I’m on a train from Daegu to Busan. I just finished writing a post about Korean TV censorship. I don’t have any personal photos appropriate for that topic, so I started searching Google images for ideas. I tried “Korean TV censorship”, “Korean TV smoking”, and several others. I couldn’t find what I was looking for.
Next, I looked for photos of blurred nudity on American TV. I searched for “topless woman pixelation”, “nude TV censorship”, and a few others. I got lots of results, but nothing that was quite what I needed. I looked through hundreds of results before eventually deciding to go with a stock photo.
When I write, I tend to block out the rest of the world. I don’t pay much attention to what’s going on around me, but today something snapped me out of it. The two words that brought me back to earth were “외국인” (waygookin) and “변태” (pyeon-tae). These mean “foreigner” and “pervert”, respectively.
I looked around the half-empty car and realized that I am the only foreigner here. I also noticed that the voice went quiet as soon as I popped my head up and looked around. Over my left shoulder, a woman was staring right at me. She ducked down as I made eye contact. She had been watching me search, and it apparently looked to her like I was searching for porn.
It bothers me when I hear about Koreans believing that all foreigners are dirty and sex-crazed pedophiles. I try to be mindful of that preconception when I am in public. I’m not sure I did the foreign community any favors today. I certainly can’t blame her for looking at me like a creep.
Until next time.