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Bean There, Dunced That

My Iraqi students (who turned out to be middle-aged officials from the Ministry of the Interior, and not the police cadets I'd been promised) told me this morning that I was a beautiful and funny teacher.

"You remind me of Mr. Ben," Abudulrahamn said.

I wasn't sure who Ben was. Someone from his host family? Someone they knew back in Baghdad? After a bit of back and forth, we figured out that he meant Mr. Bean. The joys of pronunciation.

"I remind you of Mr. Bean?"

Yes yes yes, they all nodded in agreement.

"And that's a good thing?" I asked dubiously.

They assured me it was. Mr. Bean represents, according to them, the most beautiful of English comedy. So I guess it's a compliment. I'm still not convinced, especially after looking him up on yonder Wikipedia, which labels him ...

... a slow-witted, sometimes ingenious, childishly selfish and generally likeable buffoon who brings various unusual schemes and connivances to everyday tasks.

I reckon it's better than Jerry Lewis.

So now I guess I'll dig up some Mr. Bean videos and see if I can't incorporate them into a couple lessons over the next two weeks.