The book I am currently reading is called The August 5. I have been reading this book for a very long time because I lost interest in it and started reading a new book called I am number four. This book is much more interesting because it has realistic and fictional features in it. The highlights of this book are every time he learns more about him, his home, or finds his people from his planet that are like him. I like how this book uses the plot very well. The plot keeps me very interested in the book because it adds new and very interesting parts to the book very often that are very complex and take time to solve and understand. The weekly reading has kind of made me read a little more but not at home only when I have nothing to do in the study hall. My take-aways from our unit on Transcendentalism and Whitman and “Song of Myself” is that we need to become better people or at least strive to become better. We need to not ever think we are the best and never get better because there is always time to improve on something. I believe going through this unit has taught me to become more aware of myself and what I do. My initial thoughts going into the film is that it is going to be very weird because of the age of the film. I feel like I will not be able to enjoy and appreciate the film because we have much better acting and filming strategies now. I learned that the film uses cool camera tricks to make the viewer have the sensation of vertigo for a small-time period. I learned that this was a more type of breakthrough film for a technology aspect. This film also used very big movie stars who are in some popular films we are known today. The most difficult part of the film will be paying attention to the film and understanding important aspects of the film. The analysis will be tough for us because we would have to rewatch parts of the film just to remember something.
My initial reaction to the work was that it was pointless and boring. I don’t really like how he tells you through the poem how to live the perfect life. Why should someone who doesn’t know how I act be able to tell me how I should live? I also dislike the dumb philosophies that poets try and instill on us while reading. The section my group was assigned is interesting. He talks about opening up to people but also removing the toxic people in your life to become a better person overall. He also talks about weeding through people and helping others that are on the path to being toxic people and even after helping other people still bashed him. The main idea of the section is how you should celebrate life and how to improve it. The themes I discovered while reading was life, death, and nature. The reason Walt Whitman’s devotion to a transcendentalist philosophy affects his writing is that I feel like most poems I have read are always a negative type of poem talking of a horrible life or situation they are in. So many poems are all the same negative and boring talk but he stood out with having a lot of hidden meanings and different styles or approach to the poem writing process. I think the most important line in my section is “The big doors of the country barn stand open and ready.” This line is very important because it has a lot of meaning showing him opening up to everyone else and the rest of the world. Another important line is “The armfuls are pack’d to the sagging mow.” This line portrays him getting rid of all the bad and toxic people in his life. The reason it is so important is that a lot of people have trouble opening up to others because they don’t want to get hurt or lose self-esteem. The biggest difficulty I am having with the work is understanding every line and word. Much of the story has meanings most people can see but finding the hidden meanings takes more thought and time.
In reading the writing of both Emerson and Thoreau, I have found much of a similar connection between the two. They both have a lot of ideas they share in common. Thoreau and Emerson were both very simple men. They liked seclusion and the simple life. They both also agreed on nature. Both of them loved nature and everything about it even down to the little things. They both loved leaving and going to a lake to seclude themselves from the drama and problems in our society. They wanted to just leave by the craziness and enjoy nature. They both also talked of how something as simple as nature can affect your mood and your emotion. Emerson and Thoreau both had fairly similar ideas on government but did not exactly see eye to eye on everything. Emerson thought that the government should have power but not so much that they can control our lives. Thoreau agreed with this but also said that he wanted a sort of balance. He said he didn’t want people to act out against the government but at the same time didn’t want the government getting into everyone’s business. The main idea involved in “Where I Lived and What I Lived For?” was how nature can really affect you. He strongly believed that the simplicity of nature affects your emotions and can reveal your true self to yourself. The main point in “The Conclusion” is that rather than a change in scenery, like taking a trip to the woods if you in a city like area, you should look deeper into your soul to make an impactful change. The benefits of Thoreau’s leaving behind society to live in the woods experiment would be you would get a chance to really seclude yourself from social media and all the noise and craziness we deal with in life. This would give a good chance to self-reflect on things we have down in the past and how we can learn and become better from the past. I would miss hearing what is happening in the world and miss hanging out with friends and not being able to stay in touch with people. I think the test would be good for me though. It would gibe a good change of pace to school and social life. I feel like I could last a good week not having any urges to want to go bavk. The only annoying part would be having to catch up on the news and stuff going on in the world. Hypothetically it sounds very relaxing but in reality I think I could really only do it for a limited amount of time. What we need to take from this is appreciating the simple things in life is important. Simplicity can be fulfilling. In the fast pace world, we live in it’s good for all of us to take a moment and self-reflect.
My thoughts on arguing with people every day now that I have gone through this unit has changed a little bit. I think that it’s more of a self-conscious thing I think of almost right before I would start into an argument now. Now that I have taken the unit I feel like I pick and choose more on what I’m going to argue about or not argue about. I try to make a good point first, then okay points, then a very strong point to finish off with. Arguments, in general, have maybe only improved a little bit but over time I think I over time it will get better. I argue much smarter now. I haven’t specifically noticed any of my peers arguing any differently. I feel like parents or adults never argue with many facts. My parents always make a stupid or very dumb argument to make a point when they don’t even relate. My parents argue by saying stuff like “because I said so” or “it doesn’t matter what you, I said it.” My thoughts at the start of the unit were that we were going to just be learning how to do very formal arguments. My thoughts have changed to now seeing that learning how to formally argue helps with your everyday arguments. The act of making persuasive arguments has made me think more about when I argue if I am really making good points or not. When doing the paper it makes you think much more about trying to win the argument or just lose due to mass communications. Developing it wasn’t too hard but had some difficulties. Difficulties included finding valid information and finding the steps I need to place the information to best suit the argument. It was hard because I had such a persuasion to win and didn’t want to lose just because I presented it wrong. I think the abortion argument was the best one because it had both very good points and the argument has two very separate views that don’t really collide in any places of agreement. The debate came down to who had the better presentation and better questions in the cross-examination.
My topic for the debate was abolishing the electoral college. My position assigned was pro abolishing the electoral college. This does not position personally on this topic. I am in favor of the electoral college personally due to beliefs created when I was a young kid. The only thing I really know about the electoral college is that we expect them to make the decision of the president for our state we reside in. So if Pennsylvania is deemed a republican state that means the majority of people votes for the republican party so they win the electoral college votes for that state. The electoral college is useful because if there is a highly-populated area with a large influence then the numbers would much outweigh smaller areas. When you look up “abolishing electoral college” the results are talking about the proposed amendment sought out to abolish it and have the presidential election purely on national popular vote. It was introduced by Representative Gene Green (D) Texas on January 4, 2005. One way I plan to address this topic in a logical approach is by using the internet and good articles talking and arguing the topic so I can see different approaches people have taken. I feel like the internet is my best bet for doing good on this because I have opposite opinions on this topic so I will have no emotional attachment to the topic and ever aspect within it. An ethical issue brought in with this issue is that the morals of some people may be in the right intent but even though many people have morals for a certain topic but do not get any more power in a state due to the electoral votes. I think the emotions that can be brought into play are anger and enthusiasm. Anger is used in my argument because anger has the most powerful emotional effect on voters’ behavior. Anger also reduces information-seeking; as a result, those experiencing anger tend to consume news which confirms their attitudes. Enthusiasm would come into play by showing the confidence I have in my argument about the electoral college.
Coming into this project I was very skeptical about how hard it would be to follow all 15 virtues. During the days it was very hard to keep the virtues in the back of my head so what I started to do very quickly at the end of the day I would try and reflect on the virtues I had broken or forgot to follow in general. I had many virtues that I did very good at, some that I did fairly good at, and some that I failed at. The one that I failed was either due to me forgetting them, not caring if I broke them or due to me not being able to. I feel like the ones that I did good in were just because I feel like I already follow them without thinking of following them. The moderate virtues that I followed on an ok basis and did not slip up that much on were ones like temperance and industry. Temperance was one I messed up on sometimes because it was broken so it was time to eat a lot and party a little too. The failed virtues that I messed up on for the majority of breaks were due to me not caring or just forgetting about them. During the beginning of the challenge, I thought it would be very easy because if I just follow the chart it would be simple. I turned out to start to do all of them at the same time was very hard. The challenge started off kinda easier though due to being in school and having consistency and only having to change small parts in my day. On Wednesday I was consistent on messing up the same virtues and following the other virtues on task. Once Friday hit, my virtues started to go downhill because the break started so I started to get wild since we had so much time to party. Friday, Saturday, and Sunday were very bad because those were 3 days right in a row that I went “Full Send”. I did some wild things those three days so on Monday I had to chill out because I was very sick that day due to the past 3 days prior. The 24th was Christmas eve so I chilled out a little too but at night I started to slip up a lot. Christmas day I did very well in the morning and mid-day but then at night I went out with people and started to lose the objective in my head of completing the challenge. Thursday and Friday were also average days because they were days after Christmas. Saturday wasn’t on the list but it was a very bad day because I hit a deer with my car. Overall I thought the virtues project was very interesting and opened up my perspective on how the world may view people vs how I view people. I still look at being a good person as just being true to yourself and not being fake with yourself or anybody else.
My first impression on “The Dodo’s Conundrum” is that it is a very sad story. To me, it seemed as if he risked everything just to experience something he could not achieve. He lived his whole life for one intention that drove him crazy enough to die which was very sad. I think that the theme of the poem is that when it isn’t possible to achieve your dream, don’t waste your life trying or change your dream. A question I asked myself while reading the poem was why would the person try his whole life to just achieve something he knew he wouldn’t. Why did the person not try and find a different purpose for its life besides flying? Why were there no other people in his life? I feel like the questions for Dodo Conundrum sound and sense paper were easier to answer because I felt invested in this poem than the other one. The questions made more sense to me to answer because I felt like it was better explained or better understanding. I think that reading this poem was more understandable because I understood the structure. I also understood the poem more because I understood why the structure was set with free verse for some parts of the poem. I also think that reading this poem helped make me a better poet or understand what I should have in my poem. The poem is very descriptive and makes you think and use your mind to relate to what’s happening in the poem
My reaction to the poems that we have read in class are that I still don’t like it that much. I feel like reading and analyzing the poems have made no change to me liking the content in the poems that much. Analyzing something that did not have a lot of meaning to me was just boring and did not sway me in any direction. I did like reading and choosing our own poems because then I could read and choose which one I felt I could do and was interesting. I liked Eldorado my favorite because I feel like I could understand the poem the most. The poem was very versatile in that I could interpret the poem very different than someone else with the same or higher skill level. The poem felt for apt for my age or skill level to comprehend but still on a level for someone with much skill and practice to analyze. The terminology in Eldorado was very understanding and simple compared to other poems where different and unfamiliar words are used which creates no understanding for me. Poetry in my opinion is still very useless and boring but it has gotten a better perspective and level of enjoyment from the beginning of the unit. The extensive terminology of vocab and rules and patterns is hard and very annoying to look for but once you get passed that it is much better. Before the unit I hated poems and anything that has to do with them. In my perspective now I still don’t like poem analysis but I like reading poems more than I did before because I have a better understanding of the mechanics of what the author is trying to portray. I feel like I would maybe read a poem for an assignment in high school and enjoy it much more if we could choose them every time to feel more of a connection with the work rather than just given us a poem and saying to analyze it. Overall poetry has gone from like a 4 to a 6 in wanting to read out of enjoyment and understanding it.
My first view of my story was very small. It was a simple start and a simple ending. My concept of my first view was very simple in the family was very close and then a farming accident happened and later he got caught and had to regain trust. My final version of my story is much more complex and has many parts to it. There is still the initial base of the six word short story but now there’re many little parts that enhance the stories moods or tone. One big instance would be when I had the idea of John killing Carol in the field but I didn’t have any pre-warning or instance of prevention before. I added a part in the story where she was laying in the field and john came outside and yelled at her saying she has to tell them when she is in the field beforehand so they don’t drive there because she could get killed. This was a foreshadowing moment in the story about her in the field getting killed. Another moment in the story that was added to enhance the story was when the court and jail parts. They add how bad john felt and that it wasn’t on purpose. It opens his emotions up to the reader. When the court and jail parts are occurring Jane’s emotions also get portrayed when she talks with Becca about everything occurring. My thoughts on the story are that it can be changed a bit to add more to the story and the capturing of the reader and that I like the way it is growing in my head. I like the way the setting really creates the characters and grows them in the reader’s mind. I don’t like how simple it still is. The story needs more detail and growth in Carol and John. I feel like the stories we have read before did not affect me at all because I didn’t get very into the stories but I have been getting into writing this a lot.
In the story August 5 the boy and the girl are under very stressful and tense moods for a lot of the time. In my short story I am using those moods portrayed in August 5 in my six word short story “Nothing would grow there, ever again.” – Anne Lind. I can incorporate the tense and stressful moods in my story because of the grandfather killing the granddaughter on accident in the corn fields. The stress and tense mood comes in the story because he has stress tring to make sure he figures out an excuse for why the granddaughter is gone while acting like he doesn’t know what happened. The tense mood when is in the story when he has to hide her body somewhere without anyone knowing about it. John gets a lot of stress when he starts to bury her in the ground with the tractor without anyone knowing. Another moment the mood was the same as August 5 was when the grandfather got caught with everything because his wife found out and told the police. Now he is under the stress of not knowing how his wife is going to be after he gets out and if she will ever love him again. Tense mood is in the grandfathers time in the jail because he has to sit in jail for a long time thinking about what he has done to his granddaughter. The grandfather, john, also has to live with the fact that he hurt his wife so much due to the connection the wife had with their granddaughter. The man now has to rebuild his relationship with his wife and the relationship is now tenser because of what happened. The mood of the six word short story very much imitates the mood in August 5 due to the stressful and tense moods.