Life in the Trenches


Do you like teaching in Asia?

Definitely not, but the job is the reason they let me live here and pretend I’m a prince. Unfortunately the price you pay for this status and location is quite high. There’s a lot of downsides, chief among them is the fact that every week is a time loop where the boredom multiplies exponentially as the days grind on.

Because when you teach middle school you do the same lesson twenty-two times a week, and every class is like bombing a forty-five minute standup set. It’s like putting on a one-man show about grammar. It’s like making a sales pitch to corpses. Because there’s no real way to hold the attention of thirty-five kids; it’s the Age of the Smartphone and the bar for stimulus is unreasonably high. I roll in with videos and splashy GIFs and three motherfucking games per lesson. Educational lubricant. Zero lag, all fireworks. And they still text. A funny thing about kids is that they think teachers can’t see them on their phones. Like we’re not going to see you’ve got both your hands in your lap and that your face is lit up.

In summary: modern children are vapid cunts and I’m better than them by virtue of being born first.


Though I did fuck up a little while ago. I’ve taught over two thousand classes by now but there was one that I won’t forget. It was a Friday afternoon, sixth class of the day, and everything was going sideways. I’d confiscated three thousand dollars’ worth of iPhones and pulled out two kids’ earbuds. The students were seething and murmuring in little pockets like a mutiny was about to break out.

I stopped the lesson and had them write fifty sentences as punishment. And I saw this kid in the back with an earbud in. I then understood why parents beat their kids. For fuck’s sake, wait until after class to listen to K-POP. If we hadn’t been on the third floor I would have gone nuclear on him, made a scene and thrown all his shit out the window. I slithered up as he was writing and yanked it out of his ear. He fell on the ground. It wasn’t an earbud, it was a hearing aid.

Since then I’ve really throttled back on abusing disabled children. Though unfortunately there’s one Asian teenager out there who really hates white people now.


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Author: Fred Colton

Fred is just another guy online.

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