercise just 1/100 the nationalism of your average Korean and gently say something postive about the US and why you are proud to be an American. Your hosts will respect you for it.

    Sugohaseyo & Shalom

    Tito

  • Jef

    If you don’t want to engage in a political discussion, then don’t go around commenting on other people’s beliefs in a patronizing and sanctimonious way.

  • becky

    I didn’t think he was patronizing or sanctimonious. Perhaps you’re being a bit over-sensitive?

  • Jef

    Or, perhaps I get upset when strangers leave anonymous comments that say that I “oppose all US intervention in world affairs” and imply that I derride my country at every opportunity.

    If I’m going to be slandered, I would prefer it wasn’t done from behind a pseudonym.

    I stand behind “patronizing,” but I retract “sanctimonious.”

  • Tito

    Slandered? Jesus. A bit touchy aren’t we? It would behoove someone whose hobby is to lay their personal life prostrate on an open forum to grow some thicker skin.

    Every observation doesn’t have to digress into a discussion of ideas. At the end of your entry there is an invitation to “post a comment”. Forgive me for expressing my opinion and offering a little advice. Condescension doesn’t = slander.

  • Jef

    Perhaps I am somewhat touchy, perhaps I do need to grow some thicker skin. Ok.

    My main problem with your comment was that you invented information to make your point, and then you made it in an inflammatory way, all the while hiding behind your anonymity. This, after decrying my “stupidity” and telling me to “grow up” in previous comments.

    The soapbox is for standing on, not for hiding inside of.

  • tito

    Good Lord!

  • Jef

    “Good Lord!” what?

    You come on my site; you insult me, patronize me, and misrepresent me anonymously; and now you’re incredulous that I’m upset about it? The one comment — the one where you referred to my “stupidity” — you didn’t even leave a name on that one, God forbid anyone insult you back.

  • tito

    I NEVER CALLED YOU STUPID. Thin-skinned and incouragable perhaps. Your responses have only proved the former and to top it off we now have delusions of slander. Are we a bit paranoid?

    One over whelming characteristic of many of the single, white, male, US/Canadian English teachers that stay in Korea, is a vague bankruptcy of character. It’s a type of desperation I guess. It’s origins are most likely varied, but I always felt sad for a lot of these guys. Mainly because they seem to be broken hearted (not romantically per se).

    I really love Korea. At its root however, it is a land full of tragedy. While living there, I often wondered if there was a supernatural magnet that bound all the people (Koreans and foreigners alike) together. Not entirely unlike Israel.

    Just my thoughts. Jef, good luck in Korea. Have a beer and relax will ya? Think about the beaches of Tel Aviv and that lovely Jewish babe of yours. You seem stressed out. Go to the bath house and meditate.

  • Jef

    I am certainly not going to let you end this with yet another patronizing and (ok) condescending comment.

    You didn’t call me “stupid,” you wrote: “Geez the stupidity” in reference to one of my posts.

    “Tito” is calling Jef Taylor at MeatballDay@gmail.com paranoid? Er…

    Here’s a good way to end this: You could apologize for misrepresenting me and calling me names, and then leave it at that. Resist the urge to bless me with more of your worldy advice or political expertise, and please please please… no more character judgements. I could very easily say something about you based on the nature of your comments, but see how I don’t?

  • Tito

    Condescension is all I can muster for you in the frame of this discussion. Sorry. I know it’s a bit rude.

    BTW I never called you stupid, read. In fact if you look at my first comment you will see that I referred to you as educated and not entirely ignorant.

    Jef you are a very complicated individual. But we are the same age and have similar similar backgrounds. You blog is nice. When I get home-sick for Korea I like cruising the blogs. Your’s is top-shelf in my opinion.

  • Jef

    If condescension is really all you can muster, then I don’t blame you for remaining anonymous. I’d stay anonymous, too, if that were my fate.

    BTW — The “stupidity” quote (as well as the “grow up” quote) were both from comments of yours on earlier posts. In one of them you wrote “CA democrat who VOTED BUSH!” and it struck me (and still does) as one of the most ridiculous things I’d ever read.

  • becky

    Jef. Chill out. You are absloutely loved and certainly not bankrupt of character, even if you are a little odd and don’t realize this guy is actually saying nice things about you, while– quite gently, really–disagreeing with you. You’re always ready to get your shackles up and feel attacked, which I always found strange considering you can be one of the most patronizing people I have ever met when it comes to people (like me) who disagree with you about things.

    I think this guy sounds pretty cool. Wordy and wistful and writerish–your kind of guy, really. Even if he thinks I’m Jewish because I live in Israel.

    You are my favorite person.

  • Jef

    You’re just saying that because he called you “lovely.” Admit it.

  • Ryan

    That Tito dude is mean. Big meanie face.

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