Tonight is Roppongi Art Night.  There is defiantly going to be a character there called “Jappy.” I guess Japan + Happy = Jappy (in some circles). I’m not sure that’s what “Jappy” means in some other circles, though.  He’s yellow and has big feet. He looks kind of vacant, but yes big-eyed and happy.  Okay, Roppongi Art Night, you’ve got me, Jappy, has already made me happy and I haven’t made it there yet. I should take off because it starts at sundown and I’m going to ride my pigmy bike, but first some updates.

Yesterday I went to an interview for a Junior high teaching job.  I went because it was on the way to doing some final hotel reviews, (more on that later). Teaching is more lucrative than anything I’ve got going on, and let me tell you it’s not lucrative.  The woman who interviewed me pronounced more consonants in the word academics than I think it needs.  Oddly I was a good student, and I’m a fine teacher.  I have this one game called English dodge ball that’s a hit with like 70% of junior high school students, sure it’s the most memorable, humiliating, I showed my panties to my class and was smacked in the face with a tennis ball by the boy I like, for the other 30%, but you can’t please them all at the same time, can you now, not when there’s English to be taught.  I bring stickers, like a serious imported sticker collection, so they will forgive me for the humiliation I set them up for.  I love it.

The interviewer wants me to come back next week for a second interview to teach specific grammar points to her and another teacher while they pretend to be students.  It should be a fun communicative activity, and she says that if I tell them to be second grade students they’ll act like second grade students, and if I tell them to act like third grade students they’ll act like third grade students, but she says the girls at this school are shy, so they’re going to act shy.  This woman is maybe fifty? But I guess very versatile. I’m not really into role playing.  But she had my messy little resume right in front of her.  The interview went on for an hour where I had been pretending I cared about the things she was expressing concern about, so I think it would have been abrupt to suddenly explain the truth, that I really don’t want to come back and role play with her, and in fact don’t want to beg for this job, and almost everything I’ve said for the last hour was the exact opposite of what I was thinking.

I must go, Jappy is coming out at sundown, but what I wanted to write about was that moment when someone in an interview starts to express the details of a job as if they should matter to you, and before you’ve even gotten the job you have to feign interest in some obscure problem that you have never thought about up until that point, and don’t identify as your own. The interviewer started to talk about the declining birth rate in Japan and how that was affecting enrollment and how they just needed to produce more students who got into top rated schools so that more students in the following year would want to attend this private all girls school.  Right, that’s not at all my problem. My head said not my problem.  My stomach said, Jesus I kind of feel sick, and my mouth was like, “right, right, right.” But in my heart I was thinking, I bet they won’t let me play my beloved English dodge-ball at this school.

Off to meet Jappy!


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