English 10: Writing Portfolio


Catholic Memorial High School



Creative Writing  

Dear Mr.McCabe,

My name is Dan McLughlin and I am a student at Catholic Memorial High School in West Roxbury, Massachusetts. I am writing to you because I would like you to visit our class, and read to us some of your work. I really enjoy your work and I know my classmates would too.

I have referenced your work and I realize that you write many different things. You write about children, drama, fiction, and short stories. You have written many works of each kind, and I think that makes you a well-rounded author. I know that you were born in Ireland, and I like that a lot about you. You're from Ireland, much like most of my relatives. I know that you are also well educated because you taught at Dubin and London.

I especially like your works of "Emerald Germs of Ireland." I like this story because it caught my attention the minute I saw it. I liked the plot because it was about someone trying to get rid of noisy neighbors. "Jesus Mary and Joseph" she curtly responded. "You didn't have to take the force off of me", was my favorit lines in the first cahpter of the book. I liked this part because the person got extremely scared and yelled out those words.

I greatly appreciate your time in reading this letter. I enjoy your work and I know my classmates would too. Our class isn't going to read about you or your stories this year, so we would be missing out a great deal if you didn't come to read for us. The only way we learn about you this year is for you to come to West Roxbury, Massachusetts in the United States. Again, I hope you enjoyed this letter and I hope to hear from you as soon as possible.

Sincerely, Dan McLaughlin

































The song "The Wild Rover" was written by an author that is unknown today. Some guesses you could make about who the author is would be a man, who loves to drink. "The Wild Rover" was originally written in Ireland, in the middle of the 19th century. This song is very popular today in Irish pubs. "The Wild Rover" teaches us not to waste your life on beer and being carefree. This would be the philosophy of the song. Typically drinking is thought to be a big part of the Irish culture and that's what makes this song so popular with people of Irish descent as well as people who are not of Irish descent.

This song would be the exact way not to live our lives. An example of this in the song is "And I've spent all my money on whiskey and beer". The song tells of a carefree man who is fond of drinking and having a good time. The background of this song is fictional, so it probably was a song that was meant to point out how much the Irish drink. It shows us that all our money can be gone if we aren't responsible.

"The Wild Rover" influenced many young Irishmen. The song tells of a classic story with someone who has no real problems to worry about. The influence it has on people today is that they are inspired by it and they live their lives according to it. The influence can be good or bad. An example of a good influence would be the quote "And now I'm returning with gold in great store". This would be a good influence because the wild rover went out and spent his money and had a good time but was still responsible enough to make more money than what he left with. An example of a bad influence would be the quote "And I've spent all my money on whiskey and beer". This quote sums up the influence it has today by people living after this foolish example.

"The Wild Rover" still has an influence today because people still sing and love the old Irish songs. People go to Irish pubs for entertainment and they still get these same Irish songs from long ago. A modern version of this song was performed by the Dropkick Murphys and recorded by the Dubliners. These are just two of the ways that "The Wild Rover" has been performed in modern day version and proves how popular the song still is.

The performance of "The Wild Rover" has changed today because after the first line of the chorus, "And its no, nay, never," some people start to clap. Clapping was added after the first line of the chorus. Also, different versions and words of the song have been changed. An example of this is the Dropkick Murphys version already mentioned above. Although changes have been made, the song remains for the most part, the same classic Irish sing-a-long. In explaining all of these things we can see how the Irish songs and traditions are still present in our lives today. I know from my own personal experience having grandparents that were born and raised in Ireland that the Irish traditions, music, and language have been present in my life since I can remember.




























This scene involves a 35-year-old Randolph man who has been charged in connection to a credit card and identity theft. Emmet Snow is accused of running up $1,922 in credit card charges in a Christmas Eve shopping spree at the Home Depot in Rockland. He was held on $10,000 bail after pleading innocent in Hingham District Court. Emmet Snow has been involved in 2 other crimes in which he stabbed 2 people to death in 2 years. The crime that Emmet Snow committed is motivated by power because he ran credit card charges up on someone else's credit card to buy items that he wanted. His crime is motivated by power because he got money for things to buy that he didn't pay for with his own salary.

There are a few comments/quotes by the criminal, family, and the attorney. A quote of the attorney is " We have no comment at this time." A quote from the criminal would be " I have realized that I do have to put my life into perspective, and I have put my life in perspective to be a productive member of the society." Those previous quotes were from the attorney and the criminal on the crime that is at hand. This was all the criminal and attorney chose to say about the crime.

There are other culprits involved in this Emmet Snow credit card, ID theft charges. The authorities have found out some more information. There may have been 2 others that were a part of this fraud ring. This crime committed may have defrauded more than 50 people in the area, and investigation is still taking place.

One reference to literature in which a fraud is mentioned is in Charles Dickens book called "The Mystery of Edwin Drood." The quote in which it directly talks about the fraud is " was guilty of other glaring pious frauds." This is in reference to Emmet Snow because he was also involved in many other frauds during his lifetime. There is a strong connection between the story by Charles Dickens and the article of Emmet Snow.






















There are thousands of languages that are spoken every day all around the world. English, is a language that has never been around for a long time coming from old English to middle English to modern English. The word "sport" has been in use in the English language since the year 1440. The word "sport" is helpful to world progress as a typical English word because thousands of people use it in everyday speech today.

There are many definitions of the word "sport" as I discovered in my research of other dictionary definitions. The definition from the American Heritage dictionary says it is "an activity involving physical exertion and having a set form and body of rules." Another definition from the Webster's Dictionary is "a joking mood or attitude." Finally, a definition from the Merriam Webster dictionary is "an active pastime." These are just three of the many definitions of the word "sport."

The Oxford English Dictionary has also used the word "sport" in different definitions. In 1440, the first use of "sport" it meant "pleasant pastime." Then in 1604, the definition was "amorous dalliance or intercourse." Another time in 1632, John Milton used it in a verb form "to amuse or divert." When Charles Dickens used "sport" in 1838, it was used "to provide entertainment."

"Sport" was used in a survey of 10 people who were asked to define the word, and then use it in a sentence. The opinions varied from age group and gender of the person. The percentage of the people who had a postive reaction was 70%, and the percentage of the people who had a negative reaction was 30%. The positive reactions generally came from the older men, and the negative reactions came from the girls. For example, my dad Kevin McLaughlin said "People who play sports professionally make a lot of money." My younger sister Catherine McLaughlin had a whole different opinion in which she said "Basketball is a boring sport."

The word "sport" has been used many times in literature over the years. The famous William Shakespeare used it in 1604 in Othello in which he said "When the blood is made dull, with the act of sport." Another appearance of the word was in 1632 by John Milton in the book L'Aliegro which he said "Sport that wrinkled care derides and laughter holding both his sides." The final time it was famously used in literature was in 1838 by Charles Dickens in the book Nickleby when he wrote this line "A pilot, who sported a boat green door with window frames of the same color." These usages in literature show that "sport" was used by some of the greatest authors/poets of the world.

I also interviewed three foreign speakers about the word "sport." The people that I interviewed were my grandmother Barbara McLaughlin, my great aunt Mary Conneely, and my great uncle Pat Conneely. The word in Gaelic for "sport" is "aineas." Mary Conneely said "Sport was not hard to learn because there is a straightforward definition of the word. Pat Conneely said "Sport has to do with competition." Overall the foreign language speakers that I interviewed said the the word "sport" is a huge part of the Irish culture and they use the word daily.

The word "sport" is present in the media today very much so. A new usage of the word appears in Bicycling Magazine in which the article is titled "Jelly Bean Sport Bean." This is a new usage of the word because it talks about sport beans for athletes and no one has ever used sport and jelly beans together. Another new usage appears in USA Today in which the article by Mike Dodd is titled "Sport or not a Sport?" This article argues if poker is a real sport or not. This is a new usage because poker and sport were never considered together. The last new usage of "sport" appears in Newsweek Magazine in which the article is titled "Sport spas resorts." This is a new usage because in the article they talk about combining sports, like golf courses with spas that offer facials, massages, and fitness programs. You can see how there is still different uses of "sport" today even though it has been around the English language for over 500 years.

The English language is a very hard language to learn for foreign speakers. There is a great debate about if the English language should become the official language of the U.S. This may cause a big problem for schools with many different languages spoken, because there would be no bilingual classes and all of the classes would have to be taught in English by the teachers. All of the schools that have classes that are taught in a different languages would have to switch to English and all of the students would have to learn English to communicate with people. This could be a major problem for those schools if English does indeed become the official language of the United States.