Alex and Chickpea Do Korea

And the deskwarming begins ….

Today is officially my first day of deskwarming.

For those of you unaware of the great deskwarming debate in Korean public schools, let me elaborate: Deskwarming is coming to school for seemingly no other reason than to warm that desk of yours.

Students are on vacation. Teachers are on vacation. All of your lesson plans are finished and the principal has approved them. You’ve cleaned your office, your classroom, some other random room just because you’re bored.

You. Have. Nothing. (School-related). To. Do.

And yet, you are still required to be at school for the full 8-hour day. There is no lunch served. There may or may not be heat. There’s a good chance you will not see another soul for the entire day. And still, you are sitting at your desk. Warming it.

Some foreign English teachers get really upset about deskwarming. “It’s unfair!” they shout to friends at bars during December and January. “Why do the other teachers get two months and we sit here for no damn reason?” Just the thought of “missing out” on another month of vacation time enrages them more.

I admit, I would love the extra time. But I signed a contract and knew what I was getting into. If I didn’t like it, I should’ve been a Fulbright Grantee or something. Or went to Vietnam.

Deskwarming is not so bad. Why, I just spent 10 minutes of it on this blog post!

In honor of my first deskwarming day, here’s a link to one of the newest blogs to join my blogroll: The Waygook Effect, which is one of the better expat blogs out there. The blogger has a hilarious video — featuring Hitler — all about deskwarming. Check it out!

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