Monday, November 28, 2005

Yours Sincerely Waxing Away

Monday 28 November 2005

Strange past week.Punctuated by three notable deaths.
George Best,59, passed away due to major organ failure after 2 months in hospital and what seems decades of news reports of his fight with alcoholism.Hard to believe that, despite this and the fact that he retired at 26 and never appeared at a World Cup he's still held in such high regard.Ironic too,as others less kind already noted, he died in the same week England introduced new drinking laws which in theory could allow 24 hour drinking licences.
Pat Morita,73,"Mr Miyagi" of Karate Kid fame also died this week.He starred with a very young Hilary Swank in one of the series.Ms Swank you may remember had the female lead role in Million Dollar Baby which i saw recently.
Finally Richard Burns,34, former World Rally Champion and the only Englishman to win that title thus far.I recall an interview on NZ television as he had competed in the Rally of New Zealand.He seemed a determined even driven man.I couldnt help but think how young and unfortunate his death was as i read this mornings paper.

Workin Man Blues...
What follows is a rant.....
So I work for an English conversation school company.Have for the last 6 years or so.Been reasonably happy.Met some stupid people.Met far fewer I would willingly spend time with.Seems theres an inverse relationship at work...the people you loathe stay longer and either get promoted,fired,or find better jobs.Not necessairly in that order.
I have to admit I only stay in my present position for purely selfish,mercenary reasons.Money.It used to be good.

Over the past 2 years due to falling work conditions and exchange rate fluctuations this has changed.Any advantage I had has been eroded.Plus if you factor in the intangibles such as lack of fresh air,space and cheap cheese my situation has got grim.
And its getting grimmer.The company introduced a grammar free book with disastrous results.Higher level students can parrot drivel that leads nowhere.I made the mistake of suggesting to the staff at least half of the language in the book native speakers would never use conversationally.Let loose in the real world our higher level students would be lost.Unable to survive.Unable to construct a simple past irregular sentence.Unable to use comparisons."Hes gooder me"...translated "Hes better than me"...maybe.Often incoherent.Usually confusing.Ultimately mind sapping.
Nor is the standard on the other side of the table any better.Most instructors wouldnt know a prefix or suffix from an annex.The most dire example lately was a 25 year old Aussie bimbo who complained students used words like "melancholy" which she had never heard of.Poor mono syllablic thing.
Then again our so-called Education Quality Control is an oxymoron with numerous spelling errors e.g "Fabruary" or "begining".The much vaunted Media Centre sends reports studded with drivel such as "the student made many non-verbal utterances".I defy anyone to define what that is....
Most of the so-called hierarchy have little in the way of English teaching background or the ability to teach.
As previously noted it took an offical complaint to get our boy wonder boss to literally clean up his act.A bit hypocritical of him to tell someone they are unprofessionally dressed when he himself smells like a cross between a gorillas armpit and an Iraqi sewer.
Lately small things have begun to rankle.Maybe its my conscience.Maybe guilt, in taking part knowingly in such a fraud and farce.Take yesterday,for example,I come to work and notice the maps of Canada,New Zealand and Australia have been taken down.Not company material.Part of our company title is inter-cultural exchange just a mockery...The walls are now as blank and empty as the people in charge.Clueless.
I need to find a better job not necessairly better paid but one where extra effort is appreciated and the raw materials such as textbooks have substance, are valid and have some educational worth and value.And I need to find one quickly....
mmm feel slightly better or bitter having written this down damn frustrating tho....

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