Sunday, November 18, 2007

STUV engrish. charades. weekend.

STUV engrish:
What words start with S?
socket (WUUUUUUT???)

What words start with T?
tell me, tell me, t-t-t-t-tell me
what's something you can eat that starts with T?
(correct answer: tomato)

What words start with U?
universe (impressive...)
유도 (judo)

What words start with V?Volume (impressive)
바가지 (no)
very good

What do you put IN a vase?
김치!!! (kimchi)
american culturally correct answer: flowers

sometimes i am a glorified IT assistant. in thursday's "open class" i said "what's this" 4x total and "bye" at the end of class. i was also instructed to give the directions to a puzzle game that the students had previously learned.

i dont understnad why so much of korean culture revolves around charades, ceremony, and false gestures. it sometimes feels so fake i could puke. but the PEOPLE i work with aren't fake. if anything i think they're genuninely nice. me, on the other hand, i'm pretty fake i think. i can trash talk with the best of them and then smile to your face. sometimes. nevermind, im actually pretty transparent. and a horrible liar. but anyway, you know what i mean. the people arent fake but here are all these hoops we jump through and i dont know why. maybe it helps the society work better? i dont know. but it annoys me so much. like it's so OBVIOUS the class has practiced and practied and pre-learned today's lesson mateiral. in america our "open classes" were never like this (at least where i grew up in my public schools). the teacher would say the principal or VP was coming in for a few minutes. and they would come in and sit in the back and take notes. we would behave mildly better than usual and that was that. none of this rehearsing for 2 weeks in advance. packing the lesson full of "fun" activities we normally don't do all at once. its just so FAKE. orchestrated. i feel like so much of korean life is scripted and orhestrated. yes thats the exact word i was thinking of. orchestrated.

i'm a horrible cultural ambassador. what kind of ETA am i? i mean what would it prove if i pointed this out and said i was unhappy and said it was a cRAPPY open class cuz it doesnt show what real class is like at all? like who would that help? would i feel better for outing my superbly caring and warm coteachers and making them painfully aware that yes they normally defer to me in the classroom bc they suck at english? no. but still this irks me so much. i mean they're here for the rest of their careers/lives so they need the good feedback. im outta here in a few more months so i should jus bite the bullet and let them use me as a prize show pony. right? but it still totally rubs the wrong way against something inside of me. something like pride? i dont know. but ugh. it disgusts me. and yet i have to keep reminding myself that THIS is the noble road. THIS is the one of quiet deference and following what is BETTER for everyone in this situation rather than what i think is RIGHT. i guess this is growing up.

thursday: open class followed by 회식 with 1st grade teachers at 마중 (yummy hanshik restaurant i ate at over the summer-mommy we went here with 임신부님). yummy 산사춘 w/teachers = fun.

friday: wake up late go to school to meet teachers to go on faculty/staff/employee hiking trip. after hiking eat duck and kimchi. must give formal 검배 in the namsung traditional style. beer with principal = entertaining. then nails and cake/tea with maia =) much needed

saturday: wake up. meet maia at bus terminal to go to seoul for thanksgiving lunch at us ambassador's house. the house is gorgeous. i think that is what my dad is doing to our house right now. .... haha so glad i'm missing most of the construction. insadong, 이대, and kangnam/apgu with the girls for joan unni's early bday. ice cream with other ETAs. last bus to cheongju (gahhhh almost missed it!~ thanks to maia's antics for making the bus driver wait while i RAN like the wind)

sunday: sooo relaxing. mostly. woke up to hostbrother screaming on the other side of the door "BANG THE PIANO!!! BANG THE PIANO!!!" (there is a piano IN my room - and more on me and hostbro's relationship later) .... get out of bed and chase him around the house yelling "DENNIS I'M GONNA KILL YOU!!!" ... then eat spagetti for lunch and head out to visit subway unni. chill with her for 5+ hours. come home and 딩굴딩굴 until bedtime. =)
it was a good weekend.

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