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THE BOYZ’s Eric Explains How A Cultural Misunderstanding Led Him To Be Mistaken For A “Thief”


A seemingly innocent action nearly caused him to be reported to police.

THE BOYZ‘s YounghoonEric, and Sunwoo were the most recent guests on The K-Star Next Door, hosted by TV personality and actor Jonathan Thona.

During the episode, Jonathan Thona put the members in the “hot seat,” asking them questions about unexpected but actual situations, which the members were tasked with explaining.

(From left:) Jonathan Thona, THE BOYZ’s Younghoon, Eric, and Sunwoo | @IST_THEBOYZ/Instagram

The questions became more unexpected and hilarious as the episode continued, and Jonathan Thona shocked the members when he asked Eric about a close call he had in Japan.

Jonathan Thona approached the subject by hilariously declaring that Eric was “caught stealing electricity” when he was in Japan, but it wasn’t what viewers might think.

The three THE BOYZ members quickly clarified, launching into the story of a cultural misunderstanding that led a gentleman to nearly call the cops on Eric.

Eric explained that he and Juyeon visited Japan in January and stopped by a convenience store when Eric’s phone battery died.

When Eric bought a new battery, Juyeon wisely suggested they test it before leaving the store to save them the trouble of returning it if it were defective.

Eric innocently plugged his phone into an outlet in the corner of the store, waiting for it to charge enough to turn on again.

He revealed that as soon as the screen turned on, he was unexpectedly approached by a man he didn’t know.

Eric explained that he didn’t understand Japanese, so he used a translator app to see what the gentleman was saying to him.

Through the app, the man accused him of “stealing electricity” and alerted the idol that he was “calling the police.

THE BOYZ members weren’t sure what to do in the situation but explained they were from Korea and weren’t aware it was an issue while apologizing for the misunderstanding.

In Japan, using electrical outlets in public spaces not intended for consumer use is generally discouraged and often considered impolite. Instead, designated charging stations are commonly available in various establishments such as stores and cafes. Many of these stations are offered either for free or for a small fee.

Since it’s generally an “unspoken rule,” it’s understood that persons from other countries may not be aware that it’s discouraged to use them. Sunwoo elaborated that it’s “[the] culture” in Japan. Eric hilariously concluded that he “suddenly became a thief” and faced a “close call.”

Thankfully, Eric’s apology and explanation worked, and he was able to leave the situation without the police being called.

During the same episode, Sunwoo opened up about a photo he jokingly asked fans not to share, because he didn’t want to know if it was edited. Check out what Sunwoo describes as a “dangerous photo” in the article below!

THE BOYZ’s Sunwoo Explains Why He Asked Fans Not To Release A “Dangerous” Photo


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