Life in the Land of the Rising Sun

Friday, October 28, 2005

November? What's That?

The fifth sentence of my 23rd posting on this site is "Oh, and also cuteness", but I don't know enough other bloggers to carry on the tag. I guess I really suck. So there. Go bite. Zark off.

Anyway, it turns out that I may have spoken too soon. This week I had my 9th graders do an assignment in which they had to plan an imaginary surprise party for someone, invite their classmates, and explain what they planned to give the birthday boy/girl as a present and why (in English, of course). Almost a fifth of the kids planned their parties for Hiroshi. None of them did it for Hard Gay. (However, several kids said they planned to invite Hard Gay to parties they planned for classmates.)

Those 9th grade Oral Communication classes are fun. This year's 9th grade class seem like angels compared with those we had to suffer through the last two years in a row. We're also using a new textbook and approach now that are much better than before, and we're getting much better results even in standardized achievement testing. I guess the "team from purgatory" of myself and Mr. O, with whom I've been coerced obligated to team-teach these classes for the past three years (despite my protests and our occasional screaming fights) is finally producing concrete results. (Of course, I won't bother mentioning all the lesson time lost due to software problems, system crashes, and computer pilot error thanks to Mr. O's irrational obsession with technology as an end-all solution. Oops...did I just mention that? Never mind. I didn't say anything.)

Speaking of arrogant fools obligations, I just finished writing up my schedule for the following month to give to my in-laws. I realize that doing so is almost totally pointless, because they:

a. only look at it once and then stash it in a drawer somewhere and forget about it
b. will do whatever they want whenever they want anyway, citing their "duty to the community as exemplary citizens" (i.e. they are obligated to sit and drink tea with the neighbors until they're satisfied the conversation is over), and if that winds up totally screwing up my schedule, they'll somehow find a way to insist that it's my fault.

Even so, I write the schedule up every month to give my father-in-law one less way to blame me for his own arrogance business.

Okay, anyway...

I tallied up all those marks on the schedule for the month of November, and I found there are no more than twelve days that don't have some special activity planned (i.e. work doesn't count). The Kashima Philharmonic Orchestra (new motto: "We can finally say that we don't suck anymore, which means we'll work even harder") accounts for a full eight days including our regular 2-hour Monday night rehearsals and special weekend sessions (which tend to eat up a full day). Our annual classics concert is coming up in early December, so we're starting to pick up the pace. Add to that the Kashima Seaside Jazz Festival (my school jazz band appears), two other music club events, and the 9th grade class' four-day field trip to Hiroshima and Kyoto, and I'm not left with much time to recover my wits.

I just hope I emerge without a nervous tic and a habitual drool. I'm happy that I'm working the mold and rust out of my fingers again and am finally able to play all those complicated turns and tricks on my clarinet in Moussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition, but I do like to have a life sometimes...

Just to prevent this from ending on a negative, "gripe & bitch" note (hey, I am moody, right?), here's a picture of Kiyomizu Temple in Kyoto with some of its famous autumn leaves. I'll be going there yet again (my 7th time) on the upcoming field trip, but I never get sick of the sight!


  • I really need to proof my comments for errors. Sorry.

    For you to say you are busy is really something. You always seem to be very busy to me.

    Kiyomizu Temple is beautiful with those autumn tints. I've only been there in the spring time, but it is a wonderful building to view at any time. Have a great trip, 'hope it goes smoothly.

    xgasit - what one does to relieve bloating after a big meal

    By Blogger Pandabonium, at 6:30 PM  

  • Have a great jazz concert tomorrow. I'm sorry I won't be able to make it. Stay cool. I'm sure you will.

    When it was hip to be hep you were probably hep. Or maybe you're not that old. Sorry. Anyway, have fun.

    hvhma: what you say to your mom when her hummer runs out of fuel.

    By Blogger Pandabonium, at 4:45 PM  

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