It has been said that imitation is the best form of flattery. You have to admit though, watching someone copy you can sometimes be irritating as it feels like they’re ripping off your hard work.
Social media influencer Cathryn Li (李元玲) recently posted a photo of herself doing a breakdancing pose to promote a shoe brand. While it looked impressive, Malaysian breakdancer Sam Jee Lek felt otherwise.
A few days ago, Cathryn posted a series of promotional pictures with the theme hip-hop. One of them was an ‘airchair’ pose which looked fairly impressive. However, hip-hop fans were dissatisfied with the pose and brought it up to Sam, asking what he thought of it. Sam, otherwise known as LegO Sam, was the first-ever winner of the men’s breakdancing event in the 2019 SEA Games. As he is known for his expertise in breakdancing, many netizens wanted his professional opinion on the matter.
Sam responded by taking a picture of himself doing the same pose and asked netizens to compare the two. “I can’t do her angle,” he explained before commenting, “The heels and hands are too straight and the thumbs are not resting on the ground. (That’s impressive!)” Sam asked Cathryn to demonstrate how she had managed to pull off such a pose. He also added a playful-sounding, “Accept the challenge?” Sam did emphasise that he was not dissing anyone. He merely wanted to learn the truth, whether the photo was fake or real.
Cathryn later responded to Sam’s post via a private message. She explained the pose was merely to promote the shoes. “My pose was just inspired (by breakdancing),” she stated. “I didn’t say it’s an airchair.” Cathryn also said she was not a professional street dancer, however, she was willing to learn. “If my photos offend you, let me apologise sincerely first,” she said. She later took the photos down as well.
Sam responded to Cathryn’s messages, thanking her for being honest about the matter. He explained that as a B-Boy, he was sensitive to such things. “I don’t want others to casually use breakdancing as their content,” he stated. “After all, this is my specialty and profession. I don’t want other people’s ignorance treating my profession as a joke.” Sam offered to teach Cathryn how to do the proper pose and advised her not to deceive her fans, even over something as simple as an advertisement. “Be a good example to them,” he said. Sam added that he would not pursue the matter anymore.
Sam’s query into Cathryn’s pose caused some discussion among netizens. However, he was quick to shut them down, saying, “You must be brave to do what you think is right, no matter how others (view) you.” He thanked netizens for their support and hoped people would come to understand breakdancing better. “Peace and love!” he said, signing off.
We commend the two for handling the matter professionally and hope Cathryn does take up breakdancing. She might showcase another hidden talent and be really good at it!