Monday, January 26, 2009

#949 Rudy From California, Timber Scavengers

Show 949 Monday 26 January
Watch today’s show at YouTube or BlipTV.

Hi, I’m Sarah, welcome to The Daily English Show.

Today’s guest is Rudy. Rudy grew up in California in the United States and his parents are originally from China. Rudy’s been teaching English in Japan for about the last three years and at the moment he’s spending the winter snowboarding in Niseko. Before he taught in Japan he also spent six months teaching in Egypt. I asked him how teaching in Egypt was.

Ah, it was pretty awesome. It was, it was just so … it was really exotic and totally different from back home.

Why did you choose Egypt?

I was really interested in the area and … in the Middle East … and I studied like Middle Eastern politics in uni, in college, and I don’t know, I was just really interested in the language too. I studied some Arabic in college.


Kia Ora in Stick News today 1500 tons of timer has fallen of a Russian ship in the English Channel. The timer has started washing up on beaches in English and authorities have warned people they are not welcome to help themselves.

Last week a Russian ship was travelling from Sweden to Egypt when rough seas caused some timber to fall overboard. The wooden planks have now started washing up on beaches in southeastern England. CNN reported some locals have taken some of the wood home. One local scavenger was quoted as saying: "I've got a leaking roof and I think it might be really good for that job.” But a spokesperson for the Maritime and Coastguard Agency, said: "It's not a case of finders, keepers. Anybody who does recover any timber must report this … or they are committing a criminal offense."

And that was Stick News for Monday the 26th of January.
Kia Ora.

conversations with sarah
#593 Do you speak Chinese?

Step 1: Repeat Sarah’s lines.
Step 2: Read Sarah’s lines and talk to Rudy.

Sarah Why did you decide to teach English?

Rudy I think it’s cause I just wanted to live overseas and experience different cultures and live in different countries and stuff.

Sarah Why did you choose Japan?

Rudy I pretty much came for the mountains cause I like, I like snowboarding in the winter a lot and in the summer I really like hiking and camping around and … I don’t know Japan was just, like, on my list, I guess.

Sarah Do you enjoy teaching?

Rudy Yeah, I do. Teaching’s pretty fun. It’s just, yeah, it’s, it’s not an office job where, you know, I’m stuck in a little cubicle, in a chair, in front of a, in front of a computer with a boss looking over my shoulder. When I’m teaching English, I can just … I’m my own boss in my classroom – it’s my classroom. And I … yeah, I can talk to interesting people.

Sarah What do you most enjoy about it?

Rudy Yeah, the students, I think. Cause there are just so many different personalities you meet.

Sarah Do you speak Japanese?

Rudy Ah, I speak a little bit of Japanese. It’s not that great. Just a little bit.

Sarah How did you learn Japanese?

Rudy Um a lot of … half of it was like self-study, just kind of … just looking at the textbook in my free time. And half of it was just going out and just practicing and talking amongst Japanese friends I meet.

Sarah Do many people in Japan think you’re Japanese?

Rudy Ah, yeah, like all the time.

Sarah Is that a good thing or a bad thing?

Rudy Sometime’s it’s a good thing cause I can just blend in, I guess. Um, and yeah, not feel like everyone’s looking at me funny or something. So everyday life can be pretty smooth. But at the same time, because I look like I can blend in, um, it can be hard because people, um, think I can speak Japanese fluently because I’m Japanese and whatnot, but, I can’t, so I can’t really blend in as perfectly as I hope.

Sarah What’s the reaction usually like when you start speaking?

Rudy It, it varies I think, it varies. Um, sometimes they get it right away. They know, oh OK, you’re obviously … you speak English fluently with an accent, you’re American or Canadian or something like that. Um, some people think that I’m Korean or Chinese or something like that, who can’t speak a lot of Japanese cause they just came from Korea or China. So, usually, usually the reaction’s, it’s neither positive or negative. It’s pretty neutral. Yeah, I don’t get any negative vibes or particularly … if anything, more positive vibes.

Sarah Why did your parents move to the States?

Rudy Actually initially they moved to Canada for, for college. They both went to the University of Toronto. And I think that’s where they met. So they went to the University of Toronto and then over the years they became Canadian citizens. And then, after my family moved around a bit, um, we ended up settling in California. And then … I’ve been in California since I was like five. And I pretty much grew up there and then my mum became a naturalized citizen. And then, so did I. So … therefore I’m now a dual Canadian-American citizen.

Sarah Do you speak Chinese?

Rudy Um, yeah, I speak a little bit of Cantonese. A little bit of, a little bit of Cantonese. It was, it was the deal where my parents speak to me in Cantonese as a kid and I answer back to them in English. So I can understand some Cantonese, like at home type Cantonese, but I can’t really speak much. I can if I try but sometime I just can’t find the words.

Sarah Do you have any advice for people who are studying English?

Rudy It’s mostly effort I think. Effort. If you really want to, if you really want to learn a language – not just English – um … just put a lot of effort into it.

blend in

phrasal verb - if sth blends in, it is similar to its surroundings or matches its surrondings
Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary


(informal) used when you are referring to sth, but are not being exact and do not mention its name
Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary

* "and whatnot" is similar to "and stuff"


today's news
today's STICK NEWS pictures


show start
artist: Boom Tschak
album: Indietronic CCBit.
track: More Chocolate, Please
from: Former Yugoslavia

cws start
artist: Wolfgang S.
album: Indietronic CCBit.
track: Dynamite
from: Belgrade, Serbia, Former Yugoslavia
artist site

qa start
artist: ioeo
album: triptracks
track: triptrack2
from: Saint Raphael, France
album at Jamendo
artist at Jamendo
artist site

qa bgm
artist: Kevin MacLeod
track: Dispersion Relation
artist site
YouTube channel

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