Schools out for Summer: Teaching English to Prostitutes in Brazil

So now that I am back on that sweet writing tit once more, I decided, what should I be writing about?

Jobs? Check

Failing at those jobs? Double-check.

Other random musings? Ta-dow. Put the tip in baby.

So now that I have decided on the ‘what’, let’s get down to some realness and tag team the ‘why’ and the ‘how’.

In truth, I fail at landing jobs much more than I succeed at scoring them – like a lot more.  It’s a chase; an awkward first date with a girl you just met. You never know if she will actually look like her Tinder profile, or turn out to be using photos circa 2005. Employers are the same.

Case in point, my latest foray into teaching English abroad had me hot in pursuit of teaching the commercial sex workers of Brazil the fine nuances of the English language, which of course would have been just amazeballs. An up-close look at what life is really like on the other side on a daily basis without the filter. Talk about getting to really know a culture intimately, or sub-culture anyway. Besides, the stories I would have acquired for my future in-laws would have been worth the long, monetarily thankless hours of tutelage.

Yeah so this one time in Brazil…

However, teaching English to prostitutes in Brazil was not to be. The reason: I fucked up.

Plain and simple.

World Cup fever brings everything in Brazil to a halt...

World Cup fever brings everything in Brazil to a halt…

I arrived in Brazil the end of May, and with World Cup only a few days ahead, and it’s jersey clad customers arriving in droves, the nightwalkers of Brazil were more interested in hammering away at work, than in mastering their English prose.  Apparently the school, meaning a room in a poorly fluorescent lit building with missing windows, ticking ceiling fan and reluctant students, had started in February and came to a screeching halt on Monday when the student numbers dwindled down from 30 to 4.  Showing up in my button down shirt and tie into the deep dark underbelly of Belo Horizonte, prepared to teach, I found myself stood up. With World Cup and its tourist hordes in town, the working ladies thought the opportunity cost of learning English instead of working it was too great a cost to bare.

Image of NYDaily News

Image courtesy of NYDaily News

Can’t say I blame them. Maybe you don’t need that much English under your belt when you are communicating primary through the international language of amor.

So in the end, my poor planning coupled with my even poorer Portuguese skills has led to another catastrophic loss chalked up in the failed job category.

I will not get my big shot to become a new age and white version of Jaime Escalante.

Edward James Olmos Stand and Deliver

I haven’t felt this rejected by women who I have tried to please since yesterday.

All is not lost however, I am still in Brazil, I still have my health, and there is still an exciting World Cup going down –with an also the equally exciting rioters burning tires in the streets in protest and stores boarding up their windows preemptively.

However, the biggest take away I have had in the past 2.5 years in my 80 jobs odyssey around the world is that:  when one door closes, another one opens.

This door just won’t be lit by a red light.

Turner barr
turnerbarr@gmail.com

Hi, my name is Turner. I travel the world, hustle to find interesting jobs, and write about what happens when you read too many self-help books.

1Comment
  • Gusti Junqueira
    Posted at 13:41h, 24 September

    It’s interesting to get to know my own city through your eyes Turner! I’m sorry for you have failed this interesting job! 😛 Good luck on your next! 😉