welcome to the wonderful world of george wally

Hello and welcome. Let me explain a few things about this homepage.

  1. Why did I make it?
  2. What does the site contain?
  3. Who is it for?
  4. When did I make it?
  5. How often is it updated?


Why did I make it?

When I told friends I was putting together a homepage, the first thing they all said was, "Why?" Stung somewhat by their lack of wide-eyed fervour I asked myself what I had expected them to say. Embarrassing as it is to admit, I realized somewhere deep inside I had secretly been hoping they would gasp in amazement and express their wonder at the bold adventure into cyberspace I was embarking upon. Something more James T. Kirk than a cut-away-your-legs-from-behind "Why?"

After hours of reflection in my office (the outside jacuzzi at the local sports club) I realized what I was seeking to achieve with my homepage. Ever the Scotsman I realized what I wanted was to kill not just two birds with the one stone, but to down a whole flock of seagulls.

  1. Bird 1: To tell high-school students taking the Daito Bunka University entrance exam what they might find if they entered the English and American Literature Department and took any of my classes.

  2. Bird 2: To tell students already enrolled in the department who I am and what I teach.

  3. Bird 3: To tell students already taking my classes what homework has to be handed in (and when), and to let them know what we've been doing just in case they have been away.

  4. Bird 4: To tell friends and family, and the people I chat to on my daily peregrinations on this great thing we call life (© Prince) what it is I do in my job. There are those (without naming names) who secretly suspect I am a lazy sod forever to be found taking long lunches and walks in the park. Now they will be able to see for themselves how wrong they have been. I also make homepages. Generally just after lunch and before the walk in the park. Depends on the weather really and how much wine I've had with my meal.

  5. Bird 5: To put together in one place all the different things I'm involved with. I liked the idea of having a filing cabinet full of my own stuff, out there on the aether, which I can access no matter where I am.

What does the site contain?

All sorts of fun stuff that'll help you while away the hours at your desk when you should be doing something more important (writing that bestseller, emptying your navel of lint, thinking up reasons Why Chocolate is Really Good For You). It also contains some only slightly less exciting stuff to do with my job:
  1. What classes I teach
  2. What research I have done (am doing . . .)
  3. What last week's homework was.

Who is this George Wally character and who is his homepage really for?

First things first, I am not the guy with the St George face-paint. He was just one of the many 'characters' in the crowd at the England - Nigeria game in the 2002 World Cup. I simply liked the photo and thought it'd look good on the index page. Now, if you're just itching to find out what I really look like (and I know you are), click on the Profile page. The B/W at the top is me. Or at least, was me, about twenty years ago. The one at the bottom is slightly more up-to-date. And there's a prize for guessing what I've got on my head ('wig' is not the correct answer).

In case you're wondering, no, Wally is NOT my real name (though friends often call me it). My real name is George Wallace. After 15 years in Japan I'd grown tired of people misspelling my surname (I've had everything from Wales to Ouresu, and a lot inbetween), so, to make life easier, I decided to use Wally instead. The book Where's Wally? was a big hit here, which makes my new moniker easy for Japanese people to remember. And easy for them to spell.

And just who is this all for? What is that I hear someone muttering in my ear? Flagrant self-publicity? Lordy! No, it is for people such as your good self: friends, Romans, and anyone else who has ever sent me an email.

When did I make it?

After years of promising myself I'd make one, doing plenty of fruitless worrying (is there any other kind?), and long hours spent vainly searching all my old Blue Peter annuals to see if Noakesy ever made one using an egg carton and a piece of string, I finally bit the bullet and borrowed a book from a friend. Dipping into that, and clicking on a few online tutorials gave me the confidence to try my hand at writing html tags. And here is the result! Oh, yes . . . the question was when?, wasn't it? In the winter vacation (2002 into 2003).

How often is it updated?

Your guess is as good as mine. In the early stages I had visions of a weekly update (yes! really!), full of hot news, even hotter photos, and some From Our Own Correspondent-type observations that would give a unique insight into the life of a university teacher's life in Japan. We'll have to wait and see on that one, but I wouldn't hold your breath.

Please tell me what you think of the homepage. If you have any comments or suggestions (however brief), please let me know. To contact me, click on the e-mail me link in the green column on the left.