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Thursday, December 2, 2010

Journal #26

Snow is so pretty, but I also hate it. However, I really like it when it gets me out of school because I really hate school. Snow is just so pretty and white, and I like to watch it fall. It makes everything so peaceful, except, of course, when there is a blizzard. Have you ever been caught out in a blizzard? It is really scary. Everything, literally, is totally white or grayish white, and there are only slight outlines of objects. It makes it completely impossible to drive in, and it is still really cold. But, snow usually brings about memories of sitting in my living room with my family in the lack of power, talking about some random thing or struggling to find candles to play a board game. Or, snow also makes me think of Christmases I have been to, but that makes me think of sad things, knowing that Christmas will never be the same. I love Christmas, though, because I get so much food and a few gifts, and it is the only time in the year that my whole family gets together for one common purpose. But, like I said, I will never have the same Christmas experience again. So, as I return to typing this blog late at night, I look out the window and still see snow on the ground! If it is not quite clear, I like having snow on the ground, especially when there is just enought to make a small sheet over everything, so that I am still able to see the outlines of things. When there is too much snow, all the trees just look like a blob of white mixed with the land below them, and it is not as pretty. Also, I really like looking at pictures of mountains because they usually have snow on the peak, but it is the right amount because I can still see all the crevices and outcroppings all over the side. Something about it just makes me marvel at the world and how awesome it is, kind of like the ties that bind us all. So, now that I have pretty much covered (ha get it? Covered? because snow covers everything!) everything I have to say about snow, I think I will go to bed now. Good night, internet!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

"The Minister's Black Veil"

Honestly, I find it somewhat difficult to describe this story, "The Minister's Black Veil," as part of the Dark Romanticism style of writing because it is merely a story. There is not much left up to the reader to be afraid of or be confused about, other than the obvious fact that the minister is wearing a black veil for no apparent reason. It is really only confusing that the minister has a sudden and totally radical change in thought and begins wearing this. The reader, or any of the townspeople, for that matter, does not understand the reason behind the minister's veil. The parishoners just think it must be the work of the Devil simply bwecause they do not understand the minister's thoughts. The veil was a sort of "shield" between the man of God and the rest of the mortal world, nothing more, and nothing less. I thought it was sort of ridiculous how long and drawn out the story was; much of it seemed very repetitive and just plain boring. But, still, the people of the town were certainly confused. "'He has changed himself into something awful only by hiding his face.'" (Hawthorne, 281). This is totally true; all the poor man did was put his face behind a thin piece of cloth, and the whole town reacted so violently. I suppose, psychologically, since the minister was the town's source of God, they have a good reason to be scared and confused. They are used to the minister being somewhat melancholy and somewhat indifferent, but this mask made it so they were not able to read his emotions as well because they could not see his face. Listening to his words was made much harder because they were constantly distracted by the confusion behind his black veil. Also, as I said before, they are very uncertain of the origin of the veil because it is black, and the color black is usually thought to be of the Devil. It is usually associated with death and dying, so it could be assumed by the town that the minister is dying or his faith is dying, where in reality, the minister simply wore it to show, physically, the black veil that every person wears. The townspeople just did not really think about their own black veils because they are not as prevelent as the minister's veil. He did this act to sort of trick the town into realizing their own faulties and "veils" they use to hide those downsides. Everyone, even today, puts on a mask sometimes to hide their emotions because they are trying to deal with s difficult time in life. The minister simply wanted the town to become aware or these masks. Their reactions were very justified, though, because they were afraid of the veil, since they were not quite aware of their own. It was quite different to the town. It was a wake-up call done by the minister to the town in that he knew they were all guilty of wearing these masks, but he just wanted the town to know it like he did.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Journal #25

Wearing a mask...hmmm...how many times have I worn a mask? Should this be a lot, should it not? The problem with this is that I have no idea what they could have been for because I would not remember anything about it because this is a bad journal topic. I just do not like it. But, I suppose I could write about some sort of story that pertains to wearing masks. So, once upon a time, there was a sleepy fish. His name was George, and he was trying to find his way across the Pacific Ocean. Then, as he was swimming along one day, in his very melodic, hypnotic state, he discovered this sort of hidden jewel lying on the bottom of the sand bar. His first thoughts were something like "OMG WTF is this???" but as he swam closer, he found holes in his beautiful jewel, literally. There were two holes toward the top of the object, and there was another larger hole at the bottom. It was so full of colors and mystery and wonder, and little George was just drawn into its beauty. The magic in it was simply indescribable. Since the poor little fish had been swimming all day for the past eight days, he decided to finally give himself a break and take a nap. Since this thing at the bottom of the ocean appeared not to have been touched or even thought of in at least twelve years, George swam down to it, got inside of the mysterious object, and fell right to sleep. He slept so soundly that night. In the morning, when George awoke, the object was gone, and his face was really itchy. A passing crab took one look at the fish and ran as quickly as possible away from the little fishy. To his great horror, George was told that his face was horribly discolored. Apparently, he had fallen asleep on the object, and the mask surprisingly became a part of his image. That is what he gets for hiding in a mask. Now wasn't that a good story?

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

"The Pit and the Pendulum"

Edgar Allan Poe's great short story, "The Pit and the Pendulum," is so full of characteristics of Dark Romanticism. For example, the main character in the story is trapped in a dark room for the first rough half of the story. He has nothing to do but try to explore his vast cavern of a prison chamber. He thinks he makes one revolution around the room, but he totally miscalculated his distance he traveled, and the room was a lot smaller than he had first thought. Then, as his confidence grew, the man ventured out toward the middle of the room, but he tripped! Luckily, he tripped and fell just in time, for in two or three more steps, he would have fallen into a sort of well to meet his untimely death thereafter. The reader never knows what will come next for the narrator, which is a key part of Dark Romanticist writing. In fact, the ending seemed to have come way to early. I thought he would escape his tomb, which he did, but it ended so abruptly. I wish there was a fight with his captors or something to give justice to the poor man, especially after seventy thousand rats were jumping all over him, trying to eat the flesh from the still living character. Also, majorly tied up in this story, fear has a lot to do with Dark Romanticism. In "The Pit and the Pendulum," the narrator has no idea what would ever happen to his near future. He could have died at any time. This is true also in that the pendulum swung so very near his beating chest. The rats could have killed him, or the pit in his first chamber cell. Really, he had probably five or six possible ways of death. He could have drowned, starved, eaten, cut in half, or something simple like tripping in the cell and falling on the hard ground and hitting his head. It is extremely possible to kill yourself doing that. As he went through this traumatic experience, he had no control over his emotions, either, because he had no clue to what his future could be. His death seemed so eminent that he had no time to dwell on emotions. Finally, of course, this entire story is one big mystery in that, again, the man does not know what could happen in his future. Personally, I would have cried. It is commendable that he did not take himself out in the pit because it must have just been so looming, sitting there in front of him, practically mocking him. Then, it was mysterious for him to try to figure out a way out of his chamber. He searched and searched for a way out of the first one, and he found a slight possibility, which was just outside a small crack running all the way around the room. It was just large enough to let light in, but that did not stop him from trying to get out through it. Also, how the prison was liberated just in time was quite mysterious, but I suppose that worked as an ending, since the story was not heading in the direction of an end to the story.

Bibliography

Poe, Edgar Allan. “The Pit and the Pendulum.” Glencoe Literature. Ed. Jeffrey Wilhelm. American Literature ed. Colombus: McGraw-Hill, 2010. 263-273. Print.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

"Review of 'The Raven'"

The essay starts out in possibly the best description of what Edgar Allan Poe's, "The Raven," is about. The author says, "'The Raven' is a similarly beautiful poem. Many readers who prefer sunshine to the weird lights with which Mr. Poe fills his sky, may be dull to its beauty, but it is none the less a great triumph of imagination and art." (Cooke). This might be my favorite explanation of Poe's general works I have ever read because it goes so far beyond just true. No, I would describe it as "super-true" because it describes exactly the writing style Poe uses in just one sentence. Basically, Cooke says that those people who prefer stories about happy times with endings of the main character falling in love and riding off into the sunset with his beautiful but fair maiden on the back of his trusty steed may not like Poe's work. This is very true because poe does not use anything close to that sort of plot line. In fact, Poe uses much fear and mystery in his stories. For instance, "The Raven" includes the narrator verging on the point of insanity with the bird that flew through his window. He is unsure if he should trust the bird because he is not sure the bird is work of God or of the Devil. If the bird has come from the Devil, he is certain it is there to give a constant reminder of how his wife, Lenore, will always and forever be gone. This plot gives a sense of illusion in that the bird may not even be real. It could just be an figment of his imagination because the bird is able to talk in English, which most birds cannot. Also, as Cooke points out, the word choice in "The Raven" is "well chosen" in that "(the words) bestow a touch of the fantastic, which is subsequently introduced as an important component of the poem." (Cooke). The fantastic is definitely a rather large part of the poem because Poe fills it with horror events that seem as if they have no place in a poem. For example, the raven is able to speak, but it can only speak one word and at only the perfect and appropriate times. It seems strange that the raven is almost having a conversation with the narrator, and it feels like the raven is understanding what the narrator is asking and saying (or screaming, in some cases). It could be described as fantastic to enter the raven at such a suspenseful time, as well. Along the same direction, I find the word "fantastic" to describe the poem well, but I do not think it gives quite enough justice to what Poe tried to accomplish. He wanted the reader to feel frightened, but I think "fantastic" just sounds like it is very unique or out of the box. It does not sound like how I would imagine Poe wanting it to sound. However, I still am a good fan of Edgar Allan Poe's classic masterpiece, "The Raven."

Works Cited

Cooke, P. Pendleton. "Edgar A. Poe," Southern Literary Messenger (January 1848). Reprinted in The Recognition of Edgar Allan Poe, ed. Eric W. Carlson (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1966): pp. 21–23. Quoted as "Review of 'The Raven'" in Harold Bloom, ed. Edgar Allan Poe, Bloom's Major Poets. Philadelphia: Chelsea House Publishing, 1999. (Updated 2007.) Bloom's Literary Reference Online. Facts On File, Inc. http://www.fofweb.com/activelink2.asp?ItemID=WE54&SID=5&iPin= BMPEAP21&SingleRecord=True (accessed November 23, 2010).

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Explication of "The Raven"

Literal Meaning:
Once, late at night, I was thinking about the old, forgotten tales I used to read. As I was nearing sleep, I heard a noise from the door. I shrugged it off, thinking it was only someone at the door, nothing else. It was in the dismal December. The fire was burning only embers. I longed for it to be morning again. Unsuccessfully, I had searched for a way to end the sorrow over my lost love, Lenore, the beautiful woman whom the angels gave name, now without a name. As the breeze russled the purple curtains, I was thrilled - full of such terror I had never felt before. I was so scared that I simply stood there repeating "It's only someone knocking at the door just really late. It's nothing." As I repeated this, I grew more and more confident and said aloud, "Sir or Madam, I am very sorry, but I was just trying to sleep when you came knocking. It was so quiet I was not sure if someone was there." Here, i opened the door wide to find nothing there, only darkness. For what seemed like an eternity, I stood there looking into the darkness, wondering, fearing, and doubting anyone ever being there. Dreams no one should ever have came into my mind. Still, the silence and darkness from outside the room remained. I quietly whispered the word "Lenore," and all I heard was the echo in receipt. All my soul turned with me to go back to bed, but I heard another tapping, this one slightly louder than the last. I said, "surely, surely that is someone at the window. I will explore this mystery and calm myself down. It must just be the wind - nothing else." I flung open the shutters, and a dignified raven stepped into the window. He made no acknowledgement of my presence. He flew up to a perch above my door. I smiled at the bird. Because of the dark dignification of appearance it gave me, I asked it, "Even though your feathers are so beautiful, are you sure you are no coward? You old, unsightly raven, tell me your name." The raven said, "Nevermore." I was so surprised to hear the bird speak, though it spoke little and gave even less information, considering that probably no one has ever had a bird over their door with the name "Nevermore." Still, the bird spoke only that one word, like he were pooring out his soul into that one word. He did nothing until I finally said, "Other friends have come before, but he will leave by the morning, like my hopes have gone before." Then, the bird said, "Nevermore." Startled that the bird replied, I said, "Obviously, that is the only word it can say. He must have been trained by someone to say only 'nevermore.'" Still, however, the raven made me smile. Quickly, I turned a cushioned seat to face the bird. Sitting down on it, I began thinking what the bird could mean by saying "nevermore." As i guessed, the raven gave no hint as to what it could be. I sat easily in the velvet chair, continuing to ponder what the bird could have meant. Then, I felt the air grow heavier. I cried, "You are dispicable! God has sent you to make me forget my loving memories of Lenore! Drink, oh drink, this kind forgetful drink, and forget my lovely Lenore!" The raven replied, "Nevermore." "You evil prophet, being from God or the Devil! Whether the tempter sent you or tossed you aside here, tell me honestly, is there balm in Gilead?" The raven, again, simply replied, "Nevermore." "Prophet," I exclaimed, "being of bird or Devil, tell me if in the near future I shall hold a beautiful woman whom the angels have named Lenore!" Again, the raven replied only the word, "Nevermore." "Fine!, then! Make that our final words spoken!" I screamed angrily. "Get out of my room! Leave no trace of your being here! Get out!" "Nevermore," spoke the raven, calmly. Still, the raven sat there atop my door, without moving and inch, his eyes appearing to be dreaming the dream of a demon. And, the light above him throws his shadow onto the floor, along with my soul, which shall be lifted off the floor nevermore.

Poetic Devices:
The first, and probably most obvious, example of a poetic device is the rhyme at the ends of each line with other lines. Also, there is rhyme within the lines. Also, there is a lot of repitition because of the word "nevermore" that the raven repeats. Next, the raven could be symbolic of death or the Devil. Then, Poe personifies the raven by giving it the ability to speak. Finally, there is a small amount of alliteration.

Figurative Meaning:
As the poem opens, the main character is mourning the loss of his late wife and beloved, Lenore, late at night. Suddenly, there is a sound at the door, but no one is there. Then, there is a sound at the window, and when he opens it, a raven flies into the room. Since he was just thinking about Lenore, he suspects the raven was brought to him to distract him from such sad thoughts. For some reason, the character asks the raven questions about his lost love. When the bird replies only with the word "Nevermore," he interpreted it as saying that his love shall never return to him. When the raven does not leave after the character had ordered it to, he assumes it means his long to have his Lenore again will never go away.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Journal #24

Um, sure, of course my mind has played tricks on me. The problem with this journal entry topic is that I do not really care to remember a time when the mind played tricks on me. First of all, I do not care about the times I screwed something up. Also, I am sure there have been so many times in which this has happened that I probably just blocked them out of my memory. They seem to be pretty unimportant, so why would I even want to remember such insignificant times in my life. However, now that I had already written a whole journal about other things, my english teacher decided to read it and is now wanting me to rewrite it and stay on topic. So, now I suppose I should rack my mind for some sort of a story about a time in which my mind played tricks on me. Actually, I supppose this exact instance could constitute my mind playing a trick on me. What I mean by this is that it just tricked me into believing that my english teacher does not actually read any of the journals, which I previously had thought because we still do not have any grades in STI for that class. So, taking that into consideration, I would think that means he has not read any of them. Apparently, he was actually just creeping on me, which is also something my mind tricked me into believing would never happen because I thought he had better things to do during his free time. But, in reality, my mind has now learned to write journals that pertain to the topic for the entire entry. Also, my mind tricked me into thinking I would have my privacy in my blogs considering that it has my name on top of it. I do understand that it is for a grade, but I really thought I would not receive an email warning me that the previous version of this entry was less than sufficient. However, I am still thankful for receiving it instead of a less than satisfactory grade for the whole entry.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

"Thoreau's Walden and the American Dream: Challenge or Myth?"

The author, Michaela Keck, begins the essay with an opening statement, basically describing the centrality of Thoreau's thoughts around society and nature as two completely separate creatures. "The interconnectedness between civilization and nature is as central to Thoreau's thought as the interconnectedness of mind and body, the ideal and the real." (Keck). First of all, this is a sort of odd way of describing it here. Personally, I do not believe that the mind is connected to the body in any other way than its physical attachment through the spinal cord and whatnot. I think our minds will die when the body dies because there will be nothing left for it to do, essentially; in other words, I believe in science as making the most sense. Next, in every sort of way, the ideal is not the real. It is practically impossible to assert that we live in an ideal world, but we certainly live in a real world - one, in fact, that is so full of miscalculations and dillusions, that it seems this so called "ideal" is so widely ranged in definition according to religion and philosophy. It is darn near the point of not even using "ideal" to describe something because my version of ideal can be (and probably is) different than that of ninety-nine percent of the school I attend. There are so many things to disagree on that it actually seems like a useless word. Despite all of this, however, I see the point Keck is trying to make - that Thoreau is extremely centered around the connection between civilization and nature. Also, in a line following, Keck embodies my point of impossibilities by saying, "And in fulfillment of the American Dream, Walden embodies both success and failure." This just goes to show that it is impossible to please everyone and everything because you even, sometimes, hurt yourself by failing yourself. One other thing that I like about this essay is that Keck included both sides of Thoreau: "...Thoreau, the nature lover on the one hand, and Thoreau, the social critic on the other, calling for 'Simplicity, simplicity, simplicity!'" This draws out the point that Thoreau did not only go out to the woods simply to bond with nature, no. But, he did go out to show the world that it is just as easy to live without the luxuries of everyday life and because he limply enjoys nature. He went out to the woods to say "hey, I can do this, so why can't you?" I really like this about him because the world, especially today, is so full of unnecessary luxuries, such as electricity, including everything that also runs on electricity. It is not totally necessary, but it is awfully useful. Also, he chose to go out into nature because he would be able to grow back closer to himself. That is another thing that a lot of people probably need. I do not, however, agree that the time spent alone in the woods should equal anywhere even close to two years, two months, and two days. No, I think just a weekend would be extremely sufficient.

Works Cited

Keck, Michaela. "Thoreau's Walden and the American Dream: Challenge or Myth?" In Bloom, Harold, ed. The American Dream, Bloom's Literary Themes. New York: Chelsea Publishing House, 2009. Bloom's Literary Reference Online. Facts On File, Inc. http://www.fofweb.com/activelink2.asp?ItemID=WE54&SID=5&iPin= BLTTAD021&SingleRecord=True (accessed November 17, 2010).

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Journal #23

How could it be possible to live without any technology? I did not think it could be possible because there are so many things that run on or at least just use electricity. Also, in my normal life, I run on those things that run on electricity because there is pretty much nothing else to do at home. I am on Facebook about once every two hours, and I am sometimes on it for hours at a time. It has really become my fourth love, behind my Xbox360, the television, and the obvious one, my girlfriend, who I certainly love the most. Now, I ask of you to remember that this exit from the basic "society" would include living without a cell phone for the time because of the rules of the trip. But, hypothetically speaking, of course, a bear were to maul you when you were in your tent sleeping? Let me say that you are perfectly living but only with a large gash in your right leg, crippling it to the extent that you are unable to walk. What are you going to do? In this "unplugging from everything," you would also be completely alone out there in the woods. How would you live? How could you survive? Hmmm... oh that is right. YOU WOULD DIE. So, because of these simple reasons as listed above, I have decided to stay home from this horrible idea and live peacefully and still with the ability to walk. However, if under some stupid circumstances, I were forced to go out into the woods for a whole week, I think I would do just fine without my phone or computer or even the television. It would probably suck, but I do not think I would totally cave in and make a break for it back to society and electricity. I would simply be extremely lonesome out in the woods. Much of my time would be spent sleeping or at least resting because that is usually what I like to do when I am bored. In the time I am not sleeping or resting, I would probably be out hunting or looking for some form of nourishment.

Monday, November 15, 2010

"Civil Disobedience" and "On the Eve of the Historic Dandi March"

So, first of all, there is one hugely obvious similarity, and that similarity is that, in both cases, the author is making it publicly known that they plan to totally disregard all the rules. Both of them are or were completely willing to accept the consequences. They both know and understand the wrong in what they are doing, but both of them think they should be allowed to do whatever they want. For example, throughout the entire passage, Gandhi is talking about when he and his comrades are arrested, the other people who are not arrested need to take up where they left off and keep Gandhi's dream alive. "My compact with the Congress ends as soon as I am arrested. In that case there should be no slackness in the enrolment of volunteers. Wherever possible, civil disobedience of salt laws should be started." (Gandhi, 229). Next of all, it sure seems like it does not matter to either person what will happen or what has happened. In fact, Thoreau seems rather happy to be locked up in the jail. With this, I totally understand because, in the way he is describing it, I do not think his cell could be that bad. They are giving him free food and a place to sleep and some companions to talk with both in the cell and out in the yard. I do not think it would be too bad either, actually. Everything I might need would be right there for me to have without having to pay for it. Does that really seem bad? Is it bad to have everything placed in your lap for you? I certainly think not, sir. However, on the other side of the punishment, Thoreau is already in jail, but Gandhi is practically preparing himself and the crowd for going to jail. Also, both participants are believing very strongly in why they are doing what they are doing because, in the case of Henry David Thoreau, he thinks it ridiculous to have to pay a tax on something he did not use. Thoreau is complaining about the poll tax because he did not vote, but the government is trying to force him to pay it regardless because that is the law. Obviously, he is quite unhappy about this because he did not use any service or receive anything, so why should he have to pay for anything? As a result of his not paying the tax, he is thrown in jail. Gandhi is also understanding of what he is doing. Yet, he continues doing it because he feels it is the right thing to do. He does not believe the Indian government is treating everyone fairly, so he organizes this "Dandi March" to protest salt taxes, among other things. Actually, both of these situations include the same basic principal: there is one person who knows he is doing an illegal action, but he is perfectly fine with it because he is standing up for what he believes in. As I said, I agree with what Thoreau did, and now that I think about it, I agree with what Gandhi did too because he is making a stand for the little guy who does not have a real voice in the government.

Works Cited

Gandhi, Mohandas K. "On the Eve of Historic Dandi March." Glencoe Literature. Ed. Jeffrey Wilhelm. American Literature ed. Colombus: McGraw-Hill, 2010. 229-230.
Print.

Thoreau, Henry David. "Civil Disobedience." Glencoe Literature. Ed. Jeffrey Wilhelm. American Literature ed. Colombus: McGraw-Hill, 2010. 222-227. Print.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Journal #22

Well, first of all, I do not truly believe there is any place where it is okay to disregard the rules or laws. I think that since we are all part of the same society, we should all have to and be able to follow those same rules. However, if there is or was a reason to totally disregard the law, I think it would have to be if there is a serious situation like having a baby. That is the kind of emergency that I think could constitute speeding over the posted speed limit, but that is not a situation where the driver should do something crazy like blow through a red light because there is a huge, and I mean enormous, chance of getting hit by another car or hitting another driver (or pedestrian walking across the street). Another possible time to disregard the law would be in an apocalypse. Under this scenario, there would be no hope left because the world is about to die, so there could not be too many possible repercussions. I mean, I think getting put in jail would not do too much to my mindset because I would only be in there for, let me say, about three hours. Then, naturally, my body would take its course in life and be done with it, along with about six billion other people who inhabit the world right now with me. But, in that exact situation, how very unlikely it may be, pretty much everyone would be breaking the laws because they would all think the same way as what I just said. I think that if we were to undergo an apocalypse right now, the world would go into war, eventually killing most of the population before the real emergency had the chance to kill them. Unfortunately, after reviewing this journal entry, I have realized that this actually has pretty much nothing to do with Romanticism, and I am truly sorry for my lack of making sense.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

"Emerson and the Work of Melancholia"

Can I please just say how totally hipocritical Emerson is by completely disregarding literally everything he had been saying about Romanticism for the past, oh, I would say, lifetime? Is it not ridiculous to say that he is sort of a jerk after all of these years? Might that be fine if I were to begin a life of vegetables, solitude, and a fear of sunshine with no probable cause for any of them? Hmmm...That seems oddly familiar. I think Ralph Waldo Emerson might have said the same kind of thing when he moved into a new section of thinking - Transcendentalism. And, why again did he make this switch? Was it for a legitament reason? Um, no? Oh, ok. I see. That makes sense. Let me completely change my mind about life and living it just because I woke up this morning on the left side of the bed with only half the sheets over me. Yes, that seems quite reasonable. So, thank you for listening to my rant about how stupid Mr. Ralph Waldo Emerson is. "Yet Emerson doesn't just preach against mourning. He offers a philosophy of aggressive perpetual motion by which we can throw off circumstances before they have become confining... To begin dwelling in received forms is, for Emerson, to enter the house of mourning." ("Emerson..."). In this excerpt from Mark Edmundson's "On the Works of Ralph Waldo Emerson," Emerson is showing the transition from Romanticism as he loses the friendship of his life-partner and brother. He is the kind of person who does not believe in crying or, apparently, acceptance of loss. I do not think he really got how deep the cut was. mourning is the largest and easiest form of coping, and it seems as if he should have, at the very most extreme of a least, acknowledged both of their deaths. But, he felt it necessary to skip the mourning process because connections to those who will be lost only lead to pain in the future when they are lost. I suppose I understand this now that i am writing about it, but, I also see that if you love someone, such as your wife, you should show it by commemorating their beautiful life and glorious death as best as possible. I think Emerson was being more childish by not admitting death and glorifying their lives as they were because it takes more maturity to face a problem than to try to hide it under your false smiles. If it makes you feel any better, talk to someone about it; but do not simply cover it up with your lack of emotions. Even still, Emerson was fantastic at preaching his Romantic views. Why he gave it up must be a decision that was made hundreds of years ago when this crazy man lived. It must have been a long and thoughtful decision, but I am sure Emerson went through the process to find the correct answer. I do not know if he made the correct decision, but he is, indeed, sticking to his decision.

Works Cited

"Emerson and the Work of Melancholia." Raritan (Spring 1987). Quoted as "Emerson and the Work of Melancholia" in Bloom, Harold, ed. Ralph Waldo Emerson, Updated Edition, Bloom's Modern Critical Views. New York: Chelsea House Publishing, 2006. Bloom's Literary Reference Online. Facts On File, Inc. http://www.fofweb.com/activelink2.asp?ItemID=WE54&SID=5&iPin= MCVRWE007&SingleRecord=True (accessed November 12, 2010).

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Journal #21

So, there is this secret, and no one knows this secret, except for me, apparently. I am not sure how I learned this secret, but I know it must be true. Are you ready? Well, I have learned that both of these men have secret identities, and do you want to know what they really are? Actually, Ralph Waldo Emerson and Benjamin Franklin were sorcerers with the magical powers of influencing thousands of other commoners. Emerson accomplished these goals by writing spells and enchantments in the forms of essays and poems,including all sorts of long and confusing words to distract the reader while they are secretly being hypnotized into believing that Emerson is a good writer. But, in reality, these combinations of words have no real meaning and are sometimes contradicting themselves, but that is the key to a great and almighty sorcerer. When he wrote about finding the soul in solitude, he was actually implying an underlying message from within the text, itself. Luckily, we here at the United Nations Creepy Authors Guild have found a way of reading this hidden message, and we would like to share with you, the humble reader, what this underlying message is, but please understand the graphic nature of this message and the horrible possible outcomes if you are to follow its command: "Go out into nature, and stay there unto you die!" It is truly shocking. Benjamin Franklin, however, was anti-Emerson without even knowing it. His secret message from within the text was simply this, "Keep track of yourself, and simplicity follows." It seems to be apparent that Franklin was much more lax about his control over the masses, but his message is true for even today. Franklin promoted self control and staying within the boundaries of ease, but Emerson was much more about calling the folks to action. Honestly, I wish not as many people had been trapped in the works of Emerson because of the dreadful outcomes they have been known to produce.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Journal #20

I do not think it is that important to step away from society's normal routine because I will always come back to it, eventually. Besides, it is not possible to fully escape society because there are always people there with you. No matter what I do or where I go, there will always be some sort of trace of society because there is hardly anywhere we have not been. Also, I do not really want to get away from society because I like the hustle and bustle of the city. But, if I simply had to get away from everything, I think it would be beneficial because it is a time to be able to relax without the stress of daily life, which, by the way, is extremely hectic and pretty much just scary. Reflecting upon yourself is some pretty heavy stuff. To get some heavy stuff through your thoughts, you really need to concentrate on it, and what could be a better way of doing that than getting out of society? There are some times in life where you just need to escape, too. That is another good reason to go out to the wilderness or just to your place of tranquility. That is how you truly relax. You just need to find the place that makes a peace with the soul, which, by the way, is also extremely difficult. I do not actually know what else I can say about escaping from society. But, if I am still not at three-hundred and twenty-five words, I suppose I should continue writing something. Nature is so beautiful, and it has the amazing power of taking the mind off of everything going on in life. It is so simple and "down to earth" (not to be ironic) that it is no wonder that it is thought of as so relaxing. I just wish I did not have to go to school tomorrow but just spend the day outside. I really need some rest right now.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Journal #19

First of all, it is impossible to have a perfect country. There are too many people who always disagree with some sort of political issue. In other words, there is always someone who does not like your decision. But, if there were to be some way of having a perfect society in the United States, this is, I think, how I would want everything to be run. There should be one person in charge with the rest of the people giving enough input to be fair; however, the one person in charge should be the ending person. I mean that the "president" should pass all the laws, and every single citizen should be happy with the outcome. No one should fight over how something is written because everyone will eventually have to follow the rule. I really do not like how people always bash the president for the smallest things, so that would need to be eliminated in my perfect society. When a rule or law is put into effect, everyone needs to just abide by it. I do not care if you do not totally agree with it. The person in charge of everyone has said it will affect everyone. Also, the whole world really needs to use one type of currency. This whole inflation thing is destroying the economy. We need to quit borrowing money from people and quit giving free money to everyone else. It is no wonder why our country is in such an enormous debt. We owe like $40 billion to China alone because we continue to take their money just so we can give it to other countries for nothing in return. I hate America. There are so many people, too, that are just so stupid, so we should just get rid of all the stupid people. Maybe we can ship them out to Africa to live with the poor people in shanties. Basically, everyone needs to stop complaining about the way the country is being run. If everyone does that, no one will argue, and the country will be peaceful.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Poetry Explication - "Ballad of the Oysterman"

The literal meanings of the lines themselves and the overall meaning of the poem are very similar in this poem by Oliver Wendell Holmes because it is written as a dialogue with a story.

Literal Meaning:
There was a tall, young oysterman who lived by the river. He ran a shop on the bank, and his boat was just underneath it. A pretty woman lived on the opposite side of the river from him with her father, a fisherman. The oysterman was thinking about his love one day while watching her from afar. He saw her waving her handkerchief, as much as if to say, "I'm wide awake, young oysterman, and all the folks away." In a rush, the oysterman jumped up and thought I guess I'll leave the skiff at home, for fear that her parents should see; I read it in a story-book, that, for to kiss his dear, Leander swam to Hellespont, so I could swim this, here. And so, he swam across the river to reach his fair lady and to receive her beautiful kisses. But, suddenly, they heard the footsteps of the lady's father, so the oysterman quickly jumped back into the river to swim home. The old fisherman asked his daughter what the splashes were about, and the daughter replied, "'T was nothing but a pebble, sir, I threw into the water." Then, the father asked what it was paddling off so fast, and the daughter again protects the oysterman, saying it was a dolphin. The old fisherman tells her to fetch his harpoon, then, so they will eat it for dinner that night. The daughter had nothing to do but turn pale white. While trying to swim back home, the oysterman falls victim to a cramp and drowns in the current. Now, the oyster shop is commemorating the fallen boy and selling oysters to "mermaids down below."

Poetic Devices:
I suppose I could be redundant by saying that there is a lot of imagery, but that would be silly because the whole thing is a story about something that happened. It was written to be played in your head.

Figurative Meaning:
This hidden love does not endure because God gave lungs to humans, not gills. The poor boy only wanted to hold his dream in his arms, but he was not certain how her father would cope with it, so he tried to hide his love for her. When he thought he had the chance, it was tarnished, and he paid the ultimate price for his poor timing.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Protector

The cool breeze of fall blows through the town.
Kids come out to frolic in the street,
while parents dread the impending winter.
Winds grow in strength and sweeps the feet
out from under a small child. As he fell,
the wind began to swirl and beat
at the poor child. The cold rain shot out
and lifted the boy out of his small seat.

The boy had the face of terror and dread;
they always remember that day of the dead.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Poetry Explication - "Thanatopsis"

"Thanatopsis" is a poem written by William Cullen Bryant in the Romanticism time period. In it, Bryant, literally speaking, describes what is to follow. Bryant says that nature speaks to the people who love it. Nature is happy when they are happy and sad when they are sad. When death and sadness come into thoughts, go out to nature, where you will die. You were born of earth, so you will die of earth; this also means that since you were allowed to walk on the earth, everyone will now be allowed to walk on you, also. The roots of trees will take over what used to be your body. Therefore, you would not have died alone, and there could be no better resting place. You will be there with the wisest of the wise and the grandest of kings from all generations. The ocean, the rocks, the valleys, and the sun will be the scenery of your grave. The universe looks so sadly upon death, but death is inevitable. Go out into the wonder of nature and experience the death all around. You are going to die, and all of your friends are going to die. So, what if no one notices your death? The happy people will laugh and move on in life until their death; the young will grow old and die, and every being after them will follow. So, instead of dwelling on the impending death, live life to the fullest to be able to rest in peace. Literally, as was just stated, this sounds like a gloomy poem, but it is really not about the inevitable death in everyone's future. Imagery is vivid and colorful in "Thanatopsis." "The hills/ Rock-ribb'd and ancient as the sun,--the vales/ Stretching in pensive quietness between;/ The venerable woods; river that move/ In majesty..." (Bryant). His descriptions of nature being beautiful and majestic speak to his attitude toward nature. Bryant wants to celebrate nature, which is common among Romanticism writers. His descriptions also show that the poem has an underlying meaning, other than the predominant theme of death. Actually, Bryant is celebrating death because when we die, we will be surrounded by the beauty of nature.


Bryant, William C. "Thanatopsis." Poetry-Archive. Poetry-Archive.com, 2002. Web. 26 Oct. 2010. http://www.poetry-archive.com/b/thanatopsis.html.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Journal #17

Bonding with nature is hard, especially when I do not like or care about nature. So, instead, I think I want to make something up that sounds more interesting than some random information I might know about nature. Although, I do not really know what that information would be because I have never really thought about something like that. Anyway, I think I am going to tell a fictional story about an adventure I had in the woods. It was a long time ago (in a galaxy far, far away) that I last had a good nature walk, so I decided to relax in nature. The day was October 21, and I was becoming one with nature. At first, I thought it was just simply sort of odd that all the little forest creatures were following me, but then a fox came, followed by a coyote, an eagle, a mother black bear and her three cubs, and a small heard of elk. The only real clues I had were the occasional sounds of huffing and snorting from behind me. I was very good at listening and could distinguish sounds from others and place them with the correct owner. But, every time I tried to turn around to get a glimpse of all the perculiar animals, they were gone (sort of gone, I suppose, because they tried to hide behind trees and bushes, and six elk cannot all fit behind a bush, no matter how large that bush may be). So, I would turn around, and all the animals would come back out. It was like they already knew I was turning around before I really did. It was so weird. So, that is the story. Did you like it? I enjoyed writing it just for you because you are my favorite audience - the one that can be transposed into anyone who reads this journal post. So, now I am done with this post, and I hope you have a wonderful day (or night).

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Journal #16

This is my journal about my favorite (and least favorite) foods. My favorite food is probably Hamburger Helper, which is a magical combination of noodles, hamburger, and secret sauce (may also contain cheese). In fact, I am having my favorite food tonight for dinner, and I am so stoked. It does not have anything nasty like tomatoes or asparagus or liverwurst. I am a very picky eater, but I really like to eat because food is so yummy. I also really like spaghetti, and I like to eat chicken patties on a bun. Actually, chicken is delightful in general. And, there are so many things to make using chicken. Like I said, it can be put on a bun, or cooked on the grill just plain, or baked with crackers crumbled on it, or roasted whole, or fried. It is so versatile! And, chicken is one of the healthiest meats. I also really like Thanksgiving dinner because I love mashed potatoes, and I love stuffing, and gravy is the most perfect liquid binder available because it is so full of flavor and goes so well with everything. I am getting hungry, now. Actually, now that I think about it, I am a sucker for comfort food, like macaroni and cheese. It is so rich and cheesy and tender but full of texture simultaneously. I think I could eat macaroni and cheese for a solid year if I wanted to. But, that would probably not be too smart because I think I would get sick of it during that year-long period. A year is really long. Eating macaroni three times a day, that would be 1,095 meals of macaroni and cheese. That is a lot of noodles. There are probably like 300 macaroni noodle in each bowl, so there would be over 320,000 noodles entering my body over the course of a year. I like macaroni and cheese, but I am not sure about that much.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Journal #15

Well, personally, logic and reason are how I live. It is not really too possible to stumble yourself through life without thinking about what could be happening while you go along. However, apparently, there are some people who do not use logic or reason to make any sort of decision. None of them are very smart because they are unable to do what they want. In other words, there are a ton of stupid people, whom I am forced to live with. For instance, one of my partners for the "project" we are doing has gotten almost nothing done on time. He did not participate in making the list of seven virtues because he did not even have his own thirteen to give his input. Even if the descriptions were at the level of a second-grader, it would seem logical to do even a little bit of work on it. It might seem reasonable to help the group a little, and that is why I, personally, did what was assigned. However, since he does not care about me or my third partner, I guess he is not very reasonable. I really hate people in general, actually. It might be a little bit better if people would think about the stupid things they are saying, but luckily, people are stupid because no one understands that their sentences do not make sense. It seems like it could be logical to think about the stupid things people say, but I suppose it is pretty hard to pay attention to what you say. It might be deemed reasonable to consider the thoughts of other people to be personal, but, honestly, I do not care about the feelings of other people. For the amount I care, they can all just live by themselves under ground for their stupidity. So, now I need to have about twenty more words, but that is really everything that I feel needs to be said about the lack of logic or reason in this world.

Monday, October 18, 2010

"Common Sense" Criticism

So, Thomas Paine could just have easily made this paper about three sentences by saying something along the lines of, "I hate all people because they are stupid and make stupid rules, and it would be so much easier if everyone would just have some sense about them." Obviously, because of time constraints and my general lack of wanting to read the entire article, I only read the section that was assigned to me in class. In just that part, Paine is destroying the King of England because he is creating ridiculous rules and enforcing them in unfair ways, usually benefitting himself or his friends. "This shall be the manner of the king that shall reign over you; he will take your sons and appoint them for himself for his chariots, and to be his horsemen, and some shall run before his chariots and he will appoint him captains over thousands and captains over fifties, and will set them to ear his ground and to read his harvest, and to make his instruments of war, and instruments of his chariots; and he will take your daughters to be confectionaries and to be cooks and to be bakers and he will take your fields and your olive yards, even the best of them, and give them to his servants; and he will take the tenth of your seed, and of your vineyards, and give them to his officers and to his servants and he will take the tenth of your men servants, and your maid servants, and your goodliest young men and your asses, and put them to his work; and he will take the tenth of your sheep, and ye shall be his servants, and ye shall cry out in that day because of your king which ye shall have chosen." (Paine). Do you see it now? Paine is complaining that the kings are dictoral and completely one-sided - that is, he is always on his own side. Living in a time like that would certainly upset me as well, so I really cannot blame Thomas Paine for writing this. However, I can certainly blame him for making it the full twenty one thousand, five hundred words it is. Honestly, I think the man could have gotten his point across just as well by limiting himself to maybe one or two thousand words, but this style is part of the time period because, for some reason, Rationalists decided it be important to overly explain every tiny detail. As I pointed out before, Paine clearly uses plenty of support for his ideas because of the stories and accounts he gives with each point. Amidst the quote mentioned earlier is a story of the Bible character, Samuel, where he is spreading the word of his Lord. Connecting to the quotation, also, is the idea that God is, too, against monarchial government. In fact, Paine directly conveys this idea by saying, "That the Almighty hath here entered his protest against monarchial government is true, or the scripture is false." (Paine). So, apparently, just in the section I read, Paine displayed two ways of support: by blatantly saying what must be said and by supporting what should be said with a more or less "real" account of the matter.


Works Cited

Paine, Thomas. "Thomas Paine's 'Common Sense' - Text Version." Archiving Early America. Ed. Don Vitale. 1996. Online. 19 Oct. 2010. .

Thursday, October 14, 2010

"Franklin's Autobiography and the American Dream" Reflection

Actually, I thought the article was fairly interesting. Every single part of it was well thought out and clearly organized. Lemay did a wonderful job writing this criticism. Despite its extreme length, I was very happy to read "Franklin's Autobiography and the American Dream." Lemay gave both very detailed information and some information that should probably be deemed unnecessary, such as "Most sentences in Franklin's Autobiography are unrevised..." (Lemay). This has nothing to do with the rest of the paragraph as he goes on to say "and he carefully reworked it," (Lemay) which is a clear redundancy. The style of writing is also extremely advanced. Lemay uses many words with more than just five letters, sometimes spelling out such words as "obscurity," "theological," and "voluntarism." I, for one, did not know the definition of "voluntarism" until i looked it up - the theory that the will rather than the intellect is the ultimate principle of reality. Lemay was also not one to skimp on any details. Everything he thought about saying would come out on paper, it seemed. For instance, it seemed necessary for Lemay to state that "Franklin's Autobiography is the first great book in American literature." (Lemay). If that is not a good way to start the paper, I do not know what is. Even the details not pertaining to the meat and bones of the paper are still, naturally, included. Also, that statement in itself is quite bold, despite its placement and reasoning. Yes, it certainly does promote Franklin's Autobiography, but it simultaneously puts down pretty much every single other book written before it. By saying that it is the first "great" book, Lemay is saying that he is not a big fan of all the other books written before this one, including, possibly, European writers who wrote about America and in American styles. Many of those European writers could have been writing hundreds of years before Franklin, leaving room for a whole lot of books to be written in that time. Also, I really liked how Lemay described the American Dream because, like I said before, he did not leave any room for misinturpretations (yes, that is a big word). His description of the American Dream really helps readers better understand the American Dream as it is according to Franklin. Unfortunately, however, Lemay's description is too long to fully describe in a five hundred word blog. Once again, Lemay wrote this essay to be extremely informative, but also very dull and monotonous. He explained the American Dream in his own terms and in Franklin's terms in a total of five aspects. Each aspect bounced off of the last, but they were all distinct in explanation. It is quite amazing that Lemay is able to sit down and write that entire thing mainly because he was interested in Franklin. I am happy to be enthusiastic, but he took it to the "know-it-all" level. If he ever writes something like this again, Lemay needs to concentrate a little more on keeping the audience's attention by changing up the tone every once in a while. I got really bored really fast, but I still certainly learned a whole lot.


Works Cited


Lemay, J.A. Leo. "Franklin's Autobiography and the American Dream." InThe Renaissance Man in the Eighteenth Century. Los Angeles: William Andrews Clark Memorial Library, 1978. Quoted as "Franklin's Autobiography and the American Dream." in Bloom, Harold, ed. The American Dream, Bloom's Literary Themes. New York: Chelsea Publishing House, 2009. Bloom's Literary Reference Online. Facts On File, Inc. (accessed October 14, 2010).

Journal #14

This is the Declaration of Freedom. I am a citizen, so I should be able to say whatever I want in school. Why is it that teachers put so much pressure on students by giving them so much homework and so many tests. No one likes tests or quizes because, for the most part, they are entirely about memorizing something the night before just to forget again as soon as the test has been taken. It seems I should be able to pick and choose what I want to do, and that includes skipping school whenever I want. Actually, going to school all year long would basically solve the problem because it would give me more evenly spaced breaks that are not just three days here and there. Those kinds of breaks are really just slightly elongated weekends. Students are not quite able to catch up on sleep, but they still have to think about doing homework with only one extra day to do it. We should be free to say what we want in school. We should be able to miss classes or talk a little bit in class. A lot of teachers now are so hung up on the class being completely silent, and it really makes the class much more boring. That is the real reason students fail classes; they are unable to pay attention for the whole period because it is so monotonous. If teachers would change up their teaching styles every oncde in a while, I think more children would be happier in school and more motivated in class. We need to be free to think what we want about the other people in school. For example, there are obviously many teachers whom students do not exactly respect because they are not good teachers. But, the people in charge of discipline are not as easy about these thoughts because they are apparently "mean and rude," even though they are actually entirely true. There are really a lot more stupid people in a school than one might think.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Journal #13

Homecoming week is pretty dumb in general because everyone hates each other and expects everyone to participate even though all the days are really bad and boring. It is just a week of everyone complaining about how no one cares about the class and how dumb everyone else is for not dressing up for the day. It is really annoying how all the "cool kids" think they can just yell at all the other people because they think the whole homecoming week is stupid. It is fine to be excited about your school, but you are actually just being annoying. They really need to think of better themes for each day because they were very uncreative this year. We need toga day! That would be pretty funny. Or, like SHS does, we could have a senior citizen day where everyone dresses up as old people. Things like that are able to be used in very clever ways. For example, there could be floral wreath hats and chariots in toga day, and you could get props for senior citizen day like an oxygen tank or a cane or a walker or wheelchair. See, for cowboy day, what can I really bring? How about a fake horse? That is creative. There is not much diversity in cowboy day; plus, not many people need to try to dress differently anyway because three quarters of the school is already a bunch of hick farmers. Then, also, Thursday's "class color day" and Friday's "spirit day" could be combined to leave room for a better day to come in. Also, hat day is getting really, really old. I have seen everyone's hats, and I actually do not care about them anymore. It is not funny. It is just dumb. The whole school needs to calm down about spirit week, especially because our football team is garbage anyway. I do not care about them, and I am sure they return the favor.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Journal #12

Ok, so apparently when I started typing this blog in class, my computer decided to hate me, and when I got about half way through and Mr. Langley told us to stop, it just really did not want to save the blog I had worked so hard on. Thanks, Blogger. :) I really appreciate getting to do more work than is necessary. But, that is fine; it is not like this week has sucked already or anything. Working with a partner is something I usually do not like at all. There is one person who does all the work and one person who sits there and talks to the other people around them, leaving the first said person to pick up the slack for the second. I usually get stuck with the job of the first one, where I get to do the entire project and share half the credit with the idiot partner. On rare occasions, however, I get to work in groups. Groups I can handle. There is more than one person to pick up the slack, but there is hardly ever any to pick up because the other group members tend to gang up on that person and yell at him or her to start working instead of being their normal self (off track and essentially useless to the collaborative efforts of the group). I am also fine if my partner is someone who I know will at least try to help me. Since the majority of the school is only there because the government says they have to be there, the majority of the school consequently does not care to try very hard. But, in these few cases, I get a partner who is not part of the majority of the school. I get the "smart kid," and we split up the task to divide and conquer. So, there is not much else I want to say about working with partners because most of the rest would be calling out names, and that is not something I really want to do on the internet because I do not know who might read these. But, trust me, there are many students who are totally stupid and I really, really hate. I actually just do not like people in general.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Journal #11

Well, I suppose it is good to have a set of ethics and values to keep your life regulated. I am not entirely sure if I have one of these sets, and if I do, I sure hope someone tells me about it before it bites me in the butt. Some people have very strict values, like the people from the Puritan and Pilgrim time period. They were told to live in cooperation with each other and practice a certain religion. Nowadays, however, America does not have a standard set of ethics that everyone lives by. Instead, each family is allowed to make their own standards for each member to live by. That is the purpose of the family living together. The parents are around the children enough to raise them correctly according to the morals they have grown up with and cultivated themselves. Some of these morals include being polite to peers and elders, keeping hands to yourself, not backtalking, and respecting another person's personal space and boundaries. But, as I mentioned, each parent or set of parents is allowed to create their own laws for the children to grow up and abide by. Some parents are very strict to following these rules, but some parents are also too distracted to care about enforcing their own rules. When they are out in public, the parents seem totally uncaring about how stupic their kids are acting. That is the one that I really hate. I know my parents would have at least taken me back out to the car. But these parents just let their kids do whatever they want, and it really reflects on the parents. It is as if they have no control over their kids, which is not true, but they also do not care that they have no control over their kids. It is pretty annoying when a little kid is running around in front of you in line at Taco Bell and jumping on the counter when the dad is yelling her name but not acting on it whatsoever. If you want to even instill a set of rules, please, do some work to enforce them. You really look like a fool.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Journal #10

Science and religion has been a heated argument topic for a very long time, now. Personally, I stand on the side with science because I like to have things back up a statement. You cannot tell me that something is real and after I ask how you know it, say "because" or "it just is." That does not help me determine if it is really true or just something stupid you made up (or someone else made up). I think there needs to be proof of a "god" before I can even give a fair, opinionated response. I do not like, as I said in the last blog, I think, that parents are giving this information about God to their chilldren and telling them it is factual and true. They were raised to believer that, and that is why they say that. They have no reason to say it, other than because of the ways they were taught back in the days when religion was okay in public schools. Nowadays, teachers are not allowed to say anything about God in class. So, not being told anything differently about the matter, the students continue to follow their parents' model by becoming Christian, usually, from birth and baptised before they are old enough to make any kinds of decisions. That is why I do not like religion - no one really knows any better. That is true, of course, unless you have parents who are not heavily Christian, like mine. That does not mean that I do not gelieve in God because my mother does not. No, in fact, that just says that it is fine not to believe in God, if I do so choose. But, still, if you are able to show me sufficient evidence of an "Almighty power" and of Heaven or Hell, I would gladly consider converting. But, since all of those things are just imaginative, I have to assume they are not real. As far as I know, once I die, my body is going to sit in the ground and decompose to be part of the soil. That can be proven. Have you ever tried to find a body of a thousand-year-old man who was given a normal burial. I will give you a hint. Do not try it. It will be impossible to find because he is no longer a body. He has decomposed into nothing.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Puritan/Pilgrim Literary Period Analysis (Presentation)



Almost all of the Puritan/Pilgrim period writing was very boring, and I did not find myself being intrigued by anything, really. That is, until I read The Crucible. That was really good. It was a pretty easy book to read, and it gave a lot of information about the witch trials. It was very clear that Arthur Miller did quite enough research to even begin writing his play. Most of the short stories were very dull, like Mary Rowlandson's memoir. I did not find myself wanting to know anything about what she did when she was spending some time with the Indians. Frankly, I do not care about her. It is still an important period in American history, and I understand that, but I wish it did not have to be such a boring period of our history.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Journal #9

I do not like organized religion. I think the whole thing is just silly. There is so much pressure on Americans to have some sort of religion because other kids are raised in Christian families whose parents were heavily Christian before them. The children now just think everyone has to be Christian because they do not know any better. Also, how many sects of Christianity are there? Like seventy or eighty? Yeah, that is what I thought. What are the differences among any of them? Does anyone really know? Is the basis not that God is good? See, I do not think like that. I think that, since I grew up in a "less religion-based" home, I should be free to make my own decisions. And I decided not to have a real religion. Everyone has been fed crap from their parents mouths about sinning and how you are going to go to Hell if you screw up just one thing. I do not like that. If God is so gracious, why would he damn someone to eternal suffering? Also, you know, who is to say Jesus was real? Can someone post a comment with a link to real, scientific evidence of an actual "Jesus Christ" from that exact time period roughly two thousand years ago? I think not, good sir. And, some religions are just silly. There are so many different gods and idols. Buddhism has Buddha; Islam has Muhammad; Judaism believes Jesus was a person but had no Godly possessions. If there wants to be any kinds of organized religion, there needs to be one religion for everyone or no religion for anyone. So, basically, that is why I really do not like religion, but I am tolerant of everyone's religions. And, I also kind of (like) arguing with other people about religion. It is sort of a guilty pleasure.. But it should really be fine because not many people care about my view on religion anyway...

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Journal #8

The video, "The The Impotence of Proofreading," was very funny. The guy did a very good job just staying on it and running through it. Sadly, however, he was making fun of something that happens to many people, I am sure. He is right that spell check catches most mistakes, but it does certainly make larger, much stupider, mistakes. Also, it does not run through each sentence to see if it even makes slight amounts of sense. All of spell check's job is to find errors in spelling. I could still have a sentence like, "Tacos is good on the nights Friday," and spell check would not catch any of it, despite it sounding like a retarded three-year-old monkey's writing. So, now it is late at night, and I still do not want to do any more homework, but I suppose I probably should. But, I just watched that clip for the second time, and it is just as funny as the first time. The guy did a wonderful job of presenting his material. It kept my attention the entire time, which actually surprised me because it was more than thirty seconds long. He did not stutter, which made it sound more realistic or, at least, plausible. There is not much more to say about the video, honestly. I guess I could just ramble on about the same things I already said, but that would not be too much fun. It was simply hilarious, even including the possibly innappropriate moments. I am glad Mr. Langley included this topic as one we could write about because I was not liking the other ones. I wish we could just make up a story about the topic he gives us, sort of along the lines of the one about the animal characters teaching some sort of life lesson. I do not really remember what my story was about, but I do remember enjoying riting it. I am done.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Journal #7

I do not follow any superstitions, and I really do not know anything about many superstitions. All I do know is that walking under a ladder is considered bad luck and so is a black cat walking in front of your path. Then, there is the saying, "if you step on a crack, you will break your mother's back." I do not like superstitions, either, because a lot of them are based on me hurting myself, and they do not make sense to me, being someone who takes things and makes sense out of them. I think the superstitions were just made up by accident and coincidence when someone happened to be walking under a ladder, for example, when it fell, and the ladder crushed them to death (possibly). But something like the black cat crossing you path is probably something about the plain creepiness of little black animals. But, what can a cat really do to harm me when it is just walking in front of me. Then, there is also the superstition about breaking a mirror and getting seven years of bad luck. I think this was probably started by someone breaking a mirror and cutting themselves on it. It was, most likely, just unfortunate circumstances that led to many of the creations of these superstitions. But, again, how would I know how any of these, or pretty much anyting, came about. I mean, if I do not know the backgrounds of these superstitions, how can I know who does and who can be a trustworthy source of information about them. Obviously, I cannot. So, it could be possible that these "superstitions" were just sayings that sounded funny of different or rhymed that caught on and stuck in the language of today, which, by the way, has been changed so many times, I do not think anyone really knows what anything means anymore. Since people can make new theories in science, maybe people can also change the meanings of words in English.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Journal #6

Well, false accusations, sworn under law of the court, is a felony, punishable by, I believe, time in prison and probably a fine. Also, most of the times these cases come up, it started as a small argument and escalated to an all out screaming match. Since the people are just yelling, there is not really any time for friendship between them. That is another very likely outcome - losing their friendship. And, if you do not lose their friendship, you will still feel remorse for your actions later on down the road. There is no telling what might happen to your once called friend. He/she could end up paying for your decision, even if he/she did not do anything wrong. That can weigh down the heart of both parties. It really makes you think about what you could be doing to that person's life. But, also, there are tons of things that could happen. For instance, maybe the world is actually nonsense where it really does rain cats and dogs and pigs can fly. Maybe some sort of weird tangent will form from me deciding to blame some innocent soul. There is absolutely no telling what kind of anything could happen after accusing someone else for something I know I did. Or, as another possibility, meybe it could end up being a good thing for both of us. Maybe, somehow, prison is a good thing for him, and I am the one who gets a reward for turning in the criminal, even though it is not the right criminal because I know I am the correct criminal. Maybe something crazy could happen to us both, and we both end up dying. Anything possibly imaginable could potentially result from anything anyone does. So, honestly, I do not really like this topic. I would appreciate story-creating topics like the one that tought a moral by using animals as characters. But, as it is now, I have not really enjoyed these topics you have given us.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Journal #5

First of all, I have never been seriously grounded or in much trouble (because I am a good boy) and therefore do not know much about these kinds of punishments. However, I also think that most of these punishments are extremely fair as a modern twenty-first century punishment. These seem fine with me because if someone is so stupid to have their parents think about these kinds of punishments, then they deserve the punishments to be rained down upon them. I do not think the kids should be able to complain about it because it was, after all, their own fault their parents are giving them these punishments. I also think the parents should not get carried away with these punishments (like washing out the child's mouth with soap), like one of my friend's mother did to him when he was younger. I am sure this was not very pleasant for him, but I think his mother really liked it. In fact, she did it to him so many times, he once got sick from eating too much of the soap. Then, he threw up in the living room on the carpet, and his mother had to clean it up (talk about irony). But, today, it really seems as if kids and teenagers, mostly, rely on cell phones to live. It looks like it takes the place of eating in their daily routine because it is so important, like eating because it gives energy. But with their cell phones, some students at our school bring them to class and are even bold enough to try to use them during class. Is it really necessary, people? Do you need to update your Facebook status this second? So, also to help with school work, I think it could be very suitable to take away a child's cell phone because they seem to be a nieussance, and, honestly, it bothers me just as much as the teachers, and yes, we all know the teachers can tell when someone has out their cell phone. It is really not that hard.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Journal #4

So, there have been a couple major trips I or my family have taken. Basically, there is really just one that stick out the most. The summer after seventh grade, I was readying myself for a great year at the top of the school, and what is a better way of preparing than taking a nice, long vacation to Hawaii? We left home somewhere at around seven in the morning to drive to the Lambert - St. Louis International Airport. The flight was scheduled to leave at 10:40, but due to many stupid (and probably lazy) people, there was an hour delay, so we ended up leaving at 11:45. The plane ride was long and unforgiving, especially sitting in the tiny coach seats. Well, at least they served lunch, which, by the way, was seven dollars for a ham and cheese sandwich. We next landed in Los Angeles and boarded the new plane to fly out to the islands. The layover in Los Angeles was so long; it must have been at least an hour and a half. The flight from Los Angeles to Honolulu was non-stop (obviously) and was a solid nine hours. That was the biggest killer because this one was even longer and more unforgiving, still sitting in the tiny coach seats. It was possibly the most boring trip on an airplane I have ever been through. Basically, all I did was watch a movie, eat dinner, and sit in my seat, desperately attempting to drift off into sleep, unsuccessfully. But, however, it was so worth it. Hawaii has the nicest climate, such beautiful beaches, and some of the best snorkeling in the world, which he happily participated in. I am not really sure what else I want to say, other than the amazing-ness of Hawaii. I think I might enjoy living there if the tourists stayed away. When I can, I am totally going to take the journey out there again because it was so awesome.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Journal #3

Being a hostage could be one of two things. It would either be really awesome because I would be getting so much attention, or it would be really scary, and I would probably cry a lot and beg for the people to release me. Most likely, the second option would show itself more prevalent. I think I would scream for a while, and after realizing these attempts are futile, I would start an attempt at negotiating with the people. Although, I suppose I do not have too many things they could want or need in return for my freedom. I do not have too much money, and I do not have very many nice thing like watches and other fancies. Then, after seeing my release nowhere in the near future, I think I would kind of get used to the fact of the matter and go along with a new sort of normal routine. Also, you know, I could be the hastage taker. That would be really difficult, but I think I might be able to pull it off. Or, even better yet, I could be the guy who comes in with his super awesome speaking abilities and saves the hostage with his magic skills of negotiation. Or, still another option, I could be the person who goes into the situation and has to pull out the hostage, like a guy on a SWAT team. That would be pretty awesome, but I also think I would die pretty quickly in that job. Knowing me, my gun would misfire, causing my team member to get shot in the back and die, leaving the blame on me for mishandling the weapon, so I would probably end up in jail, instead of putting other people in it. See, there are many different sides to the hostage situation, and honestly, I guess I would go down without a fight in pretty much every one of them. Oh, also, you should not nominate me for this job because of the same reasons.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Journal #2

Miguel, a kind and generous muskrat, was walking home from a long day of being a muskrat, when he stumbled over a rock in the middle of the road. As turning back, a small voice chirped from somewhere behind him. Miguel heard the voice again and looked down to see the rock slowly moving across the street. Being the nice muskrat he is, Miguel picked up the rock and moved it to the other side of the road. Miguel looked at the rock a little closer and noticed that it was not a rock at all; instead, he saw the small head of a turtle popping out of the rock. Miguel introduced himself to his new friend. The turtle looked up at his captor and yelled at the muskrat to put him down. Miguel, having his feelings hurt by such a cruel little turtle, dropped him to the ground on the other side of the road and ran home crying. After a few more hours of slow, laborious walking by the turtle, he got to thinking about his interaction with Miguel, the muskrat. He decided that the next day, he would give a conversation to the passing muskrat. So, the next day, Miguel came down the same road as the turtle waited for him in the middle. As the muskrat was passing by, the turtle piped up again, and, being the nice muskrat he is, Miguel stopped to give the turtle another chance. Trevor the turtle introduced himself first, and they instantly picked up a conversation. Miguel skooped up the tiny turtle and took him down the road a little way to his house. He set him down on the couch and got him a drink. Trevor looked at his kind host and asked, "Miguel, why do you still like me? We got off to a horrible start, but you pressed on. Why?" The muskrat looked down at the turtle with a slight grin on his face, laughed, and looked into the fireplace.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Journal #1

Native American history is not the largest topic in the back of my head. Actually, it is quite small, very small, extremely small. There are some things I know like that the Native people were run out of town by new settlers. Apparently, their land was overrun by newcomers, and it forced the natives to move to some new locations. I, however, believe that the people were sort of asking for it. I mean, they hoarded the land for so long, and they should have expected someone to come take over their land because it is, after all, so luscious and fertile and willing to grow sustainable crops such as maize. Maize, by the way, is basically corn. Native Americans grew maize to harvest and feed the family or the village if necessary. Also, it is commonly known that Native Americans lived in teepees, but this is not exactly true. Many people did certainly live in teepees, but most of that living was done during travel since it is such a convenient and easy way of setting up a good shelter. A lot of Native Americans had permanent housing on a "lot," commonly shared with other family members, but there were also some who used teepees as permanent housing. Native Americans from northernmost locations most likely did not use teepees as they would become extremely cold. Instead, the Inuits, for example, came up with a form of shelter involing the surroundings. They cut large blocks of ice and stacked them to create a small dome, then packed the cracks with snow. This system, although sounding totally insane, was actually extremely useful. It provided shelter from the winds of the north, and made a cozy feeling within the people. There was also a ton of hunting back down in the plains. Bear, buffalo, and small game like raccoons, squirrels, rabbits, and birds were hunted for meat, hides, and even bones. They skinned the animal, cleaned it, ate it, then used the remains to form weapons from the bones, like arrow heads, and used the pelts of the animals to make blankets and flooring for their homes.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Symbolism

Symbolism is an immense part of Fahrenheit 451. Bradbury, for example, wrote the entire book as a symbol of the phoenix, in which life must rise from the ashes of its death. The symbols make connections to other places in the book as well. The first two sections of the novel, "the Hearth and the Salamander" and "the Sieve and the Sand," are symbolic of the firemen and the impossibility in what they are attempting by trying to rid the world of books. Some of the other symbols were not as blunt and forward as those. For instance, mirrors, at the end of the book, are symbolic of how humanity should be acting. Granger tells the group that they should build a mirror factory to take a long, hard look at themselves.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

And After...

Now that this whole ordeal about these blogs is over, I feel it necessary to make a post that is not at least 325 words long. Instead, it will be short, sweet, and to the point. The Old Man and the Sea honestly was short but pretty boring. Basically, this guy went out to sea to catch a fish, found one, struggled with it for, like, three days, reeled it in, then lost all the meat on it to sharks on the way back to shore. :( A pretty simple plot turns into a hundred-page novel. The Grapes of Wrath was way too long for me, and not enough happened. I'll just leave it at that. Fahrenheit 451 was probably my favorite of the three, well really only two were options, books that I read this summer. It was about this Guy who searched the city for himself, only to self-destruct in the end and be forced to rebuild. This is a different kind of story, one that I do not ever remember seeing in any other book. Thank you, someone, that these blogs are over. This was probably the longest project I have ever completed. Someone told me this would be about the same length as something like a 30-page normal paper. That is so much writing, it isn't even funny. But, I'm glad I finished, and I'm glad I don't have to think about it anymore. I wish you farewell. :D

Fahrenheit 451: Final Thoughts

Overall, Fahrenheit 451 was an easy read. It moved along nicely and did not spend too much time on one subject like The Grapes of Wrath. It had an interesting plot and a great cast as my last blog entry explained. I liked the story about how, in the end, Montag was able to rebirth the world, it seemed. I like Ray Bradbury. He did a good job with this novel. It was interesting that he killed off Clarisse because that really messed with my mind. I did not see that coming at all, but it made me get more into the book. The enthusiasm necessary to read The Grapes of Wrath just plain was not there for me. That was the most difficult book ever to get through. This one, however, had good plot turns and suspense which helped me get through it much more easily. Word choice in this book also played a huge role. I do not remember too many big words or phrases that tripped me up. Everything basically flowed from the opening line to the final word. Montag was a real, not down to Earth kind of guy (haha, no pun intended) and a serious headcase. He was not mischievous, but rather wide open with what he intended on doing. He would go out and pretty much announce his plans to the world, and then he was surprised when everything bad started happening. He was also kind of stupid, in general. He was lackadaisical in motion and redundant in thought, considering that he rarely thought things through. Instead, he was a go-to kind of guy, and by that, I mean he was a go-to-somewhere-and-do-whatever-I-want kind of guy (again, no pun intended). I kind of liked that in him, despite it almost leading to his ultimate downfall. It was amazing that he was able to get away, but I suppose there would have to be sort of suitable end to his long journey. It was just too bad it was not death.

Farhrenheit 451: Thoughts - Part II

I really liked the reality of the characters in Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451. They were symbolic in nature and represented different sides of real life. Guy Montag is a normal man, until he meets this girl who totally changes his outlook on everything, even himself. He is full of confusion and leads himself into situations that require quick thinking; not everything he does is well thought out like in some other books. He acts mostly on impulse, like the nature of most human beings in real life. Then, there is Mildred, the caring, devoted, and loving wife of Guy Montag. She is a sweet woman who is always dedicated to her life partner. Ha. Not. Mildred has one of the most turn-around kinds of personalities imaginable. She loves the soap opera, seems fascinated by books, which are illegal, yells at Montag for not doing what she says, and finally turns him in to the firemen for having the illegal books. She is probably the closest thing to an antagonist in this novel as anyone. That would be true if there was not Captain Beatty. Beatty is what I think of as a complete fool. He seems to care about Montag as more than just a co-worker judging by the speech he gives Montag. But he is also the sort of person who is hard to read. He also seems sort of insane. He has been working as a fireman for quite some time if he is the captain, but he also apparently had a strong relationship with books at one point. He knows an awful lot about the big no-no, but he is nearly afraid to show his love for books, and I am not really sure why. I guess it would revoke his job title if someone found out. Then, finally, there is Clarisse McClellan. Clarisse is quite the oddball. She is so much different than society allows, but she likes the way she is. She feels happy with her life and asks the most difficult questions at times. I think Clarisse was my favorite character partly because she was so mysterious, like her disappearance. Her presence in Montag's life sparked a change in thought for him, and it really started opening doors for him to climb through.

Fahrenheit 451: Thoughts - Part I

What happened to Clarisse? Where did she go? I really liked her. She was different than everyone else, and that made her stick out as in important character. Why did she have to get killed off? All she wanted was to know more about the world? Is that such a crime? Oh, yeah, I forgot, it is. This entire society without books is messed up. Homes are fireproof but can still burn down; firemen start fires; books are illegal; people's jobs make them go insane; no one is allowed to ask questions; people are silenced for moving against the current. The fireproof homes sound beneficial, but nothing else in that list seems right. Also, I do not think, just because books are banned, any of this will ever happen in the real world. Even if it were to happen, I also do not think the government would start raining nuclear warheads on the civilians. The city as a whole was not doing any wrong; it was mainly Montag. What kind of idiots are unable to catch a criminal who is on foot and alone in a futuristic society where televisions are enormous and cars are allowed to go super fast. It seems like someone would be able to find him fairly easily and, so long as the police force is not as stupid as Captain Beatty who handed his own death to Montag, alert the police to his whereabouts. Everything about this book is wrong. However, I really enjoyed reading it. It was pretty suspenseful throught to the very end, and it had an enticing set of characters who seemed very realistic and lifelike. Montag had a real human side because of all the misunderstanding in his life and misguidance he gives himself. He is so confused by what is happening all around him that it seems he will not climb out of the hole. But, like every good protagonist, he is somehow able to make one final run for the exit, just in time, to save his life and restart everything.

Fahrenheit 451: Mildred Montag - Part II

Really, Mildred? Did you really turn in your husband? Did you actually just do that to him? I thought you were enjoying reading those books and learning new things; were you not? How could you do that to such a feeble man? How could you betray the trust of the man whom you pledged yourself to for better or worse? You should have been able to see him deteriorating in front of your eyes. I thought I knew you better than that, Mildred. What did you accomplish by doing that to your one, true companion? He saved your life, you know! You were just about to leave the world forever, and this nice man came to your rescue and saved your life. You disgust me, Mildred. But, enough of me complaining about the awful character that is Mildred Montag and how I do not like her after that horrible act she did unto her husband, such a good man put into unfortunate circumstances causing him to crack under the pressure of living. Honestly, he should have been the one to attempt suicide. Okay, now I am actually done. Mildred is quite the character. She hates her real life and tries to escape it by hiding herself in the parlor and drowning her own sorrows with the sorrows of her favorite soap opera. She is surprised when Guy reveals his stash of books he has kept hidden from her, but come on, anyone could have seen that coming from eleven miles away. She really cannot be that stupid. She is also a character of mistrust and illusion when she proves that she is not a true friend and rats out Guy for having the books. She does not let Guy live his own way; instead, she expects him to live her way. I am seriously doubting if there is a heart under that chest of hers. I really just do not like her. She is not a nice lady.

Fahrenheit 451: End of a World

According to some sort of mythology, the noble phoenix is a bird of legend. A phoenix is said to die in one life in a massive ball of fire, only to be reborn from the ashes of its former body. Illustrating this idea perfectly is Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451 in which the world ends under the power of nuclear proportions and is forced to be reborn. At the end of Fahrenheit 451, Guy Montag happens across a group of wanderers who have been memorizing books in preperation for the apocalyptic end of mankind. They know it will be coming, but the question remains in when. Their answer is given with the arrival of this newcomer, Guy Montag, who brings with him destruction in the form of bombs on the city. These bombs are a last ditch effort to rid the world of the illegal books by the government and the firemen. These bombs not only accomplish the goal of completely annihilating the books, but they also wipe out most of the population of the city. Luckily, there is a small and brave group of poeple, the homeless men and now their new compadre, Montag, who are getting ready to rebuild society in the shape they want. This shape, left for the reader to assume, is most likely one including books as a source of knowledge and joy, since there is some fun left in reading and there are some people who still possess the knowledge of the once written words. This rebirth, of sorts, can easily be compared to the rebirth of the phoenix. From within the deepest, darkest depths of the begotten, there will rise a new form, a form of grace and subtlety to continue the journey of its last counterpart in hopes of better life. The phoenix is supposed to rebirth from its ashes in a new and improved fashion, one that could be in beauty or strength. Just like the bird, the men of the story are to remake everything from the ground up and refurbish something to make it better, possibly, in my opinion, to include books in every home again.

Fahrenheit 451: Summary - Burning Bright

Okay, first of all. I know I ended the last entry with Montag's house burning down. This is so not true, but it would have been so much more epic if it had been true. That would be a suiting end to the book; just kind of and "in your face!" to Montag. "Burning Bright" is the title given to the third and final section of Fahrenheit 451. It is so called because of the numerous instances of fire in the section. It starts with Guy Montag on the way to his home on an alarm call. When he arrives at home, he sees Mildred heading out of the house with all her things packed up in suticases, and Guy is led to assume that she was the one who alerted the firemen about the books. Beatty leads Montag into the house and gives him a flamethrower, which he uses, not for the intended purpose, but to scorch his long time friend and mentor, Captain Beatty. Montag had two options: option one was to destroy everything he had worked for in his home; option two was to destroy everything he had worked for from inside him. He chose to destroy everything inside himself by killing Beatty. After murdering his boss, Guy runs out into his backyard and digs up the four books he had also been hiding in the ground. The firehound races up onto Montag and injects his leg with something to make it go completely numb. But, just like he did with his last problem, Montag turns the flamethrower on it and gets it off his leg. He runs from his house as news helicopters and another mechanical dog track him. he ends up going to a co-worker's home to hide the books in his house and calls an alert to the house to draw some attention away from himself and onto this poor, unknowing, innocent man. Then, he runs to Faber's house, where Faber tells him to follow the railroad tracks, and he should meet a group of people. Guy runs down to a river and jumps in, hoping it will mask his scent trail from the dogs that could still be chasing him. Montag floats downstream for a while until he floats ashore. He meets the group of homeless men, and their leader introduces himself to Montag as Granger. he tells Montag that the group is memorizing books so they will be able to rebuild society when the world ends. Shortly thereafter, bombs are dropped all over the city, and the city is no more. The group then walks up the river to renew life and hopefully be reborn like the phoenix is said to do.

Fahrenheit 451: Summary - The Sieve and the Sand

The second section of Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451, "the Sieve and the Sand," receives its name from a childhood memory of Montag's. He remembers himself at the beach, trying with no prevail to fill a sieve with sand and crying because the job is not possible. It begins with the Montags continuing their desperate reading in the hall of their home. Guy is thinkin gabout Clarisse and why she was the way she was. He keeps on thinking and remembers and old English professor he once met in the park who had given Montag his telephone number, and he tries to give the man a call in search of some information on the Bible he found in the woman's house. But, the feisty old man does thinks this question is too upfront and thinks he is being tricked into confessing a possession of books, and he quickly and abruptly hangs up the phone. Mildred goes back to the parlor to wtch some more television, and Guy catches a subway to head over to professor Faber's house with the Bible. While on the train, Montag is distracted by an advertisement and waves around the Bible for all the passengers to see and yells at them for looking. Frightened, Montag hurredly steps off the train at the next stop and walks the rest of the way to Faber's house. Inside the house, Montag tries convincing Faber to make a copy of the Bible for him. Faber joins Montag's plan and gives Montag a two-way radio ear piece. montag returns to his home and has a small conversation with Mildred and her friends. During the conversation, like an idiot, Montag becomes angered at the people for their shallow behavior and ridiculous viewpoints and takes out a book of poetry to read to them all. The group has mixed reactions as one woman breaks down and cries from the beauty of the poem, while another yells at Montag about the poem's evil. The following day, Montag returns to work and hands Captain Beatty a copy of the Bible, which he casually tosses into the street. Suddenly, the fire alarm rings, and the two men jump into action. To his horror, Montag finds out that the call is to his own house because someone, most likely his wife, Mildred, let slip the whereabouts of his hidden books. As the second section ends and the third begins, Montag is standing at his house, watching it burn to the ground.