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​transcripts

7. "The Bridge" and Abe's First Job 

(Transcript by Etsuko)

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​7. “The Bridge” and Abe’s first job

 

(intro)

 

-The thing is Ben, When you do a job for more than 2 weeks you slowly start to given more responsibility.

-you do

 

(music)

 

♬ imagination time ♬

-I am the light in the darkness, I stand at this bridge day and night, this river and this bridge separate “good and evil.” On one side, everything is happy. People are kind, generosity, brotherhood, happiness… and on the other side of the bridge “evil.” People are terrible fires burn day and night.

The only thing that stops the bad from mixing with the good is me, “Twinkle Star.”  I stand and I gaurd.

-Who’s that?

-Whoa, Friday..

-Who is that in the darkness?

-Why, it’s me! Scorpion.

-Scorpion! I knew it.

-Remember me?

-You’re coming from the evil side.

-Yes, the “evil east” where men die and women…  also often die.

-Why do you want to cross this bridge?  Go back to the evil side where you belong.

-Whoa Friday!  it’s OK..  Well, I need to go shopping, and you know, the best supermarket is on the good side.

-Of course it is.  Every thing is better on the good side, that’s why it’s the good side! 

-the best prices, the staff are really friendly and helpful.  On my side, the staff are evil… and they ignore you.  I say “Where’s the yogurt?” and they say “I don’t know!” 

-That sounds terrible…

-“I don’t like yogurt!”

-That sounds awful, Scorpion.

-So I’m coming to the good side to do my shopping.

-You are not going anywhere unless I let you across the bridge, and I have not made a decision yet.

-OK, firstly is this your job?  To guard this bridge? or is this a weird hobby…?

-Well, what’s your definition of job?

-Does anybody pay you to guard this bridge?

-Well, Heroes don't get paid..

-yeah but heroes help people, they don’t stop them going shopping.

-I’m helping the people in the good side by stopping people from the bad side coming.

-But I’m not bad I just live…

-You look really bad.

-I live in the bad area it doesn’t mean I’m bad

-Why is your tail so sharp?

-Because it can kill a man!

-Exactly!

-with one whip!!

-Exactly!!

-Yeah, but I don’t use it.

-Why should I trust you?

-Do you know the expression “Don't judge a book by its cover”?

-“Don't judge a book by its cover” Yes, that means, Don’t just look at someone and think you know everything about them.

-Yeah, maybe the person looks scary but inside is a soft gentle kind heart.

-That’s one thing that’s very unique about you Scorpion…   I have never seen a scorpion riding a horse before.

-It’s not easy. 

-He is a beautiful horse.

-Thank you.

-May I touch him? May I pet him?

-Where?

-Well, just right here on the nose

-on the nose is fine.

-good boy

-Let’s keep it above the waist.

-Oh you like that Friday?

-Oooh Yes, It’s been many years since I was with a horse…  How about this?  I’ll let you go to the supermarket on the good side, if you give me your horse, Friday.

-I have to talk to Friday about this.  Can you give us one moment?  Friday come here…. (Whispering) So, Friday has reminded me that the reason I’m riding him is to get to the supermarket.  It’s pretty far from this bridge.  I need my horse to go to the supermarket.

-It’s the good side so there is wonderful public transportation. 

-OK…

-Yes, so just walk across the bridge, get on a bus, and you’ll be at the supermarket very quickly…  And I’ll have the horse..  Friday! Mmmm..yes..

-Woah woah woah, hands down.

-he is so smooth!

-Can you hold your hands up where I can see them?

-Just let me touch a little more. Yes, good boy.

-I don’t like buses, not a bus guy. 

-Too bad

-too bad?

-The only way I’m letting you across this bridge is if I get your horse for one night!

-one night now??

-I can’t do everything I want to do in the day time..  I need this horse!

-You know what this is.

-I need him.

-This is a raw deal.

-So Fuck you Twinkle Star!  Come on Friday!  Come on Friday!

-Away Friday!

-Go back to the bad side!  Evil Scorpion!

-Fuck you...

-Oh Friday.. I miss you already..

 

-That was fun…

-That was interesting. Yeah.. Yeah, I’ve never had so much trouble trying to cross a bridge.

-Well, you never crossed a bridge guarded by Twinkle Star..

-True, yeah, I’ve never across a bridge guarded by anyone.  I usually just walk across the bridge and enjoy the view. 

-Yes, actually, that’s when I thought about doing that.

-Oh,when you were walking across…  there’s a nice bridge near your house.

-Yes, and on my way here I was walking across the bridge - I thought to myself as I was crossing the mighty Hirose River

-Yes, the great river that run through Sendai

-I thought wow that would be crazy if one side of the bridge was all good and the other side was all bad.

-yeah, that is interesting idea.

-I thought if that were the case, there would need to be some kind of hero to guard the bridge.

-That’s funny because from childhood stories and myths and legends I always remember a Troll guarding a bridge.

-Oh yeah 

-It’s usually a bad guy

-That’s true

-usually it’s like Shrek or something

-Yes

-some monster under the bridge and you have to trick the monster or answer some difficult questions.

-Ohh that’s true. Usually the hero is the one whose trying to cross the bridge

-that’s right! Yeah and he has to deal with this annoying Troll.

-OK, next time you are guarding the bridge

-OK

-I am the hero. I’m crossing the bridge.

-Scorpion under the bridge

-Next time… Now Ben, we recorded an episode a little while ago where I asked you about your first job. 

-Yes, and I told you about my terrible experience at the pancake restaurant

-where you wore a pretty blue dress

-yeah and I danced around like Alice in wonderland

-Yes

-then I quit because I hated it that

-Right, but we didn’t have time to talk about my first job

-I suppose in Canada you can start working around the same age as in Australia which is, I think sixteen, -fifteen, -fifteen, sixteen yeah-yeah

-so what age were you when you first became employed when you first started working?

-31

-31?

-just joking..

-you were finally released from the hospital

-the mental hospital  -the mental hospital, yes

-No, I was…  I had a lot of summer jobs

-OK

-When I was fifteen… sixteen

-Were they “cash in hand”?

-Umm I don’t remember..

-illegal jobs? where you don’t pay tax you just get cash money?

-We call that “under the table”

-Ah OK, we call that “cash in hand”

-geting paid under the table

-Right 

-No taxes

-Yeah, sneaky

-No, no, they were regular jobs -OK -yeah, unloading trucks… loading, loading or unloading but that wasn’t my first job those were very short-term

-OK, so in Canada you have a long summer holiday 

-Yeah 

-a long break from school and during this time you have a chance to work

-yeah! Exactly 

-summer jobs 

-so those jobs were just like one week or two weeks.. (OK)  at a time

-my first regular job was working in a department store

-Oh really? was it a upmarket department store?  a kind of expensive department store?

-ah you say “upmarket”?  

-”upmarket”... classy

-In Canada we say “upscale”  

-“upscale”? Strange people Canadian..

-“upscale” means expensive and fancy 

-I’ve never heard “upmarket”

-I’ve never heard “upscale”

-Here we go! Canada and Australia!

-listeners, you choose!!

-Anyway, I worked in a big department store called Sears

-Ah Sears..I’ve heard of Sears

-ya It’s one of the biggest department stores in north America

-Right one of the original department stores? I believe since the 1950s?

-Yes, it has a long history

-The Sears catalog is famous, you could all the anything and I would mail it to you

-Yes, for they mail it to the store nearest to you and you can come pick it up

-I heard that they used to sell houses 

-Yes they did! 

-Yeah, like a kit that you would put together yourself 

-That’s right. people used to order a house from a catalog and it would come just all the wood and the nails with the instruction manual.

-I would be terrible at putting that together.  I struggle with IKEA furniture, so building a house…

-Your house would be so shitty

-I’d be like, page 3 of the manual, Ah fuck this!  Where does this go??  You know what?  Sorry family, no house!

-Your windows would be like triangle shape…

-Yeah they’d be Saran Wrap, my floors would be just dirt.

-Anyway, yes Sears has a long history.

-Did you have to wear a uniform?

-No but there was a dress code

-OK

-I had to wear a necktie

-Right

-and I had to wear you know, a name tag

-and you were standing at a counter?

-Yes

-and customers would come to the counter…

-and complain

-and complain

-yes generally

-This toaster doesn’t toast!  The bread’s not even cooked! … My sweater makes me itchy

-yeah kind of

-horrible

-yeah um it was difficult at times, the thing is, the customer service counter was also used for the catalogue sales

-OK it would be the pick up point … for the orders

-yes pick up and return

-it sounds like a challenging job for a young 16 year old…?

-I was 17

-17? And how many hours were you working there?

-I was going to college at the time so it wasn’t a full time job, but it was quite a few hours I think worked 25 hours a week

-did you work weekends?

-yep

-thats a busy time

-yup  whatever day they scheduled me. I worked

-do you remember your most difficult customer?

-Oh not really there were many…

-Oh everyday

-yeah it was the customer service department so kind of all the customers were difficult

-so all the abuse…  all of the anger…

-yeah buuuut that department was attached to the office

-right…

-so sometimes I would also work at something called the switchboard

-ah handling the phone calls

-yes so I would answer the calls and connect them to all the different departments and people

-OK so thats easy

-it was fun and I got to sit down

-nice and you didn’t have to deal with… the monsters.  If somebody was angry you say just a minute sir, just a minute ma’am…

-please go to the customer service desk

-right in Australia we call that a hand ball

-why?

-because you’re passing the problem to the next person hand ball is an Australian football term

-I see

-here you are!  Not my problem

-in normal English we’d say pass the buck

-Oh pass the buck

-yeah passing the buck

-pass the buck, cuz I don’t give a fuck

-yup let someone else do it pass the buck

-wash my hands of it

-ahh yes it means to not deal with a problem anymore

-yeah its a nice feeling

-anyway at the switch board another job I would do as the switchboard operator is I would do store announcements

-ah that sounds fun

-it was kinda fun yeah id be like thank you for shopping at Sears we have a 20% sale in the mens department.  Try on a pair of Levi’s jeans.  I’m sure you’ll love them.

-wow you have a nice voice for announcements.  Did you ever have a lost child?

-oh yes it happened yeah many times

-ah ladies an gentlemen theres a 7 year old boy wearing a blue T-shirt looking for his mummy…  Please come to the service desk

-Actually we would just say their name cuz we’d say what’s your parents name

-we have Brandon!  If you want to see him alive again come to the service desk

-and another thing was being attached to the office I also got to kind of look in at the security team

-Ah the security team

-yeah and they had all the cameras that they can spy

-right did you ever see anybody shoplifting?  Stealing from the store

-no whenever I got to use the camera I would usually look at the girl I had a crush on

-I thought so

-she worked in the housewares department

-so you would control the camera and zoom in

-lets see what Michelle is doing

-enhance! On her breasts, on her beautiful hips and caramel skin

-no… well yeah but no it didn’t zoom in like that!  I could just see oh hows Michelle doing?  I like the shirt she’s wearing

-shes going to take her lunch break hm

-your first job only lasted you two weeks

-yeah not long

-I worked in Sears for two years

-well your job sounds much more fun

-no it was terrible

-but more variety.  I’m washing dishes and getting screamed at thats it

-The thing is Ben, when you do a job for more than two weeks you slowly start to be given more responsibility

-you do?  

-yeah at first I was only doing…

-Responsi-what?  Responsiboogaly?

-at first I was only doing catalogue pick ups and I worked there for a month and… 

-the boss said this young Abe he’s got a bright future

-this star is twinkling!

-theres something about this little star…

-and then slowly I did different jobs

-OK 

-at first it was just catalogue pick ups and then the wonderful job of taking customer complaints

-worst job

-worst job

-interesting I did not know that

-it was my first job

-it sounds like a valuable experience

-it was

-you learned to communicate with people and stay professional and difficult job sometimes

-you learn to eat shit

-yeah you learn to enjoy the taste

-yeah eat shit or take shit

-hmm not that bad

-its terrible

-its actually not so bad when you eat it everyday

-eating shit is a part of life

-yeah and its actually a survival tool if you are alone or trapped on an island…

-Ben, stop

-you can eat your own shit

-no stop I’m trying to introduce a useful English expression, take shit or eat shit

-yeah it means to put up with and handle to cope with abuse or bad treatment or a bad experience

-yeah take shit from my boss

-thats right you don’t like it but you have to be strong

-yup sometimes you just have to eat shit

-dont complain eat it up

-with a smile

-finish your bowl abe I can still see a little bit of shit at the bottom of the bowl

-Gross!  OK Scorpion goodbye.  Goodbye Scorpion.

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