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Snakes in a Guinness Brewery

The St. James's Gate Brewery, Dublin, Ireland
The St. James’s Gate Brewery, Dublin, Ireland

When a shipment of empty kegs sent from Texas arrived in Dublin yesterday, nobody expected it would turn up trying to undo all of St. Patrick’s hard work. Alas, no, it did not arrive denouncing Christianity in Ireland but it did arrive with a little friend: a snake.

Corn Snake -- se Georgia, USA

As the legend goes, St. Patrick famously got rid of all the snakes in Ireland but it turns out this young reptile had other ideas. It’s been identified as a juvenile corn snake and, although dehydrated and underweight, has been transferred to a vet in Bray for further care.

Corn snakes are relatively friendly snakes. Their docile nature and slow to bite attitude makes them popular pets in the US although exactly how this one managed a stowaway mission to the Emerald Isle remains a mystery.

Guess it brings a whole new meaning to ‘having a snakebite’.

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Typhoon Timewasters – Top 10 10s – 08/28

The MODIS instrument on board NASA's Terra sat...

With the day off school today to await the imminent arrival of Typhoon Bolaven, I’ve redubbed today’s post Typhoon Timewasters!

Happy Timewasting!

To help you while away your time indoors during the storm, we here at TKW have compiled a list of the best of the AllTime10s. With all videos coming in at under 3 minutes long, they’re the perfect way to waste at least 30 minutes and perhaps learn something that you never thought you needed to know.

1. Top 10 Most Useless Body Parts

Covering such uselessness as wisdom teeth, male nipples and why some people can wiggle their ears and I some people can’t.


2. Top 10 Everyday NASA Inventions

Did you know the substance used to make invisible braces was originally used by NASA to protect infrared detectors? No, me neither!


3. Top 10 Craziest Ice-Cream Flavors

Bacon? Not that weird. Fried Chicken Wings? A little weirder. Breast milk? Ummm…..ooookkkkk. Viagra? WTF?

For more, check out The Food Network’s list.


4. Top 10 Dumbest Criminals

Take the story of Krystian Bala, who’s 2003 book ‘Amok’ detailed a gristly murder of a Polish businessman. Noticing the eery similarities between the book’s plot and a murder from 2000 of the same nature, Chief Inspector Jack Wroblewski arrested Bala who’s currently serving 25 years for the murder. In my writing class I was always taught to write what you know but…well….


5. Top 10 Bizarre Business Ideas That Made Millions

From toilet training kits for your cat to a website that faciliates peole in relationships to have affairs to…well, number three on the list…this list just goes to show, there’s no such thing as a stupid idea an idea that can’t make money.


6. Top 10 Illegal Baby Names

I once had a co-teacher name one of my students Lucifer. He was the sweetest kid in the world and was only maybe 7 years old when he joined my class but still, I couldn’t help scrunching up my face everytime I had to say or write his name. It’s worth noting, since some of the older kids get to give themselves an English name I’ve had kids named ‘Pencil’, ‘Lightnening’, ‘Apple’, ‘ChocoPie’, ‘Carrot’ who changed her name to ‘Ninja’, the list goes on. The only time I’ve ever refused to let a kid name himself something was when one of my worst student tried to change his name to ‘Smart’, all the other kids complained it was a lie and he got outvoted.


7. Top 10 Ill-Advised Publicity Stunts

From the US Department of Defence causing widespread public panic and Snapple’s failed world record attempt which resulted in kiwi-strawberry liquid flooding the streets of Manhattan, this list is one of my


8. Top 10 Accidental Discoveries

Obviously Viagra is on the list but chocolate chip cookies and Play-Doh? Proving some accidents are totally awesome.


9. Top 10 Suprising Facts About Google

Google have their own dinosaur! Their own DINO-SAUR!! His name is Stan. Stan the Dinosaur.


10. Top 10 Things That Make You A 90’s Kid

(Sorry, Canadian One, but this ME!!! This is you….) Tamagotchis, Power Rangers and ‘In West Philadelphia born and raised….’


There are literally hundreds more on their channel so it was hard to just list 10…this may be renamed Part One at some point. Notable mentions: Top 10 Unusual Mating Rituals, Top 10 Greatest Con Artists and Top 10 Lesser Known Natural Wonders.

Still got time to waste? For more Timewasters, check out:

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‘I’M NOT OK!!!’ – Quote Friday 08/24

The best of this week’s quotes from my elementary students in South Korea (and some thrown in from friends too)

Before I launch into this week’s Quote Friday, I just wanna point out an awesome website / wedding invitation that was sent to me (to look at, not to go to the wedding….just to be clear). It didn’t make it into this week’s timewasters but IT. IS. AWESOME. And may will make you cry…at your desk…in front of other people…cos it’s just so damn cute. Ketchup World, meet Jess and Russ.

Moving on.

Between job hunting, going for interviews and stalking the mailman waiting on a letter from Canada regarding my visa, I feel like I’ve not had a lot of time this week and am failing to believe that it is actually Friday today.


Me, reading from the book: ‘What day is it today?’

Kid: ‘Tuesday.’

Me: ‘No, it’s Thursday.’

Kid: ‘It’s Tuesday.’

Kid next to her nods.

Me: ‘It’s not. It’s Thursday. Isn’t it? Is it? Wait, lemme check.’

Google confirmed, yes, yes it was Thursday. Kids still looked skeptical though.

This week also marked the last week of random arty/science classes and as such, I have spend the week being quite arty.

Not on purpose, mind you. I got forced into teaching a ‘Clay Cooking Class’ to a bunch of 7 year olds who spoke no, and I mean NO, English. Though thankfully they all understood not to eat the clay unlike those 7 year olds I had in science who tried to lick a battery.

God, kids are stupid.

Moving on.

Here is some of the arty crap I got to make this week:

Bibimbap, a traditional Korean dish

Meanwhile, The Canadian One and I had to do an airport run to pick up some newbies.

I made a sign.

He made a sign.

And although you may think his was better, he did look like ‘a sixteen year old waiting for Justin Bieber’ (- his words, not mine) and I didn’t.


I often wonder exactly what The Canadian One does all day at work. Luckily, his 6 year old kindergarteners write about it.

Women’s clothing….?


Boy: ‘Teacher, teacher, gaaaaame!! Let’s play Dancing Queen!!’

And with that he leaps from his seat into the middle of the classroom and starts disco dancing.


From The Canadian One:

The Canadian One: ‘Are you sure you’re a book helper?’ (to a kid handing out books, a job for kids dubbed ‘Book Helpers’)

6 year old kid: ‘Yes, trust me.’


After a listening task, I stop the CD.

Me: “Is everyone OK? Do we need to listen to it one more time?’

Class: ‘It’s ok. No.’

One kid: ‘I’M NOT OK!!!’


Splitting the class up for a game:

Me: “Kevin, you’re on Calvin’s team. Kitty, you’re with Lucas.’

Lucas: ‘YESSSS!!’

I look at him.

Lucas: ‘Kevin is not smart.’


The Canadian One: ‘Why is there bread in the recycling?’

Me: ‘Ohhhhh, yeah, I sometimes get confused in the mornings and I had the bread and the plastic thingy and I…I just put it all in the recycling.’

He stares at me.

Me: ‘I also put my pen in my lunch box….I’m not so good with the morning time.’


The Canadian One, after I explain why I need help downloading something: ‘You need a life coach.’


For more Quote Friday’s, check out:

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Tuesday Timewasters – 08/21

A funny, random pictures edition featuring a round-up of my favourite SomeEcards part 3! (Parts 1 and part 2 are here!)

Happy Timewasting!

On Facebook chat:

Me: ‘I logged onto the internet to write Timewasters but got distracted. Now I dunno what to write about.’

Pomegranate: ‘Write about what distracted you.’

Me: ‘I don’t think Facebook and reading about Tony Scott is Timewaster worthy.’

My favorite Facebookness:


Sent by The Canadian One:


Ricky makes a point:


From the bar menu on Friday night:

Interesting beer bottle…


Found while reading the news on my iPhone recently. As my mother would say….’WOT???’


And finally, some Ecards to keep you laughing:

Still got time to waste? For more Timewasters, check out:

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Half A Year Of Ketchup

It’s been six months today that I started this website full of quotes, timewasters, ramblings and musings. Here’s a round-up of some of the top items on the site from the beginning.

To kick us off:

People Google the WEIRDEST stuff

Why are tadpoles in my toilet

One eyed jack squirts ketcup from eye

irish people using ketchup

how to break a coffee maker

phone scam vibrator

How to pay strippers in Canada

And along the same lines:

What part of Canada do strippers earn more money

A whole plethora of people Googled Women asking men to marry them on February 29th

Why your birthday is worth a day off school

Do Canadians drink coffee with ketchup? (DO THEY?!!)

How to stop timewasters and distractions (If they ended up here, they clearly didn’t achieve their original mission)

How do you spell crocodile pick up line

Kitten zombies

Picture of syringe crane

And finally:

Two of my friends’ FULL names were Googled also


Number 2: Timewasters 06/05

Top Five Timewasters

1. ‘Dear God, So who made the dinosaurs…’

2. Timewasters 04/05 and Part 2: 06/05

3. Tuesday Timewasters: The Viral Edition 06/19

4. Tuesday Timewasters 06/26

5. Tuesday Timewasters 03/13


Number 3: ‘Where’s the outcry? WHERE?!’

Top Posts

1. ‘I just forked my hair.’

2. ‘You know, girls can ask guys to marry them on February 29th.’

3. Where’s the outcry? WHERE?!

4. ‘I’ve taken up origami…’

5. ‘People are more into buffet religion nowadays.’


Top Quotes (excluding the Wall of Quotes)

1. ‘I did my homework with a paintbrush.’

2. ‘It’s so bling bling.’

3. ‘Relax!!!’

4. Top 11 Quotes from the Wall

5. ‘She’s a ninja.’


Number 1: Pork Burgers

Top Cookin’ in Korea

 1. Pork Burgers / Pork Meatballs / The BEST 4-Ingredient Tomato Sauce EVER

2. Oh-So-Simple Banana Bread

3. Cherry Muffins with Coconut Topping

4. Lucy’s Mum’s Chili Con Carne

5. The Om Nom Nomelette

comedy entertainment funny humor internet Korea South Korea timewasters

Half A Year Of Ketchup

It’s been six months today that I started this website full of quotes, timewasters, ramblings and musings. Here’s a round-up of some of the top items on the site from the beginning.

To kick us off:

People Google the WEIRDEST stuff

Why are tadpoles in my toilet

One eyed jack squirts ketcup from eye

irish people using ketchup

how to break a coffee maker

phone scam vibrator

How to pay strippers in Canada

And along the same lines:

What part of Canada do strippers earn more money

A whole plethora of people Googled Women asking men to marry them on February 29th

Why your birthday is worth a day off school

Do Canadians drink coffee with ketchup? (DO THEY?!!)

How to stop timewasters and distractions (If they ended up here, they clearly didn’t achieve their original mission)

How do you spell crocodile pick up line

Kitten zombies

Picture of syringe crane

And finally:

Two of my friends’ FULL names were Googled also


Number 2: Timewasters 06/05

Top Five Timewasters

1. ‘Dear God, So who made the dinosaurs…’

2. Timewasters 04/05 and Part 2: 06/05

3. Tuesday Timewasters: The Viral Edition 06/19

4. Tuesday Timewasters 06/26

5. Tuesday Timewasters 03/13


Number 3: ‘Where’s the outcry? WHERE?!’

Top Posts

1. ‘I just forked my hair.’

2. ‘You know, girls can ask guys to marry them on February 29th.’

3. Where’s the outcry? WHERE?!

4. ‘I’ve taken up origami…’

5. ‘People are more into buffet religion nowadays.’


Top Quotes (excluding the Wall of Quotes)

1. ‘I did my homework with a paintbrush.’

2. ‘It’s so bling bling.’

3. ‘Relax!!!’

4. Top 11 Quotes from the Wall

5. ‘She’s a ninja.’


Number 1: Pork Burgers

Top Cookin’ in Korea

 1. Pork Burgers / Pork Meatballs / The BEST 4-Ingredient Tomato Sauce EVER

2. Oh-So-Simple Banana Bread

3. Cherry Muffins with Coconut Topping

4. Lucy’s Mum’s Chili Con Carne

5. The Om Nom Nomelette

comedy funny humor kids Korea quotes South Korea

‘Ah, do you live Gangnam Style?’ – Quote Friday 08/17

The best of this week’s quotes from my life in South Korea 

Around three weeks ago, I was informed that the English teaching program at my school would no longer be continuing and I would have to search for a new job. Now, searching for a job is fine. I’ve job hunted lots of times in my life. I’ve job hunted when I had a job just to see if there was anything better out there. I’ve job hunted in Ireland, in England, in various other European countries but nothing, nothing, compares to job hunting in Korea. Nothing.

What’s important here isn’t qualifications. It’s isn’t experience, references or personality. It’s are you pretty and are you white, and mostly, are you male?

Questions I’ve been asked by recruiters:

Recruiter: ‘Are you a vegetarian? It’s very important to the school that you’re not a vegetarian.’


Recruiter: ‘Are you religious? They like Christians.’


Recruiter: ‘Do you have lots of friends?’


Phone rings once. I pick it up. It cuts off.

I get a text: ‘Call me for interview.’

I head to the desk to get a pen and paper to call the number back and write down any information the caller gives me.

Phone rings again.

‘Hello. I message you. You get my message?’

Me: ‘Yes, just now. I….’

‘Do you have Kakao talk? I only talk on Kakao talk.’

Me: ‘Ummm, well, yes but I don’t use it. Can’t we just talk on the phone? Like we are now. On the phone.’

‘Why you no use Kakao talk?’

Me: ‘I usually just talk to people on the phone. We can’t do that?’

‘No, we will communicate by email.’

And then he hung up. He’s since emailed me three time, called me four times and text me twice. He’s been flagged on my phone as ‘Crazy Person’.


I turn up to a job interview at a ubiquitous looking glass building.

Recruiter: ‘This is the 3rd largest church in Korea.’

Me: ‘It’s…what?!’


Recruiter: ‘Oh, I see you are Irish. I have Irish friends. When I go drinking with them, I always wake up and think f**k!!…Do you drink?’


Me: ‘I would like a job in Seoul.’

‘I have a job in Suwon.’

Me: ‘Suwon is not in Seoul.’

‘Suwon is in Seoul.’

Me: ‘No, it’s not. It’s far from Seoul.’

‘Suwon IS in Seoul.’ (Note: Suwon is NOT in Seoul)

Me ‘No, it’s too far.’

‘You can get to Seoul easily by train or subway. It’s very quick. It’s in Seoul.’

‘It’s not in Seoul…I lived in Cheonan. I know where Suwon is!’


Her: ‘I will call you back.’


‘You have an apartment.’

Me: ‘Yes.’

‘You will move.’

Me: ‘No, I don’t want to. I want to stay in my apartment. It’s my apartment.’

‘You don’t want to move?’

Me: ‘No. I live in the apartment. I don’t want to move.’

‘Hmmmmm, but if you move you will be 2 minutes from school. Now you are 30 minutes.’

Me: ‘That’s ok.’

Loooooong pause like I’d just said the sky was green and it was about to rain kittens.


Trying to convince me to go to Cheonan, a 90 min journey south, to work.

Him: ‘Cheonan is not that far away.’

Me: ‘Yes it is. It’s a bus ride. A long bus ride. And I’d have to be with the kids 9 til 9.’

Him: ‘You will have Korean teacher.’

Me: ‘That’s not a help. It’s too far.’

Him: ‘It is short. Short bus journey. And then we will pick you up at the train station.’

Me: ‘I lived in Cheonan. I know where it is.’

Him: ‘You….you lived in Cheonan? Before?’

Me: ‘Yes, for two years.’


Him: ‘You don’t want to go to Cheonan?’

Me: ‘No, no I do not.’


And finally, asked during an interview when the interviewer noticed I live in Gangnam, an affluent area of Seoul’s elite (except I live in the part that’s not rich and elite and is full of meat restaurants and hookers):

‘Ah, do you live Gangnam style?!!’

Referring to this video, with it’s addictive beats and disco style, it’s been played constantly over here:

Now, while I don’t actually live ‘Gangnam-Style’, regular readers will notice the Duck Boats make an appearance in the video, as well as the merry-go-round from my Cherry Blossom Date.


This week, The Canadian One and I ventured to see Snowpatrol.

Mam: ‘I dunno why you like Snowpatrol.’

Me: ‘They’re Irish!’

Mam: ‘So is Jedward!!!’


Me: ‘I think I’ll have some peanut butter.’

The Canadian One: ‘We don’t have any peanut butter.’

Me: ‘I saw some in the fridge.’

The Canadian One: ‘Oh, that’s empty.’

Me: ‘Then why’s it in the fridge?’

The Canadian One: ‘To make the fridge look less empty.’


For more Quote Friday’s, check out:

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Tuesday Timewasters – 08/14

I’m 28 years old so naturally a lot of my friends are currently popping out babies. Or their wives are. Or their girlfriends. Or their sisters / sisters-in-law / that girl their brother met at a club once and knocked up. Now, while its nice that my friends all have cute tiny humans in their lives and given that I live so far away, I do enjoy seeing a photo or two of them every so often.

Note: A photo OR two. Or three.

Not ten.

Not twenty.

Not entire albums dedicated to the tiny human doing nothing interesting but sitting there…and around picture 47, it’s wearing a hat. Oh my God, it’s wearing a hat. Let’s start a new album.



Now, don’t get me wrong, I do like seeing pictures of babies but somewhere between picture 24 of baby sitting and picture 26 of baby sitting-but-leaning-slightly-to-the-left, I grow bored.

Cute pictures of baby covered in food? Ok.

Nineteen pictures of baby covered in food from every angle like a crazed paparazzi? No. Just…No.

Baby smiling? Yes. Twenty-eight photos leading up to baby smiling where baby does NOTHING? No.

Of course, you can’t write to your friends and tell them 10 photos of their baby is probably enough for one day, and so enter Unbaby.Me.

A GENIUS extension for Crome which takes the baby right outta your Facebook newsfeed and replaces it with something far cooler. Like cars or dogs or kites if you’re into that kinda thing.

The best thing about this extension is it’s fully customizable. Get rid of cats, replace them with pictures of George Clooney. Get rid of pictures of your friend’s new car, replace them with pictures of snow. Far more interesting.

By changing the keywords the extension is searching your newsfeed page for, you can pretty much rid your newsfeed of anything cute / annoying / pointless /cats with quotes…WHY are there so many cats with quotes??! You can also change the websites the program gets its replacement images from making your newsfeed a much happier place to be.

Of course, once I have my own tiny human, I shall make albums upon albums upon albums of it doing absolutely nothing…and when that time comes, you’ll all be happy I wrote about this invention and you’ll with thank me and send me flowers.


In other, unrelated news but equally worth timewasting upon:

1. Did you know the United States makes up countries? MAKES UP COUNTRIES. Countries such as ‘The People’s Republic of Pineland’, ‘Attica’ and ‘Atropia’. No, seriously.

2. Chinese subtitles for the bootlegged DVD of the The Avengers are just AWESOME.

Suggestions for The Hulk sequel titles don’t go over too well with it’s main star

And finally:

SPHERO. A robot ball you control with your iPhone or iPad. Needless to say, it’s become imperative that I own this device as soon as possible.

Here’s Sphero being shot with a shotgun:

And here’s a slightly longer review for those who have time and are as obsessed as me:

Still got time to waste? For more Timewasters, check out:

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‘BUT I GO TO THE SEA!!’ – Quote Friday – 08/10

The best of this week’s quotes from my elementary students in South Korea (and some thrown in from friends too)

Yesterday was The Canadian One’s birthday and on Tuesday, I taught an Art Class in which we made ostriches.

Me: ‘I made you something at school for your birthday.’

Him: ‘Is it an ostrich?’

Me: ‘…No.’

Him: ‘It’s an ostrich, isn’t it?’

Me: ‘…No.’

Him: ‘You made me an ostrich, didn’t you?’

Me: ‘I did not make you an ostrich.’


Him: ‘It’s an ostrich, isn’t it?’


An Ostrich: Not made by me but by a seven year old


On Wednesday:

Me: ‘We made cats!’

Him: ‘Did you make me a catrich?’ (cat + ostrich)

Me: ‘Yes, yes I made you a catrich….tomorrow frog….oh wait….I was trying to combine frog and dog….but it’s already a word.


I did, however, make him a cake.

What kinda cake do you make a diabetic for his birthday? A Cheese Cake!


Stupid Moment of the Week:

Me, after drinking two glasses of milk: ‘I feel like a cow. Oh wait, cows don’t drink milk. Nevermind.’


Me: ‘How are you?’

Kid: ‘Me?’

Me: ‘Yes.’

Kid: ‘Now?’

Me: ‘Yes.’

Kid: ‘I’m everything.’


Turns out I say ‘Ok, so…’ A LOT.

I stand in front of the class and open my book.

Entire class: ‘Ok, soooooooo…’


Me: ‘There is one flower.’

Grade Ones: ‘There is one flower.’

Me: ‘There is one cloud.’

Grade Ones: ‘There is one flower.’

Me: ‘No, there is one cloud.’

Grade Ones: ‘There is one flowd.’

Me: ‘CLOUD!’

Grade Ones: ‘Cloud.’

Me: ‘There is one cloud.’

Grade Ones: ‘There is one flower.’

Me: ‘I give up.’


Kid: ‘Me minus one sticker!’

Me: ‘You have no homework!’



Kid 1: ‘I lost my homework book CD.’

Kid 2: ‘I lost my homework book but I have the homework book CD.’

Me: ‘Well, then together you can do homework!’


Calling attendance:

Me: ‘Tony?’

Kid: ‘No.’

Me: ‘Where’s Tony?’

Kid: ‘Tony is…his home….’

Kid does a little dance.

Kid 2: ‘At the disco? His home is disco?’


From Kindergarten class submitted by April Lynn Amador:

Kid: ‘Um teacher? Sometimes I have a fart when I do the study.’


For more Quote Friday’s, check out:

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Tuesday Timewasters – 08/07

Happy Timewasting!

Here are some interesting pictures I’ve meandered upon this week in my trawling of the world-wide web. Actually, I’ve not done much meandering this week as I was on vacation last week and am teaching summer camp this week. Less time online means less time to timewaste which means less time to find timewasters for all you lovely people. That and I’ve spent an extraordinary amount of time stalking that spaceship that landed on Mars, have led to this being a short one, ohhhh but a good one this week!

Anyway, onto the pictures:

I can’t remember where I found this but if it’s your picture, email me and I’ll link you, I LOVE it!

This was featured on a previous Timewasters but I still can’t find Wall-E so you give it a go

Church Wars!

I saw this:

Then later saw this:

Uh huh!

Still got time to waste? For more Timewasters, check out:

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I love sleeping. Period.

LOVE it!

In fact, as I write this, it’s 15:05 on a Sunday and I have just gotten out of bed.

I have it on good authority that when I sleep, I look like this:

When The Canadian One and I started dating, he asked me what my favorite hobby was and I replied with ‘napping’. Now that we live together, while he’s away at weekends with his band, I spend the majority of my Saturday (and Sunday) in my pajamas alternating between writing, making coffee, watching the coffee machine to ensure it’s not breaking in front of my eyes, napping and watching TV.

When I was growing up, the idea of sleeping all day did not sit well with my very active mother. She came up with a plethora of unusual ways to wake my brother and I up: vacuuming outside our rooms, vacuuming inside our rooms, stealing all of the bedcovers, playing really loud music (a favorite of hers), bringing us breakfast…

One time, while I was visiting home during the summer, I was soundly sleeping in the afternoon when my mother burst into my room screaming:


Accustomed to my mother’s dramatic ways of waking her children up, I naturally rolled over, pulling the cover over my head and replied with, ‘OK.’

She yanked the covers off me with ‘No, SERIOUSLY!! The house is ON FIRE!! GET UP!! GET OUT OF THE HOUSE!!’

I relented and got up, werily, and walked out of my bedroom to find the hallway full of smoke. It was at this point that I realised perhaps my mother was not lying to me…and if she was, this was a really elaborate hoax, even for her.

After, between us, concluding the smoke was coming from the small attic area on the same level as us, that opening the door to that attic area was not what any of my elementary school fire-safety courses had taught me and that calling the firefighters was a better option, my mother ordered me into the front garden for safety.

An order I obeyed.


For all of two minutes.

With the fire not seeming to spread and the smoke contained to the 2nd floor of the house, I returned inside to the downstairs bathroom to put in my contact lenses…and brush my hair. What? Don’t judge me. Firefighters were on their way to my house. Real life, bonefide firefighters.

‘GET OUT OF THE HOUSE!!’ my mother screamed from the hallway where she was weilding a cell-phone and trying to survey the door leading to the fire.

Now able to see properly and with defluffied hair, I returned to the grassy area of the garden only to once again, moments later, find myself venturing back inside. I quickly located the cat and my laptop in the living room and returned to the grassy area for the last time. Although I’m assuming had the firefighters not turned up at that very moment and ordered both my mother and I to vacate the house, I would have thought of more items to rescue.

I watched for twenty minutes while firefighters went in and out of the house from my spot on the grass. With a firetruck, firefighters and us living in a small suburb, neighbors had started to peer out of their windows and appear in their driveways in a bid to assess what was happening on their street. (Read: Get gossip for the people in the pub later)

The firefighters exited the house and told us it was safe to reenter. Apparentaly our dryer had overheated, setting fire to some fluff in it and causing all of the smoke. Luckily, the dryer has also put OUT the fire just prior to the firefighters arrival and as such, they really didn’t have much to do. Nothing was burnt. There was no evidence of a fire being present and if not for all the smoke and the fact that the house was sporting a distinct ‘I’ve just been on fire’ aroma, no one would ever have thought the fire even existed.

Myself, my mother and my laptop all returned to the safety of our smoky abode which reeked of burnt rubber for days. The cat had long since run off clearly adhering to my mother’s ‘get away from the house’ warnings better than I did.

The dryer spent the rest of the summer in the garden proving it wasn’t a danger to the house and after three months of no fire incidents it was returned to it’s spot in the attic where it still remains to this day.

‘Where there’s smoke, there’s fire’

No, no there is not.

Sometimes there is just smoke.

…and also if your mother runs into your room screaming ‘The house is on fire!’ she may not be just trying to stop you from lying around in bed all day. The house may actually be on fire.

For more posts, check out:

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‘I’m sorry I flicked s**t at you.’ – Quote Friday – 08/03

Since I’ve been off school this week there are no new quotes from students so ya’ll will have to wait another seven days to see what ridiculous things my students say in class. To tide you over though, here are some of the best quotes from The Shamrock and The Canadian One do Busan.

Having just arrived in Busan:

Me: ‘You think 11:15 is too early to start drinking?’

Him, almost offended by the question: ‘No!!’

Me: ‘And this is why I love you!’

A minute later we were in an Irish bar having these for breakfast:


Me: ‘Why can’t you get married tomorrow?’ – I confused ‘get messed up’ with ‘get married’.


Guy on train: ‘How old are you?’

Me: ’28.’

Guy: ‘Really? You could be a high school student!’

Me: ‘YAY!!’

The Canadian One stares, dubiously, raising his eyebrows.


Him: ‘I’m sorry I flicked shit at you. I’ll pay for dinner.’ – Having just flicked poop on me with his foot after he stepped in it on the beach. He thought it was a bug on his foot and flicked it towards me. I later got dinner, drinks and a bracelet out of it.


On the way into Busan Train Station:

Him: ‘I gotta pee. ‘

Me: ‘ME TOO!!’

Him: ‘I have an excuse. I drank five beers!’

Me: ‘I drank two!’

Him: ‘You drank one and a half.’

Me: ‘No, I drank that giant one. That counts as one and a half all by itself.’

Him: ‘That was a normal one. It was just in a taller glass so it looked bigger.’

Me: ‘Like how you shave and it looks bigger?’


At home, me playing fast and loose with The Canadian One’s diabetes:

Me: ‘Can you pass me the sugar? It’s in the thingy at the end.’

Him: ‘It says fake sugar on it.’

Me: ‘It’s real sugar. It’s just labelled wrong……OH YEAH, don’t use the sugar in the ‘fake sugar’ bottle…it’s real sugar. I forgot to tell you that.’


While talking about a girl The Canadian One previously lived with:

Me: ‘I find it weird that you had this whole life before me. It’s like I missed a season of a TV show.’


For more Quote Friday’s, check out:

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Tuesday Timewasters – When Movies Get Lego’d – 07/31

Soon to be a movie? Fingers crossed.

Following on from last Tuesday’s guess the movie posters and our Pixar Lego’d post, we bring you yet another movie guessing game to while away your Tuesday afternoon. Thanks to Alex Eylar, aka ICanLegoThat, his brilliant imagination and expansive Lego collection comes When Movies Get Lego’d.

Can YOU guess them all? Answers in next week’s Tuesday Timewasters.

Happy Timewasting!

And finally, my other favorite short-lived, now-cancelled TV show:

Still got time to waste? For more Timewasters, check out:

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The best of this week’s quotes from my elementary students in South Korea (and some thrown in from friends too)

And so the week wraps up with the start of my vacation week and a month of uncertainty to follow. You see, yesterday, my company announced that my school no longer wishes to partake in the after-school English programme anymore thus rendering both my job and my co-teacher’s job obsolete…aka, we were let go. Or at least we will be come August 31st.

‘I am supposed to tell you after vacation but I thought I would tell you before so you can prepare.’ – My manager trying to give me the silver lining of ‘in a month you’ll have no job and unless you find one, you may not have a visa to stay in the country either…oh and you’ll also have no health insurance…’

In other, school related matter, this has been the first week of the ‘summer schedule’, whereby my students are on vacation from normal school and come to me in the daytime instead. Half my students are missing / away in a far flung, much more interesting land, and the classes are starting a whole four hours earlier than usual. Any takers on what the most complained about thing has been this week?

Yep, kids moaning that they’re in class at 10am on a vacation day and that it’s hot outside. Very very hot outside.

Oh and I now teach Science and Art as a special ‘summer class’ for grades 1-3…who speak absolutely zero English…and the classes are 75 minutes long…Here’s a sample of what we made this week:

Pop-Up Binoculars…We went outside and looked at bugs
A magnet tree
A Syringe Crane…or something you’d see on the set of Breaking Bad I would imagine
I have no idea what this is! It said ‘A Flute’ but all I heard was ‘Annoying object that will require you to need an Aspirin after the kids make it’

As usual, never to be outdone, my students in their art class just prior to mine, made these:

Moving on!

This week also deal with the aftermath of Mosquito Attack 2012:

Me on Day Two following Mosquito Attack 2012

My students regarding the GIANT blotches all over my legs:

Kid, staring at my legs: ‘Teacher….um….cry?’


Kid: ‘Teacher, why?!!’

Me: ‘Mosquitoes.’


Me: ‘No no, there was more than one!’


I scratch my leg in class.



Kid, giving advice on how to kill a mosquito: ‘Teacher, baseball bat and hit.’


A kid is lying on a desk.

Me: ‘Andrew, you can’t sleep on the desk in class.’

Kid: ‘I’m not sleeping on the desk. I’m sleeping on my hand.’


Me, reading the sentence in the book: ‘It is fun to tickle the little baby.’

Kid: ‘PICKLE???!!’


The Web-Designing Singer regarding me saying ‘Dor-ee-toes’ as oppose to ‘Dor-ee-do’: ‘The British always like to put T into things, it’s like they get halfway through a word and think ouuu let’s stop for some T, shall we?’


Next week there’ll be no Quote Friday as I’m on a week off school but it’ll be back August 10th. In the meantime, feel free to check out past Quote Friday’s here:

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Pixar’s Storytelling Rules get LEGO’d!

Anyone recall about a year ago when then-Pixar story artist Emma Coats tweeted a series of ‘Pixar Storytelling Rules’ over the course of six weeks or so?

No? No one?

Well, luckily for you, the helpful people at The Pixar Touch put all 22 of them together for your reading pleasure.

BUT in case, you don’t want to read all the rules in a boring black-text-on-white-background format, Alex Eylar’s got you covered. Alex Eylar, aka ICanLegoThat, is a Lego Master in my opinion (and shall be the star of an upcoming Tuesday Timewasters) and his illustrations of Emma Coats’ rules only make them even more appealing to follow.

Whether you’re a hopeful writer, a worldly storyteller, a blossoming filmmaker or none of the above, these are words to aspire and inspire. Enjoy.

For more posts, check out:

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Tuesday Timewasters – The Movies / Books / TV Edition – 07/24

Some entertainment industry themed Tuesday Timewasters for this sunny day!

Happy Timewasting!

From brain of Stephen Wildish: Guess the movie

Did you get them all?! I certainly didn’t! I’m still missing a few but I’m working on it. There are plenty more timewasting posters for you to enjoy on his site. I urge you to check it out.

Next up, moving away from movies and into books: Some inspirational words from the books of Dr. Seuss.

And finally, last but not least, a closing word from The Muppets.

Still got time to waste? For more Timewasters, check out:

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‘Give me your coffee’ – Quote Friday 07/20

The best of this week’s quotes from my elementary students in South Korea (and some thrown in from friends too)

It’s my birthday today!!

I just wanted to point that out before we begin.


Me: ‘You’re like a domesticated puppy.’

The Canadian One: ‘I’m like a half domesticated puppy that still pees on the floor sometimes.’

Me: ‘Can I put that on my blog?’

The Canadian One: ‘Not out of context!’

Context: I was sitting on the floor of the kitchen with a teapot cosy on my head while he was cleaning the top of the fridge.

No, I didn’t think the context would help either!

To be fair, after this happened, he said this about me:

The Canadian One: ‘I think of living with her the same way I do living with a puppy, one day I’m gonna come home and she will have broken something I really like.’

A mere seconds later I saved his life. Saved. His. Life. Who’s the puppy NOW?!

Moving on.


Kid: ‘Teacher, ummmm, tomorrow happy birthday…ummmm, do you like pencil?’

Birthday Cupcakes (neither made by nor eaten by me!)

Me: ‘Yes! I love pencils!’

Kid: ‘And sticker?’

Me: ‘Yes, I love stickers.’

Kid: ‘Teacher, you Korean yes?’

Me: ‘No.’

Kid: ‘Ummmmm, happy birthday card korean me…you no?’

Me: ‘Korean teacher can tell me.’

Kid: ‘OK!!’

She runs away smiling.


Describing a picture:

Kid: ‘He is scared because his bride’s face is ugly.’

Kid 2: ‘She is sad because she doesn’t love bridegroom.’


Kid points to candy on my desk.

Kid 1: ‘Candy!’

Me: ‘The candy is for grade six.’

Kid: ‘I’m great! Kitty’s great!!’ (pointing at her friend)

Me: ‘No no, GRADE six. Not great.’

Kid: ‘Kevin is grade six!’ (pointing at another boy sitting behind her)

Kevin looks up at me.

Kevin: ‘Yes, teacher, give me your coffee.’


A kid has no pencil.

Me: ‘If someone gives him a pencil, I’ll give you a sticker.’

Kid, being mean to all the other students: ‘No, no, I have a pencil.’


Someone hits my door during a lesson. I open the door to find kids scattering and one boy standing, staring at me like a deer in headlights.

Me: ‘Who hit my door?!’

Kid: ‘I don’t know…I don’t know…’

I stare at him.

Kid: ‘I don’t know…’

Me: ‘Come here.’

Kid: ‘It was Tony!!’


Kid talking to me randomly about food.

Kid: ‘Oh teacher, I see, the jungle man say eat this and the people eat and then bleeeeeh…’

Me: ‘What did they eat?’

Kid: ‘Thin white ants and iguanas.’

Me: ‘Ewwww…’


Me: ‘It’s big and brown. It has a big head and four legs.’

Two kids put their hands up.

Kid 1: ‘It’s a bear!!!’



Kid: ‘Oh teacher, do you know sweater?’

Me: ‘What?’

Kid: ‘Sweater?’

I look at her, skeptically.

Kid: ‘Sweater? No? Wait…’ (to the kid next to her) ‘…Sweater? Sweater?’

Kid 2: ‘No, Twitter!’

Kid: ‘Ohhh, do you know Twitter?’


Me: ‘What country do you live in?’

Kid: ‘Japan!’

Me: ‘NO!! This is Korea!!’

Kid next to her, pointing at her: ‘Japan spy!!!’


Me: ‘What do you not want to be?’

Little Boy: ‘I don’t want to be a mom!’


Me, trying to get a kid to move to a different desk and pointing at am empty desk: ‘Move it!’

Kid, looking at me quizzically: ‘Movie? We watching movie?’

Me: ‘No! Move it!’


Kid: ‘Move it…? I like to move it move it?’

Me: ‘Come sit here!’

Kid, gathering his stuff: ‘I like to move it move it! I like to move it move it!’


Me: ‘Your final text will be in three weeks.’

Kid: ‘What?! Test last week!!!’

Me: ‘I know, it makes no sense to me either but it’s on the schedule so…we’re having a test.’


Submitted by Michael Holman:

When talking about good/bad habits:

Me: ‘What’s a bad habit you have?’

Girl1: ‘What is ‘habit’?’

Me: ‘Something you do every day.’

Girl1: ‘I have a bad habit of hating my baby brother.’

Girl2: ‘Me TOO!!’

At least she decided it was a ‘bad’ habit.


For more Quote Fridays, check out:

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K-Pop Vrs Dublin, Obituary Confessions and A Floating Stage – WTF Wednesday!

You know when you just get one of those days where the day is filled with shakes of the heads, mouth slightly ajar and your voice saying ‘What the %$&*?’??

Today was one of those days.

Up first:

I have a class I teach Monday, Wednesday and Friday. With lessons planned a month in advance, doing roughly 2-3 pages a day, when I’m filling in my lesson sheets the month before, I usually just write ‘3 pages each day’ in each square. The class before I check what we’ll being doing in the next class to make sure it’s not something too complicated. If it is, it gives me 48 hours to prepare for it.

The next class is on Friday.

I checked today what we’ll be doing on Friday.

It’s my birthday on Friday.

My name is Jenny.

This is what we’ll be doing (completely by accident):

Sooooo, yeah…that happened.

Up next: An Obituary Confession

As it turns out, I AM the guy who stole the safe from the Motor View Drive Inn back in June, 1971. I could have left that unsaid, but I wanted to get it off my chest. – Val Patterson

Tragically, Val Patterson, a Salt Lake native, lost his battle with throat cancer earlier this month but not before he had the chance to pen his own obituary. In what turned out to be a touching, humorous confessional, Mr. Patterson, 59, has created one of the best obituaries ever written and truly has had the last laugh.

He goes on to confess:

I really am NOT a PhD. What happened was that the day I went to pay off my college student loan at the U of U, the girl working there put my receipt into the wrong stack, and two weeks later, a PhD diploma came in the mail. I didn’t even graduate, I only had about 3 years of college credit. In fact, I never did even learn what the letters “PhD” even stood for.


To Disneyland – you can now throw away that “Banned for Life” file you have on me, I’m not a problem anymore – and SeaWorld San Diego, too, if you read this.

I urge you to read the obituary in full here: The Salt Lake Tribune

And finally: K-Pop Vrs Dublin

As first reported here (and then accidentally posted by my computer when it was a mere title so sorry for any confusion this has caused), Korean Pop, or K-Pop, hit the streets of Dublin recently!!

Having gone to school in Dublin city center, I had to walk past that very spot they’re dancing in day in, day out for two years while attending my last two years of school. That park behind them I walked through daily (except that once when there was a dead body found in it and the police taped it off) and that mall to the right, I’ve wasted many an hour wandering around.

K-Pop flash mob in Dublin, eh? What next? Leprechauns doing a jig down by the Han River? …Wait, that’s a good idea!!

Oh and speaking of havin’ a jig down by the river, The Canadian One and The British Friend are putting on a free music festival on a floating stage (A. Floating. Stage.) this September if you’re in Seoul and happen to be near the river, want to see free music and sit in the sun…I know, you read none of that, did you? I had you at floating stage, didn’t I?

A stage that floats.

It kinda floats.

It’s on the water.

Like an island.

It’s more like a stage island that, you know, floats.

Islands float, right?!

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Tuesday Timewasters – The Random Edition – 07/17

Here’s a collection of pictures I have on my computer that have not managed to find their way into any other Timewasters edition in 3 months so I present to you: Timewasters: The Things You May Have Missed Edition.

Happy Timewasting!


This is just wrong….


When bags go wrong:

From the BBC News Site:

And finally, an example of texts The Canadian One gets when I’m bored on the subway:

For more Timewasters, check out:

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‘Don’t you think this teapot looks like a turtle?’ – A Saturday Short

Watching a band play at the art show

Last Saturday, The Canadian One, The British Friend and I attended an art show. Well, actually, there were a lot more people at this art show but you only know these two so I won’t bore you with coming up with monikers for the others.

With The Canadian One distracted chatting to some people, I wandered the art space looking for items to buy when I came across a teapot and two cups.

I quickly grabbed The British Friend.

Me: ‘Come look at this teapot with me!’

The British Friend: ‘Ehhhh….’

And before he could answer, we were on the other side of the art space, viewing the teapot.

I pointed at it.

‘Don’t you think this teapot looks like a turtle?!’ I said, excitedly.

The British Friend looked at the teapot and then at me with a cautionary, scrunched up look on his face.

TBF: ‘…Yes?…’

I frowned.

TBF: ‘I feel yes is the correct answer you wanted me to give…Right?’

The Canadian One’s new cup…aka my new vase!

I nodded.

Me: ‘Yes. It totally looks like a turtle!! It’s a turtle teapot!!!’

He stared at the teapot for a moment and then at me with a look on his face like he was about to break it to me that he’d accidentally killed my goldfish in a freak, overfeeding incident and had left the floating corpse in the fishbowl.

Me: ‘I’m gonna go find The Canadian One.’

With The Canadian One located, I dragged him to look at the teapot while The British Friend used this opportunity to disappear.

‘Don’t you think this teapot looks like a turtle?!’ I said, smiling and pointing at the teapot on display.

‘No.’ said The Canadian One, without even pausing to consider it, ‘It looks like a teapot.’


Me: ‘I’m buying it! It looks like a turtle!’

It was approximately another hour before I actually got around to buying the teapot, by which time an extra cup had appeared and it now came with three cups. In all, The Canadian One and I came away with a teapot set with three cups and a beer drinking cup (which will not be used for drinking beer as I plan to put flowers in it).

What do you think? Do YOU think it looks like a turtle? Judge for yourself and hit up the comments below! 🙂

The Turtle Teapot!

For more Saturday Shorts (or posts featuring The British Friend and The Canadian One):

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‘I am McGyver!!’ – Quote Friday 07/13

The best of this week’s quotes from my elementary students in South Korea (and a couple thrown in from friends too!)

Random Compliment of the Week:

While at an art show, Girl to me: ‘You’re pretty, can you go pretend to look at art and she can take your picture?’

Random Blog Compliment (?) of the Week (just before surpassing 20,000 views in 4 months!):

Guy: ‘You know, I thought when you posted it on Facebook you were just reposting a blog that was much more popular than something you would write. I didn’t know you wrote it.’

What the WHAT? of the Week

The Canadian One teaches kindergarten to 6 year olds.

TCO: ‘Hey, my kids had show and tell today and they all brought in something to show and one kid brought in something in a Victoria’s Secret bag!’

Me: ‘…WHAT?!’

TCO: ‘Yeah! I’ll take a picture tomorrow.’

And he did:

Really?!! of the Week:

Guy, regarding his favorite pick-up line: ‘Let me touch your ovary.’

Followed by

Same Guy: ‘On a scale of 17-49, how annoying am I?’


Quote Friiiiiday! : Best Kids’ Quotes of the Week

A kid breaks and then quickly fixes a toy in class.

Kid, hands in the air triumphantly: ‘I am McGyver!!!’


A kid is playing with a crocodile toy. He’s pinning it to his ear.

Me: ‘Don’t do that, you’ll hurt yourself!’

Kid: “But it’s MY ear!!’


Me: ‘As you know, your test is on Thursday.’

Kid: ‘Oh the stress!!’


During the test:

Kid: ‘Teacher, give me a pencil and eraser.’

Kid next to him: ‘Teacher, give me money….and your house. Give me your house.’


Kid 1: ‘Teacher, how do spell crocodile?’

Me: ‘C-R-O-C-O-D-I-L-E.’

Kid 2: ‘SLOWLY!!!!!’

Kid 1: ‘C-R-O-C-O-D-I-L-E!!’


To a kid who was late for class:

Me: ‘Why are you late?’

Kid: ‘My friend was dancing.’


To three kids late for class:

Me: ‘Why are you late?’

Kid 1: ‘I was at home and I walk.’

Kid 2: ‘I was at library.’

Kid 3: ‘I was waiting for my brother.’

I look at them.

Me: ‘And how did you all find each other and arrive here together?’

All three: ‘Ummmmm….’

Kid 1: ‘We come together….(smiling)….I have homework!’


My grade two student and I have communication issues.

Kid: ‘Zebra spelling?’

Me: ‘Zed-A-B-R-A.’

Kid looks at me for a moment.

Kid: ‘Zed? Like Zee? Same?’

Me: ‘Yes.’


Kid: How do you spell crab?’

Me: ‘Crab?’

Kid: ‘No, crab.’

Me: ‘Crab?’ (doing an impression of a crab)

Kid: “NO, CRAB!!!’

Me: ‘Crab???’

Kid 2 looks over at Kid 1’s book.

Kid 2: ‘Giraffe.’

Kid 1: ‘Oh, yes, giraffe. How do you spell giraffe?’

5 minutes later:

Same kid: ‘How do you spell crab?’

Me: ‘Crab?’ (doing the same impression of a crab)

Kid: ‘Yes.’


Kid looks at her test: ‘All lines writing?’

Me: ‘Yes, of course.’

Kid: “But it’s very hard!’

Me: ‘No, it’s not!’

Kid: ‘It’s very hard!! We are Korean!!’


Kid: ‘Test is unit 1 and 2?’

Me: ‘No, units 1 to 6.’

Kid: ‘SHIT!!!’ (grabs her book)


For more Quote Fridays, check out:

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Obama Vrs Aliens – A Thursday Short

Obama Favorite To Defend Earth Against Alien Attack: Poll

No, seriously!

Last month, the National Geographic Channel conducted a rather unusual survey across America. Questioning 1,114 adults across the US regarding things of an other worldly nature, the TV channel found that 65% of respondents favored Obama to lead the response to an alien attack over Mitt Romney.

It should also be noted that more women and younger Americans are in the 65% than men or over-65’s. Make of that what you will.

The survey also found that 36% of adults believe UFOs exist, 11% claim to have seen a UFO and 20% say they know someone who claims to have seen a UFO. I know nobody who claims to have ever seen a UFO. Ever.

What do you think? How would Obama face up to an alien invasion? Do you believe that aliens exist? And more importantly, could Obama give a better speech than Bill Pullman did in Independence Day?

Could he?

Cooooould he??

For more posts, check out:

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Messin’ with Siri – Tuesday Timewasters 07/10

Recently, I was sitting around waiting for The Canadian One to come home when I decided to start playing with Siri on my iPhone. Now, bear in mind, I had drank two glasses of wine and found this faaaaar funnier than one should. The Canadian One doesn’t have Siri on his phone but I do as I dawdled on buying an iPhone and another updated version was released! …Although it still freaks me out when my phone calls me by my name…I mean a majority of my kids think my name is ‘Teacher’.

For example, yesterday, while writing something about me (God knows why!):

Kid: ‘The teacher….or Teacher?’

Me: ‘The teacher…My name is not teacher.’

Kid: ‘Oh yeah!’

Asked Siri something stupid, send it in to us at ‘theketchupwar at gmail . com’. Happy Timewasting!

I think Siri got bored with me in the end!

For more Timewasters, check out:

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‘What water tank?’ – Conversations with Mam

Water Tank
Not our Water Tank

My mam calls me on Skype. I’m on video. She’s not. I’m in Korea. She’s in Ireland. It’s the end of the call.

Mam: ‘I have to go. I have to run the bath every few hours to drain the water because there’s something wrong with the ball cock in the water tank.’

Me: ‘What water tank?’

‘The water tank in the attic.’

‘What water tank in the attic?’

‘The big steel thing that’s full of water.’

‘What big steel thing?’

‘It’s in the attic!!! Where did you think the water in the house came from?!’

‘The…world…I thought when you turn on the taps the world gives us water.’

The Earth seen from Apollo 17.
Where I think water comes from

‘The…world? No, it comes from the mains into the tank and then into the bathroom. Downstairs it comes from the mains into the taps.’

She pauses while I look confused and skeptic on video call.

Me: ‘What about the downstairs bathroom?’

‘That’s from the mains. Just upstairs is from the tank.’

Pause, while I contemplate this.

‘Why just upstairs?’

‘Something to do with pressure.’

‘What about the electric shower?’

‘Oh for God’s sake! That’s from the mains. That’s why you’re not supposed to drink the water from upstairs. Only downstairs. Because upstairs water has been sitting in a tank and you’re not supposed to drink it.’


Me: ‘I thought that was just a myth. I thought you just told us that to stop us drinking the water when we brushed our teeth.’

I couldn’t see her, but I pretty sure my mam shook her head in disbelief that we share the same DNA.

When we moved onto me asking how the electric shower was connected to the electricity in the house, Skype cut off our call. I think even it was getting bored with my questions.

For more Conversations:

And for more funny quotable quotes:

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Art Smart – A Saturday Short

It’s monsoon month here in Korea and my students have been arriving with all manner of different size / shape / color / cartoon character umbrellas but by far, the most interesting one was the ‘I drew my own umbrella’ umbrella from one of the girls in my last class on a Thursday.

As the girls insisted on being in the photo, I can only publish a section of the arty umbrella but what a fantastic idea for a rainy day…literally. Decorate your own umbrella, go play outside in the rain with it!! Perfect!

In honor of Rebecca’s umbrella, I recalled wandering upon this smart art online. I’ve lost the source but if you know it, send me an email and I’ll link it / credit it, no problem!

For more funny, random posts, check out:

And of course, there’s always more in The Index.

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‘They think we’re American.’ – Quote Friday 07/06

Quote Friday: A round-up of the best quotes from my elementary school kids in South Korea this week!

Ridiculous WordPress Stat Notice of the Week:

Someone Googled ‘in what part of canada the strippers earn more money?’ and found me…

What the WHAT?! of the Week:

While walking through our neighborhood on Wednesday on the way to watch The Amazing Spiderman, The Canadian One and I (The Shamrock) had a woman and her son jump out at us, waving their arms in celebration and wishing us:


I smiled politely while The Canadian One did what I should have done, leaned away slightly with suspicion and caution. While the incident confused The Canadian One, I came up with only one explanation:

‘They think we’re American.’

REALLY?!?!! Conversation of the Week:

I walk into my classroom to my co-teacher, who has her own classroom, messing about with my clock.
Me: ‘What are you doing?’
Her: ‘Changing the time.’
Me: ‘It’s five minutes slow. I know. I did that.’
Her: ‘The parents complain you let the students go home five minutes early.’
I look momentarily confused.
Me: ‘I don’t. I let them go at the right time.’
She changes my clock to the correct time.
Me: ‘No, no, I changed the clock because all the students start packing their stuff too early and I don’t want them to so I changed the time on the clock…about three months ago.’
Her: ‘The parents complain.’
Me: ‘Ok, but…I’m changing my clock back.’
Reluctantly, she hands me back my clock and I change it back again.
And onto Quotes…Happy Quote Friday!
During a tick-the-boxes worksheet:
CD: ‘It’s warm in spring’
Choices a) A snowy picture or b) A spring picture.
Me: ‘What’s the answer?’
Kid: ‘B.’
Me: ‘And what’s the sentence?’
Kid 2: ‘IT’S B.’
I look at him.
Kid 2: ‘It’s a sentence!’
Me: ‘Your homework is pages 34-37.’
Kid 2: ‘I want my money back!’
During a break, the younger kids are messing about. One kid tries to kick another kid from the other side of a desk but misses.
Kid 2: ‘Hahahaha, you have short legs!!’
We had literally just learned body parts, etc in the previous class. I was so proud!…Until I had to break up the ensuing fight.
Kid: ‘He goes go camping.’
Kid 2: ‘NO!’
Kid: ‘He goes go camping.’
Kid 2: ‘NOOOO!’
Kid: ‘It says!!! He goes go camping.’
Kid: ‘He goes…camping?’
Kid 2 exhales.
Me: ‘Today we will do all of unit 6.’
Kid: ‘No thanks.’
Me: ‘That wasn’t a question.’
Kid: ‘Oh…’
I immediately regret the page in the book that says: ‘Interview your English teacher and write up the interview.’
Among the questions I got asked:
‘Do you have a Korean name?’
‘Are you intimate with Korean teacher?’ (who’s female and works in the next classroom)
‘Do you have boyfriend?’
‘Do you like fruit?’
‘What are you weight?’
‘After school you do what?’
‘England and Korea which is better?’
‘How much you get monthly salary?’
‘Will you marry me?’
Luckily class ended before I answered….well, any of them! Thank God for well-timed classes!
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Tuesday Timewasters – 07/03

Ah July, signalling the start of rainy season here in Korea, the impending doom of summer camp classes which to this day I really don’t see the point in and my birthday, the best thing about the summer. Soon my Tuesdays will be no longer filled with breaks but rather with pointless Art / Science / English Play / Whatever else pointless class my company think up for me to teach.

But for now, Tuesday Timewasters is still a go-go so HAPPY TIMEWASTING!!

First up, some riddles:

1. What is a word made up of 4 letters, yet is also made up of 3. Although is written with 8 letters, and then with 4. Rarely consists of 6, and never is written with 5.

2. This appeared in my ESL book once. What is the first letter of this sequence? (And it’s not ‘E’)

__  T  T  F  F

 S  S  E  N  T

 E  T  T  F  F

 S  S  E  N  T


Moving on!

I wanna ride in this:



The Canadian One sent me this fantastic find!  


And speaking of The Canadian One, in honor of Canada Day just passed:


I’m freeeeeeeeeeeeeee!


(as featured on


A sign The Canadian One and I saw on our jaunt to Cheonan recently. Not funny in the US. WAAAAAY funny in Korea! No idea why!


And finally I leave you with something that’ll make you go, DOH!!

For more Timewasters, check out:

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‘He said I am sweet potato!’ – Quote Friday 06/29

Quote Friday: A round-up of the best quotes from my elementary school kids in South Korea this week!

Some school-related news: this week marks Open Class being upon us…today in fact…in T-60 minutes. For those who don’t know, Open Class is where all of my classes I teach across two days are combined into just 5 classes via time not level…where’s the logic, really?!!…and then the parents and other teachers from the school get to come in, watch the classes, take notes and grade me on how well I do…yep….so that’s happening today. Due to this, Quote Friday is being posted now, as oppose to later as the plan for today is 1) Do Open Classes, 2) Do Not Freak Out, 3) Go home, get changed, get The Canadian One to buy me dinner and copious amounts of alcohol….4) Wake Up Saturday Afternoon.

And so I present: Quote Friday!

I get the sneaky suspicion my kids are getting tired of my reminders that Open Class is almost upon us.

Me: ‘Ok, so on Friday it’s Open Class.’

Kid: “WE KNOW!’


Giving warnings about Open Class, pointing to the three naughtiest boys in my class:

Me: ‘You, you and you…’

Kid: ‘Shut up?’


Me: ‘Well, yes be quiet.’


Me: ‘What must we remember for tomorrow?’

Kid: ‘Speak in medium voice.’


Talking to my Grade Twos:

Me: ‘Ok I’m going to take your books…’

Kid: ‘You take my book??!!!’

Me: ‘And give it back to you tomorrow.’

Kid: ‘Why?!!!’

Me: ‘Because I think you will forget your book.’

Kid: ‘No. I remember.’

Me: ‘Ok. You won’t forget?’

Kid: ‘No.’

Me: ‘You’re sure?’

Kid: ‘Yes.’

Me: ‘Ok but if you forget your book I’ll minus you three stickers.’


Kid: ‘You can have my book.’


A kid walks into class, eyes the newly decorated back wall of the classroom and looks at me.

Kid: ‘For mommy and daddy?’


Me: ‘For Open Class, you will work in pairs. There will be 15 students…’

Kid: ’15 people? One people solo?’


Me: ‘Write down a problem and two solutions.’

Kid: ‘I don’t have money. I really want money. Let’s call my mom.’


Me, telling a kid off: ‘You know if you say what what what it’s very bad, it’s not very nice.’


Kid, eyeing me suspiciously: ‘But…teacher just say…’


Me: ‘I said…’

Kid: ‘You sad?!!!’

Me: ‘What?’

Kid: “Why teacher sad?!!’

Me: ‘What?!’

Kid: ‘Teacher say, I sad.’

Me: ‘I SAID…not SAD…I’m not sad, I’m fine.’


Kid: ‘In fall, I go hiking.’

Kid next to her: ‘Ouuuuu leaves!’


Kid: ‘Teacher, look I make!! At school! It’s a Christmas card.’

Me: ‘It’s June!!’

Kid: ‘I know. At Christmas I give to mommy!’


Regarding Open Class:

Kid: ‘Mommy and daddy books?’

Me: ‘No, mommy and daddy don’t get books.’

Kid: ‘Mommy and daddy stickers?’

Me: ‘No, mommy and daddy are watching the class not doing the class.’

Kid: ‘No stickers?’


Me, describing a spider from the book: ‘It has big, black eyes. It is small. It has fur. It is cute…’



Regarding a ‘hamster’ flashcard I’d just given him:

Me: ‘Where’s your flashcard?’

Kid: ‘I don’t know.’

Me: ‘Give me the flashcard!’

The kid takes the flashcard out of his desk and holds it up.

Kid: ‘But I want. I can have?’

Me: ‘No, you cannot.’

Kid: ‘But it’s so cute!’


I come back from the bathroom and the giant TV mounted on the wall is shaking.

Me: ‘Why is the TV shaking?!’

Kid: ‘It’s happy! It’s happy so it shake!’

She’d run into it accidentally but still, good answer.


A kid yells an answer at me.

Me: ‘Why are you yelling at me, I’m right beside you?!’

Kid repeats answer, whispering.


Kid: ‘Teacher, smell my pencil.’

Holds out pencil.

Me: ‘Um, no.’


Kid, looking at my coffee: ‘Is it like medicine?’


I hold up a picture of a hippo.

Me: “What is it?’

Kid: ‘People…no…wait…no…’


From a written task: ‘This is my mom. She’s in the dad.’


I hold up a picture of a whale.

Me: ‘What is it?’

Entire class: ‘I don’t know. I don’t know.’

One kid: ‘Whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaale. Whallllllllllllllle. Whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaale.’


From a written task, describing her friend: ‘She likes brutal.’

Me: ‘She likes brutal? What?’

Kid mimes killing and stabbing.

Me: ‘Oh, violence….v-i-o-l-e-n-c-e.’


Kid: ‘Teacher, Friday, Open Class, I don’t come.’

Me: ‘What?! Why not?! You have to come. I need an even amount of students!’

Kid: ‘I am the only boy.’

Me: “You’re the only boy everyday, that’s not a valid excuse!’


Me: ‘What can you do in Winter?’

Kid: ‘Ohhhh ummmmm teacher….ummmm….it….snow….and ummm….ohhhhhhh play……….snow……..SNOW SURVIVOR!!!’
Kid 2: (looking at her friend) ‘Snowfight.’
Kid: ‘My school teacher called me…um….고구마….It’s potato’s brother.’
Me: ‘고구마 is a sweet potato. Your school teacher called you a sweet potato?!’
Kid: ‘He said I am sweet potato!’
Me: ‘Why?’
Kid: ‘I DON’T KNOW!!’

By the time third period rolls round, I usually have an iced latte in the class and all the students know the unspoken (and occasionally very spoken) rule of DON’T TOUCH TEACHER’S COFFEE…which also encompasses Don’t knock over Teacher’s coffee and Do not drop anything into Teacher’s coffee.

This rule especially comes into play when we’re playing ball games in class or the kids are running about.

On Wednesday, a kid wrote on the board and on her way back to her desk, bumped into the desk with my coffee on it. The kid was fine.

Me: ‘Be careful of the coffee.’

Her Friend: ‘TEACHER….(pointing at her friend but looking at me sternly)…Are you ok?!!’

Me: ‘Sorry, yes, are you ok?’

Kid: ‘Yes.’

Me: ‘Good. Be careful of the coffee.’


 Find more Quote Friday’s here:

And many more in the Index and on The Wall!

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Tuesday Timewasters – 06/26

Soooo you may remember in one of my very first Tuesday Timewasters, I wrote about a website called The Doghouse Diaries. Wellllll, when I first wrote about them, they were small with not many comics online but NOW, now after a few months, they have lots….so many in fact that choosing my top 5 10 15was a difficult task. But alas, you’ll be happy to know, I managed it.

Happy Timewasting!
















For more Timewasters, check out:

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‘I just forked my hair’

English: A hairbrush with metal bristles

The relationship I have with my hairbrush is like a relationship with a bad boyfriend, never around when you need it and you unexpectedly step on it in the middle of the night.

Akin to stepping on a rogue Lego piece or bubble wrap in a half asleep jaunt from the bedroom to the bathroom, a hairbrush crunching under my feet always elicits some kind of mangled swear word from my mouth. Although, it is less heart attack inducing than the bubble wrap, which was more of a fight or flight reaction.

The amount of times I’ve been late for work/dinner/drinks at the bar due to the prolonged search for my hairbrush is astronomical. I usually resort to just grabbing a fork in an attempt to convince my hair that ‘fluffy’ is not a good look on me.

I regard both the mystery of the disappearing hairbrush and women’s beauty products in the exact same light, with bewilderment and suspicion. I find the shear range of different women’s lotions and potions to be overwhelming and equally frightening. I mean, besides price, what really makes Product A different from Product B…in the long run…at the end of the day….really….?


I rarely wear make-up. In fact, I don’t actually think I own ANY make-up at all. I have a limited amount of moisturizers and toners littering my bathroom shelves. My face cleanser is a bar of soap and I’m pretty sure my facial moisturizer is just body lotion.

The reasons for the lack of make-up isn’t due to a girl power notion that women shouldn’t have to wear make-up in their daily lives when men don’t. It’s more of a….well….a laziness aspect. I wore make-up before my arrival in Korea on a daily basis. I was one of those people that couldn’t venture to the mall with her foundation and blusher on. Arrival here, however, changed that.

Summers here hit high humidity factors causing make-up to literally melt off your face and the winter…well, in the winter I’m normally trying not to freeze to death so I generally don’t care about what I look like in survival mode. Consequently working out I could gain an extra 10 minutes in bed each morning if I went with the sans make-up look caused me to give up my morning make-up routine altogether.


In Korea, as far as beauty products are concerned, there are two brands staples in my bathroom: Lush, an English company, and Skin Food, a Korean brand. The only problem with buying Lush products is this: they smell so frikkin’ good.

‘You’re very quick at showering.’ – The Canadian One’s idea of a compliment.

But alas, no more. With the recent bonus I received from work and my splurge at the Lush store, my bathroom is now filled with honey and divine smelling products just waiting to be unleashed. Thanks to my shower wash being named ‘It’s Raining Men’, I find myself not only smelling like a princess who fell into a bee hive and didn’t get hurt but also, I tend to break into a dance while singing the old Weather Girls song of the same moniker. Not caring that a slight misstep in the wet-room shower and splat on the tiles I go, my showers have become longer and The Canadian One’s complement no longer applies.

To be fair, you’d think I’d be a little more precarious about the booty shaking in the shower given my history of bathroom related accidents. Having once fallen, knocked myself unconscious and knocked my front tooth clean in half while showering. THEN a year later having a glass shelf of decorative candles fall on me while I was relaxing in the bathtub covering the bathtub, floor, wall, door and my clothes in blood…only required 8 stitches though. And as if that wasn’t bad enough, The Canadian One just last year slipped in the very same shower I dance in, fracturing his elbow and putting him out of commission as a guitarist for a while. It’s worth noting, he was not dancing…or so he says. I wasn’t in the house when it happened. But really, you’d think I’d have a little more sense. Every time I even slip a little, it’s heart attack time…and then, like a goldfish, two seconds later I’ve completely forgotten about it and break into song again.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, it’s quite early in the morning and I’ve got some dancing showering to do. If you don’t hear from me again, you should assume I’ve fallen down.

But before I risk that death-defying feat, first I’ve gotta find that damn hairbrush!

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‘A SNOOOOOOW PERSON!’ – Quote Friday – 06/22

Quote Friday: A round-up of the best quotes from my elementary school students in South Korea this week!


While trying to help another kid spell ‘quiet’, the kid writes a ‘p’ on the board.

Kid 2: ‘No, NO!! Q!!! Q!!!! No P!!! Q….it’s P’s friend!!’


A kid runs into my class with a certificate of achievement.

Kid: ‘Look! Look! School king give me!!!’


Me: ‘What do lions eat?’

Kid: (without missing a beat) ‘Teachers.’


We read a story about a detective cat called Cleo.

Me: ‘What’s a detective?’

Kid: ‘Like Sherlock Holmes.’

Me: ‘Great, so what’s Cleo?’

Kid: ‘…Sherlock….Cat?’


I explain to my class that my next class (my 4:10 class) has been cancelled and so they are my last class. They are faffing about not working so I tell them I can stay alllllll day and teach them the three pages we have to finish.

One kid screams and plays.



While explaining to my class during Open Class they will be required to work in pairs, something this particular class loathes. One boy is shaking his head in disgust saying ‘No, no, no.’

Me: ‘Ok, but for Open Class, your head can say no, but your face must say yes.’

Kid thinks for a moment.

He smiles, nods and says: ‘No.’

Me: ‘At least you’re smiling.’


While teaching grade one ‘How are you?’:

Me: ‘I’m good.’

Little boy, mishearing me: ‘I’m cute??’ (looking at me skeptically…and shaking his head)


I hold up a picture of a polar bear:

Me: ‘What’s this?’

Kid: ‘A penguin’s friend.’


Me: ‘What’s a pet?’

Kid: ‘A easy animal.’


I’ve just finished explaining for open class next Friday (06/29), they need to bring a pencil but do not need a book.

Me: ‘To recap, what do you not bring?’

Kids: ‘The book.’

Me: ‘Great and what DO you bring?’

Kids: ‘A pencil.’

Kid 1: ‘And our…inside our heads.’

Me: ‘Yes, your brain!’


Me: ‘Do you have a pet?’

Kid: ‘No. My friend have hamster but it die. It live on veranda and cold and die.’

Sad but really, all I could think was, ‘how do you know the word veranda’?!!


Me: ‘Where’s your book?’

Little Boy: ‘In my handbag.’

Me: ‘You don’t have a handbag. That’s a backpack. A handbag is for girls…usually.’

Little Boy: ‘I am handsome?’

Me: ‘What? No, handbag…not handsome.’

Little: ‘I am not handsome??’

Me: ‘What?”

Little Boy: ‘You say I am ugly?!!’

Me: ‘Where’s your book?!!’

Little Boy: ‘Here!…I am handsome?’


Me: ‘Ok, so for Open Class this class and that class (next room) will combine and be one big class.’

Kid: ‘WHY?!!’

Me: ‘Because I’m only one teacher and there are two classes.’

Kid: ‘No cut and be half teacher?’

Me: ‘Ummm, nooooo. So, there’ll be 15 students…’

Kid 2: ‘FIFTY?!!!’ (he starts manically counting the 16 desks in the classroom)

Me: ‘One five. Fifteen.’

Kid 2: ‘Ohhhh.’


And many more in the Index and on The Wall!

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Thursday Short: What I SHOULD have done at Costco today

English: Costco Wholesale Corporate Logo

Fearing imminent laptop overload, I went to Costco before school today to pick up a new hard drive. I figured it would be a lengthy process as A) I live in Korea, B) I’d lost my card and was trying to figure out how to explain that to the customer service staff in English and C) statistically things you have to do in a hurry will always take twice as long.

Now, whereas I made the elementary mistake of buying a coffee right before I went into Costco thus requiring the staff to frantically hand signal to me that drinks weren’t allowed leading to me having to knock back half the coffee and then throw the rest away, what I actually should have done for the ten minutes that I was planning on being in the store was this:

Checked the damn thing into a locker and resumed drinking it on my way out roughly TWELVE MINUTES LATER.

It was one of those moments of walking out of the store, catching a glance at the locker area and thinking….ohhhhhhh…yeeeeahhhhh, that’s what I shoulda done with the $4 coffee I just bought.

Lesson learned.

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Tuesday Timewasters: The Viral Edition – 06/19

Ohhhhh Facebook, you are the BIGGEST timewaster in my life currently!! THE BIGGEST!

Although, thanks to Facebook, in the past few weeks a lot of things have appeared in my interwebosphere…that’s a word, right?!…No??

Oh well, here’s a selection of my favorites anyway:

Happy Timewasting!

First up, ohhhhhh MBC MBC MBC, what a silly little mess you’ve managed to create for yourself here in The Land of The Morning Calm…or rather not-so-calm in your case. A video that spawned a Facebook group that garnered over 8,000 members within the first week or so of it’s inception and a public…eh…statement by the TV channel that broadcast it. It’s been dubbed ‘racist’, ‘xenophobic’ and ‘demeaning to both foreigners and Korean women’ but you should, of course, check it out for yourself and form your own opinion.

The Shocking Reality About Relationships with Foreigners (in Korea)

For anyone wanting to read the transcript of the video, Zackary Downey has very helpfully posted a full script and subtitled version here.

The only good thing to come out of this whole mess and uproar is the pictures of the happy multicultural couples appearing all over the web. They just make you wanna say ‘Awwwwww’.

Next up, another Korean video and I dare you to get in touch with your juvenile side and make it through the entire video without a giggle…or two….or three. (If watching at work, headphones are your friend)

Now, for my favorite site of the week, kikinitinkorea and oh my good God, if you’ve ever lived in Korea YOU. WILL. LOVE. THIS.

My top two posts from the site are these two and trust me when I say, it was hard to choose just these two:

Crossing the street in Korea

Trying to blend in as the only foreigner in my Kpop dance class

Just to note, the site is based on another site called whatshouldwecallme, my favorite two of that site, adapted to suit me, are:

How I wake The Canadian One up: 

When people ask me if teaching crazy kids in Korea will drive me to alcohol:

I’m like:

And now moving on to a word from Henry Rollins:

Aaaaaaand finally, a site that I read about in The New York Times yesterday and CNN this morning and dedicated to anyone living in Korea and who does the happy dance whenever it’s Bibimbap Day!

Now, personally, I don’t eat lunch at my school. I bring my own. Our lunches tend to consist of spicy soup, a mystery stew containing both octopus/fish/squid AND beef/chicken, plain rice and sometimes a piece of fruit. I was told by my company that I ‘must eat lunch at the school in order to seem like I’m trying to assimilate into Korean culture‘. NO mention of me living here for the three years prior to me starting there nor the fact that I’m not a newbie and I know which Korean foods I DON’T like. It lasted all of four days before I opted to risk being fired over having to eat plain rice for lunch each day and being stared at in the canteen for being the only foreigner. On day four when the questioning, translated through my co-worker, of ‘You don’t like Korean food?’, ‘Oh, you’re not hungry?’ and ‘Here try it, you’ll like it’ started, I bailed.

On that note, have you heard about Martha Payne? Well, this little Scottish 9 year old is taking the world by storm. Unhappy with the state of her school lunches, she decided to start a blog, Never Seconds, about it. She started taking a picture of her lunch everyday and posting them online. She rates the lunches based on her own ‘Food-O-Meter’ scale and the site has generated worldwide attention with over 5,800,000 views in just 7 short weeks. SEVEN. SHORT. WEEKS.

Last Thursday, the council unfortunately decided to ban Martha’s camera from her school thus signalling the end of her blog. Martha posted a ‘Goodbye’ message to her fans and that was it…until 24 hours later when the council leader, responding to worldwide public outcry including statements from celebrity chefs Nick Nairn and Jamie Oliver, overturned the senior officials’ order and Martha’s blog shall resume normal business on Monday…with the time difference, she’s probably still at school right now.

Martha is also using the blog to raise money for Mary’s Meals, a charity which sets up school feeding programmes for children in some of the poorest countries in the world. Initially aiming to raise £7,000, Martha’s JustGiving page records that she’s currently made £83,479.46 for the charity!

What do / did YOU think of your school lunch? Lemme know in the comments.

For more Timewasters, check out:

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‘I did my homework with a paintbrush.’ – Quote Friday 06/15

Quote Friday: A round-up of the best quotes from my elementary school students in South Korea this week!

First up, a non-school quote:

Girl at party last weekend: ‘Where are you from?’

Me: ‘Ireland.’

Girl: ‘Oh, Ireland, Texas?’

Me: ‘No, Ireland the country.’


Girl: ‘You must think I’m really stupid.’

Me: ‘Actually, I’ve been asked that exact question before.’


In the middle of repeating vocabulary:

Kid: ‘Teacher, I’m hungry.’

Me: ‘That’s nice. I don’t care.’

Kid: ‘You don’t have food??’

Me: ‘I’m not giving you food!’

Suddenly, a piece of candy hits him on the side of the head. We all turn to see one little boy has throw a candy at him. The kid picks it up and throws it back at kid 2. I take it away from them both and put it on my desk.

Kid 2 has a funny look on his face. I look at him, quizzically. He lifts his hand to reveal a second candy, smiles and then bursts out laughing.


Me: ‘What’s skipping?”

Papa Smurf
Do I look like I skip to you?!

Entire class, breaking into The Smurfs theme song: ‘La la la la la la la la la la la!!’

Me: ‘What? That’s The Smurfs! Skipping is this.’

I skip across the classroom.

Kid: ‘Yes, you look like a Smurf.’

Me: ‘Did you just call me a Smurf?’

Kid: ‘Yes, look.’

He gets up and skips across the classroom just like I did.

Kid: ‘See, like a Smurf.’

I look unconvinced.

Kid: ‘I’ll do one more time.’

He does.

Kid: “See. A Smurf.’


Kid: ‘I did my homework with a paintbrush.’

Me: ‘What?’

Kid: “I didn’t have a pencil.’


One kid touches another kid’s arm.

Kid: ‘Teacher, he’s touching ME!!! Teacher, he’s GAY!!’


While studying ‘like’:

Me: ‘What does your mommy like?’ (options on the page include a variation of fruits and vegetables)

Kid: ‘My mom likes money.’

Kid 2: ‘My mom doesn’t like dad.’


Two boys are hitting each other with pencils.

Me: “What are you doing?!’

Kid: ‘We’re swordfighting!!’


There is paper ALL over my floor.

Me: “What the hell is all this on my floor?!!’

Kid 1: ‘Oh my God, you said a bad word!!’

Me: ‘No, I didn’t.’

Kid 1: ‘Yes, you did! You said ‘what the hell’!’

Me: ‘No, I didn’t!!’

Kid 1: ‘I hear you!!!’

Kid 2: ‘The fan and the paper and whoooosh and paper on floor.’



From The Canadian One and his Kindergarten students:

I was teaching my students can and will.

One wrote ‘I can ride a bike’ and then, ‘Soon I will smoke.’

That’s a good goal!
While I’m checking off a name, a kid grabs a marker and proceeds to write on the board. She’s written the first letter, a ‘C’, when I grab her hand.
Me: ‘WAIT!’
The kid looks down to see she’s holding a permanent marker.
Kid: ‘Oh no!!’
Me: ‘Oh my God!’
Kid: ‘Wait, I can fix.’
Me: ‘What?’
The kid grabs a normal board marker, colors in the ‘C’ and erases the whole thing off the board. It’s spotless and no trace is left.
Me: ‘Wow, that’s magic!!’
Kid 2: ‘It’s no magic, it’s SCIENCE!!’ (shaking her head at me!)
A kid is looking under the desk and making a disgusted face. She puts up her hand.
Kid: ‘Teacher, come here. Look.’ (pointing under the desk)
I look at her skeptically.
Kid: ‘It’s ok. No bug.’
A kid speaks Korean in my class several times so as punishment I make her stand up with one hand on her head and the other over her mouth. She’s wearing a green sweater. Her friend next to her bursts into laughter.
Kid: ‘Hahahaha, she look like a cactus!!!!’
For more Quote Friday, check out:

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Tuesday Timewasters – 06/12

Ok, so it’s been a while since I did a round-up of random sites on the interwebbie so I figured I’d do one this week and oh boy, did I find a plethora of random sites to recommend! Happy Timewasting!

1. First up, something somewhat topical to me: The 9 Ways of Hangman: 


Now, personally, in class, I don’t play hangman. I had a teacher once who told us a harrowing story of a kid in her class whose father hung himself and an innocent game of hangman during the lesson sent her into a whirlwind of tears and panic. And so, I play Snowman. Same concept, just a snowman instead:


Moving on.

2. Up next, Matt Green and his blog of interesting, though-probably-not-true-but-funny-none-the-less, trivia. With gems such as:

Baths consisted of a big tub filled with hot water. The man of the house had the privilege of the nice clean water, then all the other sons and men, then the women and finally the children. Last of all the babies. By then the water was so dirty you could actually lose someone in it. Hence the saying, “Don’t throw the baby out with the Bath water!


Bread was divided according to status. Workers got the burnt bottom of the loaf, the family got the middle, and guests got the top, or the upper crust.

3. There’s a website out there dedicated completely to chronicling truck spills aka the things that spill outta trucks at random intervals in life, such as Doritos or Olympic Coins or Russian Rocket Containers…or a Whale…wait…a WHAT?!

Yep, a whale! 

Apparently in Taiwan in January 2004 a whale exploded in the street. IN. THE. STREET.

Now, before any animal activists contact me, it’s said the whale died of unknown causes on a beach and was being transported to a research facility to determine cause of death when it, ya know, exploded.

4. So far we’ve dealt with suicide by hanging and whale guts today….let’s lighten the mood with some of the strangest  airline baggage left behind by passengers courtesy of the Unclaimed Baggage Center:

  1. Hoggle from the movie “Labyrinth.”Yes. Someone checked the orignal puppet.
  2. A Gucci suitcase filled with ancient Egyptian artifacts.
  3. A rattlesnake. A SNAKE…ON A PLANE!
  4. A $250,000 guidance system belonging to the U.S. Navy.
  5. A Barbie doll stuffed with $500 in cash.
  6. A suit of armor.
  7. A 300-year-old violin.
  8. An ordinary-looking sock, which contained a 5.8-carat diamond set in a platinum ring.
  9. A camera designed for the Space Shuttle.
  10. A 40.95-carat natural emerald.

I once left a teddy bear on an airplane when I was little and my aunt returned to fetch it for me but you would think if you left a 40.95-carat natural emerald on a plane, you’d be wanting it back…No?

5. The people over at Crazy214 have compiled a list of the most AMAZING like a BOSS gifs floating around on the interweb. You. MUST. check. them. out!

6. Over at The Chicken Hammer Blog, they have a section dedicated to ‘Idiot Sightings’. Now, does anyone remember when The Canadian One though the flowers that spelled out ‘Spring’ actually spelled out ‘Sprin 9?’…It’s just like that…but with other people.

7. And finally: THE. BEST. PAINTJOB. ON. A. PLANE. EVER.

For more Timewasters, check out:

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On Days Off We Ride Ducks!


This past Wednesday was Memorial Day here in Korea which, if you’re a regular reader you’ll know, meant one thing to me, all together now: DAY OFF SCHOOL! Our second four day week in a row was a welcome addition to the first week of June and allowed us ample time to hypothesize on the positive sides to having a two days of work – day off – two days of work – two days off week.

Students taking a test at the University of Vi...

Meanwhile, back in The Land of the Shamrock, Wednesday June 6th marked the first day of the 2012 Leaving Certificate exams. Now, for anyone who doesn’t know, the Leaving Cert. is the 2 week series of exams you take in order to complete Secondary School (High School) in Ireland. For two years, we study our chosen (and not-so-chosen) subjects and it all culminates in this one 3-hour exam in each subject at the end of year two (English, Irish and Maths I recall are two exams each). In all, over a two week period, you would probably sit 10 or more exams depending on your subject choices, the results of which determine, not only which university you qualify for, but which courses you qualify for. Unlike USA or Canada, in Ireland you apply for your degree you want to end up with and that’s the only thing you study for your entire time at university. And it all comes down to the Leaving Certificate. The whole country sits them at the same time and fail them, you must wait a whole 12 months until the official exam days come ’round again.

Failed every exam up until the Leaving Cert. (like I did with Business Studies) but passed the final exam (like I did with Business Studies), you’re fine. Passed every exam up until the Leaving Cert. (like I did with Physics) but failed the final exam (like I did with Physics!), you’re not so lucky. Although in my case, I’d predicted I’d fail at least one exam and knowing only your top 6 exam subjects are counted, I took seven. I took Maths, English and Irish (compulsory), German (my compulsory European language), Physics (my compulsory science subject) and then Business Studies and Geography, which teaches you about caves and the sea and not so much about different countries and world geography.

The reason I mention the Leaving Cert. is this: This week, 10 years ago, I was taking my Leaving Cert. exams. I thought getting through these exams were my life. That there was nothing beyond it. Just this, just these exams. But oh…oh how wrong I was. 10 years ago, I was 17, plotting to move to England, wanted to do nothing but write all day and was studying for exams no one has ever asked me about since. 10 years later, I’m 27, plotting to move to Canada, want for nothing but to write all day and drink wine and haven’t sat an exam in a decade…and I graduated university!

So, 10 years later, how did I spend my day off school?


The Canadian One and I hit up Ttukseom Hangang Park area for some fun in the sun. 10 minutes from our apartment (not too far from the Cherry Blossom date), it’s easily accessible via Line 7 of the Seoul subway. After some pre-boating riverside relaxing (read: drinking) among the Koreans in tents (no comment), we meandered towards the river to commandeer our boat.

Finally, after an entire year of talking about duck boating (I pass it everyday on the way to work), I was venturing towards the Duck Boat Dock to board my our duck boat.

We paid our 15,000won ($13), were told we had 45 minutes, donned our life jackets and hit the water, peddling off into the distance…though not too far or the man in the speedboat will come after us and force us to turn back. Please note: When on a duck boat, do not go past the buoy area, the man will come after you.

The Canadian One models the life jacket!

During our time at sea on the river, The Canadian One took the steering duties while we both peddled.

 We busied ourselves racing trying to crash into our friends in another boat.



We watched the motorised not-a-duck-boats chug slowly past and we realised our boat didn’t like to turn left so we went in circles for a bit.

We had a brief NCIS: Han River moment when we discovered an empty duck boat and went to investigate.

 We listened to SNL’s ‘I’m on a Boat’ and generally tried our best not to tip our boat over.

Then it was time to return our boat to shore (easier said than done) and hit the bar for some cocktails and cheeseburgers…What?! It was a vacation day!!

I think if I could go back a decade and tell that nervous, 17 year old girl that life after the Leaving Cert. was wonderful, I would. I’d tell her noone would ever ask her about the exams, that in fact getting an A in her Math exam would lead to her getting the worst teaching job ever. I would tell her how she’ll go great places, make some fantastic friends, meet some downright weird people, become a teacher and find a Maple Leaf to love and who loves her. I’d tell her two of her friends from her school group would get married and have a baby and it’s not the two she would have thought. I’d tell her not to study writing as a degree but to study something more useful and take an online class in writing instead. I’d warn her against tequila.

If I could go back a decade, I’d show her the picture of The Canadian One and I in our matching life jackets trying not to capsize our duck boat on the Han river. I think it would make her very happy.

For more fun and interesting adventures in Seoul, check out:

comedy conversations entertainment funny humor kids Korea quotes South Korea

Quote Friday – Some New Quotes and Top 11 Quotes From The Wall

So some of you may noticed last week’s absence of Quote Friday. For this, I apologise. You see between last week and this week, my students have been finishing their old books and starting their new books. This has involved a lot of writing in class and very little speaking other than the occasional, ‘I don’t like the new book’ comments I get with each new book.

The students were also informed this week that Open Class is soon upon us. Ah, Open Class, a day in which the classes are combined via time NOT level (really, where’s the logic??!) and their parents get to come in, watch me try to teach one book to a vast spectrum of different ability students and they write down their thoughts on my class. They essentially grade me on how good I am at, not teaching a normal class under normal everyday circumstances, but how well I fare at teaching kids doing the wrong book at the wrong level with other kids that are waaaaay more advanced than them…Oh and it’s got to be fun too.

This, combined with the new books, the fact that my air conditioning is controlled by a central school system and they don’t deem it hot enough for it to be switched on yet leading to a rise in heat and sleepiness during class and a majority of my students being on field trips recently, has lead to no new and/or interesting quotes from my students.

Except one:

Today, I go down the classroom to break up a fight between two little boys who are calling each other ‘a baby’, moments after I told the entire class off for faffing about and acting like kindergarten students.

Kid 1: ‘You baby!!’

Kid 2: ‘YOU BABY!!’

Me: ‘HEY!’

Kid 1, stands up, pointing at Kid 2: ‘Mommy’s milk, you go, drink!’

I immediately burst into laughter to the surprise of the entire class and had to hide my face behind my book.


And so I present to you my Top 11 (cos I couldn’t pick just 10) Quotes From The Wall!


Having just read the sentence: ‘Baby wallabies are born without fur.’

Me: ‘What are baby wallabies born without?’

Kid: ‘Hope.’



Me: ‘What’s a baby chicken called?’

Kid: ‘An egg fry.’



Me: ‘What’s back to life?’

‘A ghost?’

Me: ‘No.’

‘Dead…then no dead.’

Me: ‘YES!’


Me: ‘OK.’


Me: ‘Yes.’

‘Jesus was a zombie!!’

Me: ‘No…well, maybe.’

‘Yes teacher, Jesus was a zombie!’

Me: ‘Fine, but …don’t tell your mommy I said that!’



Me: ‘What’s your favorite book?’

‘Harry Potter.’

Me: ‘What’s the story?’

‘It has no story.’



The two BEST definitions I’ve ever gotten:

Me: ‘What are eyebrows?’

Kid: ‘People’s eye fur.’


Me: ‘What’s a ‘tail’?’

‘A dog’s antenna.’



I asked my class what is ‘dark’. One student stood up, all excited and proceeded to explain the word dark using very animated hand gestures and random English words. He made no sense but I could tell he knew what it meant. His friend calmly raised his hand. I looked at him and he leaned over to the light switch next to him, knocked off the light….

…and then looked at his friend.



I stare, wide-eyed at a child making noise in my class while I’m talking. We had just learned the words ‘egg’, ‘chicken’, ‘lay’ and ‘hatch’.

Kid 1: ‘Teacher, your eyes, so big.’

Kid 2: ‘Teacher teacher, your eyes will hatch!!!’



Reading a story about a mother and two kids:

Kid 1: ‘Where is father?’

Me: ‘Maybe on vacation.’

‘Maybe dead.’

Me: ‘OK, or maybe on vacation.’

‘Yes teacher, a forever vacation.’



Me: ‘Name a state in America.’

Kid: ‘Loveland.’

‘What? Loveland?’

‘Yes, it’s a state.’

‘No it’s not!’

‘Yes, teacher, my mother and my father go to Loveland and give birth to my brother.’


Me: ‘Your mother and your father went to Loveland in America and had your brother?’

‘Yes…it’s a state.’

I literally couldn’t teach for five mins I was laughing so much!



Me: ‘Does a penguin lay eggs?’

Kid 1: ‘No.’

Kid 2: ‘YES!!And daddy penguin sit on egg like this’…Mimics sitting on an egg.

Me: ‘Right, very good.’

Kid 3: ‘Yes, and mommy penguin goes to the nightclub and eats fish.’



Usually the kids aren’t allowed out of the classroom during class as they run about the school.

Naughtiest kid in my class (boy, 11): ‘Teacher, can I go to the bathroom?’

‘No, you cannot.’

‘But teacher, man’s important part will bomb!!!!’

I was laughing so much, I just let him go!


For more, check out:

The Wall of Quotes

‘I am Mommy Monster!’ – May 25th 2012

‘Why do you have tadpoles in my class?’ – May 18th 2012

‘He looks smart.’ – May 11th 2012

‘His skin is bling bling?’ – May 4th 2012

‘Relax!’ – April 27th 2012

‘She is like wi-fi!’ – April 20th 2012

‘Dino-Aliens!! I KNEW IT!!’ – April 13th 2012

‘It’s so bling bling.’ – April 6th 2012

‘She’s a ninja!’ – March 30th 2012

‘A Hand Jacket!’ – March 23rd 2012

‘The Dinosaurs Ate Each Other.’ – March 17th 2012

‘I’ll Give You A Sticker.’ – March 9th 2012

‘SURPRISE DINOSAURS!’ – March 2nd 2012

‘He’s The King!’ – February 24th 2012