Tag Archives: Kung-fu

Teaching from the Bottom of the Totem Pole #2: Attempted Dong-Chim

8 Oct

I received so much traffic from my Teaching from the Bottom of the Totem Pole post that I’ve decided to make it a series that documents all the bizarre shit that goes at work.

In the last week I’ve realized my students are becoming more comfortable with me.  Some of then now sleep during class or otherwise check out mentally from the lesson, others sit and chat like my class is the hang out spot– not meant for actual learning, and I swear one of my sixth grade girls tells me everyday to “fuck off” in Korean.

The Best though is playing “Kung-Fu” with the 5th graders. In between classes we hold fake sparring matches where Mr. Woodson displays some fancy matial arts whilst making punching sounds and crazy facial expressions. It’s quite dramatic.  I’m pretty sure it pisses my co-teacher off, but I couldn’t care less. It’s fun as all hell and it breaks up the monotony of teaching boring lessons. It was during one of these kung-fu matches that I experienced an attempted dong-chim or “kancho,” as the Japanese call it.

Here I am pretending to snap a kids neck (the ultimate fatality move while playing kung-fu), when all of a sudden I feel a sharp pointy jab on my the left  side of my buttocks. I turn around and find one of my students grinning with his hands clasped together in the classic dong-chim stance. The little bugger missed my ass hole by mere inches.

I look around to make sure no adults are watching before issuing a quick chop to the culprit’s throat–hopefully ensuring the incident never happens again.

I’ve been told that the attempted dong-chim is a sign that the children like me and are comfortable with me as their teacher.

My response? If dong-chim means the students are fond of me, then I would like to return to a time when they hated my fucking guts.

I contemplate asking my co-teacher to tell the students in Korean that Mr. Woodson will promptly drop-kick any student that tries dong-chim on him, but instead I shed a tear and start the next lesson.


Kimchi Dreadlocks


This Might Get You Slapped!

5 Oct

Big ups to Kelly in Korea, Brian in Jellanam-Do and The Marmot’s Hole for alerting me of this.  I couldn’t resist posting it for my readers.

This, my friends, is the type of shit that might get you jumped on just about any street back home.  However here in Korea, it’s damn near a novelty to wear a t-shirt splattered with english sentences that either make no fucking sense whatsoever or are overtly offensive. It kills me that this chick is actually grinning from ear to ear, proud as ever of her racist ass purchase.

The worst part? Most  Koreans wearing this shit have no clue what the words even mean.

I keep asking myself  what would happen if I came across this in public. Three reactions come to mind:

1. Do nothing and chalk it up to ignorance.                                  
2. Point and give the famous Korean arm cross signaling “not o.k.”
3. Let the dreads down and flip the fuck out black kung-fu style (and possibly end up in Korean prison).

I guess we’ll find out if/when it happens. Roll with the punches right?


Kimchi Dreadlocks

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