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20 October 2004
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KLB - Hum Glum Hump Day


The day started pretty well. I stopped off at the post office and sent out 4 more copies of my book as well as one to the new Google Print program.

Then it started. I just missed the bus, and had to wait (yea, a whopping 5 minutes) for the next one which caused me to miss the express subway by seconds (usually have this down to a science). So I got the slow one and no seat as usual. I arrived to work 5 minutes late rather than 5 minutes early. No big deal. It takes 10 minutes before all the kids get there anyway.

Class A was just off the wall today. Not nosier than usual, just they wouldn't listen at all. I got kind of angry at Cathy because she just sits there watching them misbehave and doesn't do or say anything, even when I ask her directly. After class I said to her, "Cathy, when the kids are noisy and not paying attention, and when they don't know what's going on, why don't you do anything?" She told me that our boss doesn't want her to speak Korean in the class. I can understand that, sort-of, the parents may complain, but sometimes it's necessary and part of the reason she's there is to keep the kids in line. It's only with class A that I need her assistance. These are the youngest-mostly rotten little boys-and least inclined to learn. So then she said, "I can only speak Korean to translate for you." Well, I had been standing there telling the kids to be quiet and pay attention, trying to explain to them what I wanted them to do, and basically just getting frustrated yet she did nothing except sit there and doodle. I just may force her to fork up the moola for the book I gave her. (everyone calm down - that's a joke!)

When I do ask her to translate, she usually gets all flustered, then finally, if I can get her to understand what I want, she will do so, but very quickly and in a barely audible voice. On a side note, it's amazing how well the kids respond to anything said in Korean. I can understand why they get bored sometimes, usually on Mondays and Wednesdays when I'm required to teach them oddball conversations from English Time. (Today's lesson: "Achoo. Bless you. Thanks.") I can only imagine what it's like for them to sit there and listen to an alien speaking a different language every day for 40-50 minutes. Usually the worst day is on Thursday when I have to teach them their story books. They have to just "listen and repeat" a zillion times, and then I bite my cheek when they still are not able to remember "The man is nice" 5 seconds later. The other days aren't so bad as we do songs, games, and miscellaneous activities that keep their attention somewhat.

Anyway, enough about that. The next two classes were good as usual, especially Class B. Lovely little angels.

When I got home, it was hot and stuffy in our apartment, so I turned on the fan - broken! Then I sat down to check my e-mail. Julie told me the internet is down in our building until tomorrow. I don't like to watch TV much, so I figured I'd work on the cover of my next potential project, only to find that Adobe Photoshop wouldn't work. I uninstalled it and reinstalled it three times, shut down and restarted the computer 5 times, did a system restore, registry cleanup, etc, before I figured out that the problem was: one misplaced file that needed to be deleted. Computers are so fickle! By that time, I was sick of the damn thing and started to watch TV. But I soon got bored with that.

Now I'm sitting here at a PC bang surrounded by a throng of middle school kids playing games at full volume. I sure don't miss having to come to these places often.

I just checked my e-mail and found that Dave Sperling, the owner of the ESL Cafe website, sent me an e-mail with some suggestions on marketing my book, which I appreciated. Some things he mentioned were kind of a bummer. He said he never sold many of his own ESL books off his website, and he gets a zillion hits/day. Basically he said I need to find a publisher so they can market it. Maybe I'll send my book to some publishers in place of a manuscript and hope for the best, or perhaps toss everything in a big fire and laugh insanely as it all burns!

Thank you for reading. Have a nice day.

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