Thursday, February 22, 2007

2 Random Thoughts

I'm afraid that I might be exposed to English as a Second Language Learners (ESLers) for too long a period for too many days. I'm concerned that when I get back to the states my English language skills may actually have declined. My fear is that I will speak very loudly, slowly, enunciating every word and saying everything multiple times. Friends and family might get sick of me fast. I can also tell that other teachers are suffering from the same ESL overexposure as Kat called the garbage truck the "trash car" today.

I was contaminated with a pretty bad case of food poisoning on Saturday night, of which I am still suffering over. On Sunday I woke up with a terrible headache and my stomach screaming. I thought, "I don't remember drinking that much." I then ran to the bathroom, and well, you know the rest. Later I was lying in my bed thinking about how terrible things were and how I wished my bowels would stop shifting into low gear, when I decided to consider the alternatives: what are the pluses of food poisoning. Here's what I came up with.

--It's great for shedding unwanted pounds. Not eating anything for three days will definitely slim a person up. Plus dry heaves are great for toning and firming abdominal.
--If you want to bring yourself back to a healthy diet, food poisoning is the way to do it. I've been eating apples, bread, soup and vegetables (That's up from just bread). It's not a stimulating group of foods, but it seems to be the only thing I can keep down. I do not believe I will ever each chicken again.
--I've saved money because of my food poisoning. I haven't been spending money on food, let alone beer, or noreebongs, or fireworks, or rides on the mechanical bull, or whatever my money seems to go to.

Looking at it this way, food poisoning may be the best thing that ever happened to me. "Yup, I was in really bad shape before I got food poisoning; eating fatty foods, throwing away my money on women and wine, but it changed me. I'm a changed man now and better for it." And then I make another made dash for the bathroom.

Never mind, just random thoughts.

Monday, February 19, 2007

Blog Set

Korea has a love obsession with the "set". At your favorite fast food restaurant, when you order a meat flavored sandwich, and you want it with fries and a drink, you don't ask for the combo; you ask for the set. Recently, all the major grocery stores, convenience stores and occasional street vendors are selling sets galor. The idea behind the set is you get a menial discount when you buy more than you really need. I noticed Valentine's Day gift sets that would include the standard Valentine's Day fare: chocolate with more chocolate, wine with glasses and an opener; body oils with wine and chocolate (for an extra-messy evening); however, the gift set ideas got more and more obscure. I noted the AA Battery gift set that contained 64 AA Batteries and two samples of Noxema face wash. Energy and clean skin, what a way to say I love you. I then noticed the tuna fish gift set, 12 cans of tuna with two bottles of olive oil. This is not to be outdone by the Spam gift set, which is basically 12 aluminum vials of Spam. (What do you call the spam container by the way?) For the indecisive gift giver, there is the combo tuna/Spam set as well.

I thought that Korea had some rather obscure notions of gift giving on Valentine's Day until I realized that most of the sets were actually gifts for Seol-nal, the lunar new year's, which is this Monday. I still like the idea that it is perfectly acceptable to give a twelve pack of Spam for Valentine's Day.

Avalon Schools did see the Spam set as a perfect way to express their gratitude to their teachers. I appreciate the thought, but I'm afraid that the Spam set will not go to use here. I might eat one can for good measure, but the rest will go to a homeless shelter or to Scott and Allison for their housewarming. It's funny, my sister got an all expense paid vacation to Mexico from her work and I got the Spam gift set from mine. This is where my grandma's voice about starving people in Africa comes to mind to remind me of all my blessings.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Spam Anyone

Spam Anyone
Originally uploaded by karmking1111.
Twelve vials of Spammy goodness.

The New Spam Model

The New Spam Model
Originally uploaded by karmking1111.
Our twelve pack of spam even comes with this handsome carrying case. I believe I'll be selling it on Ebay.


Originally uploaded by karmking1111.
Small Town Seoul.

A Beautiful Smoggy Day

A Beautiful Smoggy Day
Originally uploaded by karmking1111.
A wonderful day for a, cough-cough, hike.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Life is a Game of Easy Come and Easy Go

Last week we said goodbye to both long time teachers, Kerry and Nick. Now I would like to eulogize them in a manner befitting both, through an essay from the point of view of an ESL student.

Kerry and Nick both comes from the Canada.
And both likes to drinks the beer.
Kerry is called the Bear and Nick is called the Nick.
Kerry scream of the Pizza!
And Nick yell at the neighbor.
We has goes to the Norebong.
And sing the songs Cheese up Sleepy Jeans and Living on a Prarie.
Eating things be on niceness great!!!!
But now both are gone.
Sad is we and now the pain comes.

Nick is coming back to Korea in March (but to a different school) and Kerry is livin' it up in Australia. We miss ya kids. Below are some pics to entertain.

The Bat Signal

The Bat Signal
Originally uploaded by karmking1111.
"Quick Robin, to the Bat Bar!" The Bat-Signal is clearly visable on most nights.

Can You Feel the Love Tonight?

Kerry lets out a girlish squeal as Nick treats her to a special session of face stuble. (Or is it the other way around.)

"I'm Going to Keep This One!"

Kerry's found a waygook.


Originally uploaded by karmking1111.
The Korean Hut looks down on us menacingly.

Look, I Found the Stone Preceptor

The Stone Preceptor must be dangerous. They built a fence around it to keep it in and then a roof to keep it dry.

Kat's Panorama

Kat's Panorama
Originally uploaded by karmking1111.
Kat stands in the foreground as a tombstone in the back gets ready to pounce.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Odelay Essay

We've recently received a fresh wave of essays at the old Avalon English mine. Grading essays gets very tedious and mind numbing, so it's nice when a kid writes an essay with some actual thought put into it or makes humorous mistakes. Neither has happened for awhile until today. Let me share with you:

Topic: What is your favorite food and why?
I likes oranges because it is sweet and I like the color. I also like ice cream but I cannot eat manies. I also like to eat crap. Crap is good but I cannot eat it often because it is expensive. I like many foods.

I'm pretty sure that this student meant to write crab rather than crap. The student who wrote this is studious, well mannered and relatively clean so I'm assuming that the reference to eating fecal matter is a mistake. Plus I have not noticed any expensive poop in Korea.

Topic: Summarize the unit on cosmetic surgery.
Maria Concepcion received cosmetic surgery and she had four children. She was also married. I cannot understand this. Why would she get plastic surgery if she was married? My mother does not care if she is ugly or not, although she was very pretty in university.

I believe I'll share this one on parent night.

(This one was stolen from one of Ken's students.)
Topic: Summarize the unit on Internet Cafes.
(The student was writting about Korea's Internet Cafes, a.k.a. PC Bangs)
People who loves games play for 6 hours at least. That's too much time. And they may have sickness or illness and then the pain will come.

This kid is like a prophet. I love that last line, "and then the pain will come." I think I'll steal it for the opening line of my screenplay. We need to get this kid to write more.

A part of me feels guilty for stealing excerpts from these kids' papers and waving them around so we can laugh at them; however, I feel that if we can laugh at our own mistakes we are blessed. If we can laugh at other peoples mistakes, so we don't have to make our own, we are divine.