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Thread: Another deviation from the "Definition of Pro" thread

  1. #1
    Daihonmei
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    Another deviation from the "Definition of Pro" thread

    I'm pretty tight with four dealers and 3 breeders. Any of which would be willing to let me buy a fish and keep it at their place till it is a Stonking GC contender.
    We agree to follow accepted and time-honored practices. We both want to have our names attached to GC's, or at least remakable fish that were given their public due.
    So...."He" picks it out since "he" knows his fish. $300 dollars now, $50 a year and when the Momma Pops he tells me and I have him run it to a show. I get the fish back at my Place the day after the show where it rapidly falls apart, and he gets a better rep and more business. We both win!
    but shouldn't the Trophy go in "his" office? So why is it "he" can't show the fish to begin with?
    because of the acceptance of a practice that misplaces who achieved the accomplishment.

  2. #2
    Tategoi
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    I was just reading one of my back issues of KB, which had in it an interview with a hobbyist who had won a very prestigious show. The GC lived in the dealer's pond, was taken to the show by the dealer, and went home with the dealer. Why? Because the owner noted that he was "too affectionate" with his own koi and overfed them--and had ruined many doing so.

    He was very open about this making me think that the Japanese are not as concerned with the "hobbyist as koikeeper before the win" issues as we seem to be here in the US.
    ChrisC

  3. #3
    Jumbo
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    Chris, Luke is just stirring the pond as he always does just about 30 days before he gets kicked off yet another board! LOL

    In Japan, there exists a serious relationship between the koi professional and his customers. He puts koi back in the mud pond for the owner, moves them, brings them to a show and back again after treating them for parasites at his own facility. This has been the tradition for the last 40 years or so. I think this also clearly demonstrates that one is a professional and the other is an amateur! No way to confuse the two! Japanese hobbyists are also for the most part, extremely honorable people and respectful people. A Japanese person for instance, would never question his medical doctor in matters concerning his own health because it is strictly the doctor's business! Its odd to hear that when you ask about a Japanese friends health to be told that the Doctor did not share that information but they have full confidence in his abilities?! So as I said before, some things just don't translate to our more aggressive and individualistic culture. And in Japan, a professional is the primary teacher of the hobbyist and the advisor to a koi club. This is always a roll of outsider assisting in making the hobby possible and enjoyable. You can understand then why no self respecting professional would want to be a mere hobbyist! Their roll is distinct and important- and it pays well to boot! It is a thing of honor and something to be proud of- they are professionals.

    JR

  4. #4
    Tategoi
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    The relationship you describe really comes across in the KB DVD of Momotaro's operation. I recall that he redirects one hobbyist's choice of fish to show, tells them which fish merit the mud pond and the "big pond" etc. Seems like a symbiotic relationship in that culture. The professional gets to use a lifetime of expertise, and the hobbyist gets to participate in culture of koi without inadvertently humiliating him or herself.

    In our culture, mastery of a hobby would require that we eventually rise above the level where the input of professionals outweighs our own "informed" opinion. I am guessing that your judgements get questioned on a regular basis for this reason by a certain type of person in the hobby.

    For myself I know that I have come to enjoy the communal nature of koi keeping. Friends helping each other with fish, club members standing around tanks talking about koi, people inviting people they hardly know to spend time learning (talking about our own Dick Benbow here...)

    Joy in each other's wins, and seeing great fish just seems more fun than treating the dealers and winning hobbyists as though their dealings are somehow "smarmy."

    Life's too short.
    ChrisC

  5. #5
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    I think that you said it well and I agree with about 99% of what you have said.
    Smarmy dealers? O yea, they exist- big time actually- the stories I could tell! But like all businesses and professionals only a few bad apples spoil the reputation of the bunch. This is even the case in Japan where a few conmen have been identified in the herd. The Chiba dealers often refer to the breeders in the mountains as ' the bandits' in Japanese- true! One tells foreign dealers he is from a noble samauri family. Another sells males as females all day long. And a another I know, 'switches' the names of breeders to suit the demand from abroad. Finally another, a very famous one, carves the heads of almost every tosai with promise- making attractive and unusual head patterns in tosai stock. You can fine scaple blades laying around in the greenhouse that houses the tosai. So this is the world of nishikigoi distribution. Thery are not all devils or all saints. Just people trying to make a living, just too aggressively sometimes. JR

  6. #6
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    The colorful side of the biz....

    After having said how positive I would like to stay about the hobby, JR, you have now whetted my appetite for a "Crooks in Koi" article!

    I think I will need a tour guide on my first trip to Japan.
    ChrisC

  7. #7
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    haha ah! Japan, the land of contradictions! JR

  8. #8
    Oyagoi bekko's Avatar
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    Sorry to drift off the subject a bit here....

    JR, I've heard of guys scraping the beni on the head. Is this what you're talking about? If so, how does the head shiro look after the operation? More yellow? Doesn't the beni come back?

    I have a kohaku who jumped and whacked her head on the boardwalk, knocking off a chunk of skin. Now, a year later, the scared spot is red again.

    But back to the topic...

    Luke, the situation you describe sounds like a reasonable thing to do and I do not see anything wrong with it. If, indeed, the show is "all about the koi", then you have improved the show for everyone's benefit. There are really three winners: you, the breeder, and the show. Trophies take up shelf/attic space and collect dust so I'm sure the breeder and the show would be just as happy with a photo of the proud owner.

    -steve hopkins

  9. #9
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    Hi Steve, yes that is what I'm talking about in that comment. Chris asked about it in another thread above. Often it does come back but always in an obliterated form. JR

  10. #10
    Daihonmei
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    Quote Originally Posted by bekko
    Sorry to drift off the subject a bit here....

    JR, I've heard of guys scraping the beni on the head. Is this what you're talking about? If so, how does the head shiro look after the operation? More yellow? Doesn't the beni come back?

    I have a kohaku who jumped and whacked her head on the boardwalk, knocking off a chunk of skin. Now, a year later, the scared spot is red again.

    But back to the topic...

    Luke, the situation you describe sounds like a reasonable thing to do and I do not see anything wrong with it. If, indeed, the show is "all about the koi", then you have improved the show for everyone's benefit. There are really three winners: you, the breeder, and the show. Trophies take up shelf/attic space and collect dust so I'm sure the breeder and the show would be just as happy with a photo of the proud owner.

    -steve hopkins

    and the losers are the Hobbyists who bothered to raise koi and have a vested interest in them and bring them to the show and get knocked down by a "Breeder's Fish" albeit "owned for years" by a "hobbyist...and also the show loses because others don't show their koi because they don't want to compete with the dealer's koi...and the non-showers lose becayse they are disheartened by "Dealer/breeder fish being entered as being a Hobbyist's fish. And the person coming to the show to see the fish loses because they don't get to see what the people who have stopped bringing their fish to shows because they don't like "Dealer's Hobby Fish either.
    And the worst scenario is the poor schmoh that brings his koi to the show only to lose to the dealers' fish when some total retard buys an expensive fish and the dealer convinces them to let him enter it in the show for them (because he has seen what is in the show and knows HIS koi will beat it and therefore he benefits by making the Tard buyer feel like they did something, and the dealer gets the benefit of his name getting called out at the banquet.

    Let the dealers enter their fish if they want, but disguising it as a "Hobbyist's Fish is pure BS.



    And please note I have NOT made this personal, just general observations and deductions.

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