age | e

in front of you in line alphabetically since 2006

Wednesday, November 29, 2006


Last week, 4.B and I were discussing whether or not it's ethical to buy and sell wild animals. Part of the discussion inevitably went to our pets---if Tereza says we shouldn't buy giraffes, why should we buy dogs and cats?

Lucka piped in at this point.

"I've got a big spider. It's as big as my hand."


"Actually, we have 17 spiders like this."

No way. You're joking. You mean you have 17 tarantulas in your house?

"No, I'm not joking! And we live in an apartment."


"And when I was younger, my father used to sell them like a business. We used to have 300 little tarantulas in our apartment."

You really are joking now.

Well, Lucka wasn't joking about any of it. And today she brought me a small (keep in mind: small for a tarantula) tarantula skin to prove it. I guess tarantulas shed their skins like snakes. She told me I could keep it. "Thanks," I said, "but eww."

I almost gave my officemate a heart attack when I told her the story. Pray for Alena ;-)


Monday, November 27, 2006

the country ball

Surprises never cease in Central Europe!

Last Tuesday we, along with all of our fellow teachers at Arabská were invited to a Country Ball at a nearby pub to learn some "traditional dances" and have a good time together as a staff. By "traditional dances" we assumed that they meant traditional Czech folk dances. Imagine our surprise when what we were learning was actually American square dances and the Virginia Reel. Go figure.

Two visiting American teachers from Chicago, also there, though it would be country line dancing. I'm not sure who was farther off.

It hurt the overall attendance that it went late on a school night, but we had a great time.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006


So my colleague and officemate Alena gave me some great advice yesterday. She had noticed my cell phone sitting on my desk while I was grading papers and had seen that I'd written "Ahojky" as a greeting on the main screen.

When I wrote Ahojky there last year, I took it to be a cute way of saying "Hi there!" in Czech. Well, she said, yes. But it's also associated (by stereotype) with ditzy teenage girls and homosexual men.

So yesterday I changed my greeting to "Nazdááár," which is a significantly more macho way of saying "Hi there!"

Perhaps I'm compensating. The jury is out.


Monday, November 13, 2006

a native master

I received a great compliment from a student this morning.

I like english very much and i'm glad that I could be learning it with a
native master. Thanx for all.

In English, it seems, my belt is black.


Thursday, November 02, 2006


Maybe we were tipped off.

A few weeks ago, our building manager posted a notice on the main entrance, announcing a "surprise" water inspection would happen on what is now last Tuesday. It struck both of us that this notice circumvented the nature of purpose of surprises, but apparently "surpise" wasn't the point, and last Tuesday our water was shut off. Surprise!

Actually, the notice did it's job, and we were prepared with jugs and pots and half of a bathtub full of water, ready for a dry day.

Being that we're both in the same neighborhood, our school was also "surprised" with a no-water day, so regular classes were canceled, and everybody had fieldtrips. Chrissy and I and two of our fellow English teachers went with three classes to see a musical version of George Orwell's Animal Farm.

Probably the only real surprise of the day was this: you can actually do Animal Farm as a musical. Actually, it was pretty good. But---and there's no surprise here---the songs have yet to leave our head. Fortunately, reading about it on a blog will save you from catching the tune.