No Punk Please

For those of you with tats and/or peircings out there. Cover them up and take them out when you’re going for a teachign job or even once you’ve started. To the standard Taiwanese way of thinking these mean you’re trash basically. I’ve known a guy to get fired because he wore shorter sleeves than usual one day and his tat was discovered. It wasn’t showing it, but having it, that they objected to. I know a lot of employers wouldn’t hire someone with a tatoo or piercings (ears are OK, and maybe nose) no matter what the qualifications.


I don’t think this sort of ‘discrimination’ takes place exclusively in Taiwan.

My first job interview in Taiwan, the one for which IACC told me I was pre-approved, was quite a giggle.

I popped into the bathroom on arrival, followed by the agent, followed by this scruffy little fellow who started lambasting him roundly. He turned out to be the principal, and apparently was rather upset because he had stipulated that he wanted a female teacher.

Being chromosomatically challenged (actually gifted, in that I have an X and a Y) was only the beginning of my problems. Being a long hair was even worse. Apparently this made me a ‘rock star’, a danger, and someone to be taken away again immediately.

As I had supplied my wonderful agent a photo before accepting the position I was more than a little miffed at this development. Since then I have been cheered up by receiving this from a former colleague in China:

[quote]What does An English Teacher Look Like?

The Western English Teacher, Chinese varietal (Laowai anglopedantus sinensis)

A large, ungainly, and often troublesome bipedal beast which has migrated to China from its original European, N. American, and Australasian habitats. Easily distinguished from local species by its frequently pale, coarse, large-pored hide (although there are other significant patterns as well), outsized beak, odd musky scent, and
loud, braying, complaining call. Well-known for its combative behavior, powerful sexual urges, unkempt habits, lunatic diet, and outrageous requests. These distinguishing characteristics are an endless source of amusement and exasperation to all native species.

Most specimens are commonly rather tall (over 1.7 meters!) and in general are much larger than many native species. Less mature examples are often rather thin but there is a strong tendency to fill out considerably with aging. Hair is not confined to logical patches but is found in copious quantities all over their bodies. This is especially true
of males (except perhaps on the top of the head) but is difficult to determine since the females have adopted tool use in this area as a form of protective camouflage. There is usually a pronounced crown of hair in a variety of outlandish colors, ranging from yellow to grey. Eyes are often conspicuously large, and while eye colors can also
vary wildly the most commonly-seen shade is bright red.

Plumage most commonly consists of blue jeans or khakis, topped with t-shirts that gradually change into polo shirts in mature specimens. Both sexes may moult temporarily into baggy shorts over the summer. The feet are protected by sandals or sports shoes that, again, gradually evolve into penny loafers or low-heeled pumps with maturity. Unmated males often sport a mottling of the thorax and abdomen as a result of eating with chopsticks and then throwing
food-soiled articles directly into an underpowered washing machine and washing them with Chinese laundry detergent, which is a mixture of fly ash and plaster dust. Unlike native species, the plumage articles of L. anglopedantus do not seem to deliberately exclude colors that can be found elsewhere in nature. Frayed hems and other such signs of wear can denote migrants of longer standing. L. anglopedantus displays strong and apparently random accumulative behavior and often carries large bags or packs, from which they are prone at any moment to withdraw absurd and improbable articles.

True Laowai anglopedantus sightings in China are rather elusive except in certain large urban areas, and they should not be confused with Western Tourists (L. shuttlebusicus), Western Businessmen (L. mastercardius), or Foreign Technicians (L. geeksapoppin). These species are much more obnoxious even than L. anglopedantus, and can be easily distinguished by their considerably larger wallets.

True L. anglopedantus can be most easily spotted roosting in flocks in many disreputable bars throughout most of the evening and pre-dawn hours.

L. anglopedantus is an omnivore often displaying a marked fondness for grease and sugar. Studies of various herds indicates that what they eat here is frequently somehow vaguely unsatisfactory and often not what they really seek or want, and some grazing enjoyed by native species will cause L. anglopedantus to panic, stampede, or show signs of gastric distress. (These patterns are even more marked in the other Laowai species.) Male specimens in particular frequently display difficulties in finding adequate forage, and either engage in barter behavior for food or adopt a parasitic symbiosis with females of their own or other species.

Male specimens frequently display overt, aggressive, often inebriated mating behavior toward (at least) the younger females of all other species, foreign and domestic. Female specimens, on the other hand, often display less overt mating behavior unless they get really 'faced in a bar one night, and somewhat tend to nest briefly with the Continental European varietals of L. mastercardius or L. geeksapoppin, who are often richer and perhaps erroneously reputed to be “talented”. Female specimens who deviate from this standard are highly prized by nature lovers, sportsmen, and collectors.

Despite various social, biological, and technological controls, including the attempted elimination of major local breeding grounds, Laowai anglopedantus populations are on a sharp increase in China. However, many scientists believe that eventually their suitable habitat range here will decline considerably, and that the flocks will then largely migrate to other countries in search of richer feeding grounds. [/quote]