the nikku

reflecting on ESL/EFL and its relation to faith

Monday, March 09, 2009

Chain of command story #2

Story #2:  I was out to eat with some friends Saturday night my European friend was saying how she can't understand why no one else ever stands up to her rude and always yelling boss - except for her.  When being yelled at she simply says:

Yeah, I understand.     はい!わかりました。

I'm doing my best.      がんばります。

It's just fine.              もういいです。

We asked our Japanese friends if they would ever talk back to their boss.  One doesn't currently have a job, and the other says her boss is great.  So this was a "what if" conversation.  Both of of our friends emphatically said no - they would never talk back to their boss. 

Well then what would you do?

"I'd just take it.  Endure it."

For how long?

"Until whenever."

Would you look for a different job?

"Not really, no."

Why not talk back? 

やっぱり、喧嘩が面倒だから。 yappari, kenka ga mendou dakara.    "Because fighting back is a pain."

But don't you feel like crap when they yell at you for no reason and don't listen to what you say? or harass you?

"Well yeah, but... まだ喧嘩より我慢の法がいい (mada kenka yori gaman hou ga ii) it's still better to put up with it than fight."

As westerners, it's simply inconceivable to think would talk like this about a work situation, but it happens all the time here - and it was like this when the economy was good too


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