Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Over the weekend we had dinner with our friend John Tangko. He said, “Here’s something that is strange about you Americans: you put so much importance on your names. You want people to call you by the right name and you don’t like it if they spell it wrong. It isn’t like that for us. I don’t care what you call me or if you ever call me by my name. You don’t even know my first name.” Then he turned to one of the other guests, and said to him, “What is my first name? I can’t ever pronounce it right.” His friend told him that it is Mjeung. We all, including John, practiced saying it for a minute. We then asked John how he came to be called John, and he said that it was the name chosen for him when he got baptized as a child.

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