Monday, 19 April 2010

PostHeaderIcon 200

Apparently this is my 200th blog entry.  Although that might count some rough drafts I never posted.  Anyway, it's a bit boring.

The internet connection at work is down because someone downloaded a virus on the network over the weekend.  This has saddened me greatly as I usually use the last hour of Monday to read all the football results from the weekend.  I’m pretty sure they suspect Alex or I even though we haven’t been into work since Friday.  Gaijin have many diseases you see. The severing of this vital umbilical cord to the outside word has left me lost in the office.  I’ve just realised that I live in Japan and I’m surrounded by Japanese people who are actually working.  I can’t even remember the last time I picked up my books and studied some of the language.  The lure of the internet with the facebooking and Wikipedia binges is just too much after a day teaching the same old, mundane textbook English.  Therefore, I am taking solace in Microsoft Word and using the time to keep up the entries in my faltering blog of doom.

I’m usually quite tired because I’m lazy and often stay up to 2am playing games or watching documentaries about the Byzantine Empire.  Still, I am absolutely exhausted at the moment as the past week was fairly busy.  After another weekend of heavy drinking I had my third taiko performance last Monday for Australian exchange students.  Then there was the usual midweek dross of English class before more football/taiko practice and getting my terrible 70s afro shaved off.  Taiko went well even though I made a mess of the very first part of the song.  I showed my English class a Scottish film from the 80s called Local Hero.  It’s a nice little film about an oil company wanting to buy a small fishing village.  I thought the pace and story would go down well but it was muzukashikatta as usual.  It made me feel a little bit homesick actually.  There is a bit in the film when one of the Scottish actors (Malcolm Tucker from The Thick Of It) speaks a little bit of Japanese.  It’s possibly the worst attempt that I’ve ever heard.  At one point he is teaching the girl katakana English which is basically English after being butchered by the constraints of the Japanese language. 

 I got my hair cut after about four months of untamed growth.  I always forget the inevitable outcome when I start to grow my hair out.  It seems to defy the laws of physics by not actually increasing in length but doubling in weight every day.  The woman who cuts it is actually really nice and is the only hairdresser I’ve been to here who doesn’t have a constant look of terror on her face.  I was in Tokyo last summer and the bloke just decided to shave it to the bone even though I told him in Japanese not to.  The first barber I ever went to gave me a shave and cut my neck so bad that he had to go upstairs to his house to get plasters (band aids yanks).  Anyway, my head is now exceptionally light and all the junior high school lassies think I look super cool again.

This weekend saw me play my annual game of football at Awaji-shima (the island between my island and the mainland) in the ALT tournament.  I’ve really enjoyed the tournament in the previous two years but this year was a bit of a letdown.  The Kochi team suffered the equivalent of two broken metatarsals in the pre-tournament build-up.  We usually take the biggest crowd of people and whilst losing every game we tend to bring the most banter and atmosphere.  Sadly, the truly dire influx of the new Kochi folk and a timetable clash with the JET musical scuppered all hopes and dreams.  In the end only four of us made the journey to the legendary venue where grass is said to have grown once*.  We ended up joining a team called Inter Hyogo who were kind enough to let us tag along and play the odd half as a substitute.  They were a good crowd of lads and it was nice to have a bit of football banter again.  We ended up losing every game on the Saturday… worse than Kochi last year.  They were all good players but the team just didn’t work at all this year.  It was quite frustrating getting only a brief run out but I enjoyed just getting a game.  I don’t think I contributed anything at all.  It’s a shame because in previous years I’ve managed to put in a good show.  Although, I guess playing in defence and left mid for the first time in a decade on a torn up pitch didn’t help.  Well, that and being an unfit pie.  Nobody came out drinking either apart from a Canadian girl (who had been to East Kilbride bizarrely), a South African called Zuwaeli (guess) and a Japanese lad.  My newly married mate, Peter, showed his athletic prowess by spending the evening hugging the toilet.  We managed to make the next day’s games despite the hangovers and continued to play awful and burn another layer of skin off ourselves.  It was a good weekend and I liked just striking up conversations and adding more acquaintances to the pile.  I reckon I’ll probably take charge of the organising and hopefully give the Kochi team a kick in the arse for next year.  I never thought I’d say this but I hope some big lads from home get sent to Kochi this autumn.  My forehead looks like a smacked arse at the moment.  I’ve been getting 日焼け(sun + bake) shouted at me all day.

Well, that just about concludes a traditional blog entry.  It’s never as good, is it?  How about I tell you about what I ate?  That’ll add to the boredom level.  I think I’m going to have sandwiches and soup for dinner.  I can’t handle making any more meals with rice or noodles.  I’ll probably have at least two cups of tea.  Actually, I forgot to mention the bloody gaijin musical.  We made it back just in time to watch the performance in my town.  I’ll be honest… every year the musical is performed I get a bit annoyed at everyone involved in it.  The JET community becomes this cliquey mess of impromptu dances and songs.  Still, there is no doubt everyone works hard and they put on a very good show for the old folk in the prefecture.  I think this year's was the best I've seen in the past few years.  It is very professional and well done for the scattered JETs who can only meet up at weekends occasionally.  My friend Michelle was exceptionally good in it.  She managed to sing some sort of gospel/soul song in Japanese which I thought would be impossible.  The musical itself is performed in the local dialect and it usually mixes a western and Japanese fairytale.  It does work even though I like to think if the opposite was to happen back home.  “Hey Scots!  Please come and watch some Japanese people perform in Glaswegian!”  Actually, that would be wonderful.  Right… work is finished.  Goodbye.

*There is no grass in Japan.

Edit:  I saw a second performance of the musical and it was fantastic.  Just incase anyone stumbles upon it and thinks I was too harsh.  It was very good indeed.


Super Awesome Guy said...

Shame I couldn't make it to the Soccer mate. Bogged down as I was with babysitting exchange students from Port Lincoln. It was great getting 27 hours Daikyu in one week, but those buggers ruined two weekends in a row -_-

I would have really enjoyed it and might even get involved next year if you don't mind a non-JET coming down for it. Good Bloggin, keep up the hard work.

Also I feel ya on the Sakura. Stupid Gaijin.

Anonymous said...

"I’ll be honest… every year the musical is performed I get a bit annoyed at everyone involved in it. The JET community becomes this cliquey mess of impromptu dances and songs."


Lt. Columbo said...

I follow this blog from all the way over in moscow (although im english)and cant get enough of the cynicism.
keep em' coming !

Ahoy hoy said...

Super Awesome: Yer, it's a shame we didn't have a team. You should come to the rugby next month.

Anonymous: I liked the musical. I broke my leg in my first year and lived like a hermit. I went to the city to help with the musical just after and wasn't noticed as everyone was too high on their thespian pedestal. Then there were the performances at the bowling, hirome, and my spare room.

Cheers Lt. Columbo. I'm sure my miserable and cynical nature will continue to post this drivel for the rest of my time here.

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About Me

I am a 24 year old Scotsman currently teaching English to Japanese schoolchildren. I live in a small town on the east coast of Kochi prefecture.