February 17, 2019, 04:36:33 PM


Author Topic: Why do Koreans always jump out of their skin?  (Read 2628 times)

Offline Cyanea

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Why do Koreans always jump out of their skin?
« on: September 06, 2018, 01:10:45 PM »
So exiting the lift today a corean almost jumped out of her skin when the elevator doors opened. Actually this happens quite frequently. Is it really that astonishing and unexpected to see someone in the lift?

I have a tattoo on my arm, maybe that was it. But really... the frequency with which these people react with exagerated surprise to normal daily events is quite absurd.
Catch my drift?

Online JNM

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Re: Why do Koreans always jump out of their skin?
« Reply #1 on: September 06, 2018, 01:17:06 PM »
So exiting the lift today a corean almost jumped out of her skin when the elevator doors opened. Actually this happens quite frequently. Is it really that astonishing and unexpected to see someone in the lift?

I have a tattoo on my arm, maybe that was it. But really... the frequency with which these people react with exagerated surprise to normal daily events is quite absurd.

I've no tats, am clean cut, and usually wear a suit... Happens all the time.

Offline robin_teacher

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Re: Why do Koreans always jump out of their skin?
« Reply #2 on: September 06, 2018, 01:25:20 PM »
"깜짝이야!"

Strangers, colleagues, SO; it doesn't matter. It happens weekly, if not daily.

Offline theman3285

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Re: Why do Koreans always jump out of their skin?
« Reply #3 on: September 06, 2018, 01:30:49 PM »
I have a tattoo on my arm, maybe that was it.
To be fair, I'd also jump if I ran into a gangster :wink:

(For the record, I'm heavily tattooed myself)

Online Chinguetti

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Re: Why do Koreans always jump out of their skin?
« Reply #4 on: September 06, 2018, 01:32:45 PM »
This may or may not fit the theme of this thread, but older Koreans (male and female) are scared of me if they see me in the middle of the night while in an unpopulated area, even if it's well lit. They've picked up their dogs to carry them across the road just to get as far away from me as possible.

I'm 5'5" and female. I'm fit, but I'm in no way muscular. I have no tats, and I'm always well groomed.

This increases tenfold if I'm wearing dark clothes and have my hair down (it's long and dark). And I've tested this, if I put my hair up in these cases their anxiety visibly decreases. So I assume they think I might be a ghost or something?

Better to play it safe than sorry, I guess, lmao.

Online JVPrice

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Re: Why do Koreans always jump out of their skin?
« Reply #5 on: September 06, 2018, 01:34:38 PM »
I'm African American, so stares are a given. I get weirded out with the old people who just stand there and look at you like you're about to do something special.

I noticed it especially though during Comic Con in Seoul. I was with some friends (a group of cosplayers, and me the photographer). When we were navigating the Coex mall to get some food, every 5 minutes there was at least 1 Korean that would go "아!" stop in their tracks and just stare, as if they'd never seen a person in costume.

All that said though, I've never caused anyone to jump as if they were surprised or scared of me :undecided: I somehow did that more often in the states, honestly
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Online Aristocrat

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Re: Why do Koreans always jump out of their skin?
« Reply #6 on: September 06, 2018, 01:35:16 PM »
So exiting the lift today a corean almost jumped out of her skin when the elevator doors opened. Actually this happens quite frequently. Is it really that astonishing and unexpected to see someone in the lift?

I have a tattoo on my arm, maybe that was it. But really... the frequency with which these people react with exagerated surprise to normal daily events is quite absurd.

Homogenous upbringing and a few thousand years of Confucianism, variety is still a novelty in Korea.
Still, people in Seoul, particularly the younger generation don't tend to do this as much as in the provinces.

Another theory is that they're trying to act 'cutesy'. China, Korea and Japan share a few cultural similarities, particularly with what's seen as attractive for women. Traditionally, woman who are pure, innocent and delicate are the ideal. Somehow, they've associated this with children and acting childish, hence all that 'aegyo' sh*t and giggling at literally anything... Just a theory.

Online Savant

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Re: Why do Koreans always jump out of their skin?
« Reply #7 on: September 06, 2018, 01:35:30 PM »
"깜짝이야!"

Strangers, colleagues, SO; it doesn't matter. It happens weekly, if not daily.

For six years, I mistakenly thought Koreans were saying this...

"갑자기야!" 'Suddenly!'  Which kind of makes sense...

 :sad:

Could have been "감자기야". Someone with a weird persimmon fetish.

Offline CO2

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Re: Why do Koreans always jump out of their skin?
« Reply #8 on: September 06, 2018, 01:36:23 PM »
Could have been "감자기야". Someone with a weird persimmon fetish.

Or they're calling you a potato device.

Pretty insulting, honestly.  :laugh: :laugh: :laugh: :laugh:
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Online Mr.DeMartino

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Re: Why do Koreans always jump out of their skin?
« Reply #9 on: September 06, 2018, 01:36:40 PM »
Confirmation bias. If you have that "Koreans are always doing things differently" mindset and get worked up about it, you'll notice it more and more.

Online JNM

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Re: Why do Koreans always jump out of their skin?
« Reply #10 on: September 06, 2018, 01:41:40 PM »
Confirmation bias. If you have that "Koreans are always doing things differently" mindset and get worked up about it, you'll notice it more and more.

In this case, I don't think so. (And I often agree with you when you point this out!)

In the west, one waits for an elevator (or subway) to empty before trying to enter. Here there is a non-trivial increase in the likelihood that you are faced with a surprised local in a hurry to get on!

Offline CO2

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Re: Why do Koreans always jump out of their skin?
« Reply #11 on: September 06, 2018, 01:44:22 PM »
The joys of fauxtherhood

Offline CO2

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Re: Why do Koreans always jump out of their skin?
« Reply #12 on: September 06, 2018, 01:45:29 PM »
I'm African American, so stares are a given. I get weirded out with the old people who just stand there and look at you like you're about to do something special.

I noticed it especially though during Comic Con in Seoul. I was with some friends (a group of cosplayers, and me the photographer). When we were navigating the Coex mall to get some food, every 5 minutes there was at least 1 Korean that would go "아!" stop in their tracks and just stare, as if they'd never seen a person in costume.

All that said though, I've never caused anyone to jump as if they were surprised or scared of me :undecided: I somehow did that more often in the states, honestly

"Wow, what a convincing black man!"  :laugh: :laugh: :laugh: :laugh:
The joys of fauxtherhood

Online Chinguetti

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Re: Why do Koreans always jump out of their skin?
« Reply #13 on: September 06, 2018, 01:56:56 PM »
So I assume they think I might be a ghost or something?

Is this you?

https://comic.naver.com/webtoon/detail.nhn?titleId=350217&no=20 Open in IE, I know it sounds weird, just do it.

English version (dunt matter)

https://www.webtoons.com/en/thriller/chiller/bongcheon-dong-ghost-horang/viewer?title_no=536&episode_no=22

That was pretty good. *saves* Wondering how well I can slap something like that together for my Halloween PPTs. I always do jump scares throughout the month of October, and my students have come to expect them, so I want to try to blindside them a little.

I'm also seriously thinking about getting white face makeup to wear for the week of Halloween. Maybe even run around in my school with a white bathrobe over my clothes and my hair down over my face.

I'll probably end up getting myself fired.
« Last Edit: September 06, 2018, 01:58:56 PM by Chinguetti »

Offline Cyanea

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Re: Why do Koreans always jump out of their skin?
« Reply #14 on: September 06, 2018, 02:11:59 PM »
This may or may not fit the theme of this thread, but older Koreans (male and female) are scared of me if they see me in the middle of the night while in an unpopulated area, even if it's well lit. They've picked up their dogs to carry them across the road just to get as far away from me as possible.

I'm 5'5" and female. I'm fit, but I'm in no way muscular. I have no tats, and I'm always well groomed.

This increases tenfold if I'm wearing dark clothes and have my hair down (it's long and dark). And I've tested this, if I put my hair up in these cases their anxiety visibly decreases. So I assume they think I might be a ghost or something?

An intriguing case.

Hate to degrade the conversation, but maybe they think you are a prostitute?

« Last Edit: September 06, 2018, 02:21:29 PM by Cyanea »
Catch my drift?

Offline debbiem89

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Re: Why do Koreans always jump out of their skin?
« Reply #15 on: September 06, 2018, 02:30:49 PM »
Confirmation bias. If you have that "Koreans are always doing things differently" mindset and get worked up about it, you'll notice it more and more.

Too true. Someone once pointed out to me that Koreans apparently dropped their phones more than anyone he'd ever seen.

Honestly I must have noticed about 10 people a day dropping their phones after that period. It can't be the case surely, but it was funny that I noticed it all the time after that point  :laugh:

Online eggieguffer

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Re: Why do Koreans always jump out of their skin?
« Reply #16 on: September 06, 2018, 02:46:39 PM »
I've noticed adult students pretending to be shocked when they notice me monitoring them in a speaking activity. This happens a lot more than in other countries.

Offline tylerthegloob

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Re: Why do Koreans always jump out of their skin?
« Reply #17 on: September 06, 2018, 03:15:01 PM »
I've noticed adult students pretending to be shocked when they notice me monitoring them in a speaking activity. This happens a lot more than in other countries.

I pretend to be shocked too.

Online oglop

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Re: Why do Koreans always jump out of their skin?
« Reply #18 on: September 06, 2018, 03:15:56 PM »
it's weird that you posted this thread, as i was thinking exactly this yesterday. i've definitely noticed a lot korean women i know (especially women for some reason) jump when nothing out of the ordinary happens i.e. jump when i say goodbye to them when i'm leaving, walking past, they don't immediately see me and then jump, etc

wonder why

Offline tylerthegloob

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Re: Why do Koreans always jump out of their skin?
« Reply #19 on: September 06, 2018, 03:19:26 PM »
it's weird that you posted this thread, as i was thinking exactly this yesterday. i've definitely noticed a lot korean women i know (especially women for some reason) jump when nothing out of the ordinary happens i.e. jump when i say goodbye to them when i'm leaving, walking past, they don't immediately see me and then jump, etc

wonder why

Just counter their jump with a jump of your own.