Wat's In A Name?
From the last few posts in the previous blog going off about names and such, it reminded me of a blog I did waaaay back on January 31, 2008.
Yup, I remembered that blog in particular because it was about, names. Here's a blast from da past with some updated editing 😀 :
As most 'Kwonics' have figured out by now, I have an alias...but it's not what you tink. Sure I'm unemployed by day, blogger at night - wait, I'm li'dat regardless. Nevah mind.
It's that my "real" first name name is Hyung Suk, not Lance. And no, "Braddah" is not on my State ID.
Lance is for all those who can't say 'Hyung' without butchering it and believe me, you would tink that people living in Hawaii were more adept in pronouncing foreign - mainly asian - words.... Not!
Growing up with that name was traumatics! Imagine a five year old in school trying to make friends responding to "wat your name?" and having to repeat it a dozen times before da tease fest begins or they no like be friends already cause your name is too hard.
Aftah years of going through da same routine, I've had time to develop a fool proof method of introducing myself (it also helped alleviate the need for psychotherapy later). My responses to explain 'how' fo' say my name depended on who I'm speaking to.
For locals and asians, not too bad because I can say it a few times and they get it...most of the time. For haoles and oddahs, I say it once and depending on how they say it back determines da next course of action. If they say "could you say that again?" or just have a blank look and nevah even try, I just say "call me 'Lance'". Da usual response? "Oh, that's (way) better".
That's better?! Better than my God given birth name from my foreign born parents who immigrated from Korea to give me and my brother a better life and opportunity than we couldn't possibly have back at our birth country better?!
Wassup Wit Dat!
Eazy there tigah... woooo-saaaa. Hee hee. Jus' kidding, but really... better or easier?
Having a foreign name was much tougher "back in da day" than it is today. At least now there's more mainstream exposure in society so hearing a "foreign name" isn't so shell-shocking now as it was then.
In case you haven't figured it out by now, most asian names (not including Japanese but correct me if I'm mistaken) has two-part first names. Koreans always have two-parts although most people refer to just the first part. There's an exception wen a moniker develops wit da second part. Fo' realz, I had a childhood friend named, Sang Cho. He liked to eat nachos. His new "lifetime" name was Na-cho - only if life was that simple yeah?
Take for example words you hear almost everyday like...karaoke. Yeah, kah-ra-o-kay - not kara-o-key. What about Tae Kwon Do. Tay-Kwon-Dough - not Thai-Kwon-Do. Have you ever heard of Thai-gu? No, it's not an island off Thailand, try "cuttlefish". It's pronounced Tay-goo (Taegu). Then there's kah-ra-tay - not kar-ra-teee (karate).
The funny thing is that these words being broadcast by TV & movies have been so mainstream already that everyone thinks that's how it's said. Sadly, still today, "butchering" is okay and you wondah why people like me "change" our name or conjure up new ways to make things "easier". 🙄
It wasn't that we - with the foreign names - were ashamed of our God given names, it was that the odds were against us of it being pronounced right even aftah several attempts. While some genuinely tried, there were others that were straight out mean. At work - or at least wen I had a job - I always used 'Lance' because it was just easier on all ends so wen I hea' "Lance", I know it's usually a co-worker or someone I've met outside of friends. Not to say some of my friends don't call me Lance but usually it's like a tell-tale of who I'm speaking to depending wat name I'm being called jus' like "Braddah Lance" I know is fo' da blog.
Then there's the dreaded "I've only known you as 'Hyung' or 'Lance'" and calling you one or the other would be "weird". "Braddah Lance" is pretty easy no? 😛
What else do people 'butcher'? What have you heard that 'irks' you when it's mispronounced or misrepresented?
btw, fo' all da Hooked on Phonics peeps - it's Hyung - 'young' with a 'H' in front said smoothly in one syllable. It's not even remotely close to Hy's Steak House so no go there and I no smoke pot so it's not High-yung.
No mattah. Call me wat you like.... but how you call me, will mattah how I call you. 😉 😉