Thursday, April 29, 2010

Best of X: Typical Teacher Types

When I was making the old website, I quickly realized that hand-drawing the cartoons and then getting them scanned was going to be both time-consuming and even expensive. (This was 2003, remember.)

So I quickly determined that using the English Teacher X icon and the Paintbrush program could allow me to make all kinds of cheerfully colorful and lovably amateurish graphics. I never spent more than about 10 minutes on one of these things, but I'm in general very pleased with the results. They're distinctive.

These typical teacher types cartoons have been controversial, because a certain couple of people I know thought I drew them specifically about them, noting specific resemblance to the hideous little homunculi pictured. But in fact they were drawn before I met these people, and without anybody in particular in mind. Archetypes, sterotypes, whatever, regrettably there is often plenty of truth in them.

You can click on them to enlarge them and I've provided captions as I realize some of them are nearly impossible to read, especially the Bloated Middle-Aged Whoremonger.

If you'd like to see them in their original posting -- at a nice size -- you can do so here.

AGE: Over 50
TRAINING: Lots, and lots of experience
HOBBIES: Complaining, Drinking

NATIONALITY: American or English
AGE: 20 - 30
HOBBIES: Shagging students, going to nightclubs

NATIONALITY: Probably American
AGE: 25 - 29
HOBBIES: Studying the local language, eating dinner with students

ENGLISH TEACHER X-FILES NUMBER FOUR: The Bloated Middle-Aged Alcoholic
AGE: 40 - 50
TRAINING: Maybe a cheap certificate course
FAVORITE ACTIVITY; Whores, alcohol

AGE: 28 - 37
HOBBIES: Preparing for lessons, giving training seminars, spreading rumors about other teacher's skills, using jargon

You know, of all these, it seems that the one I see the least, these days, is The Professional. (The only ones who act that way, these days, are the non-native teachers of English.)

Monday, April 26, 2010

Do Buy!

So I spent a week in the OTHER Las Vegas of the Middle East, with the same Russian girl that I went to Egypt with in February.

It's been getting some bad press recently for jailing people who kiss on the street, side by side with a reputation as a good place for sex tourism. But it's an interesting place to visit -- a lot of it looks like a futuristic city from a 70's science fiction movie.

Basically, it's about half mall, half slum. I imagine most of the planet will look like that within 15 years. Even the beaches are man-made and very-well landscaped, and the new subway runs on time. . . but you can't chew gum there.

So I was there for 5 days with the Russian girl that I know; we did all the touristy stuff like go to aquariums and the big malls, which are impressive even to a guy who doesn't much care for malls -- people of all religions and nationalities joined together in their love of buying a bunch of crap they don't need. We also saw the elaborately artificial recreations of traditional Arabic houses and stuff, and at my insistance wandered through the poor slummy areas where all the Indians and Pakistanis live who built all this stuff and keep the services running.

Also, I had two days there by myself. Alcohol is available only at hotel bars there, so I went to one; it was full of whores from Africa, China and Russia, most of whom were bloated and terribly unhealthy looking, with walking-dead eyes. The Africans were the nicest-looking -- I guess their complexion doesn't suffer as much from the late nights and the all the booze and cigarettes.

I'd already had sex with my Russian girlfriend twice that morning before she left, so I declined when one of the prettiest prostitute in the place (a Ghanese girl with corn-rowed hair) offered to spend all night with me for $150. I just wanted to relax and drink some beer for a few hours. (Most of you probably wouldn't have found a place full of bloated whores and equally bloated and rancid-looking whoremongering expats relaxing, but such places at least offer little pretension.)

I told the girl I wasn't going to take her home; I said I'd consider it the next day. (I mean, for $150, you want to be fresh, you know.) She sat with me and gazed adoringly for a couple hours anyway, saying I was the nicest guy in the place. We chit-chatted.

The story she told me wasn't especially terrifying; she wasn't stuffed in a box or facing a huge debt. She had a friend who worked in Dubai, who helped her arrange the visa, and she came. (Not much work in Ghana, even though she claimed to have a degree in business administration and had worked at her mother's shop that sold jewelry.) As with most whores I have known, when I asked her if she liked her job, she just kind of shrugged.

Then of course when she found out that I really WASN'T going to take her home, she wasnted me to pay her for her time. I gave her the equivalent of about $15, which I thought was generous in addition to the two vodka and cokes I'd bought her. She didn't agree.

I think I drank 5 pints of beer, total -- supposedly Heiniken -- and was home by 1.30am, which back in Vodkaberg would have been considered a VERY quiet night.
I hadn't felt that drunk when I went to bed -- no vomitting and no spins, certainly -- but when I woke up the next day I had a fucking HORRIFIC hangover, a pounding headache and nausea that I just couldn't shake.

I'm not sure why -- maybe the beer was bad quality or maybe the hooker from Ghana put a hex on me. Whichever, I couldn't shake it, and didn't do much that day other than go to the movies to see CLASH OF THE TITANS, which coincidentally is also about the death of legends.

Then I ate a tuna sandwich at Subway, and then come back to the hotel room and watched CSI:LOS ANGELES on cable and cleaned the keyboard on my computer with Q-Tips.

Thursday, April 08, 2010


So I spent the day (first day of the "weekend") riding my bike down the beachfront embankment listening to an audiobook version of Elmore Leonard's 1976 crime novel, SWAG.

It's a great book, but as it concerns two guys living the 70's swingin' single lifestyle in between bouts of armed robbery, I was struck especially by the prices of things mentioned in the book. An expensive good-looking hooker costs $50. A character's wealth ans style is established by referring to his $70 shoes. A character complains about an expensive gin and tonic in a hotel bar costing $2.

It got me thinking. When I first went to Russia in 2000, a beer in a bar, club or restaurant anywhere in the city cost less than $1. By the time I left last year, you would be very lucky to find one for less than $3 or $4. I haven't been to Prague in 5 years, but beer was inching up past $1 there, even though it was still great value for the money.

(Obviously beer isn't available in Saudi Arabia, except in the non-alcoholic variety, and a Holsten 33 cl non-alcoholic beer costs about 80 cents.)

So my question to you readers: is there still anywhere on the planet where you can get beer for less than $1? Have the glory days of cheap alcohol disappeared forever like the glory days of cheap apartments and foreign women who liked Americans?

(All the people who smoke are still in luck -- coffin nails are still cheap in developing countries.)

Yet another reason not to go abroad and teach English. I suppose that's one of the ways you know you're old, when you start bitching about how cheap stuff used to be. "I remember when you could get beer for 50 cents and a hooker in Thailand WITH an hour in a short time hotel for $50!" I'll yell that at my nephews next time I see them.

Thursday, April 01, 2010

The Alternative

So there were some students sitting at the little cafe near the student dormitory and they asked me to join them to eat chicken and rice with their hands.

I did so, and the conversation got around to sex. Of course the students are curious about that; although they've seen plenty of donkey-punch and ATM porn, like most modern teenagers, these kids for the most part haven't even TALKED to a woman.

I gave them some stories of eating 19-year-old girls assholes out, and jerking off on girl's faces in restrooms of nighclubs, you know, elements of a normal sex life, and they asked me if I'd ever tried a camel.

No, I admitted. Although a few of the women that I'd taken home from bars couldn't be described as angels, there were no camels amongst them.

They aaid that in fact there is a word for an old broken-down camel that's not good for anything except fucking anymore. I can't remember it. Arabic still sounds to me like an old person clearing their throat.

One of the boys offered to drive me out to the family camel barn and give one a try. I admitted that it had been a while, so I agreed.

The camel was indeed a sad sight, old and smelly and missing hair in patches here and there. In fact it could barely stand. But when they lifted its tail, I was introduced to a world of magic and wonder. I rubbed up an erection and inserted it into the mositest, most pleasant honey pot I've ever encountered. The camel's spasming nether regions quickly brought me to orgasm, and for once I didn't have to worry about pulling out or protection.

I tell you, this is 100% better than real women. The camel doesn't bug you, nor does it require a sushi dinner and a few martinis. It only wants a pat on the nose and a handful of straw. Man I'm glad I came to this country.