The Toronto-Gunma boys come in hot on the very first episode of 2018. Gavin, Andrew, and Jeef reconnect after a two-week winter vacation. The gang is immediately trusted into car talk as we talk about Andrew’s busted bumper. Gavin also talks about getting a flat tire.
Afterwards, Gavin retells the tales of his two-week long southwestern Japan road-trip. Many places were reached, and many more Instagram photos were farmed. The gang compares the differences between being a tourist in popular Japanese tourist spots versus the Japanese countryside.
Picking up from Episode 3, Gavin talks about the possibility of staying in Japan for another year and half. He talks about the internal and external struggles of finally coming to a decision. The guys also talk about what to do with their remaining time in Japan. Immediate goals include studying Japanese, travelling, and starting a language exchange group.
Gavin is once again joined by Andrew, and fellow English teacher, Mat (with one T). Mat shares some Australian chocolates with the gang as we hear about why he’s teaching in Japan. Gavin talks about overcoming extreme heartbreak as the gang is recovering from the loss of – what will now be known as – the “lost episode” of DIU Podcast.
Issues this week include outrageous phone bills and slow ass Internet speeds, snow season in Japan, and the lack of a “regular sized” adult toothbrush. However, the main topic this week revolves around the gang’s impending decision of renewing the contract to stay in Japan for another year… Why are Andrew and Gavin on the fence? Tune in to find out!
Later on throughout the show, hearing about the Australian chocolates, another good friend (and English teacher), Lena, pops into the studio. She talks about her contract renewal decision and her desire to learn Japanese. We also hear some hot gossip about misbehaving co-workers and stories of how people keep hitting on her.
Jack returns behind the mic for the second installation of DIU Taiwan. This time, he is joined by Uncle Phil, a fellow teacher in Taiwan. Uncle Phil talks about his initial reactions upon landing in Taiwan. Uncle Phil compares his initial time in Taiwan with his time living in Beijing. We also hear about the two going to the Taiwan Pride Parade – and how Jack was super awkward.
We learn that Uncle Phil is also a Love Guru, as deemed by Jack. Jack revives the Kao Lui Corner and immediately puts Phil in the hot seat.
Gavin and Andrew check back in for the second installment of DIU Japan. This time they are joined by fellow Canadian English teacher, Jeef. This week, the gang focus their discussion heavily on driving in Japan.
Now well into their first few months in the Gunma prefecture, the gang all have rented kei (yellow plate) cars – expanding the realm of possibilities while exploring the land of the rising sun. But not all is right in this seemingly beautiful paradise.
Gavin rants about the fact that there is no “left on red,” how he paying more for insurance than Andrew and Jeef, and how amber lights literally last half a second.
We also talk about our boy Ebachan – A.K.A. a NPC mechanic character straight out of Initial D – and our two-hour hike up a mountain during a typhoon.
Other topics include super thin apartment walls, the legendary gaijin smash ability, and the group of people known as gaijin hunters.
(Recorded on September 18, 2017)
Apologies for the delay, as it took me two-plus weeks to edit this episode (read: get my shit together)
Jack and Kyle return behind the mic for the first episode of DIU Podcast – Taiwan Edition. The two talk about their initial month in the land of bubble (a word Jack can’t pronounce for some reason) tea, and the start of their careers as English teachers. This episode’s barrage of topics include: being Asian-Canadian in Taiwan, living in a cash-based society, Jack’s gangster landlord, Kyle’s love for McDonald’s delivery, and teaching English to kids. We also learn that Jack is super poor, and already borrowing money from other people.
What future adventures are in store for the DIU Taiwan gang? Stay tuned to find out!
After spending a month getting acclimated to his new home, Gavin returns behind the mic for the premiere episode of DIU Podcast: Japan. Gavin is joined by long-time friend, and fellow English teacher, Andrew.
The two talk about the initial month in Japan. Topics include: buying shoes, setting up apartments, social conformity, work-life balance, cultural distinction, Japan as a cash society, and the North Korean missile threat.
Stay tuned as there will be many more issues to be uncovered; whether in Japan or globally.
I mentioned that the North Korea fired a missile over Japan on Monday (Aug 28) – I misspoke. Although Western media would have learned of the news on Monday, the actual event happened on Tuesday (Aug 29) in Japan.
The final shebang! Gavin and Jack sit down for one last time before the two go their separate ways. Michael finally gets the (super limited edition) DIU Podcast mug (won on episode 32) signed by the hosts at the absolute last date possible. And for some reason, Jack throws some random brain teasers at Gavin.
Gavin talks about the issue of packing, specifically packing at the very last minute. The gang talk about packing strategies and what type of clothing to bring when leaving for a year (or longer). The crux of the issue turns out to be packing shoes – how many should we bring? Meanwhile, Jack talks about his feelings as the group sets to disband. We reflect on the long journey which has been DIU Podcast and talk about the future of the show.
Afterwards, Jack concludes the final Kao Lui Corner with an article about how to be an Alpha (part 2 from last week’s article). Everything comes full circle as the man who has lost his confidence throughout season three returns full force as the Love Guru we all know and love!
Big shout-out to all our listeners; stay tuned for more shenanigans… from the other side of the world!
We are joined by DIU Podcast’s substitute co-host, Kyle – who recently hooked the entire team up with fidget spinners!!! Gavin recalls Jack’s hatred for the toy on episode 51. Times have since changed, as Jack is the most obsessed with the toy out of the entire group.
Gavin brings in the topic of China’s Nobel laureate Liu Xiaobo passing away from multiple organ failure. Serving an 11-year prison sentence in China for “inciting inversion of state power,” Liu was denied access to medical treatment abroad. Many critics are outraged that China would not release the prisoner. We discuss if there is a “right” or a “wrong” approach to this situation, as well as brief thoughts on China and Communism. Meanwhile, Jack, undoubtedly self-conscious about his current position in life, talks about how many young adults are still living with their parents. We talk about how this was stigmatized in the past, but is slowly becoming more and more acceptable as cost of living continues to rise.
Afterwards, the Love Guru tells us about the three different types of men in this world – alpha, beta, and omegas – in a part one of this week’s Kao Lui Corner topic.
Brandon (episode 24) returns to the podcast to confront Jack about trying to sell him overpriced concert tickets. We also hear about how he had spent the past semester studying in Edinburgh and travelling around Europe.
Jack brings in the issue of the impending minimum wage increase expected for Ontario. The plan would see Ontario’s minimum wage jump to $15 by January 1st, 2019. We talk about the pros and the cons of this decision and how this will ultimately impact us. Meanwhile, Gavin talks about the unexplainable trend which is the fidget spinner. More importantly, should Gavin get one?
Afterwards, the Love Guru discusses a situation happening to his friend.
We briefly touched upon the minimum wage in Alberta. The current minimum wage over there is $12.20 (compared to $11.40 in Ontario) for general workers. The minimum wage in Alberta is expected to raise to $15 by October 1st, 2018.
You’re listening to the University episode of DIU Podcast! This week Gavin brings in the issue of whether or not he should go to his university graduation ceremony. Meanwhile, Jack hijacks Gavin’s issue by bringing in the topic of how post-secondary education isn’t as cracked up as its made out to be.
One more huge shout-out to the Toronto Raptors who were eliminated from the NBA Playoffs on Friday May 27. They went further than most people expected and we’re looking forward to seeing the Raptors back in action next season!