Jerry Li

All Quiet on the Western Front

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The horror of war and the will to survive

They are intoxication, drunken brutality , demoralization, disorder on part of the inferior 

~Florence Nightingale 

    
    Bombs dropped everywhere and the scream arouses. The most unbearable sound, the screeching of the horses. The groaning of the horses were filled with terror and fear. Soldiers scramble everywhere, just to escape the sound. They arrive in a graveyard and duck behind it. Suddenly there is a gas attack. Soldiers screamed everywhere, panicking. The quick thinking ones, including Paul, quickly passed gas masks around. Half an hour passed. Bodies lay everywhere. Blood. Dead bodies. All Quiet on the Western Front is not a book to be enjoyed but to be afraid of. Despite the horror of the war, Paul Baumer and his friends show a strong will to survive. 

    There is always fear lurking around this world. In this war book, Enrich Maria Remarque uses the story of Paul Baumer, a young German soldier, to show the horror one experiences during war. Bombs. War. Gunshots. Aerial Strikes. Everything that Paul experiences during the war traumatizes him. Paul Baumer and his friends no longer believed in youth, but only the war. Paul “already sees how it is already gradually breaking down around him.” Detering, a friend of Paul, went crazy when he saw the cherry blossom tree because it reminded him of his home. He went missing and got executed for betraying his motherland. 

He came back and had a couple of cherry blossoms on his hand… I have a big orchard with cherry trees back home… he nodded but he was far away. When these peasants are excited, ther have a curious expression, a mixture of cow and yearning god, half stupid and half raft… the second morning he was gone.

Detering was reminded of his past and his home when he saw the big cherry blossom trees. After going through so much from the war, he wanted to escape and hide from death. The horror of the war is affecting everyone, every death is cutting “into this thin support and the years waste it rapidly.” With Germany now losing the war, the soldiers too are losing hope that the war is going to end someday. There are only “Trenches, Hospitals, the common grave—there are no other possibilities.”  The war has brought many people down and has caused many people to suffer. However even after experiencing all that, they all had a will to survive through this horrible war. 

    Everyone wants to survive in this world. Paul and his friends show their strong will to survive during the war. Paul finds a strong will to survive even though he wants to escape from this world. He knew that he would not “outlive his chances. But he believes in his chance and trusts his luck.” Paul’s human nature for survival shows while he was reflecting on the war and what happened during the past.

The terror of the front sinks deep down when we turn our backs upon it; we make grim, coarse jests about it, when a man dies, then we say he has nipped off his turd, and so we speak of everything; that keeps us from going mad; as long as we take it that way we maintain our own resistance.

Paul is trying to hide the truth and to convince himself that the war is not actually that bad. The intimate truth and the horror of the war will make Paul and his friends go mad and crazy if they knew. They are doing everything they can to survive in this world. They can’t speak of it. They can’t reflect. They cannot put them into words. They knew that not speaking of it will help to “maintain their own resistance.” One’s chances of surviving this war is only so high, they “will keep them, shut them away until the war is ended.” Paul Baumer and his friends have experienced a lot but can only shut their feelings aways. He wants it to “all fall from him, war and terror and grossness.” 

There are no solutions to the war, there are only endless suffering. 

 


Sukiyabashi Jiro

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Jiro, now 95 years old, is the boss and head chef of a formal 3 star Michelin sushi restaurant despite it’s looks. It is located under a subway station in Tokyo, with no restrooms intact and only has 10 seats. They don’t even accept walk-ins and you have to reserve a month earlier in order to get a spot. However the seafood there is the best. They buy fresh salmon, tuna, shrimp, and many more from the market everyday. The starting price in his restaurant is 40,000 yen(366 dollars). Even former President Barack Obama went to Sukiyabashi Jiro with Japan’s prime minister. Although it is a bit expensive, I would definitely recommend you to go eat at Sukiyabashi Jiro.

 


The Power of Diversity

Diversity of Food

~Jerry Li

Through traveling, I’ve learned to accept different cultures

 

Food is our common ground. A universal experience
~ James Beard 

From a young age, I’ve been accustomed to Asian food. I’ve lived in Shanghai, so I’ve eaten Asian food during my entire childhood. When I arrived in the United States, I was not comfortable with the American culture and food. However, as I grow more mature, I have grown to accept all kinds of different cultures--from the United States to Japan and from Mexico to Great Britain. Through travelling, I’ve been able to learn about all kinds of cultures. 

When I arrived in the United States, I only ate Asian food. However as time passed on, I’ve gotten used to the American culture. In the United States, there were all kinds of different foods that I never tried before,, such as the lobster roll, a signature dish representing Boston. Also in America, everything is slightly sweet, so it took a while  to get used to it at the beginning. I was disgusted with everything around me, and I wouldn't eat anything. However, I quickly adapted to the new culture and learned a lot of things from it. 

During the summer of 2019, a trip to Great Britain made me see a totally new aspect of the world. The lifestyle there is similar to Shanghai but has a unique feeling to it. The lifestyle there feels more luxurious and delicate than the rest of the other cultures. In the morning, the English Breakfast felt full and luxurious;however I couldn't understand why people would eat blood sausage. At first I thought it was disgusting and inedible. At the end of my trip there, I could consume one whole blood sausage. What was especially good was the afternoon tea. The utensils were extremely delicate. The waiter even told me that one of the teapots was worth 1000 pounds. Not only were the utensils beautiful, the pastries were magnificent. I developed a love for these pastries, especially the scones, the muffins, and the bread served with jam and honey. Through this experience I have learned how to enjoy the different cultures.

 Japan was one of the first countries that I visited. Since when I was a little kid, I loved the food there. The street foods were awesome and Japan overall is a very clean and nice place. Sushi, a traditional Japanese dish, however, was one of my least favorite dishes in my childhood. I couldn’t get used to the rawness of the fishes and the slimy flavor to it. However, I later I learned to appreciate and enjoy the Japanese culture and food. I can eat any raw fish now, and especially enjoyed it when dipped in wasabi and soy sauce. 

Traveling around the world and experiencing all kinds of cultures has made me more mature. During my time learning about the culture, I also learned how to appreciate all kinds of foods, no matter what they are. 

Just like James Beard said, “Food is our common ground. A universal experience.” 

 


Bacchanal buffet

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The Bacchanal Buffet is one of the biggest buffet in the world. Although there are thousands of Buffets in Las Vegas, this one stands out the most. There are over 500 dishes in the Bacchanal Buffet and 15 chef’s special dishes each day. This ranges from traditional chinese and Japanese food to Italian pasta. From the freshest seafood to the best beef. This place is a food heaven and I even went to Las Vegas to try it myself.


Bacchanal buffet

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The Bacchanal Buffet is one of the biggest buffet in the world. Although there are thousands of Buffets in Las Vegas, this one stands out the most. There are over 500 dishes in the Bacchanal Buffet and 15 chef’s special dishes each day. This ranges from traditional chinese and Japanese food to Italian pasta. From the freshest seafood to the best beef. This place is a food heaven and I even went to Las Vegas to try it myself.


Kuroko’s Baskeetball

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Kuroko’s Basketball is a sports anime that came out in 2013. Kuroko, the protagonist, is a short boy who has a dream of becoming a basketball player. Although he is short and weak, he is able to use his lack of presence to make amazing passes. If you take your eyes from him, then he will disappear right in front of you. Team Serin was just established last year and they face many challenges throughout the tournament. This show is captivating, interesting, and the animation is one of the best that I had ever seen. Netflix just acquired Kuroko’s Basketball on January 15th. 

I recommend this show to people who are interested in sports. 


Challenges on Zoom

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You should never view your challenges as a disadvantage.

-Michelle Obama 

Everyone has to overcome challenges in order to achieve their goals. As March Break came, Covid hit hard on the United States. As our country went into a lockdown, our school was also shut down, and we had to do zoom classes every day. I had to overcome these challenges with classes everyday.

With classes on zoom, I had to be more independent. Without a teach by my side all the time, I had to spent more time on homework if I didn’t understand the directions correct. Another challenge was staring at the screen for a lot of time. Although Fenn did give us multiple breaks between classes, we still had to spent 4 hours on screen listening to the teacher. After that we had to spent more time doing homework. I would also get distracted and sometimes would not be paying attention. The last challenge was the technology problems in zoom. Sometimes we couldn't hear the teachers, and sometimes the teacher couldn’t hear us. Sometimes we couldn’t even get into the zoom. This made our class go a lot slower with all the technology problems. I had to overcome all these challenges in order to pay attention in class. 

Although I am used to being on Zoom now, I am still a little bit annoyed every time we do zoom classes. From this, I learned that we have to overcome the challenges we face. 


Best Korean food

 

Everyone should try new things

Food is our common ground, a universal experience

-James Beard

One can never eat too much food. I really like Korean food because of its unique flavors and it’s taste. These foods in the videos I think are the best in the capital of Korea, Seoul and it’s a must try. The top ten food in there is what I suggest. From food such as the heartwarming dish Bibimanpap(a rice bowl that contains protein, vegetables, and eggs), to Korean Barbecue (variety of meats with your own grill). 

This video showed me some food that I didn’t even know of even though I am especially fond of Asian food, and I like Korean food the most. Although I have not been to Korea yet, I have tried many Korean foods in the United States. The only thing that I would add to the list is Kimchi, a cabbage that is fermented/salted. I truly enjoy eating Korean food and I hope you do too.


Best dish in Japan

           3. Wagyu

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Wagyu means any breed of Japanese been cattles. It is split into many grades(the better the meat quality is, the better grade they will get). The best grade is A5 and the worst grade being C. Even though you might think that grade C is really bad, it is still very expensive, with the price ranging from 120 dollars to 300 dollars.  When you eat wagyu, you will get your own personal grill where you can cook your meat and will many sauces and spices dipped in. Although wagyu is expensive, I would say it is definitely worth it to try. 

    2. Ramen

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Ramen is a heartwarming noodle soup dish that mainly uses 3 types of noodle:Futomen(fat noodle), Hosomen(thin noodle), and finally Chijiremen(Wavy noodle). Not only does the noodle make the ramen bowl more tasty, the soup also does. The soup is a broth that consists of soy sauce, miso, salt, and tonkotsu pork bone. If you like you ramen spicy, you can also add spice to make it spicy and change the flavor. When you get your ramen, there will be toppings of pork, protein, egg, corn, and seaweed. This dish is one of my favorite and I think it’s a must try. 

    1Sushi

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Sushi is one of the traditional meals that Japanese people eat. This dish dates all the way back to the Tang Dynasty. It is made of makazushi, the rice with the seaweed rolled around, and usually has a single piece of raw fish(almost always fresh) on top. It tastes even better when you dip it in soy sauce or wasabi.