Teaching English in Japan was Like Pro Wrestling for Me

It’s been a long time since I’ve written or made a video. What an interesting but ultra-crazy 2016 it was for me. I think 2016 was crazy for everyone, quite frankly, but in terms of my life overseas it was insane at times.

I recall finally making my way out of Korea to hit the Land of the Rising Sun back in February. That was an exhilarating moment for me. There I was getting EXACTLY what I wanted. A “real” teaching gig at a new school. And in Japan, no less.

Oh, the experiences and judo videos that were to follow. It was becoming clearer to me why I made the life change that I had.

Once I hit the shores, it hit me. I was in JAPAN! It looked and felt so different than Korea. Japan also has a unique smell. Or maybe I’m just crazy. It seemed like whenever I was at judo or in an office building I would get a whiff of that Japan smell. It’s like, linen or something along those lines. I can’t explain it. The closest word I can arrive at is linen.

In any event, I was in linen land. I got settled in, got semi-squared away with documentation and apartment. Then the year started.

How things can change.

I remember when I was a kid, maybe mid teens, I was visiting family in Florida. In those days I, as most, watched my fill of pro-wrestling. It was the realness of it that always captivated me! Back in the day, there was a tag-team called the British Bulldogs. If you don’t know, Tampa, Florida is a hotbed for pro rasslers.

I remember boarding the airplane and as I passed first class, there before me was the Dynamite Kid. If he got on the top rope he was deadly! At one point during the flight we actually crossed paths in the aisle.

Now, at that time I was pretty much finished growing height-wise. I was maybe 6’2″ then (approximately 188 cm, I believe). As I approached the Dynamite Kid I was flabbergasted.

The Dynamite Kid was so short! I literally looked down at him. Like, clear shot of the top of his head type of view!

How could that be?! It’s not how he was portrayed on TV. Not how Mean Gene made him out to be. Not how I knew for certain that he was a gargantuan overlord. Nope. Short. Muscular, no doubt. Probably as wide as tall, in fact. I still got his autograph though. Ha!

Now it’s 2016 and I’m in Japan. The Intercontinental Champion of destinations. But…


…it was the Dynamite Kid for me in many ways. Not so much Japan as much as the “next level” of teaching. It wasn’t what I would’ve expected. It was…corporate. It was…competitive. To a fault. It was…what I thought I left behind in 2011.

I have much to comment on regarding my unique teaching experience at a Japanese private school that I plan on sharing in the near future. And I will. Just not here.

I’m still in Japan though. Still in Hiroshima. I’m busy. I’m doing things. I’m ramping up for blogging and vlogging again. But I’m not teaching. Not for now, at least. I’ve stumbled down a different path.

Is it related to teaching? Yes and no. It’s connected to the whole picture. It’s crazy and awesome at the same time. It’s also something I plan on sharing VERY soon. Again, just not here.

So here’s to deathlocks, giant leg drops, and the future. Life is just a series of ups and downs and how we navigate them.


  1. Sounds like your really excited about your new prospects. Happy New Year and happy new adventures in 2017.

  2. Looking forward to hearing the “rest of the story”. But not here. Seriously, can’t wait to hear what you’ve been up to. Have a great week!

  3. Glenn Laycock says:

    Well you have the skill and energy that is top notch. You also have the ability to hone in on what people value and relate that to what drives your happiness.

    Keep close to the Internet community who finds your journey, advice, and learning’s interesting and do seem to “have your back” in driving that success.

    • Thank you, Glenn. It’s just a series of experiences and some play out well, others not so much. In the end it comes down to how I use those experiences. I really appreciate the support and it’s great to know that people are supportive in all cases.

  4. There you are! Sounds as though you have had to put your ‘ninja’ skills to the test there in Japan so far. I look forward to your updates.

    Cheers from Seoul

  5. You are doing a great job of peaking my interest. I will be following to see what unfolds. I can’t thank you enough for encouraging me along my journey as well.

  6. Hi Tom! Wow, it’s been awhile since I’ve ( we have) heard from you and it’s great to hear a little bit from you! Can’t wait to hear about your adventures in Japan.

  7. Tom,
    You mentioned on youtube about starting a business. How has it been going? I kinda miss your youtube vids though it is understandable with your business going on. Take care.


    • Hi, Mike. Thanks for the message. A lot of things changed drastically since that video. I’ll be ramping up again with videos and writing very soon.

Share Your Thoughts


Loading Facebook Comments ...