Imagine having to bear other people’s emotions, at the age of eight. Anger, happiness, sadness, loneliness, guilt and all the complicated emotions held within a person. Rose Edelstein, the little girl in The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake by Aimee Bender, discovered her “gift” on her eighth birthday. That day her Mom baked her a lemon cake for her birthday and “in each bite: absence, hunger, spiraling, hollows” (Bender10) was all she could taste. Ever since that day, all she wanted to do was get rid of her powers. That feeling of hatred towards abilities she never planned to have, connected to the emotions of some metahumans in the television show The Flash. In season one of the show, the explosion of a particle accelerator caused the outspread of dark matter throughout Central City. Thus, resulting in the development of powers within some citizens. Suddenly being control of special abilities overwhelmed some people. They wanted to get rid of their powers like how Rose wanted to get rid of her mouth. When Rose was in the emergency room, the doctor had told her “you can’t remove your mouth” (79). And similarly, the metahumans were told, their powers could not be reversed. Both of these cases are examples, of people given circumstances they wish they didn’t have to live with, but have to adapt to in their life time. These two unrealistic examples help others reflect on how some people in real life aren’t given normal living circumstances such as people living in poverty. Allowing us to recognize the fact that we should help benefit others with lower circumstances, and at the same time work hard to be able to live a better life.
Anniversaries are usually a good thing, a time to celebrate. Especially ten year anniversaries. However, for Gloria, it was a sweat full of stress. In season 9 episode 6 of Modern Family, it was the coming of the tenth wedding anniversary for Jay and Gloria. Part of the magician act for the event was for Gloria to disappear in her normal cloths and reappear as her “younger” self in her wedding dress, but that stressed her out. During the rehearsing for the performance, she realized she couldn’t put on the wedding dress anymore, the zipper just would not budge. All she could think about before the big day was getting skinnier like she was before, thus leading to the dramatic question; will Gloria be able to fit into her wedding dress on her tenth anniversary? The determination she had caused her to be overly sensitive. Jay thought that their son, Manny, going off to college and not being able to attend the event made her so closed off but when in reality, it was the dress. When the day came, Gloria was relieved when she zipped up her dress during the act. She was overwhelmingly happy. Yet suddenly when she bent down to pick up her change of clothes, the dress ripped apart on the side. She rushed home in embarrassment, she didn’t want to admit the fact that she gained weight because she her mind she always thought people judged her on her looks. Without it, she labeled herself as a useless woman. Jay was heartbroken when she saw her and told her that looks didn’t matter, all that was important was enjoying every moment of the past ten years. He said that he would rather gain a few pounds than staying fit and not having fun. Although the big dramatic question of the episode was answered, the resolution was quite simple. Nevertheless, it still brought across the same message to the viewers, that looks shouldn’t matter. Some people might have thought of the ending as deus ex machina, but the simplicity of the ending made it touching and more meaningful.
In my interpretation of “Ordeal to Check” by Wuther Crue, the life of Lawrence Exeter Jr. is shown through the checks. The story starts with his mother hurting him while being chased by others. After being sent to the Hollywood hospital, he recovers and lives a wonderful life provided by his father. However, when he attends college. His parents split. From then on he was taken care of by his father’s wealth. He promised to pay his father back someday, but he didn’t make the “deadline”.
She strutted down the mall cradling her baby while holding bags titled Goosier Gander Baby Shoppe.
She passed the food court, then the spa, then walked towards the parking lot.
Her footsteps started to speed up, every step was faster than the previous. She started sprinting.
She threw the bags on the floor and held her baby closer to her chest. There were only a few more steps until she reached the Ferrari, but before she could open the door, blood was dripping down her arms. She unraveled her tightly clasped hands and found her baby boy, unconscious.
It took one surgery, two days of recovery, and three hundred dollars. But Lawrence Exeter Jr. was ok. He was well. To celebrate his recovery, he was brought eighty-three dollars and twenty cents worth of toys from California Toyland Company.
Six years later, he was well enough to attend the Palisades School for Boys. In honor of that, his parents gave him a bike from City Bicycle Company. They thought that bike was going to help him fit in. They thought the bike was a key to popularity. They gave him that bike because they felt bad for the mall incident. But instead, that fifty-two-dollar bike was a torture device. It made him stand out, in a bad way. Every day before school, after school they would tease him. They told him he didn’t deserve that bike. They told him that bike was what his parents thought was the fix to their mistake.
Six years later, he went to the Columbia Military Academy, where he thought he could make things better. He thought if those kids did not think he was worth it; it was going to show them wrong. After being deployed year after year. He found himself accepted into Stanford University. That day, he felt his life had changed. But maybe it wasn’t because he got accept into Stanford. But maybe because his parents had divorced. His father, Lawrence Exeter Sr. payed his Mother twenty-five thousand dollars to depart.
After settling into college, he took the French Line, Ile de France to visit his Mom in Paris. She was in tears when he had found her and when he left. The only thing she said to him was “I’m sorry my baby boy. I’m sorry.”
Years later, he never forgot that phrase. But never thought deeper than what has been said. He just left it there at the back of his mind, and carried on.
At the end of the of 1926, he finally graduated from Stanford University and purchased a mansion through the Riviera heights Land Company. Of course it was his father who paid for the fifty-six-thousand-dollar construction, and the twenty-two-thousand-dollar interior design. But this time, he promised he would eventually pay him back. To start his career, he obtained another two hundred thousand dollars from his father, and yet again promised to pay him back. He made a trip to the Ambassador Hotel, and promised to pay his father back again.
In the beginning of 1927, he boarded a steam ship that sailed towards Hawaii. There he purchased coconut sweets and relaxed at Salon Anita Lingerie, where he met his true love. From the moment they met, they were inseparable. They spent every day, working side by side at the shore of Hawaii.
On his fiancé’s birthday, they were accompanied by his fiancé’s sister, Miss Flossie Wentworth. She helped them settle their wedding details as a gift to her sister. She was given fifty thousand dollars to surprise them on their special day. They barely spoke as the paper work was being completed. Then as she was handed the check, a slight grim started to show on her face. To help with the preparation of the wedding, the attorneys Wally and Smith approached the couple to help set everything up.
June was the month of the wedding, while they did that, the couple went shopping for their big day. His fiancé, Ms. Lawrence Exeter, Jr was wearing her brand new ring. It was beautiful, just like the one his mother wore when he was a baby. They strutted down the mall like it was their big day. Slowly, their struts became fast steps. Each faster than the last. They ran towards their Lamborghini, but it was too late.
That day was supposed to be their special day. The day that was supposed to start a new part of their life. But instead. It was his last. “I’m sorry my baby boy. I’m sorry.” Echoed in his ear for hours. Maybe this was what his mother meant. Maybe it was the reason his father sent her away. Maybe this was why she was sorry.
Since the day he was born, every penny, every cent his father spent was on him. Not on his mother. After she was sent away, she’s been plotting this bit by bit. She waited until their special day so that Ms. Lawrence Exeter, Jr, did not have to suffer like Ms. Lawrence Exeter, Sr.
Surgery after surgery. Day after day. He stopped thinking about the mother that betrayed him, the parent that stabbed him in the back. But instead thought of his father. The man who payed check after check. The man whom he never returned any favors to.
On the tenth day he decided to end it. He thought, if he couldn’t stop spending his money. He would stop himself. So that’s what he did.
The old man was dead, the madman was happy. He sought himself as not mad, but didn’t know that the precautions he took made him even madder than before. The adrenaline raced through him like a race car on a track.
As the night went, He disassembled the old man. Chopping each limb with pleasure.
He took three planks from the flooring of the chamber, and contentedly but cautiously deposited them all between the scantlings. Then, he deceivingly replaced the board so cunningly and cleverly that he knew even if the vulture eye was staring upon it, it wouldn’t have detected anything wrong.
Nothing had to be washed out, no blood stain what so ever. This made him laugh. It made him laugh because he knew, the laugh, would never come from the eye again.
At four o’clock, it was still dark. So dark that it was almost the same shade as his mind. By then had already finished his labors as the doorbell sounded. “POLICE! OPEN UP!”
He walked towards the door and placed his hand on the doorknob. With a smirk on his face he thought, what do I have to fear, I did nothing. It was all the eye. Right when he twisted his wrist, his heart switched from a devil to an angle.
In walked three men. One of them had a grin on his face, hoping to bust the crazy madmen that he’s heard so much about. “A shriek had been heard by the neighbors, they’ve called us to search the premises.”
The passage above is a reinterpretation of Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Tell-Tale Heart”. The point of view of the piece is originally first person. However, I have changed it to third person limited. I chose to do this because I wanted to show the characteristics of the mad man without his opinion of saying how he is not mad. In my reinterpretation I was biased against the madmen. The phrase, so dark that is was almost the same shade as his mind represents the messed up mind of the madmen. This made him laugh. It made him laugh because he knew, the laugh, would never come from the eye again shows that it was all in his mind. These two sentences are two that the madman would not say about himself. But are two that describe his personality from a different point of view.
Rez vs Reardan [Found Poem]
Equality. A word, that is often used to describe how people want to be treated. Gender equality, race equality. We’ve all been fighting this for years. But after all those protests and arguments, do we really start treating people the same? No. Everyone is treated differently because different, means different treatment. For Junior, that was certainly not a good thing. Therefore Mr. P, his math teacher, told him: “you have to take your hope and go somewhere where other people have hope.” (Alexie43).
In the novel the Absolutely True Diary of a Part-time Indian, Sherman Alexie creates a complex character who has fought many things since he was born. Along with that, she painted a setting that helps shapes the protagonist into a determined person with hope on his side. The story is set in two contrasting places. It first starts off in a poor Indian reservation, where “poverty=empty refrigerator + empty stomach”. This creates an environment that teaches people how to be poor. Alexie writes, “Kids have given up…Mothers and fathers have given up, Grandparents gave up, and their Grandparents before them.” (42) It shows how the reservation sets an atmosphere that gives characters the feeling to give up. Therefore, Junior told his parents in a serious demanding voice, “I want to go to Reardan”. (Alexie45). When Junior arrived at Reardan he discovered that “Reardan was the opposite of the rez.” There he was able to learn and grow in an atmosphere where he was encouraged to have hope: “I really didn’t, but Gordy believed in me. He wouldn’t let me give up.” (Alexie 94)
THINGS TO LOOK FORWARD TO:
TIPS ON SURVIVING 8TH GRADE:
Look Magazine is our final product which includes a travel article and map for each the Mongol, Korean, Qiang and Uyghur minorities. Alongside these, we also included compare and contrast infographics to show the unique aspects of each minority. I was the writer and photographer of the group and during the process of constructing the magazine, I learned a lot about the Mongol minority. I had a blast throughout the process. From researching about the minority to editing pictures to the millimeter, it was like taking a ride on a roller coaster.
Gifted or ungifted, everybody is unique in their own way. Each person brings something special to the table, and that is what the author is trying to teach us. He believes that everybody in the world contributes in a distinct way, and with somebody missing, a small area will crumble because of the loose connection. In the book Ungifted by Gordon Korman was able to express how Donovan Curtis, the “ungifted” child, turned out to be gifted after all.
After accidentally trashing the school gym, Donovan finds himself in great danger from superintendent Dr. Schultz. In order to avoid paying for the repair, he was willing to do anything in his power. Then due to a mix in names, Donovan was sent to the Academy of Scholastic Distinction. While trying his hardest to blend in with the gifted kids, Donovan was forced to join the robotics team. All the members collaborated to build a robot for the state robotics meet, however, in each meeting all Donovan did was print pictures to paste on the object. As students started to suspect that Donovan was not a gifted child after all, they recognized that his true talent was in controlling the vehicle; “Abigail was at the controller…But it was impossible to avoid comparisons with the way Donovan had handled the joystick. He couldn’t make Tin Man go any faster, of course. But there was a nimbleness to his driving, an economy to the robot’s maneuvers.” [Korman245] When Donovan was put in charge of controlling the vehicle, it showed the readers that even the slightest contribution can make a difference. Yet, when Dr. Schultz pulled Donovan out of the team as his consequence, that was when the team knew they would fail; “’He drives the robot!’ ’We’re dead without him!’ ‘He is so gifted!’” Though the team had built a successful robot, they knew that without the controller, the connection with the device was unstable. And to acknowledge his gift in this area, he now “traveled by minibus to the Academy three times a week for robotics.” As a conclusion the author taught us that there is no such thing as ungifted. No matter in what area, big or small, everybody is talented in some way, and without them them there will be a gap in the community.