So before the Keyboard warriors get going, hear me out. I want to be clear that these tips, held all together, creates a composite image of a Korean who does not exist. I know that. You know that. And now you know that I know that. These social blunders are not a description of my entire experience with Koreans, and nobody's socially clumsy enough to make every one of these mistakes in a single conversation. I've met many Koreans who are very socially adept (many more so than I am), and some, many, with manners that put me to shame.
However, in the course of meeting several hundred, maybe even a few thousand Koreans in the last seven years, I've seen a great variety of people, and while most of them are very socially adept, not all of them are. And while most of them don't commit these blunders, some have. In fact, enough have, and continue to do so, that these items were worth mentioning.
And the best thing is: most of these errors are easy to correct: a little awareness, and a little consideration of foreigners as fully functioning, feeling human beings, will take care of most of it. So before anybody gets in a snit, bear in mind what I'm trying to do here, and why I'm trying to do it, and as I said right at the beginning: if this stuff doesn't apply to you, ignore it!
Conversely, the same thing applies to we foreigners: so far, most of the advice I've heard directed towards foreigners boils down to being considerate. . . but why deliver a message in those two words, when I could deliver them in several thousand, eh? So, on with the series...
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