Monday, April 22, 2013

things I be a-doin' today

According to my blog's time stamp, it's Sunday, but here in Seoul, it's Monday morning. I've got a few things to do today:

1. Call John McCrarey's mother-in-law, who lives nearby, and drop by her place to pay my respects.

2. Call a Korean dude who is, from what I understand, looking for a private tutor, possibly for himself and/or for a group. Tom relayed this info to me and told me to call him "ASAFP." You can guess what the "F" means.

3. Buy new contact lenses. As I've noted, the process is much cheaper here than it is in the States. At a US-based Costco, which is supposed to be cheap, the eye test alone costs $90, and then I have to pay $160—plus wait three business days—for a year's supply of disposable contacts. In Korea, in December of 2006, I paid $60-some for a pair of yearly-wear contacts after waiting only fifteen minutes. Yes: $60 for both the eye test and the lenses. How nuts is that?

4. Meet Joe McPherson of ZenKimchi? I'm still working on this. Joe and I have exchanged phone numbers, and I've promised him a "test" text. We'll work it out from there.

5. Do a bit of shopping for the apartment.

I've got some other good folks to meet, probably later in the week. My buddy Charles has kindly invited me and Tom to dinner at his place, and friend/commenter Sperwer also wants to meet up at some point. I'm also hoping to have lunch with a former boss of mine. My biggest disappointment, though, is that I've tried to contact an old student of mine several weeks before I came to Korea, but because she's horrible at checking her email, she hasn't responded. Lame.

Another possible project in the pipeline is the prospect of employment at Angelo's school: Gacheon University in Seongnam, just outside of Seoul. You'll recall that I met Angelo, Tom's Canuck friend and ex-colleague, yesterday. He works at GU (strange... I normally reserve that abbreviation for Georgetown), pulls in a decent salary, works 12 hours a week and gets four to five months' paid vacation. There's a huge foreign staff at his school, which is run by one of the richest women in Korea—and the world. The work sounds about the same as, if not better than, work at Sungkyunkwan University (Tom's school), so I'm eager to throw my hat in the ring, assuming Gacheon U. is even hiring. Angelo says he'll have his ear to the ground.

I've also fired off my application for Seoul National University. Here's hoping they receive it and reply. In case they don't reply, however, I've noted in my email and my cover letter that I plan to visit their sorry asses on May 8, five days after the application deadline. I'm not on the peninsula for a month just so I can be strung along. I will see these people.

SNU's application had one interesting requirement: the applicant has to send in a full-blown course curriculum to prove s/he knows what s/he is talking about. So last night, despite being cross-eyed with jet lag, I drew up a full, 16-week curriculum on persuasive essay writing. I checked it over and found no typos, then fired my email off. Here's hoping I get a reply from SNU. Soon.

So that's the agenda for today, and the partial agenda for the coming week.


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