Wednesday, September 26, 2007

I can be your

Today was one of those culturally amusing days. The entertainment began with our practice for the opening ceremonies of the sports meet. Most of the team is marching in with the other foreign language department teachers (mostly Chinese teachers). For the past couple weeks I've been suppressing grins and chuckles as I walk past the freshmen enduring military training. This afternoon the joke was on me. All of the teachers were lined up in ranks according to height. I was in the back row in between Sarah and a Chinese teacher. We proceeded to the basketball courts to practice our marching. Due to the fact that all instructions were in Chinese, I was feeling in a little over my head--especially since the person giving commands was far away and I couldn't hear him very well. I was able to get the marching down pretty quick...but once they threw turns into the mix confusion took over. The commands for left turn, right turn, turn all the way around have similar sounds. Left is zuo (think zo), right is you (think yo) and turn around is ho. From a distance it was easy (at least for me) to get these mixed up. Thank goodness I don't understand criticisms yet! Anyways, we had a fun forty-five minutes learning to march. Tomorrow is our dress rehearsal--we pick up our matching track suits (our whole reason for to come), change, and then practice. It should be pretty awesome.

Tonight, Wu, Mark and I were the honorable judges of a speech contest. As to be expected, this contest was a showcase of speeches found who knows where (most likely the internet) performed by very nervous students. Topics included, but were not limited to, "I love English", "My Olympics dream", "Game on, game off", "Help others, help yourself", and my favorite topic, "The English over animals". My favorite performance of the evening (not in the high-scoring sense, but for pure entertainment value), was a male student who recited the lyrics to Marc Anthony's song "Hero". Just picture in your mind a Chinese male student reciting in a monotone, "I can be your hero"...long pause..."baby" (accompanied by a hand pump). And yes, the hand pump was used whenever he said baby. Recalling that image is sure to bring a smile to my face for quite some time.

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