So, obviously, there are a lot of stories about really fucked-up English teachers, and most of the teachers I've known were a bit off in one way or the other.
There were a few guys I would (hesitantly) define as normal that I met in Saudi, but I didn't know these guys closely. I know the guys in my office were all a bit nutty in various ways. Married men "Dating" Filipina whores, secret potheads, borderline autistics, hermit types, guys who ate only one kind of food, etc.
But I often get reviews -- especially on Amazon UK -- from these allegedly completely-professional and normal teachers of TEFL. And there's a whole body of Oxford / Cambridge books that I guess are written by "normal" TEFL professionals. (I guess ...?)
But I've worked in like ten jobs in a half-dozen countries, and I've met so very very few people I'd call normal, in the way I'd call my dentist back in America normal, for example.
So I'm reaching out to my audience: who are the most normal teachers you know? Are you perhaps one yourself? Best "normal" teacher story wins some free books or $10 or something.
Warning: A lot of these teachers who THINK they're normal are usually the weirdest ones of all.
So I'll make a list of disqualifying traits:
DISQUALIFIERS FROM THE NORMALCY COMPETITION:
- no teachers with fake qualifications
- no alcohol or drug problems
- no gap year or obviously very short-term teachers
- no taking of anti-depressants / tranquilizers, even if medically prescribed
- no dating students, even if students are of legal age,
- no teachers who are primarily sex tourists / looking for foreign wife or husband
- no dating / marriage to a local / foreign man or woman if said man or woman is 15 or more years younger (or a former prostitute)
- no ranting (in class or otherwise) about politics, conspiracy theories, bizarre health beliefs
- reasonable personal hygiene / appearance
- no living alone in middle-age and never going out / living alone with cats (must have at least some level of normal human interaction / socialization)
- no working at places where they can get away with minimal-to-no actual teaching; no lecturing / reading to the class from the book / standing there while students write during the whole class
- no running from debts / alimony / failed marriages / failed businesses
I've even tried to contact these various "normal teacher" reviewers through Amazon and various other ways, but I've never had any kind of reply.
So, you know, don't be scared! Let's open a dialogue! Let's build a bridge between our cultures!