Monday, 28 June 2010

Waking up at 5:30am covered in sweat

It can only mean that the summer has arrived......yuk!

Oh well, as expected

Shockingly poor defence, the Germans more than deserved to win.  At least I got to chant "The referee's a wanker !" after the Lampard disallowed goal.  What was he thinking, though,  with this comment: "Nobody can stand here and tell me Germany were a lot better than us. They were not 4-1 better than us."  Errr, they were from my sofa! The "lions" were lucky it wasn't 6-1.

Friday, 25 June 2010

I woke up to this after I stumbled out of bed this morning...Go Japan!

What a great result.  The match started at 03:30 and unlike the spectator, I didn't have the chance of getting up at 15:00! 

It is quite tragic that England will play Germany: apart from being outclassed, it allows the sun to trot out the tired old cliches about 'Wurst', 'Herr', 'Hun' etc.  It is so cringe-worthy.  Ho hum. Germany eh?  Guess that'll be England out then.  (Hope I'm wrong though!)

Thursday, 17 June 2010

What you say, what they hear

"Has she gone?"  "keshigomu?"  - eraser!

"In Japan....."  "Panda?"

And one I'll never be able to top:

Risa: How do you say 買う in English?
Rebecca: Buy.
Risa procedes to write I want to by clothes in her notebook.
Rebecca: No! Buy! B. U. Y.
Risa writes be you why in her notebook.

But the dictionary says....

Students often trust a small electronic device with a small electronic voice more so that the living, breathing personification of the English language in front of them (ie me!) One of the strange (and down right dangerous events for a "safety country") is the piggy back fight on Sports Day.  It has the twist that you have to grab the cap of the opposing team member to win.  The dictionary came up with "Cavalier battle" so no one was that interested in the correct "piggy-back" despite me saying "Are you a soldier?"  It didn't help that 'battle' is a Japanese-English word.

Tusks beach

The Japanese name for the Ivory Coast -  コートジボワール - is a katakana version of the French Cote d'Ivoire and would be something like kotojibowaru if romanised.  No wonder I had no idea who Portugal (a slightly more manageable ポルトガル potorugaru) were playing the other night.  Y had no idea what kotojibowaru was in English and after several attempts of trying to make Japanese-French sound English said "Tusks beach". Cue fifteen minutes of me pissing myself laughing at the African country of Tusks Beach.  Found out today that the old name for the Ivory Coast in Japanese would translate as....Tusks Beach!  Guess I owe him an apology. 

Monday, 14 June 2010

Da da da da da da da da da Nippon!!!!!

England 1-1 USA Oh...... and it doesn't look any better reenacted in Lego

Japan 1 -0 Cameroon YEA!!!!!

School moto biscuits!

Gift-giving is very common in Japan.  I'm not quite sure what all the staff had done to deserve biscuits and shudder at the cost when the school is practically falling down round us.  They looked pretty, shame they tasted rank!

The flying futon

Futons should be aired regularly and sunlight helps to kill dani (flea type things) that love futons and tatami. Saturday was boiling so I hung my base futon and left it as I went shopping.  It was pretty windy and I ignored the niggly feeling that it might blow away, as, well, it had never done so before!  Walking down my road, I discovered the futon was no longer there or on the ground, so thought that a futon thief or ninja-speed homeless guy may have nabbed it.  Getting back inside, cue the no lesser horror of seeing it on the roof of someone's garage!  Getting it back was actually very easy but embarrassment caused me to wait until dark: walk through the next apartment and lo and behold the ground is higher, reach up and sprint back inside!

Friday, 4 June 2010

Blown away by my nose-blowing

In my company class last night, Jing, a Chinese girl who studied and now works in Osaka, said that one of her colleagues had asked her to find out whether it was true that British people use the same tissue multiple times instead of blowing and then throwing away the tissue as Japanese do.  As I like her and Tsubasa, and they were the only ones there on time I exaggerated (well, only slightly) how Brits put it up their sleeve and then desperately try to find a usable patch amongst the holes!  Tsubasa, who is the weakest at English in the class, responded "Eco!" They were horrified and amused by my tales of tissues beneath pillows.  Perspective (my new obsession) is always interesting though: I told them how disgusting I find it in summer in Japan when people get out hankie-sized towels and wipe at their sweaty face and back of their neck and then put the towel in their bag only to get it out again and repeat a few minutes later.  They couldn't see why that was gross at all!  I didn't let Jing get away with it though as  I told Tsubasa that in China I'd seen many old men bend over, place a finger on one nostril and blow the offending matter out of the other in a long slimy trail onto the road. 

Amusing English of the day

The first year high school students are making a poster for their mid-term test.  This is actually a third year junior high test, but they were so bad last year that we decided not to give them such a fun test!  The topic is "It makes me happy" and the choices have varied this year between jellyfish (?) Pikachu and comedians amongst the expected swath of pop stars.  Yusuke seems to be a popular choice and I was informed by Mayu that "I like Yusuke. He is a singer and entertainer. His birthday is 17th Spring..."
I was thinking, whilst reading an amusing article on sub-editing, about how, in the aftermath of the oil leak, BP was being referred to as "the British company", but now it would appear that, in American minds at least, Change Obama is now calling it by its ancient name British Petroleum.

What a pathetic attempt by Obama to deflect the criticism he is facing from the American public after being seen to have done nothing for the last 40 days.  They are even saying that Bush had visited the Hurricane Katrina site eight times in the first month and all Obama has done is poke his finger in the sand once - and we all know how Katrina damaged Bush more than his warmongering.

Let's just start referring to Iraq as "America's War in Iraq" and global warming as "American-caused global warming" or Britain obesity problem as "The American fast food consuming obesity crisis."

Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Dumb but friendly or smart but cold?

There once was a little girl called Riho who used to talk to me throughout the lesson (mainly about Prison Break), show me her new pencil case and laugh at all of my cheesy jokes.  She was very good at English and I even managed to piss off her older sister by saying "Riho is much better at English than you were at her age!"  There now is a seventeen year old Riho who is in the upper stream, hangs out with all the popular and smart girls and is, well, rather indifferent to me!  I didn't teach her class at all last year, so was looking forward to getting them back this year.  They are very obedient and do all the work with the minimum of iyaaaaa (FFS! God! Sigh! Tut etc that you'd expect teenagers to utter).  They are a tight unit and recently they have made it clear that there is a wall between me and them that I have no right to try and climb over.  I was quite depressed in today's writing class: they cottoned on straightaway, I got through all that I wanted to and they readily accepted that they should finish for homework, but they didn't ask me one question. There was no banter: there were a few jokes between themselves, but I wasn't invited in. 

Compare this with the third year high school class.  They are supposed to be the top class of the senior year, but half of them don't belong there, some of them are struggling with vocabulary and grammar that they should have mastered in junior high school.  I moved six chatterboxes to the front of the class. I despaired that only 50% handed in their homework (which was already two weeks late!) Half the class struggled with the same material that Riho's class (a year younger) did with ease.  They said that it was impossible to complete their homework by tomorrow - "I know you said write 100 words, but how about 50?" Yuri continued to disrupt her classmates even after I had moved her.  I told them "Kuro-chan (a comedian Yuri is in love with) only likes girls who do their homework and are not annoying!"  She said "I don't think so!" I said "It's true, I spoke to him last night and he told me that he only dates girls who write 100 words."  They said "Rebecca, you are so full of shit!"   I had a bit of a sore throat at the end of the class, but I guess it was kind of fun.