Thursday, May 14, 2015

Wow an update many many years later, I wonder if anyone whom I started this blog ring with a long time ago from /jp/ is still around to see this. Just some random day I googled my old username I always use (an embarrassing amalgamation of just my given name plus some numbers, seems so chuu-ni like, except more boring) and came across thy old blog. Feeling nostalgic, and needing to reflect on my life thus far, I feel an urge to post.

Such a long time has passed that I guess I'll update what's been goin on in the life of me. I need something to do to yet again fix a crazy sleep schedule I have, and I'll write in my blog-o-journal to pass the time. Beware it might be very tl;dr, and if anyone's reading this, depending on how far I get before I pass out and nap.

Let's see, since my last post here this was around the time I had dropped out of my College's computer engineering program, and subsequently became super neet. Thus with my /jp/ nakama, concorted this plan of making some sort of dough in the blog ring. I don't know how it works now, but from the pageviews I actually got something of $50 it said for it? But you couldn't cash out until $100, and the prospect of actually making money from it was pretty nil, so I gave up.

Around that time I was actively searching for work too, and I did find it eventually with Safeway (for those not in the west coast USA, its a big grocery store chain). An old female friend of mine's mom used to work there, she said it was alright, and I'd take anything, so when they offered me the job (even doing a position I originally didn't want; deli vs. night-shelver) I took it. I was just happy to have some sort of means to be independent, take a break from school and think over my life. The job was dumb of course, but the people I worked with were cool so it wasn't so bad. I gained some good skills to interact with total strangers, because I wasn't used to it before, but it gave me a push to be more comfortable talking with strangers in general.

Well lets fast forward super far to now, I graduated from Uni finally, not in CS or anything but in a throwaway liberal arts degree International Studies. I just wanted to finish college as fast as possible and that was the way. My intention was to teach English abroad, which is what I'm finally currently doing here now in Taiwan. I wanted to go to Japan and Korea initially, but the process was taking a while so I expanded my options. I had been to Taiwan when I was a teenager; my father is from there, and he gave me the opportunity to learn language and culture there one summer. That's a story in its own save for another time perhaps. So anyways I applied to random buxiban, or cram school here. For those not in the know, basically this is the bottom-of-barrel teaching gigs in Asia, but for someone with no experience like me, you can't bite the hand that feeds you so to speak, when not many hands will even give you anything. Public school or government programs are usually much better but also much more competitive. And I had been searching for a long time... after graduating from college, I went on another extended NEET vacation, but I traveled and yolo'd more, visiting friends across west coast. But when my money ran low, had to couch it up with some friends. They were gracious enough to let me leech off them for 6 months, but that time had to go and I moved back home. It was depressing, but I guess that motivated me to really leave that much more.

So here I am, working at this very sketchy cram school called Gloria English Schools. Granted, its not as bad as it might seem, and some other foreign teachers like me stayed here a long time, so they like it. And I really do love Taiwan too. You get that modernized asian culture at a fraction of the price, and people here are friendly. The arcades aren't as awesome as they are in Japan, but hey, you can't beat the holy land ya know? Anyways, when I got here, I didn't know jack shit about teaching. And they didn't really train me at all. Just observe some classes, and then they throw you right in. I was fine with that kind of unpreparedness of the situation, but they just have ridiculous expectations of you. And it entirely depends on how your coteacher (the native teacher who teaches with you; we don't teach a class alone, which is nice, at least at first). You get a school or teacher that's just jaded and hates dealing with newbies like me, then whelp, they fuck you and don't give you hours. They didn't totally screw me over, I still made enough to get by and save quite a bit, but it could have been better.

Without going into a giant rant (or have I already), basically the take away here I think, is for people like us, work will always suck. Dealing with people enough as it is is really taxing, and when those people really don't like you, for whatever illogical reason it is, it really wears you down. At safeway, even if I was doing backbreaking work for 8 hours a day, if the people I was with were cool and I could be real with them, it let me keep going. Here, and this is an Asia-culturual thing with face and all that, some people here just cannot be real with anyone who is not their immediate family. They act two faced, and will throw you under a bus at the drop of a hat. Its unfortunate this happened to me, and I really want to say my experience was good here. I think Taiwan is still an awesome place, taking Chinese classes at the nearby uni was very enjoyable, but this kind of work, when treated by people like this, is just so demeaning and soul crushing. We're not really teachers here; we're clowns. It's more like a glorified daycare center, but this culture of cram school, and school school school demands kids learn something from it. But they're kids and its not possible to study so much in a day.

ffffuuu ranting again, but I guess I just need to get this off my chest. Point is, working will always suck. There might be an awesome dream job that you can 100% enjoy and have it not feel like work, but I don't know what that might be for me, and I think jobs like that are so rare. But its the people you work with that make the difference. Your coworkers are awesome, and a shit job can be awesome. Your coworkers and management hate you, for whatever bullshit, illogical reason (also noted the vast majority of this school is staffed by women) and its your end. Granted I do have some cool coteachers, but a few sour apples can still completely kill you, especially if its management. And for me, being halfway across the world from my home, friends, and family, for sure affects our psyche here. Maybe I didn't do enough ass kissing at first, or maybe its completely a race thing, as I'm half Asian, and its an established thing in Asia that really discriminates against Asian-American English teachers, because as we know, this place is full of racist ass fucks. America is racist too, but at least we actually have diversity and different people in our culture. For most of Asia, their only view into the west is through our media, which as we know is not indicitive of how it really is. Of course that goes both ways if just watching animoo and we think Japan is some magikaru anime rando, but we're smart and know better than that. Either way, this is what I wanted to do after college, and I'm still glad I did it. I wish the experience working here coould have been more positive, as my other friends and people have had, but I suppose it could be worse. Perhaps too I don't know how good or bad I have it as this was my first gig here.

But there you have it, this is my rant/story of what i've been doing to pay the bills at least. I guess I followed my dreams and goals of teaching abroad here to try it out, but for sure I won't keep doing this. I guess I'll keep studying moonrunes here, learn Chinese, Japanese, and use it to do what I suppose? Or maybe I'll go back to computers since that'd be way better money, and could find a job back in my hometowns in that field. I just can't wait for my last day and go on a yolo vacation all around Asia. Haven't planned it at all, but I'm looking forward to bumming around and not doing this shit joke job.

It's so funny, finding this blog after almost 5 years, and the situation I was in then versus now. I wonder what the next 5 years holds for me. If anyone actually read this, you have my regards space cowboy. I miss being a neet though, those were good times. Just not a very sustainable lifestyle, unless you're very rich unfortunately.