Saturday, December 20, 2008

Sushi Time!

Ok, just how bored are you? If it gets really bad, there is always "Sushi Time". You have to make sushi to order for the customers. Remember to pick up the empty plates and re-order ingredients when you are running low. Have fun!

Monday, December 15, 2008

From: Home

Roong has been working hard at making greeting card and such seasonal things from many of her photos. My mom was cool enough to send some samples for her to get an idea about Christmas from. She also sent some shots of the snow. I am the only one in this household that has ever seen it. I guess it is a pretty strange concept if you have never seen it before. I have had to explain a few things about it to them, such as, building a snowman is in no way a religious ritual. Palmy and Pukky were a bit doubtful when I told them that American children LOVE to shovel snow. Haaa! I told them about some of the 8-10' deep blizzards that Jen and I weathered in Lake Tahoe. I don't think they could really grasp the magnitude of such a thing.

My nieces (eat your hearts out boys). From L to R, that's Melyssa, Catherine, and Lauren. At least I think, I haven't seen them in a few years. Catherine was refusing to talk last time I saw her, I hope she got over that. Mel was in the middle of her 37th boyfriend trauma of the week, and Lauren was doing a bit of acting. I have another niece named Kelly, and a nephew named Tyler. I will try and get Mom to send me some recent pics of them.

This is a shot from the deck on my Mom's house during the last snow. There is an eerie calm and quiet about being out in the woods like that. Very peaceful.....and creepy.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

English Camp and Us

Hi all. We just had our "English Camp" at Penpattana a few weeks ago. I just got some of the photos back from one of the teachers that was acting as the photographer for the event. This was grades 1-3. They are a lot of fun, because they are up for just about anything.

This is the shot of the teachers starting a game they play with a totally unpronounceable name. The teachers start out with a small line of children behind them, and as the music plays, each of these little trains does sort of a duck dance. As they move around, the lines will run into each other. When this happens, the teachers do a rock, paper, scissors. The loser has to join the back end of the winners kid train. This goes on until there is only one huge line with everyone in it dancing around.

This pic is of one of the combatants getting ready for Muay Thai. That's a trditional Thai martial art that is pretty cool to watch. The kids are pretty harmless, but Muay Thai is pretty exciting when you are watching the real thing.

This is the game I played with them. Luckily I had about 5 girls there to help me keep them focused. The object was to first write their nickname on a balloon in English. Then, they tied the balloon to their ankle. Once the whistle blew, the object was to pop everyone else's balloon, and the last one with a balloon was the winner. The only problem we ran into, is that many of the 1st graders were terrified of the sound that the balloons made when they popped. Not sure why. The other problem we had, is that many of them are so small, that they couldn't pop the balloon. Some solved this by sitting on it and bouncing up and down like on one of those bouncy balls with the loop you hang on to. When this didn't work, we would gently grab their shoulders and push down to give them a little extra umph. Most had a fun time with it.

I am not sure which game this was.

This is Jan and I bestowing the medals to the winners. The medallions were made of chocolate covered with tin foil. I think most were eaten before they got too far.

Another shot of one of the groups. They do a lot of sing-a-long stuff. Seems to keep their attention and keeps them happy.

That's teacher Aww standing next to me. I think we were waiting to give the closing speeches or something. Aww is a hoot. She is great to work with, but has an impossible job that no one in their right mind would want. Being the middleman between the teachers and our boss would make anyone crazy.

And finally, is a the latest shot of 3/4 of us. That's Palmiez on the left, and Roong on the right. Palm is doing quite well in school so far. Pukky was still sulking at home over one thing or another. Her loss, we look damn good!

Thursday, December 04, 2008

New Grading System

I am trying to come up with a new grading system at school. Something that will leave a lasting impression of how serious a matter good grades are on the kids. Archery just seemed a logical step.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

The "IN" Crowd Cafe Project

Welcome to the "IN" Crowd Project. Please let me explain what this is all about. There is not much of a retirement plan here in Thailand for a teacher. Because of this, I decided it would be nice to own a little cafe to spend those final sunset days waiting to take the dirt nap. The problem is that cafes don't come cheap. Having already come up with a t-shirt and sign design for the cafe, and deciding that Pattaya was a beautiful place to have it. Thailand is a great place to retire, due to all the nice things to see and do, and also because the cost of living is very affordable. So now, I figure it's time to try and sell enough of the tees to get the cafe.

Here are a few shots of Pattaya and the beach. Pattaya is about 2 hours south of Bangkok. During the day, it's a place to for boating, fishing, swimming, or just hanging out at the beach..

At night, it turns into a crazy fun place. There are plenty of restaurants, bars, dance clubs, and pretty girls to keep you busy. This is a shot of the infamous "Walking Street". Walking Street is only about 100 yards from the beach. It's a wild place at night, but in the daytime, its just a quiet spot by the beach, where you can take a beer break from strolling about, or have lunch and chat.

And last but definitely not least, are two of Pattaya's main attractions. :)

So, here's the deal...If you buy one of the "IN Crowd" t-shirts, your name, hometown, and e-mail addy (if you want) will go on the wall of the cafe, so all the world will see that you helped put the walls there in the first place. And, of course, I will happily buy you a beer, if you ever happen to wander into the cafe wearing your "IN Crowd" shirt. So please help support the IN Crowd Cafe Project by buying on of my "IN" Crowd Cafe T-Shirts.

And don't forget to get your very own "IN" Crowd beer stein for when you stop in.

I have calculated that I need to sell about 62,500 of these to buy a bar in Pattaya, so start saving your pennies, and please remember to tell 62,499 other people about The "IN" Crowd Cafe Project.

*Total "IN Crowd" Tee sales as of 11/20/08 = 18

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

School stuff

I couldn't remember if I had put up a pic of the school after it had been added on to.
We are full up at about 2800 students.

This first shot is of the kids playing "chair ball". They have 2 teams of about 8 kids, on a field about half the size of a soccer field. The object is to pass the ball (you can't run with it) to your other team mates, and get it down the filed. Once there, you throw the ball, over the goalies head, and your team mate standing on the chair, tries to catch it in the basket. They have a load of fun with this.

Is my class thrilling, or what?

A few of the cheerleaders taking a break. They take their cheering seriously here. They will all have laryngitis tomorrow

This is the next team warming up in the bullpen.

Uncontrolled chaos!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Sunflower Time in Thailand

Yep, it's sunflower time again here in Thailand. They are just starting to bloom now. Once the big farm crops are going, there are seas of these pretty flowers everywhere. We are hoping that it doesn't rain anymore for a while, as these plants don't like to much water. Last year's crop was pretty disappointing, because they got rained out. These are just a few shots that Roong and I took last Saturday, to make cards and posters with, that you can see on RedBubble.

Monday, October 27, 2008

More Pattaya Pics and Poo's Baby

These are a few photos that I got from Noi and Tan from the Pattaya trip.....

Teacher Poo finally had her baby. I swear that she has been pregnant for 2 years. She had the baby while we were on vacation, so I don't know her name yet.

This is a shot of with Tan (l) and Noi (r) at the big Wat near Pattaya.

Group shot of a few of the teachers that went on the Pattaya trip.

Another group shot.

This is a shot from the cabaret show they went to on Monday night. Jan and I didn't go, because we didn't want to spend another 2 hours on that damn bus, so we went and raided the strip on "Walking Street". Tan and Noi wanted to come with us, but got the evil eye from Nang (Mrs. Boss), and chickened out. Maybe next time. They said the show was ok, but I think we had more fun.

Thursday, October 16, 2008


Roong opened the front door to go feed Bongo, and noticed we had a visitor. He was kind of hard to miss. Those tiles he's sitting on are 9" tiles, so you can get an idea of how large he is. Between the scorpions, the lizards, and the cobras, it''s like a damn zoo around here.

The night we raided Pattaya

Our boss took about 90 of the teachers on a short vacation to Pattaya. And, I do mean short. Pattaya is a costal resort town that is about 4 hours away from here. It's probably the naughty capital of Thailand. There is all kinds of trouble to get up too. I didn't get many photos, because most of the activity happens at night, and the shots didn't come out so good. Sorry about that.

At about 5 am, we all hopped on 2 big tour buses and headed out. Jan and I were in a small compartment with about 10 other teachers. These idiots started pounding down that cheap ass Thai whiskey immediately. Then, the started singing karaoke. There was a small tv and a sound system in the compartment. Thai music is hard enough to handle, but listening to these fools screech was too much. Because we stopped at a few places on the way, the 4 hour trip down there took 12 hours! Their plan was to arrive at 5pm, go to a caberet show at 7pm, and then leave again at 9am the next day. You gotta be kidding me! As I said, Pattaya is fun central here. There was no way Jan and I were going to spend 24 of 48 hours on a damn bus listening to them again. So, Jan and I stayed an extra day. We had a blast! There was so much to see and do there. There are restaurants from evey country, the beach, great live music and plenty of bars with pretty girls that can't wait to spend your money. I loved it.

Pattaya is a lot cleaner and more interesting than Bangkok. It's not quite as expensive either. The new dream is too retire there. Upon Roong hearing that, she just glared at me. Haaaa. She has been there several times. I will have to work on her for a looooong time to get her to agree to this I think. Roong got a new Pentax camera, so, the next time I go, I will take that, and try and get some decent photos. Night shots are hard with my little Nikon, and I didn't want to take that to the beach for fear of getting it wet, or sand in it, or have it stolen. These shots are of one of the Wats that we stopped at, the great band at "The Rolling Stone" Bar on "Walking Street", and Lamai the bartender there.

And the winner is......ME!


Yowzaaa! I won a contest! The groups on RedBubble have contests all the time, called "Challenges". We join lots of groups, so you can get your submitted artwork seen by lots of people. These groups will suggest a subject or topic, and the members make artwork accordingly. After a few days, everyone votes on which art they think works the best. One of the groups I belong to is called Japanfluence. The topic this time was "working and playing in Japan. I submitted this origami instruction T-shirt design as my entry, and I won. It's called "Origami Samurai", because it shows you how to fold a little origami samurai helmet. The prize is not only being the featured artist for the group for a while, but I also won an original painting by the artist who sponsors the group. Her name is Thickblackoutline. Be sure and give her page a look.

I was very surprized, because there were many terrific works submitted. I thought it would be a cute idea to put origami instructions on a T-shirt. I got great reviews from many friends. They suggested that I do bunch of different ones, and try selling them as a stand alone niche idea, so I will do that. The one below shows you how to make a squid. Please check out my other works at My RedBubble Page.


Saturday, September 13, 2008

Discipline? I'll show you discipline!

Classroom management? You're looking at it bubba! Haaaa! Next week, I will work on them calling me "Your highness" instead of "Teacher Don".

Just kidding. This is my M-2/5 class. They are my most skilled students. As a reward for their hard work, I try and give them as much free time as possible. The girls are practicing for a ceremony, for a Buddhist celebration next month. Sometimes they sing, and sometimes they dance, and it's always traditionl stuff. It's very interesting to watch them go through the motions of what they are practicing. They take it very seriously, but they still have fun doing it.

Monday, September 01, 2008

Drawing Tablets and New Underwear

Howdy all. it's been a wierd few weeks here. First, Roong had a small fender bender in the car( she wasn't hurt ). It took out a headlight and crinkled a fender. We figured we might as well get the rust taken out and have it painted, as long as it was going in, anyway. We got it back this afternoon. It looks ok I guess. The next, and worst thing was, I got nailed with a virus. It hit Roong's computer first, or maybe Pukky's, we aren't sure. Anyway, we got rid of it, but it popped up on mine about a week later. It ate all my Word and .pdf files. Everything is gone. All my lesson plans, the student books I wrote, everything. This was suckage of the highest caliber.
Ok, so what do you do after 2 years of work and research goes poof? Right! Cheeseburgers! Sunday, Roong and I went to Bangkok, for a little shopping, and anything on a dinner plate that didn't involve rice. Roong found a jacket and top that she liked, I ended up finding a few new movies, a drawing tablet, and new underwear. I wanted a Wacom tablet, but those are way too expensive. This one is an off brand, but the guy hooked it up to his computer, and it worked fine. It set up here on mine with no problems either.
My t-shirts are selling a bit better. I have gone from selling 1 a month to selling over 20. I hope that keeps going up. So, now, instead of a stupid little old ugly car, we have a stupid little old pretty car. Business is picking up a wee bit. And, I have yet another computer toy to piss me off. But, I wore my new underwear today, and that went well.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Just Stuff

I found a few more pics on my cell phone. Funny, I don't remember taking the ones in the classroom. I gotta keep a better eye on my M-1/3 class.
The kids are a hoot. I asked one to come up to the board and write a few sentences that she had made. This of course led to her calling her two best friends up with her, which led to a discussion over which ones to use. Not to mention the constant checking with the rest of their friends to make sure they are doing it right. They are so afraid to do anything by themselves. Sometimes its funny, but sometimes, I know this hinders their individual creative progress.

It seems I have a new student. Much to my chagrine, I didn't notice for a full 15 minutes of class time. The bear belongs to one of the girls, but I never did figure out which one. He was smuggled out at break time. They really shouldn't be laughing though, because the teddy bear will probably do better on it's exams than most of them will. Haaaa!

This Jan, and his wife Poo at the market. We usually sit there a few times a week, and watch Thailand go by. There is always something weird happening there. the market is the focal point of our little community. If you want the latest gossip or news, or just need a cold beer, head to the market.

And last but not least, is Chai. This guy is a hoot. He is like the "go to" guy at the market. He works there every day, and for everybody. He is either stocking, fixing, or chasing off pidgeons with his slingshot. He can do anything from repairing electrical wiring, to sewing canvas for the food carts. That thing you see him drinking is rather interesting. I don't know what's in it, or what it is called, but it's packed full roots and herbs and stuff. You pour water into it, wait a few minutes, and then drink up. You can refill the water 5 or 6 times before it loses its kick. The first 2 or 3 taste the best, and are enough get you pretty smashed. Ya just sit back and pass the jug around and around and around.......

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Palmy's B-day

Palmy turned 20 yesterday. She has a few days off between terms at her University, so she is home for a few days. To celebrate the fact that we are one year closer to marrying her silly ass off to some poor, I mean, this joyous occassion, we went out to eat. Bannok was pretty quiet for the first hour we were there. We didn't even have to listen to any karaoke. YAYYY! As the girls spend most of their time nibbling at food, when given a chance to do some serious chowing down, they went at it with a vengence. We were stuffed. The owner, Eat, made this special sweet plate for Palmy with candles and all. She is such a sweety. Palmy and Puk dissappeared for about a half hour, and wandered around the ponds and flower gardens taking pictures. That place is amazing. Nan has got waterfalls and little jungle sections intertwined with the building itself. Since there are no walls, it's hard to tell where one ends, and the other begins. It really is beautiful. These are a few of the shots that the girls took on their cellphones. They managed to take about 75 pics of themselves. That's Palmy in the gray, and Pukky in red.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

HTML Practice

I am just practicing with html for my RedBubble site. They have a lot of really creative artwork on there. Not just T-shirts, but great wall art and writing too. I just used this here for my stuff to see which sites it will work on, and which it won't.

Hello Bing - Bing by mobiiGeisha Origami by mobiiI tried it at home by mobii

I love hentai by mobii Beach Volleyball by mobii Tell'em Groucho sent ya by mobii

Listen Quicker! by mobii Origami Skunk by mobii Double Cheeseburger by mobii

Get Dzi Stoned by mobii 8 Ball by mobii Save the Chocolate by mobii

Good Teacher by mobii You Look Funny by mobii Feed Your Head by mobii

I taught your girlfriend ..... by mobii I Love a Parade by mobii The In Crowd by mobii

Cooler than ........ by mobii Is that a banana in your pocket? by mobii Chef Ramsey by mobii

Warning: This is Sparta! by mobii Google thy self by mobii Happy x 3 by mobii

Just Sit by mobii Music - Weapon of the Future by mobii Live LOUD by mobii

Take your best shot by mobii Always Write! by mobii I'm Somebody by mobii

If your in the mood for a bit of wall art for your home or office, then please give these a look.

Sakura by mobii Cherry Blossoms 1 by mobii

Go Go by mobii Thai Girl by mobii
Lion Dog by mobii The Dragon by mobii
Bing - Bing X 4 by mobii