Noel, Noel

"In life, he suffered from a sense of unreality, as do many Englishmen."
- Jorge Luis Borges

How long is a keyboard supposed to last before it develops a serious fault? A year? Two years? How about less than a month?

My CELTA graduation present was a spiffy new miniature USB keyboard, to replace the three year old built in keyboard on my laptop, which had five keys non-responsive. It was light, nicely designed, and fit easily into a small shoulderbag. And the letter L has just stopped working. Odd how losing just one letter from a keyboard makes it almost impossible to use.

So what am I typing this on? An obsolete second-hand keyboard that's at least five years old, and still works perfectly.

A small insight into the mentality of police officers. Sometimes police exceed the speed limit, sometimes they get caught by their nominal colleagues, and sometimes they get a speeding ticket as a result.

This site argues that law enforcers should be above the traffic laws. Apparently it's called "Professional Courtesy".

Quis custodiet...?

How about a pagan Christmas?

It shouldn't be too difficult. You just need a indoor tree symbolising the circle of life, songs no one understands lead by men in robes, and alcohol.

Oh hang on. It's the Festival of Saturn I'm thinking of.

(Image from the "Oh My Gods" pagan comic strip)

The school in Vietnam got back to me, asking that I reconsider. They say costs can be spread over the year so I pay less up front - oh, and beer is as cheap as water there. They're obviously a bit desperate but...I don't think so. The "hidden" costs may be spreadable, but I'd still be basically breaking even after a year.

A different school sent me an email, just hours after I put my CV up on an EFL site. They have branches in...Vietnam! Plus Taiwan, Cambodia and China. After perusing the site, I'm dubious - the pay isn't great, and the don't always reimburse flights.

Plus, I'd be teaching large classes of children, a prospect that doesn't fill me with joy. I like the company of individual children occasionally, but 25 hours a week with 50 of them...not really me.

Am I being too picky? I'll decide on the basis of whatever response I get from the East European schools.

After trying out several chairs, I've found the thing to to sit on that gives me exactly the right height to type at my computer. It's my other computer.

Current reading: Short stories of Jorge Borges. There's not many times summaries of the works make me want to read the original ("original", in translation), but this is one of those times.

Do I do too much politics sometimes? Answers on a postcard please. But in the meantime, here's a link to one more indication that rightwingnuttery is (a) in the mainstream and (b) undergoing meltdown anyway. The biggest coverup conspiracy theory since Alternative 3. Fnord.

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