Friday, December 8

Fuk U Ok A: Japanese Learning Proficency Test


Saturday morning… hung-over.

So I’ve decided that I’m not taking the test. I don’t feel it will be a positive experience that I will take anything from except confirmation of what I already know to be true and that is that I’m not very good at Japanese. I’ve not been motivated to rise to the challenge of the JLPT and this is odd as I came over here for the challenges, but this one challenge I feel won’t benefit me at this moment in time.

My lack of Japanese language skill is a huge problem, bigger than I would have previously admitted. It was recently brought to my attention that I express no gratitude to the people who help me at taiko practice, it wasn’t put in that nice a way but the point was the same. When I was accused my rebuttal was that I didn’t even know the word for gratitude in the language, I had simply assumed that my diligence and commitment would convey gratitude enough.
So this is one motivation to learn more Japanese, but my main motivation is that I really need to socialise with people who aren’t JETs.

The ability of some people to make a mountain out of a molehill, to harbour ill will or bad feelings and lose sense of perspective... is like a circus act of negativity

I try, and fail abysmally, to not be critical of people, to accept them on face value and be aware that everyone is flawed. Other JETs however are very intolerant to flawed personalities, which would be fine in its self if this simply led to them giving each other a wide berth. However, it too often leads to one JET being very vocal about their grievance about another JET in some cases so much so it seems that a slur campaign is being run against them.

The ability of some people to make a mountain out of a molehill (しんしょうぼうだい)、to harbour ill will or bad feelings and lose sense of perspective all at the same time is like a circus act of negativity, imagine someone juggling whilst riding a unicycle over a tightrope, stressful right?

But as for the test? I’m in the big city and I should be having fun.

Saturday afternoon, dinner with Evania.

Salad

Evania points out that quitting is just like failing. I think to myself that quitting is a lot easier than failing. She talks to me about not taking the test and says a few things to encourage me and I decide to take the test. At this moment its resolute in my mind, I’m taking the test! Which means there will be no wild parties tonight for me, early to bed… alone.

Saturday night, far too sober.

I hate being spoken down to! Someone, he will remain nameless for the moment seems to think it appropriate to speak to me like I’m his fucking hired hand. The cheek of the fucking goon! This encounter only makes me want to learn Japanese more so I can shake these absolute losers.

I remain furious for the rest of the evening, so much so I cannot sleep. I attempt to watch a movie at Evania’s and just as it gets interesting, I’m out like a light.

Sunday morning, alarm ringing, I’ve not had enough sleep.

Test morning! Need to be at the centre by such and such a time, need to get out of here now! Nothing goes smoothly, can’t repack my bag, can’t get the shower to run with hot water, can’t figure out how to lock the front door of Evania’s place! I get to the station, get on a train, get to Tenjin, get on the street, look for the bus centre… not a clue, ask for directions, directions given in Japanese, not a clue. Finally find the place! The bus station is on the third floor of a building, weird. Buy a ticket, look at the time, test begins in 10 minutes, trip on the bus lasts 30 minutes, I’ve missed the test, but I’m not bothered.

missed the test on a heavy comedown with no regrets

It occurs to me later that if I had stuck to my original plan I could have gone and partied with Evania and her friends and I would have missed the test on a heavy comedown with no regrets, now I regret spending Saturday night half watching TV.

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