Ten questions with Toshio Nishida

In our latest Maculty Proust Questionnaire interview, Japanese teacher opens up about his love of wrestling, life in Japan


Japanese teacher Toshio Nishida while in Gokayama, Toyama Prefecture, Japan. Nishida is from Japan and he describes his home country as his happy place. “It’s always really a lot of fun to go there,” Nishida said. Photo courtesty of Nishida.

The Shield: When were you happiest?

Toshio Nishida: (laughs) In general, when I go back to Japan to be with my family and my friends, that’s probably the best time of the year.

TS: Who is your real-life hero?

TN: Terry Fang, he’s a professional wrestler, yeah, he’s probably my all-time hero. I’m a big wrestling fan, and he was very popular in Japan at the time. One time I wrote him a fan letter, and he wrote me back. That kind of inspired my to start studying English more and all that kind of stuff.

That kind of power would be really nice, to have the opportunity to redo whatever I have done wrong.

— Toshio Nishida

TS: If you weren’t a teacher, what would you be?

TN: Professional wrestler. I wanted to in Japan.

TS: What is your motto?

TN: Being happy, all the time, no matter what, you know.

TS: What is your most prized possession?

TN: My friends, probably. They help me a lot.

TS: If you could have one superpower, what would it be?

TN: To go back in time, that kind of power would be really nice, to have the opportunity to redo whatever I have done wrong.

TS: What are your favorite names?

TN: Names? (laughs) Like people?

TS: Like names, like what you call people names.

TN: Like John? (laughs) Well, probably Toshio, because it’s my name.

Traffic in this town really annoys me.

— Toshio Nishida

TS: Where is your happy place?

TN: Japan. Tokyo. Not really any specific place, just I have a lot of friends in Tokyo, and it’s always really a lot of fun to go travel there.

TS: What is your biggest pet peeve? Like something that annoys you?

TN: Hmm. Probably traffic, traffic in this town really annoys me.

TS: How did you get to where you are now?

TN: I studied English, then I studied how to teach Japanese, then I got this job. I studied in Japan, but I came for college here too–I studied in both Japan and here, in California and Kentucky, as an exchange student.