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August 28, 2016

November 15, 2011

Where Can I find a Chinese Speaking Notary?

Where can I find a Chinese speaking notary public?

At 123notary.com, we receive all types of inquiries from many types of people all the time.  Where can I find Roger Smith, he is a notary in Louisiana?  He notarized a document for me a year ago, and now I can’t find him.  I refer the inquirer to the Louisiana notary division, since they have the addresses of all currently commissioned notaries in the state.  I also get a few people asking me where they can find a notary in India, or Thailand. I refer them to the embassy, or ask them to find an attorney in the country in question.  I give sensible advice, and steer people the right direction, but honestly, I don’t have a lot of information myself that is good for answering most of the questions I get.  The harder requests are requests that I would LIKE to be able to fulfill, but sometimes it’s hard. 
 
Where can I find a Chinese speaking notary?
123notary.com has many bilingual notaries. You can use the LANGUAGE FILTER on the top right of the search results page after you do a search by zip code. Many of our bilingual notaries are Chinese Speaking notaries, however, they are all spread out, and there are dialects too.  Someone who knows Min-Nan-Yu only might not be fluent in Hakka for example.  These are Southern dialects from Guang-Dong and Southern Fu-Jian by the way.  The more common dialects are Mandarin, Cantonese, and Taiwanese in American metros.  You might find many Cantonese speaking notaries in any big city, but we have relatively few advertising on our site.  You can do a search by zip code and then use the language filter on the upper right side of the page.  Try inputting the term Cantonese, and then try Chinese as a second search. See what happens.  I cannot guarantee results because people join our directory daily, and change their language information from time to time, and drop out from time to time as well. 
 
If you can’t find a Chinese speaking notary on 123notary…. then…
The document signer needs to speak the same language as the notary in California and many other states. As a practice, even if your state doesn’t require it, the signer should be able to communicate directly with the notary.  You could try the Chinese yellow pages, or ask around in your metro’s Chinatown. There will be plenty of Chinese speaking notaries, but they might not advertise much as their business might come from word of mouth or (peng-you tui-jian gao-su peng-you) as the case might be.
 
It is common for Chinese people who function mainly in Chinese to pick service providers who also speak their language.  However, this might not be a good idea.  If your English is “Good enough”, you might be better off with an English speaking notary who is really good at what they do, and who is familiar with commonly notarized affidavits and documents. Just my opinion. Choose the skill set before you choose the cultural affinity if you have a choice!

To find a Mandarin speaking notary, just look up Mandarin in the language filter on search results. To find a Taiwanese speaking notary, just look up Taiwanese in the language filter. To find a Cantonese speaking notary, just type the word Cantonese in the language filter in the upper right corner of the search result pages. Honestly, the word “Chinese” will give you much wider results than these dialect names, but in NYC or San Francisco, you might find the dialect of your choice!  “Zhu ni hao yun!”.

You might also like:

How do I get a foreign language document notarized?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=18788

Can you notarize a signature in Chinese or another alphabet?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=18784

Power of attorney signings

Can a notary witness a will or notarize one?

Notary procedure for Affidavit of Support Documents

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December 4, 2019

A notary tries to be a comedian at a comedy club

Filed under: Virtual Comedy Themes — admin @ 6:04 am

There was a Notary who thought he was funny. But, he ended up having a lot of trouble at the comedy club. Here is what happened:

NOTARY: Hi, I’m mingling.

GIRL: Oh, that’s nice. This is a good comedy club.

NOTARY: I know, that’s why I came.

GIRL: I love comedy, it’s funny!

NOTARY: (pause… laughs abruptly) It’s just funny how you say it. It’s so obvious, of course comedy is funny. But, just the way you said it is funny. That’s right. Comedy — is — funny!

GIRL: Well your set is coming up.

MANAGER: Listen Notary, did you come to do comedy, or are you just joking around?

NOTARY: No, I’m here to do my set.

MANAGER: Good because there is nothing I love more than consensual sets.

NOTARY: And I brought a helmet so it will be protected sets.

GIRL: I didn’t see that one coming! Ha ha.

(Notary gets on stage)

NOTARY: So, this is a great crowd. Yeah… So, are there any Notaries here?

HECKLER: I don’t think Notaries can afford the $6 for drinks on what they make. Especially if there are eDocuments involved.

NOTARY: Normally I don’t like hecklers but you kind of have a point. When they asked for my six dollars I asked them to bill me and do a few fax backs. The bartender just gave me a blank look.

HECKLER: A blank look is better than a blank check.

NOTARY: You’re telling me, but don’t get your signatures in a bunch. So, did you hear the one about the two signatures that got married? They got divorced a week later. The writing was on the wall. The divorce ended up in a huge tangle. (pause) I guess they were not doctor signatures. I hope they had a good Attorney because the paperwork must have been a nightmare.

HECKLER: They would have to put the signatures on the documents which would mean they would have to multiply.

NOTARY: Hey, are you trying to steal my show? Actually, your jokes are even better than mine — so this will work out well. You must have a good writer.

HECKLER: It’s the same dumb-ass who writes your lines numbskull.

NOTARY: Good point. Wait a second, that means the writer is calling himself a numbskull.

HECKLER: He means it facetiously I’m sure. Okay. There was an embosser who bossed around the employees. Who’s the em-boss now?

NOTARY: I think he only has power over the employees in an em-mergency.

HECKLER: Good one. You must be learning from me.

NOTARY: Good God, what a thought. Okay. Got one. What do Notary seals and squids have in common?

HECKLER: Ummm. They both have ink?

NOTARY: Besides the ink…

HECKLER: Besides the ink?

NOTARY: Just kidding… it’s the ink.

HECKLER: You got me on that one! What about octopuses who do signings?

NOTARY: Yeah, they can answer the phone, fill in their journal, stamp the document and kiss the borrower’s wife all simultaneously. It’s kind of like being one of those Hindu Gods with all of the hands.

GIRL: Yes, there is nothing like hands-on experience.

HECKLER: I think that would be tentacles-on experience. Hey, look at that guy with the purple circles on his neck. Does he have a really good girlfriend or was he attacked by an octopus… speaking of octopuses?

NOTARY: No, that is Chinese gua-sha suction cupping. People use it to reduce tension and clear up blood flow. There is nothing funny about that. Olympians use it too, at least they showed evidence of it recently.

GIRL: Are you sure that isn’t an AIDS symptom?

NOTARY: It looks like it, but the AIDS circle is normally on your back or forehead and is smaller and looks different. Plus the color goes away in a few days if it is cupping. I went to a signing with cup marks once. I told the boss I had marks and he said do the signing anyway. Then he fired me because the borrowers complained. What a hypocrite.

GIRL: Men. On Monday they say one thing and on Tuesday they say another.

HECKLER: Kind of like a woman’s love. They try to hook you into a marriage, but halfway into the engagement they change their mind.

GIRL: Think of all the legal fees you saved. Speaking of legal fees, hey Notary, do you know any Attorney jokes?

NOTARY: Why don’t sharks attack Attorney-Notaries?

HECKLER: Oh, I know that one. Professional courtesy.

GIRL: No, it is because the Attorney-Notaries are so busy doing signings in Georgia that they don’t have time to go swimming.

NOTARY: Another possibility…. Okay, now we have a two-drink minimum, so when the drink lady comes, give her a nice order and a good tip. Deal?

JOHN: Do they have drinks with squid ink in them so I can have an official Notary drink?

NOTARY: There is no such thing, but there is Peruvian Inka Cola — try that. We have it on tap.

GIRL: I tried the certified angus burger with an embossed flat bread bun. Very delicious. But, not as good as the wagyu burger I had at the Japanese place.

NOTARY: Okay crowd. Now, A Notary was to notarize a husband and wife…

HECKLER: Oh, I didn’t know you were into that.

NOTARY: But, the wife wasn’t there and had to sign on another day. What do you do with the acknowledgment?

GIRL: Something kinky I hope.

HECKLER: You ruined it. I thought you were going to have a threesome and dress the wife up as a French maid or something. I think you have to use one acknowledgment for the guy and another for the girl, but not fill out the girl… oh that sounds kinky.. until you see her when her husband is not around on another date. You have to put the date the husband signed on the husband’s acknowledgment and the date the wife signed on hers.

NOTARY: Yeah, we Notaries sure love filling things out.

GIRL: Do you fill people out too?

NOTARY: You have to pay extra for that!

HECKLER: Oh! Good come back. I’m impressed. You should try improv!

NOTARY: One thing I don’t like about the amateur nights is that each person only gets three minutes and you are not allowed to interact as that is considered heckling. Thank God we don’t have that inconvenience here.

HECKLER: Yeah, I’ll say. People think you pay me to be here and harass you.

GIRL: You’re actually a big help and not that rude considering. I wish I could say the same about my ex-husband.

NOTARY: There was a rumor that I was having an affair with Jennifer Lopez, and the rumor spread all around Twitter, but I only got three responses. 1. Right on. 2. Awesome and 3. You wish… The third comment was from my wife. Okay, this has been a great show. Thanks and remember — keep stamping.

MANAGER: Yes folks, if you liked the show, stamp your feet on the ground to show solidarity with oppressed Notaries who stamp and stamp all day – well they stamp documents, but you will just have to be happy stamping on the floor for now. Thanks and you have been a great crowd. Damn it… they just ran out of Inka Soda. Why does this always happen on my shift?

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Some comedians look for notaries
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19931

Notary stand up routine
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=20789

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November 13, 2019

How can I find a Cantonese speaking notary public?

Filed under: Public Interest — Tags: , — admin @ 5:45 am

Where can I find a Cantonese speaking notary public?

At 123notary.com, we receive all types of inquiries from many types of people all the time. Where can I find Roger Smith, he is a notary in Louisiana? He notarized a document for me a year ago, and now I can’t find him. I refer the inquirer to the Louisiana notary division, since they have the addresses of all currently commissioned notaries in the state. I also get a few people asking me where they can find a notary in India, or Thailand. I refer them to the embassy, or ask them to find an attorney in the country in question. I give sensible advice, and steer people the right direction, but honestly, I don’t have a lot of information myself that is good for answering most of the questions I get. The harder requests are requests that I would LIKE to be able to fulfill, but sometimes it’s hard.

Where can I find a Cantonese speaking notary?
123notary.com has many bilingual notaries. You can use the LANGUAGE FILTER on the top right of the search results page after you do a search by zip code. Many of our bilingual notaries are Cantonese Speaking notaries, however, they are all spread out. You might find many Cantonese speaking notaries in any big city, but we have relatively few advertising on our site. You can do a search by zip code and then use the language filter on the upper right side of the page. Try inputting the term Cantonese, and then try Chinese as a second search. See what happens. I cannot guarantee results because people join our directory daily, and change their language information from time to time, and drop out from time to time as well.

If you can’t find a Cantonese speaking notary on 123notary…. then…
The document signer needs to speak the same language as the notary in California and many other states. As a practice, even if your state doesn’t require it, the signer should be able to communicate directly with the notary. You could try the Chinese yellow pages, or ask around in your metro’s Chinatown. There will be plenty of Cantonese Chinese speaking notaries, but they might not advertise much as their business might come from word of mouth or 朋友推薦朋

It is common for Cantonese speaking people who function mainly in Cantonese 廣東話 to pick service providers who also speak their language. However, this might not be a good idea. If your English is “Good enough”, you might be better off with an English speaking notary who is really good at what they do, and who is familiar with commonly notarized affidavits and documents. Just my opinion. Choose the skill set before you choose the cultural affinity if you have a choice!

To find a Mandarin speaking notary, just look up Mandarin in the language filter on search results. To find a Taiwanese speaking notary, just look up Taiwanese in the language filter. To find a Cantonese speaking notary, just type the word Cantonese in the language filter in the upper right corner of the search result pages. Honestly, the word “Chinese” will give you much wider results than these dialect names, but in NYC or San Francisco, you might find the dialect of your choice! 祝你好運

You might also like:

How to find a bilingual notary public
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=2520

Notarizing your foreign language document
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=2768

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>

November 7, 2019

The best money I ever invested is in…

Filed under: Advertising — admin @ 8:39 pm

The best money I ever invested.

When I was a kid, I bought a $1000 lawnmower that could mow 3x as fast as a regular mower. It was 36 inches wide. I had to have two long planks to get it in my pick up. I made tons of cash with that machine. My marketing skills that I use for 123notary were developed as a child hustling my lawn mowing business.

College is the biggest rip off. Five years of my life and very little to show for it. The Chinese I learned is mostly from myself and very little learned in a classroom. But, socially it was very involving.

My business 123notary was a good investment. It got me a high paying and interesting career that kept me busy for two decades.

Notary advertising if done correctly can get you tons of money. You might have to spend $1000 to get $12000 of business, but that is not bad.

When I first started advertising on Google adwords it was 5 cents per click. That got my business going well and it was cheap. It went up over several years to over a dollar per click for a high spot. I had to get strategic when that happened.

Giving to charity helped me get favors from God and the angels. Never underestimate the power of tything which is God’s commandment to us as humans. You produce, you make money, you share, you prosper even more.

But, surprisingly the best investment I ever made was today. I got Israeli style hummos and shawerma with spices I’ve never tasted before. It was a little bit Indian and a little moroccan, sweet, and juicy. I have never had food that good and only $10 during happy hour. Then to top it off, I got brioche at Whole Foods – only $6 but the best bread I’ve ever had.

So, don’t count your chicken shawerma’s before they hatch or get cut from the rotisserie and spend effort and money buying effective advertising. Let us be your coach because we give free tips on what to do.

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October 18, 2019

Where can I find a Mandarin speaking Notary?

Filed under: Public Interest — Tags: — admin @ 11:30 pm

Where can I find a Mandarin speaking notary public?

At 123notary.com, we receive all types of inquiries from many types of people all the time. Where can I find Roger Smith, he is a notary in Louisiana? He notarized a document for me a year ago, and now I can’t find him. I refer the inquirer to the Louisiana notary division, since they have the addresses of all currently commissioned notaries in the state. I also get a few people asking me where they can find a notary in India, or Thailand. I refer them to the embassy, or ask them to find an attorney in the country in question. I give sensible advice, and steer people the right direction, but honestly, I don’t have a lot of information myself that is good for answering most of the questions I get. The harder requests are requests that I would LIKE to be able to fulfill, but sometimes it’s hard.

Where can I find a Mandarin speaking notary?
123notary.com has many bilingual notaries. You can use the LANGUAGE FILTER on the top right of the search results page after you do a search by zip code. Many of our bilingual notaries are Mandarin Chinese Speaking notaries, however, they are all spread out, and there are dialects too. Someone who knows Min-Nan-Yu only might not be fluent in Hakka for example. These are Southern dialects from Guang-Dong and Southern Fu-Jian by the way. The more common dialects are Mandarin, Cantonese, and Taiwanese in American metros. You might find many Cantonese speaking notaries in any big city, but we have relatively few advertising on our site. You can do a search by zip code and then use the language filter on the upper right side of the page. Try inputting the term Cantonese, and then try Chinese as a second search. See what happens. I cannot guarantee results because people join our directory daily, and change their language information from time to time, and drop out from time to time as well.

If you can’t find a Mandarin speaking notary on 123notary…. then…
The document signer needs to speak the same language as the notary in California and many other states. As a practice, even if your state doesn’t require it, the signer should be able to communicate directly with the notary. You could try the Chinese yellow pages, or ask around in your metro’s Chinatown. There will be plenty of Mandarin speaking notaries, but they might not advertise much as their business might come from word of mouth or (peng-you tui-jian gao-su peng-you) as the case might be.

It is common for Chinese people who function mainly in Mandarin Chinese to pick service providers who also speak their language. However, this might not be a good idea. If your English is “Good enough”, you might be better off with an English speaking notary who is really good at what they do, and who is familiar with commonly notarized affidavits and documents. Just my opinion. Choose the skill set before you choose the cultural affinity if you have a choice!

To find a Mandarin speaking notary, just look up Mandarin in the language filter on search results. To find a Taiwanese speaking notary, just look up Taiwanese in the language filter. To find a Cantonese speaking notary, just type the word Cantonese in the language filter in the upper right corner of the search result pages. Honestly, the word “Chinese” will give you much wider results than these dialect names, but in NYC or San Francisco, you might find the dialect of your choice! “Zhu ni hao yun!”.

You might also like:

Where can I find a Cantonese speaking notary?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=1640

How do I get a foreign language document notarized?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=18788

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>

August 20, 2019

A bar only for “cool” notaries

Filed under: Virtual Comedy Themes — admin @ 11:48 pm

I had a dream that I bought a bar and wanted to make it the coolest place only, and for Notaries primarily. So, what I did was to create this apparatus called a “coolometer”. It is a little like how they strap you to a laughometer at comedy places where they charge by the laugh. The coolometer measures how cool you are, so the bouncer can decide whether or not to let you in on a busy night.

In any case, the machine has a rating from one to ten to test how cool you are. On a regular night you need to score at least four so we know you are not a complete dweeb. But, on the weekends you need to score at least six. Day time we did not have too many restrictions just as long as you weren’t scaring people away.

So, the bar did well. Many Notaries came and swapped stories about backdating, who paid, who didn’t, and more. Some Notaries decided to become pick up artists and come up with pick up lines (which usually didn’t work.

Do you sign her often?
What’s your sign?

LINE: Do your parents know that you hang out in dangerous neighborhoods after dark?
RESPONSE: This neighborhood isn’t dangerous.
LINE: It is when I’m here baby!

In any case, everyone had a good time and the bouncer had the necessary tools to pick them. Thank God he didn’t decide to screen people based on Notary knowledge otherwise the bar would have been empty. But, then, I decided to visit my own bar. The bouncer strapped me to my coolometer and said that I only scored a three and couldn’t come in. I said, “But, I invented this machine — not fair… plus I am the owner. What gives?” Then he said, “Just kidding.” I was so riled after that I had to have a home made ginger beer spiked with rum. Good God. And remember — Don’t drink and sign!

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Bartender Notary – a reverse mortgage on the rocks
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=4080

An American Notary dates a Chinese Notary using an app
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=20809

Best virtual Notary comedy compilation up to 2018
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=17693

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August 14, 2019

Millennial Notaries and gender roles

Filed under: General Articles — admin @ 11:33 pm

It has come to my attention that many of the millennial Notaries are confused about gender roles.

We had a male Notary who did not want to lead at a signing. He claimed that leading might cause offense to the others because they might consider the signing to be part of the male patriarchy. However, the signers felt differently. They did not know what to do, and the Notary did not help. So, they called the signing company and the Notary got fired.

Another Notary did not want to talk to the wife at the signing for fear that he might come across as male chauvinist. During the whole signing, the husband and wife kept looking at each other giving each other weird looks. They did not know what to think.

A third Millennial Notary did a signing at Starbucks. The signer asked the lady next to him what time it was and proceeded to make small talk. The Notary said, “Not cool,” because many Millennials think it is not cool (and scary) to approach women. Kind of reminds you of the Gillette commercial for Millennials. But, such a situation happened to me at a bar, where the male millennial staff member got all afraid because I wanted to ask one of the Chinese girls if she preferred effeminate guys to masculine guys. In China, masculinity is out, and guys who act like girls are in. Good thing I speak English like a guy, but speak Chinese like a girl!

My question to millennials is:
If men stop approaching women (and many have due to getting shot down) then how will people date, get married or reproduce? I think that the millennial brain is too small to think that far in advance. Additionally, if a man is not masculine (in more than just “for show” ways) then how will he provide for and protect his family? 33% of millennials live with mommy and daddy. Not very macho if you ask me. Glad my family kicked me out of the house when I finished college otherwise I would have ended up an adult baby like them. Good God!

If gender roles are flexible, then just have your husband get pregnant for you half the time and have him breast feed the baby. After that, I’m sure his male genes will be equally suited to parenting a two, three and four year old child while the female bread winner goes out and makes money. Only 10% of wives make more than their husbands. Gender reversal is the standard way of thought for millennials, but biology dictates that the results of such an action would be far less than optimal or impossible. I guess the political pressure on people stops them from thinking coherently. But, I know how to think.

Newsflash — men and women are not the same. When men go out, they get approached by women roughly 10% of the time. It happens but is rare. When you go out on a date, the man normally pays. When you have a family, the women normally depends financially on the man, especially when she is pregnant or has an infant. So, it looks like men are doing 90% of the hunting people down and providing and women are doing the child rearing, even in these politically correct times. Correct me if I am wrong, that the brainwashing has changed its message, but biology is still consistent with our ancestors in Africa 200,000 years ago. Hmm, do you think my African ancestors had rhythm?

You might also like:

A Millennial self-identifies as being a notary public
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=22269

The ADD culture and marketing your notary listing
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=22309

X is now a gender as well as a generation
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=22177

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August 13, 2019

The iPhone crisis

Filed under: General Articles — admin @ 11:32 pm

As we all know, society has changed since the advent of the iPhone. For me, an iPhone is a tool, just as the internet is. I use it to make money, communicate, and browse. But, I do not let the internet run my personal life nor do I go around staring at my iPhone 24 hours a day.

Whenever I go out, and particularly to Asian areas, I notice that Chinese seem to be glued to their iPhones. It is common knowledge that Chinese have some of the least developed social skills of any cultural group. But, this problem is not facilitated by burying their noses in books studying or iPhones while ignoring the world around them. Culturally, Chinese hate talking to strangers as well which compounds the problem. Every time I see a Chinese girl with an iPhone, the only thought that pops into my screen… I mean head is, “here we go again.” But, whites also do the same thing.

Shutting other human beings out of your life is not socially constructive behavior. Additionally, children being born might rather be born to a poorer family where the mother is emotionally available to the children instead of being focused entirely on her iPhone.

For those of you who don’t know, I am studying Chinese again. I started in 1986, and spent a lot of time in 1989 and 1990 studying. But, now I am upping my vocabulary and trying to get more practice talking before I go to Shanghai. I have noticed that I used to think that Chinese girls were unfriendly, but when I talk to Chinese guys, some of them take offense. Why? Being human is how God created us. Some of the people I am talking to are not completely human. Sorry to say, but true. I guess the females are less hostile to me than the men… Hmmm. What a world we live in… no wonder I’m lonely. I’m tempted to say, but I still have Mrs. Meao … aka Sheba, but she passed away many years ago and only visits me in dreams, even when there is no chicken involved!

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Are Notaries becoming unsnapped?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=21244

A Notary orders pizza at a signing using an app
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July 26, 2019

My best teaching experience

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 1:56 am

For those of you who do not know, before I ran 123notary, I had a history. No, not that kind of a history. Oh? That’s not what you were thinking? Well, then what were you thinking? Okay, in any case, I majored in Chinese in college as I had always had a strong urge to learn languages. In High School, I studied classical music a lot because my parents had many connections with music teachers, music schools, etc., and insisted upon it. When I got out of school, I found that there were no jobs that would involve Chinese unless I moved to China or Los Angeles, so I moved to Los Angeles from Boston which was quite a cultural adjustment.

Everyone and everything I knew from back home was no longer there. Even cultural things I took for granted like sarcasm didn’t exist over here. There were no more big Irish guys named Sully who whistled loudly when they wanted somebody’s attention (or said HEY really loudly.) I was surrounded by a California culture where people didn’t care about much of anything. And then there was a pervading gang culture near where I was living with Mexican gangs, gang guys, gang girls, bandanas, tattoos, low-riders, and Chinese kids who knew nothing except this type of environment. Sometimes the gangs would give people lectures right outside my window on the driveway. I remember hearing, “You gotta lot to learn esse! This barrio forgives nothing vato!” Okay, I’m mixing reality with Cheech and Chong, but you get the point.

I tried to get a job doing import export, but with few available jobs and no experience my search was a failure. Seattle and Shanghai had more jobs for people with my skill set, but I had family & friend (only 1 friend) here and was terrified of being alone in some other city. So, I started doing landscape maintenance, something I had done as a child. I realized I only knew how to do easy things and had little or no skill at doing harder landscaping tasks which got me in a little trouble. After that I started tutoring English again. That was something I had done while I was in Taiwan a few years earlier.

Tutoring was rough because people would cancel at the last minute, and the adults were not serious about learning. But, the children were good and proved to be reliable clients since their parents forced education on them (just like my parents forced music lessons on me which helped my life a lot.) After a while, my aunt pressured me to get a teaching credential and be a sub. I worked teaching kids and ESL adult school, and in all different parts of the county. I would drive to Fontana, South Los Angeles, East LA, El Monte, and more. And then it happened. What happened?

I was asked to teach a 10 week summer night school class in downtown Los Angeles. I couldn’t believe they assigned the class to me. Why me? I didn’t ask to teach it. I had very little experience at that district and in general with classroom teaching. I had done tutoring and small classes. Was it because it was a summer class? Were the other teachers on break? Was it because someone dropped out at the last minute? Speculation, speculation, and guess work. So, this class was every night for two and a half months. I got to the class the first day. There were about fifty people. I was overwhelmed. I had never taught a class that size. The room was huge too. It took three weeks to learn everybody’s name. Most of the people were from Mexico, but there were Salvadorians (or as I call them: Salvadortecos or Salvadorenos), Guatemalans (Guatemaltecos), two Koreans (Koreanos is how Mexicans say it), a South Indian, a Russian, and a few others. But, when you teach ESL in Los Angeles, it is generally 90% Latino.

I had learned a little Spanish and was going to learn more at work. Grammar was an issue, and my vocabulary was tiny. I speak Chinese well, but Spanish has always been a challenge even though it’s seven times easier to learn Spanish as an English speaker than it is to learn Chinese. So little by little I learned more Spanish words from my students which I needed for teaching. Because, when you teach a particular verb tense or topic, you need to make sure the slower students are on the same page with you so you don’t lose them.

So, I got to know the class better and better, and got more comfortable teaching them. The subject matter was my favorite: Beginner ESL (English as a second language). As time went on I noticed that there were more and more people in the class. I was disturbed. I didn’t know how these people would fit, and where they would sit. But, I got used to that. Then, I noticed that the population in my class kept growing like a cancer, little by little. I guess word got around that I was a good teacher, or perhaps there were no other options because there is a teacher shortage during the summer. By the end of the class I counted 120 people in my class. They loved me, I had most of their names down, and half the class valued me so much that they were willing to stand for two hours. I have never had an experience like this in my life and I think I should look back with price and gratitude. Because my other gigs of which there were over 100 (which were generally subbing less than a handful of times) were very disappointing and the classes did not love me.

Looking back, I would say that having your own class with a flexible student base is the best. That way new people who love me can join the class and I can accumulate a following of people who like my style.

Close to the end of the class, my birthday came. The students collected money for a huge cake. I was concerned that they were going to spend too much because (1) I like to keep it simple and (2) these were very poor people. After class was over on that day, they unveiled the cake. We had drinks, cake, music, and good conversation. It was somewhat hard to socialize with people who hardly speak English, but we managed. And then it was picture time. Two of the students put cake frosting all over my face and then took a photo of me. The posted a copy of it on the classroom wall so that we would have a happy memory. The principal came in a few days later and congratulated me on having a great class. But, I didn’t do anything special. I was just doing what I always do — I had just stumbled upon really really good luck!

So, that concludes my little spiel about my test beaching experience which incidentally was one of the best experiences of my life. I hope that I have some more amazing life experiences in the future.

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