Today I’m going to try something new on request from several readers. Instead of just giving advice or explaining situations, I’m telling an actual story of something that happened during my time dating around here in Korea. If I get favorable response from these, I’ll continue telling my other stories as well. Some will be of success, some will be of failure, and some will just be of the notably weird, but all will be true and show a part of the dating life as a foreigner in Korea.
Anyone who dates around a lot is bound to have some pretty weird first date stories, and I am no stranger to bad first dates. This particular girl however even surprised me with how incredibly weird and awkward she made our first date.
This story happened back in May, when I was not drinking for a month as an experiment to see if I could still get laid completely sober. I had hooked up with an airline stewardess who lived nearby on a Tuesday night and the next morning we took my dog, Simba, out for a walk and she was heading home. A few minutes after parting ways with the stewardess, I saw a cute girl also walking a dog.
Simba, being much like me, ran up to the other one and started trying to hump it immediately. The girl and I both laughed and started talking. After about a 15 minute chat, she asked for my number (a huge signal of interest) and we parted ways, agreeing to meet up on Friday for a date.
She immediately began messaging me regularly with great enthusiasm, always a good sign. We banter back and forth for a couple of days and she seems genuinely excited about the date.
Now before I get to the date, let me tell you a little about the girl. She’s 22, very cute but not sexy, exactly the style I normally go for. Probably a 6-8 on most guys’ scales, depending on how much you like the cute factor. She speaks minimal to no English, so we’re communicating entirely in Korean. Because of these factors, I can immediately rule her out as being a Foreigner Lover. She tells me that she doesn’t drink at all, so she’s not a Party Animal or an Alcoholic, and she just recently broke up with her first and only boyfriend so she’s likely not a Slut. I narrow down that she’s probably a mix between a Prude and a Friend.
Now Friday comes around and she messages me in the morning saying that she has a family obligation at night and asks if we can meet for lunch in a couple of hours instead. I didn’t particularly mind, since that just meant I would call another girl for the night date and double dip. I agree and she says she’ll come over to my neighborhood at about 11:30.
Being the kind of guy that I am, I’m constantly thinking about what I can do to get her back to my place. Before or after lunch was unimportant, but getting a girl to cross that threshold into your apartment increases your odds of getting laid by around 70%, so that was my main goal. Since she already knew Simba, I decided to bring him out with me when I went to meet her. In doing this, I guaranteed that we would have to go back to my place together to put him away before going to lunch. I was hoping we could stop in and work up an appetite as well.
She calls me and tells me that her dad is driving her over because apparently it was too far to walk, so I give her directions to a nearby café where she can see me waiting. A car pulls up and she hops out, so I go give her a hug and Simba starts humping her leg. I wave to her dad (awkward moment in Korean culture), then take her by the hand and start leading her away asking what she wants for lunch. Smiling, she looks at me and asks me to wait just a minute…
** At this point it is worth reminding you players out there that we are speaking entirely in Korean. While my Korean is strong, it is far from perfect and I miss out on a lot of nuance in the language and certain implications. **
I just keep talking with her about what we’ll have for lunch and how I’m starting to get hungry, just letting my chatter run full steam ahead while Simba pees on everything in sight. Suddenly, from the corner where he had just driven off, her dad walks around and waves at us. I’m taken aback because I can’t for the life of me figure out why he’s here.
Her dad is dressed in a full suit and tie, but clearly not at work because it’s 11:30 on a Friday. I don’t know if she invited him along or if he has invited himself along, but either way this puts a big kink in my plan of taking his daughter to my apartment for purposes of carnal fornication. (Cue Chili Peppers song)
Unsure of what to do next, I take the girl by the hand and start walking to the nearby park with my dog hoping that Daddy-O would get the hint and leave, but instead he jogs up next to me and hits me with the very last question I expected in this situation:
“Hey Jack, do you believe in God?”
Not only was this question strange and unexpected, as we hadn’t even introduced ourselves, but it was also surprisingly in English! I was entirely taken aback and gave some response about not particularly thinking about that topic a lot, and he responded by beckoning me over to a gazebo area with benches to sit on.
We all sat down (except for Simba who was still humping legs) and he pulled up something on his phone and handed it to me. He said it was some kind of test and I took his phone out of pure morbid curiosity. This date was already obviously not a date but some kind of weird set-up, and I was really interested to see exactly what the end game was here and how exactly the two of them thought this would turn out.
I take the phone and start watching this video that begins playing, showing volcanoes erupting and violent storms destroying trees, and after about 30 seconds of video a voice comes up asking “Do you believe that there are dangerous catastrophes in the world?”
Actually laughing out loud at this point, I click yes and kept going. I noticed in my periphery that both Daddy-O and the girl are watching me intently with wide smiles on their faces. Not at all weird…
This contrived piece of propaganda continues for another 2 or 3 minutes, pausing every 30 seconds to ask a completely inane Yes/No question. Some of these included, “Do you want your friends and loved ones to be safe?” “If you knew a way to escape these disasters, would you tell your friends and loved ones?” and my personal favorite, “Do you want your friends and loved ones to be happy and safe for all of eternity?” Each question is some kind of ridiculous simplification that all but demands a Yes answer.
At this point, it was very clear that they are aiming to either ascertain my religion or get me to join theirs, but either way I’m not too interested. I hand the phone back to Daddy-O and he happily exclaims that I passed his test, which made me curious exactly what I would have had to do in order to fail it.
I politely thank him and tell him that it’s lunch time, so I take the girl’s hand and start walking away in a Hail Mary attempt to salvage the date. We make it two steps before the girl stops me and tells me that Daddy-O is going to take us to a lunch buffet instead of eating locally. After the weak conversion attempt that just occurred, I can already tell that this is some kind of trap and I promptly refuse the invitation, insisting that I know a great place nearby.
This is when the true purpose of the contrivances become apparent. She then reveals that the lunch buffet are actually taking place at her church and she wants me to come with her for lunch there. This was obviously not a date and she had never meant for it to be one, so I just said no and walked away.
I had no intention of ever speaking to this girl again as she had clearly not been interested in me as anything more than a convert for her church. She actually messaged me the next day and apologized for the weird lunch setup, but I still was not interested in meeting her again. She lobbed her own Hail Mary and sent me a link to her church, begging me to come check it out some time.
I looked up the church, known as the World Mission Society Church of God, and it is a completely batshit crazy cult even by religious standards. Apparently they believe that the second coming of Jesus was some Korean dude who died in the 80’s and that God the Mother (that’s a thing??) is a Korean chick born in the 40’s. I’m far from a religious scholar but that even stands out to me as nuttier than elephant shit.
After I read about her church, I deleted her from my phone entirely and made a concerted effort not to return to the place where I first met her. If that means never meeting up with that stewardess again, which it likely does, then it’s still entirely worth it. No thank you, culties.