Wednesday, April 14, 2004

Wednesday Madness Continues:
Cleanup in Room 9013

I spent three hours in a room with dried dogshit in the corner. I teach in this room, Old Science Building Room 9013 (basement level), every Wednesday from 11AM to 2PM. The room is a fairly standard (if dilapidated) Korean university classroom: white board at the front, individual desks in some disarray on the tiled floor. There's also a podium at the front, and below the whiteboard is a raised platform for the teacher. The platform is a rectangular parallelepiped about four or five inches high and is as wide at the whiteboard (about 10 or 12 feet, I guess). It juts out from the wall about four feet, which makes it look like a tiny little stage-- performance space for a mime.

The dogshit in question was parked in a corner between one side of the raised platform and the whiteboard wall. It was dry, crumbled, and odorless. I wouldn't have noticed it if I hadn't looked over and down while standing on the platform (in fact, I missed it entirely during my first class of the day at 11AM). I debated whether I should tell my students about it; I decided not to, because everyone would have been thoroughly grossed out. Last week, we had a huge, fat bumblebee fly into the room; the students were troupers-- no one freaked-- and the bee eventually either flew out a cracked window or settled into the shadows. We didn't hear from it after the first hair-raising ten minutes of class. To burden my students with dogshit woes after they'd weathered a marauding bee would have been too much, so I decided to gamble that no one else would notice the shit.

It was the kind of shit that's excreted by those itty-bitty dogs that so many Koreans favor these days, the ones you see in boxes and baskets, being sold in subway stations alongside rabbits small enough to live inside my ass. East Asia is a haven for miniaturization; it was only a matter of time before miniaturized dogshit would make an appearance. No one else noticed the crap, so we got through the day without a hitch. I do wonder, though, who the hell would allow their dog to take a shit inside a school building, and what a dog would be doing inside a school building in the first place.

My students have a battery of midterms next week, so all classes are cancelled. Except for my private classes, I'm free the whole week.

Speaking of battery, I watched the video (see Jeff's link) of the male teacher's abuse of the female student with a mixture of revulsion and horror. Then I began reading the comments on various blogs, some to the effect that this isn't an uncommon occurrence. Jesus Christ. That teacher'd better not get near me, because I'll fucking put my fist through the motherfucker's head. Sorry to say it, but if, in two weeks, we hear that this guy has gone and thrown himself off a 15th-floor balcony after being hounded and harassed for his misdeeds, I won't be shedding any tears. Good riddance, asshole.

How was the video of the incident taken? I imagine some enterprising student was using their cell phone's camera to record everything. Good for them.

And while we're on the topic of men abusing women: thanks to the discovery of that Seung Sahn sex scandal link, I think I know what I'll be blogging about for Buddhism Thursday.

Also on Jeff's blog, Plunge comments (as did the Air Marshal, privately) that the Snopes site (devoted to debunkings) says the sand spider pic is undetermined (i.e., unverified).

Owen comments on my chocolate obsession and tells me I need to get a piece of Asse.


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