Saturday, October 06, 2012

Office Space

I managed to sneak my way into getting an office in the university.  And by sneak, I really mean ask nicely.  Anyway, I happen to share an office with a Korean PhD student.  We have the most intellectually stimulating academic conversations (in English of course) because of our shared connection with Korea.  He's doing a discourse analysis examining Korean school textbooks specifically focusing on fostering competition.  He's incredibly smart, articulate, and a critical thinker at heart.  Yesterday I was telling him about how I'm quite interested in the process of becoming a critical thinker in a society (Korea) that does not foster a kind of 'free think'.

I was giving him an example of how some Koreans I know believe everything they hear on the news as truth without critically examining the purpose or motives.  Who benefits from this news?  I went on to give an example about how some Korean I know believe in fan death.

The Korean doctoral student stopped me and said "What do you mean?  Fan death is real!"

Ummmmmm.....please tell me I'm not the only one who doesn't believe in fan death.  Is he for real?  I then went on to ask him if it was premeditated murder if I turned on a fan while my husband was sleeping and shut the doors and windows.  He said that it is still possible to die EVEN IF the doors and windows are open.

Are you kidding me?

Tomorrow I'm bringing my fan to the office!

All jokes aside -- after I wrote this post last night, I spent the next hour typing "fan death" into the University of Regina academic database searching for an answer.


권투선수 에이미 [Amy] said...

Hahahahaha... I love it!!!
My hubby totally got on my case this past summer about "fan death". He freaked out so many times about it so I thought I'd stage my own mock death -- he didn't find it too funny though:(
So, after all that searching online, what answer did you come up with?! I'm curious... don't make me search out the answer too... hahahaha

Anonymous said...


This post really made me laugh :)

Jacky said...

This websites gives the only likely scenarios where death by fan can actually happen:'s really hard to persuade Koreans of this. *sigh*

Jacky said...

I wanted to add that I was so frustratingly hot at my boyfriend's parents' house because they had no AC and only a fan during the summer. I kept waking up when I was too hot to turn the fan back on--it could only be turned on with a timer!

Why am I here??? said...

I did not find any incident where it said (in English) that fan death was the single cause of death. NOTHING!

Hey Jacky, yah I read that one from start to finish a couple of time. Thanks for that link!

Foreigner Joy said...

You can take the Korean out of Korea, but you'll never take the fan death away from them.

Anonymous said...

1Fan death still doesn't seem likely, but that link does a good job explaining it. The example about North Americans believing red wine a day is good for you without any supporting evidence is a great example how hard it's to convince people once they've decided on certain things.

Jolene - EverydayFoodie said...

That is super cool that you have an office :-)

John from Daejeon said...

Barbara Mikkelson provides the best argument against "fan death" that I've come across.

It makes even more sense after all that "Mad Cow Madness" that plagued South Korea not that long ago. And just how have died on the peninsula due to that popular Korean Internet belief?

Why am I here??? said...

Hey John, just read it! Thanks :) Yes, that's the most sound argument I've seen thus far