There are some parts (okay, all parts) of my past life that I just prefer not to talk about. I keep mum about it, but it has crept up on me unexpectedly a few times since I’ve moved back to Korea. I prefer to think of it as “I’ve moved on with my life, just leave me alone” but I know for a fact that there are people out there who think I’m a cynical asshole who has completely shunned that part out of my current life (not entirely false haha). While I have referred to that part of my life as one of the more negative ones, I have to admit that I met a few great people out of it. I consider them great people and I respect them a lot. Heck, I even keep in touch with them from time to time. Now, THAT’S rare.
April 2012 marks the 5th year since I’ve graduated from high school and ended my involvement in Key Club. During the 1st year, I made a really big effort to distance myself from everything because I was so frickin’ tired of it. However, as time went by, it was more natural to just ignore the shit out of everything around me. I got ran into random people here & there and I had a few awkward encounters, but other than that, it was peaceful. Every year around April, I relive my memories of Key Club when I get the e-mail from Patrick asking me to write a congratulations card to the outgoing and incoming Governor. I struggle with what to say because I’m sure “WHAT THE FUCK WERE YOU THINKING OF?” is not an appropriate thing to say to an inspired high school student. So I scribble the basic “Enjoy this year because it will go by fast”, “Take as many pictures as you can”, and “Don’t forget that service comes first.” Whatever, they’re way too young to know who I am anyways. To them, I’m just another name on the long list of governors. They’ll gush over the card at first & it’ll end up in the trash eventually.
I owe a lot of how I am today to Key Club. Because of all the work I did back then, I know for a fact, that I am good at what I do. That’s why I have a “FUCK YOU, PAY ME” attitude nowadays. But the difference between me & most foreign ESL teachers is that I’m fucking worth it. I will work to the bone for my money and go above & beyond. While my company did try to get me for a cheaper price, they know they’re still getting a bargain for what they’re paying me now. I never got paid in Key Club and I never expected to get anything out of it. I still did all the work & of course, I still cleaned up everyone’s messes. Nowadays, all that shit comes with a price. I still clean up messes. I still hold meetings with ridiculously adorable clip art. I still send out detailed reminders on a weekly basis. But I get paid to do it & I do it well. Key Club has taught me that if you’re willing to work hard for free, then you are definitely worth all the money you are making (& perhaps more).
Shout-outs to the 5 or so people from Key Club I still keep in touch with. You’re all respectable people & I appreciate you putting up with me back then & I appreciate your sarcasm when we do get a chance to hang out nowadays. And to all the youngsters still in Key Club – more power to you! Work hard, don’t be lazy, & one day, you’ll flee the country like me & have your own 8th floor studio apartment in Korea’s 5th largest city.