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Top Stories


 
Non-traditional, alternative English teacher working twice as hard as regular, normal teachers


 
Unearthed Jesuit journals show day-to-day life of early Christian missionaries


 
Gaba teachers offended by magazine's criticism


 
Former English teachers struggle to readjust back into society


 
Former-AEON teacher helps others get treatment for energy drink addiction


 
Ibaraki police: "Nerd cell planned to preserve popular idols in formaldehyde"


 
Gaba Corp. expresses regrets over listing "basic typing skills" as "professional" teacher requirement


 
Eight-year old reflects on how his life could have turned out if only he had studied harder


 
Tom Cruise snaps, blasts Eikaiwa schools in Japan as "psuedo" education


 
Gaba teacher successfully reaches 1,000 lesson milestone


 
Report: Nova abstinence policy towards social interaction an "abysmal failure"


 
Organized crime grows weary of being linked to Eikaiwa business


 
English teacher makes firm stand on favorite actor issue


 
English teacher feels student presentation on negative impacts of excess dimethyltryptamine in endocrine glands, "great"


 
Gaba teacher refuses to come out of his "customized and relaxed" closet


 
Relationship with previously divorced 36-year-old student ends amicably


 
Japanese Eikaiwa student not impressed with English teacher's ability to hold chopsticks


 
Report: English instructor given cold shoulder at Go-kon partydress code


 
Source: Instructor flagrantly 'violated spirit' of Cool-Biz dress code


 
Nova Corp. faces new charges of decieving students who hoped to book a cute girl like the one from the train ad


 
Gaba Kidzania booth opens to mixed reviews


 
Gaba marketing strategy to focus on neglected, clinically depressed demographic


 
Editorial: New Gaba partner's choice to refer to his customized and relaxed cutting-edge web-enabled, innovative, stylish learning studio as a mere "desk" and "computer," demeans everyone in the Eikaiwa industry


 
Local businessman in need of help


 
Marchers protest Gaba teachers in Japan


 
English conversation teacher forum to be held near Yurakucho station


 
Gaba English teacher showers girls at kyabakura club with mix-tapes, novelty coupon booklets


 
English conversation teacher now says Iraq War was a mistake


 
Possible concentration camp discovered in central Tokyo by U.S. surveillance satellite


 
Global warming: What will it mean for the Eikaiwa industry?


 
English school hiring trends: Native Americans continue to massacre job market in Japan


 
New book claims Japan may be ready for its first "Blood type-B" Prime Minister


 
Editorial: Now we are all NOVA teachers


 
Family confirms that English teaching son has let them down again this Christmas season


 
English teacher faces tough questions following 'sick-day'


 
Deflationary economy continues to dampen Gaba salary's "competitive" spirit


 
"Alchohol," "lack of communication" played factor in Bohemian Rhapsody mistakes


 
T-shirt designer credits his "accurate heartfulness" "potent and useful spirit" as keys to success in fashion


 
New Gas Panic DJ playing 'Dancing Queen' all wrong


 
English teacher struggles to transcend invisible boundaries of Eikaiwa life


 
Girl's heart "broken" as Nova declares bankruptcy days before Halloween party


 
Pint-sized Eikaiwa student found guilty in malicious death of teacher


 
Iowa grandmother doesn't see why grandson shouldn't be 'ikemen' too


 
English instructor announces plan to wear same black suit for duration of 2008


 
Peppy Geos Eikaiwa teacher club cracks the mystery of the Fujimoto Bakery phantom


 
Ghana man in Roppongi just relieved that Canadian man is doing ok


 
American International School Undokai marred by parents brawl, again


 
Long-term English teaching may also have long-lasting consequences according to study released


 
Experts fear English conversation could be ruining Starbucks experience


 
Bullying worsens for Half-Eikaiwa teacher/Half-Student children


 
English teacher confesses to killing Jon Benet Ramsey


 
English instructor calls on convenience store workers to be more amiable


 
Japanese youth proclaiming to be "As happy as a clam" in serious condition after being pummeled by Manchester youths


 
37-year old man denies having "Snow Globes"


 
GEOS clones more attractive looking English conversation teacher


 
Teacher asking anyone who may remember his business idea to come forward


 
Economists: Gaba teachers to get 3% boost in July, August salary


 
Hope continues to fade for Korean hostage


 
Student ready to make good on offer to learn how to make tacos


 
Six-year old boy slams "Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes"


 
Student wishes she had a more interesting fact in other than "has seen Bon Jovi 5 times"


 
Part 1/3: 39-year-old teacher undecided over whether attending the GABA Halloween party is cool or not


 
Part 2/3: 39-year-old English teacher to withhold January availability schedule from Gaba IQM "indefinitely"


 
Part 3/3: 39-year-old former Nova, former GABA teacher just hopes Berlitz interviewer doesn't ask the "How do you see yourself in 5 years?" question


 
Part 1/3: English rapidly becoming Heaven's top language


 
Part 2/3: Jesus Christ needs more English review according to Nova teacher


 
Part 3/3: Jesus Christ asks for official teacher change starting Tuesday


 
The combination of alcohol and my copy of Word Power: Vocabulary Builder only fuels my fury over the inglorious 2/2/2 rating I was subjected to


 
The combination of alcohol and my copy of Word Power: Vocabulary Builder only fuels my fury over my horrendous booth assignment


 
Gaba teacher steers student to cinematic success


 
U.S. State department warns travelers going to Japan not to touch underneath those plastic seats up on the train station platform


 
"Hero" English teacher stops business man from masturbating on train


 
Peppy, fresh-face, unorthodox, idealistic ECC teacher battles stupid, immature "boys"


 
Dandy House este chain hopes to get the word out that you are all "very, very gross" right now


 
Comb-over causes delay for teacher


 
Teacher blows student away with historical knowledge, keen insight


 
Elite advertising exec loses advertising debate to Eikaiwa teacher


 
Gay English teacher scoring every night, co-workers speculate


 
Increasing number of men reduced to practicing golf swing in public


 
No end in sight to damage caused by drunken nude romp through Tokyo park






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Corrections

Last Sunday, we quoted the manager of Shin-Osaka GEOS as saying that Sam Kowalski's waste basket was "half-empty." In fact, the manager of Shin-Osaka GEOS had actually referred to Sam Kowalski's waste basket as being "half-full." We apologize for the misunderstanding.

Despite our reports, Gaba's Shinagawa learning studio was not in fact overthrown by Filipino rebels.

In our article, "Teacher erection spurs post-classroom discussion," we erroneously referred to Gerald Greenberg as being a follower of orthodox judaism. In fact, Gerald Greenberg is a Hasidic jew. We sincerely apologize for the error.

In last weeks article, "Pentacostalist Eikaiwa teachers: Too much trouble?" we mispelled Michelle Hughes last name. Please return to the article for the corrected sentence.





On this day...
A 13-lesson "manvalanche" leaves 25-year old Gaba teacher Scott Hudson completely stunned in Gaba's Yokohama learning studio facilty.

 

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Police shut down illegal English Boys Club

Unlicensed clubs violating entertainment business laws to be closed

TOKYO, Japan (GTA) -- Tokyo Metropolitan Police raided a English boys club (Boys Will Be Boys) in the first district of Kabukicho for operating without a license. Police announced the arrest of the club's owner, Terry Thornton (30), who is charged with violation of the Entertainment Business Control Law.

English Boys
Police hope to shut down host clubs operating without a license as English Boy clubs, such as Shinjuku's Boys will Be Boys.
According to Shinjuku Police, Thornton opened the club in February, hiring native English speakers as "talking companions" for female guests.

English boy bars claim to be a version of "Girls Bars" where female staff serves drinks from across the counter. In contrast, Host Clubs are considered to be "social establishments" and require a license to entertain female guests.

However, police charge English Boy Bars simply trying to skirt Entertainment business laws while encouraging "Native English Companions" to engage female guests in discussions of a variety of topics, such as their favorite movie and plans for the upcoming cherry blossom season.

Clubs such as Shibuya's Native Boys, allow patrons to purchase a 30,000 'Pillow Talk' lesson where clients can share a pillow to discuss there 'hopes and dreams' with the Native English speaker they choose to nominate.

One club regular, office worker Nozomi Fukui (35), claims she enjoys going to English boy bars at least once a week. "It is very fun after the day's work is over."

Nozomi says she does not mind paying the 449,820 yen for a 9-month membership plus additional fees, such a 31,000 initial charge.

The Shinjuku Kabukicho district, which once had 200 host clubs at its peak in 2004, now has approximately 130 clubs remaining as a result of an ongoing police crackdown. English Boy Bars will not be exempt, according to Tokyo Metropolis Police.

Instructor opens up about identity disorder in current issue of ESL Reports

Multiple alter egos disrupts lessons, impedes student progress

TOKYO, Japan (GTA) -- Ikebukuro LS instructor Timothy Voss is gives his first interview since receiving a one-year suspension from ESL activities after a concatenation of bizarre incidents raised serious questions toward his mental state and ability to function in a Learning Studio environment.

In the interview with ESL Reports, Voss claims to have been diagnosed with Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID) in counseling sessions he began attending last November in order to treat his increasingly erratic behavior.

"There were about 18-different alters (alter egos) that would show up unbidden during lessons," Voss claims in the article out this coming March.

While several characters, including a heavily accented Italian waiter, a trusty father-figure, and a more persistent version of LAPD Inspector Columbo, have become a positive part in English role-play, others ultimately led to deleterious consequences for Voss' lessons.

As the expression goes, it takes only one bad apple to ruin the bunch.

"Dale is a bit wild," Voss explained. "And he did cross the line. Once, I was going over idioms like 'busy as a beaver' and 'happy as a clam.' Then, Dale would appear and rearrange the two phrases. It was filthy."

Voss also wants "Dale" to accept culpability for the latest prurient comments he issued during a routine Business Advantage lesson.

"Dale thinks it's funny to do his 'James Brown School of Business' gimmick while making proposals for wearing zebra skinned bikinis and body oil massages."

Nobody is laughing when the presence of recalcitrant alter egos becomes inimical to English development.

The identity disorder is more prevalent in the ESL community than some might think, due to the daily trauma and extreme emotional stress that some medical exerts believe triggers the disorder.

According to Wayne Brinker, the common symptoms of DID to look for include multiple mannerisms, attitudes and beliefs that are dissimilar to each other, headaches, distortion or loss of subjective time, depersonalization, amnesia, and depression.

Former Eikaiwa TV star arrested for assault

TV talent faces suspension, possible jail time for latest brush with law

TOKYO, Japan (GTA) -- Former English Conversation TV star, Eric English, was arrested this weekend on suspicion of assault.

Eric English
Latest brush with law threatens career of troubled former TV star, Eric English.

English (real name Anthony Ryan Thomas), 35, faces possible charges of felony second-degree assault and destruction of government property.

According to police, the former talent on the popular Let's Let's English TBS television series became enraged after a city statistics tracker counted him as he walked past an intersection with friends in Omote-Sando Friday night.

One witness stated that Thomas suddenly charged at the man, shouting, "You don't count me! I count you, ok? Ready, set, here we go! One. How do you like that, pal?" before ripping away the counting device and smashing it in the road.

An off-duty taxi driver who witnessed the scene claimed that, "a foreigner man was very angry, and so I was very surprised. He was falling on the ground and then began shouting, 'You're a nobody. A zero. What you do? You count people. I inspire people."

Thomas currently remains at Akasaka Police Station where he is expected sign an admittance of guilt Monday.

Thomas came to fame for his over-the-top teaching antics on the "Let's Let's English" series which crossed over into book and software products. However, he was suspended from TBS in 2007 after reportedly stealing a bell device from the popular chain restaurant Saizeria.

"As much as my existence may seem grotesque to some, deep down, people need me. I have more responsibility than you can fathom," Thomas explained as he was being led to jail.

"I'm out there, standing between them and the cold specter of reality facing them head on. I'm the public's once-a-week oasis. The single silver lining in their on-coming tsunami. The ginger in their curry. The oshibori before the meal. The snow day that cancels school. The extra 1000 yen they find in their old jacket. Last years GAP hat that's hardly been worn. A half-price rental at Tsutaya. The 100-yen vending machine. The GAP salesclerk who refolds the clothes they've messed up. The Wieder Vitamin jelly after a hangover. That's me"

Thomas says he expects to secure temporary work at Berlitz while under suspension.

Gaba to expand prenatal English curriculum to 10 Learning Studios by 2010


TOKYO, Japan (GTA) -- Gaba Corp. announced that it would be expanding last year's successful launch of 'Early Early English' program for prenatal clients from the initial 3 studios to 10 by the end of the year.

GABA Fetal English
Untapped fetal market expected to boost GABA profits for coming year.
The popular course, which offers English Conversation to a demographic previously regarded as untapped, incorporates Gaba's innovative use of technology in a way that is unmatched in the industry.

"At Gaba, it has always been our belief that English Conversation begins at the point of conception," explained educational director David Greenwood. "It is our mission to empower each fetus with the opportunity to meet his or her most audacious English goals from day numero uno and ultimately achieve person growth in one of our stylishly modern learning fields."

According to Greenwood, each lesson is specifically tailored to the core needs of each fetus.

"Instructors are able to rely on the Fetal Friends textbook series, which is specifically designed by the Gaba Academic Development Section (GADS) to respond to the needs of our unborn clients in a one-on-one environment," he stated.

Gaba instructor Steven Prieb explained that teaching to a fetus brings new challenges, but that Gaba's unique two-day training seminar gives each instructor the skills to face any adversity head on.

"There's this general misconception in the English forums that teaching to a fetus, means putting your head between the legs and speaking directly into the magic hole; which only a few mothers actually request," he said.

"You have to be passionate about it, though," Prieb explained. "For, me, I love the fact that I have a chance to interact with so many (fetal clients). Most of time, it doesn't even feel like a job. I might simply ask if they prefer to use the textbook, or perhaps have a friendly chat for 40 minutes. 'So, you're a fetus? That's great. You're skin is transparent? That's amazing!'"

According to Gaba counselors we interviewed, expecting mothers are often concerned over a variety of issues. While many are concerned about their fetus falling behind in their peer group, others agonize how to raise their child with correct pronunciation.

Mothers struggling with the decision over which trimester to start English conversation shouldn't worry, according to counselor Kotomi Nakano.

"There really is not a correct time when to start a lesson plan as no two fetuses are the same. Our counselors, are always ready to help clients design a lesson plan to suit their individual needs."

Heads of four major Eikaiwa schools brutally slayed

"Coming-of-Age Celebration" ends with in gruesome, blood-spattered, carnage for GABA, ECC, AEON, GEOS

TOKYO, Japan (GTA) -- CEOs running four major English school companies were simultaneously assassinated January 12th, in what appears to have been a coordinated attack.

English school attacks
Police exit mansion mansion in Azabu after finding body strangled by headset.

According to Tokyo Metropolitan police, chief executive heads of GABA, ECC, AEON, and GEOS were murdered in plain view during the Monday holiday.

Witnesses described the blood splattered cubicles as extremely "ki no doku," as the crimes occurred just 2 weeks after large scale O-sooji office cleanings.

Tokyo Metropoliton Police are currently asking for the public's help. Anyone who may have seen a man a Yakult delivery girl on a motorbike, a Buddhist priest, a daikon wielding housewife, or a group of elderly men carrying a mikoshi shrine acting suspiciously is asked to come forward and contact their local police department.

Former NOVA CEO Nozomu Saruhashi was unharmed as he attended his son's Coming-Of-Age ceremony near his present residence in Argentina. Suruhashi, who escaped from a Japanese prison and fled the country in 2007, expressed shock at the news of all four of his former rivals' demise.

"As a completely legitimate businessman who makes his meager salary from the sale of headsets, I am enormously stunned and floored by the news that all of my past adversaries were horrifically and gruesomely bumped out of the way."

In other news, NOVA Corp, currently run by Nozomu's older brother Fudo Saruhashi, announced they would be reopening 80 new schools in the Kanto area as part of NOVA's effort to reestablish its footing in the Eikaiwa industry. "Today, NOVA Corp. has settled all company business," he stated. "Nothing personal. Strictly business."

NOVA is now expected to begin rehiring teachers under restructured contracts this February. Under the rehiring agreements, former teachers can earn up to 60% of their previous salary, provided they sign a waiver form, relinquishing claims to unpaid salary.

English Instructor promises to stand, sway with enthusiasm to top-40 rock in Motown House


TOKYO, Japan (GTA) -- Tim Hayman, 43-year old English instructor, dramatically announced plans to reappear at Roppongi's popular Motown House 2 nightclub this Friday.

Hayman, whose personal motto is 'live life to the fullest,' is expected to stand near a table and move with light to moderate levels of enthusiasm depending on the level of rockability in the music.

Motown
Motown House 2, site of personal humiliation, possible redemption for Tim Hayman.


"After teaching 45-lessons this week, I'm ready to live it up, drink a few Heinekens, and just 'let the chips fall where they may,'" explained the Gaba instructor known around the Ginza LS 'The Shark,' due to similarities such as the shark's biological need to constantly swim through the ocean (move from school-to-school) and prey on a steady diet of fish (teach conversational English to clients) or die (die).

Filipino bar-hostess and former male Tuazon Pineda, who remembers Hayman from 4-months ago, is excited to see Tim return after his self-imposed leave of absence. Pineda released a statement expressing 'admiration for Tim Hayman's courage,' after 'an embarrassing misunderstanding' this summer.

In preparation for his return to clubbing, Hayman plans to drink 2 large cans of beer from a local convenience store and eat a light snack. Some suggest the snack may be epizza toast,f however we have not been able to independently confirm those reports.

Hayman says he plans to position himself in the room to first establish his 'presence' at approximately 10:30 P.M. During the 90-minute ggrace period,h Hayman expects to take time to reflect on life and wait for women to approach him, in addition to viewing album artwork and graffiti adorning the walls.

Following the grace period, Hayman will shift to the 'eye-contact stage.' This 30-minute period also marks the point where alcohol content is increased, leading up to the shift towards the nonchalant-contact inducing 'dancing phase,' where ultimately no holds are barred.

Haruko Ikezawa, 32-year old temp staff worker at Mitsubishi-UFJ bank says she has high-hopes that Hayman can work up enough courage to position himself in between her and her co-worker Masumi Karino.

ESL Reports writer Katy Hutchinson, believes Hayman could experience a series of conflicting emotions, where the etorment of his solitude' is at odds with his 'feelings of repugnance,' not only for himself but anyone desperate enough to interact with him.

Still, Hayman is confident that the conflict can ultimately be placated by consuming sufficient amounts of alcohol.

For Eikaiwa Ghost Hunter Society, excursion to Leper Island may lead to lost treasure of Kinokuniya Bunzaemon


TOKYO, Japan (GTA) -- The GEOS Ghost Hunter Society released a statement announcing an immediate April expedition to the mysterious Leper Island located off the northern coast of Okinawa.

"The GEOS Ghost Hunter Society has in our possession a map leading to Airakuen Island--or if you believe in ghost stories, Leper Island," society president Chip Mitchell announced. "But this is no ordinary map. It's a map leading directly to the treasure of Kinokuniya Bunzaemon himself."

GEOS GHOST HUNTER
Ghost Hunter Society hopes to find golden treasure despite lepracy fears.

According to legend, the Japanese High Command used Airakuen, located 120 kilometers from the northwest coast of Okinawa, to quarantine citizens who suffered from Hansen's disease during the Pacific War. As the Allied bombardment destroyed facilities, patients were forced to seek shelter in underground caves. An American land invasion was quickly called off when commanders realized the island's purpose.

"There the leper's have been waiting," a local fisherman from northern Okinawa explained. "Waiting for word of the end of the war. Generation by generation, underground, in the dark."

"We now know that the Japanese military officer in charge of the quarantine operation, Colonel Yasukiho Tanaka, was a direct descendent and heir to the Kinokuniya fortune," Mitchell stated. "We the GEOS Ghost Hunter Society now believe Tanaka, in the final months of the war, buried much of his family's wealth and heirlooms underground, where it would be safe from foreign hands."

Leper Island
Leper Island prefers to maintain underground society despite calls for modernization.
No man has set foot on Leper Island for over 60 years. Some say that if these Eikaiwa teachers know what's good for them, they'll return back to their 25-class work schedules where they belong.

Yet, trip logistics coordinator Ishwar "I.T." Tarkalankarli,says that this mystery will be a first for the GHS.

"Let's face it. This time, we're not going up against ghosts. These are real lepers and there not about to let us just walk in and take the treasure," he explained. "That's why we're bringing gasoline. To burn the lepers. Our own Junki "the sex-master" Ishikawa says that's the best way."

According to Samantha "candyman" Davis, Eikaiwa salary will not be sufficient to continue the Ghost Hunter Society and pay off debt.

Mitchell still has to pay back his dad for taking care of his two month oxy-contin rehab fees in 2005. This comes in addition to the $5000 dollars owed to seedy loan companies after a purchase of a large-screen plasma TV in 2003. "There's a fine line between when it comes to morality and sometimes you have to cross that line. Even Ghost Hunters," Chip Mitchell wrote in a March Facebook posting.

Hands on CEO experience looking good on Chutatsu Aono's CV


TOKYO, Japan (GTA) -- After revising and printing out updated versions of his CV, Gaba CEO Chutatsu Aono announced that there was "nothing to worry about."

Despite the recent economic troubles, Aono proceeded to note that his future was "very bright" and that he would likely "need to wear shades," according to employees at a Shinjuku Kinko's.

"Harvard Business School? Check. Four years at MicroSoft. My MBA. Sweet. Tell me honestly if you thing this sounds too corny, 'Consistently took the initiative to extract the best possible performance out of each and every GABA associate?' Seriously, does anyone think I'm going overboard here?"

Aono reportedly spent two hours deliberating with employees over the final revisions, in order to "polish that bad motha."

"Should I spell out Chief Executive Officer, or should I just abbreviate it? It's really difficult to get all this stuff onto one page. This could get out of hand if we're not careful. Let's take out captain of the Waseda Math-a-Maniacs and just leave in tennis club. Wait, I totally forgot about American Express."

While speaking to part-time clerk Yotaro, Mr. Aono remarked that he may need more time to find himself and may take a year off to travel across Europe.

English instructor claims to have pre-met girlfriend in New Zealand

Instructor established relationship with Japanese female before coming to Japan

TOKYO, Japan (GTA) -- Greg Whitt, currently teaching at GABA's Nagoya learning studio, was defiant as he rejected claims that he had met and started a relationship with 25-year old Madoka Ikezawa after coming to Japan in 2005.

The kiwi instructor was adamant that he courted Ikezawa while she studied abroad at Canterbury Christ Church University in New Zealand, before he made a decision to live and work in Japan as an English instructor. "Frankly, I am very tired of people asking me if I came to Japan to find a girlfriend, when it's quite obvious I already had a girlfriend."

"It's really embarrassing when people have their misconceptions, because some guys that go to Japan are desperate."

Co-worker and friend Barry Scheitzer explained, "A lot of people might think Greg Whitt came to Japan to get a girlfriend. Well, what they don't know is that he's actually a guy capable of getting a girlfriend in any country, no matter the longitude and latitude."

Greg and Madoka, initially met when Greg began attending Japan Club meetings at Canterbury Christ Church University.

"I know, I know. People probably look at me and they think, 'There goes another guy whose closest thing to a relationship was a series of 'fan mail' sent to Kristi Yamaguchi,'" Greg explained.

"Sorry, to disappoint everyone, but just because a guy happens to be taking Japanese 1A, 1B, 2A, and 2B and later meets a girl in the Japan Club, and then, just maybe, let's say that guy would rather not have to see Autumn in New York by himself; it does not necessarily mean he's some sort of loser."

Whitt has his supporters, including instructor Scott Trahan, who says Greg has nothing to be ashamed of.

"As someone who met their girlfriend by publishing an ad titled 'American 24 in Japan - Seeking Fun Girl to Show Me Around the City' in the Metropolis Classifieds, I could only wish I was Greg."

54-year old Gaba quality-focused professional woman worried maximum energetic genki level being taken for granted

Instructor efforts may not be enough as 'good days' change to 'difficult spells'

TOKYO, Japan (GTA) -- Long-time quality-focused professional Betty Watkins (54) struggled for answers following a grueling Planet Travel lesson outlining key phrases to use during a homestay.

"I try to be the way I used to be. Carefree. Throw out a few jokes. Festive. To tell you the truth, Karen in learning booth 12 is much friendlier and Tony who does first meetings has much more charisma than me. Quite frankly, Yumiko may have booked my lesson, but I'm not convinced that it wasn't a mistake or some sort of computer virus in the scheduling system."

Watkins explains that, while she does have her 'good days', she has not felt like her 'old self', in some time.

"Oh, I can't do this sometimes. I feel like I'm a ghost in my own nightmare."

"No question, poor Yumiko would have been better off with Darren last Tuesday. I'm pretty sure she doesn't need me. Especially if I'm having one of my spells."

According to a Gaba instructor profile, Watkins has interests in collecting multiple goods, including toy figurines, commemorative spoons for the 50 United States, and antique thimbles. "I have 32 spoons. Most are from the eastern states though. Those are easy to collect."

Meanwhile, Watkins keeps a positive outlook on the English teaching business.

"Most of all, I enjoy having the company. The clients, you know. That is, if they don't mind keeping me company. I just hope it's not a disappointment. I worry sometimes. Am I making a mistake? I know I want to be positive, but I can't help wondering if people are displeased with me."

According to long time student and nursing professional Inoue Yumiko, 'Betty-Sensei' tries although she has her moments when she is hot and other moments when she is 'cold'. Then, there are times when she is 'freezing', and requests that she 'not be looked at'.

Watkins explains that, "I realize now that my best years are gone. Perhaps, I may be remembered as a falling leaf or a small speck of dust that happened to settle here and there in the lives of others. My only wish, is that my Italian accent when I explain how to make pizza in lesson 9 in GTS 4 is appreciated."

Gaba quality-focused professional blindsided by client's lesson concern


TOKYO, Japan (GTA) -- Several quality-focused professionals were stunned at the news that a fellow professional had been named in a client lesson concern suit filed last Tuesday. The concern, handled by local customized lesson studio quality manager, involved two counts in which quality was not focused.

The target of the concern, 27-year old Karen Alma of Saskatchewan, Canada, was charged with English conversational negligence after failing to locate the textbook. A second charge, was filed for not being as "enthusiastic as Robert" was also made.

According to a spokesperson from the Lesson Concern Centre, an internal investigation would be made in cooperation with parties involved in the concern."

Several quality-focused professionals defended their collegue pointing out she had been contributing her efforts in her stylishly customized learning facility since 7 a.m. in hopes of growth oppurtunities.

"There's no need for a client concern. Karen is like any other quality-minded-focused-profession who merely hopes to contribute her efforts towards client goal attainment and nuture their ability to compete on a global scale," explained Habib Muhammod.

Robert Bond also defended Alma. "The girl flew 8 hours on a plane from Sydney to teach English. And what does she ask in return? Nothing, expect maybe a thank you. Maybe she doesn't put on a big show or get into character, but she's still got feelings."

Karen declined to respond to requests for interviews, explaining that she was "torn-up inside."

Legendary teacher to come out of retirement

Jason Golden expected to sign contract with ECC this month

TOKYO, Japan (GTA) -- Legendary English teacher Jason Golden has announced he intends to return to the English teaching profession after a 6 year absence.

"Jason Golden is ranked up there with the greats. Mark Griffen. Tony Gray. Jim 'Ever' Reddy," argues ESL Reports columnist Sheryl Williams. "Jason Golden was the first teacher to use the triangulated-objective approach. He introduced the concept that a second-language cannot be learned until one first masters their subconscious languuage. He changed everything. The rumor was that he buried his box of props and realia on the peak of Mt. Tsukuba until the day he would return."

However, Golden's reputation for fast living earned his status as on of ESL's premier bad boys in the late 90's.

One anonymous friend described Golden as "very, very, very bad."

"When I left GEOS in 2001, I thought I was burnt out. I truly never expected to be back in the ESL business," Golden explained. "The terrorist attacks had just happened and I guess it really affected me personally. Because of 9/11, I felt I just could not put everything into the lessons that I wanted. I needed time to think about life and where I was headed."

"I guess I just wanted to disappear after returning to the states. Just be an anonymous nobody. Some say working 3rd shift stocking shelves is a step down, but I liked it. I felt peaceful again."

Still, former GEOS trainer Billy Leahy was was unconvinced that Golden would ignore his true calling.

"I know the reasons he was in Miamiville, Ohio for the last 6 years. You give all you can until there's nothing left but the blood, sweat, and the gunk that collects on the ledge under your whiteboard. But it's time for Golden to come 'full-circle.' He can try all he wants to deny it, but he cannot get away from what he truly is."

Golden stated that he's always believed that people need to use their god-given abilities. "A giraffe uses its long neck to reach leaves up high. An anteater has a long nose for eating ants. I was blessed with an ability to provide engaging English conversation with an appearance that is pleasant on the eyes."

Eikaiwa drama coming to Fuji TV this summer

John Dauber, Ryoko Iwai to star in 10-part series

TOKYO, Japan (GTA) -- Fuji television announced it would air a 10-part dramatic series set in a English learning studio this summer.
The Eikaiwa will focus on the daily lives of 6 English teachers as viewers get a glimse of real life in an English conversation school, according to producer Hideo Kuwabara.

"It's going to be very gritty, very raw. Everything on the show is based on true events. We wanted the character's to be realistic, so you get a really gritty, raw, experience. Nothing is held back."

Episode one, 'Who ate my lunch?' is scheduled to air Monday, August 18th at 9:00 on Fuji TV.

Actor John Dauber talked about playing instructor Brett Schultz.

"My character starts off as this hot-shot Eikaiwa teacher guy who thinks he knows all the answers. Until an elderly student turns the tables and helps him find his true self."

Ryoko Iwai stars as top Eikaiwa student Yoko Yamaguchi.

"What attracted me to this character was not only that she was this expert Eikaiwa student who has a 915 toeic score, but she is also still searching for true love. Things gets off to a rocky start with Dave-sensei when she finds out he has lowered her chair to better view her cleavage. You'll have to watch the rest to find out if there's a spark between them."

The show hopes to tackle serious issues, such as racism and bigotry. In a later episode, Brett and Darius are at each others throats, until a dramatic hiking trip up Mt. Fuji ends up changing both of their lives forever.

Shameless Chinese 'Giiba Man-to Man Eikaiwa' poor imitation of real thing

Gaba concept blatantly pirated, marketed for quick Yuan

SHANGHAI, China (GTA) -- Chinese students are currently flocking to Giiba's "Global Conversation Centers" to take man-to-man lessons with Giiba instructors.

GIIBA English School
Train advertisement for Giiba on Shanghai subway attracting new clients and controversy.
Giiba, which boasts over 30 GCCs in major Chinese cities, has become a target of criticism from those who claim that the school has blatantly stolen what have always been known as the hallmarks of Gaba's success.

The Chinese English school, which offers clients "a globally respected, stimulating, and stylish environment" where they can "nurture" their "global interpersonal skills" has been radically changing the way English conversation is taught in China, according to company profile posted online. "At Giiba, we believe that English = Education = Emotion = Exileration = Ebulience = Eclectism = Effervescence = Elation = Eco-Friendly = Elixir of Life," explained Giiba CEO, Wang Yu-Cheng. "It is our underlying philosphy to help our clients achieve their most ostentatious goals for life."

Gaba teachers we spoke to were sceptical. "Giiba sounds totally lame. Who would want to teach in something called a 'Learning Pen?' I don't care how spacious and stylish they claim it is," lamented instructor Brook Hunter.

Giiba and its heavily hyped "Progessive Effort Reward System" promises teachers the chance to earn up to 200,000 Yuan a month, for instructors who "show dedication" and stay "flexible."

"I sincerely doubt you could earn 200,000 a month at Giiba," explained Gaba instructor Stacey Voss. "Any poor schmo who works at Giiba must have to stay really, really flexible. It's theoretically possible, I guess, if they work all the weekends and all Chinese holidays."

Hundreds of Gaba Level Up Test results may have been tainted between 2003 - 2004


TOKYO, Japan (GTA) -- A former Gaba Instructor has come forward and admitted to manipulating scores of level up tests during a 2-year period from 2003-2004.

Former teacher Alexandra Fedders, currently residing in Vancouver, Canada, admitted to ignoring mistakes, feeding students answers, and generously inputting higher scores "just to get it over with."

A tearful Fedders apologized saying that, "I only wanted to make people happy. If I am guilty of anything, it is that I wanted people to like me. Please, I'm not a bad person."

Statistics show that tests conducted by Fedders were consistently in the 96-98 point range, a full 2.5 percentage points higher than the average student test results.

Gaba Corp. did not respond to our phone calls, yet released a statement to the media announcing that, "Gaba Corp. understands that the seriousness of these claims and will be conducting a full investigation to determine if there is in fact any merit to Miss Fedders claims. At this time, we have no further comment."

Insiders say that,in the worst-case scenario, over 230 level-up tests conducted by Fedders could be thrown out if it turns out the results were inauthentic. Student certification would thus be rendered invalid until retesting could occur.

English teachers sent conflicting messages about sex

Experts fear hormones, pressure could ruin perfectly honest lessons, language exchanges

TOKYO, Japan (GTA) - Abigail Chapman has trained teachers in the arts of Eikaiwa for 2 years now. With each new group of teachers, she sits them down to discuss the dangers of romantic teacher student relationships.

Nevertheless, Abigail has been frustrated at what she described as the "glorification" of teacher/student relationships.

"By the time they reach their 4th month in Japan, the average teacher will have seen at least 4000 sexually suggestive scenes featuring students and teachers. They can see it anywhere; the Internet, on TV, on trains," she explained.

Samantha Praff, a professor of East Asian studies at Dartmouth, further explained how teachers are being sent mixed messages.

"Whether it's a written rule or something implicit, most schools frown upon dating. Yet, teachers are also bombarded by images of women handcuffed or gazing at some 23-year old white guy. It can be very confusing."

Gaba teacher Ted Schafer says peer pressure forced him to become romantically involved with multiple students. "My instincts said no. But everything around me said YES! I wanted to be the cool guy, adjusting his tie. Now, I've got to arrange my GABA schedule to avoid 4 different people. Monday nights are a definite NO. Thursday is bigger NO."

Japanese Eikaiwa student not impressed with English teacher's ability to hold chopsticks


TOKYO, Japan (GTA) -- After attending farewell party for Gaba teacher Michelle Greenberg, forty-two-year-old housewife Mariko Wakai inexplicably remains emotionally unmoved by Andrew Jacobson's use of chopsticks.

Despite the fact that Andrew's ability to use chopsticks has been described as "amazing" and "inspirational" by Japanese businessmen, college students, OL, retirees, indie rock bands, hotel management staff, taxi cab drivers and numerous others in the past, Wakai stubbornly claims that Andrew is in fact "highly overrated" in terms of his ability to manipulate the traditional wooden Asian utensils.

"Andrew-teacher seemed to have an adequate control over his chopsticks. On the other hand, he's been in Japan for six-months already. What exactly should I do? Shower him with so many compliments? Heap praise on him simply because he can hold to chopsticks together and manage to push big piece of fish into his mouth?" Mariko asked. "While he could handle easy food, I noticed some difficulty when he tried to eat tofu from the nabe pot. And I am sad to say that he also dropped some butter corn on the floor. Am I the only one who pays attention to these things?"

Mariko's comments were rejected as being "out of touch" by other students supportive of Andrew.

"Andrew-sensei really did an awesome job using chopsticks. I know part of me wanted to grab the chopsticks and take them away before he accidentally stabs himself or a student in the eye. But, I was very impressed because he did great," explained Mr. Junki Ishihara, a student of Andrew's since December.

"Whether you want to call it 'erai' 'jyozu' 'subarashii' or 'kakkoii,' it was very exciting for us Japanese that night. Plus, did you know that Andrew cooks spaghetti after work sometimes? I don't understand what Mariko's problem is. Andrew-sensei!"

GABA English teacher returns back from reconstructed facial surgery- 'stronger than ever'

Inspirational story inspires other teachers involved in severely disfiguring accidents

TOKYO, Japan (GTA) -- While in Laos two summers ago, the last thing Gaba teacher Mark Steadman remembered was skidding his motorcycle into an oncoming mini-bus without wearing a helmet. After waking up three days later, Mark discovered he had broken nearly every bone in his body.

"The doctors in Laos did the best they could, but the damage was fairly extensive. The nurse came in and told me that I would probably never teach English in Japan or anywhere else again due to my severe injuries."
Gaba Japan. English School.
The news hit Mark hard. Up until the time of the accident, he was regarded as one of Gaba's top "5-Star" teachers. Not giving up hope, Mark flew to Beverly Hills, California where he met up with several of the world's top plastic surgeons.

"Mark's case was one of the worst I'd ever seen. His jaw was literally pushed to the side where his cheek would normally be," explained surgeon Pujab Vheredjay M.D. "His face looked like a mangled rubix cube when I first saw him."

However, after 27 surgeries, a team of seven doctors were able to nearly realign Mark's face back to its original form.

"I made Mark no guarantees that he would ever be able to teach again. I was worried that teaching more than ten or eleven lessons a day could cause a set-back in the recovery process," Dr. Vheredjay explained. "If the wrong piece from the jenga tower is moved, all the pieces could crumble down. Game over. You sunk my battleship."

But Mark was adamant that he get back to teaching as soon as possible. After just 12 months of intense facial rehabilitation, Mark was back teaching at Gaba. Mark's IQM was more than happy to have him back in action.

"Yeah, Mark. Mustache. Works on Saturdays. Good bloke," his manager explained while identifying him from his profile hanging on the wall of the Shibuya Gaba LS.

As a result of the reconstructive surgery, Mark's face is no longer capable of movement. While some may view this as a hurdle, Mark kept a positive outlook.

"In some ways, it is quite ironic. I was known as a teacher who got by mostly on looks and charisma. Now, since the surgery, I've learned how to reach students on a totally different level," he explained.

"I guess I'm sort of like a Stevie Wonder or Ray Charles. You know how after losing one sense, your other senses become more advanced? Well, I've lost my ability use facial gestures, so it's forced me to adapt new to a whole new mindset when I'm in the booth teaching students."

ECC friendship damaged over teacher dispute


TOKYO, Japan (GTA) -- Sources at ECC English school report the friendship between Jason Hoover and Bob Moody has quickly deteriorated over Bob's recent shift from spikey hair to the faux-mo style.

"I've been at ECC for 2 1/2 years, and ever since I've been here, the faux-mo has always been MY thing," Jason announced in a written statement. "I'm the (expletive) guy on the seventh floor with the faux-mo. Now, Bob and I have been friends for a while. I always liked the guy, until Monday when he walks in with his own faux-mo. Or, more like a faux-faux-faux-mo to tell you the truth."

"I never said that we could be Mo-buddies together," Jason further claimed, referring to the term commonly used in English conversation schools to describe male friends who share faux-mohawks. "All he would have had to do is come up to me and simply ask me first. Then, I might not have had a problem."

Bob has denied any wrongdoing in the matter.

"I don't need Jason's permission for anything I do. Besides, I always write my name on the white board with the double smiley faces for 0's. The Moody signature? Tell me who started copying that, Hoover-Sensei?"

The dispute threatens to fracture the entire ECC school into two groups. One supporting Bob. One side supporting Jason. Attempts by manager Yukie Asano to mediate between the two sides and reach a compromise have been unsuccessful. "We cannot expect all staffs to become friends every times. But we still need to show respect for each other," she said in a telephone interview.

"He (Bob) means nothing to me now. Not a friend, not even a co-worker. From now on, he doesn't even exist. I want all of my classes arranged so I don't see him. If he's going to be in the break room, I want to know in advance so I don't have to see his (expletive) face. From now on, I want my chair in our weekly ECC staff meeting facing the opposite direction so my back is turned to him."

Previously "unconventional, spontaneous man" who is "unafraid to take risks" discovers his life is exactly the same as every other expatriate guy in Japan

Adventurous, cultured Eikaiwa teacher persona, "largely fabricated," teacher admits

TOKYO, Japan (GTA) -- Growing up in sub-urban Cleveland, Eric Shore knew he wanted to do something different in life. In hopes of seeing the world, Shore set off for Japan and began what has turned into a four-year extended stay.

"No matter what road you take in life, I just can't be ordinary," mused the 26-year old English conversation teacher, while sipping a tall-size cappuccino inside the Starbucks near Yokohama station.

"So it's time to face the fact that I've got the exact same (expletive) up life as every other English teacher in this country. It clings and hangs around be like an aura, and everybody can see it."

Despite declaring a interest for "trying new things" and "living life to the fullest," Shore admitted those claims have been overstated.

"I know I put down 'Always willing to try new things!' on my Gaba profile, but let's be frank if you will. I think I'm more like a 'Willing to try a new brand of Belgium beer with a funny label instead of the usual Heineken' or 'I haven't heard about this movie but it has Billy Bob Thornton in it so, why not give it a try?' kind of guy."

Shore pointed several examples of his ordinariness, including purchasing a ticket to see Oceans 13 on the first day of release.

"I think I've been following some linear schedule ever since I got off the plane. I'm locked in and just passing one marker to the next. As I pass each stage, I find myself making the same awful jokes, using the same broken Japanese, date the same type of girl, and try to impress friends back home with tales of adventure when the truth is I eat subway, cook spaghetti, and watch more DVDs than one person should."

Shore, who normally would be spending a Saturday evening criticizing others while basking in self-congratulation, revealed he would retire completely from the practice of mocking Japanese salaryman culture until able to modify his own lifestyle in a way that was not completely "(expletive) typical" of "(expletive) English teacher culture."

Working at Gaba provides perfectly suitable alternative to homelessness

Foreigners get chance to find work, get back on their feet

TOKYO, Japan (GTA) -- Evan Rogers spent nearly six months, earning just enough to get by before finding work at Gaba Man-To-Man English.

At 28, the British-born teacher looks much older than his actual age. His face hardened by trying to make a living by any means possible. After leaving his former position as a NOVA English teacher to travel to Thailand, Evan found there were few positions available when he returned. In time, he became unable to pay his rent and was forced to vacate his one-room flat in Kichioji.

With only 40,000 yen remaining in his bank account, he took up residence in a "doya" hotel popular with one-day construction laborers.

"I met this fellow who taught me how to earn some extra yen. I collected magazines from trains or rubbish bins and sold them to a local used book shop for 40 yen apiece. 100 yen, if it's a porno. You'd be surprised how much you can make in a couple of hours. I guess I was getting 3,000 yen a day from that. Then, I found out about the garbage disposal sites at the pricey mansions. People would just toss away unopened wedding gifts, electronics, and other sorts of goods. We'd grab them at night and take them to the recycling shop in the morning to trade them in for cash. Other days, I took jobs working as a sandwichboard man for this adult video shop."

Earning cash this way provided Evan with the means to stay at various cheap saunas or catch a few hours of sleep at a manga cafe. For meals, Evan purchased discounted bread or instant ramen.

Eventually, though, Evan hoped to return back to a full-time position.

"One day, I came across an ad for Gaba Man-to-Man English in a newspaper somebody had thrown away."

"When I saw the advertisement for Gaba, I was worried at that I might not qualify. I was pretty lucky enough to get the job."

Social workers say that working at Gaba provides a much needed service that helps foreigners, like Evan, get back on their feet and escape the trap of homelessness.

"Before I had to do everything I could just to bring home 8,000 or 9,000 yen a day. But now that I'm teaching ten lessons, I pretty much can clear 10,000 yen, easily. Except on the days where 1 or 2 people cancel."

A homeless watch organization points out that many homeless foreigners in Japan are unaware that the Gaba program could potentially get them off the streets. As a result, many foreigners still choose to live life on the streets, scavenging for cans or cardboard, rather than seek help.

Tokyo N-missile strike: Millions of deaths, mass destruction could cause problems for following work week

(The following is part 8 in our series concerning the nuclear threat against Japan.)

TOKYO, Japan (GTA) -- At 5 a.m. on a mild Monday in April with a temperature of 24 Celsius and a wind from the northeast at 4.6 kph, a ballistic missile carrying a nuclear warhead suddenly strikes in the heart of Tokyo's Kamiyacho district. About 2 million people in the 23 Tokyo wards are instantly killed while about 1 million people are exposed to radiation. The greater metropolis area becomes a burning inferno.
Gaba Japan. English School.
All of these cases pose serious potential problems for Japanese commuters expected to be at work on time the following day.

Some analysts have described a "doomsday" scenario where a nuclear attack leads to millions of Tokyo workers unable to get to work in time.

"No doubt about it. A nuclear attack would be devastating on people's lives," explained Ursula Morrison from the Wales Aerospace Institute of Science. According to our simulations, the number of people who are late for work could reach as high as 10 million in the first week alone."
Gaba Japan. English School.
Some have accused these predictions of being irresponsible scare-mongering tactics. Yet, the fact remains that Japan is highly unprepared for the mass number of train delays and traffic congestion that would result from a Monday morning nuclear attack.

According to estimates, JR Railway claims to maintain a stockpile of 500,000 emergency train delay voucher slips at all times. However, a nuclear attack on central Tokyo would likely create a need for up to 10 million late slips, in the event of such a catastrophe.

"We all remember the chaos that followed in the hours of the Japan subway sarin gas attacks. Well, that merely made a few hundred thousand people late. Imagine the numbers caused by a nuclear strike. As you know, it is not a matter of if, but only a matter of when. By that previous expression, I mean to say it is inevitable," explained Tokyo Kiosk manager Junko Tatayama.

Any N-attack would very well throw Eikaiwa schedules into an apocalyptic nightmare.
Gaba Japan. English School.
"The English schools that are left standing in Japan will still have to find ways of rearranging schedules. There's going to be a few hectic days where most of the students do not show up for lessons. Teachers would need to be patient. There may be a lot of no-shows for the time being. We'd expect to see an increased effort in getting new students."

Former Gaba English teacher audaciously emphasizes "responsible for keeping detailed records of student progress" on CV

"Bold move" raises eyebrows among peers

TOKYO, Japan (GTA) -- Former GABA English teacher Geoffrey Stapleton's CV has earned lavish praise for its "boldness" and "take no prisoners" attitude by fellow co-workers.

"Brilliant," proclaimed Jennifer Urbanich who worked with Geoff from 2004 thru 2005. "...'acted as an unofficial liaison catering to the students needs as a counselor and translator?' Awesome. I have to borrow that for my own resume."

"Please it gets better, 'With a primary focus on business awareness, I was responsible for detailed planning at the acclaimed flagship school of the Gaba chain....' I didn't think it was possible to put groups of words together and have them sound so beautiful," Urbanich explained.

Stapleton, who is currently seeking a position where he can make the most of his skills as a 'facilitator of discussion" and "promotor of cultural awareness" also has an M.A. (in progress) and is CPR certified.

Editorial: GABA's condemnation of Ryan Caldwell's yawning problem, well-warranted, overdue


March 15th, 2007 -- On Saturday afternoon, GABA Corp. issued a formal statement condemning Ryan Caldwell's yawning incident.

Let us not be so naive to think that this is merely a trivial matter, or a "biological fact of life" as Ryan would so callously defend it. Nor can the blame be placed on any extensive vacation stories or tedious drilling exercises.

The truth is that there is no defense anyone could possibly make.

If Eikaiwa as an industry is ever to eradicate the problem of yawning once and for all, a strong message must be sent to those teachers repeatedly violate this fundamental rule.

Therefore, we stand side-by-side with GABA Corp. as we denounce Ryan Caldwell.

In Ryan's case, it is not an isolated event, but the latest incident for a person with a long history of yawning infractions during English conversation lessons.Gaba Nova complaints

November 2006 - Cited for yawning repeatedly during a student's mock presentation about the endocrine glands.
December 2006 - Cited for appearing agitated during an explanation about how to make green tea after student favored using only NEXT at the expense of THEN and AFTER THAT.
December 2006 - Cited for yawning and not wearing a tie.
February 2007 - Cited for yawning and multiple sighing.
March 2007 - Cited again for yawning and chewing gum.
Each time, Caldwell has signed a statement professing regret and promising avoid repeating the same mistakes. Yet, despite a long record of violations, he was curiously awarded with a brand new 4-month entrusted contract as recently as last month.

Time and time again, Caldwell has let us down. Let's hope Gaba chooses to make this the last time.



English teacher realizes boyhood dream of not ending up like parents

Teacher declares satisfaction with "five hundred yen, cigarettes, coffee, and some conversation English" over suburbia

TOKYO, Japan (GTA) -- Gaba instructor Troy Parks once vowed that he would never end up going down the same path his parents chose.

Now 33, Troy seems almost certain to accomplish his objective, after a 17-year battle against suburban angst that began in Ft. Wayne, Indiana.

"I remember my father's Bonneville. I thought that if I could just possess such a vehicle, that somehow I would be a satisfactory human being, provided I dutifully and faithfully maintained the appearance. All the time, though, I thinking that I'm not really even worth a Bonneville. More like a used Chevette. I'm just not cut for the challenge."

Troy's high school journal gradually become more radical throughout the 1990's, bringing sharp criticism against his father Ben Parks, currently retired from his position as senior avionics design engineer at Lockheed and Martin. In an entry dated February, 1996, Troy blasted middle-class values, even insinuating that his parents "lacked soul."

"What's going to be dad? Who do you love? Is it going to be your precious STAINMASTER carpet as usual? Meanwhile, mother. Will you be sure to replace our Glade Plug-Ins to adequately deodorize our home; all while our souls move impotently to an imminent death humanely provided in the TV gas chamber. Exactly, what is on TV tonight, mother? Will tonight be a new episode of Mad About You? God forbid they show a rerun, Mom. Or worse, the dreaded clip show?"

Troy, currently employed as a Gaba instructor in Kita Senju, explained that he no longer holds the same thoughts and claims that much of his earlier writing was influenced by the Rollins Band End of Silence album.

Still, Troy's path to teaching in Japan had its seminal roots in what he described as his frustration with the "mindless, unyielding, thirst of materialism." In his epic 1997 poem titled, 'Soaring from the wasteland of my discontent,' he offered a glimpse into the mind that would eventually lead to experimentation with Chomskysim and Communist tendencies during his turbulent collegiate years.

Ensconced
We are all trapped
In the womb
Of the insipid
Eggo Waffles for breakfast
Chef Boyardee for lunch
Assiduously, I play my part
Until I have nothing left to give
What you can call-my pathos
Is where, I will burn
I owe you nothing
You have no control
Currently earning approximately 230,000 yen a month, Troy claims he has little difficulty strictly adhering to his anti-materialistic views, which can be traced back to the Fugazi Repeater album

"You can't be what you own. After teaching English conversation in Japan for 9 years, who needs a leaf blower or a toaster or a telephone line?" he asked.

"Give me 500 yen, some tabako, some Eikaiwa lessons. You keep the styrofoam. I take the CalorieMate."

English rapidly becoming heaven's language

Eikaiwa schools struggle to recruit new teachers

HEAVEN, Universe (GTA) -- Statistics show that English is expected to surpass Latin as the most-widely used language in Heaven by 2009. Meanwhile, as the number of English speaking inductees increases, so have the number of English conversation schools. In addition, English books, tapes, CDs, and radio programs are everywhere as students hope to meet and converse with more people.

According to the Vatican, which remains in close contact to Heaven, there will not be enough English teachers available to fill the growing demand. Schools cannot hire qualified teachers fast enough.

Heaven Eikaiwa has become so popular recently, that even Jesus Christ himself recently purchased a two-hundred block of tickets for Nova.

Jesus
Present Perfect: The Last Frustration of Christ

"Jesus comes twice a week to my lesson. I asked him why he wanted to study English and he said that he wanted to meet and speak to lots of foreigners and maybe even travel to America someday," said Heaven Nova teacher Glenn Schumacher. "Plus, He says that he wants to watch movies without any sub-titles."

Like many students who are beginners, Jesus Christ has had his difficulties with the language.

"Sometimes I wonder why He comes at all. Even He acknowledges that he has no time to study. Recently, I gave "Him" a level-up check and asked Him what his hobbies were,"
Glenn explained.

"He just said (imitates thick Aramaic accent) 'I like sleeping.' When I encouraged Him to expand, He just refused say anything for three whole minutes. Then, I almost thought that He was going to start crying. I ended up boosting Him up to level 6B, but that was just a mercy-level up," he added.
Jesus struggles
Jesus also struggles to level-up. Possible son of God.

"Oh, sure. He does comes to Voice Room sometimes. But, if you ask him what He wants to talk about, he'll just say 'I don't know' or 'Anything is OK.'," Schumacher recalled.

"As if He expects you to do all the work for him. It is no wonder He doesn't improve."

When asked what he likes best about Nova, Christ commented that the Christmas party last year was really, really fun. He was happy that teachers explained what a Christmas tree was and even participated in singing Christmas carols with the Nova Teachers.

JC is not the only 'celebrity' interested in studying English conversation.

Other students include: Martin Luther, who "comes late to class" and "spits when he talks," Queen Victoria who apparently just "wants a boyfriend," and Mussolini, who has "terrible stank breath," and St. Aquinas who refuses to give anybody a good evaluation unless they are all "super genki and stuff."

GABA instructor denies coming to Japan to eat Japanese people

Popular teacher continues to provide quality lessons despite controversy

TOKYO, Japan (GTA) -- Magawi Tentosi, a 34-year old expatriate from Papau, New Guinea who came to Japan on a Specialist in Humanities visa to teach conversation English, admitted to being a cannibal this Thursday. The instructor still remains adamant that he did not, in fact, come to Japan merely to eat Japanese people, as some have accused.

Instructor
Instructor hopes to expand horizons, focus on career rather than pursue cannibalism.

"Absolutely false," the former fisherman and communications major stated. "I've eaten plenty of people from New Guinea. Why would I need to come to Japan to eat people. People raised on a nice diet of rice and fish."

Janice Daly (24) has questioned Magawi's dedication to teaching by suggesting that Malwai "probably couldn't eat people in his hometown." She pointed to Malawi's attention to "plumper" students at the Ginza LS Valentines Day party as examples of his disturbing behavior.

"I watched him practically hang all over one businessman, saying things like, 'I'd really like to cook you' and 'You are a very deliciouis looking snack.' It was really creepy since he's too old to be an English teacher in the first place."

Still, according to Frank Anderson, Gaba's director of Client Concerns, the reviews of Magawi's lessons have been overwhelmingly posititive, and students appreciate his inimitable approach and the infectuous enthusiasm he brings to his lessons.

"Sadly, a client did flag Mr. Magawi with a 2 in the professionalism category for his 'aggressive nibbling,' yet the overall lesson was still regarded as a solid 5, for structure."

He also added that GABA has "always embraced diversity, and is commited to providing a place where people from all walks of life can thrive in the unique GABA system."

Co-worker Brent Mazzola defended Magawi.

"He's a cannibal. Let's just get out in the open. Cannibals do very bad things. On the other hand, Magawi has always been a team player with a passion for teaching English conversation. I wish I could say the same for the non-cannibals at our learning studio."

Magawi says his primary focus remains providing quality English conversation instruction while taking his best shot at level 2 of the Japanese Proficiency Examination. Still, this appears to be contradicted by an alleged facebook posting, in which Magawi may have boasted, "Cannot wait to go to Japan. Want to eat anyone that moves...and break a whole lotta s---."

Another instructor who requested anonymity because of the sensitive nature of the situation, alleged Magawi has probably eaten at least six students. According to the source, however, management is unwilling to discipline because of his popluarity and high student return-rate.

Gaba to ask for reimbursement for free Subway meals handed out at past branch meetings


TOKYO, Japan (GTA) -- GABA Corp. released a statement announcing they would be seeking reimbursement for past expenditures, including Subway and Pizza La provided to teachers attending branch meetings.

subway
Subway handouts no longer a luxury as Eikaiwa teachers asked to make sacrifice
"This is about fairness. We buy you a 6-inch turkey breast sub. Then, return the favor," announced GABA CFO Kenshi Asano. "This is the foundation of any professional relationship. I hook you up, now you hook me up the next time."

GABA Corp. add that the funds received would be allocated to the purchase of advertisements on the Yamanote line.

"We need this. If this next ad gets the kind of response that we think it will, everything is going to turn around. Everyone just needs to stick together and make a few sacrifices," pleaded Asano. "Just give us the god-damned money back for the subs, what's wrong with you people."

The initial Subway sandwich program was ridiculed by the Eikaiwa industry at the time for its profligacy. Many said that Gaba had 'crossed the line.' However the program was allowed to continue from 2003 thru 2008 without any regulations or oversight.

"When you consider the free Subway sandwiches and the lavish expenditures on bean bags, lava lamps, and various ceramic eggs, there needs to be a reckoning. Someone should take responsibilty," wrote Eric Krugman, colomnist from ESL Reports. "We're talking about losses up to a hundred thousand yen or more."

Teachers throughout the eikaiwa industry are facing cutbacks in key benefits as top schools such as AEON are expected to slash subscriptions to the Japan Times, while several Berlitz branches have already stopped their subscription to Newsweek in an effort to secure precious working capital needed to sustain activities.

Instuctor Michael Paul complained that the cutbacks would leave teachers with little to do. "What are teachers going to do? All we can do now is play guitar and toss around the football on the roof."



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The Gaba Teachers Association: Serving teachers at Gaba Japan, Nova Japan, Geos Japan, Aeon Japan, ECC Japan, and Berlitz Japan since 1995. The Gaba Teachers Association is dedicated to reporting the latest news from the English school industry. This is a site for that covers all news that impacts those who teach English in Japan. If you are teaching English at NOVA, GEOS, Berlitz, ECC or any other Eikaiwa school, check us out.
The GABA TEACHERS ASSOCIATION is the most provoc-ative name in eikaiwa news today. Since 1995, the Gaba Teachers Association has been dedicated to reporting the latest news from the English school industry in Japan.



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