HAHAHA couldn't agree more!
Originally Posted by Errant108
Good discussion imo. I liked the cement vs. concrete analogy (let's see if I can remember to not call the sidewalk cement).
1. All activities one does in life have jargon associated with them. 99% of the time one picks up the correct terms for things and adopts them without thinking twice, but some people are offended by having to learn an obviously non-English word and some others are just so lazy that using a foreign word which takes 2% more brainpower is just too much effort for them. Fine, maybe there's a good reason somewhere for not learning the jargon, but neither ethnocentrism nor laziness are it. My father is 65 years old and he manages to ask for me for a "link", not "the little blue text that I can click on" like he did when he first began learning how to use a computer. I didn't have to berate him "Gawd, it's called a link you nub" either.
2. Learning the Korean name for a kick won't improve the kick, but it also won't detract from the kick either. Unless the instructor is wasting 15 minutes of class time teaching vocabulary, just suck it up. Sure sometimes Westerners overdo it and become gross parodies of Asian culture, but learning a tiny bit about another culture is part of the overall TMA experience. I know some people just want to learn how to punch and kick, and there's nothing wrong with that, but as long as it doesn't detract from your training, I don't see how learning something new is bad...ever.
My karate instructor's perspective was that he was that learning to be proficient came first, but he also wanted us to become knowledgeable instructors some day, "doctors of karate". He fell a bit short (I mean, our knowledge of tradition and history is pathetic compared to some of the koryu guys on this site), but it was a noble goal nonetheless imho. I have no problem calling a sidekick a sidekick in class, but it's nice to to know if I talk to another karate practictioner and they say "yoko geri" I can follow the conversation instead of going "Huh, whasdat? I dun think we did dat in our krotty class, hur hur hur."
3. Knowing something is wrong and continuing to do it the wrong when you know better is a character defect. It might be a small defect when it concerns a minor wrong, but being a tiny bit better is still better than being a tiny bit worse any way you slice it. Now, I don't go out of my way to research the right way to say all my Japanese terms, but you have to be a real piece of work to actually have a native or fluent speaker do the work for you, telling you "it's pronounced like X not Y" and ignore them. Chances are, this is actually a part of your overall personality and doesn't just extend to learning Korean words in your tkd class.
4. Now, #3 being said, there's a right and wrong time/place/way to correct someone. If a native Japanese speaker is constantly stopping me midsentence while I instruct (or stopping their own workout), then we have a problem. This is probably a small minority of cases though. I remember reading about the usage of "Osu" in Japan, and how it basically wasn't used how we imagined it (if you don't know, it's more of a verbal high-five than something reverent). I didn't interrupt my instructor in the middle of his class and lecture him like a smart-ass. I sent him an email with the article I read and said, "Hey check this out, they don't use 'osu' in Japan like we thought."
Last edited by maofas; 4/15/2008 5:18pm at .