Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Speaking of hostess clubs

A couple times a month I teach an English conversation class on Saturday at the local community center to a small group of mostly elderly students. They're all really nice, aside from being much more motivated and easier to teach than the high school kids I deal with generally.

Since I live a bit away, they take turns each time picking me up to bring me to the center. Last class one of the women from the class came to pick me up and as we drove we chatted a bit. It was a little hard going because though she is basically the worst student in the class, she doesn't want me to speak Japanese. Basically, all the students seem to take any time outside of class with me as a free English lesson, so they're always trying to wring every use out of me possible.

We're talking a bit about my plans for the weekend as we pull into the parking lot. Just as I move to take off my seatbelt though, she taps me on the shoulder and a card suddenly materializes into her hand. I look down and find myself holding a business card from "Pleasure Square" for a certain Rena.

"What's this?" I ask
Her: "A card."
Me: "Who's Rena?"
Her: "Ah...my daughter."
Me: "Wait, wait, your daughter is a hostess!?"
Her: "No, she's not. It's a part-time job."
Me: "Yeah, so she's a hostess part-time."
Her: (Sighs)
Me: "Why are you giving this to me?"
Her: "Well...you should go."
Me: "Umm...sorry, but hostess bars are too expensive for me."
Her: "Yes, weekends are expensive but if you go on Monday it is only 3000 yen."
Me: "I don't know..."
Her: "Go. I told her about you. You'd like her."

And then I got out and taught the class. What was so amusing to me was how she was both embarrassed at her daughter's job but simultaneously trying to drum up more business for her. Unfortunately, aside from the fact that I would not pay anyone for a conversation, looking at this woman, to be bitterly honest, I would especially not pay to talk to her daughter.

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