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The Present





July 10th, 2009

When your heart decides it no longer wants to do its job properly, it feels a little bit like a betrayal of trust.    Maybe you didn't always get as much exercise as you should have or you gave in and ate that hamburger, but overall you did a pretty good job of taking care of your heart.  And the rest of your body hasn't decided to defect, no matter how well or poorly you've treated it.  Your muscles are still propelling your legs forward, your stomach is still digesting its food, your liver is still filtering your blood, despite all the runs you didn't take, the ice cream you ate, the gin you drank.

Really, it's a little ungrateful.  Even though the brain is doing most of the heavy lifting for the body, the heart gets the credit.  The Egyptians believed the soul resides in the heart.  So did Aristotle.  After all, the heart is an exciting organ.  Anyone who has ever seen one of those gruesome surgery shows know that the heart is the most vital of the vital organs, pumping and beating and flip-flopping like a fish.  There will never be a song called "Total Eclipse of the Brain."  The brain is the most undramatic of organs, a quivering mass of greyish pink goo, more like jello than a little engine.  Everyone has experienced sensations of the heart, a rapid heart beat at the end of a hard work out, the rushing, swooping feeling of a heart in love.  The only sensation most people get from their brain is a headache.

So what gives, heart?  Everyone loves you, yet you're so quick to disappoint so many of us.

The first time I noticed something had gone wrong was while I was sitting in one of my favorite Chinese restaurants with my boyfriend James, waiting for our order.  I started to feel...off.  Suddenly, it all came on at once, a dip and then a rush to my head.  For a split second I had time to contemplate what would happen if I passed out right there in the restaurant; how everyone would come running, how they'd offer to call an ambulance, how I'd sit up and say, "oh no, I'm fine.  Just got a little lightheaded there."  I didn't pass out.  Instead, I was left feeling flushed and nauseated, so I excused myself to get some fresh air, severely alarming James in the process.  When I returned from my short walk to the car and back, I sat and watched James finish his meal, feeling slightly guilty for having ruined what was to be a perfectly nice meal.  (I had previously ruined a nice meal a few weeks earlier by spectacularly vomiting in a parking lot.)  Something was off, I wasn't sure what, but the walking had made me feel better, whereas sitting was making me slightly queasy, so we drove home silently and then took a walk through the neighborhood.  It was a pleasant evening, and we laid on our backs in the park, watching the birds go by.   We briefly contemplated what caused some exhaust trails from airplanes to disappear almost immediately, while others stuck around for longer.  Verdict: we still have no idea.  A dog owner threw a ball near us, not realizing we were there, and we almost got wiped out by a golden retriever.  All was well and we returned to my apartment.

At home, I puked up all the food I hadn't eaten.  By midnight, my heart was racing again and would not quit.  Even though I was laying in bed, I felt like I had just run a marathon.  I made James feel my heart over and over, silently hoping that he would say, "No, you're crazy.  Your heart feels perfectly normal."  But he didn't and it wasn't, so I made the difficult decision to go to the emergency room.  In the waiting room I whispered "I love you" to James, partially out of the morbid fear that if I didn't say it right then, I wouldn't get to say it ever.  It was the first time I'd said the words out loud, but the fear of something being catastrophically wrong with me outweighed the fears of saying the "big three" words.  He told me he loved me too, but we later essentially pretended these initial "i love you"s had never been said and had our own first "I love you"s later on, when not spoken under duress.  Funny but true: the thing that made me realize I loved him simply because I did rather than because I was scared was seeing him win my little sister from Big Brothers/Big Sisters a giant stuffed pig at Worlds of Fun and then proceeding to cart it all the hell over the park.

But I digress.  It is impossible to convey how boring it actually is to be run through tests for your heart without actually boring you in the process, so I won't try.  Just trust me; it wasn't half as exciting as it could have been.  There were definitely no George Clooneys running around throwing out awesome medical terminology.  I had blood work done, was given some fluids, and an EKG was taken.  Meanwhile, I was hooked up to a heart monitor and blood oxygen monitor, which was actually the most stressful part of the whole experience-watching my heart rate yo-yo up and down and wondering if a heart rate over 100 meant that the nurses were going to rush in and shock me into oblivion with those paddles.  (I am exaggerating.  A little.)  My EKG was "normal."  Normal, the glorious medical opposite of "abnormal."  As for my blood test, my thyroid levels were normal and some other stuff was normal too, I forget exactly what because I was reveling in the glory of "normal."  My potassium levels were a little low, but apparently not low enough to cause heart palpitations.  "Eat a banana," the doctor told me.  Other than that, the diagnosis was *shrug* and follow up with your primary care doctor.

So James and I went home at something like 3 a.m., tired and defeated.  I would like, right now, to point out how great and supportive James was and continues to be, through all this nonsense.  A lesser man would have definitely been headed for the hills by now.  In the morning I did the only logical thing I could do: called in a half sick day at work to catch up on sleep, bought and ate two bananas, and found a primary care doctor through my insurance to set up an appointment.  

In my boundless optimism, I expected the doctor to blame the palpitations on stress and some of the intestinal issues I'd recently been having.  He did.  Turns out he was (probably) wrong - what exactly is causing my problems is still unclear, but most likely resides in my heart itself.  My disfunctional, ungrateful heart.


November 1st, 2008

(no subject)

I'm participating in National Novel Writing Month this year. The goal is to write 50,000 words in one month. Since I don't use LJ for anything else, I think I'm going to post about my word count on here and maybe put up excerpts. Hopefully that will keep me motivated.

Right now I'm in a coffee shop trying to get some work done, but it's not working out very well. It is not a good sign to have writer's block on Day 1. Maybe part of the reason that I'm having trouble writing is because I'm so distracted by the group of people at the table next to me. They are some sort of weird third party group who are planning a protest against the Federal Reserve. There was also talk about the Amero.

Some other choice quotes:
"I wrote a song inspired by Ron Paul. It's called 'Freedom.'"
"I should have brought Leslie in. She's in my trunk."
"We could burn our stimulus checks in front of the IRS."
"Everybody thinks I'm a closet John McCain supporter!"
"Those people are totally obsessed with Barack Obama." (After talking about how everyone should only vote third party candidates ever.)

One of the guys just gave me a flyer that says the following:

End the Fed
The FED is a PRIVATE bank controlled by unelected officials.
The FED charges the US Government a fee to print OUR money.
That fee is then paid by YOUR Federal Income Tax!
There is NO LAW stating the (sic) you HAVE to pay a Federal Income Tax.

Good luck with not paying your income tax, weirdos.

August 30th, 2008

(no subject)

Someone outside of my apartment has been yelling "HEY! YO! HEY! HOW ARE YA!  I'M ERIC! HEY! HEY! HOW ARE YA!" for the last two hours.  Some sort of sale and/or festival or just a crazy person?  You decide.

July 16th, 2008

Meet Moose

This is Moose.

July 2nd, 2008

(no subject)

Life is tumultuous. 
Caleb and I broke up.  He is an idiot.
I am an idiot, for other reasons.
I should start going to church or something.


June 26th, 2008

(no subject)

I think I have an ulcer.  How gross is that?  

June 17th, 2008

Here comes the bride...

It's June, which means that everybody and their brother is getting married.  Luckily for me, all of my marrying friends live far enough away that I can justify not going to the wedding.  Next Saturday, however, one of my best friends from high school is getting married 2 hours away from here.  Being that I was originally supposed to be in the wedding party and it's a short drive away, I can't really excuse my way out of this one.  I love my friend.  I think her fiancee is great.  I'm glad that they are getting married-they are a great couple and will be very happy together. 

But I hate weddings.  Weddings seem like such a waste of money, time and everyone's patience.  Let me make it clear: I am not anti-marriage.  I'm anti-wedding.  The money alone seems tremendously wasteful.  The marriage industry has managed to make everything unbelievably expensive: invitations, cake, flowers, dresses.  All because of the prefix "wedding."  A batch of birthday invitations are relatively inexpensive, but slap some gold embossing on that shit and call them wedding invitations and suddenly the price is through the roof.  And have you ever met a calm and collected bride-to-be?  Hell no.  People getting married always seem to be totally stressed out.  Talk to anyone getting married in the next two months and all they can talk about is how much time it takes to plan a wedding.  Why do you think there is such a big market for wedding planners?  Note to all wedding planners out there: your job is not hard.  Planning a wedding is pretty much just making a series of reservations and orders.  Any dumbass bride and groom with a telephone and some free time can plan their wedding.  But they don't want to.  Because planning a wedding sucks.

Obviously, this post means nothing.  People will continue to have abso-fucking-lutely ridiculous poofy expensive weddings because that's what they they are supposed to have.  Yet I'm still annoyed that I have to participate in the obligatory dyed-to-match shoe wearing and funky chickening and champagne drunkening.  When/if I get married, you are not invited.  I am taking the money and going to Egypt or India or Cambodia.  And I'll still probably save money.

May 9th, 2008


A bee somehow managed to get trapped in my bathroom today.  A BEE!

April 28th, 2008

An ode to me

I get up at 7:30 for work every morning.  I have a little ritual where I turn off my alarm and stay in bed for about  5 extra minutes (eyes open, usually), thinking about all the things I need to do that day, what I need to take to work, what I'll do after work, etc.  Today I managed to fall asleep within five minutes with the alarm clock sitting on my chest.  I woke up at 8:32 and I usually leave for work at around 8:40.  But I still made it to work on time!

The reason I think I fell back asleep is that I actually have a life again.  I'm working 9-5 at the International Relations Council and trying my best.  I've been going out at least a couple of nights a week with friends.  I've been dating someone (not a boyfriend per se.....yet).  And I've been going out every weekend and buying more and more things to fill my apartment which is finally becoming not totally empty.  Even when I'm not "busy" I've still been occupied with other things.  I got a library card and have been reading a lot because my office is across the street from the library. And I've spent a decent amount of time organizing and cleaning my apartment.  It's likely that I've been tired all this time but have been too busy to notice, and it came to the unfortunate conclusion of oversleeping.  Oh well.  I'd rather be tired and happy than well-rested and bored.

On a side note, I think it's really unfair that couples who are getting married can have a wedding registry to get all of this new stuff for their future house when most couples these days live together before they get married and probably already own household items.  I think single gals like me with no furniture should be able to have a new house registry and people should feel obligated to send ME a toaster and wine glasses and a blender.

February 22nd, 2008


I got new glasses.  They are plastic.  And black.  Next thing you know I'll be cutting myself and listening to My Chemical Romance or whatever it is that emo kids listen to nowadays.  But I like them.

I applied to that CELTA program in Berlin after a ridiculously long application and long-distance interview.  I was accepted, but then decided not to go because I'm an indecisive wuss and I just couldn't decide if that's what I want to do right now or not.  But my acceptance is valid for 3 years, so I can change my mind later on down the road.  One of my best friends talked me out of culinary school, and I think he's right.  (He also thought I should have gone to Germany, and maybe he's right about that too.  Not sure yet.)

Right now I have seven applications out to jobs that I think I could enjoy doing.  Hopefully one of them will work out and I can finally get my life back together.

February 7th, 2008

Decisions, decisions

Despite my post a couple of weeks ago, about not knowing what is right for me, I'm starting to feel better about things.  I don't know what I was so freaked out about before.  I'm young and can do whatever the hell I feel like.  I still don't know exactly what I am going to do, but there are basically three options I need to decide between.

1. Get my CELTA in Berlin.  This is a three week intensive course which would give me certification to teach English as a foreign language basically anywhere in Europe.  Pros: Live and study in Europe, opportunity to travel.  Cons: Sort of expensive and far away from family.

2. Go to pastry school.  This one might come as a surprise to some of you, but I have always wanted to make and decorate cakes.  Pros: Learn something I've always wanted to learn about, potentially fun line of work.  Cons: I'm not really sure I would be good at it, the pain of finding the perfect program and then paying for it.

3. Continue looking for office work in the States.  Pros: Could be a great job out there that I just haven't found yet, can start settling down.  Cons: Looking for jobs fucking sucks.

What to do, what to do.  I'm reading the massive tome that is the Truman biography by McCullough and Harry Truman didn't get married until he was 35 and didn't even figure out that politics was what he wanted to do in life until he was 40.  So I'm going to assume that I'm simply following in the footsteps of a former president.  And things worked out just fine for him. 

January 22nd, 2008


I have a strange question. 

In America/Canada etc., there are certain common dog-specific names.  Things like Rover and Rex.  What do people in other countries commonly name their dogs?  I've googled around and haven't found anything really useful, although I've found lots of lists of common dog names in English.

I also found a list for Japan.
Common names for dogs in Japan:
1. Momo (meaning "peach")
2. Koro (a dog-specific name)
3. Lucky
4. Nana (a girl's name, not specific to dogs)
5. Hana (also a girl's name, meaning "flowers")
6. Taro (a boy's name)
7. John
8. Cocky
9. Bell (specific to dogs)
10. Chibi (applied to lots of pets, meaning "small" or "petite")

But what about other countries?  Thoughts?  Links?

January 16th, 2008


This weekend I went to Lawrence to visit two of my best friends, Aaron and Drew.  As you can see from the following picture (one of only two I took the whole night because I was too busy drinking, I guess), Aaron is a lumberjack and Drew is a guido.

Exhibit A

We to several different bars, but the second that we went to displayed artwork on the walls.  The table we were at had a name plate of a painting or drawing titled "Date Night," but alas!  The artwork wasn't there!  Apparently someone had bought it or taken it down for some other reason.  So we decided that we would rectify the situation by putting up our own artwork titled "Date Night."  Enjoy.

Exhibit B
Panel 1: "I really liked your facebook profile."
Panel 2: "...and if you compare Naruto and Pokemon..."
Panel 3: "Wanna come back to my place?"
Panel 4: "Fuckin' Robocop!  Call me!"

The bar can thank me later.

In retrospect, I think I was pretty stoned that night.  Later I rode a bicycle in a skirt.  And had an entire conversation consisting of nothing but the word "robocop."  Hmm.

January 15th, 2008

Give and take

When speaking of a wedding, the phrase "giving the bride away" creeps me out. 

January 8th, 2008


the office
My life feels a little strange right now, but I'm not sure exactly how to explain it.  Every day I wake up feeling like I'm waiting for something to happen, but it just won't happen. 

I'm living with my parents while I look for a job, but nothing is turning up.  Maybe I'm being too picky, but nothing feels right so far.  I can't complain about my life overall, I have had opportunities to do some truly cool things, but all of those things happened as a result of doing what feels right.  When I graduated from college, I pretty much hated all colleges I visited, but William Jewell came along and I just knew it was the right place to go.  My junior year of college I was supposed to go to Ireland for a semester, but for money-related reasons I wasn't able to go, but to my surprise, I wasn't disappointed.  Not going to Ireland felt right, and lo and behold, about a week after the Ireland thing fell through, I had a job in Washington DC.  Once I graduated, I applied around for some jobs, but wasn't feeling thrilled about any of them.  Then the Korea thing fell into my lap and it felt right.  When I went on my little vacation last month, I originally thought I wanted to go to Costa Rica, but then, out of nowhere, Germany came into my head and I knew it was the right place to go.  Writing it out like this makes it seem really crazy, but it's truly the way I live my life.  I get this feeling...it's not exactly an emotion or an idea, it's almost a physical sensation, located somewhere between my heart and my stomach.  It's impossible to describe exactly.

But back to my point.  I wish I knew what was supposed to happen to me next.  In a way, I feel like I'm letting everyone down.  I've always done pretty well in whatever endeavor I get myself into; I was a good student and a good employee.  So people around me seem to have these expectations that I should have some important job or be doing something big and important, but I'm not.  To make matters worse, I recently submitted two stories to McSweeney's quarterly.  Being published in their quarterly has been a dream of mine for a long time.  I emailed the stories and about four days later the email bounced back to me.  I checked the email address twice and it is correct.  I'm sure there is some logical explanation, like their server was down or something else totally rational, but it just feels like a bad omen.

All this nonsense is making me feel weird and emotional and irrational.  I need to move on to the next stage of my life, but if I just take the first thing that comes along, I will be miserable.  I know this.  But being stuck in Great Bend with nothing to do is also making me crazy.  Just writing this all out is making me feel even more crazy, because now all my crazy is just hanging out there for anyone to see.  Tonight on the news I saw this story about some desert town in New Mexico or Arizona that flooded and then the flood waters all froze.  And of course nobody expected it because deserts don't just go around flooding every day, and the weather hasn't typically been below freezing.  For some reason, that particular story made me feel really weird and uneasy.  It's like things in the world are happening that I can't categorize into my brain.

Forgive me if none of this makes any sense.  It all makes sense in my head, so maybe that's where I should keep it.

December 16th, 2007


the office
I promised you bitches some stories about my vacation in Germany, so I have come bearing stories.  Most of the things I did were not that interesting in and of themselves.  I did quite a few traditional touristy things like the museums and castles.  I also went to some less touristy museums like the Medical History Museum and the Erotik Museum.

The first thing I found interesting about traveling in Germany was the realization that my mind had actually stored away a fair amount of German from when I took it in high school.  All in all, I probably know more German than I do Korean, and I lived in Korea for an entire year.  And I found that Germans were generally much more supportive of my shitty German than Koreans were of my shitty Korean.  It's amazing how a tiny bit of encouragement can totally change your motivation.  I found it really hard to find the desire to study Korean, but being in Germany for two weeks has sort of made me want to try to pick up with my German studies again.  As a result, I'm thinking of trying to find an ESL job in Germany instead of going back to Korea.  I'll probably continue to look for jobs in both countries, but we'll see what ends up happening.

But really, Germany was all about the people.  I met so many interesting, cool, and/or weird people, especially in the hostels. 

The first leg of my vacation was in Berlin, and I stayed in a really great, friendly hostel.  One night a guy walked into the dorm at the same time that I was walking to the bathroom in the middle of the night.  I asked him what time it was.  Based solely on this interaction, he struck up a conversation with me the next day and became subsequently obsessed with talking to me.  I found out he is from Chile but lives in Dublin and had been in Berlin for three weeks.  His bed was right in front of mine, and he slept naked except for a single sheet swathed across his groin, like some Biblical painting of Adam.  Every night he would loudly announce that he was going to the grocery store, disappear for three or more hours and then reappear with no groceries.  He woke me up at 5 or 6 a.m. to ask me if I wanted to go out and get a beer with him and then was confused when I sleepily replied that I didn't want to.  In that same hostel I met an Australian guy who went to the sex museum with me, thank goodness, because I didn't want to go there alone.  Except afterward he wanted to watch porn in one of those porno booths, so instead I entertained him with stories from when I used to work in the porn store.

Then I went to Bonn, where I met Sebastian aka
tuppe, which was really cool.  I accidentally fell asleep on the train on the way and ended up stuck at the airport so I was at first afraid that I made a terrible first impression.  I ended up having a great time because I discovered that he shares my love for useless trivia and strange conversations.  We discussed  what would happen if cats had opposable thumbs, for example.  He is also just a genuinely generous and nice guy, so three cheers for Sebastian!

After Bonn I went to Mainz, which I only went to for the Gutenberg Museum, because a museum devoted to the inventor of movable type makes the geek in me very very happy.  There wasn't quite as much English signage as I would have liked, but it was still worth the journey because I got to see some copies of the 42 line Bible (sadly not the original) and some other cool old books and printing presses.  Mainz was pretty, but not much to see there other than the museum, so I went to Wurzberg the next day.

Würzburg was gorgeous.  It was one of the prettiest towns I have ever been to.  Everything about it, even the residential areas, seemed very picturesque.  I went to a really big castle/royal residence place which has the world's biggest ceiling fresco above a staircase.  That made me laugh because it's an oddly specific "world's biggest..." to have.  The hostel in Würzburg was cheap and had free internet access, but it was also full of old guys.  One of them was in my room and kept trying to give me travel tips while I was trying to sleep.  I realize that he had the best of intentions, but seriously dude, if I'm in my bed it's sleeping time, not talking time.

Next, I went to Munich. My hostel in Munich was completely rank.  I was the only female there, which I think weirded out some of the guys.  I was in a full 10 bed room.  In two of the beds were a super old Russian guy and his son.  His son was a traveling magician and they had been living in that hostel for like three months.  There was also a hippie Belgian guy who was trying to learn German as his FIFTH language.  He was really nice and actually made me feel a lot more comfortable about being there.  The other guys were obviously a little uneasy about me being in their room, which I found funny, because it seems like if anyone would be uneasy it would be me.  They were super-
conscientious to the point of almost being annoying.  If I was in the room, they would suddenly be quiet and ask me if I needed to turn on the overhead light or if I wanted them to close the window, etc. etc.  I guess I shouldn't be complaining (although the room smelled like a stinky foot).

Before I came home, I did a little day trip to Füssen to see Neuschwanstein and Hohenschwangau castles.  Before I left for Germany, my dad told me that he wanted me to take a picture of a castle in the mountains for him.  Since Neuschwanstein is sort of "the" German castle, I thought I'd go.  On the train from Munich I met a group of five Korean tourists when I helped them figure out the train schedule.  Once we got up to the castles it had started snowing pretty hard.  A group of demon German children started throwing snowballs at each other which was amusing for a while until we got caught in the crossfire.  One of the Korean girls took a snowball pretty hard, so I tried to convince her to throw one back at them.  She wouldn't, but I enlisted the help of one of the Korean guys and we started throwing snowballs back.  We got a little too into it and I accidentally smacked a kid right in the face with one of the snowballs.  I felt bad about it for a few seconds, but then I got over it because he was obviously a total dirtbag who deserved it.

My journey ended there.  My flight back was fairly uneventful except that in the row next to me was the fattest man I have ever seen on an airplane.  He was so fat he needed a seatbelt extender and couldn't fit the tray table down because his gut was too big.  When Plato spoke of everything having an idea form, this guy is Plato's archetype of a fat guy.  Slobby, snoring, wearing a ripped and stained t-shirt.  That was a little annoying because he snored really loudly for the entire trip unless he was eating two (!) airline meals.

But I digress!  My trip to Germany was fantastic and I can't wait until I get the chance to go back.

December 10th, 2007

Sarah, Sarah, uber alles

So I'm in Germany.  It's pretty fucking awesome, I must say.  So far I've been in Berlin, Bonn, Mainz, Würzburg and I'm currently in Munich. Right now I'm in a disgusting hostel, but I figure staying in at least one gross place is part of the overall backpacking experience.  As long as they have a bed and no serial murderers, I'm okay with it.  I've had lots of interesting adventures since I've been here, so expect lots of pictures when I get back (on Thursday, boo).  I went to a sex museum in Berlin as well as one of those medical history museums with jars full of pickled babies with two heads.  Plus some of the usual touristy stuff, of course.  I've also managed to totally fuck up my ankle.  Not sure quite what's wrong with it or how I did it, but I'm hobbling around with it until I get back.  It's also been raining 80 percent of the time.  Despite fate's attempts to screw with me, I am having a great time.  So screw you, fate.

Watch for pictures and more fun stories soon!

November 11th, 2007


So I'm back in the States.  It's been pretty uneventful so far.  Things are going to pick up soon though.  I'm going to be in Kansas City this Wednesday-Sunday, then it will be Thanksgiving week.  After that I'm going to Germany/France for a couple of weeks, and then it will be Christmas, of course.  I hope to be back in Korea in mid-January, pending visa stuff.

But really, I just wanted to share some Halloween pictures with you.

October 20th, 2007


Seriously, people.  The Tokyo airport is wicked boring.

October 12th, 2007

You say goodbye, I say hello

Yesterday (Thursday) was my last real day of classes.  Today is a teacher's work day, which I am exempt from, and on Monday and Tuesday I get to train the new native teacher, but I'm not actually teaching.  Basically I'll just be able to hang out and make a nuisance of myself.  I'm going to try to catch the bus into Seoul on Wednesday and spend a few days there.  My flight leaves at 11 a.m. on Saturday yet I'm going to be arriving in Kansas City at 5:30 p.m. Saturday due to the magic of time zones.  I have two, yes two, layovers, so I will be traveling for over 16 hours all told, including a 3 hour stop in Tokyo.  I've never been to Japan, so maybe it will be quasi-entertaining as far as layovers go.

Anyway, my last day of classes was bittersweet.  I had all 5 of the "special" classes, which are the advanced students.  I've seen these classes either three or five days a week for the entire year.  So I've grown pretty attached.

My first class is called Apex, four rowdy boys and two quiet girls.  I had told them earlier in the week that I would be leaving soon, but it didn't really seem to register.  So yesterday I said to them, "Today is my last day."  The boys, being the little pains that they are, immediately began making a rukus, splitting the time between complaining about losing me and complaining about having to get a new teacher.  As I was occupied with calming them down, I hear the saddest little ragged intake of breath ever and see that one of my girls is absolutely bawling her eyes out at the thought of me leaving.  I admit it made me a little misty eyed.
Note the girl on the right, Sunny, who is still crying, and her friend Jenny who seems bemusedly sympathetic.  Then we have on the left Edward, the most disgusting boy in the world.  He spends most of his free time eating things, anything that fits in his mouth.  I caught him gnawing on the desk once.  Seriously.  And of course Brian, Luis and Sean, rowdy but adorable.

Then I had Flair.  When I first started teaching, another native teacher had them.  They were so terrible for her that she sometimes would CRY after teaching them.  So of course my boss decided to give them to me.  Thanks, boss!  But they ended up being a really fantastic class.  They already knew I was leaving.  One of my students made a card and sent it around the room for everyone to sign, which was cute.  I got such messages as "Good bye teacher.  See you letter."  and "Goodbye teacher.  Go to the America and everyday happy and healthy!"
I think this picture sums up the class pretty well.  We have the three girls, Julia, Grace and Siera, well behaved and cute.  We have Steve way in the back, not doing anything.  We have Charlie, Chad, Devin, and Oscar, the boys who are rowdy but reasonably controlled.  And we have Alex, James and Dylan who are apparently trying to kill each other.  Yep, just another day with Flair.

My third class was Genius, and they are my hands down favorite class ever.  They are smart and inquisitive and thoughtful about any topic given to them.  They hate the new teacher (and she isn't even here yet!) because she's not me.  I spoiled them a bit, and gave them lots of candy for the last class.  They are sad that I'm leaving, but they all talked about how happy they are that I am coming back to Korea again and they told me to say hello to my parents from them.

Back: Kelly, Samuel, Brandon, Tina, Gregory
Middle: Damian, Jessica, Alyssa, Cathy, Ryan (this picture accurately shows what he is like in real life: an insane blur)
Front: Melissa, Sierra, Danny, Alex, Julia
Don't you like their American flag pinwheels? 

Then came Zenith class.  I used to hate Zenith, but lately they've been doing better.  When I broke the news to them, they actually seemed to care a little bit more than I thought they would.  But they didn't seem too torn up about it.  Which is fine, because I'm not too torn up about not teaching them anymore either, hahaha.
Back: Kelly, Andy (he wore that orange shirt 3 out of 4 days this week), Amy, Susan
Middle: Shue, Janise, Lauren, Brandon (Brandon is evil.  Pure evil.  You can't tell in the picture, but he is.  Trust me on this.)
Front: David and Bryan

My last class was Prime.  I forgot to get a picture of them, but they would probably hate getting their picture taken anyway.  They are middle school students, so they're too cool for that sort of thing.  They're another class I'll miss.  I've consistently had them 5 days a week, so they've always felt like "my" class.  I gave a couple of the girls my Scrabble board.  Vincent is in that class, but he has my email address, so I'm sure I'll be hearing from him again.  I hope so anyway.  It would be interesting to know what becomes of him someday.  Hopefully he'll go to college in America.  He's too weird for Korea.

At the end of the day, my boss gave me a nice going away present.  She also gave me a present for my parents.  She's been very nice for the last month or so.  And she told me that she was sad that I was leaving!  Hmm...I don't know about that.  Maybe she really is.  Despite all of the complaining she's done, I think I've been a good teacher for her.  Good enough to make students cry at my departure anyway.
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