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Girl Has Tongue Operation to Speak Korean: Admirable or Absurd?

Living 2011/08/12 21:13:15
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Many of us have at least one good hobby we enjoy, whether it be pick-up games at your closest basketball court, playing guitar, or filling out Sudoku puzzles. And some of us take our hobbies more seriously than others.

Rhiannon Brooksbank–Jones is one of those super-serious hobbyists.

According to The Telegraph, the 19-year-old British student is so passionate about studying the Korean language she actually had an operation on her tongue to make it easier for her to pronounce it with a native accent.

She explained, "I'd been learning Korean for about two years, and my speaking level was high, but I was really struggling with particular sounds. It became apparent after a little while that I was having trouble with the Korean letter 'L' ... and that my tongue was too short ... The surgical procedure was my only option."

The surgery was a 15-minute operation called a "lingual frenectomy." Doctors made an incision in the flap of skin under her tongue (called the lingual frenulum) which essentially makes her tongue longer and more flexible.

Brooksbank-Jones says her operation was a success.

"My pronunciation was very 'foreign,'" she said, "but now I can speak with a native Korean accent."

She apparently plans to study Korean at the college level and eventually live in the country, though she has yet to visit.

Let's hope she likes it as much as she thinks she will. For her sake.
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Top Opinion

  • melody_K 2011/08/12 23:31:27 (edited)
    Admirable
    melody_K
    +22
    I wouldn't say 'admirable', but seems pretty harmless. It is not much different than other elective surgeries, and seems (maybe) to serve a better, or much of the same purpose.

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Opinions

  • Hey_Jud... Eva 2011/08/16 11:18:20
    Hey_Jude1961
    So that's why I can't roll my Rs...
    Nope. Not gonna go it...
  • Eva Hey_Jud... 2011/08/16 22:53:47
    Eva
    +1
    Well right, but if it gets in the way of speech-- my father had a speech impediment-- I can understand it.
  • nails 2011/08/15 23:55:23
    Absurd
    nails
    Need I say more?
  • MissDiva 2011/08/15 23:44:17
    Absurd
    MissDiva
    What?!?!?!
  • Diane 2011/08/15 23:22:58
    Admirable
    Diane
    Cool.
  • JDHARTLV 2011/08/15 23:05:04
    Absurd
    JDHARTLV
    +1
    She should have started with the empty space between her ears.
  • greek babe 2011/08/15 22:46:48 (edited)
    Absurd
    greek babe
    +1
    hey i speak 2 languages flueant nah she's a bit of idiot bdammmmmmmm ugky yukkkkkkkkk
  • Eva greek babe 2011/08/16 00:05:59
    Eva
    +4
    I might believe that if I could understand your English.
  • MERL Eva 2011/10/30 04:06:25
    MERL
    I HAVE A GOOD FRIEND IN THE USA THAT WAS BORN AND RAISED IN HONG KONG..TWO BLOCKS AWAY NO ONE COULD UNDERSTAND HIS DIALECT....INCLUDING HIS OWN UNCLE
  • Eva MERL 2011/11/02 18:35:52
    Eva
    Yes, but that's entirely different from horrendous typing.
  • MERL greek babe 2011/10/30 04:06:30
    MERL
    NAUGH HI NEGA HO PAN YOW SIFU SI OOH LUM COW SOW. NAUGH HI MAY EE COUGH YEN
  • TurtleShroom 2011/08/15 22:45:25
    Admirable
    TurtleShroom
    +6
    It's a common fact that an accent is inescapable and even worse in foreign tongues. I am a proud Southerner and carry the thick drawl my residency so requires. I had to take Spanish classes when I was younger, and we all joked about just how much we all butchered that language. You haven't laughed until you've heard a man from the Deep South speak in Spanish. My Spanish is as accented as a Spanish-speaking Hispanic's English, and no matter how fluent I could become, I would forever bear the mark of the accent: a mark that says "I spoke another language before this one".

    I see no moral, legal, ethical, or even biological problem with this. Heck, I even find it quite nifty.I didn't know modern medicine could even DO that. This girl has a devotion to speaking Korean, and she could get an excellent career as a translator or linguicist. She could translate new English words and slang- "blog" or "muffin top" are two recent examples -into Korean (an ever-needed art in all tongues), and allow for greater communication.

    Is this admirable? Yes, in that I admire and respect her dedication and commend her for pursuing her passion. No, though, in the sense that I'd do it.

    I hope she succeeds and propsers in what she's chosen to do with her life.
  • CommonSense 2011/08/15 22:40:31
    Absurd
    CommonSense
    But if she wants to spend the money on it and a doctor is willing to do it. It's her decision. I still wouldn't do it. I'd probably try a dialect coach first. Perhaps she didn't think of that as being an "option."
  • Pocahontas 2011/08/15 22:25:51
    Admirable
    Pocahontas
    +1
    what's so bad about it? that's okay...
  • MOMMA THOMAS 2011/08/15 21:53:57
    Absurd
    MOMMA THOMAS
    DON'T GET IT. I UNDERSTAND NON AMERICANS WHO SPEAK ENGLISH WITH "THEIR PRONUNCIATIONS."
  • Priorchaos 2011/08/15 21:33:35
    Admirable
    Priorchaos
    +2
    The amount of dedication she shows for the korean language I hope she gets a career utilizing it.
  • chas 2011/08/15 21:21:16
    Absurd
    chas
    +1
    muy LOCO. But, then again- she is 19, and has free-will, and $$$. I doubt the BHS paid for it !!!
  • OzSurfer 2011/08/15 21:09:23
    Admirable
    OzSurfer
    +2
    I wonder if they do operations to make Australians sound more British? When I say hello it comes out "gidday mate" :)
  • tinaluwho OzSurfer 2011/08/15 22:00:59
  • twinkie 2011/08/15 20:43:12
    Absurd
    twinkie
    +1
    I have a friend with a facility for languages and speaks several with accents that sound like a native, even if he knows very little of the actual language. Korean is not among them, but he is at least conversational in Lao and Thai and people from those countries think he sounds like a native. Surgery was not necessary but he is an auditory learner and those two were taught to him by his stepmother who was Laotian..
  • ♫♪‼Chloey Arddun‼♫♪ 2011/08/15 20:32:01 (edited)
    Absurd
    ♫♪‼Chloey Arddun‼♫♪
    strange and kind of pointless.
  • Arnie 2011/08/15 20:15:48
    Absurd
    Arnie
    I wouldnt do that to improve any speaking problem... just write it down :-p
  • Stuart 2011/08/15 20:07:58
    Admirable
    Stuart
    +1
    This is not an uncommon thing especially among Koreans who want to speak English better. It only lengthens it by a millimeter or two. Some Korean parents have this done to there children in the belief English would be easier. That is the odd thing. Koreans try to lengthen their tongues but she is lengthening hers to speak Korean.
  • William Major 2011/08/15 20:07:32
    Absurd
    William Major
    +1
    how about hard work to learn instead of instant plastic surgery. f**king Americans
  • SuperTr... William... 2011/08/15 20:15:11
    SuperTrooper
    +2
    Dumbass "the 19-year-old British student"
  • indiann... William... 2011/08/15 21:48:50
    indianna209
    +1
    What's an American?
  • sydneew... William... 2011/08/15 22:40:52
    sydneewashere☮
    +1
    I have a feeling you didn't read the description.
  • Michael... William... 2011/08/16 00:54:16
    MichaelDillon
    Speak to my avatar!
  • Hey_Jud... William... 2011/08/16 11:25:46
    Hey_Jude1961
    It says she's British in the article. Which means she's not an American.
    Your comment was rude to start with and ended with ignorance.
  • Cymech Dragon 2011/08/15 20:07:21
    Admirable
    Cymech Dragon
    Neither absurd nor admirable; she's just doing something harmless.
  • jaseyrae1 2011/08/15 20:05:02
    Admirable
    jaseyrae1
    Not admirable but it's not an uncommon procedure and is done for a variety of reasons.
  • Catherine Peterson 2011/08/15 20:01:33
    Admirable
    Catherine Peterson
    +1
    I know people who have had similar surgeries just to speak their native language... it's not terribly different!
  • toti 2011/08/15 19:57:17
    Admirable
    toti
    +3
    I chose admirable because anyone that will go through this kind of procedure to improve a foreign language impresses me. I had no idea that such a surgery was possible for language or pronunciation acquisition, so that is cool in itself. Would this young woman been featured on Sodahead if she'd gone in for breast augmentation surgery to further her career as an actress or server at Hooters? Best of luck to Ms. Brooksbank-Jones in her studies and travels abroad!
  • Princess Milissa 2011/08/15 19:56:13
    Absurd
    Princess Milissa
    nut case
  • Princes... Princes... 2011/08/15 19:58:21
    Princess Milissa
    Maybe she supports our US jobs going to Korea?!
  • griffin... Princes... 2011/08/15 20:22:58
    griffinigin
    +1
    But she isnt from the US so what does it matter to her
  • sydneew... Princes... 2011/08/15 22:41:43
    sydneewashere☮
    She's British and there is nothing 'nutty' about it.
  • JJ 2011/08/15 19:49:41
    Admirable
    JJ
    +2
    Well, if thats what she wants to do and seems to be seious about it, so, I would think the non-serious operation isn't so bad.
  • stevie.luplow 2011/08/15 19:22:50
    Admirable
    stevie.luplow
    +4
    It's for a better reason than making your tongue into a snakes tongue or even getting a tattoo or boob job. And what harm has it done if it improves what she wants? And really....what is the harm?
  • Monolith 2011/08/15 19:00:32
    Admirable
    Monolith
    +1
    If you've got it flaunt it!

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