Hey, kids! Welcome to our web site all about riding the gravy train in Japan. What's that you say? I can make money just by existing, by simply showing up and speaking English?! Yep, you sure can! Our site is dedicated to all you carbon blobs out there. Learn how to tie a tie and nod your head thoughtfully and you're in!
The kanji for 2010 was "sho"（暑）meaning hot. Looking back on the year, as far as this blog is concerned, the word of the year is probably "GEOS" owing to the closure of its schools in Australia and then its bankruptcy in Japan. On the other hand, if you worked for Nova when it collapsed in 2007, the fact that the trustees have started paying unpaid wages probably came as a pleasant surprise. For what it's worth, here's a recap of the issues covered on Let's Japan.
Just before NOVA began to implode, there was a wiki floating about focused solely on all things eikaiwa. Sadly, it went offline before NOVA collapsed and has been offline for at least a year.
The Eikaiwa Wiki is the product of long-time LJ reader Novawhiz, and I am happy to say that he has graciously allowed LetsJapan to host it.
Novawhiz has spent a fair amount of time in getting the wiki back up and running, but since it has been offline for a while, some of the content may be out of date or in need of expanding. This is where you, the reader, come in.
Let's Japan seeks to debunk the beast known as eikaiwa, or English conversation in Japan. Our experience at GEOS left us disillusioned with the job. We were hungry for an opportunity to live and work and Japan, so we jumped through all the hoops and said the things we thought our employers wanted to hear.
Working in Japan was nothing close to the image presented to us back home. The reality was that we were salesmen, doing our best to keep students happy enough so that they would gladly keep paying for the privilege of speaking to us a few times a week.
Let's Japan has been pretty dormant for a while with only a handful of articles posted in the past year or two. The forums have been the main source of activity. The reason is simple: I have moved on. I've been out of eikaiwa for 10 years now and I cannot honestly say I know much about the industry any more. I've purged my eikaiwa demons. It's time for someone else to carry the torch.
LJ isn't going away. The site has been given a faceift and I hope to write more about Japan also want to invite other LJ users to blog here as well.