おつかれ

As most of you know I'm leaving JET this year. So I often think about what I'll be doing when not in Japan. Take today for example. I arrived at work. Spent an hour in front of a computer, read the newspaper, went and had lunch for 2 hours and sauntered back into school. During this time I/we earned about 6000yen. Everyone else at my school was working. Where else would this happen but on JET!

I got back to school and was wandering around the classrooms and ran into my supervisor.

S: " Ahh Richard, we were wondering where you were, everyone was working and you were making the trouble. Now you are walking around the classrooms looking for things to steal"
R: " Yes thats what Im doing...dont tell anyone!"
S: " I heard that Japan is very rich country so you can take only one pen from student and return to your country and buy a whole house, because NZ is so poor."
R: "Quite".

So anyway, back to marking. I was reading through about 100 essays and came across one girl who wrote " I want to be rich and buy many bland goods" enjoying her spelling of 'brand' goods I had a little laugh and then thought "oooh typical Japanese girl" then it kind of hit me that that was a rather unfair thing to say considering she was the only one of many who wrote such a thing. People so often make such sweeping generalisations about others with very few facts to back it up. It's known as "cognitive misery", ie we use stereotypes so that our brain doesn't have to use much energy thinking about the situation. Perhaps when you aren't required to think that much we do it more often.