Arsenio’s ESL Podcast: Season 3 – Pronunciation – Numbers in American/British English

So, while I was teaching my student from a Cambridge designed book yesterday, I couldn’t help but realize some of the numbers they said in the recording that kind of annoyed me.  Not distinguishing between 13-30 could be tragic, so I decided to make a podcast and put the numbers down.








Travel Blog/Ramble of Positivity: Episode 2 – Transition Is Here (3.5 Years & Gone)!

I have to take a look back on some of the greatest times of my life.  3.5 years and this chapter has ended for all the right reasons.  There weren’t necessarily outer forces holding me back, and of course, I’ve gone on rants about sex/wife tourists hating me because of me giving them the blunt truth, but what a remarkable run I had with amazing students.


These were the first three students I had ever met.  Well, I don’t want to mention the others (which were surely forgettable), but these were three magnificent beings.  The one on the left would just say “teacher” about five-thousands times per class.  The one in the black and grey sweater spoke the most English and Nus, at the top, had true potential.  This was my first evening class, which was given just after Halloween in 2014, and it’s one I have to cherish immensely.  Two of the girls have vanished and gone onto new walks of life, but the English speaking students hangs around from time-to-time on FB or Instagram.  She’s been there for me through thick and thin.

image1.jpegI love this part and I’m going to admit it at the same time.  She was a pre-intermediate student with high-hopes to go to England (and she ultimately went to Wales and graduated – looking absolutely marvelous to this date.  She was a gifted student who was at a very low-level (to take the IELTS examination), but after finishing her classes, she contacted me and wanted to pay much less — and of course — I agreed. I built her up in some hours and she achieved the score to head to Wales.  This was one of my “first of many” achievements!


This was the best summer (in terms of salary) and most influential month.  Not only did I teach at a province where it all began, but I taught TOEIC, a course that the majority of the “I’m-50-and-angry-at-the-world” teachers told me I couldn’t teach. So, let’s just put it simply — I DID! Not only did I do that, but this was the notorious trip when the marketing manager told me, “oh, it’s hard to market a black guy when we try getting companies.”  Yeah, July of 2016….this was the last time I ever got a project, and it should’ve been the time that I left…but I just got too complacent.

image1.jpegYoung, handsome as hell, and one of my favorite classes.  Skin and hair was looking GOOD back in the day! LOL. Some of these students are studying in England, Tokyo, and Australia.  Some went on to become successful entrepreneurs and one’s in the army.  Just star-studded!

What can I really say about this 3.5 years at a place (longest ever)? Well, I’ve had the opportunity to influence so many students who have gone on to the likes of Wales, America, Australia, Japan, Singapore – and I’ve also turned some of my students into big time entrepreneurs.  Teaching isn’t about just flipping pages.  The historical mindset, which is the majority of the older generation, feels that informational regurgitation is what academics are.  This is why is was time for me to go onto the next big step with my life because you can’t work with people who are unrealistic, lack of adaptation, and doesn’t focus on the students’ core genius.  If you feel you’ve gotten complacent and comfortable with doing something that doesn’t help humanity, it’s time to make something happen.  Like Gary Vee says, “you’re going to die soon.”  Rock the damn house!

Resignation In

For the snakes in Bangkok (just for a month or so) who might read this and might try to take action, I’m forewarning you to be careful what you wish for.

Teachers back in 2016 googling my name and listening to my podcasts to see if I implicated them; was told “you’re too black for the job” from the HR executive; removed from a Japanese company based on racial prejudices; I was told that I’m too charismatic; too loud, laugh too much; and above all, I was told “you’re not academic enough.” LOL

Some people can’t take the truth.  You always have to face what isn’t working, and I’ve never faced it until it backfired me in the most vicious way.

If you see the above comments, I should’ve given that resignation back in

I’ve been through hell and back with this place.  We are, as human beings, quick to judge and point out the negatives in a particular workplace, so I must be grateful, too.

I’m so unbelievably grateful that management gave an African American a full-time job at this particular language center in Bangkok, Thailand – the first ever in the company.  I was the Jesse Owens of the company.  The first “colored” man ever working there, just as Jesse was the first African American ever to run for the Ohio State University (fiends!).  I mean, it’s a special privilege.  There were times, like now, which I had/have no work because people simply don’t “like me.”  After I showed how great I was, I was considered a threat by many teachers.  You had the teachers, between 40-80 years old, who didn’t like me because I was too young, well-dressed, and always made my students laugh — compared to their historical style teaching.  I stood out, but didn’t know what my true self-worth was.  I recall being as dry as ever with work in December, and especially these last couple of months until I started telling myself, “Arsenio, enough is enough.  Face the fear of not getting a job — NOW!”

I got removed from two companies in a years time because they wanted a “white” teacher, and this is the ever-growing problem in terms of racial discrimination in the “slummy areas” of Thailand.  However, it was that moment that I told myself, “no, I’m not going to teach a class at this particular time on this particular day because I’m going to do what’s in the best interested of me.”

THAT MOMENT! Oh, that’s what landed me a half-dozen projects teaching executives and millionaires.  That moment is what I call “bread crumbs.”

Look, guys….this is nothing you’ve never seen before.  This isn’t a pity party, but this is that moment when I can run up those steps, just as Rocky did, and claim my title.


I overcame practically some of the worst bigotry from Englishmen, Americans, Dutch, and of course, the Thais, throughout this process.  All of these moments were life-defying, but they were also moments of “how bad do you actually want it, Arsenio?”   I’m not academic?

Over the last few days, my associates have told me to teach some of the most difficult test prep courses for a 60% increase.  These people believe in me.  That other place….didn’t.  It’s like the moment in the Great Debaters when Denzel Washington said, “when I’m at home and company comes over, they tell me to go into the kitchen and I laugh.”  Yeah, it was that moment about three years ago when the “white” man was walking down the hall with someone else from the infamous RMIT University in Australia when the lady scooted me inside of a room, closing the door while they walked past.

“Don’t show the nigga.  The nigga doesn’t make us look good.”

I laughed.  I’m grateful.  I never gave up until I said, “Arsenio, come on.  There are places both online and in-house, begging for your services just about everywhere.  Look elsewhere, set yourself up and get the hell out of that slumville.”

I did, universe.  I most certainly did.

And….What Now?

Ok, all stories and ranting is done.  History is over.  What is now?

The magic happens now.

Oh, the online business whereas my TOEIC, IELTS and TOEFL students can purchase courses and PDF’s off my website; my podcast that’s booming and going to land me huge speaking engagements; the people I’m bring into my life and on my podcast who are remarkably influential; the project that literally can change my pockets forever that’s launching next month; the part-time jobs and gigs that are coming in that will ultimately create an outstanding brand here in Thailand.

OH, YES! I can now breathe.  I’m no longer being strangled and trapped in a guillotine with the clamps tightening as everyday goes on.

Yeah, it’s that moment in your life where you took out the trash and now it’s a free-flowing of love, beauty, and harmonious prosperity flowing into your life.  That blockage is paralyzing people all around the world.  They’re waking up going to jobs that they absolutely HATE.  Well, not I!

And neither should you.

Take that leap.  Strap that helmet on and bulldoze through the mental barrier that’s keeping you in cement.  Please.

Rising Above The Madness

A series of these blogs could potentially coming out over the next several months until I agree upon my next destination.

The term “rise above it” came from a comical character I used to work with.  This was a 70-year-old Anglo man in one of the most anglo countries on planet Earth (Thailand).  I would tell him about my situations, and even what had happened last year and he shrugged it off like it was nothing.

How come is it that men, of all colors, just cannot show empathy and sympathy for their fellow men, regardless of creed, color, ethnicity, and cultural backgrounds?  On the other hand, if this many would’ve stood up for me when the going got going, the outcome could’ve potentially been much different.

It’s like the story I told sometime last year about the African American woman and Anglo woman in the store.  The Anglo woman had been going to this particular store for two weeks.  The African American had been going there for more than two years.  When both women approached the counter, the clerk greeted the Anglo woman with a big smile: and that same smile was changed right upside down when the African American woman approached the camera.  Yes, the African American woman greeted her with a big smile, just as the Anglo woman did.

This clerk went on to give the African American woman a very hard time, checking the check to see if it was real.  Thankfully, the Anglo woman spoke up and said, “ummm, excuse me. Why are you doing this to this woman?”

The clerk responded, “because I don’t know her…and I know you?”

“You’ve only known me for two weeks.  This lady has been coming here for over two years.”

That little difference means everything in the world.  If people can just speak up in the wake of a racially influenced situation, the world can rise above the world.

That particular gentleman, who I still have to see everyday of my life, just needed to hear my story and show empathy.  Instead, he deflected, like one of the world leaders, and told me to simply “rise above it.”

Easy for you to say.

But I will rise above it.  I have risen above it.  Looking back on the last five years of my life in Thailand, I’ve risen against pure insanity.  The comments I’ve gotten from everyone — to the failed job interviews because of the color of my skin — I am enough.

So many people around the world, including a singer by the name of Lil Kim, chose and still chooses to bleach their skin to make themselves more “fair.”  And because of the events where sympathy and empathy lacked, these individuals ultimately altered their skin tone because they were tired of being made fun of.

I’m challenging everyone to stand up for your fellow samaritan by your side in situations such as this.