Some power drunk asshole just attacked my students. I heard him before I saw him, screaming from inside his car for the "fucking son of a bitch little bastards" (rough translation) to get out of the street. That's fair enough, I guess, if you're an asshole. Were they in the street? Yes. Were they in the middle of the street? No. Is it even remotely uncommon for people to walk in the street in Korea, particularly in smaller neighborhoods? No. Were there two whole huge completely empty lanes available to this fine specimen of humanity, which my students were nowhere near even breathing in the direction of? Yes. But an asshole's an asshole, I guess.
What wasn't alright was when the students, being the very small, very timid, and very obedient students that they are, started to make for the sidewalk, and he swerved his car over nearly hitting one of them to cut them off and corner them in so that he could then get out and continue to scream at them, while raising his fist, threatening to punch them in their faces. Even for an asshole, that's pretty low.
So I crossed the street. Because nothing throws a situation like that off kilter quicker than a foreigner showing up. The man was screaming at the boys to get the fuck on the sidewalk, yet was blocking their path to the sidewalk with his car on one side and his fist on the other. "Hey guys! Come here." I put my arm out in front of the man's fist to form a kind of very loose barricade and kind of herded them back in my direction. I got them all up on the sidewalk, except for one who had hidden behind a car and ended up stuck on the other side of the barrier between the sidewalk and the street. He started to walk back in the now bewildered man's direction to follow us up, but I grabbed his wrist over the barrier and said, "No. Don't do that. Just come here. Climb over." We pulled him over and the boys stood there for a minute looking utterly terrified, as the man continued to mutter obscenities and debated about getting back in his car. "Just walk, guys. Come on. Go. Everybody okay?"
"Yes, Teacher. Okay."
It's my saving grace as a foreigner sometimes that people are too stunned to scream at me. I don't think that guy was in any way, shape or form finished with his power trip, and had I been a young female Korean teacher, I'm pretty sure he would have turned his attention to me. As it was, he didn't know what to do, and eventually just got back in his car and drove away. Ass. Complete and total ass.