Love is All You Need

Blog Prompt 2.12.14

DUE: Midnight TUESDAY 2.18.14

 

Yesterday we watched the short movie Love is All You Need.  Today I would like you to respond to that movie on your blog.  If you need to you may watch the movie again to refresh your memory.  Consider these questions as you write: How did the movie make you feel?  Why? What part/s of the movie shocked/affected you the most?  How so? Please write 6+ sentences.

Finally, please respond to the following questions in complete thoughts: 1. Why did the director choose to reverse the societal roles in Love is All You Need (i.e. straight people or “Breeders” are outcast while LGBTQ people were the accepted)?  2. What affect does this have on the audience?  Why is or isn’t affective?

Who is Holden?

Blog Prompt 1.29.14                                                                                     DUE: Midnight TUESDAY 2.4.14

 

You will need to refer back to The Catcher in the Rye for this blog post.

So far you have read chapters 1-12 of The Catcher in the Rye.  For this week’s blog I want you to pull out 3 words that you think describe Holden.  Look through the chapters we have read so far and decide which words describe Holden’s character the best.  (For example: Remember Of Mice and Men? 3 words that would describe George are: Loyal, Realistic, and Kind.)

After you pick your 3 words, then you will need to explain why you selected those words.  To do so, you will need to include one quote for each word that you picked.  The quote should show me why you believe your word is a good descriptor of Holden.  Finally, in your own words you need to explain how that quote is evidence that your word describes Holden’s character.

EXAMPLE: George is Loyal.  “It ain’t so funny, him an’ me goin’ aroun’ together,” George said at last. “Him and me was both born in Auburn. I knowed his Aunt Clara. She took him when he was a baby and raised him up. When his Aunt Clara died, Lennie just come along with me out workin’. Got kinda used to each other after a little while.” (3.12) This quote shows how George is loyal to Lennie.  Throughout the novel George is constantly expressing his frustration with Lennie and dreams about how his life would be so much better without Lennie around.  But this quote shows that despite how better George’s life could be without Lennie George would never and has never left Lennie.  They have been together since they were young; this shows how loyal George is to Lennie.

And for your blogging enjoyment…

Blog Prompt 1.22.14

DUE: Midnight TUESDAY 1.28.14

 

Go online and look up the definition of SOCIAL JUSTICE.  Copy and paste the definition on your blog making sure to give the source website.

Then, think about what social justice means to you.  What do you think about when you hear the words social justice and read the definition you just found?  Write 3-4 sentences about your impression of social justice.

Finally, pick a social justice issue.  If you can’t think of one, type “social justice issue” in Google. Then do some research.  What are the facts? Why is the topic you picked an issue? What can people do to help? Why is it important to know about the issue you picked? Etc.?

What is Wrong with People?

The saying goes: “Black Friday:  Because only in America people trample others for sales exactly one day after being thankful for what they already have.”

It was amazing to see the videos and pictures of people around the country in a complete FRENZY over a $200 television or $1.79 towel.  crowd

 

To make things worse, there were huge crowds of people that encouraged and cheered on fist fights and brawls, in public, between two grown adults.  Ridiculous.  When is it ever OK for someone to do bodily harm to another over a blender?  Is that even logical?  Why is it that people are willing to mobilize a MOB of people to get what they want?

fight

 

I know that everyone wants a bargain and we never want to spend more money than we have to, but seriously…

I did some black Friday shopping this year.  I did it from the comfort of my own couch, on my computer, without any fighting.  And guess what?  I got the same deal as those who battled it out in the store.  I didn’t even have to get out of my pajamas! black friday

 

 

Your blog post for today:

— What is mob mentality?  Have you personally experienced this?  When/where? Tell about it.

OR

— Where in society do we see instances of mob mentality? What are the consequences? Provide an example.

 

Blameless!

As hard as it is to believe, when I was younger, I did not always make the best decisions.  There were plenty of times that I didn’t quite make it to school or I claimed to be sleeping over one person’s house, but really was at another or just running the streets.  I participated in group activities at homes where no parents were around and went to many late night bonfires in places that were not made for fires.bonfire_party1

Sometimes though, I got blamed for things I didn’t do.  I lived in an apartment complex that was surrounded by woods on several sides and up against a golf course on the other.  The apartment manager was a real jerk.  I still think he really just hated kids – especially me and my friends.  One afternoon, around Christmas time, we were just looking for trouble and we loved to torment the apartment manager.  He had carefully strung hundreds of Christmas lights all around his apartment building.  For some reason, we thought it was a good idea to steal the bulbs from several strings.  I don’t know if you know this or not, but when one light is removed, the rest of the lights don’t work.  Funny, right?  Yea – he didn’t think so.  christmas-lights

We smashed the individual lights on the ground (they made a really cool popping sound)!  After we were bored with those shenanigans, we went to our favorite little “hiding” place in the woods and just hung out on the wood stumps we used for stools.  We laughed, told stories, and gossiped about people we knew.  As the afternoon turned into early evening, we decided to head home.  Coming out of the woods, we saw the apartment manager – and he was FURIOUS about his lights (giggle).  At least we thought that was what he was mad about.

What we found out later (when the apartment manager came knocking at the door) was that a small fire was set in the woods by his apartment.  Guess who got blamed because he saw us coming out of the woods on the other side?  ME!  He said that he had seen both me and my friend exiting the woods and knew that we had to have been the ones to set the fire near his house.  What?  It wasn’t us.  To this day – I will vehemntly testify that I DID NOT SET THIS FIRE!  Yeah, I stole his lights and smashed them, but I DID NOT set that fire.

I still don’t think my mom believes me – 30 years later.  Uggg.  Being a teenager sucked sometimes.

The Orangutan and the Hound

Rarely do I click on video clips that others post to Facebook.  By my standards, most are dumb.  Today was different.  I read the comment, “Great video.  Will leave you with a smile.”  Ok.  I’ll bite.  After all, it’s 3:00 – I have conferences until 7pm and all my papers are graded (thanks to my great teaching intern)!  Click.  Biggest smile ever!  I can’t even begin to tell you how happy this video clip made me today.  I watched it several times and decided I wanted to feel the same joy, the same love that orangutan had for the hound.  Every time I watch it, I imagine what those animals are thinking.  Wouldn’t it be amazing to have such unbridled love and friendship for another? In the same breath, I think – why can’t people be like this?  Why can’t I be excited to interact with every person I meet?  Why can’t I just throw my arms around new acquaintences  and hug them with all my strength?  Why don’t I give everyone half of my candy without them asking – or like the orangutan, shove it down the hounds throat with love?  Would I break through gates just to be around another?  Could I be content laying in the grass, quietly, next to my friend.  Where can I find my orangutan?  Enjoy…

 

iPhone Frenzy

Again, in true Apple fashion, the newest iPhone hit the market this week.  The new iPhone 5S immediately caused a stir with its fingerprint security technology.  The way it works is that the owner uses their fingerprint to “open” the phone instead of a numerical passcode.  I will say, that when my husband got his new phone, it was one of the first things he set up and played with.  He did his print and then I did mine.  The set up was simple and was very James Bond-esque.  I had to press my thumbprint on the home button several times so that the phone could read and store my print.  Once it was accepted, it is the only way the phone will bypass the password screen.  Of course, others are now saying that the technology is easily manipulated and can be broken.  So what.  It’s cool.  The phone is fast, the camera is better, and the fingerprint technology is interesting.  But what if someone steals your phone?  Will they need to cut my finger off in order to bypass the security.  I hope not, but crazier things have happened.

5s

Of Mice and Men…

Thinking about yesterday’s reading, today’s blog post will focus you academically.  I know, not as much fun, but still necessary.  Remember, you can always post MORE if you’d like, just get this one done first.  Ms. Toncler developed 3 focus questions from which you are to choose ONE to answer on your post.  Please pay attention to what is being asked, your grammar, and punctuation.  It all counts.

  1. Yesterday we talked about how Curley’s wife is not given a name.  Some students suggested this was because Curley and society views her as a piece of property.  Do you agree with this reading of the text? Why or why not?  To back up your claim, use one piece of evidence from the text (direct quotation or paraphrased section).  Then write about whether you think women today are viewed as property.  Give some real life examples to support your answer.
  2.  In chapter 5, Lennie kills Curley’s wife and runs away.  When the farmers find her body and decide that Lennie is the killer they plan to shoot him.  Do you think Lennie should die for killing Curley’s wife? Why or why not? Also, if you were George would you help the farmers find Lennie or would you protect him?  Have you ever had to make a difficult choice between helping a friend and following the rules?  Give an example.
  3. At the start of chapter 5, we see Lennie talking to the dead puppy.  He blames the puppy for its own death because “You wasn’t big enough” and “he made like he’s gonna bite me… an’ I made like I was gonna smack him… an’… an’ I done it” (85-87). Lennie blames his victim again when he kills Curley’s wife and says it was her fault for yelling.  Do you think Lennie blames his victims for their own deaths because he doesn’t know any better? Or this there another reason he does this?  In your own life or in society today, do you ever see or hear about people blaming victims? Give a real life example of victim blaming and where you think it is justified or not.

So there you have it.  Choose one and write a COMPLETE response. After you are finished, you can always write another if you’d like.  Happy blogging!

Nine Eleven – 9/11/2001

world-trade-center1Sometimes it’s hard for me to remember that most of you were 4 or 5 years old when the tragedy of 9/11 occurred.  It’s not realistic to think that you can tell me what you were doing that day when four, simultaneously hijacked, planes destroyed the safety and security of our country.  Most of you were probably watching cartoons, or perhaps eating Cheerios or playing with your favorite toys.  I was teaching that morning. The first plane hit the North Tower at 8:46 a.m.  North TowerI remember someone coming to my classroom and saying that a plane had hit the World Trade Center. We kind of laughed at the thought that some pilot hit the tower.  The building is huge – how could someone not see it?  The second plane hit the South Tower at 9:03.  At that point, everyone knew something was wrong.  It was no accident.  It was terrorism.  Thirty-four minutes later, the PentagonPentagon was struck; and at 10:03, one hour and 17 minutes later, passengers on a fourth plane attempted to subdue their hijackers.  They were unsuccessful in their attempt and the plane crashed in a field outside of Shanksville, Pennsylvania.  ShanksvilleIn all, 2996 people perished that day.  But everyone in the country was injured.  Our souls hurt. How could this happen?  Why did this happen?  Who was to blame? What was the government going to do about it?  There were so many questions and so many scared people.  I had students who were cut to their core because their parents were working in the Pentagon.  Were they OK?  Another was worried about their mother who was flying that day to New York for business.  Where was she?  Was she OK?

Growing up right outside of New York City gave me a different perspective of the events of 9/11.  I remember as a little girl and a young elementary school student going to New York on many field trips.  We visited the Statue of Liberty, The Empire State Building, and of course The World Trade Center.  My father traveled by train everyday from our home in New Jersey to his office at One World Trade Center.  His train arrived at the same station where hundreds perished due to the crushing weight of the falling towers.  I recall eating lunch at the Windows on the World restaurant on top of the trade center and marveling at the unbelievable views offered by the panoramic windows.  To imagine being 110 floors in the air and watching a plane fly directly into the building just shakes me to the bone.  They couldn’t run, they couldn’t get out, they couldn’t breathe.  Some jumped – 110 or more floors, to their death.  THEY JUMPED. I can’t imagine the terror of feeling that was the only option.  Police officers and firemen ran IN the buildings as everyone else was running away.  Many of them never came out.

About a year after, my husband and I went back to NYC to Ground Zero.  September_17_2001I wanted to see and remember what that space had one time looked like.  I wanted to see the destruction and damage myself.  My husband had never been there before, so his only references were pictures on TV or in books and magazines.  As we stood on the platform, I experienced an immense sadness that hurt my heart.  I hurt for the wives and husbands who lost their spouses, for friends that lost friends, for me – who lost high school classmates, and for the children that lost their parents.  How would anyone ever heal?  How would we make this nation safe again?  I squeezed my husband’s hand, knowing that as a police officer, had he been in NYC that day doing his job, it could’ve been him that never came home.  Even now as I write this, I feel a lump in my throat and tears welling in my eyes.

However, I cannot lose hope.  I cannot let the actions of terrorists dictate how I will continue to live my life.  I will never forget what happened that day and how it changed our country forever.  I will remember the innocent and the brave and those that have suffered more loss than imaginable.  Time will never heal this wound, but time will afford us the valuable lessons we can take from such a horrific act. Lights