English 10: Writing Portfolio


Catholic Memorial High School



Creative Writing  
  "the mystery of the bloody grandfather clock"

It was June 9th, 2000 and my family and I just moved into my new house. As i'm loading
boxes of my belongings to my new room, I suddenly became distracted. Above me I see an attic but it
is nailed shut. I found the first hammer I could find and i pryed open the door. Just as i'm
about to make my way through the door, my dad catches me and and says "matt! what have you
done?" I am baffled to see my fathers face, worried and in distress. "what" I said.
My father puts his hand on my shoulder and says "matt, there are reasons why this oor has been
nailed shut."

My father, forcing me to finish unpacking has got me thinking of every sinerio of why my dad
almost had a panic attack for opening the attic door. I finally couldn't take the anxiety
anymore. "Dad why can't I go in the attic" My dad sighs and says "the man who
lived hear before us was murdered up in the attic."

I went up to the attic and I find a huge grandfather clock sitting in the back and as I approch
closer i see blood stains. I notice that the clock was too big to fit through the attic door which
lead me to believe that it was made in the attic. I asked my dad "so what happened?"
"that's something you are goin to ask the police about because I don't know."
That night I go to bed and this mysterious bloody clock is haunting my dreams.

I go to the police station the next morning to find out that the italian mob was behind the
murder. I found out that the man who was murdered in my attic was named Steve McManus. This man owed

the mob some money that he couldn't pay back. The mobb boss loved antiques. The mobb boss told
Steve McManus that he had to make him a grandfather clock as payment since he couldn't pay off
his debts. I asked the police officer who was explaining this to me "why did they kill him if
the grandfather clock is completed up in my attic?" The polic officer said "yes, he did
complete the grandfather clock but as you may have already noticed , it is too big to remove from
the attic." The mobb boss was furious with what had happened and had Steve McManus murdered
over the very clock he had struggled to make. To this day I have never made even the smallest of
bets because I don't want to end up being murdered over money.

At night as I stumble upon brush forest, I hear the beauty of nature. Listening to the wind
blow through the tall thick grass. The air is crisp and clean, unpolluted from society. The beauty
of life is breathtaking, watching the baby birds hatch from there eggs and taking their first gasp
of breath into this world. The older birds are already preparing to go south for the winter. All the
animals are busy in their own little world undisturbed while searching for food. No busy streets, no
bright lights, just the clear moon and shinning stars watching down upon you. All your troubles seem
to fade away when you are seeing such a beautiful site. If only people took the time out of their
busy lives, they might learn a thing or two about how these animals live.

I return for the second day and its morning. The birds are chirping at the rise of the
morning sun. The air is cold and the wind is blowing all the dead leaves that once stood beautiful
on the now bare trees. As my eyes wonder, I see the pond in Brush Forest is clear but freezing cold
and is soon to be turned into ice as winter gets colder and colder. The cold doesn't seem to
bother the animals yet, they adapt and take on whatever mother nature throws there way. The once
fertile land, now frozen, hard as a rock. These animals never complain, they do what they have to do
to survive. They don't worry about others problems, they just take care of themselves. If we as
human beings lived our lives like these animals do, we maybe be living in a better, less selfish
world today.

It is now the third day I have returned to Brush Forest. It is morning again and the air is
still cold. The trees are bare and the birds have left to go south for the winter. The sun is hidden
by the dark gray clouds. It seems like mother nature is soon to call on rain. As I feel the wind
chill my face, I watch the dead leaves blow across the seemingly abandoned area. The grass is wet
and damp from the rain from the night before. It is hard to see far away with all the fog hovering
above. The squirrels seem to be the only animals left now. They are still running around for looking
for the last few acorns that are still around. This is the rough time for the animals. The deeper
and deeper into the winter gets, the less and less food there will be for the animals. Most animals
left in search for a new place to live and in search for food. These animals are hard workers and if
humans worked as hard as these animals there would be significant number of people that
wouldn't be poor.

This is a depressing forth visit. There are now no more birds chirping to start the day off.
All the birds have flown south for the winter. There's a little white sheet of snow barely
covering the ground. The air is freezing and I can see the breath coming through my mouth. I sit on
the cold ground watching this bare empty area, trying to listen to nature but I hear nothing. Nature
has sucked the life out of this once beautiful area. As the dead leaves blow upon my face I realize
that nothing lasts forever and there are always going to be hard times not just for the animals that
had to find new places to live, but for everyone, and as soon as people realize this, it will be
easier to get through these hard times and get ready to face your next problem because life is full
of problems

I return now for my fifth and final day to Brush Forest. It is pouring rain outside and I
watch the abandoned area Brush Forest form more and more muddy puddles. The ground is thick and the
air is thin. If you looked at Brush Forest for the first time today, you wouldn't think it is
anything special, but in the summer Brush Forest looks like a little piece of heaven. Even though it
is nothing special now Brush Forest does have its good days. This is just like people, we have good
and bad days.

Jack London was an early 20th-century writer closely associated with San Francisco and adventure.
His most famous book by far is The Call of the Wild that was published in 1903. The Sea-Wolf that
was published in 1994 and White Fang in 1906 also were major hits. London was famous in his day for
his wild lifestyle: among other things he designed and built his own ship, the Snark, and sailed it
to the South Pacific. Jack adopted the name of London from his step-father. Also a longstanding
rumor was that Jack London committed suicide, but evidence seems to indicate that he died of kidney
failure combined with a possible overdose of morphine.

In the short story “In a Far Country”, by Jack London was published in 1899. This piece of
literature basically tells the story of how a man must adapt, forget all that he has learned and
prepare himself for the new land. This isn’t the typical nature story, it’s different and also in a
way cruel. The story says how people, who can’t adapt well, would find it unbearable to travel and
will surly die. This story is telling you (the reader) what not to do if you are planning to

Jack London goes into great detail with his description. You can tell that London loved to talk
about nature and wanted people to appreciate it. The majority of London’s works are to do with
nature. The characters in this story have very little lines even though this story is a good length.
This work has a narrator that tells a story of two men making there way through nature. As the
months go by, it starts to get cold and the two main characters Weatherbee and Cuthfert are
struggling and basically didn’t know what they were getting into when they went on there little
adventure. The cold weather froze over there cabin and they could not get out. Weatherbee and
Cuthfert talked a lot to pass the time. This is where the second main theme in the story comes into
play. Weatherbee and Cuthfert talked a lot about the politics of their time. The cold weather soon
took its toll on Weatherbee and Cuthfert and in the end the cold is what killed them. London is
telling you (the reader) that if you go out into nature unprepared nature can be deadly. The rest of
the works of past great authors we had read talked about how we need to appreciate nature, but
unlike those, this particular Jack London story talks about how to watch out for nature and its
deadly ways. I took this story to be like a warning, don’t go into nature unless you can take what
nature throws at you.



















What is sport? Sport is a game that the most talented class of men and woman will compete to be the
best. Baseball is ranked up there to being on of the most competitive games there is. Baseball is my
favorite sport because no one player can carry a team. Baseball is all about teamwork and it takes a
combined effort to be the best. Baseball has become the most watched sport in the world today.
America is the home of the MLB the greatest and most talented of all the leagues. Boston is the home
of the most loyal fans. We all love and support t he Boston red Sox. Baseball is truly American,
every child learns this the day they go to their first game, take their first bite of that juicy
Fenway Frank. It is a feeling that will always be cherished by baseball fans.

The goal and dream of every baseball player is to win the most games, take the division and then
have the right to call themselves World Champs!!!! Children mold their skills from day one in hoping
to one day be great enough to be able to play in the MLB. These players are not just players they
are role models for the younger generations to come. Some of the great names such as old school Tedd
Williams and the all mighty David Ortiz will always be remember as legends all throughout the Boston
Area. A quote from the Boston Red Sox captain Jason Veritek pretty much sums up what these players
want to get out of playing in the MLB, “I just want to have a great career, win that ring and always
be know as a hardworking team player.”

The origin of baseball has never been proven 100 percent but the theory that is best supported is
that baseball first started off from the med-evil game Oina. Then from that the English started to
play their own version of Oina and soon as the immigrants made it to America, baseball spread across
the country like wildfire. Weather you were good or bad during the late 1800s through the early
1900s every boys dream was to become a professional baseball player. Throughout the country the
modern sport of baseball had different names depending on what part of the US you were in. In some
neighborhoods baseball could vary from names such as “Townball,” “Stoolball,” and “Stickball.” Soon
towns were making small teams and large ball clubs within the larger cities. Alexander Cartwright,
known as the creator of baseball. He one day decided to form a list if formalized rules for the
sport of baseball. Shortly after that the National Association of Baseball Players was formed. And
of coarse now there are teams all throughout the country and has divisions based on where the teams
are located. In some cities baseball has become so big that there are two to three teams such states
as California, New York, and Florida.

Baseball has become so big, that it is accepted that Baseball is seen as the “greatest American past
time” And for the most part this is true. So many traditions over the years have died out, but
baseball is still here stronger than ever. There have even songs that are written about the great
sport of baseball. Such songs as “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” and “Dirty Water” which is sung and
every Red Sox during the seventh inning stretch. Just about every Bostonian knows this song by heart
and will sit there surrounded by thousands and will scream at the top of their lungs just because
they have so much love for the game. This is just one of many reasons why baseball is American
because the US is the home of the most loyal and passionate fans. It has been seen in magazines such
as Sports Illustrated by such critics as Albert Chen who recently wrote about the last home stand
the Red Sox had with long time rivals the New York Yankees stating “I have never heard a crowd so
loud before in my life, the electrifying energy that was raging through the crowd was truly
breathtaking? Now you tell me if baseball is truly American or not.