But when you deal with people from your own culture, there is nuance upon nuance upon nuance to the point that people lose sight of what is real or not-real. When you speak with someone of your own culture, there is so much that you do share that you feel like everything has to be perfect. You think that you completely understand everything that the other person has to say, or vice versa, when you really don't. If you were speaking to someone who barely knew your language, you'd at least know that it was easy to mean completely different things from what you wound up saying or the other person wound up hearing. But in your own, you mistake fluency for perfection. And nothing, nothing, is perfect. Sometimes, the more you think you know, the less you are capable of perceiving.
I know so very, very little about the Japanese language and culture. But at least, they recognize that I care. That I try. That I respect. That I am capable of making progress. And sometimes, I think it would be worth sacrificing all the capability I have already achieved in my own culture to get the recognition that I am trying - and the perception of the effort, rather than the cookie-cutter judgment of my precise presentation - in another.