Patience, Grasshopper?

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deven | 06:33 Fri 12th Mar 2004 | Phrases & Sayings
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People often impart sagely wisdom with references to 'grasshopper' (as the student), as in 'Patience, grasshopper.' Where did this come from? Is this a reference to a book or movie? Where did it originate?


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It's from the 1970s series Kung Fu, the main character (played by David Carradine) was given philosophical advice by 2 wise old men (I think one was called Khan), on how to sort out the problems he met on his journeys (which always involved lots of martial arts fighting). One of the old men called him "Grasshopper" and would say things like "ah, Grasshopper" or "patience Grasshopper" leading to all the kids at my school copying him with fake Chines accents! I didn't know people still said it though.
Forgot to mention that the other thing it was obligatory to do whilst attempting a Chinese accent in the playground and saying "ah, Grasshopper", was to pull the sides of your eyes in an effort to to look Oriental. This was hilarious when you were 7!
the program was called Kung Fu, starred david Carradine as Kwai Chang Kane, half oriental and half american. There is a sequel floating around at the moment where DC has an adult son who is a cop in ?Los Angeles.....yes I am a sad person with no life
Indeed. It was mandatory to pronounce it 'Glasshoppa'.
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I don't hear people repeat it in person or with a Chinese accent -- I see it online a lot, on Slashdot for example.

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