Kong ki, mimes and madness.

I stayed late at work today to clean my classroom. The curriculum changes here quite often, so the last guy left every shelf, drawer and cabinet in disarray with books, CDs and cassettes. I realized one of the main reasons I'm constantly running around like a decapitated chicken just before work is because I can never find anything. SO, I spent a good hour rearranging desks, drawers and such and now it's immaculate. The best thing to aspire from this custodial madness was that I found this little box of what look like miniature 10 sided dice, sans numbers. I took the box next door to a Korean teacher who shall remain nameless, but is super cool, and she showed me how to play this game called Kong ki. It's kind of like jacks without the ball. You throw one of the little dice into the air and use it's hang-time to pick up increasing numbers of the balls, then catch the one you threw. It's awesome, addictive, and after playing for a good hour or so, I'm learning korean numbers much faster. Good times, anyhoo, off to lala land, going to the beach early to do some Suzuki work and run.




Oh and I won't be plugging much stuff with this blog, BUT a friend of mine in a band called The Miclordz and Sauce Funky is in a battle of the bands for 10k and recording time. Like any indie band, they can definitely use the money and the EP, so if you've got 5 seconds, Click on the OH YEAH!! and go vote for them. Remember: Miclordz and Sauce Funky-All My People. You can vote once a day, and yesterday they were winning and are a few hundred votes down now. So do it!!!

And for my next trick....

Sometimes I feel like being an English teacher straddles a fairly fine line between cheap birthday clown/magician/pony ride, a stand-up comedian and an honest attempt at education. Point of fact, this evening I taught my first Yeong Je class (pronounced Young Jay, don't know if I've spelled it right.) All these fourteen-year-olds skulked into my classroom, usually occupied with an effervescent crew of 7-12 year olds. Because I haven't actually been told what to teach these "kids", I had prepared a couple of stories pulled from newspapers, as well as the usual introductory song and dance about where I'm from, classroom rules, etc. After reading one of the stories to them once, the vacant stares, half-asleep glazed over eyes, and restless fidgeting were a bit too much for me, and I felt like trying to have some fun. So I pulled out this sheet I got from another teacher, full of get-to-know-you questions like "what do you do when you get up in the morning?" and the like. We went through the questions together, and while they weren't exactly bursting with a need to share, I did get a few of them talking. It also helped (and this is the stand up comedian part) when I would suggest answers to the questions such as "The first thing I do when I get up in the morning is: eat kimchi? wash my face? brush my teeth? kick my mom? (sorry mom, for comic effect only) In the end, they left a little intrigued, a little wary and more than relieved to go home. It's important to remember that these kids have been at school from like 7am and most of them don't get home from classes until after 10 at night. I told my partner teacher that if they ever told a western kid he'd be in school that long, there'd be riots.

In other news, I had a little housewarming get together at my place on saturday. A modest gathering, thankfully, because my place isn't that big. But Ms. Shin, my partner teacher, showed up with her daughter Eun-ji (pronounced like a cross between Oon-jee and Un-jee). She's 17, and we talked about what she wants to do when she's out of high school (go to university in Seoul for business to be a CEO) and she inquired about how much partying high school kids in the west do. I tried to play it down, but she was visibly envious. Poor kids, they just wanna get their mojo going, but competition is FIERCE here for higher education, so schedules are strenuous.

I'm going to Chuncheon this weekend for a Mime festival, which sounds cool. Going to make it a spartan weekend, and try to lay off the sauce because finances aren't spectacular, although booze is so cheap, I'm focussing more on figuring out cheeeep accomodations which shouldn't be a problem. For my parents and relatives reading this, when I say finances aren't spectacular, I'M ALRIGHT!! I just got an advance from Mrs. Kim on next month's pay check, I just gotta make it last. Pretty stoked to see what kind of mime is miming at the mime-time. Anyhoo. Bye for now.

Early Morning Nostalgia.

Woke up at 6:30 after a pretty sleepless night. Had weird dreams, read a lot of Tom Robbins' "Fierce Invalids Home From Hot Climates" last night. He's quickly become my favourite author. Looking through new facebook pictures of University times this morning on a friend's profile. It strikes me how physical memory can be. Looking at those pictures, the singularity of that time, the act of remembering is pretty holisitic. The memories are less a sum of sight, sound, smell, and thought/emotion than an amalgamation of all these things, combined with a feeling of time having passed. It's like there's a certain geographical location in my head for those times, as if I could visit them again. Heh. It's funny to be in the middle of such wild transition from one culture and one routine and life, really, to another and be thinking about such far away times as then.

Tom Robbins fills me with sooo much fuel.

Off to go jog with the Korean-American phenomenon I live next to. Then, the day!