I went to Hanan Market with Amelia-Teacher on Saturday. And the greatest thing happened. You can get pickles every where in Korea. Every where. But (and this is a big “but” if you are me), they are all those sweet pickles. No dill pickle goodness, and it makes me sad. Because I can tolerate sweet pickles, but I’m obsessed with dills, man. MMMM!!! And get this – they had dill fucking pickles at Hanan Market. HOORAY! There were two jars and I bought them both. They were only about $7 each (big jars too). I would have paid $20. I’m not kidding. I also found (and purchased) Pine Sol. I washed my floors, opened the window, lay down on the bed with my eyes closed and pretended to be at my moms’ house. It was glorious. Thanks, Amelia. I owe ya one. I’d give you a pickle, but I’m going to be hoarding those bastards.
Dance, Monkey. Dance.
After a disastrous and decision-doubting Tuesday and Wednesday, the week got progressively better. On Thursday, the Grand Poo-Bah and Second-Minion-in-Command came to observe my class and what we were doing for open house. After Tuesday, I was NOT looking forward to it, after everything I had done was brought in to question. But… oh glorious… the monkeys danced. They danced better that day than I could have ever hoped! I should have given them 100 stickers each, the little bastards were in such fine form. From saying things to make the observers laugh, to responding to my slightest command, they were fabulous. Key highlights include:
1. Grace READING the title of the book I was reading to them. To give you an idea of how cool this is – when these kids came to the school in February 2005, they didn’t know any English. And they are 5 years old. And my wee Graceland READ the freaking title. READ it. I love her.
2. At precisely 10:25, Amy says “Jodi-Teacher, it is water time”. Good job Amy! Way to prove that I taught you guys something about telling time.
3. When asked “What does a soldier do?”, Rino replied “Canada… come… Korea… take… Soldier… gun… stop Canada”. Yes, Rino. Yes. The Grand Poo-Bah and Second-Minion-in-Command were laughing so hard I thought they were going to fall out of their chairs.
4. At one point the monkeys were acting up, and I didn’t even have to say anything to settle them down. I raised one hand, and started a silent countdown from five. Before I got to zero, every one of those damned bastards were sitting nicely.
YES YES YES! And there were more great moments, and I felt so much better. Better about my kids, and about my decision to come here and teach. I wasn’t quite as depressed by Thursday afternoon.
Sugar High, Sugar Low
Friday was a weird-ass day. It was Pepero Day in Korea. Check out http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pepero_Day for more information on the shit. But all you basically need to know is that my kids were hopped up on sugar and as unstable as Charles Manson all day on Friday. Idiots. Also, I have a truckload of these effing Peperos. Because Friday was the day you give Peperos to your friends. And the monkeys want to be sure that they are my friend.
To highlight how whacked these kids were, I’ll tell you a wee story from my 5:30 class… my most advanced and oldest kids. On Friday, we were doing one of the exercises together. We had to pick something to teach “a friend” how to do, list the materials needed, and then write out the directions. We decided to do “make pizza”, and to make things easier, when the monkeys started listing toppings, I said we would just say “toppings”. They didn’t stop with toppings. A-holes. PAY ATTENTION! LAY OFF THE SUGAR! So I told them to knock it off. Right away, Jenny (who is a very well-behaved and mild-mannered monkey normally) yells out “Frogs!”, to which I say “Jenny, I asked for less silly-ness please”, and she says “No, no, teacher! Frog toppings!” and before I can say “I told you no more FUCKING TOPPINGS!” she gives me jazz hands and yells “It’s a new taste sensation!”
I was doubled over laughing. Her impression of me was priceless. Because she did it EXACTLY how I would have done it. And now I feel sorry for my teachers. Sorry I was such a wise-ass. I’m sorry. And I’m sorry to Korea for doing this to your children. But not real sorry.
tonicandgin wrote (on 14/11/05):
three things stand out if you scour the internet for ‘new taste sensation’, and here in lies the magic of the google search:
1. http://www.anewtastesensation.com/ – a chocolate fountain, aka the ‘chocolate lady’
2. this is the first hit on the list, i kid you not – Marmite Popcorn!
3. and best of all… what one website calls ‘Canada’s New Taste Sensation’ –
and-errhea wrote (15/11/05):
HOLY CRAPPER!! A New Taste Sensation is hiring? Do you guys think that I should quit my job and go work for the Chocolate Lady? It’s so tempting, and that chocolate fountain thing looks like recycled-saliva goodness!