Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Sophomore Interviews: Supanut C. by Charlie B.

“Are you feeling super, Nut?” I ask Supanut C., a dorm student from Thailand. He smiles and shakes his head, as if to say, “I have heard that more times than you can count.” Although his real name in Thailand is Supanut, he goes by Nut as well, because it is easy to remember for Americans.
When I first met Nut, he didn’t say much, but he didn’t have to. Quietly, his smile and kind nature said all that was needed to say. Whether it was his trepidation with the English language, or just his shy personality, Nut and I slowly became friends through a non-verbal understanding and friendship. I would nod, perhaps say a greeting and he would nod back, smile from ear to ear, and say a different greeting to me. We continued this tacit understanding for a short time while we slowly became more comfortable with each other, and since then, we have become good friends. It may be his kind nature or his accepting personality, or his grin on his face each time I see him, but Nut is the kind of guy that people end up gravitating towards, for his happy-go-lucky nature is infectious and I really like that about Nut.
Nut is originally from Thailand, specifically in a small town near Bangkok. He just arrived here at OES this year and it is his first year at a boarding school. He is picking up the language well and wants to keep learning and get better at speaking it. One aspect of the dorm life that Nut specifically likes, is the independence that comes with it. Going out to eat with his friends is something that Nut tries to do at least once or twice per week. He says that he is not a huge fan of the cuisine from the OES food service, so going out to eat is one of the best options for Nut. He also enjoys going to the movies with his friends. Being a big fantasy and action movie lover, Nut can usually find a film that sparks his interest, and he thoroughly enjoys seeing the movies in theaters. At OES, Nut enjoys fencing. Whether it is the indoor aspect of fencing, or whether it is a multi-trimester sport which qualifies a student for all of his or her sport requirements in a given year, Nut has grown to like fencing and aspires to become a good fencer by the end of his high school career at OES. Nut also wants to play tennis at OES, which qualifies as a spring sport. He also has two younger brothers, the elder of the two, is currently applying to the OES boarding program and wants to come next year. Family is very important to Nut, as he believes that it is crucial to communicate with family and stay in touch as often as possible. When he told me this, I was not surprised at all. It makes sense that Nut, being a kind-spirited guy, would take family very seriously.
When asked what he does to help the community and people in general, Nut did what he does best,  he smiled as wide as the Colombia River, and he described how he tries to brighten up someone’s day by giving them a compliment, greeting them kindly, or even just smiling at them and giving them a friendly look. Similarly to the way that he treated me when the two of us were just getting to know each other, Nut smiles and is simply, “a nice guy”, to those who look like they might need an uplifting that day. Nut says how he thinks that something simple like that can many times make the biggest impact in a given situation. When asked what he would like to do in the future to help others, Nut said that if he learned enough English and become proficient enough at the language, he would really like to help people from Thailand, who might be struggling with learning English, and teach them the language. Nut explains how that is one of his greatest struggles, and he wishes that many people will not have to also go through a long period of uncomfortability with the English language. This sort of giving nature of Nut’s is habitual. He brings a smile with him wherever he goes. Whether it be accompanied by a greeting, or a conversation, or even no talking at all, Nut just wants to brighten each person’s day as much as possible.

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