Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Because Sometimes You Are Wrong

So I mentioned that I spent the post-graduation drinking party trying to keep up with the art teacher. I misspoke; he's actually the math teacher who is an artist on the side. He's the teacher I sat next to last year, and we got along rather well. Then this year I suffered the painful delusion that he hated me for disrupting his class by making our English games too effing loud (they were pretty loud, but I was happy about this.. the class in question is normally that blank-faced staring type problem). When I say suffered, I really did. It bothered me a lot. I really want people to like me, especially people that seem interesting or cool, or whom I respect. I used to tiptoe around and avoid looking at him or getting in his way. My cabinet of extra crap is behind his desk (my old desk location), so I would actually wait until he left the office to go and get stuff out of there.

Because I didn't want to feel the burning wrath of him hating on me, of him judging the fact that I wasn't a "real" part of this school, or that I wasn't good to the Mice class, or that I didn't work as hard as the other teachers... all of which are kind of true and are serious insecurities I have had about my job. The Mice class has been a thorn in my English-speaking side since day one, specifically because of their silence and lack of motivation. For this reason, I was always a lot more likely to hang out with the other kids whenever I had the chance. I didn't go after the Mice.. in some ways I let them go, because the Cats and Frogs actually appreciated me. A little. But what I should have done, were I a more dedicated person, would have been to reach out to them more, and work harder for them and with them.

And why are we paying so much to have these western youngsters sit around studying kanji and blogging all day?!

Anyway. After a while I knew I must be imagining things, but I went right on imagining them until the last drinking party when I sat across from him and in my whiskey, confessed that I thought he didn't like me! I also asked about the girl in all the new paintings at the pizza place, because there are a bunch of the same girl, and last time I was at the pizza place, we speculated as to who she might be, and what significance.

So I was happily reassured after his insistence that he doesn't in fact hate me. He said I should visit his house and that his wife makes a mean pasta. Sometimes your paranoia is all in your head.

On the Monday after a drinking party, usually no one speaks about anything that was done or said.. it's like enkai exist in a parallel universe, or in Vegas. Everything just stays there. My memory had begun to function as such. I was totally caught off guard when Monday morning rolled around and he clapped me on the shoulder with a comment about my drinking strength. I blinked, then laughed with a grave "I lost."

Later, though he stopped by my desk to ask a question that was really gratifying. He asked if I would sit as a model. And I mean, I know it's kind of because I am foreign and I have interesting features that are probably fun to try to capture, but I've never had anyone ask if I would sit and be the subject of scrutiny, and I'm vain enough to be really happy along with nervous. I am always curious about how others see me, and how it differs from what I see. The girl in the paintings at the pizza place has a sort of serious, sometimes almost creepily intense look to her. I wonder if that's his style of painting, or if it's something of her personality he's getting. I wonder how I'll turn out. It'll be Monday kind of all morning, and then we'll all have lunch (pasta) after the session. So once that happens, I'll let you know how it went.

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