wee fan base?

24 Mar

Well, I received a couple of pieces of advice about what I was asking in my last post, so thank you!  I think my fan base has shrunk though, so it is time for a giveaway!  Okay, so the first time I get, hmmm, 15! comments on a post (and real! comments, indicating the commenter’s complete and utter understanding of the inner workings of my brain), I will hold a draw from those comments.  The winner gets – wait for it – many back issues of the New Yorker! (Well, whatever issues I have finished since I started re-subscribing in January.  But since I think 15 comments might not ever happen or may happen in about a year, that could be a whole lot of issues!)  And I shall mail it, postage paid, to anywhere in North America and maybe the UK and parts of China.  And Russia.  And Italy.  It is a great incentive, people, so tell your friends, relatives, colleagues (even those you may not like), people you meet on an airplane, in jail, walking down the street, in Home Depot, at Ikea and etc. 

Alrighty then. Well, I am now firmly rooted back in the ranks of the unemployed.  My last day was fine – long though as there were 11! ‘final performances’ from the different classes.  On the last day of the session, each class performs a song, etc, to the others. We were all jammed tight into a room at Pond Cafe at UBC.  There were about 170 Japanese students,2 Chinese students, teachers and other staff.  The performances are at lunchtime followed by, well, lunch.  So yes, there is such thing as a free lunch  My class had combined with another and they practiced singing and dancing to “Party Anthem” by LMFAO all week.  I had never even heard of this song before this but then again, my preferences run to ABBA (whose music most of the students know!).  Luckily they didn’t sing all of the words nor understand them (good thing, yikes!) but they had fun. The dancing included flips and such.  In another group, one young man dressed up as a woman – dress, make-up and all, while they all sang a ballad type thing.  The students went crazy for all of the performances so that was nice.  Afterwards, there was sobbing and hugging and “I miss you” to each other and all sorts.  Sniffle.  I was very very proud of my 16 students- I had them give little speeches after I gave them their certificates (in the class earlier).  A couple said they were very shy but that their classmates had really helped them to come out of their shells.  They really, really bonded in the 4 weeks – constantly going out together on weekends and after school.  It was amazing to see as none of them had known each other before.  This particular group was not at all into learning in the classroom and some would fall asleep if I talked for longer than three minutes (well, yeah).  We were to focus more on activities, contact assignments and field trips because what they really want is to get to know Canada.  We had themes each week of course and also many in class activities.  But lots of field trips – Science World, W. 4th Avenue, etc.

They all very sweetly signed two Vancouver postcards for me and my favourite comment was this:  “In my image, you’re soosoo much talking!  You look like strong mother.  Thank you!”  And this one.  Apparently what he means by ‘tension’ is like high excitement but really, it works either way (ha):  “Your tension was always high..  Your class was funny.  Thank you.”

Those kinds of things are priceless and I save them.  Oh okay and this:  “Karen!!!!!!!  I had a great time in your class.  You are sooo funny and soo kind.  Thank you so much!  I love you!!!”

I think that this is the kind of feedback that we all need.  Wouldn’t it be nice if your boss wrote you a note – “You talk so much!  You must be a strong mother!  Thank you!” “You are so kind! You are so funny!  I love you!” 

That would be awesome.

Teaching ESL is interesting because you can also get other kinds of comments like:  “She terrible teacher.”  “I learn nothing and hate the very marrow of her horrific being.  Why does she exist on the earth other than to torment me?”  “I want to take a box of cereal, open it and dump it on her head.”  Now, for my more literal thinking of the wee fan base, these comments never actually existed but serve as examples as to what can happen.

Hmmm.  Unemployed again.  Here we go.  I am now, however, trained again to wake up early, so this could mean even more of the day to have to deal with in an unemployed way.  Sigh.  The weather is thankfully turning and becoming nicer but I do hear that it is to rain all next week.  Hmmm.  Of course I am looking for work and the like but that doesn’t take the whole day.  I shall go back to Tuesday morning/early afternoon mindfulness meditation, to my Monday evening writing group and etc.  But still . . . eeek.   I was luckily able to save a month’s worth of rent during my UBC time, so that is nice.  But eeek.


So, I shall also return to updating the blog more regularly.  Free New Yorkers people!  Tell your friends!  Oh and in the latest issue, there’s a great article on how Rihanna’s music comes into being.  It was fascinating to learn about what others bring to her music (the lyrics, the sound, the everything) before she even sees it.  A ‘top-liner”, in Rihanna’s case, a young woman who comes up with the lyrics, does nearly all of the work.  Now this young woman wants to get her own music out there but apparently that is uncommon and difficult.  She came from poverty and now makes millions as a top liner for Rihanna and others but may never be able to make it on her own.  Times have changed!  I’m pretty sure ABBA wrote all of their own music.  This New Yorker could be yours!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

One Response to “wee fan base?”

  1. Thomas March 25, 2012 at 3:48 pm #

    Welcome back Karen! I think you know as much, BUT that is the key to retaining and building a “fan” base, new content, daily at the most. Watch your fan base grow 🙂
    I realize that working, (gee, I do remember those days) leaves little time for extras like a blog but now you have, unfortunately, that time.

    Finding work around here, as you know, is murder. Lately I have been thinking that I should storm a business and hold a manager hostage and not let him or her go until they give me a job however I don’t believe this would work although I may get my name in the news.

    With just a few weeks left of EI I begin a new approach this coming week. I start getting in people’s face’s. I’m going to do it “old school”. Print off as many resumes as my printer can handle and start shopping it around, calling people on a regular basis, meeting managers etc etc etc. Even when an ad says don’t contact, I will contact. I am really starting to get pissed off with this entire process. Quite literally it isn’t what you know , it is who you know, we’ve all heard that one before and after all this time looking for work I believe it is the absolute truth.

    The sitting at home behind the computer applying on-line thing has pretty much gotten me nowhere and I believe other’s in the same boat can relate. It just isn’t happening.
    I have absolutely nothing to lose by calling , meeting and greeting.

    Time to lace up the shoes and get out there, may need to take an umbrella with me this week. Have a good one.

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