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Hi. My name is Toby and I am the writer and teacher behind Bite Sized English. Today, I want to tell you a little bit about myself. About the person behind the voice you hear so often at Bite Sized English.
You know I am a teacher, but I think my profession is only a small part of who I am. I view myself as an American living in Germany. I really enjoy living in Germany, but I also really enjoy being an American. I don't think I will ever want to become German.
I view myself as an avid reader. "Avid" is a word that means that I like to do it. I love to read. I read, I don't know, probably a hundred pages a day. I can read a good book in three hours, if it's a really good book. I read, partly to improve my German. (You know I live in Germany and I think it's important to speak the language where you live.) And I read often in English just to unwind. I prefer a good book over the TV, anyday.
Something else I really enjoy is drinking coffee. I am coffee-lover! I am not what I think of as a snobby or stuck-up coffee drinker. I don't drink expensive coffee, I drink good coffee at a cheap price, and I drink a lot of it.
I also really enjoy being in the outdoors. I enjoy sunshine and walking through the woods and, to that end, or, for that reason, I have a dog. Her name is Katze, she's a dachshund. And I really enjoy having her for company, I enjoy the life and excitement she brings into our apartment and I definitely enjoy spending time outside with her.
As for my personality or the kind of person I am, I think I'm a very laid-back person, I think I'm a very relaxed person. I inherited my father's tendency to always want to be very, very on time. But I also experienced enough of that as a child to keep it bottled up inside. When we start to get behind and I want to start yelling for everyone to go fast, I know how annoying that is, and so I just swallow that urge and I say "Toby, calm down, it's okay." I think that's the only time I get really excited.
There are some things I don't like. I don't like driving a car. It's unusual for an American, but I drove a lot both privately when I was living in the U.S. driving to and from school and in the Army, I was a Humvee driver and I spent way too much time driving and I would not mind if I never drove again.
I do not like full trams. I love public transportation. I love walking to the tram, getting on, reading a book and, after I read a chapter or two, I'm at work. I love how relaxed that is. But I hate it when I go to the tram and there's no room to sit and I've been excited about reading and the tram is too full. I don't like it.
Uh, I have one more thing I don't like then one more thing I do like, and then I'll stop.
What I don't like is exercise. I exercise a lot because I don't want to be "the fat American." For many of my students, I am the only American they know and it's important to me that they don't have only one American in their life and he is very fat. The stereotype is already bad enough. So, I do go jogging. In the winter we started going swimming once a week, and I exercise in the apartment. I don't like it, but I do.
And the reason I do it – and the last thing I like – is I love to eat. I am an eater. I like food. I would eat just about anything that came across my path. Even worse, my wife is a wonderful cook. And that means I have a lot of good food to eat and, if I didn't exercise, I would have to stop eating as much and I like the food more than I hate exercising.
Well, that's all for today. I hope that this has been a good introduction to me.