Many people are familiar with the term grasshopper and with its origins in the 1970s TV show Kung Fu. My question is, is this just a one off, or are there any other terms for higher levels of learning/awareness/whatever in the same vein? In other words, grasshopper means novice or beginner; are there any similar terms for intermediate, skilled, expert, and/or master?

Sample sentence: "Ah so, grasshopper, you have learned much, and from now on I shall call you [intermediate term] in recognition of your growing abilities."

closed as primarily opinion-based by NVZ, Hellion, Phil Sweet, ab2, Rory Alsop Dec 2 '16 at 8:59

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  • Welcome to the site! FWIW, I've never heard of this term. – Cerberus Nov 30 '16 at 19:16
  • I can't recall other names that occurred after that one. – BenL Nov 30 '16 at 20:21
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    The thing is, "grasshopper" was Master Po's nickname for Kwai Chang Caine. It was NOT a generic term he used for any and all of his students and it was not a reflection of Caine's skill level. He continued to call Caine "grasshopper" from Caine's first entry into the monastery until he left to seek his own path. – Hellion Nov 30 '16 at 21:57
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    @Phil It's not a false premise. The term grasshopper, stemming from the show Kung Fu, is used to refer to a novice. I'm sure plenty of uses can be found. The Urban Dictionary has this in its top definition, while also containing the much less remembered specific origin of the scene & circumstances in which Cain sees a grasshopper. I'm familiar with the show (own the 3 DVD set), use the term, but don't necessarily recall the scene. – Alan Carmack Dec 1 '16 at 0:39
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    A practitioner of kung fu who trains for 17 years, finally achieves the status of master, and then dies within 24 hours is, I believe, termed a cicada. – Sven Yargs Dec 1 '16 at 17:34

This is just a one-off term. There is no commonly-understood successor.

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