Monday, February 28, 2005

Job offer, but do I want it?

The original position that I was offered by the company I've been talking with didn't work out. This school thought that I was too young. They said that they wanted someone that was at least 25. Whatever, that's not a big difference. But the whole thing was starting to frustrate me. The company (I wont name it, since it would be really easy for it to be picked up in Google) said that they'd call me back soon with another position. Late last week, I didn't much care if they did or not, since I was frustrated with them. I whipped off a bunch of applications to some other companies that were advertising, and got a few bites, but today, the company (which will not be named) called me back with another offer. I don't have the details yet, except that it's at a private high school teaching 10th and 11th graders, with a total of 18 teaching hours a week. (That's full time)

But now I'm not sure if I want it. I had given up on my project to find a real job a few months ago because I couldn't find anything that I thought I could do. Everything I saw was a mid career position and/or required almost native level Japanese. But last night I talked to Ai's mom for a while about real jobs, and she's convinced me that there are plenty of jobs out there that require little more than me being young, capable of learning, and being a good english speaker. So I was looking forward to having a lot of time this month to look for a real job, but with the call today, I'm being forced to make the decision between a pretty good job now, but with little or no future, or starving for a bit while I look for a real job.

Saturday, February 19, 2005

Train Gropers (and Job Update!)

Laurie (disguised as Steve) sent me a question about an article Tokyo's 2004 record of 2,201 reported gropings on Tokyo trains.

No, I have never been a groper nor a gropie, but it is commonly know to be a problem. The Yamanote line, making a 45 minute loop around Tokyo, is the busiest line in Japan, and during the morning rush, thousands of people cram into each train. The trains are so packed in that if you didn't have your hands free when you got on the train, it can be very difficult to get them above your head to grab a handle, especially without inadvertently groping someone. I suppose it is the hope of gropers that their groping will be assumed to be accidental, or just ignored. From what I've ready, most gropings probably go unreported, because it is thought to be too troublesome to peruse it, or no benefit will come out of pursuing it anyway. Anecdotal stories suggest that many get away with anything from a slap or kick somewhere important, to a shout of "pervert" by the gropie. For those that are actually drug out of the train to a police box, a fine usually awaits.

Job Update

I got an update on my job Saturday afternoon. I passed the test that I had last weekend, and the sales people were quite happy with it, so this tuesday, they plan on selling me to the school. It sounds as if they feel confident that the school will want to meet me, so probably the following week I will go meet the school in person.

I still haven't decided when I will cancel my apartment contract. Since I have to cancel it 30 days in advance of my move-out day, I'd like to cancel it soon, (I hoped to do this yesterday) but the start and end dates of rental agreements are more flexible in Japan, so I may arrange it so that I have a few days to a week of overlap between the two to give me time to move my stuff. I might try to rent a truck, but I don't have a drivers license, and your can't use and international drivers license if you've been a resident for over 90 days, so I'd have to get a Japanese license in the next few weeks. Ai wont drive a truck either.

The last day of my job is Feb 28th, so I'll have a 3 week break. Maybe I'll try getting a driver's license.

Friday, February 18, 2005

To (a)Part(ment) or Not

Well, it seems like my job is getting closer, but it's only inching, or maybe even creeping. It's been over a month since I first sent in my resume, and I've had two interviews with the company so far. Last Saturday was a kind of test, after which I was told that there were two other people being considered for the position, and that they'd give me an update by the end of this week after the other two people had their second interview. Today I found out that the sales staff will be having a meeting on Tuesday, and that they'd be trying to sell me to the school sometime soon after that.

My biggest problem is that if I'm moving out of my apartment, I have to give one month notice to the landlord. (much better than in Washington, where you pretty much can't get out of a lease before it's over) But I would have to start my new job on or around April 1, which means that I have to know by the end of next week. So my big dilemma is whether or not to cancel my lease this weekend so I will move out by March 20th, or to wait until I hear something. I suppose It might be nice to have a day or three of overlap between the two apartments so I can move my stuff more easily. I wonder if I could rent a truck. (I've still never driven here...)

Wednesday, February 16, 2005


I'm expecting news about my job within two days. I'm not going to say anything before that time, other than that I have been shopping for apartments in Tokyo. Here's a random photo for your enjoyment.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

6 Dollar Apple

6 Dollar Apple
Originally uploaded by noexit.
Ever wondered what I $6 apple tasted like?

No? Me neither.