The Power of Hard Times

An Unfortunate Speech Delay

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“Tough times never last, but tough people do.”Robert H. Schuller

    A person is defined by their reaction to hard times. When I was younger, I had a problem with speech that affected my life tremendously. Until I was seven, I couldn’t pronounce my R’s, I pronounced them as W’s. It affected me greatly because my name begins with an R, so I couldn’t introduce myself. It was incredibly frustrating. On the first day of first grade, I had to introduce myself to my teacher. At the time, it was difficult for me to introduce myself because I had a speech delay. When she asked my name, I told her it was “Wylan”, but I thought that I said “Rylan“, so when she clarified by repeating “Wylan”, I got very upset. We went back and forth like this a few more times and I got incredibly frustrated. It was as if I was speaking in a foreign language that she didn’t understand. Finally, she had the clever idea to ask me how to spell it. For about a year, until I learned how to pronounce my R’s, I introduced myself by saying my name to the best of my abilities, and then pronouncing it. With the help of my teacher, I overcame my speech delay which was causing me a great deal of frustration. If my teacher hadn’t helped me, I would’ve been frustrated every time that I needed to introduce myself. This was the hardest thing that I have ever gone through, and it happened when I was too young to think of a solution on my own. But, I overcame it, with some help, and my life was much better because of it. Hard times are tough to overcome, but they are made easier by asking for help.


The Power of Place

My Deck in Stowe, Vermont

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“Occasionally, I just need to escape from my work”David Macaulay

    Everyone needs a place where time stops. Stowe, Vermont is a place where I can relax and escape from reality. I travel there as often as I can so that I may lie in a lounge chair on my deck, staring at the open field ahead of me and the most vibrant fall foliage in New England. I travel to Stowe every month with my family, and occasionally friends. Despite the three hour drive, I look forward to going every time because I get to relax and escape my busy life. My favorite pastime up there is lying in a lounge chair on our deck, drinking a soda and savoring the view. I am able to take my mind off homework and school. I feel comfortable and free. I also hang out with my family often on the deck. We eat meals, play games and read books on the deck. I jump at every opportunity I get to be on the deck because it’s my special place. Having a place where I can relax has made my life much better. I am able to remove myself from business and problems. I am able to feel comfortable and relax. I am able to enjoy the moment and the beauty of my backyard in Stowe, Vermont. It is essential to have a special place where you can go to take a break and escape your busy life.


Call of the Wild Literary Analysis Essay

Rylan Chandler

Fitzsimmons Freshman English

The Call of the Wild Literary Analysis Essay

October 23rd, 2018

 

The Law of the Wild and The Man-Dog Relationship 

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“Dog is man's best friend.” — King Frederick of Prussia

    Buck and Spitz circle each other, waiting for an opening. Spitz strikes, which takes Buck off-guard. Buck can’t stop Spitz’s quick attacks and is incapable of penetrating Spitz’s strong defense. After taking numerous, small hits from Spitz, like a body punch in boxing, Buck finds an opening and attacks, breaking both of Spitz’s legs. The tides have turned and Spitz knows he is done for, then Buck delivers the knockout punch. In The Call of the Wild, by Jack London, Buck has to learn the law of the wild, but can’t survive without the help of a man. This is One of my favorite books because it has strong, enticing themes and a great story. 

 

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The Power of Passion

The Greatest Sport on Earth
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“Passion is energy. Feel the power that comes from focusing on what excites you.” — Oprah Winfrey

    Passion keeps life exciting. I have enjoyed my passion since I was three years old. In my first two years, my dad was sorely disappointed because I wanted nothing to do with sports. When I was three, he introduced me to soccer and everything changed. It was a U4 (four years or younger) soccer game and I had never touched a soccer ball before. Everyone was clumping around the ball, kicking at it like their life depended on it. I didn’t know what I was supposed to be doing, so I was daydreaming at midfield. In a flash, the ball was accidentally kicked to me. I knew enough to know that I should kick the ball at the minuscule PUG nets, but that was my entire knowledge of the game of soccer. The ball rolled into me and stopped, giving me a perfect opportunity to kick the ball. I swung my leg at the ball and made good contact. The ball rolled into the net for a goal. That was the moment when I found my passion. I have continued to play soccer avidly and I intend to play in the future, even as an adult. I have strived to become better through hard work and practice because it’s exciting. Soccer has challenged me to become better, physically and mentally. Not only do you have to better your skillset, you have to make intelligent, split-second decisions. A passion should entertain and excite you, but also make you strive to become better. This is what soccer has become for me. 


The Power of Family

The Only Thing That Matters

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“Family is not an important thing. It's everything.” — Michael J. Fox

 

    The only things that matter in life are love and family. Without my family, my life would be a blank canvas. My family provides me direction in life. They teach me right from wrong; what to do and when to do it. They provide me with magnificent adventures to make my juvenescence the best it can be. For my birthday, I was gifted a pair of Celtics playoff tickets and I could take anyone that I wanted. I had a tough decision to make: I could bring a friend, or I could bring a family member. While pondering my options, I realized that the way to make the experience special, and one to remember would be to go with my dad, who I’ve been sharing my love of sports with since I was a little kid. When the day of the game came, my dad and I were ready to go. We were hoping to see the Celtics clinch a spot in the Conference Finals by beating the Philadelphia 76ers. The stadium was electric as the game started and we immediately saw the tension between the rival teams. The best and most memorable part of the game was the chants from the crowd. The best of them was when we chanted, “F*** the Process!” It went on for minutes at an astoundingly high volume. Almost all of the 18,000 people were yelling. We ended up winning the game. It was a great moment to be able to witness the game, but what made it special was having my dad with me. Going to the game with my dad made a lifetime memory for both of us. It was bound to be an amazing night, but experiencing it with my dad made it special and a fond memory. It brought us closer together, and we now go to a few Celtics games together every year. Doing things with my family aren’t always my idea of a fun time, but I do them anyways because having a good relationship with family is of the utmost importance. When I found this opportunity to do something with my family that I find compelling, I jumped at the opportunity and had a blast. Experiences and adventures are made fun by doing them with your friends, but doing them with your family makes them special.


The Call of the Wild Literary Reflection

The Law of the Wild

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“Extinction is the rule. Survival is the exception.” — Carl Sagan

    The law of the wild is inexplicable to those who haven’t experienced it. In the book, The Call of the Wild, by Jack London, Buck has to adapt to the Canadian tundra. Buck is kidnapped from his home and shipped up the west coast to Seattle. He is forced into the role of a sled dog where he has to adapt or die.  

    Buck was living a posh life in Santa Clara Valley when he was unexpectedly kidnapped by his owner’s gardener. He was then sold and brought up the coast to Seattle where he met his first driver. He was immediately beaten senseless which gave him a sense of how hard his new life would be. He survived the tough journey from Skaguay to Dawson and back, unlike most “Outside” dogs. He became accustomed to the harsh enviroments, but had a big issue with the lead dog. Spitz. Buck started to openly defy Spitz and it was clear that there would be a fight to the death, kill or be killed. “He must master or be mastered; while to show mercy was a weakness. Mercy did not exist in the primordial life. It was misunderstood for fear, and such misunderstandings made for death. Kill or be killed, eat or be eaten, was the law; and this mandate, down out of the depths of Time, he obeyed.” When that fight eventually came, Buck struggled at first, but eventually rallied to beat, and kill, Spitz, a native husky. The moment that Buck defeated Spitz was the moment when Buck mastered the law of the wild.

    The Call of the Wild was a great book to start the year with. It was quite short, so we were able to move on from it quickly, but it was also a challenging read with many words that I was unfamiliar with. I thoroughly enjoyed the story and found it inspiring. I was inspired by the fact that Buck had the grit to survive and thrive in the harsh Canadian tundra where most of the other “Outside” dogs couldn’t. I love to hear and learn about characters overcoming adversity to success, and that’s what this book is all about.

    Many people think that they know what the law of the wild is, but nobody truly knows until they’ve experienced it firsthand.


A Rough Start

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“The beginning is the most important part of the work.” — Plato

    Last year, the New England Patriots fell lost the Super Bowl. They had the highest odds to win a Super Bowl in NFL history. Everyone believed that they would make it back for a third straight season. 

    In their first game of the regular season, the New England Patriots soundly defeated the Houston Texans 27-20. The Patriots blew out the Texans through the first three quarters, but the Texans mounted a small comeback to make the game 27-20. The Texans were an elite team last year until their quarterback, Deshaun Watson, got injured. Patriots fans across the country were feeling confident in their team. The Patriots biggest test of the season was the upcoming week. It would show who the best team in the AFC (American Football Conference) truly is. 

    The Patriots were matched up with the Jacksonville Jaguars, the team that played the Patriots in the AFC Championship last year. The Patriots barely squeezed through that game winning 24-20 to advance to the Super Bowl. Patriots fans were confident, but their team let them down. Not only did the Patriots lose, they were blown out. They never stood a chance and the Jaguars didn’t even have their star running back who pulled his hamstring the week prior. They lost 31-20, although they really lost 31-10 because they scored ten points in “garbage” time, which is when the game is just about over, and the other team has stopped playing to the best of their ability. While it quieted Patriots fans’ hopes for the year, the game didn’t silence them. The Patriots were still in contention for the Super Bowl, because they lost to another great team.

    In Week 3, the Patriots faced the Detroit Lions, a team that was having a very bad start to the season and was destroyed by the Jets, one of the worst teams in the league. It seemed like an easy victory. When the game started, Patriots fans knew that something was wrong. The offense went three and out on the first two drives, and the defense was crumbling. The Patriots couldn’t run the ball and the Lions were all over the normally superlative passing game. The Lions were able to run the ball well and had their first 100 yard rusher since Thanksgiving, 2013, nearly five years ago. The Patriots were dysfunctional on offense and defense, and stood no chance against the Lions who were one of the worst teams in the league.    

    For years skeptics have been asking the question, “Is Tom Brady slowing down,” and they have always been proven wrong. Now, after two terrible showings, people are asking the question again. If the Patriots can’t turn their season around quickly, they’re on a slippery slope to becoming one of the worst teams in the league. As Patriots fans, all we can do is hope that they can turn it around against the Miami Dolphins, who are undefeated, next week.


The Beginning of an Era

“We live in a world that relies on technology” — James Wan

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    “Harry, there’s only two people left, we can win this!”

    “Yeah, let’s destroy these noobs!”

    “I think that I see them, North.”

    “Yup, let’s go they’re bots.”

    “I’m starting to lag a lot!”

    “Same this is weird.”

    “Oh my God, my game just crashed!”

    “Same what the heck happened I had two ping?”

    “We were about to win!”

    “Yeah what the heck!”

    “That’s so annoying.”

    “Facts Billy, now the other team won.”

    “Let’s start another game, we can get a win.”

    “Yeah.”

    “My computer won’t turn on!”

    “Yeah same it’s as if I don’t have any power.”

    “Yeah, the lights went out! This is weird, Harry!”

    “Let’s go upstairs and check everything out.”

    “I’ll go to the circuit box and see if I can restart the lights.”

    “Ok, sounds good.”

    “It’s not working!”

    “My parents seem to be having the same problem we are, even the WiFi isn’t working.”

    “At least we have cellular...wait, why isn’t it working?!”

    “Yeah I can’t even turn my phone on!”

    “I suppose we’ll have to use pen and paper for homework. I wonder if other kids are having this problem.”

    “We should go and find out, let’s ride our bikes over to Daniel’s house, because he’ll definitely be home.”

    “That’s a pretty good plan! If he doesn’t have technology either, I’m going to be so mad!”

    “Same, let’s go!”

    “He doesn’t have power either! It must be an issue with all of technology.”

    “Holy crap, does this mean there is no technology anywhere?”

    “I think so.”

    “I don’t know how I am going to be able to live.”

    “We’re all gonna die!”

    “Facts.”

    “My life seems meaningless now, I don’t know what to do without my phone!”

    “Yeah, without Fortnite what are we going to do?”

    “This must have been what it was like when my parents were kids!”

    “Yeah, I almost feel bad for them.”

    “Man, they’re really old!”

    “Yeah I know right, I can’t believe there was a time without electronics.”

    “How did they even have fun?!”

    “Honestly I have no idea?”

    “I guess, maybe, we can go outside. I haven’t done that in a while.”

    “Sure, maybe that’ll be fun.”

    “What do we do outside?”

    “I don’t know; we could play soccer, maybe shoot some hoops.”

    “I wonder if there’s air conditioning outside.”

    “Yeah, without air conditioning summers are going to be the worst, hopefully we still have it.”

    “How am I going to communicate with my other friends? I don’t know about this man! This is scary.”

    “I know, our parents are gonna say, ‘just write them a letter or something’, but honestly that’s stupid.”

    “Really stupid.”

    “I guess we are going to have to get used to this until the world finds some way to fix this, I hope they find it soon.”

    “It’ll be the start of a new era! This is gonna suck!”


An Unforgettable Experience

Making My Own Adventure

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“Life is either a great adventure or nothing.” — Hellen Keller

    This summer was the busiest summer I have ever had. In total, I was only home for six days. I had a lot of fun trips and new experiences, but the pinnacle of my summer was a trip that I had in late July. It was the first time that I ever went out of the country without my parents. While the first half of my summer was filled up with fun experiences, the entire time I couldn’t wait for my big trip. It occupied my thoughts and dreams for months.

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