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A-Team Second Reunion

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Yoroshiku!
This post won’t be as long as my E3 one, but it will probably still be pretty long. Also note that I spent over an hour writing this, but then Firefox decided to crash on me (does that even happen?) so I lost the whole thing. This second version will either be better and more concise, since I’ve already done it once, or worse because I am tired and lazy. We all got together this past weekend for the second A-Team reunion. It was an awesome time; better even than Halloween I think. Bryan lives in Chicago, Ari was able to shuffle his flight back to LA from school, and Seth Brian and Nick had interviews at AEON on Thursday. So everything kind of worked out and we got to all meet up and be awesome.

I drove up on Wednesday afternoon with Nick and Brian. Arrived later than planned (as Ari predicted), and we played Cube for the night. Good times. The next day, Ari and I went to go meet up at Brian’s hotel downtown, where he and Nick stayed so they could be close to AEON. Seth and Mikey got in early that morning from their Amtrak ride. Me, Ari and Mikey went to lunch with Bryan while the other 3 got ready for their interviews. We got some Giordano’s Chicago pizza, and there was a typhoon so Bryan had to take a 2 hour lunch break. Oops! Anyways, after that me Ari and Mikey went to explore downtown Chicago a bit, since we had an afternoon to kill. one hell of a bean We first stopped at the giant bean, which is massive and shiny, as you can see in our reflections here. After that, we went to some tourist information building to get out of the rain, and some overenthusiastic guide there was telling us about some of the buildings and stuff downtown. According to him, almost everything we asked us about “incidentally, is the largest ___ in the world,” which I didn’t really believe but it was funny anyway. Eventually decided to go back to the AEON building to meet up with the other guys, but this turned into a 2 or 3 hour walk around all of Chicago, since we kept getting lost. We passed about 30 each of Starbucks, Dunkin Donuts, and McDonalds as well. Eventually, met up with everyone, and went to Shin Jung for yakiniku paradise. Good (no, amazing) as always. Mikey re-established Chicken County, which was later invaded by calbi town, haha. I ate so much there that I was pretty much “drunk on meat” and was tired as heck. As soon as we got back, after parking about 15 minutes away (residential parking in Chicago sucks, more info later), I passed out for the night.

Friday was a pretty lazy day. Ate at this Mexican place near Bryan’s, where the cook looked like Horatio Sanz and had some mysterious stains all over his apron. It was a good burrito though. Drove downtown to pick up Brian and get everyone’s stuff out of the hotel, which took a long time since traffic and our directions were pretty bad. After that mini-adventure, we went to the Tower Records on Clark for an autograph session with some of the Play! Symphony people. Watched Angela Aki perform her theme song for Final Fantasy XII, and got her signature along with Nobuo Uematsu’s (the guy that composes all the FF music). Arnie Roth, the conductor for the symphony, was also there, but I didn’t know it was him since he wasn’t really signing stuff, and I just thought he was a translator. I don’t think I’m the only one who made this mistake. Mikey had Uematsu sign his DS, and I heard Uematsu say “もったいないですな,” which means “what a waste/shame,” trying to imply that he wasn’t worthy of signing the DS (a way of humbling himself). It was cool to hear him say that. Also Angela Aki happens to be the daughter of the president of AEON, so that’s a kind of cool connection.

The next day was pretty much our nerdiest day. We woke up and got breakfast at this place near Bryan’s, some diner, then on the way back went to an old arcade that was kind of dark and outdated, but still cool because they had some decent games including Time Crisis 2, which is always fun in the arcades. Went back to Bryan’s and did our routine of playing Gamecube and watching MXC on Tivo while taking turns showering and using the bathroom, which with 7 people usually took about 2 hours. We drove out to Mitsuwa, the Japanese shopping center, to do some grocery shopping and for dinner. Had miso ramen for the first time in almost a year; it was great. There were a lot of nerds and otaku at Mitsuwa, as predicted, including this chick in a green shirt that we couldn’t tell if she was pregnant or just fat. Either way she was butt. I got a picture on my cell phone, which became the “Yuji scary face” trick picture for the rest of the trip. After Mitsuwa, we went to the Rosemont Theatre to see the Play! Symphony, which was kind of a last minute plan but definitely worth it. It was an orchestra performing video game music from Final Fantasy, Mario, Zelda, and a lot of other sweet games. It was a really good performance, with the only negative being the idiots in the audience, almost all otaku and other social ingrates who don’t know how to act in public let alone in a symphony hall. I mean, it’s video game music, but still you have to have some respect for the performers. People would yell things out, laugh, and etc at inappropriate moments. I felt bad for the conductor and orchestra. Koji Kondo (wiki article here), the guy behind video game music such as the Mario theme everyone knows and Donkey Kong, etc did a solo piano performance of the New Super Mario Bros theme, which was awesome. He was rocking out on the piano, and idiots in the audience were laughing and stuff. I really wanted to go kick some people in the face, but I just sat back and enjoyed the music. I could have done without the PC game music (the nerds loved it though), but overall a great concert, no matter how nerdy.

Sunday we woke up and did our normal routine of taking turns showering and getting cleaned up and playing Cube while waiting for people . We headed out to see X-Men 3, which was pretty good. A little cheesy at times, but for a comic book movie it was good. Worth watching for sure. I won’t spoil anything, but definitely stick around after the credits for the secret scene if you go see it. Arclight (I think that’s who it was) had the worst haircut ever; short and greased up but with a thick curly-Q on the front. Me and Seth kept cracking up everytime she showed up. At least I think it was a chick; couldn’t really tell. After the movie, we went to get some more Chicago pizza, then walked around Northwestern campus. It’s a lot different from IU, but still pretty nice. We saw a sign for a Bunkasai, but it was already closing up. Walked around for a few hours, including around their lake, where we saw some old guy on a tandem bicyle playing old showtunes or something on a book box. Come on! A-Teaming Wrigley Went back to Bryan’s to hang out and reminisce about the old days in Japan, going through the old stories, making fun of the scabes, and watching the Spider-Man video. Good times. After Bryan shotgunned 3 beers, it was time to go out and get some late night food. Mikey was in top form, kicking stuff, running off, tachi shonben-ing, etc. We passed on the McDonalds walk-up widow line and went to IHOP, which was close but just so happened to be in the gay district, meaning that the clientele at 2AM there was very interesting to say the least. I didn’t know that anyone actually rocked the leather pants and leather vest with no shirt, but I saw it there. Brian, who was wearing a Parks Department shirt or something, got hit on by some old guy, which was hilarious because the conversation went as follows.

Guy: So, do you work at the parks department?
Bryan: Not anymore.
Guy: Oh, so you used to?
Bryan: No.

That was hilarious. I don’t know if Bryan was even coherent enough to know what he was saying, but it was genius. After that, the old guy went back to his table and high-fived the guy he was sitting with.

BBQ in the backyard

The next day, Monday, was Memorial Day, so Shin Jung was closed. Bryan found another yakiniku buffet place, but they wanted to charge dinner prices, so we all decided against it because we were all very poor by now. Grilled burgers and hot dogs at Bryan’s place, which was good times. A fine wrap up to the A-Team Reunion. Oh but the adventures don’t stop there. The previous night, I had parked next to Wrigley Field, which is a few blocks from Bryan’s apartment. The sign said no parking on game days, and I figured there wouldn’t be a game the next day, and there were other cars on the street at like 11 when I got there. After the BBQ, I’m walking down the street and see all the commotion and crowds at Wrigley. Yeah. There was a game alright. I got that sinking feeling in my stomach as I got to the street, and I knew what was coming. My car, along with any other cars that might have been there, were gone; towed. Bryan gave us a ride to the impound that afternoon and after waiting in line for a long time, I finally got things straighted out. Since the car is registered to my parents, I couldn’t pay with credit card and had to go get cash. There were some girls there that were having the same type of problems, so we all went together to get cash at an ATM a few blocks away. On the way, we passed by a mini-gang of like 9 15 year olds, one of whom was carrying half a bottle of brandy or something (hobo brand, I’m sure). Not soon after we passed them, they threw a bottle of OJ and booze at us! It didn’t really get or splash us that bad, but it was kind of funny. I’m not sure if it was because they heard me mention the brandy to Bryan, because I was Chinese, because everyone else I was with was white, or because there was Cubs and Cardinals and college clothing among the group, but whatever. Wasn’t worth trying to do or say anything.

After waiting in lines for another 30 minutes or so and paying my hefty $160 fee, I got my car back and we were home free. I wasn’t that upset, since it was pretty much my fault for parking there, but you still have to complain when stuff like that happens. I figure it’s just karma for the 0 tickets I’ve gotten at IU, even when I part in ridiculous spots like the fire lane at the Union. Apparently there was a curse on all of us, because Ari’s flight got delayed to the next day for weather related problems (there was line of 100 planes waiting to leave O’Hare), and Mikey and Seth’s train was delayed at least a few hours. Chicago just didn’t want us to leave. Got back home to Bloomington a little after 1AM.

It was a great weekend overall, got to see everyone and live up the good times from Japan. I think most if not all of us will be back in Japan to work this coming fall, so the next reunion just might be at Y’s, where we will reclaim the holy ground. 夜露死苦! 機械犬! ワンワン!

AEON Interview

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Time to summarize the AEON interview experience. I actually wouldn’t be surprised if someone (aside from friends/people who usually read this) finds this sometime in the future via Google or some search engine, in hopes of preparing or learning more for their own upcoming AEON interview. I actually did this myself before my interview, stumbling upon this blog, which gave me some pretty good insight into what to expect at the interview. So here you go, future AEON interviewee: you also get a look at what to expect. Everyone else: this is a really long post, so don’t feel like you have to read it (of course, every other post, you are REQUIRED to read 4 times over in its entirety).

I actually applied online back in October or November for AEON, just knowing that it was one of the big English school in Japan. Within a week (it might have actually been even sooner than that), I got a call from their Chicago office asking if I’d like to come up for an interview. Knowing that I wouldn’t be graduating until May, I postponed it. They called me back again in January, and I finally scheduled an interview for March 16. I drove up to Chicago the night before, and checked into a hotel. I had most of my application materials they requested printed and ready to go, with the exception of my demo lesson plan: you’re supposed to have a 15 minute lesson plan written up, with the understanding that you’ll actually demonstrate 5 minutes of it. Now, until I actually did some research (by reading other peoples blogs), I had assumed this would have been something fairly basic. I read, however, that some people did things much more elaborate, and felt that I should do the same. I mean, if more people were doing things like that, I should probably do the same to “stay competitive.” After putting it off until the morning of, I wrote out a 3 page lesson plan on “What is there to do in Tokyo,” complete with vocab words, a handout diagram, and 3 conversational phrase structures for the students to practice. It actually looked pretty good I think.

I arrive at the interview place about 15 or 20 minutes before the 1PM interview time. Actually, I realized later that the time was supposed to be 1:30; good thing my mistake got me there early rather than later. They were located on the 21st floor of this huge building in downtown Chicago, sharing a large office suite space with a law firm or something. Since I was there so freaking early, I was sitting in the waiting area for almost an hour. Great. Of course I was the first one there. The second person to arrive was a guy wearing khakhis and a tie; let’s call him Muttonchops. I found out later that this guy with the huge sideburns was from Oklahoma and he worked in a Japanese restaurant. That seemed to be his main motivation for applying. Third person to come was a tall guy who looked really nervous, wearing a suit and a big bookbag, and he had a really skinny neck. Let’s call him Neck. Last to arrive was a girl who seemed to be escorted to the office by her dad (or a really old boyfriend maybe?); we’ll call her The Chick. We now have our cast of characters set up so I can keep telling my story. And yes, it was just 4 of us interviewing; I really thought there would have been more.

The interviewers/presenters from AEON were 3: a Japanese lady and two American guys. We entered the conference room and they start off by talking about the program, the company, and all that stuff. We then watched some videos, showing the “making of” and then the actual finished products for 2 of the AEON commercials airing on Japanese TV. One is starring Ai Kato, the other was a famous Japanese dude who I’ve seen on posters and stuff (including the AEON ones) in trains, and maybe TV also. These were kind of cool and interesting to watch. Huge sets, camera set ups, tons of extras, and even a crane and tracks were all used for these commercials. After that video, we got to watch another longer video about a Day in the Life of an AEON teacher. It was mainly focused on this freaky looking old white lady, who taught at the AEON branch school right near MotoYawata Station (本八幡), where I actually have been several times (it was only about 3 stops away from Nishi). Freaky, obviously staged video, but it was interesting to watch anyway. After that video, Neck stands up and goes to talk to one of the AEON guys outside the room. Since the conference room wall was big and all glass, it was only good for blocking the sound. After they talked for a few seconds, Neck comes back in to grab his bag and he leaves. I guess it was too much for him; I have no idea. Maybe he didn’t like to idea of living in a small Japanese apartment (the one in the video was almost exactly like mine over the summer).

So all that’s left now is me, The Chick, and Muttonchops. The recruiters talked some more, then we had a break. I got to talk to the other 2 candidates a little bit during that time, which was good because we needed a little more familiarity for the next part of the session: the demo lessons. We each had to stand up and introduce ourselves, give some info on why we applied, and then give our 5 minutes of fame. Actually I don’t think any of us actually used up all 5 minutes, but that’s cool. The Chick apparently is studying education for kids with speech impediments or something like that, so her lesson was geared towards little kids (complete with an old McDonald’s Farm book and cards). Muttonchops’ wasn’t bad, but it seemed very short and basic. My lesson wasn’t bad, but since the other 2 interviewees weren’t actually Japanese and thus didn’t know anything about Tokyo, it wasn’t as smooth as I had written out. Either way, it went well. After that, we talked again about AEON, and had to fill out a form. One part was a survey/short answer thing about AEON and living in Japan, including “what if” ones like “what would you do to help your school manager attract more students.” The other side of the paper was 5 English grammar questions (circle the part of each sentence that is incorrect), which was harder than you would think. I haven’t taken a class on English grammar since maybe sophomore year of high school, and actually had to think hard about 1 or 2 of the questions. After that was taken care of, we gave them our papers and waited for about 10 or 15 minutes (watching the end of the Tennessee game).

After waiting what seemed like a really long time, the AEON people came back to greet us goodbye for the day and to tell us whether or not we got a second interview. Rather than just telling us straight up, they gave each one of us a sealed letter. Secret Agent style, they told us not to open them until we were alone and outside of the building. A very interesting way of doing it, I’d say. As I headed out to the elevators with the other 2, I was wondering if they would open up their letters once we were out of sight of the AEON staff. I was definitely ready to open mine, and curious about how we all did. Muttonchops made a joke about doing it, but it seemed like The Chick was really apprehensive about it. We didn’t open them on the elevator, but I opened mine up in the lobby near the train entrance. It was really short, but I did get an interview for the next day at 2PM. Awesome.

Second day: I met up with Bryan for lunch (Giordanno’s Pizza), which was really awesome, then I headed back to the AEON building. I was wearing the same suit, a different colored shirt; I hope they didn’t care. This time, it was a personal interview (just me), and it ended up being only one of the AEON guys interviewing me (Rob). When he came to pick me up from the waiting area, we went back to a small room. There was a whiteboard and 2 copies of a page from an English book. I was given 10 minutes to prepare a 10 minute lesson about verbs. It’s really hard to think about how to explain basic English grammar when you’ve just been using it like it’s nothing for the past 20 or so years. Thank god the lesson was something basic like this, rather than something more complicated like interrogatives or gerunds. I figured out a basic lesson, wrote stuff on both sides of the whiteboard, and got ready mentally for what I was going to say. After time was apparently up, Rob comes back roleplaying as a Japanese college student. He actually did a pretty good job getting the mannerisms and stuff down on what a Japanese student would sound like, so I was pretty impressed.

Lesson went pretty well, but Rob really did get me pretty good on some “real life situations,” like when the student didn’t understand the meaning of “seriously” or “annoying.” I was very impressed with that; I think they must have had that prepared from the get-go. Anyway, after that I ended up being interviewed (just 1-on-1, I have no idea what happened to the other 2 recruiters from the previous day) for over an hour. By the end, of course, my throat was dry and I started coughing from talking for so damn long. Stuff during the interview was a lot like any regular interview: talking about why I applied, stuff about my work at IUSTV, and a lot about my previous experiences in Japan. He asked right off the bat why I got involved with Japanese in the first place, which I never really have a good answer for (how DID I get started on this?). Anyway, things went very well I think. I told him I’m interviewing with Nova next month, and I have an offer from Sears. I’ll know from AEON sometime before April 7 via phone (if I get an offer) or via postal mail (if I get a rejection).

One of the nice things about AEON is that if/when they give you an offer for a job, it comes along with the exact school that you would be placed at. No risk of going to Japan blind and getting stuck in Podunktown, Nippon. I talked during the second interview a bit about my placement preference, and of course I strongly pushed for Tokyo or Chiba. Rob was trying to push for “greater Kanto area” but I really don’t know how happy I would be in some smaller part of Kanagawa or something. We’ll see. Who knows if I even get an offer. Well, that’s enough for now; I’ve written way too much. If anyone out there is interviewing with AEON and finds this little mini-guide to my experiences helpful, I’m glad. Please comment or something so I know you’re reading. Wow this is way too long; sorry about that.

米国の焼肉天国

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I’m going to postpone writing anything about the AEON interview, Chicago pizza, traffic jams, or anything, because there is something much more important and relevant to discuss. Right now I am in pain. My stomach hurts, I feel like I can’t move, and there is a burn blister inside of my mouth. And I could not be any happier. You may recall (or have even been to) a nice little place in Japan called “Top Run Yakiniku Viking,” a sweet Korean BBQ all-you-can-eat restaurant that was like 1500 yen (around $15 bucks). The A-Team became regulars there, among the busloads of Chinese tourists. It truly was one of the hot spots to eat a ridiculous amount of food for a relatively cheap price. It was so good that in my farewell speech on the Spring/Summer IES Sayonara Party video, I made reference to it. Yes, it was that good, and you could eat a lot of meat.

Flash forward to modern day. That is, around 8PM this evening after Mitsuwa closed up here in Chicago (well, a suburb of it). Me and Bryan were shopping there at Mitsuwa, looking around, cursing the many prominent images of Pe Yonjun, making up stories to go along with the Boss Coffee cans, missing boots and skirts, and making fun of the cloudy liquor labeled “Jizake.” Afterwards, we decided to drive down the nearby Gulf Road because Bryan knew of some Japanese and Korean restaurants. About 70% of these Korean places actually ended up being either hair salons or acupuncturists, but we finally drove into one plaza and spotted a restaurant called Shin Jung. Boring sounding name, right? However, there was a large yet subtle sign on the window that immediately drew our attention, so much that it was able to actually get us to stop and enter the facilities. It was those golden words that we had dreamed of, but did not actually expect to see. Those simple words that can draw true carnivore to a screeching halt. That’s right… BBQ BUFFET. And only 19.95!?!?!?! Oh my god I didn’t know such treasures were available here in Chicago.

There was also more explanation inside, as illustrated here:
LEFT OVER NOT ALLOWED

So me and Bryan walk in, and it’s like heaven. The tables all have the fancy grill in the middle (an actual Korean one, not just the grate that most places in Japan had), and of course the giant hood above the tables to suck up the exhaust from the delicious cooking meat. And the actual buffet? Yes, like Top Run, it had a buffet of raw meat (and side dishes like potato salad). However, since we ARE in America, the slices of meat were actually a lot bigger. Yes, it was amazing.
Heaven on Earth

I could probably write for hours about the intricacies of Yakiniku, and of Shin Jung. However, for time’s sake (and because I’m in a hotel for the night with horrible wireless), I will not elaborate completely on the adventures. Awesome story, however, was when Bryan and I were up at the buffet getting more raw meat to grill, we were looking over at the sushi area (only Cali rolls, but they were really good), and I think the owner of the restaurant, this old Korean lady, thought we were confused. She came up and asked if we needed anything, and then if this was our first time here. It was, so we told her that, and she completely shifted into Professor Bulgogi and gave us a tutorial on how to cook and eat the perfect Yakiniku (Korean BBQ/Bulgogi, in English and Korean, respectively). Apparently we’ve been doing it wrong (or just the Japanese way) by cooking each piece individually on the grill. The way the owner lady showed us was much more similar to Derek’s “mountain of meat” technique. You throw a huge pile of meat onto the grill, and keep moving it around with the metal tongs. This gives you piles of meat (kind of like on top of gyuudon) rather than just individual slices. Then you take your cooked BBQ meat, and place it inside a piece of lettuce. Inside this lettuce you can also put your own mix and match variety of chili paste, green onions, grilled garlic, and sesame oil. The owner lady actually showed us how to do this at our table, and even cooked out meat for us, wrapped a lettuce piece full of meat for each of us, and made sure that we got the gist of it. We officially got the doctorate tutorial on Bulgogi, and it was awesome. And delicious. The owner lady also got one of the other workers to come over with tongs and a pair of scissors to slice up some calbi ribs (prime rib), which ended up being some of the best meat in the whole place.

<img src="/blog/shinjung3.jpg" alt="
Bryan + Yakiniku = a happy man” align=”right”>Comparing Shin Jung to Top Run, I really would have to say that Shin Jung takes the cake. It was only $20 (not including tip or beers, which were ridiculously expensive), had bigger pieces, of meat, better grills, and the service was a lot better. I mean, COME ON! The owner of the lady came over and cooked at our table for us! The only area that Top Run wins in I think is desserts, since we searched high and low at Shin Jung and found no ice cream or waffle maker. Oh god I love waffles.

Brian and I each had 2 huge plates of food, not even including the ridiculous amounts of lettuce and assorted side dishes we also ate. I think this might prove a theorem: whenever 2 or more A-Team members get together, greatness will occur. Everyone, next time you’re in Chicago, go to Shin Jung and experience this for yourself. You will not be disappointed, unless you don’t eat meat, in which was what is wrong with you? This was awesome. I’ll bet it could convert some vegetarians even.

I’m going to check out Mitsuwa in the morning and head back to Indiana in the afternoon. Yay for another boring ride through Indiana countryside. I’ll write more tomorrow or in a few days about what else I did in Chicago. The AEON interview went well; I should find out within 3 weeks. I think I did really well, but of course I don’t like to count my chickens before they hatch and terrorize the village.

鹿語

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The drive from Bloomington to Chicago must be one of the most boring and least-scenic of roadways I have ever seen. Driving up to Indy is pretty much the same as usual, but once you pass Indy, there is absolutely nothing. NOTHING. Not really even anything interesting on the sides of the roads. No major towns until you get up to Gary/Chicago area. I passed Lafayette and Purdue I think, but saw nothing of note from the highway except for some salt mines. But, about 5 hours later (including a pitstop in Morocco), I made it to Chicago. I’m staying in a pretty nice hotel downtown, preparing for my interview with AEON tomorrow. AEON, for those wondering, is an English school in Japan. Sounds fancy; I think I have a decent chance at getting in. However, Bryan Reynolds also applied last year and didn’t get in, which leaves me worried. Maybe the A-Team is too super qualified for this kind of job. I’m considering playing down my experience, which is really tough since half of my resume is Japan or Japanese-related stuff. We’ll see. Also sometime between now and the interview tomorrow at 1PM, I have to make up a 15-minute lesson plan for the group interview. I guess I’ll just try to pull something out of the memories of my stint of teaching English at Takanawadai High School.

I’d never driven to Chicago before. I’ve been here quite a few times, but it was always either my parents driving, flying, or taking a bus. Anyway, the drive wasn’t too bad (except for the excruciatingly boring aspects); I do like the drive to St. Louis better. Also, before you get into Chicago proper, you pass through this industrial zone where every building spits smoke of varying levels of pollution (including neon blue!). Maybe that was Gary? Yes, that part of the world looked pretty bad from what I saw. The legends are true!

Toll roads. I get to the first toll gate, and was preparing for the worst. 15 cents. Sweet; I can deal with that. Then the next one: 50 cents. A big increase, but still, not too bad. Then a little bit more down the road and I hit the last of my toll gates of the night. This one, however, is a whopping $2.50. What. The. Heck. Chicago.???! They lure you into thinking “oh wow, these toll roads ain’t so bad.” But once you’re on the road and there’s already no way out, they slam you at the end with a huge price increase. 15 cents should be the maximum or something. The roads weren’t even THAT much better than a standard highway. Bah.

Up to now, spring break has been just working on IUSTV stuff everyday at the office, usually until about 8 or 9 at night. I’m kind of glad that I got to come up to Chicago for a few days, just to get away from everything. Sure, tomorrow afternoon after my interview I’ll probably come back to the hotel to work on IUSTV stuff (e-mail, scheduling stuff, etc), but it’s still like a vacation for me. I want to check out the Field Museum, Chinatown, and Mitsuwa. All of which I think I’ll be able to pull off, since I’m staying here until Saturday afternoon. If anyone else is around Chicago, call me and we can hang out. Otherwise I’ll just be museum-ing it up myself. God I’m such a dork. But they have an exhibit on evolution!

Driving for 5 hours by yourself with nothing to do but listen to CDs gives you a lot of time to think to yourself. I can’t really remember if there was anything important (there certainly wasn’t anything deep), but I do remember the revelation about sleep. Recently, I’ve been getting more sleep than I ever have since I was very very young (probably before I entered elementary school), save for weekends, breaks, etc. Nowadays, with my demanding College Senior class schedule, I sleep pretty much 8 hours every day. I wake up feeling fine, never need to nap, don’t feel tired, and life, in summary, is good. This is coming off a long stretch (middle school to junior year of college) where I would instead get about 5 or 6 hours of sleep, I would wake up tired all the time, fall asleep in class, take naps, etc. Getting 8 hours sleep is definitely a good thing. I actually think I’ve written about this before on the blog (well, probably just bragging about my awesome schedule), but I just wanted to throw it out there again.

Now, I’m watching Champloo on Adult Swim in my hotel room, thinking about what I should make my lesson plan about, and I have already planned out my morning schedule for tomorrow. I’m going to wake up around 9AM to get everything organized, printed, and to make sure I show up at the interview place ON TIME (yeah, we all know I have a bad habit about being late for everything). Once that’s over, time to explore downtown Chicago. SPRING BREAK 2K6!!!! WOOOOOOO!

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