Thursday, June 5, 2008

Empire of the Sun Character Essay

Empire of the Sun was an amazing movie to watch. If you haven't seen it I will just quickly tell you about it. Empire of the Sun is a movie set during World War II, it is about a rich boy who gets lost from his family, and now has to grow up and fend for himself. He had to grow up for many years learning to survive in concentration camps all by himself. He met a man there named Basie, who Jim thought was his friend, Jim later found out that Basie meant him no good. The war went on, and when Jim was about 12 or 13 years old, he was reunited with his mother and father after the war had finally ended. In this essay I will be talking about the character Jim. Jim was the main character, and to me he went through the most, from growing up with a silver spoon in his mouth, to almost not even having a wooden spoon.

When the movie first started we found out that Jamie "Jim" Graham was a young boy who loved planes, he wanted to fly them all of the time. We also found out that he was a rich British boy growing up in China, he had Chinese house keepers and everything. Jamie a.k.a. Jim was spoiled just like many people expect rich kids to be, he talked down to the help as if they were nothing. He started off as typical bratty rich kid. All he cared about was planes, planes, and more plans, but when the Japanese came and took over all of that changed.

After the Japanese came and took over, Jamie met Basie, and thought that he found himself a friend. After only just a little time of living with Basie, he realized that Basie only wanted what he thought Jamie now known as Jim could do for him. Jim soon had to learn to be on his own, and although Basie treated Jim like he didn't matter Jim still forgave Basie. While living basically on his own, Jim learned that life isn't fair for anyone, and that what he was used to may not ever come back to him. He had to become a surviver and that is exactly what he did. It was a very hard adjustment, but he did what he had to do to survive.

Once Jim finally let go of Basie, he really became a strong person. He did this by helping others through their hard times, he helped them to put food in their bellies, and water in their mouth, he encouraged people to try to keep going on. Jim did all of this for others and through that he finally realized life wasn't just some fairy tale with a happy ending, or at least that's what he thought. He saw everyone around him drop like flies, and I am pretty sure that he thought that, that was going to happen to him too.

After many years went by the war did finally end, when the Americans saved everyone from all of these concentration camps. Jim finally was reunited with his family and by the look in his eyes you could tell that things would never ever be the same. Jim had to learn a lot and he did. The things that he learned was that in life you can't just trust someone because they said that you could, he learned that life isn't easy that you have to do things for yourself, and I think that they were all truly good lessons for him to learn. Jim was the most changed character in this entire movie. He went from a brat to a young strong man, with more life experience than anyone could ever really imagine.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Of Mice and Men Quiz 10 questions

Quiz for Of Mice and Men 10 Questions

1. Which events could have happened if George didn’t kill Lennie?
Lennie, George, and Candy could have all escaped and worked somewhere else until they could afford their own ranch.

2. How was when Lennie killed Curley’s wife, similar to when he killed the puppy?
It was the same, because he did all of that by an accident, Lennie is generally a nice person and when he killed Curley’s wife and the puppy he truly did make and honest mistake that he felt really sorry about afterwards.

3. Can you compare your relationship with your best friend, with the one presented in Of Mice and Men?
Like in Of Mice and Men I have a best friend as well, I do depend on her for a lot of things, such as advice about things, whether it’s about whom I associate myself with or what I wear for the next day. I really trust her judgment and I take her opinion very seriously, and she feels the same way when it comes to me. I feel as though our relationship is the same as in Of Mice and Men, except I don’t and she doesn’t need me to take complete care of her, we are both very independent in our own way.

4. Can you explain what must have happened when Lennie was a child to make him feel the way he does about animals and soft things?
I feel as though when he was living with his Aunt Clara, she did everything for him and just gave him anything to make him obey her, and I think that one day she may have given him something very soft and he may have finally found what he liked and she decided to stick with that. Eventually as time went by he kept rubbing soft things and found animals to be soft, his aunt let him keep rubbing the animals whether he killed them or not, just to keep him quiet which eventually would lead to him killing Curley’s wife because of everything that happened in his life before he met her.

5. What were some of the motives for Curley acting the way that he did with Lennie and George?

I think Lennie intimidated Curley because he was a lot larger than Curley was. Curley was a very small man with anger problems, and I think that he looked for anything just to have a reason to get mad. I don’t think that he had as big of a problem with George as he did with Lennie; do to the fact that George was an average size man who could only do average size man work. I just really believe that Curley had a problem with him based solely on his appearance.

6. Do you know another instance besides in Of Mice and Men where someone was killed accidentally?

In the book Native Son, the main character Bigger Thomas killed his bosses’ wife by an accident. Both Lennie and Bigger didn’t mean to do it, but they did and they both did it out of fear of what would happen to them if they were found out to be doing something that they weren’t supposed to be doing. So even though the stories are completely different in their own way they still ended the same with the murderer dying in the end.

7. What factors would you change if you could go back in time and talk to Lennie, before Curley’s wife’s murder?

I would tell Lennie to stay away from her, because if he touched her something bad would happen and he wouldn’t be able to tend the rabbits. This would be to save Lennie, George, Curley’s wife, and Candy. If he didn’t kill her then Lennie would have stayed alive and Lennie, George, and Candy would have one day been able to buy the farm they wanted and dreamed about.

8. Can you apply the method used to some experience of your own, with what happened to Lennie?

One time like any other kid, my mother told me not to do something, I did it anyway and I wound up getting into trouble because of it. Lennie was told by George to stay away from Curley’s wife, and even though he tried, he wound up being around her, where after sometime he killed her by an accident and then he had to pay the consequences. Which brings me back to if he would have just listened to George and stayed away from Curley’s wife, he would have still been alive and so would she, and they could have gotten the farm that they always wanted in the first place.

9. What questions would you ask of George, if you could meet him?

If I could meet George, the questions that I would ask him, would be:
1. What really made you decide to take care of Lennie?
2. If you knew what you know now about how Lennie’s life would end, would you do anything differently, if so what would it be?
3. After you shot Lennie, what was going through your head?
4. Why didn’t you just run away with Lennie again, like you did before?
5. Why didn’t you let Curley and his boys shoot Lennie, why did you feel as though you had to be the one to do it?
6. If you could say only one more thing to Lennie, what would it be and why would you say that?

10. Could the death of Lennie have happened if, he didn’t kill Curley’s wife?

I am not sure, but I do think that it was bound to happen in the long run, based on the fact that wherever they went Lennie always got them into trouble. If it wasn’t Curley’s wife, it might have been someone else’s’ wife or daughter, or another close family member. So although, it was unfortunate the way that he and Curley’s wife had to die, I do think that if wasn’t Curley’s wife it definitely would have been someone else.

Of Mice and Men Symbols Essay

In the book of "Of Mice and Men" there are a lot of symbols to look at, the one that I found the most interesting, was Candy's dog. Candy's dog represented the end of dreams, grieving, and new beginnings. Candy loved his dog a lot, and their relationship was truly a mans best friend sort of thing, and when that dog died, a part of Candy went with him.

First off, the dreams that ended and died when the dog died. Although in the story they never really mentioned any dreams that Candy may have had before the dog died, you just knew that he had them. Candy and his dog have been together ever since Candy's dog was a pup. They were together and there for each other no matter what, and I know that sounds odd to have a dog be there for a human, but that is exactly what it was. Candy's dog was his true campion, so any dreams that he had when the dog was younger and when he was younger is now definitely dead and gone with the dog.

Along with the dreams that ended and died, was also the grieving period of the death of his dog. From the moment that they took the dog outside to be killed, Candy started to grieve for his life and the life that he used to have with the dog. He knew that all of that was gone, and he felt like he would never have another chance to be happy ever again. Candy just couldn't come to terms with the fact that something that was so precious to him was about to be gone within one blow to the head. it was a sad time for him and he had to grieve and just try to hope that one day he would have more dreams to maybe look forward to and achieve.

This brings me to my final point, which is the hopes of a new beginning. Candy was given a new little puppy that he could raise, and this to me symbolized the new dreams and beginnings that he could maybe have. The dog to me said that you can be anything that you want to be and I am your ticket to all of those new hopes and dreams. This to me also gave him the will back to want to live and be a new and better Candy, and even though this new dog wouldn't replace his old dog, it still gave him the strength to keep moving on.

So in the end both of Candy's dogs represented, grieving, the end of dreams, and in the end new beginnings. This just symbolizes that when something bad happens, no matter how horrible, there will be some kind of way that you can lift yourself back up. Although it may not seem like it at that very bad moment, it will eventually happen, and all you have to do is just wait.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Of Mice and Men Motifs Essay

The book Of Mice and Men represents many things, but two things out of all of the other sticks out the most in the story, these two things are the strengths and weaknesses of the characters. Lennie shows this in a lot through out the story. In this essay I will tell you all about the strengths and weaknesses that Lennie has through out this amazing story.

First off, Lennie has many weaknesses, as you could clearly conclude once you start to read this book Lennie is very ignorant. Lennie does not know much when it comes to books and the way that the world works, but he is smart and handy in other ways, but we will talk about that later. Lennie likes to pet very soft things, and unfortunately everything that he pets eventually dies because he is too rough with them. During his life span, he killed many mice, a puppy and Curley’s wife. All of these things he didn’t mean to do, but do to his ignorance, and not being able to learn from his mistakes with his prior victims, he kept making that same mistake over and over again, which eventually led to his own fateful death.

Lennie, as I said before is also strong and smart in his own ways. On the ranch where Lennie and his caretaker George works, Lennie can take care of all the work load that takes two men to do and then some. Lennie is very strong; in fact George even says that he is as strong as a bull. Lennie can also keep a secret, when George tells him to keep his mouth shut about things, he does, and to me that is a very good quality for someone to have.

So although Lennie may not be the sharpest tool in the shed when it comes to the way that the world goes round, or books, he is still one of the smartest and strongest people you could ever want to meet.

Of Mice and Men Theme Essay

Of Mice and Men was an amazing book to read. It touched on everything that you look forward to in a book; the theme that I will be talking about will be the connection between Curley's wife and the men who live on the ranch. Curley's wife had a lot to do with everyone on the ranch, if she wasn't venting about how unhappy she was with her husband then she was talking about how she could have been an actress. In this essay I will tell you about the connection she had with Curley, Lennie, and George.

One of the most obvious connections that you could talk about would of course be the relationship between Curley and his wife. Curley is a rude and ignorant little man, who bosses everyone else around, just because he is the bosses’ son. Curley's wife is not happy and she is not ashamed to tell everyone. All Curley ever does is disrespect her whether it's to her face or behind her back. He even goes around talking about how he keeps a glove filled with Vaseline on for his wife. He tells her what to do when to do it and how to do it. She is surrounded by a bunch of men who treat her with a lot more respect than her husband ever did. Curley is always looking around the ranch for her, because he knows that the love and affection that she doesn't get from him she'll get from someone else, and in a way that is exactly what she is trying to do.

This brings me to my next connection, Curley's wife and George. George knows when to spot a woman that you need to stay away from, and when it came to Curley's wife, he knew just that. George tried to tell Lennie to stay away from her, and for the most part he did. Although George tried his best to avoid Curley's wife, she still came around and tired to approach him all the time. It was kind of like the more he avoided her the more interested she became, which led to more approaches. I think that Curley's wife was just lonely and she needed somebody to talk to.

Now in the end, there is one person that finally gives her the time of day, but it soon became tragic. Lennie, as I told you before is mentally impaired, he likes to pet rabbits, and dead mice and puppies, now he means no harm, but because of his disability, he doesn't really know his own strength, and he winds up killing the already alive animals after a while. Lennie means no harm, and when you really think about it neither does Curley's wife, but bad things still seem to follow them wherever they go. Now as I said before George told Lennie to stay away from Curley's wife and he did until, she came into the barn and started telling him her life story, after a while she asked him to rub her hair, because he likes soft things and her hair is soft. So one thing leads to another and he wounds up killing her. Now I personally think that this is no ones fault but, in the end if she would have just done what made her happy maybe none of this would have had to happen. Lennie lost her life thanks to her and she died at the hands of him.

So in the end Of Mice and Men was an amazing book to read. It had many themes to choose from, but I found this theme to be most interesting. Of Mice and Men, had everything from, mystery all the way to laughter. I would recommend this book to anyone and I am pretty sure that they would enjoy it.

Reflection on May 28, 2008 Service Learning

On Wednesday May 28, 2008 in service learning, my group came down to the library where we worked on the computers to find more information on our service learning assignments. The things that my group had to research were things like plastics and paper and other recyclable things. Something else that we are doing, working on finding the amount of trash in our neighborhoods, that way we can calculate it, and find out how much this stuff may weigh and things that can be made from all of the trash that we find in our areas. We are almost done calculating our data and soon we will have results and will be able to move on to the next level.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Service Learning Reflection For May 15,2008

On Thursday May 15, 2008, in our service learning group, we talked about our recordings for the trash that we found on ore blocks. After we discussed that, we all came down stairs to the computer lab where we came together with our partners to research more about the topics that we needed to research on. Since my part was to make the data charts, I had to help someone else out with their research. I helped with finding out information on plastics. So last Thursday was just basically a discussion and research service learning class period.