Here’s a list of some things I did wrong this week:
I gave a student the English name Aurora. Her Chinese name means “morning” and she wanted something more unusual than Dawn, so: Aurora. Which is a great name. She loved it. I’m like a wizard of naming. Throw away your baby name books, pregnant ladies. Bring those fetuses to me. I mean, Aurora? Come on. That’s smart.
Of course as Andy pointed out later, the only consonant in “Aurora” is “r”, which is impossible for the majority of my students to pronounce. Including, most likely, Aurora herself. So there goes that idea. Now I have a student named Alola.
Yesterday I gave a student the English name Felicia. Another great name. Sounds a lot like her Chinese name, and it has an auspicious meaning, which is really important to my students. Then last night she emailed me to say she’d like to change it because one of her classmates told her that “Felicia sounds like another word which means very bad thing, is it?”
Here’s what I guess happened:
Felicia: I’m so excited! I finally have an English name, given to me by my handsome and talented American teacher. From now on I will be known as Felicia!
Classmate: Wait, fellatio?
Classmate: Well your name sounds like a blowjob.
I told a student that I would join her student embroidery club. This was an unforced error on my part. I was hoping she’d forget, but other people have mentioned it since the initial conversation, so I might be stuck. Might be spending most of my free time doing needlepoint with Chinese high school girls.
This is not the way I thought my life would be.