Tuesday, 18 January 2011


I got stood up today.

I was supposed to be teaching my Japanese guy to help him prepare for some job interviews he'll be having soon. We had a lesson yesterday and were supposed to have one today at 5.30, then he changed it to 5 during yesterday's lesson.

I got to Starbucks just before 5, got a drink and waited. I listened to Adam and Joe interviewing Roger Moore. Sir Roger Moore. 5.05 and he wasn't there. 5.15 similarly. 5.20 I thought maybe he'd forgotten he'd changed the time to 5. So I sat tight and thought he might roll in some time around or after 5.30. Waited and hoped.

I don't like situations where I'm meant to be annoyed with people in real life. I love getting annoyed at things I have no power to change. But I hate confrontation and this was starting to turn into a real cause for it. He'd cancelled several lessons last minute recently and now he hadn't shown up. I had/have every right to be annoyed about it. But I'm always making excuses for other people in these situations. I give myself reasons why other people's shocking behaviour is forgivable. He didn't have my mobile number, for instance. He might have tried to email me.

I had his number, however. I couldn't manage an angry text message. The best I could manage was, "What happened?"


If SOMEBODY SET US UP THE BOMB then maybe that counts as mitigating circumstances.

As it transpired, and as I discovered when I finally left and got the bus home at 5.50, he had emailed me. But at 4.45, long after I'd already got a bus into town. He says some retired people from his company came round and he had to blah blah blah. I know the Japanese loyalty is meant to be to the company, but when you've got an appointment with someone fifteen minutes later you should have the decency to say, "I'm sorry, I can't lick corporate arse today, I have a prior engagement."

He's just sent an email while I've been typing here, promising that it will never happen again. I bloody well hope not.

Rage blackout.


Anji said...

I know how that feels. I once had a lesson at 7.30 in the morning on Boxing day (Boxing day doesn't exist as a holiday in France)at a language school I was working at. My student didn't turn up. I went home after waiting for half an hour and left her a message. She was very ill and had phoned the school at midnight leaving a mssage which I didn't get untill after I'd been back home for two hours.

You could try charging for the lesson, but it's best to mention that kind of thing at the beginning. Having said that, I couldn't ask for the money for a cancelled lesson..

Jimijam said...

One of the ladies who ran my CELTA course was a bit of a hardass and acted like any lesson cancelled later than two days in advance or so should be charged. It's a fair point, but when you're doing things informally it's not easy to confront people like that, since you have to deal with them in the future.

Anji said...

Yep, and if you do ask for the money they might not come back again...

Stuart said...

15 minutes before is taking the piss... Have you had lessons with him since?