I have grandparents, but they are in their eighties and it is very
difficult to get one true story from them. The reason for this is that
they often join two or three stories into one. So for this reason I
decided upon asking my mother for the oldest story that she could possible
remember. My mothers name is Eileen, and when I first asked her she seemed
almost reluctant to share with me a story, this could be because she was
on the way out the door, but eventually I managed to persuade her to start
sharing with me the oldest story that she could possibly remember.
My mother started the story by telling me that at the time she was
living in Norwood Massachusetts and was around the age of six heading into
her first day of 1st grade, the year she said was an estimated 1958. She
remembered it as being a very exciting day because she was entering the
brand new Cleveland School, and she had all of her closest friends in her
class. But her exciting day was about to end. Her school as you know was
brand new and there was all sorts of different sized classrooms, my
mothers class had three to many students in it. This meant in alphabetical
order the first three students in the class would have to go to another
classroom with a different teacher and different kids.
Her last name was Crook, and she was the third person on the list who
would be going into a different classroom. She went on to say, "I felt
like crying", so what does she do, she asks to go to the bathroom upon
arriving in her new class. You may be asking yourself, what does that have
to do with anything, but what you donít know yet is that she never
actually goes into the bathroom, she just walks right out the door. Yes, a
six year old first grader is skipping class, so my mother starts her three
mile walk home. at around eight thirty in the morning.
She ended up getting picked up by a person who rented one of my
grand-fathers apartments and he brought her home, where my grand-mother
was visibly upset and brought her back to school. Especially with the
events that have been going on in America over these past few weeks, a
story like this is almost uplifting. I say this because it is a symbol of
American freedom, and our ability to act upon our thoughts and beliefs
weather they are right or wrong.
ď I went to the woods because I wished to live
deliberately, to front only
the essential facts of life ,and see if I could not learn what it had to
teach, and not, when I
came to die ,discover that I had not livedĒ Leaves changing color day to
day, some of
them ready to take that fall that symbolizes winter is around the corner.
A single tree
standing alone in a field of the most beautiful dead leaves you can
imagine.It is passed by
hundreds of students that havenít got that feeling you get when you look
at like and really
understand it. The tree is like each one of us, the leaves are our
everyday day problems
and they evenuatlly go away, or you could say fall off. When you walk by
it that twinkle
in your eye is just the sun as it sets over the tree creating a wonderful
painting of images
and feelings. I often wondered at this tree, that people all over the
world canít see what I
am seeing right now and they arenít giving the chance to see it, and I am
freedom to do so on my own time. That is why this tree is an American
It all started New Years Day at the McInnis
household. A young Jimmy McInnis was pondering how an elderly overweight
Santa Clause could possibly squeeze his way down a Chimney that he himself
could not fit down. While he is pondering this thought his best friend at
the time was over the house.
"Pat", exclaims Jimmy, " Do you believe in Santa Clause"
"Of course not, only little kids believe in Santa"
"Says who" replies an aggravated Jimmy
"Says my parents, they told me like a year ago"
Jimbo had just about enough with these ridiculous commentaries that
Pat was making and decided to go straight to the top to find the real
answers. Little does young Jim know that the man with all the answers (in
his mind) was his father who was making an attempt at taking a nap after a
long New Years eve.
"Dad" screams Jimmy,
"What, I'm tryin to sleep"
"Pat says there's no Santa will you tell him he's lying"
"You can believe what you want to believe replies a frustrated Big Jim"
Little Jim at this point realized that he shouldn't carry this
conversation on any longer with his father or there would be a good chance
of it getting ugly quickly. But the topic didn't abruptly end with Pat as
it did with Big Jim and soon a fight would break out right there in the
confines of the McInnis household. Little Jimmy was no match for a much
larger Pat, but that didn't stop him from attacking him over a topic so
controversial with the youth of our society.
"Hey, what are you two doin down there" yells Big Jim
" I said what are you two doin"
"Nothin" replies an out of breath Jimmy as Big Jim raced down the stairs
After Big Jim realized what they had been fighting over he cam to the
understanding that this was the time to let young Jimmy in on the whole
Santa secret before he embarrassed himself any further.
"Jimmy there is not Santa" said Big Jim
"So you lied?" replied little Jim
"No, I said that you could believe what you want to believe and you chose
to believe in Santa" explained Jim
For at least an hour straight after this conversation Young Jim
cried over this important figure in his life that never really existed in
the form that he believed he was existed in.
"Because I could not stop for Death -", is, a
poem that can be interpreted into on of the most influential pieces of
American Poetry. This poem as you know was written by Emily Dickinson
whose works were recognized posthumously. Throughout Dickinsonís life she
encountered a great deal of difficulties but it was her poetry in "Because
I could not stop for death-", that I think truly defined her life and her
works. The poem reveals in a unique way the three different dimensions of
her existence: death, life, and her afterlife.
The first aspect in which this poem covers is that of the death of
the narrator. By starting off with her death instead of her life makes her
poem unique in that it does not go in the chronological order of her life.
A line from the poem that sets a tone for the rest of the piece is, "The
carriage held but just ourselves-/ And Immortality." I think this is
telling us that the Emily is now speaking as if she has died. The reason I
say this is because she is referring to her life as now only consisting of
her, and the others accompanying her. Emilyís use of the, "-íí, also
leaves the word "ourselves" at the end of the first line hanging in our
mouths until we reach the next line where we realize that the company in
the carriage with her is a immortality which Emily represents as a human
Dickinsonís poetry reveals biographical aspects of her life that are
unique to her style of writing. I came to this conclusion when I read the
line, "We passed the school where children strove", which represented the
early stages of Dickinsonís life, soon followed by, "We passed the setting
sun", which in my mind represents the ending of Emilyís life. By having
the School visual used before the setting sun image I was able to
recognize the beginning of Emilyís life due to its association with little
children playing at recess, and then I was able to recognize the ending of
Dickinsonís life through the use of the setting sun which is used to
represent the ending of a day.
The use of afterlife in this piece forces the reader to look into it
and analyze it. She uses the word "eternity" in place of Heaven. Emily
uses this word in the line, "Were toward eternity". From Dickinsonís
Calvinistic beliefs we can get a better understanding of why Emily is so
sure of her destination after life. The predestination aspect of the
Calvinist religion makes for a very confident Emily in a way that never
once does she become curious to what might happen if she does not end up
Analyzing this poem allowed me to see a more complete Emily
Dickinson, and allowed me in some ways to see what "made her tick". Her
life in, "Because I could not stop for Death-", is summed up into a very
short Emily Dickinson like poem. I think that we all can relate to a poem
like this due to the common language and images that it consists of. This
also breaks down the very intimate aspects of Dickinsonís life from a very
youthful joyous childhood to a lonely bland adulthood.
The Sport of
Discus is said to be developed from the ancient Greeks. It was not a sport
that sprung itself from a form of fighting but instead it was used to test
the strength of a man in the Pentathlon while in the mean time relieving
tensions of neighboring city-states. In the Pentathlon the men would
compete in five events, Discus, Javelin, Long Jump, a foot race, and
Wrestling. A famous quote from Aristotle on the men competing in the
Pentathlon, "The Pentathaletes have the most beautiful bodies, because
they are constructed for strength and speed together". Aristotle really
shows a great example of the respect Ancient Greece as a whole had for
these men. But the one sport in particular I am trying to explain in
detail is the Sport of Discus both in the modern era as well as the
Ancient competitors in the sport of Discus used a Discus that weighed
a great deal more than that of the modern day discus. The modern day
discus weighs four pounds while an ancient discus, found at the Museum of
Fine Arts in Boston, weights around fourteen pounds, ten ounces. Modern
Day Discus throwers, throw in an area eight feet in diameter, while the
area in which ancient Discus throwers use to throw in was called a
"balbis"(CTC Web Editors) and was usually quite small. An ancient
philosopher called Philostratos wrote that the size of the balbis was
small enough so that a large man could stand straight up and be restricted
in all areas except the rear. When dealing with the throwing of the Discus
the modern record is around two-hundred and thirty feet, and the only
record recorded from the ancient times is forty five feet.
The modern day discus is made out of wood or some other material and
not stone or metal as the ancient discusí were made.(CTC Web Editors) When
throwing the Discus, the thrower places the Discus in the palm of his or
her hand while placing his or her fingertips on the metal rim that circles
the discus. Then the competitor spins one and a half times in order to
gain power and strength before heaving the discus through the air. By
placing the fingertips on the outside of the ring surrounding the middle
of the Discus, thus propelling the discus through the air fairly parallel
to the ground. Katherine Clifford is a Freshman at Norwood High School and
a competitor on the Varsity Track and Field team. She told me, "My release
of the Discus is just as important as the power that I throw the it
(Discus) with."(K. Clifford) This is a prime example of how kids at the
amateur level need to develop a complete understanding of the sport in
order to succeed in the highest levels while in other sports you can
survive on pure skills.
The rules in throwing discus resemble the technique of the actual
releasing of the discus in many ways. An example of this is the spinning
around of your body in order to increase your body strength. This is done
because if you step out of the allotted circle your throw is voided in the
eyes of the judges. Rules like this one make it easier for less gifted
athletes to compete at the highest level. An example of this is Olympic
Silver Medalist John Powell. "I do not believe that John (Powell) was that
strong, at least compared to his peers at that period, and I was lucky
enough to spend time with him in the early 80ís, when he was coaching at
Stanford. What separated him from all the others was his work ethic."(S.
Pickering) This in itself makes the Sport of Discus available to a broader
range of people. The reason for this is that with a little hard work and
some skill you can achieve greatness in the sport of Discus. John Powell
is a perfect example of this and how hard work really does pay off.
Another quote from a critic that I found on a Canadian national track and
field web site really emphasizes just how hard and unnatural it is to
throw a discus, "The discus throw requires unnatural movements and body
positions. Most people don't spin while walking down the street. It's
Through the research that I conducted on this sport I have drawn
new conclusions on what Discus ,the sport, really is. My uncle, an avid
sports observer, said, "Its amazing that a single sport can combine
gracefulness with speed and power and still remain largely unknown to the
general public."(J. Crook) It is a sport that has been Americanized in
many different ways even though its origins were and are very un-American.
Much like most sports treasured in the hearts of many Americans the event
of Discus is held in different esteems in different regions of both
America and the World. So in conclusion sport is to me a way of life in
that it shows up in some way shape or form in everything we do. The
competitiveness that it brings out of us humans I think shows who we