By Grabthar’s Hammer, that little boy is tenacious. Many children would have given up after a few tries, and pitched a fit. Of course not giving up and not pitching a fit is the purpose of his Tae Kwon Do classes, not breaking boards. Like most martial arts, Tae Kwon Do is more a code of behavior than a recipe for assaults. Here’s the five tenets of Tae Kwon Do:
Courtesy (yeui / 예의)
Integrity (yeomchi / 염치)
Perseverance (innae / 인내)
Self-control (geukgi / 극기)
Indomitable spirit (baekjeolbulgul / 백절불굴)
Little kids could use more of that type of discipline these days. Their parents probably need it even more.
The gyosannim strikes just the right balance between upholding order and offering encouragement. He’s fifty percent of the equation here. He wants to give that little boy his white belt, and send him home a hero. Despite his cheerful demeanor and unfailing encouragement, there’s no way grade inflation is going to enter the dojang.
We can all learn a lot from that little boy, and his teacher. Personally, I’m going to yell HYAH! before I press the button on the coffeemaker. Couldn’t hurt.