Saturday, November 15, 2008

Angel, Chelsea, Hanna, Jude, and June's Birthday Party

On Wednesday, we celebrated the November birthdays.













Fifteen Hours ahead of Normal*

It's easy for things to become habitual. Even the constant language around you that you don't understand becomes—what? You can leave Ssangmun Hanyang Apartments, take the bus to Ssangmun Station, and from there take the subway out, all without getting lost, all in English (usually). It helps to practice the Korean alphabet on the subway because you can hear the pronunciation instead of guessing it from what friends have told you. Korean, English, Chinese.

I was writing in my notebook while waiting for the train at Ssangmun Station this morning, on my way to—hell, I don't know—when an older woman sitting next to me started to speak Korean. I looked over to discover that she was looking at my notebook and was talking to me. I looked at her a moment, until she paused, maybe to give me a chance to respond, before I went back into my notebook, but she poked me and again started talking. Unfortunately, the only word I understood was the name of my own country, 미국. "{I don't know}," I told her. As I walked away, she tsk-tsked—whether because I was the subject of the chastising she might have been giving me or because I didn't understand (or, shit, both), I don't know. I couldn't catch her tone.

For multiple reasons, I haven't been able to sleep well for the past two weeks. Maybe that's putting it wrong, since I've had plenty of opportunities to sleep just fine, but I've ignored them, wanting to stay up late instead. Sometimes I'm so tired, though, that I can't figure out, for example, whether my friends are speaking Korean or English, whether I'm teaching kindergarten or sleeping in my bed. On the edge of sleep, I'm telling Bert to sit down or telling Eileen how good a student she is.

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* Because of DST, which Korea doesn't have.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Rejected Play

Every year at graduation, each of the older classes at LCI performs a play written by its foreign teacher. Here's the one I wrote for Elmo Class. It was eventually rejected.
Tristram Shandy

Characters:
Elizabeth (Chelsea)
Jenny (Wendy)
Mae (Barbie)
The Parson (June)
Dr. Slop (Bert)
Susannah (Hanna)
Toby (Andrew)
Trim (Eileen)
Tristram (Vincent)
Wadman (Angel)
Walter (Alex)
Yorick (Jude)

Tristram: Jasmine Teacher once said, "The trouble with being in a play about yourself is, you can't fool around." Why not? People fool around with themselves all the time. Hi, I'm Tristram Shandy. This is a play about how I got my name.

Mae: Shh. That's not a good way to start the play.

Tristram: What? Not a good way to start the play about me?

Mae: Yes. You're playing too much with your own play.

Tristram: What? Too much play in the play?

Mae: Shh. You're about to be named.

Elizabeth: Susannah! Susannah!

Susannah: Yes, my mistress?

Elizabeth: My baby has just been born.

Tristram: She's talking about me.

Mae: Shh. The audience can't hear over your talking. [Bows to the audience.]

Elizabeth: Go find my husband and see what name he wants to give our new baby boy.

Susannah: Yes, my lady.

Dr. Slop: And bring me a Popsicle! I'm tired and hungry after delivering that baby.

Susannah [finding Jenny, Toby, Trim, Wadman, Walter, and Yorick]: My mistress would like to know what the baby should be called.

Jenny: Ooh! Baby names! What about Santa Claus?

Trim: Santa Claus? What kind of name is that?

Yorick [shrugging]: I knew a man by that name. Something about a chimney. Or was that a dream?

Jenny: Well, what about Kimchee?

Trim: What? Kimchee Shandy?

Jenny: What's wrong with that?

Trim [looking around]: Um, nothing. Maybe we should just think about it some more.

Toby: You should name him Tristram.

Jenny: Then again, I've always liked the name Easter Bunny.

Toby: Nobody's saying it's a bad name, Jenny. Um, we just need to think more.

Wadman: What about Tim?

Yorick: Just Tim? That's pretty horrible too. So far I like Kimchee and Tristram best.

Trim: Yes, Tristram is good.

Walter: Are you crazy? Tristram is the worst name. You may as well call him Dog Breath.

Mae: Wait. Why is your name Tristram if your father didn't like it?

Tristram: Shh. You're about to find out.

Walter: He should be named Trismegistus.

Jenny: Trismegistus? That's even worse.

Yorick: Tris-what? Tricks me, just us?

Wadman: Teach me what is?

Toby: Tryst between exes?

Wadman: No, I think he said he wants Trix for breakfast.

Toby: It's nearly 2 in the afternoon, though.

Yorick: Or maybe he wants us to send him a box of Trix using FedEx. I'll get you some next time I'm in America.

Walter: No, no, no. Trismegistus. It's a great name. All the best people in the world have the best names. That's what makes them so great.

Trim: But Trismegistus? That's such a mouthful! Why not call him Toby after your brother?

Jenny: What an excellent idea!

Wadman [putting her arm around Toby]: Yes, your brother. He's so strong and brave.

Yorick: Yes, after Toby, a great soldier!

Toby [covering his cheeks]: Oh, that's too kind, calling him after me.

Walter: Which is exactly why he will be called Trismegistus. Can you remember that, Susannah?

Susannah: Yes. [She starts running back to Elizabeth, the Parson, and Dr. Slop.] Trismegistus. Trismegistus. Tris… Oh no! I've forgotten.

Elizabeth: What's the baby to be called?

Susannah: Tris-something.

The Parson: Tristram?

Susannah: No, it had some Gistus to it.

The Parson: Tristram-gistus?

Susannah: That's it: Tristram-gistus.

The Parson: There's no Gistus to it, noodle.

Dr. Slop [just waking up from a nap in a nearby chair]: Did I hear you're going to name your child Trick or Treat?

Tristram [to Mae]: Trick or Treat. That's a good bit. Imagine if I'd been named Trick or Treat.

The Parson: No, the name is Tristram. It's a good name. I baptize you, Tristram Shandy.

Dr. Slop: Where's my Popsicle, Susannah? You bring back Trick or Treat's name but not my food? Who's the doctor here? Who's done all the hard work?

Elizabeth [very irritated]: Excuse me?

Dr. Slop [ignoring Elizabeth]: I mean, what kind of world is it when a doctor can't even get a Popsicle after a hard day's honest work?

The Parson: Yeah, I'd like a Popsicle now too. Baptizing babies is hard work.

Walter [coming in]: Susannah hasn't forgotten the name, has she?

Elizabeth: No, and it's such a great name. My little Tristram Shandy!

Walter: Nooo!

Dr. Slop: I think I'd like raspberry.

Tristram [to audience]: And that's how I got my name. Thanks. You've been great.

Dr. Slop: Excuse me. Popsicle! Hello?

Monday, November 10, 2008

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Names

I meant to write about Issue 1 on October 17, when I first ran across it, and Ron Silliman wrote about it as long ago as October 5, so I'm a little behind (not to mention that I sort of hinted in my last post that I'd write about Korea this time). To make matters worse, the link to Issue 1 seems to be broken now.

Issue 1 is—or maybe was—a 3,785-page e-document available as a free download. It claims to have work from 3,164 writers, many of whom are quite innovative (check the link to Silliman's discussion above for the complete list). Here's the thing, though: none of the contributors actually submitted their work to this journal; they didn't even write the texts found therein. Imagine finding your name next to something you didn't write in a journal with a few thousand other writers who didn't write their texts either. And the texts aren't very good either.

The comment section of Issue 1's Web site was filled with writers complaining that they "didn't write this fucking garbage!" Silliman has tracked down the person behind Issue 1 and talks about legal action. "Play with other people’s reps at your own risk," he writes.

Frankly, I'm disappointed in the reaction to this project. It seems as though every time something like Issue 1 is made, it's dismissed as a stunt or threatened, whether with legal action or censorship (maybe both of those are the same thing). When it comes to the oh-so-precious author, the arguments get ridiculous and start to rely on romantic notions of who a writer is or can be, what truth is, all that shit. One comment on Issue 1's site said something like "This project was probably done by college kids who'd been listening to some douche bag theorist." How anti-intellectual, another example of writers' saying theory has nothing to do with writing.

Writing is theory.

Now here.

Nowhere.

Now hear.

Hear this now: Frankly, I think it's hilarious, this involving others in documents they didn't create. There's too much pride in authorship. So many writers have responded to Issue 1 as though their whole careers were at stake. I don't understand writing as career. I mean, it's hard and important work, but it's not permanent. None of these silly names will last. Not mine, not yours, not even Shakespeare's.

What's a name? A working title.

My Korean coworkers, students, and friends don't use their Korean names. It's fascinating that my five- and six-year-old students have gotten used to being called one name in one language and another name in another language. Imagine that in the States or Canada: having a Korean name in case you're friends with a Korean.

And so what's the big deal with someone's using your name? How obligated are you to it?

Friday, October 17, 2008

My First Couple Months

Have I written much about Korea?


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I Wonder What I Mean by Real Name

At the school where I teach, none of the kids go by their real names. I have a list of their real names somewhere, but I couldn't tell you what any of them is. Every once in a while, I'll look and call them by their Korean names, and it blows their minds. For the most part, I don't know my Korean coworkers' real names either. It's kind of cool in a way, like a club or something. Another identity. I'm a little jealous. I keep asking my kindergarten class to give me a Korean name, but they always write something on the board, laugh hysterically about it, and then erase it without telling me what it means. Transliterated, my name in Korean is ("Teem," thus "Teem Teacher").

Thursday, October 16, 2008

"Crow"

Check out Jane L. Carman's "Crow" in the new elimae.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

More on Yorick

All I blame him for—or rather, all I blame & alternately like him for, was that singularity of his temper, which would never suffer him to take pains to set a story right with the world, however in his power.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

The Phrase True Story Is Useless

Two things continue to bother me about the photographs of my students. The first is their presentation as THE TRUTH. What I love about postmodern art is its tendency to admit its presence as construction/constructed: effective at effecting effects, yes, but nonetheless not THE TRUTH, whatever that is. Play in the footlights, Shklovsky says. Disrupt the performance in order to call attention to its presence as performance. What's going on with the pictures is an attempt to sell the school. No looking at the camera. Don't give away our awareness of the recording process (I use that last word lightly).

Fuck capital-everything the truth.

The other thing getting at me is the emphasis on perfection. No mistakes, we're saying, means a mastering of English. Smiles automatically mean a willingness to learn. "Fuck it up," I want to tell my students. "Do anything but be afraid of language."

Sunday, October 5, 2008

English in the Foreign-Language Section

The language is conjugated according to whom one is talking. Forget the subject.
[E]nough of this cursed first person,…I'll get out of my depth if I'm not careful. But what then is the subject?… Bah, any old pronoun will do, provided one sees through it. Matter of habit. To be adjusted later. Where was I?1
"한국에서 무엇을 합니까?"

"씁니다."2

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1 Samuel Beckett, The Unnamable.
2 All politeness:
"What do you do in Korea?"
"I write."

More with Adaptation

While looking for this,

,

I serendipitously found this,

.

From the looks of this preview, it seems that the movie focuses on fans' adaptations of the Harry Potter series and on Warner Bros.' reaction to these so-called violations of copyright.

What makes art exciting and culturally valuable is adaptation, its continued reevaluation and incorporation or rejection. No art lasts unless somebody finds it useful.

By the by, if you haven't listened to Brad Neely's Wizard People, Dear Readers while watching the first Harry Potter movie on mute, I highly recommend it.

Apology (?)/Defense (?); Video As Though to Say, "Shut the Door"; Pedagogy of Deception

I'm not sure why I've delayed posting. After Wallace's suicide, I felt depressed—not enough to prevent my writing, but. I'm not exactly sure what I'm doing in this space. With this so-called push-button publishing. It fascinates me, this never-intended-for-a-book space (though I have no book yet). The exposure makes me nervous, actually, but at the same time, I'm attracted to the fluidity of it, the construction, as it were, of some kind of online identity, as though such an identity somehow correlated to an extratextual persona or event instead of merely hinting at a mélange of possibilities or discrepancies between the person you know and the person as he recognizes or deceives himself.



On September 10, I had my first encounter with the photographers who come to the school every once in a while. Two at a time, my students sat with me, and we acted out scenes as though I were reading to them or helping them with their homework. Neither of these situations is unusual, but the shots had to be very specific, with everybody's smiling face assuring the parents that all was well. The students didn't know what was going on. I was talking to them in English while all the other adults in the room were yelling at them in Korean. To make matters worse, the photographers kept yanking the kids by their wrists in order to pose them. "Don't fucking touch my children!" I wanted to snarl. On top of this, all the September birthdays were being celebrated. Every month all the children with birthdays have parties, and the photographers come and shoot candles being blown out. The shots are never of the children enjoying the party; rather, the kids are posed and have to wait till the photos are shot before they're allowed to open presents or eat. (Yeah, I'm using the passive a lot, because there's no agency for the kids, and I want to acknowledge the adults as little as possible.) Fine. Whatever. But the school forgot to take pictures in February and March, so instead of letting it go, the kids who had birthdays in those months were posed, party hats on their heads, candles in front of them. One of those kids was my Bert (aka Dracula), who asked me, "Teacher, why am I here?" I didn't know what to tell him. Instead, we both smiled for the camera as I hugged him and he blew out candles on a cake he wouldn't be able to eat, presents spread out as though they were for him. As soon as the photographers were finished, I told Bert to take off the stupid birthday hat and run for it, to enjoy the lunch hour they'd pulled him and me from.

And so I've been wondering since then why all this shit bothered me so much. The old question "Well, isn't an image supposed to represent truth?" is ridiculous. Photography is not representational, nor are children inherently innocent (or inherently evil or inherently anything), yet there was something disgusting here. It was the everything's-fine, this-school-works, your-child-learns-a-lot bullshit of it all. The ceremonial imperative. Not to mention that it interrupted most of the morning, during which my students could have learned something.

Also, for the past few weeks, each class has been videotaped so that the students' parents can watch what goes on. The only problem is that everything is once again staged. Whenever a child gives the wrong answer, the camera's shut off, the child is coached to give the correct answer before the camera rolls again, and the mistake is edited out. Each class was supposed to be filmed only once, but because there are too many "mistakes"—that is, in pronunciation, grammar, anything—in the videos, everybody is being reshot. Fuck, man, my class works because the students are allowed to make mistakes. Language is not a script. Learning is not perfection. My kids (yes, by September 10, I was already possessive and protective of them) are stressed enough about having to speak a foreign language all day—at five and six years old, no less—and I worry that the emphasis on perfection will make them hesitant to speak or write in English at all.

It's tempting to tell you to check out the videos I shot on September 9 to see how the kids really are, but those videos don't capture the truth either. There is no capturing, no observation without alteration, but at least the kids had fun that day.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Coach Wiener

I teach gym to all the older kindergarten classes. Sometimes I feel like Coach Wiener.





Thursday, September 25, 2008

Adaptation



The fluid text, motherfucker.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

More of Elmo Class

Today my kindergarten class surprised me with cakes for my birthday, so instead of doing any work, we shot videos (which are a little rough and shaky because I had to use the camera on my MacBook). Unfortunately, June was absent.



Sunday, September 7, 2008

A Little about Normal

A few days after I arrived in Seoul, Pequin posted one of my photographs, "Evacuate," to go with Kevin Ó Cuinn's text "After They Got the Word." "Evacuate" was taken in the basement of Milner Library, Normal, Illinois, during the summer of 2007. Not much is known about Normal except all the usual obvious jokes regarding its name. Some believe that life started there, while others state that the city was built as a model of the events described in Nehemiah. Whatever the plans surrounding it, on September 9, 1999, its builders went on strike. Ó Cuinn's text pretty much follows the negotiations as they actually happened. The Normal project was abandoned permanently on November 10, 1999. It's true shit. Google that shit, man. I came across the city by accident when I was trying to escape the Midwest on August 8, 2006. The fact that Pequin matched my photo to Ó Cuinn's text, both of which deal with the same phenomenon, is, believe it or not, purely coincidental.

A Post (Because Mother Worries When I Don't Update)

I've been sick for the past week: the flu or some such shit.

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Yesterday I went to Gyeongbokgung Palace and the Kumho Museum of Art. Because my camera wasn't working, I didn't take it, which is just as well because I'm not a good tourist anyway (feel free to google images of the palace, though). I promise to take pictures next time.

It's hard for me to explain how I feel about being in such places. Both palace and museum were amazing, and despite the fact that my nose was running and I was coughing, I made myself stay for hours and wander around. On the one hand, it's important to learn as much as possible. Joe Amato once said, "You shouldn't not want to learn everything," a quote I really dig because saying something like "This doesn't apply to me, so why should I learn it?" starts to limit what you can do/be. On the other hand, however, tourism seems to make an exotic species out of somebody else's life.

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My favorite place to write in Seoul is on the subway.

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Little kids in the streets keep coming up to me to practice their English.

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L., a friend from Newfoundland, was arrested last week when immigration came to her school, requested to see everybody's visa, and discovered that she didn't have one and was working illegally. The director of her school apparently knows somebody high up, because L. was released and her case erased.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

"Fish Heads"

Every month each class at LCI chooses a song to learn and then performs it in front of the rest of the school. Here's the one I want to teach my class this month.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Three Quick Things I Love about South Korea

The manwon, the 10,000-won bill, features Sejong the Great, creator of Hangul, the Korean alphabet. There's also an excerpt from the first work ever written in Korean.

At restaurants and bars, you don't tip, and the service is generally a lot better than it is in the States. A lot better.

It's perfectly OK to walk down the street drinking alcohol (though I don't usually see folks doing so, not in Banghak-dong anyway).

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Alas, Poor YORICK!

I'm rereading Tristram Shandy. This is one of my favorite passages about Yorick:
For, to speak the truth, Yorick had an invincible dislike and opposition in his nature to gravity:—not to gravity as such;—for where gravity was wanted, he would be the most grave or serious of mortal men for days and weeks together;—but he was an enemy to the affectation of it, and declared open war against it, only as it appeared a cloak for ignorance, or for folly: and then, whenever it fell in his way, however sheltered and protected, he seldom gave it much quarter.

House of Leaves Trailer

Mark Z. Danielewski's House of Leaves was the last book I read before leaving the States. If there were a movie for it, this would be the trailer.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

I Think I Have the Alphabet Down

Some Bullshit (As Though Poetry Needed Any More)

Read this post by poet Stacey Lynn Brown and avoid sending anything to Cider Press Review.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

미안합니다

I just went out for food. A little girl, not even a year old probably, kept staring at me. "{Hello}," I said to her over and over, waving. At one point, she came pretty close to where I sat. "{Hello}," I said again, and she started crying. "{I'm sorry}," I told her mother, who only smiled and shrugged, taking the little girl into her arms. On my way out, the mother waved to me and took the little girl's hand and made it wave too.

What a great evening, not because I made a little girl cry, of course, but because it's so easy to hang out with Canadians and other Americans and to speak English all the time, to stick to the words you use constantly, like 맥주 ("beer"), instead of actually interacting with Koreans. And though this interaction was small and hardly on an intellectual level, it helped counter some of the loneliness. It's nice after a day of teaching in an English school to be the one who doesn't understand much and must work to talk to someone so young.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Elmo and Corey Teacher

Around 11:30 a.m. the day after I arrived, Ms. K. picked me up from the Theme Motel and drove me to LCI. Even as late as this, I wasn't sure I was the right Jonathan, not until I saw a sign for LCI Academy as we pulled up to the school. Ms. K. immediately introduced me to J., my morning supervisor, who told me about my kindergarten class, Elmo. After a few minutes of going over the schedule, J. introduced me to Elmo's then-current teacher, Corey, who was going to lunch with A.* They each wore T-shirts, shorts, and sandals, and I, already feeling ridiculous in a long-sleeve button-up and khakis, felt even sillier. The three of us went to a restaurant most of the teachers frequent, where I had a wonderful hot dish of rice and vegetables with a fried egg on top, the name of which I forget (I thought it was pibimppop, but I ordered that earlier today at the same place, and it wasn't the same thing, unless I accidentally ordered it cold today [it's entirely possible that I nodded my head to the wrong thing (an annoying habit I didn't know I possessed [how easy it is to nod, to use the body to try to effect meaning (or to pretend)])]).

When we returned to LCI, Corey introduced me as Tim Teacher to Elmo. As I write this, I feel extremely lucky because, as I hear, most of the other teachers didn't receive such an orientation. Hours after getting off the plane, they faced a kindergarten class alone and were told, "Start teaching." For the rest of the day and the next, I got to know the children and the routine. I also get to teach gym for the other classes. One of the most fun things in those first few days was watching a bunch of six-year-olds play dodgeball. Another great thing about teaching over here is that there isn't this avoidance of contact that you have in the States. It's perfectly OK to hug or pat the children, which takes some getting used to after the oh-my-god-our-children-must-not-be-touched sterility of the States. Corey has done an amazing job with the children of Elmo. Everybody says they're the best-behaved class and maybe the smartest. He had them doing stretches in the morning, part of a routine I plan to continue. Corey was an amazing teacher, and taking over his class is a privilege.

On Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, I teach a second-grade class in the afternoon. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, I teach another, younger kindergarten class made up of five-year-olds who speak hardly any English, which requires the use of what little Korean I know, like ("yes") and 아니 ("no"). S., my afternoon supervisor, must translate often.

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* OK, at this point, I'm not so sure what I should do with these names. Somehow the use of abbreviations seems too—what are the words?—unfriendly (?) for A. et al., on one hand, especially after all the time I've spent with them, and too informal (?) for Ms. K., the director of the school, on the other; however, I feel too weird about using actual names of people I just met less than a week ago without their permission. The exception, of course, is Corey, which is, yes, I know, inconsistent and all, but the kids loved him, and I hear "Corey Teacher" all day, and this one actual name seems important, and.

Fourteen Hours ahead of Normal*

Every few minutes in the San Francisco International Airport, an announcement came on to warn all passengers that the threat level was orange, whatever that meant. At the layover in Tokyo, however, there was no such announcement, nor was there when I finally arrived in Seoul. I got off the plane and followed the signs to immigration, expecting the process to take a long time, but it took only a few minutes. No questions. My written statement of having nothing to declare was sufficient. No bag search.

Near the exit to the airport, several people stood with signs for arriving passengers. One had "Jonathan"1 on it, but because it didn't have a last name with it, I wasn't sure whether I was the correct Jonathan. Besides, I thought, doesn't the level of formality in the Korean language necessitate the use of my last name? After seeing no other signs for Jonathan, I approached the man holding the Jonathan sign and said, "I'm Jonathan Lantz." He beckoned me over to a trash can, where he threw away the sign and got on his phone. After speaking for a few minutes, in Korean, of course, he handed me the phone.

"안녕하세요?"2 I said.

"Hello, Jonathan Teacher," said a woman. Again with the use of my first name. At least this time there was a title, closer to what I expected. "Can you speak Korean?"

"Not much. Just hello, thank you, and goodbye."

"The driver's going to take you to a motel, and I'll call you tomorrow at 11. You get some rest."

I handed the phone back to the driver, and he led me to his van. I still wasn't sure he had the right Jonathan. Also, I wasn't sure whether I'd have to pay for the cab ride. An American ten-dollar bill was the only money I had. I quietly sat up front with the driver as he drove through toll after toll, heading east. At one point, far too late, I asked, "LCI sent you, right?" He just shook his head, not to give me an answer, as I realized later, but to indicate that he didn't speak English.

I felt like shit from the long flight, and fighting sleep, I repeated 감사합니다3 in my head, concentrating not only on the sound but also on the Korean spelling, so that I could say it to the driver when we finally arrived. I was so tired, though, that the word had fallen apart by the time we arrived at the Theme Motel, and it came out as "kahm-dee" when I said it to the driver. Nice work, Lantz.

Crashed. Dreams all night about translating German into Korean.

Woke at 6 and forced myself to lie in bed till 8, at which time I showered, dressed, cursed myself for having bought khakis, cursed the wrinkled button-up shirt, and headed out, walking north for half an hour. When I returned, the man at the front desk spoke to me in Korean, none of which I understood, and followed me to my room upstairs. When he saw me enter the main part of my room, his voice rose a little, and he pointed to the area by the door. Immediately I felt ridiculous for not having removed my shoes. "감사합니다," I said, realizing I'd been nodding my head like a fool the entire time.

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* Normal, Illinois, that is, where I lived from August 8, 2006, to July 14, 2008.
1 My first name, a name I hardly ever use.
2 Annyeonghaseyo? ("Hello?" [Literally "Are you at peace?"])
3 Gamsahamnida. ("Thank you.")

Monday, August 18, 2008

The Last Bit of America

Later today I leave for South Korea. I've been hired as an ESL teacher for kindergarten and elementary students at Language Clubs International Academy in Seoul.

The flight itinerary:
today, 2 p.m. (PDT), depart from San Francisco
tomorrow, 5:05 p.m. (JST), arrive in Tokyo
6:50 p.m., depart from Tokyo
9:35 p.m. (KST), arrive in Seoul