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I hate mondays.

Guitar Hero has been one of the most addicting games I’ve ever played. Then again, I get addicted to a lot of games very quickly. I think what makes Guitar Hero a very successful game is that you can play with multiple people and the controls have been made to look like the actual instruments you’re supposed to be playing. Being able to play with friends is a very big deal when it comes to games; everyone enjoys a game more when they are able to share the fun with friends. The game also gives one the ability to customize their character and choose different levels of difficulty, making it more appealing to gamers. Lastly, the fact that you are able to play different instruments that have controllers that function differently makes the game more interesting. Many times, games get boring because the actions you do become redundant and the game becomes less appealing after an hour or so. These are the reasons I can never get enough of Guitar Hero.

E-mails from colleges are seriously getting weirder every time I read one.

E-mails from colleges are seriously getting weirder every time I read one.

Final Project Proposal

For my final project I plan to start a journal of my thoughts. I will try my best to write in this journal for at least 30 minutes a day. There will be no specific subject nor will I be writing in a particular writing style; this journal will just be an accumulation of my thoughts on any subject of my desire.

Many of the people who know me well have always encouraged me to start a journal so that I may release my stress and anger in a healthy way. I have tried many times to do so, but have never been successful in being consistent and eventually stop writing. Thus, I really wanted to use this project as an opportunity to motivate me to write every day about anything on my mind. I also intend for my writing to better with this experience. For one’s writing to improve he/she must write often and actually try to better their skills, so with this project I intend to do just that and succeed in expanding my vocabulary and improving my grammar and such.

Thursday Morning Essay Prompt

Invisible Citiesis a book I would have never thought I’d come across in my high school career. Up until now, all of the books that I’ve been assigned by teachers have been, how should I say… more ordinary? What I mean to say is, I have never read a book quite like this, and to think that there are books structured in this way really caught my attention. Novels that I have read both for school and myself have always been structured with chapters that have an obvious connection to one another; they told stories that were much easier to follow thanthis story of Marco’s journeys.

I don’t think I have ever exerted so much energy in trying to follow and understand a novel as much as I have while reading this book. I tried my best not to analyze it so much, but the idea of there being a “thread” or some kind of pattern within the book was always on my mind. I often found myself trying to make connections with each chapter, using the Marco-Kublai sections as a key to understanding the relationships between the cities being described. I found myself picking out similarities in many of the chapters, and came to the conclusion that many of the sub-chapters held some kind of lesson.

Incidentally, even though I struggled very much while reading this book, I found it quite enjoyable. I benefited a lot from this experience because, in the process of trying to figure out a way to make the book easier to read, I realized that I shouldn’t try so hard to pull out the minor details when reading through sections the first time. I figured out that I should JUST read when going through a new section, THEN pull out what stands out while skimming through the second time. In addition, I have come to the conclusion that Calvino’s intent for this book was to emphasize the idea of perspective to those who read it, so that we may understand that there are many, many, ways to look at a subject, so we should keep an open mind.

Happy Belated 4th!

Happy Belated 4th!

The things you can find on the beach at night! (x

The things you can find on the beach at night! (x

Opening Reflection 6/28

1. Cities & Eyes 2

Zemrude’s form all depends on the mood of the beholder. If you go by whistling with your head faced to the sky, you will know the city from below: window sills, flapping curtains, fountains. If you walk hanging your head, your eyes fixed on the ground, sluiceway, manhole lids, garbage. It’s impossible to say that one aspect of the city is truer than the other, but you hear of upper Zemrude mostly from those who remember it, as they sink into lower Zemrude, their days repeating over and over and constantly finding the ill-humore of the day before. For all, eventually the day comes when we bring our gaze to the gutters and are no longer able to look at the sky. The reverse is not impossible, but definitely quite rare; and so we continue walking through these streets with eyes now digging into the cellars, the wells.

2. Invisible Cities is a very interesting book. The structure of the chapters and the way it is written is quite unique and fascinates me because I have never read something like it before. The funny thing is, the reason I find this book so fascinating is also the same reason I hate the book. Since I have never read something like this before I find it very confusing and a bit hard to follow. In addition, it frustrates me a bit that I have more questions than answers about the story. Mr. Franz has told me that this is a good thing, and yet, I am having a hard time getting out of the habit of analyzing the book so that I may appreciate the writing. And so, hopefully, with the time we have remaining, I am able to quit my old habits and learn to really appreciate writing.

   

Invisible Cities/Inception

Invisible Cities and Inception both question the idea of reality. The possibility that Marco Polo is only imagining the cities he describes to Kublai is highly likely, but not definite. I say this with the idea that majority of the places Polo describes are quite ridiculous. For example, having a city where once people get tired of their life, everyone just changes occupations and lives completely new lives with different wives and such so easily is completely preposterous. On top of that, Polo says in recent chapters that he has been talking about Venice the entire time. When I read this, I recognized that many of the cities Polo describes are very similar, just tweaked a bit. Another situation where this matter of whether or not what is being perceived to us readers, is if these Kublai and Marco conversations are actually occurring. Throughout the Kublai-Marco sections of the book, the conversations between the two are very peculiar. At first they are unable to speak to each other and converse with gestures, then the next thing you know they are able to talk to each other fluently. There never seems to be an explicit idea of what is happening between the two men and at one point they even question their own existence! This being so, I feel that the reality of what is being said by Marco is a major question.

In inception, the entire film revolves around separating reality from one’s dreams. Knowing what is real, and what is not. In the movie, we learn that a dreamer can drop into Limbo (unconstructed dream space). When Molly and Cobb were in limbo they were able to live the way they wanted and lived like gods. Eventually, Molly becomes so caught up in their unreality she chooses to forget what reality really is. When Cobb could no longer live a life like that, he plants the idea in Molly’s head that her world was not real and that death was a necessary escape. As a result, when Mol and Cobb do escape the dream, the idea he planted in Mol’s head sticks, eventually leading to her death. In addition, as the movie ends, the inception seems as though it was a success, but in the last minute or so, Cobb spins Mol’s totem…and it doesn’t fall, continuing to spin, and the movie just ends; mind fucking us all!

With this, I can confidently say that although Invisible Cities and Inception both create a lot of confusion and uncertainty, each of them succeed in forcing the viewer/reader to question what reality and infect the mind with this idea.

Cities & The Sky

Cities & The Sky

Response to Jess’s post

I definitely agree with Jess that many English teachers go about teaching their subject in the wrong way. Quizzing students on reading and even restricting them from going further really isn’t the way to do it. Also, constantly demanding students to analyze a book when reading through it the first time doesn’t help either. Going about books this way prevents many of us from really enjoying and appreciating a book and I think that a lot of teachers really need to come to this understanding. If teachers would like their students to be more engaged in class and actually care about a book they mustn’t continue on this way. With this being said, I really enjoy and appreciate that Mr. Franz has been using class discussions to help us understand Invisible Cities. Although the book is quite challenging I am surprised to find myself enjoying reading it.

Since I’ve started high school I have always leaned more to being one of the quiet ones in class discussions. I don’t always share my ideas even though I should because I am often intimidated by what my other classmates put into discussion. Although I have come to realize that regardless if I may or may not sound stupid, saying what I think is definitely the best thing to do. For the most part, I have been trying really hard to vocalize my opinions in this class and hope that I can build my confidence in doing so with what time we have remaining.