Things I Say to Myself as an English Teacher


"Do I have to go today?" Every morning. Never fails. I ask myself how important my role is in the education of Japan's future. I always conclude that my role is very small, and they most likely won't remember a quarter of what I teach them in a year from now, but I still force myself to go...

"How casual of an outfit can I get away with?" I'm technically supposed to still be wearing business clothes to work. But, the Japanese teachers don't, so I don't. Black skinnies, it is!

"How slow can I walk and still get there on time?" I actually enjoy taking my time walking to school, while listening to music.

"Once you get through today, you'll be a day closer to the weekend." I live for the weekends. And then the weekend comes and it's over way too soon.

"I hope the kids don't decide to be devils today." It happens. Some days, it seems like certain classes decide, as a class, to be on their worst behavior. Just for me.

"Damn, I'm bored." On some days, I have so much free time that I sit at my desk and just stare into space.

"Holy shit, I'm tired." On other days, I barely have any breaks at all, and I could probably pass out at lunch.

"It's kind of awkward how no one talks to me." With the language barrier, most of the other teachers barely talk to me. But, I barely make an effort to talk to them either, even if I do understand a good amount of Japanese. And I like it that way. Don't talk to me. I don't want to pretend that I'm nice or interested in your life. (I was joking, if you didn't catch that.)

"Damn, that kid is cute." There are some ridiculously adorable kids that have hit the gene lottery. It makes me want to meet their parents and give them a high-five.

"Damn, that kid is ugly." And at the same time, there are kids that didn't get so lucky in the gene pool. It makes me want to meet their parents and give them a hug.

"Wow, that girl is a bitch." 11-12 yrs old girls, man. It's the start of the bitchy years.

"That boy needs a slap." So many naughty boys, so many. Many of them have recently realized how funny it is to constantly say "sex" to each other. Yeah. Real funny, boys.

"Can you guys shut the fuck up." It doesn't matter if they're loud in a good, energetic way, or in a rowdy way, they are always fucking noisy. And I just always want them to shut the fuck up.

"I wish that kid was my little brother." I only think this about boys haha. I have never wanted a younger sister, and I guess I still don't.

"Why are you all so tiny?!" And I mean, TINY. I can easily move them around while they're sitting in their chairs. I swear I was not that tiny at that age nor were any of the kids I went to school with.

"Holy shit, you guys reek." Classes after lunch in the summer are the absolute worst. They are dripping with sweat. Yuck.

"How many more hours do I have left?" From the moment I arrive, I am counting down the hours until I can leave.

"How do teachers do it?" Being responsible for tiny human beings is tough.

"I hope I wasn't that irritating as a child." I probably was.

"Damn, that kid is cute." Oh, did I say that already? There are a lot of cute kids.

"I should have never talked to you in Japanese, because now you won't stop talking to me in Japanese." Every damn day. English! We are in English class! English only! I know English is hard. English is stupid. I'm sorry. But, I understood about 50% of that hyper-speed rant you just had, filled with your dialect and slang. Work with me, please.

"Wow, I love that kid." There are a few that I just absolutely adore and I look forward to seeing every single time.

And occasionally,

"You guys are awesome." Most of the time, they are. Well, most of them are, anyway...