Saturday, November 19, 2011

American Life: Part 2


What do you want to be in your future?

Everyone asks themselves this question at some point in their life...


Personally, I would like to become a pilot that transforms into an airplane...


or maybe a food critic...


But along the way there are many life lessons to be learned...

1) You can always count on friends to be supportive...


2) Respect your elders...


3) How to make letters with your body...

creepy


more creepy


4) And deductive reasoning...


It's also important to learn about holidays, like April Fools' Day...



and Easter...

Still trying to find the egg in this picture

I hope you learned some things about American culture.

Disclaimer:  Unless you are a human pretzel or relative of Mr. Fantastic please do not attempt to emulate the pictures above. Transforming the human body into letters of the alphabet is very dangerous. This blog, its authors, and blogger will not be held responsible for any injuries.  

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

My Dollar Store is Better Than Yours


The dollar store is a place where you can buy mediocre items for low prices. The feeling of saving money mixed with the risk of the crap you bought not working can be quite exhilarating. One of the most popular ¥100 shops in Japan is Daiso...


They have so many items that are essential to my daily life...

like face cream...


awards to inspire you to win finish...


chemicals to keep rodents away...


and keep away pesky domesticated animals...


beautiful decorative signs...


and delicious snacks...



While ¥100 is really about $1.30 the items in this store are priceless.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Scissor Salad


Today I was teaching school supplies...


They were actually doing quite well until we got to 'glue'. Instead of the actual word they would say 'blue'. Let's try it in a sentence...

My dad sold our horse to the blue factory. 

Some people sniff blue to get high. 


But the real trouble came when I tried to teach 'scissors'...


Daniel:  What's this?
Students:  はさみ!
Daniel:  In English, scissors.
Students:  Scissors!

Even though I was holding a picture flashcard I still saw many perplexed faces. Then one student was struck by genius....

Student:  Ah! I understand! Caesar salad!

I should explain that シザー (shizaa), the Katakana for 'scissors' is very close to シーザー (shiizaa) which means 'caesar', like the salad dressing dude.

Or maybe he was referring to these kitchen utensils...


Not sure. But if there are scissors in your salad someone is probably trying to kill you.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Inverview with a Foreigner


Today I had lunch with a 4th grade class. It was a very western meal of hamburger, broccoli and tomato soup with vegetables...


During lunch I had a very interesting conversation with a group of students. I will now attempt to recreate that conversation...

Daniel:  Hello
Student:  Hello

(awkward silence)

Student:  How old are you? (in English)
Daniel:  I'm 25 years old. (in Japanese)

The students discussed this for several minutes. How could I be 25 when I had previously told them I was 24? Eventually, they realized that foreigners must also have birthdays, but students still have many misconceptions about teachers...

1. Teachers don't age.
2. Teachers both live and work at school.
3. Teachers never leave the school.
4.  Teachers know the answer to everything.


Back to the conversation...


Student: Do you have a girlfriend?
Daniel: No I don't.
Student: Oh...ok. Do you have a boyfriend?
Daniel: No I don't

My kids are very accepting. So proud!

Student: How many times do you shave each day?
Daniel:  One.
Student: When?
Daniel: In the morning.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Baby on Board


During the 1980s, somewhere between pet rocks and parachute pants, the now famous "Baby on Board" sign made its debut...



It was not created to increase awareness of baby drivers, but rather to remind drivers that children ride in cars. So if a vehicle has this sign you should probably try to avoid a collision.

Not suprisingly, many parodies soon made their way onto windows...

"Baby I'm Bored"
"Elvis On Board"
"No Baby On Board Feel Free To Drive Into Me"

Many other similar signs can be found all over the world including Japan where I found this...

On some of these it says "I am safety driver" at the bottom. 


So why not create my own sign? One that would let Japanese drivers know they are amongst a foreigner. Some examples...

Yes. I realize they are a band, but they are still foreigners.

'Gaijin' is a slang term for foreigner. I must turn into this creature in public places. That would explain the staring.


And my favorite one that cuts straight to the point...

 Translated, it reads "Foreigner! Dangerous!"