Saturday, April 30, 2005

Coil seems like I 'talk' too much football. Thanks for the tip off YOU!

Actually, since no-one out here has much passion for the beautiful game, this is the only place I can let off steam about it. After all, if I start talking to myself about football whilst walking along the road, then I'm going to get even more stares than I already get for being non-Korean. And let me tell you, I could go on for days about football, so a post a week about football isn't that much given the wealth of knowledge one possesses!!

Both the English and Scottish League Championships could be all but wrapped up this week with Chelsea needing to win at Bolton whilst Celtic could go 8 points clear with a win over Hibs. Rangers can cut the difference by beating the Dons in Aberdeen. If they don't, then another win for Celtic could see us being crowned Champions. Again.

Enough football. How about Chemistry?

At an elemental level, electrons randomally orbit the neutrons and protons at the centre of an atom. These electrons orbit in definte paths but at such a speed that it is impossible pinpoint it's location at any given moment. It's remarkable that these electrons do not actually hit each other whilst orbiting. The other thing that I found remarkable is that the similiarities between the very foundation of life and the solar system in that the Earth, Mars et al are in 'random' orbits around the Sun. Is it possible that our solar system is actually just an atom in some infinetly large 'substance' and that the Big Bang was some entity just making a new substance which saw the 'electrons' being rearranged resulting in what we 'see' in space right now. Is it feasible that this could happen again at some point?


Friday, April 29, 2005



It's only april but the weather is gloriously sunny /well, with a slight hazy tinge/ and warm. Apparantly thursday hit 27 Degrees with friday alittle cooler but warm enough for the air-con to be gently blowing. Pathetic, I know but consider that Scotlands 'baking hot' days generally never top 25 Degrees, it's a big difference.

Anyway, enough weather. Let's get to the issues.

The annual Darwin Awards see an 'Award' given to the stupidest people on the planet. Unfortunatly, the winners aren't alive to claim them because their dead. It's an award for the most unlikely way to take your genetic make-up out of circulation. Apparantly, last years winner was alive and well, however the fuse for his headlights had blown in his van, so to fix the probelm he got a bullet which strangely was the exact size needed to repair the probelm. But, as he was driving, the bullet heated up and was 'shot' out of the engine. The bullet 'shot' the guy going straight through his testicles, thus meaning he could no longer father children much to the disapprovable of his wife.

It seems like this years 'award' goes to some bloke who was trying to help his constipated Elephant by feeding it laxatives and other such delights. Suddenly, the Elephant was no longer constipated and proceeded to let it flow like a mudslide. The bloke was caught unaware and the force of the 'mudslide' knocked the bloke to the ground where he whacked his head on a stone rendering himself unconscious. The Elephant then proceeded to empty his bowels onto the bloke, covering him completely. The bloke then suffocated under the weight of the discharge.

You certainly wouldn't want that written on your tombstone. I haven't given much thought as to the way I will be leaving however, I certainly am going to be watching out for Elephants, especially here in Cheonan. Those pesky Elephants - they get everywhere.

Thursday, April 28, 2005

Wednesday, April 27, 2005


So...the Attorney General, in a leaked memo to our 'dear leader' Tony, questioned the legality of the Iraq War. Well, Mr. Blair, get out of that one, you kn _________head. The Attorney General indicated that without a second U.N. Resolution, it would be illegal to go down the path of war.

I wonder, now that the War has been deemed, at least in part, illegal if I could actually take our 'dear leader' to Court over it. Clearly, if you do something illegal and get caught, there is a really good chance that you would get arrested, questioned and then charged with some offence because of it's illegal nature. If I was to steal a twix and was caught, I would get nailed. If I was to stab a man in a pre-meditated, cold blooded manner with 100 witnesses, I would get nailed also /that's not to say that I will, just an example!/ because it is clearly an illegal act.

Therefore, could I contact the Police and get him arrested citing the fact that he invaded another country. I mean, if I stole a twix, I would get arrested even although it only costs 50p /?/ but invading a country thats a million times worse given that 1. It was premediated, 2. He couldn't have done it alone, therefore a charge of conspiring could be applied, 3. There are about a billion witnesses, 4. He told a little pork pie to cover his tracks, so his alibi isn't that strong. Yes, he could argue he wasn't even in the country but thats a minor point, 5. A few people died, so we could throw in a charge of manslaughter, 6. He might well have been in breach of the Geneva Convention since Iraqi prisoners of war weren't treated that well. He personally didn't do it but then it's a case of complicity, isn't that right, Mr. Rumsfeld...and the small case of being 7. a bit of a pratt. Now, in a Court of law, charges probably couldn't be brought because of this but we could try.

Certainly, people who invade countries don't always get off lightly. Hilter tried to but did the 'S' deed. Napoleon tried but was banished to St. Helena in the middle of nowhere. Ivan the Terrible tried and he got called 'Terrible' for his troubles. My god, even Saddam tried it and now look at him. It seems that only Americans and Brits are allowed to invade countries without fear of getting nailed. How many American Presidents have invaded countries? Quite a lot.

"English Department Assistant...get me my Lawyer"...

Tuesday, April 26, 2005


_Adios.goodbye.see you later. The Scottish rugby coach and his team have been fired. A wise decsion, for once, by the S.RU. I think they had to. 3 wins in 17. Conflict between senior players and the management and rapidly falling attendences at Murrayfield meant that action had to be taken. Williams had stated when he first started that he felt that it could take Scotland a year to win a test. Hardly the words that a team and a nation wants to hear from their new coach and words that did not provide a positive, winning mentality. If he felt we were so poor then why did he accept the position.______ Furthermore, his 'Fortress Scotland idea looked good on paper but the top players don't necessarily want to play their club rubgy in Scotland, as he was suggesting. And you can't blame the players for wanting to pit their skills in the likes of the English and French leagues against better opposition and of course, for better money than they would have received in Scotland.

The chinks in the armour appeared early on and really, since last autumns matches, it's been a evident that his position was becoming untenable. As so it has proved.

The future? - Thats for the S.R.U. to decide. Perhaps, it would be wise to look at other nations as see how they do it. Wlaes for example, or /i hate to say it/ England. After all they are the World Champions and must have done something right to get to that point. 2 matches to go this season. Let's hope for some positive performances and even a couple of wins.

Monday, April 25, 2005


Think I saw a dead guy. Not just on the t.v. but actually in real life. Here in Cheonan...I was coming home after Class when I was on the road from the Interchange to Downtown. The road is quite wide with 3 lanes on each side with a grassy central reservation. The traffic was quite heavy, so we weren't travelling very fast. The traffic on the other side wasn't that heavy was was flowing as normal. I looked over a saw a couple of buses slowing down but as they moved off again, I saw a moped lying on the road, next to the 'curb'. Behind the moped was a guy lying on the road. Limp and on his back. His nose/mouth area was all red. On the curb was a couple of men, both of whom were taking on their phones. Certainly not in any heightened state of stress or anything. I watched this for around 10 or 20 seconds and still the guy on the road didn't move. Cars continued to pass whilst the 2 man continued talking on their phones.__andthat was all I saw. I was gone.

Of course, such fleeting moments are easy to misinterprete, so forgive me for being melodramatic. However, the guy lying on the road didn't move at all. Had he been injured, then surely he would have moved, even alittle. Also, if he was merely injured, then the 2 guys talking on their phones would surely have been helping him in some way. Comforting him or at least ensuring that his injuries were not getting worse. But, no. No movement and little action from the 2 men. Perhaps, they knew it was too late for him and their inertia was because it was too late. I guess it's like coming across many injured people. Doctor's and nurses always attend to people who are showing signs of life 1st. Perhaps this is what happened.

Either, way, it wasn't exacting the sight I was expecting to see on my way home. Perhaps it was my 1st 'actual' dead body sighting. Not pleasant.

Sunday, April 24, 2005


Word of the week: 'John Prescott'

O.K. it's 2 words but it could be shortened to 'prat'. He visited the local Supermarket in Edinburgh the other day to meet the public in advance of the General Election next month. He really has no idea about Scotland, let alone the issues in my neighbourhood. When questioned about the Scotish First Minister, he admitted he couldn't even remember his name. They are in the same Party! Also, he is quoted as mentioning the fact that Edinburgh is run by a Liberal Council and that in Hull, where he is from, the Liberal Council had raised Council Tax and reduced serious etc. It was then pointed out that Ediburgh is run by a Labour Council. Again,
his Party! __A tip for you mate-if ur going to comment on something, make sure you know what your talking about. Now, off you pop back to London in your Jaguar.

Phrase of the week: 'My family members father, mother ...'

I'm not sure of the origin of this sentence but a lot of students, when talking about their family use this. I certainly haven't taught this but it seems like too many students use it, for it to be a simple 'mistake'. Could it be the mythical 'Konglish'? The hybrid language that I hear and have been known to /inadvertentally/ use. It would surprise me if this particular sentence is in some standard School textbook, hence it's regularity. And to be honest, it's got to the point were I can't be bothered to even correct it.

Sight of the week: 'Pepperami'

Admittedly, this hasn't actually happened yet but by all accounts will today. Pepperami is, as the name suggests, a bit of meat stuck in a foil wrapping. Personally, it's not all that nice to munch on but each to their own. Anyway, the foil wrapping is green and always has been. It seems like Rangers (the blue half of Glasgow) has decided to stop stocking it at Ibrox, not on the grounds that it's crap but on the grounds that it is wrapped in green foil which, it just so happens, is the colour that Celtic play in. So, since the 2 meet today at Ibrox, Celtic fans have been urged to bring Pepperami to the match to wave at the Rangers fans in protest! __could be interesting seeing 7,000 Pepperami's being waved in unison. I wonder what the Rangers will be waving in response - perhaps they will merely be waving away to the Championship - Gordon, over to u!

Song of the week: 'Club Foot' by Kasabian

Named after Charles Mansons getaway driver...not that that should put anyone off. A band and a song that sound remarkably like Primal Scream. By no means a bad thing. A bruising bassline which will wake the neighbours and their pissy rat/dog up.

Saturday, April 23, 2005


^was hoping for a nice, relaxing day at Korea's 'Disneyland'. Everything seemed fine as we left Cheonan...thesun was out, blue sky and little sign of what would be ahead. That was at 10.30am. Usually, it would take about and hour or hour and a half to get there.4 hours later, we finally get there...into the park itself.not overly impressed. traffic. millions of it. it appeared that almost everyone else had the same idea of going to Everland. jAMMED PACKED.

I do like Everland... it's quite compact with the usual array of rides and attractions but it's not as good as other I have been to. There is no big, redeeming feature. The attractions are all pretty standard along with the 2 hour waiting times to get onto everything. It also has a zoo of sorts. I have to say, I was quite saddened to see massive Polar bears, tigers, kangaroos et al in small, cramped, faceless pens. It's like going back in time to the day's in which the animals where there purely the attraction with little thought or care paid to the animals happiness or wellbeing. It did appear that some of the animals were displaying signs of complete boredom with them constantly walking in circles or just lying motionless. So didn't even look that healthy. But, that's what the crowds want with many 'oohs' and 'aahs' from the locals and many photos being taken. Hopefully, something will be done about that however, I suspect it won't.

Best bit...the flower gardens. Generally, Korea isn't that colourful due to the fact that most people live in apartment blocks with no gardens, so it was great to see such a splash of colour. The red, yellow and oranges of the tulips was refreshing. The people picking and walking on them wasn't. All in the name of getting a picture.

oh yeah..andmore traffic jams on the way home.

Friday, April 22, 2005


further confusionrains.a student that I gave 18 out of 20 points wants to retake my test. He calls me up to complain about his score and explains that he wants to take it again...ehm, no. you can't.

Actually, his score was the second highest in his class. So that's 1 reason that I'm not going to allow him to retake it. What would happen if he scored less when he retook it. He would be well upset. And the 2nd reason is, well, he's already seen the test and knows exactly what's in it and to be honest, i'm not going to compose a new test just for one student who is miffed with scoring highly. My advice to him is, take the score you have because there are many students who would quite happy swap positions with him.

anyway,1week of testing down.1to go_

Thursday, April 21, 2005


Sometimes...just sometimes this country confuses me. Really confuses me.

In my building there are 2 lifts which, being the lazy man I am, I use them everyday. After all, i'm on the 13th floor! .....................anyway, it seems like both lifts are out of order for the next 2 days. That put me in a bad mood when I left the house today. I got to the 1st floor to find that both lifts were there, both open and sitting idle. I'm not really sure what work is being done to them. Perhaps, they are putting in a new floor. The strange thing was that 2 men were working on 1 of the lifts. The other had no sign of any form of work going on in it. Probably because the 2 men were working on the other lift.

The thing that struck me was...why have they closed off both lifts for 2 days when they only have 2 men on site to fix whatever is up with them. Wouldn't it have been better and more efficient to have closed 1 lift for 1 day and completely 'fix' it whilst allowing the other lift to work as normal. It's not as if they work in tandem with one lift being dependent on the other. Then close the other lift the following day whilst allowing us the use of the 'fixed' lift. Now, call me crazy but isn't that better for everyone concerned instead of having both out for 2 days.

-but, that is a very Korean way of doing things. It seems like the 'logical' idea gets bypassed in favour of some alternative which doesn't really help anyone. what do I know. I'm only Scottish.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005


It's the little things. Just the little things that make all the difference. A smile instead of a frown. The dilation of the pupil upon recognition. The red light that tells you to stay still instead of walk. A touch that tells you everything will be fine. An extra minute of injury time. Rain instead of prolonged drought. Good and great. Electrons and protons.

It's pathetic to think that a little, metallic, silver coloured rectangle 8cm by 4 cm could make a difference but it does. Usually, in a good way in that it enables one to communicate. However, without this little thing, it almost seems like the world is a million miles away. Cut off from reality. And thats what happened today. My battery died on my phone as soon as I switched it on. I had a whole day without it. At 1st, it's a feeling of panic, like you have left the house with no underwear or something but then, the panic gives way to a feeling that, actually, it's only a little, metallic, silver coloured rectangle 8cm by 4cm and that it's really not that important at all. I wonder if I can go all of thursday without it.

Tuesday, April 19, 2005


The weather is nice and too be honest, I want to cancel all the testing and head out into the hazy sunshine and get horrifically sunburnt as I seem to do every year but then thats Scottish skin for you. The Cherry Blossom is out as is the yellow of the Forsythia. Spring is certainly here. The best season of the year. So much to look forward to. So much hope for the forthcoming year yet by the time autumn comes around, you are left wondering what exactly there was to look forward to and question the hope you had knowing that a long, cold winter is beckoning.

====+had the 1st casualty of the testing season. A student who is actually really good, however he always comes late to class. Not just a minute or 2 but 50 minutes or more. Today, he didn't even bother to attend his test. Of course, he may have been sick or he may even have died, however, that should not be an excuse to miss your test. He's already on shaky foundations given his awful attendence. If he had perfect attendence, then maybe but ... he will have a difficult time trying to convince me to test him at some other point in time.

Was checking out the news on the B.B.C website when I came across these series of pictures. I was was thinking 'that looks familiar' ... and it is. It's those mingin' flats in Oxgangs, near my old Primary School which were demolished last weekend. Thank god. They were crap. On the 5th picture - right in the middle of the picture, just above the smoke, is my old Primary School! /sarah, are you reading this!/ Actually, you get a better view of the School in the 6th picture! Aplogies for getting excited but not much happens in my neck of the woods. The odd stabbing ...

Monday, April 18, 2005


One of the questions in todays Mid-Term was 'Have you ever had an Operation?' Not all students actually selected this question given that they have a random choice of questions. One student picked this question and had to give me their answer. He said 'Yes, I have' which meant that I had to ask a subsequent, follow up question which I proceeded to do 'Oh, when did you have an Operation'. He said 'When I was 15 years old'. I thought that that would be the end of that particular exchange and I was getting ready for the next question when he continued 'How can I say ...' whilst pointing at his crotch. I somehow knew exactly what he was going to say but thankfully, I managed to prevent him from actually saying more. I can put 2+2 together without him actually saying anything...

Seems like this poor guy had had the old 'snip' at the age of 15. Just the thought of that is enough to bring tears to the eyes. I mean, if you are just born and it gets done, then ok. It's probably no major thing, given that you only really care about eating, drinking, sh____________ing and sleeping. But at 15 years old. This poor guy is bit phyiscally and mentally scared for life. He's not going to forget that in a hurry. Plus, at that age. It's shocking. How does he explain to his mates when he can't walk or can't play football down the park for a 'few weeks'. I would guess that even the slightest movement would be probelmatic. And what if he got s stiffie. I would say that babies don't have that particular issue ...but 15 year old boys. There he is, sitting on the bus, when all of a sudden whooooosh there it is. Pain.

Some parents have alot to answer for.

Sunday, April 17, 2005


Word of the week: 'Champions'

How many of the remaining Champions League semi-finalists are actually 'Champions' of there respective leagues? Money/greedandtv rights rule.

Phrase of the week: 'next week...test'

The immortal phrase that causes /almost/ grown adults squeal in disgust. Sorry, but I have to give you 2 tests per semester. Time to get my own back on them...

Sight of the week: 'Dokto'

I mentioned a few weeks back that some 'nationalist' Korean man had set himself alight in protest over Japans claim to Dokto - a small rocky outcrop - that Korea maintains belongs to them. Whatever, I'm not going to get involved in the right or worngs of such a claim but the guy who set himself alight had been in a critical condition since his moment of madness. He, unfortunatly dies yesterday as a result of his injuries. It was reported that his family will keep up the struggle against the Japanese by marching on the Japanese Embassy with his coffin. I don't get it. Give the guy a dignified burial, one fitting the fact that he died for his beliefs. Don't be matching him down central Seoul for the whole world to see. Crazy.

Song of the week: 'Dalston' by Razorlight

A place or another man? Either way, come back.

Saturday, April 16, 2005



The cheek of it. I mentioned earlier in the week about the Inter Milan fans who caused the abandonment of a Champions League game by throwing missiles etc. Well, UEFA have decided that Inter must play for games behind closed doors and have fined them some stupid amount. Less than Veron makes in a day. That's the 2nd time. They played 'home' games at other stadiums a few years ago for the exact same offence.

Tell you what...if that had been a Scottish team or some other 'small' nation, UEFA would have not only thrown the book at the team in question, but they would have thrown the whole damn library as well. Typical. One set of rules for one and another set of rules for another. And why? Money and tv rights. If they ban Inter or even all the other Italian teams, how much money would UEFA lose. If they banned Scottish teams, so what.

Strangely, FIFA has been very quiet on the Scotland vs. Italy game in which there was rioting between Italian fans. I wonder why that was?

Could it be considered sour grapes if I mention the infamous 'one team in Talinn' debacle in which the Estonians failed to turn up for their own home game against us. Surely, they should have been fined and the win awarded to Scotland. FIFA, in all it's wisdom decided, NO that would be too easy. We'll reply the Monaco. Strange that the guy who made the decsion was Swedish. Who else was in the qualifying group? Sweden.

Selective rules. Thats all it is. Uniformity is all we want. And consistancy.

Friday, April 15, 2005


Test complete. An 8 hour marathon to get all my cards, prompts and grading materials together. The thing is, I think it's complete but I guess i'll find out next week if it is actually any good. Fair or solid. Easy or difficult.

Read today that Rover (or MG) or whatever has gone bust. The last British car-maker. The Government has been trying to bail it out but it seems that the end is nigh. I don't care that much about the car industry however, I'm more concerned about the 6,000 jobs that are about to be lost and the estimated 18,000 jobs that could potentially be lost indirectly. I read that these 6,000 people will get a£267 pay-out for each year they have worked with the company whilst the Directors get to keep the £40 million they have earned since 2000. Something seems alittle off there. I mean, it's probably the 6,000 people who have been working their backsides off for the good of the company. I doubt their salaries are that high. The Directors on the other hand...their management skills are so great that the company has gone bust. But don't worry...the pension, the holiday homes, the company cars (haha), the kids Private School tuition fees are all safe.

Strange world.

Thursday, April 14, 2005


-Night students do my nut-constantly moody, tired and lacking in the slightest hint of urgency or desire to do anything. I asked them at the start of the semester if they wanted to change the time of the class as I felt that starting class at 8.30 was way past my bedtime. Alas, they said no and actually said that starting at 8.40 would be better. so why are they complaining about wanting to go home, as they were today. One student had all his friends waiting outside for him as if that would sway me into letting him go home. He moodily sat back down. Also, other students were suggesting that other teachers let their classes go home early. To be honest, their class already is the shortest of the whole week but at the end of the day, we have things to do and mid-term tests to organise and no amount of Korean style moaning and groaning is going to deflect me. If it continues, then their grades will suffer. Simple.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005


Bill Shankly said that 'Football is not a matter of life and death. It's more important than that'. It seems that these words have been taken alittle too literally recently by certain 'supporters'.

The Italians. Passionate, cool, well dressed but take them to a football stadium and they turn into crazed hooligans. It's quite a transformation. A couple of weeks ago, Scotland played in Milan. It was reported that sets of Italian fans were actually fighting amoungst themselves during the match -isn't it meant to be against a rival set of supoorters?-And then there was the shocking events of the Milan derby... A.C. cruising through to the next round of the Champions League. Inter getting a goal disallowed. Cue missiles and flares. One of which hit the A.C. goalkeeper. The referee took the players off early. The match was then abandoned because of it. Earlier in the season Roma played a couple of games behind closed doors because on of their fans threw a lighter at a referee causing him to need stitches. Volatile springs to mind.

Scotland is largely free of such fighting however the menance of sectarianism is as evident as ever. Generally, it is the realm of Celtic and Rangers. However, during a recent 1 minute silence in memory of the Pope, a section of Hearts fans booed it down resulting in the minute being cut very short. This, infront of a nationwide tv. audience. Not clever. Perhaps the S.F.A. should be criticised for requesting the silence given that religion and football should not be mixed but then are we Scots not big enough to be quiet for a minute regardless of the reason. If you don't agree with it, then fine but booing is not the way to make your feeling known. It's childish. Certainly, it has tarnished the name of the majority of Hearts fans.

However, such sectarianism is a product of the times we live in. It seems that football gives these people the 'acceptable' platform from which to vent their feelings. It's sad. And really, what does a persons religion have to do with footballing matters. Or, as a society as whole, what does religion have to do with anything. Does it make the person next to you a 'bad' person because he doesn't believe or attends the Church of Scotland. Does it b__..._______ks. He or she is the same as you. With the same struggles. The same hopes and fears. The sooner people realise this the better. I read in a book recently...when you are born, you need peope around you. When you are elderly, you need people around. But, heres the secret. You need people around you inbetween times as well. Whats the point in denouncing people because they aren't the 'same' as you.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005


usually...Cheonan is big enough.

It's big enough to have everything you need without travelling a vast distance to get to wherever you need to get to. Plus, it's big enough that if you don't want to 'bump' into certain individuals, you don't have and if you do it is generally a bit of a fluke. Take, for example my Boss. I see him at University and I rarely see him out of University which is fine. Also, ex-girlfriends or people you don't especially like. It's easy to not see them. However, ex-girlfriends mothers are a different matter. I was sitting in restaurant today, juast chatting and eating - as you do - when I hear a 'Pol' ... I look up to see my old girlfriends mother at the next table. She's a nice lady, no question about it but it's moments like this that you wish that the floor would open up and you could quietly slip away into another dimension.

In normal circumstances, you would have some degree of small talk...but clearly, my Korean isn't quite ready for 'small' talk and her English hasn't quite passed the 'hello' stage. 'Awkward' would be the best way to describe the situation...We just end up smiling at each other for an uncomfortably long time before the waiter interrupts. I could have secretly kissed him at that moment!______and then my old girlfriend then, by complete coincidence calls her mother on the phone. The phone then gets passed to me blahblahblah. time for a sharp exit.

Monday, April 11, 2005


It appears that we are to have a General Election on May 5th. Thankfully, I won't be there to witness the Party Political Broadcasts and the media manipulation employed by the major Parties.

I suspect that this Election will be much closer than the previous 2. I still think that old Tony will get back in but with a much reduced majority. That is probably a consequences of the fact that there really isn't a credable alternative at present. Michael Howard. I think not. Charles Kennedy. Perhaps but the Lib's are unlikely to gain power. It has been suggested that they would be pleased with becoming the largest opposition party.

Also, I wonder how much protest voting will go on. Certainly, Tony made a major cock-up by joining the U.S. in Iraq against the wishes of the general public. That and the complete whitewashes that were the 'Official Inquiries' into both the Intelligence reports prior to the War itself and of course the 'alleged' Sexing up of these reports. Both, in my mind were reason enough for Tony to have been kicked out. However, he is still there, fighting his corner. If he does prevail on May 5th...then it would exactly be a disaster. Not ideal but when have 'ideals' and 'politics' ever worked in tandem?

ohyeAH...And a late 'HAPPY BIRTHDAY' to my old is that now?!? ___losing count!

Sunday, April 10, 2005

40 ft

Word of the week: 'Test'

Because I need to make them. Not easy. Getting there.

Phrase of the week: 'I download adult movies'

That's not an admission but a phrase uttered by one of my Intermediate Level students in class. We had been talking about the Internet and what benefits it brings ... he then blirts this out. I didn't know where to put my eyes. Instead, we swiftly moved on.

Sight of the week: 'Pain'

Not really a sight as such, more of a really dull, constant thud which lasted almost all of today. That's what I get for drinking. At my age, I should know better. It's not big and it's not clever. Neither is having no real recollection of getting home.

Song of the week: 'Jacqueline' by Franz Ferdinand

A right rollicking little song that sets the tone for a mighty debut record. And for the 'it's always better on holiday'. It is and it's where I want to be...

Saturday, April 09, 2005


busybusybusy____itsthattime oftheyearagain.

Test time. not quite but in 2 weeks time. 2 weeks seems like a long way off and i guess it is but when you need to be telling all your classes about the test next week, it makes you alittle nervous. Idon't really have a big probelm actually making the tests up because it's 'just' a case of selecting parts of spoken excerises that we have previously completed in class. However, it seems like all my time has been taken up with all the organisational stuff that comes with it. Things like test times, making prompts cards, 'admin'. All of which needs to be completed now so that when I get to tell the students, they have a clear idea of what the test is, who their partner is and when it is. Essentially, you need to cover every base so that the next 2 weeks run as smoothly as possible which is mighty important given the numbers of student that are needing to be objectively and accurately tested. Actually, I think that the week before the test is more important than the testing week itself, hence the acute sense of panic i'm going through at the moment.

Anywayanywayanyway.looking for a day when i can just do nothing. sleep thinkabout teaching.

Friday, April 08, 2005


Never mix blogs and religion. Sound advice. However, I will but only alittle. John Paul II had his funeral. A massive event in which billions were witnesses to it along with leaders of some 200 nations. I should be honest and admit that I have no real feeling about it. Of course, the passing of anybody is a tradegy in itself but one which will come to all of us whether we like it or not. As the leader of the Church, he was given a funeral to reflect his status. All pomp and ceremony. I wonder if history will be kind to him. I suspect it might. However, I read an article that suggests that he made some errors in his time but show me some who has never made an error and I will show you a liar.andthats allfor religion. not my specialist subject.

Thursday, April 07, 2005


I think it was John Lennon, whilst commenting on the filming of the Beatles 'making' what was to become Let it Be, said that ' ... you can't make music at 7am in the morning ... ' Consider Lennon (and McCartney) writing 'All you need is love' at some god awful time of the morning when they had just woken up. Would it have been as good as the one we all know. Perhaps but unlikely.

___I kind of feel that teaching is similiar, in that there a definite times of the days that I just know that my class will not be as good as it could be, if it was at a different time of the day. Morning's seem to be fine. Energy levels are up and the head is usually clear. However, fast foward to 3pm. Energy is being sucked out of me and the last thing I want is to be in front of a noisy bunch of 40+ 1St year students who have also had the energy sucked out of them. This is equally applicable to class at 9pm. They want to go home. And, so do I. Rewind though, to 6pm. Although not as mentally alert as the morning but much improved compared to 3pm. The students also seem to have a renewed vigour about them.

I wonder if some Scientist has managed to come up with an equation to explain this. There definitely is an optimium time to teach and by the same token a time when yer classes are simply crap even though many variables remain constant. Anyway, today was the day that the scientist should have been monitoring me.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005


The current chapter in my classes' textbook is about jobs...a taxi driver, an interpreter, a journalist and some stupid Scottish bloke who has 12 jobs. Greedy b>_____All for what? The chance to not be a student.

Wouldn't mind being a student again but only if the money was o.k. There is no way I could go back to being properly skint. I'm quite used to having enough money to buy food or to buy another beer or the latest pair of sunglassses. I guess i'm quite content being a's not far off being a student and you get decent holiday time with pay. Compared to other jobs, it's not that bad.

Take my gym trainer. Not much opportunity there. Admittedly, he is built like a tank and he can lift infinitely more than me but then if you spent most of your time in that enviroment, you probably would be THAT big. But is that job that bad. You get too look at 'fit' birds all day and even get to position there bodies correctly on the machines. However, on the flip side you see a lot of 'unfit' birds who you may even have to position correctly on the machines. And you would always get a laugh...especially with idiots like me at the gym trying to lift 5 kg but failing to do it or the ones who can't stretch. Hmm, me again.

I guess it's what your happiest doing. Happy.

Tuesday, April 05, 2005


Today was lovely...not only was it a National Holiday but it was like summer-ok a Scottish summer-but summer nonetheless. I almost got sunburnt!

Tried to make a real effort to get to know my Hairdresser. I had a bunch of questions ready for her. Basic, small talk style sentences that everyone takes for granted when one gets their haircut. I was nervous and I tried my best but she wasn't very forthcoming. I only found out her name, that she isn't originally from Cheonan, she has been a hairdresser for 7 years and had worked at the present hair place for 2 years. I kind of feel a little short changed. I made a real effort to be 'chatty' but she just wasn't into it. She wouldn't even reveal her age. The cheek of it. I'm really disheartened by the experience. It's not like i'm trying to pull her or anything, I was just trying to practice by /crap/ Korean and be polite. Next time, I'm just going to go in there and say nothing. That i'll teach her. Actually, come to think of it, thats what I usually do...

oh yeah...and no-one has mentioned the fact that my April 1st post was, in fact, a pile of poo. I'm too subtle for my own good.

Monday, April 04, 2005


Well...Dyervs.Bowyer. Didn't expect them to be the main attraction on Satuardays Bill at St. James' Park. But, they were...fighting with each other on the pitch. What is more bizarre is the fact that they actually play on the same team!

Seems like frustration may well have gotten the better of Bowyer who has had a pop at Dyer. Both of them were subsequently sent off. I'm still undecided of they should have been sent off given that they were on the same team. If they had been on opposing teams, then no question but same team...hmm. Anyway, it appears that they have both made up now. Although unusual, team-mates whacking each other is not unheard of ... always remember the time that Craig Levein whacked Graeme Hogg in a pre-season friendly against Raith Rovers. I was really impressed with it since Hogg was a man not to be messed with as he did have a reputation as a bit of a hard-nut. This though, didn't phase Levein who socked him with a great hook. I don't recall them getting sent off either...

Sunday, April 03, 2005


Word of the week: 'Pope'

Guess mention must be made of the Pope - John Paul, who passed away. I can't claim to be overly religious these days, however he did what he could which is all the more remarkable given all his health probelms in recent years.

Phrase of the week: 'A midget'

Uttered by Carlos Alberto, legendary captain of THAT Brazilian team in 1970. These days he is the coach of Azerbejan /spelling?/ who recently played England. He was referring to Michael Owen. Well, I guess he is!

Sight of the week: 'Beach'

Simple things really. Nice to get out of the city after a long, cold winter and see, feel and breathe the beach at it's air. Although, the sea was f_________________G cold!

Song of the week: 'Baby, one more time' by Britney

Not because it's a great song or anything...but because I did a rip-roaring version of it at the beach on thursday. Might I say, it was better than the orginal and but not as good a Darius'.

Saturday, April 02, 2005


Another one. Thankfully not mine but my old boss'. I remember when he told me that he was going to take the plunge...i told him that i was surprised given that he had been dating his girlfriend for only 4 months but he was unfazed. Clearly, since the wedding had already been arranged.
Good luck to him...

Friday, April 01, 2005


No April Fool today. I'm not clever enough to think of something witty unlike a certain Mr. Bill who has decided to give up his University position and become a Buddhist Monk. It was all done with a high degree of seriousness apart from the 'Friday, 1st April' which appeared at the bottom of his posting. That was the giveaway.

I was reading on the news today that some Japanese scientists have been working on some 'translation' device which actually sits in your ear and tranlates into your ear. It seems like it is akin to the 'Babbel Fish' from the 'Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy'. Could be a great thing even if it can only translate a portion of what the other person was saying. I wonder how long the lag time between saying and 'hearing' is. It would be perfect for my students who would finally understand all of my lessons without just smiling and nodding. The report suggested that you could download software depending on with language you needed to get translated. The Japanese scientists said that they had programmes for many of the major international languages however, had discontinued it's Korean language programme software saying that they felt that they could not morally make such a software programme based on the recent 'Dokdo' Island issue. They went further to say that Korean is likely to become 'exitinct' in the next 5 to 10 years since the majority of the country is now speaking English. The scientists did confirm that they are attempting to make a Klingon version whilst suggestions that they were trying to tailor one for George Bush where off the mark since it would be easier to make a software programme that translated 'dolphin' noises.

I'm sure the Korean governement will be protesting and we'll see some old man chop his arm off next to the Japanese Embassy again.