links i find vital

where it all started for me! (btw it starts off with like a min of music)
a seoul radio station interview about bssk
a bunch of interviews with black expats in soko
find family on facebook: Brothas&Sistas of South Korea

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

be mentally free

ive been thinking about how foreigners here complain about how awful koreans are, and blah blah blah. you mostly read them on forums. but that's the point of forums, a part of it anyway, so you can vent. but anyway, about this gripe that you arent free in korea...

yeah, you're not. it's not your country. big deal. it's my opinion that it's white people who have trouble dealing with this; having lived your life of privilege and being a part of the majority, it'll sting you more when you're not number one for the first time in your life. this is not your home. that's not a bad thing. it means that youre out of your comfort zone, try to grow from it. it means that you need to keep your foreigner status in mind, and respect the space. get used to it.

i dont have too much sympathy for these complainers. toughen up.

anyway, it occurred to me that the gripe about not feeling free is trivial to me, perhaps it is the same for other conscious black folks... i love my life here, and sure im stared at and such, but im no less free here than i was in the states. yeah, im black and stared at, ive been turned away at a couple of businesses, maybe b/c im black, maybe b/c i dont speak korean, maybe b/c the vendor didnt understand want i wanted/needed. these things dont break me. these experiences are not new. what is new is my tolerance for it. im a guest here. i respect the space. america is supposed to be my home. it's when these things happen there that i get angry.

this is not to say that black people are free here. certainly not. but ive pretty much stopped trying to explain to colleagues that i am not having a tough time here. they'll ask how i find korea and i say that things are great, then the conversation routinely leads to them telling me about how awful these close minded koreans are and apologizing for any stress i may be under while here. i dont need your sympathy, fools. im black, not weak willed or weak minded. dont get the two confused.

1 comment:

njeanty said...

I think I am going to use that last line one day, "I'm Black not weak willed . . . Don't get it confused."