Monday, 24 October 2011

Coz deponent verbs are typically passive in form but active in meaning and their participles thus take the form but not the meaning of the perfect passive participle... WHAT THE FUCK DOES THAT MEAN?!?

So where was I? Oh yeah, about that job.

Well, remember that interview where I basically professed my love for the male form to my prospective employer? Well, I got the job. And they wanted me to start immediately.

So what exactly do I do? Well... don't laugh ok... I can hear some of my relatives sniggering in the background... how do I say this...

I'm a teacher!

Not just any teacher mind you, I'm an English teacher. Not just any English teacher mind you, I work at an institute and I teach English to foreigners; particularly Brazilians, Cubans, Argentinians, Japanese, Koreans, Chinese, Moroccans, Turkish and various French and Portuguese speaking people from most African countries. The demographics are dynamic. My "students" are mostly professionals i.e. Lawyers, Doctors, Engineers, Economists etc.

And what can I say... other than so far, so good. Many people already know that this is what I've wanted to do for a long time now, and so this opportunity came along at the right time.

It's very different from what I've been accustomed to and it's been very challenging especially since I've been literally thrown in the deep end. What this means is that even though one of my degrees is in English and it's my Mother-tongue, I often have to learn stuff before I teach it. Stuff like deponent verbs and reinforcing that the gerundive is sometimes considered the future passive participle, although it is more of the jussive mood than the future tense. Seriously, WTF?! Now there's a term I know very well.

Anyway, it's been a trying week and I've been swamped with work... having to give lengthy classes, catch up on the previous month's activities and examine the changing face of language education in the technological era blah blah blah... I've been emotionally, mentally and physically drained. And it seems my new employer has some high expectations from me, having literally pushed me into a research project she's working on and having me do a paper, A PAPER, on my findings! Bleh. If only I had so much faith in myself.

So for the past week I've been seriously winging it. Taking it all in my stride. Just going with the flow, swimming along. And I find that even though I'm exhausted and it's been a learning curve of note, the change itself has been an epiphany of sorts. I'm more at ease than I've ever been at work. EVER. It's like a breath of fresh air.

Now excuse me, I have to go and find out what the hell is a Gerund.


  1. That sounds great!

    Happy for you Azra
    Good luck :)

  2. Haha I'm a teacher but work with children although some adults behave like children so same difference!

    You'll love it!! It's exciting, every day is different and you'll always get some smart arse trying to prove they know more than you. Best thing to do is use your sarcastic dry wit....and they'll never get it!! hehe

    Sorry if there's a double comment - blogger playing up.

  3. I suggest the first thing you do is teach them how to curse properly. There is nothing more annoying than hearing someone try to curse in your native tongue and having them screw it up. :D Good luck girl, though I have no doubt you'll kick the jobs ass before it kicks yours!

  4. I believe that the girl's name 'Amanda' is a gerund. Maybe you could use that as an example for your students. Oh wait, it's Latin not English!

  5. Congrats and the best of luck in teaching this ridiculously illogical language.

  6. Aw...that sounds so awesome. So glad you took the plunge! From what I know of you, this suits you much better than corporate crap. And hey, here is yet another chance to meet great and wonderful people from all over the GLOBE!

    I wish you oodles of luck. It is said English is one of the more complicated languages so you're a very brave soul to teach it!

  7. Congratulation on your employment. Wish you all the best of classes to teach.
    My favorite teachers were those who taught us english(literature and grammar). Found them to be more liberal and relaxed.

  8. Ahhh!! CONGRATS on the job!! I can relate to the swimming along - but I can tell you're already a terrific teacher! :) English is my native tongue as well, and you'll be amazed at how much you still learn through teaching it! Best of luck, I'm so very happy for you - this is a great change, and a VERY good start. Here's to new beginnings, love! ;)

  9. Oh wow-that's wonderful Azra. You've been wanting change for a while now, & you've been wanting to teach.

    It sounds like it will be very fulfilling.

    I think I'd better brush up on grammar rules too-I got lost somewhere between deponent & gerundive.

  10. No word in the English language rhymes with month.

    "Dreamt" is the only English word that ends in the letters "mt".

    The word "set" has more definitions than any other word in the English language.

    "Underground" is the only word in the English language that begins and ends with the letters "und."

    The longest one-syllable word in the English language is "screeched."

    There are only four words in the English language which end in"-dous": tremendous, horrendous, stupendous, and hazardous.

    The longest word in the English language, according to the Oxford English Dictionary, is pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis.

    The only other word with the same amount of letters is pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconioses, its plural.

    There is a seven letter word in the English language that contains ten words without rearranging any of its letters, "therein": the, there, he, in, rein, her, here, here, ere, therein, herein.

    No words in the English language rhyme with orange, silver or purple.

    'Stewardesses' is the longest word that is typed with only the left hand.

    To "testify" was based on men in the Roman court swearing to a statement made by swearing on their testicles.

    The combination "ough" can be pronounced in nine different ways. The following sentence contains them all: "A rough-coated, dough-faced, thoughtful ploughman strode through the streets of Scarborough; after falling into a slough, he coughed and hiccoughed."

    The verb "cleave" is the only English word with two synonyms which are antonyms of each other: adhere and separate.

    The only 15 letter word that can be spelled without repeating a letter is "uncopyrightable."

    If your students get that down, they'll be ahead of most English linguists.

  11. Luckily for you, colleague, you happen to know a very experienced English teacher / former linguist in case you get lost... but do tell me, Azra, are you teaching English or linguistics, for if you teach practical English, surely you don't even want to discuss deponent verbs, or don't you - poor you - have a choice?
    - Randy

  12. sady -
    Thanks :)

    SI -
    I do find that everyday is different and I love the interaction with foreign students ;)

    Angie -
    I have many french-speaking students cursing in a french accent which is quite funny :)

    GB -
    Thanks for trying to help. I thought it better to teach them what a Preposition is first :)

    Colin -
    At least it's the start I was looking for yeah?

    Prixie -
    Thanks lady. Yeah, I can't do the office setting anymore.

    Fathima -
    Thanks :) I'm just taking each day as it comes!

    Michi -
    Aw thanks. I owe you an email lady!

    bb_aisha -
    Thanks. The constant interaction with foreign nationals makes me less antagonistic about being in SA ;)

    LL -
    WOW. Thanks for that. I'll be sure to let them know :)

    RCB - I'm teaching both English and Linguistics Randy. Although, it's not a defined set of work in the linguistics sector. I'm sure you'll be hearing a lot from me haha!

  13. I'm an English teacher in the making and yes even with multiple degrees, you never seem to have all the answers. Oh and why is it that people think we will ace them at Scrabble? :P

  14. Congrats on your new job, sounds fantastic! Now if only I could attend some of your classes to remind myself what a gerund is.

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  16. I'm imagining a "Mind Your Language" classroom scene, this is gonna be fun.
    I still think you should open a restaurant, your cooking posts were edible.

    @LL- I can type pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis with only my left hand and does that mean that women can't testify in court ?

  17. SS - I'm impressed with you "pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis" skills. The classroom is challenging and entertaining... we'll see where it takes me :)