When thinking about my favorite things, by mind raced with ideas of my favorite color, favorite movie, favorite tv show, favorite hobby. My favorite color is blue, favorite movie…I am not sure, favorite tv show: Grey’s Anatomy, favorite hobby: sports or drawing. But my favorite thing in life is my dog, Toby.
He is a curious, smart, clumsy, adorable, 5 year old, 90 lb, Labrador Retriever puppy. Squishing a tennis ball is one of his favorite pass times, as well as swimming in the ocean, and exploring in the woods. What I love about him is his personality. At the park, if he sees me gathering up the leash he will look at me then race to the cold pool of the creek, where he would splash and look up at me all innocently. When we get home he will roll upside down with his feet in the air, moving his back up and down, give himself a scratch against the grass. He is dedicated to retrieving the tennis ball, and devoted as he crashes into the waves of the ocean more often than not getting thrown under the current, digesting liters of salt water, but he loves it. I also love how he pretends he hasn’t eaten, giving us his puppy dog eyes, sometimes he tricks us into giving into his request for more food. He is my favorite dog in the world.
Earth Hour is a day once a year when people around the world participate in this annual international event of turning off the lights for one hour. This task is to help provoke others to join in on conserving energy and to help reduce the impact of climate change. Famous landmarks around the world such as the Eiffel Tower, and locally the Golden Gate Bridge joins this event to raise awareness about this cause.
Everyone is encouraged to participate, will you? Join in on March 28, 2015 between the hours of 8-9 pm. Last year 70,000 people participated as the world went dark. You can watch the different time zones change are the lights turn off.
Today we filmed our selves during one of our literature circles about the curious incident of the dog in the night-time, by Mark Haddon. Filming ourselves was slightly uncomfortable but also very helpful because it allowed us to be able to rewatch our selves so we could understand what we need to work and what we did well. We could critique our participation as well as contribution in order to evolve our literature circle discussions in the future.
In our conversation we focused on pages 1-120. These pages were full of interesting fasets about the main character, Christopher, as well as tough dilemmas he faced. In our discussion we shared claims, inferences, opinions, connections, and predictions about the book. From this discussion I learned that Christopher will try to travel to London to live with his mom. We talked a little on this point, if we thought Christopher would be able to travel on his own considering his mental disability and behavioral problems his lists on page 46 and is mentioned throughout the book. The highlights in our discussion was some of the questions we asked each other. The questions allowed each other to think and form their own opinion on the matter. In our discussion we listened to each other, contributed, asked questions, and supported claims by using evidence from the text.
I felt I was participating and listening to my classmates views, although next week I hope to improve by sharing more thoughtful information to aid to the conversation. Also I hope we go more deeper into the book, because we did not have a large variety of aspects we discussed, such as themes, big pictures, etc. In the discussion I felt I was holding back and wasn’t able to say all the thoughtful messages I wanted to bring up. I think next time we will be more comfortable and be able to share more valuable information.
Bill Simulation, Super Pacs, Controversial, What do you think?
In my 8th grade History class, we participated in a simulation where we learned about how a bill gets passed in our legislative branch. For this scenario, we chose to embody The House of Representatives. Every student came up with an idea, then writing it up as a bill. Those bills got sent to different committees. I sponsored my classmates bill, that super pacs should not be able to donate to political campaigns. Here is the argument for why this bill should be come a statute.
Super pacs are.”.. independent expenditure-only committees, Super PACs may raise unlimited sums of money from corporations, unions, associations, and individuals, then spend unlimited sums to overtly advocate for or against political candidates.”This bill promotes the idea that super pacs should not be able to donate to campaigns because there are basically a few people who are deciding what happens in the political world, those with money.
PROS: “Studies show high spending on negative ads increases voter knowledge and turnout. Those who have the least knowledge at the start of a campaign benefit the most.”
CONS: “But don’t big donations mean the rich buy elections?” this oppresses the voices of the middle and especially the lower class,
This bill will benefit citizens that can not and to done large sums to political campaigns because their voices and opinions will be more influential. Making for a more rounded voting pool of preferences. I believe everyone should influence politics no matter their social class, race, etc. This bill will also benefit politicians that super pacs have “overtly advocated” against them. Ending donations from super pacs would have a negative impact on political candidates who rely on super pacs to run their campaigns.
Difficulties passing this bill:
members of congress may have been supported by super pacs, would be a hypocrite to approve of abolishing super pacs when they used them for their political movement.
“If government could suppress “false” speech, the First Amendment would be meaningless. Those in power would find that their critics are lying and suppress their criticisms.”’
While reading the novel Gone Girl, by Gillian Flynn, my group upon consideration decided to annotate on a google doc, accessing each others thoughts and views that allows us to gain new perspectives. Reflecting on my annotations I have noticed the plethora of the uses of literary devices such as signposts, themes, observations, character development, symbolism, questions, big ideas, and opinions regarding the book. I like to observe areas that give me a new look on the world, that makes me think in a way that I have never thought of before as well as patterns seen on “Gone Girl, Reflection 2”.
Here is an example of one of my annotations:
On page 312, Flynn sheds some light on how the media has impacted the legal system, “The media has saturated the legal environment. With the internet, Facebook, Youtube, there’s no such thing as an unbiased jury anymore. No clean slate. Eighty, ninety percent of a case is decided before you get into the courtroom. So why not use it–control the story.” Now because of media it is catered to be biased a sway one’s opinions of views, making the jury system sort of corrupt with having biased jury members influenced by media. So I thought it was very interesting how Tanner (Flynn) wants to use the media to their advantage, although I believe in a free and unbiased jury system where one is innocent until proven guilty. Also I had a text-to-self as Tanner mentions blank slate, and that reminded me of my history class, when we were learning about Thomas Hobbes and John Locke and how a blank slate was one of Locke’s ideas of the nature of man. I find this idea of how ninety percent of time cases are decided before they get to court true yet so corrupt how one of the highest level of justice, right by jury, is manipulated by bias in the media.
Some big ideas present in Gone Girl is deception and manipulation. Amy deceived the whole country and in the beginning of her relationship with Nick, appearing differently than who is really is, the “Cool Girl”, but Nick has also played apart in this too. “Nick…will lie, cheat, even kill to make people think” he is a good guy. This idea of portraying yourself differently to be accepted in society plays a big part in the human behavior today.
Overall I would rate this book an 8.5 because I found this book very interesting because it contained themes that related to social issues as well as plot twists that always kept you guessing what was going to happen next. The two perspectives allow you to know what both Nick and Amy are thinking. Towards the end of the book I realized the characters became less and less likeable I also found the ending frustrating although I think it is symbolic how not all ending end perfectly or the way you want. I think Gillian Flynn took a new route off the mainstream way a book should end.
Today my literary group promoted our thoughts and opinions regarding the novel, Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn.Gone Girl is a thriller filled with plot twists changing in a single sentence as well as speculation that make you think throughout a total of 415 pages. After completing Gone Girl our literature discussion was very interesting, we grasped various topics ranging from predictions to character development. It is hard to shed light on our discussion without spoiling the book because many of the question we posed where about what we thought of the ending and our opinion of each character their role, and how they evolved throughout the book. We even talked about the contrast between the plot line of the new motion picture of Gone Girl starring Ben Affleck and the novel.
In our discussion one of them many things we touched base on was was on what we thought of each character and who they symbolized. Nick’s misogynistic, Alzheimer diseased father, we feel represents Nick. Throughout the book Nick tries not to embody his father. At times he shared his father’s rage of women like on page 396, “…mind-fucking, evil, crazy bitch.”, and again on page 408, “I am…woman-fearing coward.“, at other times Nick is compared to his father. For example on page 158, when Nick’s sister, Go, tells him, not even their father did what he did. Maybe Nick being constantly compared to his father hasn’t helped him, occasionally he follows in the path of his dad.
Another person of symbolism is Andie. Andie represents the Amy Nick first fell in love with. Later in the book as Nick struggles with his adulterous behavior he realizes the need to breakup. I think Nick separating from Andie represents his marriage between Amy and Nick, as loving the “cool girl” or more of the idea of her instead of who she really is. I think one of the main points of the book is for Nick to find himself, and that symbolizes his confusion of who he really loves.
Another topic we discussed were the change in plot from the movie and the book. Although I have not watched the movie yet, my group members told me some of the changes when the book went to the big screen. One of the changes where the loss of characters such as Hillary Handy and Jacqueline (Desi’s Mother) does not appear in the movie and the anniversary treasure hunt clues change from five to four. There is a difference order and objects of the plot, apparently Tanner Bolt comes in sooner, There is also a change in plot, Nick goes to the beach the day Amy disappears but in the book Nick was with Andie. After discussing the contrast between the book and the movie is made us wonder the reasons for each production choice and how it help convey their message.
From this literature dissuasion I gained new perspectives and I have enjoyed reading and talking about this book with my group, each member gave me insight on what they thought of the book and how they viewed the book as a whole. This book was my first triller novel and I am interested to pursuing this genre farther.
While discussing Gone Girl my literary circle collaborated about ideas about Nick. Even though I was surprised in finding out Nick was an adulterous husband, cheating with Andie, a Scottish ginger with freckles, my group members, Miya and Leo, saw it coming. Nick has been sad, lonely, and unloved. Why else would someone have an disposable phone? For a secret affair with a secret mistress, Andie. We think Andie represents what Amy used to be and who he once fell in love with, a young, curious, loving, attractive, adventurous, and happy women.
The main problem that is wrong with Nick and Amy’s marriage is the lack of communication as Miya perfectly states, “Nick’s plans for him and Amy reflect how Amy felt about the bed when they were moving. She wasn’t assertive of enough to tell him she wanted to take the bed, but she secretly hoped he would contradict her and tell him she was wrong. Nick feels the same about Amy. He is hoping that he will eventually wear her out, and she will ask for divorce. Until then, he will say nothing, out of fear of being assertive. I think this is a big part of why they are so unhappy in their marriage. Each of them assumes the other will speak up, will make a change, and so nothing gets done, and everyone is upset.” They do not know much about each other, Nick will never contradict his wife because he wants everyone to think he is a good guy and Amy will never really say whats on her mind because she wants Nick to figure it out by giving him clues, the result is non of them knowing what each other is thinking and an unhappy marriage.
Later in our conversation, we were been comparing what we pictured the characters to looked like in our heads, how they are described, and how the actors look like in the movie. We found it interesting how Hollywood adapts characters into ulterior motives like making actors looks sexier than they are for a target audience.
While reading Gone Girl, I found it very interesting as Nick mentions,
“The second-hand experience is always better. The image is crisper, the view is keener, the camera angle and the soundtrack manipulate my emotions in a way reality can’t anymore. I don’t know if we are actually human at this point, those of us who are like most of us, who grew up with TV, movies, and now the internet. If we are betrayed, we know the words to say; when a loved one dies, we know the words to say. If we want to play the stud or the smart-ass or the fool, we know the words to say. We are all working from the same dog-eared script. It’s a very difficult era in which to be a person, just a real, actual person, instead of a collection of personality traits selected from an endless Automat of characters. And If all of us are play-acting, there can be no such thing as a soulmate, because we don’t have genuine souls.I have gotten to the point where it seemed like nothing matters because I’m not a real person and neither is anyone else.”
I thought this excerpt from page 72, was an interesting perspective of what the world has become, in the most part I find it true, nowadays social media, TV, movies, magazines, etc. influences how to act or who you should be, before all of this there was no one to reference to on how behave, but instead are force to act as themselves, making people more “real” than today.