Monday, October 09, 2006


On Wednesday I checked my stats for the first time in a while (I haven't been updating so often that I deserve visitors, and I got the idea that looking at a drop in visitor numbers might inspire me) and found a couple of hits coming to me from Guardian Abroad.

What was going on? I stared for a while, trying to figure it out. Then I got sensible and clicked the link.

And there it was! But... what was it, exactly? I clicked around a bit, puzzled. I saw the link at the bottom of the Your blogs page that said Add blog, but I didn't think I'd added my blog myself. Was I losing my mind? Had I been surfing the Internet half asleep and added my blog without remembering? I worried about this for a little while.

Then I noticed the time and went to bed.

For the next couple of days I was busy, but a couple of times paused to wonder what was going on. Was this going to be another coriander mystery, never solved?

A digression: No, I never did find that coriander, and yes, it still bothers me now and again, and sometimes I wonder if it went to the same place the lentils came from. The lentils were one of the great mysteries of the 1995 earthquake, although it is a mystery that will probably never get into the history books. What happened was that after the quake, when we investigated the kitchen, we discovered that a lot of things that were stored in high places (i.e. above floor level) had been hurled around. The floor was covered with broken glass and crockery, oil, vinegar, soy sauce, and orange lentils. This would not have been so odd - things tend to get chucked around in a big earthquake - except that we didn't recall ever having bought any orange lentils.

At that time we had a very healthy professional athlete living with us (and showing us up for the slugs we are), and we knew he tended to eat things that are good for you, like lentils. When he called from Australia, where he was when it happened (lucky man), I asked him about the lentils.

"Yeah, I have brown lentils sometimes," he said. "But I didn’t know there were any left."

"These are orange," I told him.

"I never eat orange lentils," he said.

Neither did we. We didn't even know they were available in the shops. We didn't know there had been any in our kitchen, and certainly not that many. WHERE HAD THEY COME FROM?

We never did find out, but perhaps the lentils and the coriander are both part of the same mystery. If there is another big earthquake (and I hope there isn't) maybe the coriander will turn up again.

Where was I? Oh, yes, the Guardian Abroad mystery.

This one I solved.

On Friday night I checked my blog email address. I don't check that very often. I keep forgetting. (Although I did get your email, Cheryl, and you're welcome!) And there was the answer: an email from someone at Guardian Abroad.

It was a very nice email, too. She said my blog had been recommended (thank you, Natalie!), and that she hoped I was happy with the description. If I wanted to change it, I could.

I emailed back and said I was delighted and flattered, which I am. I went back and looked again at the site, and noticed that on the page for 'classroom antics' (a category created especially for me, I suspect), blogs are listed in order of ranking, and I have the highest ranking blog. How wonderful! Mine is also the only blog, and has not been ranked, but never mind that. I intend to bask in the glory for as long as it lasts. For now I am at the top of the page.

She also suggested that I get people to go in and review me. This is an exciting and more than slightly worrying idea, but I must admit it would make things more interesting over at Guardian Abroad, particularly if you're honest. (But not too honest. "A bit uneven," is acceptable, since it is true, but "She's making it all up, I'm sure. She's not in the least bit credible," is not. It's the Japanese university system that is incredible, not me.) Maybe you could review some other blogs while you're there.

Also, if you have or know of any other 'classroom antics' blogs, please submit them. I'm feeling a little conspicuous with a whole category to myself. I would submit this one, which I still think it is the funniest and most frightening Japanese classroom blog EVER, but it has been discontinued since the writer left Japan. (Start by clicking on Year One: August. This year, I am participating in the JET (Japan English Teaching) Program. Come, join me as I eat noodles, discover the wonders of Japanese porn and generally laugh at people different from you and I! Ha ha ha!) I doubt that discontinued blogs count, which is a shame, but I'm looking on the bright side. I do not have to worry about being permanently relegated to second place.

Not yet, anyway.


Kay said...

Silly Badaunt--you forgot you bought orange lentils to match the orange sparrow bottoms!