miércoles, marzo 29, 2006


I was a bit relieved not to be performing monkey for the advanced classes tonight. I didn't have the energy. Tonight, I had the beginners.

Beginner classes at this institute are full of cops. About a year ago, many English institutes in Santiago placed a bid to teach the police/military. These guys need to learn English because they are preparing to go to Haiti as part of a UN peacekeeping mission. The institute where I teach won the bid. This all sounds very glam.

It's not.

It's not because I have cops like Mark in my class. Real name - Marco. But he thinks that if I call him by an English name, he will feel the I'm-in-an-English-class vibe just that much more. He calls me Teachita - basically Spanglish way to be affectionate with a teacher. Other teachers sometimes hear him say that in the hall and ask me how I can let him call me that. It makes me laugh. This guy makes me laugh. One class he insisted that the phrase "to shed flesh" was another way to say "to lose weight." Argued it for about 10 minutes straight. The next day he brought in a textbook written by Chileans pretending to speak English with same definition.

Today I had him in a class where we were talking about businesses. I had these guys role-play trading with China. I overheard Mark saying he was going to deal strawberries.

Before giving it two second's thought I blurt out rather informatively, "Ya deal drugs!"

The class went hushed. Did she just say a cop was gonna deal drugs?

I started to giggle and everyone giggled along with me. Mark asked me something I can't remember about this. I cackled. Then I apologized. Luckily he is an easygoing guy. And with the things he says to me on a daily basis, I really ought to be putting together a case for sexual harassment. Still, I did feel a bit bad. I can see it doesn't sound like much of anything in writing... but really, it was the same tone I use to correct my ma's English. I never do that nicely.