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When I meet someone new, I will often ask them what they do.

~ While this may be an unwanted throwback from my years in Korea (where the first five questions are always: Where are you from? How old are you? Are you married? (And why not? ㅋㅋ) What do you do? and… the pièce de ré·sis·tance: How much do you make?)

I know they are often inappropriate, but still, often find myself wanting to ask at least some of these of new acquaintances. I resist, but the acculturation is strong in me, especially the j.o.b. question – it a difficult thing to ignore. So I ask…

Now, if I ask you what you do, it’s never to categorize or judge. I don’t care how much you make or what status your particular career choice confers. The query is for two things only:

First, to find some common point of interest (however great or small).

And second (and more importantly), it’s to see if you love what you do… if it turns you on… inspires and excites you, if it makes you smile.

If not, the conversation will move on to find what you do love… that is the only goal.

OK, 20+ years overseas may have made me weird. So what do you think?

And do you ask any questions that some may find a bit off? What would you say to explain?

To learn more about Korean culture, check out our Korean Collection (including Korean Slang – As much as a Rat’s Tail) today.

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