Friday, March 14, 2008

"I was kidnapped by cops and driven to Laguna!"

Er. Well...

That was an exaggeration. Unlike Jun Lozada, I went willingly. My life was nowhere near being threatened. And their careers were on the line if they couldn't pass an English test. (Cue strident brass).

Another day on the job for your friendly neighborhood eigokyoushi.

There was no way we could cram two semesters of English Ed or one full reading of Strunk & White's The Elements of Style in the couple of hours they gave me to unlock the mysteries of English. I've been at it most of my life and I still can't say that book's closed.

So we did the next best thing. I gave em a crash course in "How to Beat a Written English Proficiency Test Without Frying Your Non-Native-English-Speaking Brain." Look for key words and phrases and make the proper associations without thinking too much about grammar.

They were appreciative. But I was dumb. I hadda open my mouth and say "These shortcuts can only be properly used if you practice. Our problem is time..." (music swells in the background) "Tell you what, let's schedule another class and I can come back with mock tests and handouts so you can have that practice you need before your big test day."

I'm a glutton for punishment.

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