Actually, I quite like my Japanese class.
Yes, I do. Contrary to my incessant complains about the work load and the never-ending daily quizzes, I enjoy my Japanese class. My teachers, Sato Sensei and Nazikian Sensei are phenomenal; my classmates (mostly undergrad little kids) are comical and entertaining; and the course content at times can be just downright funny (Has anyone else discovered the sections titled “How to Use a Japanese Bath” and “How to Use the Toilet” on page 69 in the yellow book?) What is a sleep-deprived art history graduate student to do but to fall in love with all of the above?
Honestly, one of the reasons I enjoy this class is the fact that I can be more relaxed during class. Unlike my other graduate courses, where I frequently hear the familiar lines such as “Amy, what do you think of the arguments made by Cahill and Fong?” or “Amy, can you tell us which of the two juxtaposed painting preceded the other and why?” or “Amy, [insert a very difficult art historical question]?” At the sound of my name, I know a tough question is about to spring onto me and I have about 3 seconds to rack my brains, recall some passages from the 750 pages that I read in the previous week, and come up with something remotely intelligent to say.
My loving Japanese teachers are much more forgiving when I blank out and brain-freeze – which happens frequently due to the fact that after the grueling graduate courses in the morning, my spent brain with no lunch usually doesn’t function very well at 1 pm. My equally sympathetic classmates are very helpful when we work on oral exercises. My lab TA has also shown tremendous patience and has been very kind.
So, I dedicate this blog, with all the previous and future postings – current posting written by a very tired and grumpy graduate student who just returned from her sister-in-law’s 3-day wedding celebration in Long Island and has so much work and reading to do that she will probably stay up very late tonight – to Sato Sensei, Nazikian Sensei, my lab TA (Tanaka Sensei? Please don’t be offended if I got your name wrong), and my classmates. Without you, I wouldn’t have lasted this long.