1. Dave Sperling still owes me ten Euros he borrowed off me at the TESOL Spain conference
2. The EF school in Eastbourne had the alternative word for the “F” part of its sign that me and my friends graffitied on there for about a month before they got round to replacing it. We were only 13 at the time, I should point out
3. In my schools in Spain and Japan I was selected to teach footballers who were going to the UK to play because I was the only teacher who spoke Estuary English
4. I had to retake my DELTA written test because I was caught trying to look at a phonemic chart I had in my pencil case
5. I was in the same Alcoholics Anonymous group near Oxford Street in London as Andrew Wright and Michael Swan
6. I was thrown off my MA in TEFL by the disciplinary panel at King’s College London for telling Jennifer Jenkins she was a Marxist dyke and then starting a food fight in a lecture
7. I got into a bit of a scrap with Scott Thornbury at the end of conference drinks at IATEFL 2003. I was in a bad mood because they had cancelled my workshop on X in the Classroom at the last minute when they realised what X stood for, then I had a few too many… Scott’s a lot tougher than you’d think, but if you’ve noticed the scar behind his left ear then you know not to mess with me. No hard feelings from either side though.
Oh, wait a minute. I get it now, it’s supposed to be 7 true things you didn’t know about me. Someone didn’t use instruction checking questions with me now, did they? Oh well, here we go again:
1. When people asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up, when I was really young I used to say “A tramp”. Well, managed the next best thing…
2. In my first ever observed lesson when I took my RSA Cambridge CTEFLA I was visibly shaking (or so my students told me at the end of the course)
3. I get a tiny little mention in the latest edition of Harmer’s The Practice of English Language Teaching. And not for getting into scraps with famous TEFLers.
4. About halfway through my first teaching job I had actually bought my ticket home and was ready to do a runner, but decided to stick it out (a year of middle aged Turkish civil servant false beginners studying New Cambridge English Course 1 is enough to destroy anyone’s sense of judgement and decision making)
5. Despite having to teach Academic Writing, in my whole 3 years at uni I only once wrote anything over 700 words and even the shorter essays were rare. Here’s hoping no students are reading this!
6. A kid in my private primary school class in Thailand caught me swearing. Turns out he had spent 2 years in America and was virtually native level. Lucky it was only “Bloody hell”. I had no idea it was any different from the other talking to myself in kids’ class to keep myself sane until I heard “Ha ha. Bloody hell. Ha ha ha” coming from somewhere at the back of the class.
7. I once had to run out of a kindergarten class to “deal with my hangover” in the nearest toilet. When I came back a few minutes later the assistant teacher was still making the kids count from 1 to 10 over and over as I’d instructed, poor kids! Still, pretty impressive aim to get it all into a tiny kindergarten toilet, I reckon. Since then I’ve created the Alex Case’s Rule of TEFL Careers, which states that those kinds of things are acceptable when you are under 25 or in the first two years of your career, but after that get a little sadder year by year.
And now apparently I’m supposed to:
Link your original tagger(s), and list these rules on your blog
Share 7 facts about yourself in the post – some random, some weird
Tag seven people at the end of your post
Let them know they’ve been tagged
So, EFL Geek, Karenne from Kalinago English, Sandy McManus, Troy from , An Englishman in Osaka, Jason West of Languages Out There, Laurent of Saw You on the Flipside, and Scott Adams of the Dilbert Blog (hey, worth a try)So guys, you’ve been named. I leave the shaming up to you!