Thursday, March 12, 2009

Yellow Headway Fever: Protect Yourself from This Deadly Disease!

I received an e-mail the other day in praise of (well, mentioning) this blog posting of mine from the past on TeflTrade (R.I.P.), so I figured it was well worth another outing. And let's face it, why shouldn't I brazenly plagiarise my own stuff? OK, I know - only ten or 15% of it's really my own work, but let's not get too picky here, eh?!

If you're teaching EFL abroad and you work in a location where the Yellow Headway is common (Pre-intermediate level), you absolutely must protect yourself from this deadly disease. Read on if you want to avoid the killer sickness that is currently ravaging the TEFL industry world-wide.

You Get Sick

Scarlet, canary yellow and shimmering blue feathered birds flecked with iridescent green, chirp songs to greet the sunrise as you awake. But you don't really notice - your hangover usually starts that way. Then, Thor's silver hammer begins to bang-bang-bang away at your head in fury. Your eyes close from the sheer pain. The nausea increases as you struggle to get up. Your back feels so hefty, like a slab of concrete. Again you try getting up, and your muscles scream so loudly you move, or crawl, as if in slow motion. Your palm burns from the 102 plus degrees F radiating from your forehead as you brush your hair back, trying to stimulate yourself to alertness. A trip hammer thunders away inside your chest at 100 to 110 beats per minute.
Good morning. You have Yellow Headway Fever.

You Get Worse

A few days after the sudden onset of symptoms, you worsen. You become jaundiced, and watch as your skin yellows to the point you more resemble a Halloween caricature than a dying person. The destruction of your liver cells results in the accumulation of yellow bile pigments in your skin, and your heart slows to around 50 beats per minute. That rumbling in your stomach is your gastro-intestinal tract bleeding. You vomit the characteristic black blood of Yellow Headway Fever. Although things are starting to become much worse, you don't have much longer to suffer, though. Death usually occurs between the fourth and eighth day after the onset of the disease.

You Get Out

Yellow Headway Fever is an untreatable, textbook-borne disease which is endemic in language schools that utilise the much over-rated Headway series. In schools in Eastern Europe and Russia an alert caused by outbreaks of Yellow Headway Fever is currently raging. Every year, from November until mid-January, scores of TEFL deaths from Yellow Headway Fever are usually recorded.

Immunization is futile. The only possible solutions involve the teacher making a sustained retreat from the classroom, and finding a proper job - usually in his country of origin. As there is no specific medical treatment for Yellow Headway Fever, once it is contracted, care consists of treating the symptoms of the disease by preventing dehydration, reducing fever - and removing all copies of the dreaded Yellow Headway from the resources room.

Take care. Don't be a victim!

Original Source:

[First Published: Saturday, 10 November 2007]

A Few Comments from the Original Posting

'Al' left this comment on 10 Nov 07
Hey there, I think headway is a barrel of roses compared to the tripe I have to use at the moment, have you ever used the tefl phlegm that is cutting edge? shudders...............

'Sandy' left this comment on 11 Nov 07
Actually, I have used Cutting Hedges, and prefer it to Headache. But it's just not suitable for students in the ME region - too much about sex, drugs, abortion, etc etc. Headache, on the other hand, is so utterly bland it coiuld be used anywhere in the world - hence its popularity, I guess.

'A visitor' left this comment on 16 Nov 07
Given your public spiritedness, do you not think a warning about the perils of Business Arse might be in order? It can be VERY painful.

'A visitor' left this comment on 16 Nov 07
Aye, an' worr about 'All Anal Business Pairwork' an' 'Rohypnol Recipes For Tied Up Teachers' ? not to mention 'English Vocab: A 2 M'. An' fer the more pastoral care types: 'When You Weep, I Seep- A Coping Guide For Teachers of Attractive Students From Eastern Europe'. Word.

'Sandy' left this comment on 16 Nov 07
OK, MCW - give me the hard news on 'Business Arse' and I'll print it. I'll not be cowed into submission again - for a while, anyway. As for you, Shaunie, just keep on taking that medicinal mixture of scrumpy cider, red wine and black rum, and you'll soon get better. Or dead. I'm sure they'd give you a nice funeral in Finland...

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