20 September 2009

The Furious Guide to Being Passive Aggressive in the LL Room

Or, "How To Be An Asshole So Overtly That No One Can Really Be Offended" (volume 1)
Or... "I had a really terrible week at work."

If you're a long-term reader, you may remember, my pièce de résistance "The Furious Guide to Being Passive Aggressive in a Japanese Office Environment", which gave instructions on the following leftist revolutionary activities:

- If a coworker leaves a stack of papers on your desk, hide it

- Abuse the laminating machine

- Blame your own bad English on your "dialect" (etc.)

I wrote a guide on being an ass of an ALT, which many of us certainly are, but many of my Japanese coworkers have expressed concern that I took the ethnocentric route and ignored the Japanese point of view, because, dammit, we're all human beings and human beings are basically evil, spiteful simian turd-throwers.

So, in my second volume, I will give advice for any team teacher unlucky enough to be forced into working with a lazy, stupid, badly-dressed punk of a gaikokujin. Sometimes, if they push you, you gotta shove back.

So let me present, the The Furious Guide to Being Passive Aggressive in the LL Room.

1. Talk about the ALT to the students in simple, understandable Japanese in front of the Japanese-speaking ALT.

Have you ever walked into a classroom, noticed an ALT chatting with some students, and announced in a loud voice "彼は外人だから英語がぺらぺらだね!" (He's a white, so that's why he's fluent in English!"). If you have, then you're probably the former principal at my school.

2. Got team teaching class? Mark some papers!

Your prefecture spends $40,000 a year to bring a foreign language teacher in to assist you in your classroom to enrich the classes for both you and your students.

But this is probably a good opportunity to get some of that pesky marking done. So while the ALT is up at the front of the class "assisting" you, you should stand at the back, completely ignore him or her, and get the real work done. Marking tests and quizzes.

(Alternative: still ignore the ALT, and give him or her these tests or quizzes to mark!)

3. Bring up the war with a nuance of blame (even if the ALT is not American).

There's absolutely no better environment than an international communication class to bring up the war. Not only bring it up, but avoid any association with your country and any aggression, while still demonizing the enemy. POWs? Huh? Unit 731? What's that? Seriously-- what is that? I've never heard of it. Should I know? ...Let's talk about Hiroshima instead.

4. What's his name? I think it's "ALT" or something.

It takes time -- and time is money, as the students inexplicably all know how to say in English -- to ask the foreigner it's name, and it probably wouldn't understand the question in the first place, so let's call it by it's job title. The ALT. No wait-- ALT-sensei to be polite. Well... ALT-san, anyway. And the ALT don't mind if you use it's job title to describe it while talking about it in front of it as though it wasn't sitting right there looking at you. It is an ALT after all. It's like calling a spade a spade, or a German Shepherd a German Shepherd.

If correctly used, this guide will ruin all international communication, effectively destroy the chance that the ALT will choose to recontract, and spread hideous lies about xenophobia in Japan the world over.

Disclaimer: Dear bosses, there is no Nishimura-sensei. If there was, I'm sure he would be very nice.


AzzidisRidden said...

I like your translation of 外人 as "white."

And seriously, did you really just write a guide for Japanese people about how to be passive-aggressive?
Maybe next time you can write one that teaches cats how to be apathetic.

Furious said...

lol Yes... this is true. It was mostly because it was my companion piece to my guide for passive aggressive ALTs.

I think the guide to active aggression for JTEs would be a bit too short, and might go something like this (corresponding to the post):


1. 外人は怖いよ。
2. ここに居たくないよ。
3. 外人は怖いよ。
4. こいつは誰だけ。

But, on the other hand, I'm just kidding. Most JTEs seem to actually be really nice people, even if they sometimes make mistakes.

Kocho-senseis on the other hand...

Furious said...

And Adrien, somehow I lost your comment! Sorry man. :(