Archive for February, 2011

Getting Finances in Order

February 27, 2011
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A lot going on the weekend before the March 1st Movement holiday (삼일 운동) in my little South Korean town. Time to think and ponder my finances. Usually, I’m working about seven hours a day at ECY Language School in Bugu. On Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, I have extra kindergarten classes for my boss’...
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Posted in South Korea | Comments Off

The Power of Influence

February 21, 2011
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I get a lot of emails from random people across the world. Some just want to connect, probably as a means of living vicariously through me. But the overwhelming majority have read my expose on AEON, one of the major private English-teaching companies in Japan. I was a little surprised at the way some...
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Posted in Random Thoughts | 1 Comment »

Things I Can NEVER Find in Korea

February 16, 2011
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Things I Can NEVER Find in Korea

There’s always going be a few hard-to-get items when you’re in Asia: turkey, your favorite toothpaste, decent marshmallows, cheese. In general, I try to readjust my needs, and learn to live with what’s available. For toiletries, that’s usually no problem at all. For food… I still get cravings. Although I have been able to...
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Posted in South Korea | 3 Comments »

Red, White, and Black

February 14, 2011
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Red, White, and Black

It’s Valentine’s Day. For many American men, that means a guilt trip is coming if they don’t shower their significant others with chocolates and red roses. For some, it’s a mutual exchange, a time to celebrate love and passion. I still don’t see how we started with martyrdom and ended up with “B MINE”...
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Posted in South Korea | 3 Comments »

Curse Korean Efficiency

February 12, 2011
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Curse Korean Efficiency

My corner of Korea has gotten an absurd amount of snow over the past 36 hours: over a meter. Unfortunately, as it was still manageable on Friday, I had to go into work. Few kids showed up with their parents’ cars slowly being buried, but it was still a full day of teaching. That...
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Posted in South Korea | 3 Comments »

My Crazy Students

February 10, 2011
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Port of clarification here: “crazy” in Korea doesn’t quite have the informal meaning it does among English speakers. That is, most of my students are pretty offended when I tell them they’re acting crazy, thinking that I’m calling them mentally deranged rather than simply bizarre. I figured that out after one of my lowest-level...
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Posted in Teaching English | 1 Comment »

Gambling in My Travels

February 8, 2011
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Gambling in My Travels

I will admit it: there’s nothing like the rush of setting a few chips in that betting circle and waiting to see what cards are dealt. Blackjack is my game of choice when I’m playing for cash, but I like to organize Texas Hold ‘Em gatherings whenever I settle in for a year. As...
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Posted in Japan, New Zealand, South Korea | 1 Comment »

Funny Ways to React to Random “HELLO”s

February 7, 2011
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Funny Ways to React to Random “HELLO”s

On a lighter note, I thought I’d throw out a few ideas to expats living in Asia who have gotten used to little kids and grown men shouting “hello!” from a distance, apparently oblivious that almost any tourist or working foreigner would understand the most basic word in the local language. I’ve blogged on...
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Posted in South Korea | Comments Off

Chinese New Year

February 6, 2011
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Fair warning: this blog will be a bit of a rant, as I really didn’t enjoy my five-day holiday. If you value your upbeat attitude and smiley face, I suggest you pass on this entry and wait until the next one. The Lunar New Year is to Korea what the Calendar New Year is...
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Posted in South Korea | 1 Comment »

Hagwons v. Public Schools

February 2, 2011
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Hagwons v. Public Schools

How did I get my current job teaching English? Simple. I decided to live in Korea, searched Seoul Craigslist for a countryside town, applied for one position, got an email back requesting an interview, passed the interview, and started on the paperwork. This all took place within a 10-hour period. I didn’t do as...
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Posted in South Korea, Teaching English | 6 Comments »

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