When I asked my father the oldest story of our
family history, he went up to the attic and handed me this book. He told
me this was my Great Grandfathers Union Book. Back in the older days
laborers had to have this book that contained there contract, work records
and wages earned.
This book I have is almost 100 years old, and my father gave it to
me and told me to take care of it. My Great Grandfather Bernard J. Manning
born in Ireland in 1872. He came to America as an Irish Immigrant in 1904.
He worked for the United Brewery Workmen of America, an International
union. It was located in Boston, and he started working in 1906, and left
the Union in 1908. Before my Great Grandfather started working in 1906, he
had to sign the “Declaration of Principles”, which stated that they where
a lower class. It also stated that they may only earn “as much as enables
them to eke out a miserable existence”.
When the Irish came to America there where kind of treated like
slaves. The people’s laborer Union knew this so they could easily take
advantage of them. They knew that they could get away with paying them
little wages, and making them work in bad conditions, because they where
desperate for work. After completing his contract with the Union in 1909,
my Great Grandfather left the Union.
There are not many places in Boston where you feel as if you
are in a whole other world. I am talking about a peaceful place where you
cannot here the noises of the city, like the beeping of horns, or the
sounds of engines but just the sound of nature around you. I am talking
about a part of the Charles River near Route 1 where you can fish. I went
fishing there over the summer, even though you rarely catch fish there; it
is a great spot to think. To best describe this, this reminds me off the
story Nature by Ralf Waldo Emerson. Emerson says “I become a transparent
eyeball; I am nothing; I see all, the currents of the Universal being
circulated through me”.
Many people think of the Charles River as a polluted place, but it
has not always been like that. Back in the late 50’s my dad used to even
swim in it. The reason why it is so dirty is because some people dump in
it, while when it rains out, all the filth from the streets like oil,
streams into it. Back in the day, you could eat the big Bass that you
caught, but times have changed.
When I observed this spot for 12 days, I saw how after it would rain,
the River would be slightly higher then before. The trees have very few
leaves on them, you can tell that winter is near. The Charles in a big
part of Boston, it runs just about everywhere.
My spot is an American place, where you can feel, see, and taste
Mother Nature around you. It’s like a place where I have never been
before. Not many people know about it, but it is there, for the people
who are looking. No one can take this place away, they can trash it,
pollute it, ignore it, but the Charles is still there.
Mike Roberts, 23 years old, was hanging in a Texas
state prison on Tuesday. Mike, born and raised in a small town in Texas,
led a life of crime. Mike had spent most of his life thinking he could
get away with anything because he came from a family that knew people in
high places. Mikes best friend Jimmy stated in an interview "Mike was the
type of kid that gets what he wants, even if it hurts other people".
Jimmy also said "Mike was also one of the luckiest kid I knew". On
Tuesday Mikes luck finally ran out.
It all started when Mike was young. Growing up in this small town of
Texas, Mike was a loner who liked to be by himself. Starting from the age
of 12, Mike used to steal from neighbor hood stores. This led to breaking
into houses, and by the age of 17, mike was breaking into cars, and had
already been arrested five times. Because his parents knew people in high
places, Mikes records where cleaned. Some may say that it is Mikes
parents fault for his bad behavior, others say if the society got more
involved, maybe Mike would not have ended up in jail.
One Sunday afternoon Mike went to the rich section of his town and waited
for his next victim. He saw a bran new Jaguar that he was going to use
for his getaway car. Mike noticed that there was an alarm on the Jaguar
so he planned to wait for the owner to come out and get into the car.
About 4:00 P.M. a young blond female carrying a baby started to walk
towards the Jaguar.
Witnesses say that mike slowly made his way over to the women casually
asking her for directions. Mike shoved the women out of the way and
grabbed the keys. The women screamed for help, then Mike pushed the women
to the ground. Fortunately the baby was not harmed. Mike hopped into the
car pealed away. Right before Mike got to the bank four police cars
surrounded and arrested him without a fight.
Mike had to appear in front of a judge the following day. Mike just
laughed about the situation, thinking that he would getaway clean like the
times before. But this time was different and he was sentenced to Texas
State Prison for a five-year sentence. Mike was put into a cell with a
man named Tony. Tony was 6"8" weighing 360 pounds and serving a life
sentence for murder. Mike knew that he had to stay on the good side of
this large man.
When Tony asked Mike what he was in for, he said for stealing some stupid
blond woman's car. When he asked if she was holding a baby, Mike said,
"yeah that bimbo was holding a baby but I still pushed to the ground". It
turns out that she was Tony's wife. The following day Mike was found
hanging his cell. Witness's say that Tony made Mike his women for the
next 3 weeks and his last moments was not fun. This goes to show that
Mike was not so lucky after all.
Whitman, who was born
in New York, got involved in journalism and was editor of a newspaper in
his early years. Whitman used free verse and did not use a rhyme scheme in
his poems. His unique writing style makes him a well-known writer. In
Song of Myself Whitman describes the relationship between man and mother
nature. Whitman also likes to use patriotic themes in his writings, and
from that you can tell he is proud to be an American. The reason I choose
this poem is because I find it to be easy and enjoyable reading.
In his poems Whitman uses great analogies to portray mother nature.
From sentence 17,”This is the grass that grows wherever the land is and
the water is, this is the common air that bathes the globe”; this is an
example of nature. When Whitman says grass grows near water, this is
because it needs it to survive. Much like us, we also need water to
survive. When Whitman says “the common air that bathes the globe,” he
means that air continuously flows around the world supplying one of the
essential forms of life that enables us to survive. This quote is an
excellent example of when Whitman uses Earth’s resources in his poems.
Whitman also uses animals to represent emotions in his poems. From
sentence 52, “The spotted hawk swoops by and accuses me, he complains of
my gab and my loitering”, shows how the animals use there natural
instinct’s. The spotted hawk is a rare bird, and it swoops down to scare
off any danger. Whitman is emphasizing on how only the strong survive.
Whitman says the bird complains of his gab and loitering, which is only
symbolic of the bird’s nature, because of course birds don’t have
Whitman shows a great deal of patriotism, and in his poems he writes
about giving back to the earth. In line 52, “I bequeath myself to
the dirt to grow from the grass I love, if you want me again look for me
under your boot soles”, this is showing how when we die, we become part of
the earth. This is one of my favorite selections from this poem, because
it is straightforward. When you die, you are buried, thus you “become
part of the Earth. Whitman says, “look under your boot soles”, meaning
look down at the Earth and you will find what you are looking for.
Whitman emphasizes on nature and the world around us, and explains how we
are all connected in someway.
Song of Myself shows how similar and how different humans and nature
is. Whitman loves the Earth, he loves nature, and he loves being free.
Through his writings he expresses his strong emotions and love for our
What is a sport? A sport is an activity that can be
played both on a team or solo; it pushes you to the limits mentally,
physically, and even sometimes spirituality. A sport pushes your
physical abilities to the max, you compete to win. My sport is boxing and
in the following paragraphs I will tell you everything that you need to
know about it.
What began as a type of combat between Greek and Roman empires in
4000 BC has evolved into one of the most popular sports in history,
practiced in nearly every country throughout the world (Klitschko J). In
earlier times boxing was a brutal sport in which two men fought with their
fists intel one person was left standing. Although the first boxers
primarily fought for fame, the winner was granted gold, livestock or other
trophies. Boxing was a also a popular Roman gladiator event in which both
opponents would box to the death usually naked and only wearing metal
spikes around there hands and wrists.
Boxing is played inside a ring that measures between 16-24 square
feet (AAU Official Handbook). A mouth guard is required for all boxers;
amateurs are required to wear protective helmets. Amateur fights consist
of 3 rounds, professional fights from 4 to 15 rounds.. In most countries,
professional boxing is the more popular version, but the rules vary
because there is no true governing body. Even in the United States, boxing
regulations vary from state to state. Compared to earlier times where
boxers wore nothing but spike covered leather gloves, this seems like a
When I interviewed my sister’s friend Mike who participates in
amateur boxing he said “boxing is a way of life, you either are dedicated
to the lifestyle or your not”. Mike talked a lot about how you have to
train hard everyday, eat a steady diet, and devote all your time to
boxing. Mike said “boxing is not a sport like baseball where you only have
to play a couple of months, boxing is an everyday thing.” When I asked
Mike why he loves boxing so much he said “what other sport are you allowed
to beat the crap out of someone in a ring for 10 minutes”. Mike mentioned
some of the old champions like Ali and Louis, he told me they jumped rope
and trained hours a day to become the best. Mike first started boxing at
the age of thirteen in New York where he grew up as a kid. At the age of
seventeen he moved to Boston where he joined a local gym. Mike got
scouted at the age of nineteen and won his first bout in the amateur
When people think of boxing they think of such heroes as Ali or
Louis, but then on the other hand there is Mike Tyson. Over the years
Tyson has become one of the most controversial topics in boxing history.
From an interview by ESPN’s journalist Max Kellerman, he asked Tyson “If
you win this puts you in the Ali, Joe Louis, Jack Johnson level. How do
you control the fight?” Tyson responded by saying "It's interesting that
you put me in the league with those illustrious fighters, but I've proved
since my career I've surpassed them as far my popularity. I'm the biggest
fighter in the history of the sport. If you don't believe it, check the
cash register (ESPN)." Just from that statement in some sick way it makes
me want to watch him fight, you never know what he is going to do next.
Tyson also said “all my life I have been good at one thing, beating the
sh*t out of people, the good thing is I get paid to do it”. Tyson also
stated “I will throw in my gloves when I get hit and don’t get up”(ESPN).
Richard Hoffer a journalist from Sports Illustrated says “ I could
have one of the funniest jobs in the world, I get to interview legendary
boxers like Ali and Louis, or crazy S.O.B.’s like Mike Tyson”. Hoffer
said, “ever since I was 12 years old, I loved watching boxing matches with
my dad, but now I get to interview boxers up-close”. Hoffer aslo said “
boxing is a way of life for people, usually the pros are born with the
skills of a good boxer”.
Today, boxing is not as nearly as brutal as it used to be. Amateur
boxing now uses gloves without spikes and contests are determined by the
use of a computer, rather than by death. For all its changes, boxing is
relatively unchanged in one way: it is still hand-to-hand, one-on-one
combat, putting a boxer against someone of relative strength and size and
both are left to battle for the prize and glory of a nation. For a sport
that has been around for thousands of years, these changes are small; the
idea of hitting someone until they fall down still captures everyone’s
Boxing almost disappeared as a sport until the late 1600’s, when it
reappeared in England. It’s not fair to say boxing is an American sport,
boxing is participated in all around the world. Modern boxing enjoyed
great popularity in the 1920’ through the 1940’s. But interest began to
incline because of the many economic issues of the times. Today only the
top professional championship bouts draw large crowds. Boxing is a brutal
sport, and it always has been. Famous champions such as Ali or Louis have
captured the hearts of Americans through the last decade. Why many
American love to watch someone get beat up in the ring, I don’t know, but
I’m going to continue to watch it. In a way boxing is a type of stress
relief, we can watch to people fighting each other and pretend we are the