It’s been a pretty good past few days. Thursday I woke up at the crack of dawn (which is 7:30AM for me), to prepare for the IUSTV Advisory Board meeting. Got that all taken care of, and we have a bunch of Panera bagels for the meeting as well. Getting together all this stuff to present to the faculty and staff advisors, including an “annual summary” of goals and accomplishments, really made me realize how much has gotten done this year. Having all the current and incoming execs there, and a lot of the staff, it was good. I’m pretty proud. Also, Panera asiago cheese bagels taste like gourmet Cheez-Its.

Came back from the advisory board meeting with a bunch of leftover bagels, and took a nap for a while before my classes (yes, I am still actually taking classes). Did all that, and went to the office for a bit. Then it was the big night: the IUSTV Banquet. This year’s was a big change from last year’s; instead of a decent sized room at the Union, we went to the Mayfield’s Ballroom/MCL Cafeteria over on the west side of town. Until the day prior, when I went to go check the place out when Kaylyn and Jenny were setting things up, I had never stepped foot in the place. It was much much nicer than I would have imagined. When I heard “cafeteria,” I just thought of an old persons restaurant with some buffet lines and such, like an Old Country Buffet. Quite the contrary. The ballroom was really a nice ballroom, and it was many times nicer than the Union’s rooms. Also, you wouldn’t expect this, but pretty much every employee at the place was a hot chick. I would have expected old ladies. The actual banquet was really nice as well; the dinner was buffet style fried chicken, which was maybe a little messier than you would want for a somewhat formal event like this, but it was really good either way. Sean said there must have been a black woman cooking in the back, so I guess that means it’s not just me who thought it was good eatin. Also, I was luckily warned of the walnuts in the green beans, otherwise I would have probably taken a bite and had an allergy attack, which might have put a damper on the evening. Especially if I would have died, haha. But seriously, who puts walnuts in green beans??

People made some short speeches, and I did as well. I probably should have planned out a longer, more appropriate speech, but I don’t think anyone really would have wanted to listen to that. I did realize (and say) that if I wouldn’t have joined IUSTV, I wouldn’t have met most of the people who were at the banquet. Who knows what I would be up to if it weren’t for all of this. Brian also gave me a shout out, and I got some applause, so that was nice. This is kinda what it must feel like to retire, I guess. All in all, the banquet was awesome, and Kaylyn (my office assistant/exec director apprentice) did a good job of pulling something together that I never could have. Girls are better at party planning anyway I guess (not to be stereotypical).

Huge afterparty at Kyle’s house that night. It was probably one of the best parties all year, ranking right up there with the A-Team Halloween Reunion (a different kind of awesomeness though). Had so many IUSTV people at the party, it was great. To be honest, it might have been the last time I will see a lot of people, so that was another reason for everyone to party down. Wow I sound like an old man there. Anyway, although we didn’t make it to our goal of staying up until McDonald’s breakfast time, I was out there until around 3:30AM, when I came home and promptly fell asleep until the afternoon. The next day, I woke up and goofed around at home until a class discussion I went to. On my way back from campus, got a phone call from Rob at Aeon, and I called him back when I got home. I knew that I had the job, since I talked to him on Monday. I was just waiting on the placement information. And that’s what he was calling about.

So they found me a placement in Chiba prefecture. Ichihara City, which is not all that far away from Makuhari or Ichikawa, where I spent last summer and the fall before on my many adventures. Ichihara is a bit more suburban/industrial/smaller than what I was ideally looking for, but hey it sounds like a pretty darn good offer. It’s an Aeon school that has both adults and younger students. It’s about 40% business professionals, 30% college and high school students, 5% housewives, and 25% younger kids. The station nearest my Aeon branch school would be Goi station (五井) on the Uchibo line. Now, according to Ekitan, my handy-dandy guide to the mess that is the Japanese transit system, Goi station is about an hour train ride from Myoden (where I lived last year), and Tokyo Station itself. About 30 minutes to good old Kaihim-Makuhari. Ichihara/Goi is a little further south than the area I know and love, but I think this might be about as close as I can get with a somewhat random job placement that these companies all do. Also, Goi is about 5 stops away from Kisarazu city, the hometown of Kishidan!!!! That there might be enough reason to go. Here’s a map to help you (and me) understand where Goi station is.
Aeon offer map
There’s only 1 other foreign teacher at the branch, 2 full time Japanese, and 3 part time Japanese. Seems like a pretty small joint, but that might not be too bad. And since the school is at Goi station, I’m assuming I’d be living pretty close to there. If I lived a bit more in the Makuhari/Tokyo direction, that would be perfect. I have until about Wednesday to call them and give them my decision. Not a lot of time. But still, I think this sounds pretty good. The pay isn’t as much as the Sears job, but since pretty much everyone and their brother is telling me to avoid a cubicle job and get out and explore the world, I think Aeon sounds pretty good. I’m going up with Brian tomorrow to Chicago, since we’re interviewing with Nova on Monday morning. I’m pretty sure I’m just going to tell them straight, “if you guys can get me a placement in Tokyo and tell me by Wednesday, you can hire me. If not, I’m going with Aeon.” Sounds kind of asshole-ish, I know, but it’s the truth. I’m pretty much hoping that will give me some bargaining power. If not, then I wouldn’t be able to wait around for their answer anyway. Aeon demands my answer soon!

So what do you people think? I could either go with Aeon and go to Japan, with a pretty sweet placement, try to find a different job, go with Sears and work in a Chicago cubicle job, or I could just be homeless and jobless (that really isn’t an option). Right now I’m leaning towards doing Aeon. Hmmm… This is a pretty big decision.

If I end up going with Aeon, I wouldn’t have to depart until September 7, so I would also need to figure out what I’d be doing between graduation on May 6 and that. I have my apartment lease in Bloomington until the end of July, so I’d likely stay here and do something, maybe work in a restaurant again while helping out IUSTV. We’ll see. This post is already obscenely long, so I’m going to end it here. I have a few other minor weekend reports to write about, like the party I went to where I made smalltalk with a girl about the Crayola Crayons 128 pack with built-in sharpener, but I’ll have to save those for another day. I’m tired, and need to sleep so I can drive to Chicago in the morning/early afternoon.