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Showing posts from July, 2007

morning writing exercise-writing from a smell

The Vase was of roughly hewn rock, with jagged ends, razor-sharp. Inside the Vase was a large bouquet of gaudy garden flowers, made for show, smelling of commercial success in some retailer across the country. It would have to be across the country—across the sea, more likely—because the Vase’s Owner lived, frugally, upon a remote atoll in the ocean. The Vase did not merit any collectors’ qualities. The Owner simply liked the rough and roguish charm of razor-sharp rock and its juxtaposition with the flowers.
It was daytime when the Owner set out to fish. The Owner, being an fisherman, did not like to fish. What soul who had engaged in forty-eight long years of fishing would like to? The Vase made for an excellent fish-catcher when attached to a rod of any wood. As for the flowers? They made an excellent garland on the sea—the Owner could get more from where they came from.
The Owner’s routine was always the same. He woke up, he fished, he ate, he cleaned the Vase, and he slept. It wa…
(Voledads is the imaginary country I created in school.)

[Set opens in VWTV (Voledads World Television) Studio. Bryant Ethers, the imperious anchor of "Nightly Newsflash" and co-host on "Meet the Media", walks in.]

Shuffles papers.

ETHERS: Welcome to VWTV Nightly Newsflash. Last week, we brought in some IRS, or Interal Reserach System, personnel, to speak with them about the developing story with computer crashes at Aeronautic and Space International Administration. The largest operating organization in space travel, ASIA was devastated by the computer crashes. Today we're speaking with Hester Crola, a representative and spokeswoman for the company that sells the operating system ASIA computers were working with, Ceiling XP. Welcome, Hester.

CROLA: Thank you, Bryant. We've done thorough tests of our operating system, Ceiling XP, which packages fine-tuned surveillance systems, high-speed operations, and automatic save programs embedded in all areas. We've al…
[Typed up from journal]

We just went swimming. More off topic, here are my thoughts on Washington's education system:

Washington State needs higher standards. We are in the lower middle as standards go, meaning many of our students get an easy way out of learning.

We pay for technology yet we hardly ever use it. Some schools have plenty of desktop computers, etc., and yet there are no classes in Internet research skills, until maybe higher grades, by which time a lot of a kid's enthusiasm and flexibility is gone.

We should introduce history, art, and music to classes. Not just cutout art--learning shading, pastel, etc., from an artist, and learning art history. We should also have music history, not just singalongs.

Lastly, improve school food. The current cafeteria is an often unhygienic and dreaded place. Greasy pizza doesn't stimulate the brain as much as...whole wheat bread. Instead of French Fries, how about chickpeas?
JOURNAL [typed up]

Having sadly left this book to its own devices in the whitewashed bookshelf on the left side of my mother's office, I once again take gel pen in hand.

The world is faring oly mildly well. Oh yes, there are the occasional water balloon fights to lift our lethargic spirits, but other than fruit sorbets, blueberry pie, cookies and cream ice cream, and our guinea pigs (Sherlock and Minnie), it is, on the whole, unexciting. there is more al-Qaeda news on CNN. I do not mean to sound either unpatriotic or uninterested but I do admit I wish there was more of a nuance of news. From...Luxembourg, for example. Us United States people are so arrogant in what we report. As a resident of small town Redmond, I might also add most news channels--even sometimes local Seattle ones--do not condescend to even give us weather on their forecasts, much less check how we're doing.

It must be admitted Redmond does not provide very meritable stories. We seem to have uilt the media upon …

A Frequently Asked Question

A question I'm frequently asked about is where to get a publisher. Publishers are many and close between, but an exceptional one I've noticed lately is called LaunchPad, at www.launchpadmag.com. It's a magazine devoted to starting kids off in creating writing and drawing. They're receiving contributions from kids six to twelve. I'd suggest LaunchPad to all kids.

A Summary of Our Life

I must admit, ninety-five is the highest heat I have suffered. As it happens, that was only a few weeks ago in Atlanta (where I appeared on CNN.) It was a program called "Young People Who Rock". We do not have a proper air conditioner anywhere, just a dusty fan in my mom's office that stirs up such a conflagration of noise that its disruption of the heat inferno is more of a disruption to us. Speaking of conflagrations, have you heard the havoc being wreaked by the merciless wildfires? There is one raging in Washington currently, although I don't think it's anywhere near us. Today our monotonous lifestyle grabbed hold of us yet again. We rise at promptly eight-something and proceed to the breakfast table, and this routine is repeated throughout the all-too-hot summer days. We went swimming today. I am able to jump off the diving board, hold my breath for about ten seconds, backfloat, and swim in the deep end.

Women in the Civil War (Class)

To see more of our class activities, go to http://www.seedsoflearning.blogspot.com/
The Civil War expanded women’s responsibilities within the traditional sphere of home and family. Women were forced to manage estates in husbands’ absences, sew bandages and clothes, and nurse soldiers. Even the whitest hands did not hesitate to write to revered friends, brothers, fathers, and cousins fighting in the battle. Women helped raise important funds for troops. Rising prices, invading soldiers, and food shortages did not daunt these women; so remember the ladies.
Many women managed—and protected—property in their husbands’ absences. Women often hid valuables and livestock from the all-too-eager hands of invading soldiers. Mrs. Burge, the wife of a plantation owner, wrote in her diary, “We were just rising from breakfast when Ben Glass rode up with the cry: ‘the Yankees are coming, Mrs. Burge, hide your mules!” Another quote from Mrs. Burge’s diary reads: “The report is that th…

An Entry From My Blurty Blog

We went to Europe in September-October (five weeks) in 2006.

To any ladies and gentlemen out there who have been to Europe and knows what it feels like to get jetlagged, and also those who have not entered that beautiful continent and eaten French crepes and chocolate buns and Italian gelato and pizza, here is another oh-so-tragic--and at times, if you really think so, oh-so-comic-- tale about my unfortunate--and more fortunate-- experiences in and out of Europe. HEATHROW AIRPORT"It was the best of times, it was the worst of times" as I stepped off from our enormous international plane, still feeling slightly queasy from our rather rough landing. I was of course, relieved to be in England after a tiresome day watching T.V. reruns on waxy earphones, attempting to wake up a snoring sister so I could play Twenty Questions, sleeping, waking up to go to the bathroom, coming back, and sleeping again, but I could not say I was feeling my best in that airport either. It was hot, humi…
Thanksgiving is a pretty boring holiday by a lot of people's standards. Almost every American schoolkid knows the origins of Thanksgiving--a bunch of pilgrims came over on a ship, called the Mayflower, came to the New World (U.S.), starved, and were eventually rescued by the Native Americans. There was a feast, some Native American chief brought ninety or so men, and killed five deer, etc. That is the story of Thanksgiving, summarized version. Unfortunately, Thanksgiving seems to be an All-American holiday. Okay, it has roots in the mistreatment and persecution of the pilgrims in England. But it's not creepily ancient like Halloween, with origins steeped in the magical mystery of druids and etc. The one great thing about Thanksgiving is the food. I am not remotely ashamed to say this but the only thing I was pretty much thankful for on Halloween--no excuse me, the only thing I was conciously thankful for--was the great food. I'm always thankful for the fact I have a laptop…

Redmond Derby Days

This Saturday we went to the Redmond Derby Days. The Derby Days are Redmond's annual festival, featuring the Redmond Medical Center Kids' Parade, the Venture Bank Grand Parade, the Microsoft Entertainment Stage, the Bicycle Criterium, free kids' activities, food, beer, and wine garden, Funtastic Carnival, and Fireworks Finale at 10 PM. Not to mention free promotional giveaways, etc. Promotional giveaways included: stickers, temporary tattoos, frisbees, pens, magnets, post-its, pens, bookmarks, magnetic clips, stuffed animals, candy (Starbursts, saltwater taffy, Three Musketeers), free swim passes, pins, and American flags. Each kid on wheels wearing their helmets in the Kids' Parade also got two dollars (in golden John Adams coins) from City of Redmond. The Kids' Parade was rather sluggish. Being our first time participating, we arrived bright and early at 9:15 at the Redmond Medical Center to sign up. We were all in "Anything Goes" group. We waited arou…

Romance Novels

In response to one of my reader’s questions, I believe romance novels are boring and artificial. Although I can’t say I have read many real “romance novels” (even in the depths of lethargy), the tedious, clichéd, unrealistic romance demonstrated in the few I have read have been deplorable.
Romance novels are tedious. The Miss Whatever and Mr. Whatever are involved in a heart-wrenching separation and finally find love…who wants to read about fifty-five pages detailing the melodramatic sobbing of the Whatevers, to find that abruptly, miraculously, the conformist characters are reunited again? It is, in the least, a waste of time.
Romance novels are clichéd. The Miss Whatever and Mr. Whatever are always the same under-developed characters. They are fluorescent lights compared to flora and fauna. Miss Whatever will be the weak, beautiful woman, and Mr. Whatever will be the strong, macho guy. At the end, they will ride off into the sunset or hold hands on the ho…