Fight or Flight Moment

Garrett MacKenzie

English 9

Ms. Wade

Fight or flight paper


      The time I fled instead of fought was when I was having recurring nightmares when I was younger. In this nightmare I started by walking down a road with my dad and brother as our WoW characters, then I decided to split off from them. I went down a side street to the left and kept walking until it was dark outside. I then saw a really old house to the right and looked at it intently, soon after that hands trapped me and forcefully led me into the house. When I got into the house it was really creepy, the people that grabbed me let go and I turned around to see that they were the monsters from the movie Monsters Inc. The monsters led me to an old door, and when they opened it there was a dark stairwell going down. When we arrived at the bottom there was a dimly lit room with a furnace and a woman. The woman told the monsters to guard the door to the top, and she maintained a watchful eye on me. This nightmare continued for three nights, and because I didn’t fight it or talk about it, the dream only got worse. It eventually did stop because I built the courage inside the nightmare to escape out through a window in the basement. This was a result of me talking about the dream with my mom, and understanding that it wasn’t that scary. If I had ended up fighting against that nightmare sooner, I would have probably spared myself from remembering it for so long. From this experience I learned to deal with nightmares right after I had them, and I only had one more recurring nightmare after that. 

My Fatal Flaw

Garrett MacKenzie

Fatal Flaw paper

English 9

Nov 5, 2019


     Everyone has a flaw, whether it’s their ego or that they procrastinate, it is there. My biggest flaw is worrying. While this can be helpful sometimes, and is something that can protect me, it is also hard to deal with. The thing I always worry about is health issues, and I think I inherited that from my dad, since he does too. Whether it has to do with myself or sometimes others, if something small happens, I will overreact and think it must be some deadly virus. For example, something that recently was going around was the EEE virus, which plunged me headfirst into heart pounding stress the first time I heard about it. After some research online, I only made my stress levels higher because I read that a group of mosquitoes were tested positive for the virus in my town. When I went back to school the next day, everybody had heard about it, but nobody seemed anywhere near as worried as I was. Only about a dozen people actually contracted the virus, but I still had the irrational fear  of the virus in the back of my head any time I would see a mosquito. As said earlier, worrying about your health can be good because it can lead to saving your life possibly, but worrying too much can put a damper on a good day if you think you have some disease. This is definitely one of my flaws because it does sometimes impact my day, but it has proved useful once when I was coughing a ton and got worried that I might have pneumonia, so we got it checked out and I did. This led to me being less worried about it because it was caught early and it was easily treated. Everybody has one of these “Fatal flaws”, but they aren’t always a bad thing, and if you learn to control them it can help you in very positive ways. 

Adam Aronovitz Talk

How the Odyssey Connects to Global Interactions


Garrett MacKenzie



     This past week in English we had a speaker come, Adam Aronovitz, who was from right around us, but has traveled to over ninety countries. This experience was amazing because he talked to us like a speaker normally would, but then had us do an activity and taught us about the real life applications of that activity. One of the major takeaways I had from this class was that communication is the most important part of global interactions. In the activity that Adam showed us, we were tasked with building a monument without the overbearing help of other countries. When we heard this we assumed that we just had to say no to any help that was offered, but since the other countries didn’t communicate well enough, we assumed they were trying to harm our nation. This connects to the odyssey because it is an example of hospitality and how the Greeks would communicate after they welcomed their guests. If we as a group were more welcoming to other countries, and heard them out, it would have probably ended up better. 

     The second takeaway from this activity for me was that being determined is quite hard but it pays off in the end. When the people of Minia were determined on our project we were able to get it done pretty well, and it was efficient. Since we were determined on our project there were less distractions and we came together as a team. This is comparable to how in the Odyssey Telemachus is determined to complete his quest, and do it in a timely fashion. Since he is determined it makes everything easier and he isn’t distracted by anything that would impede his progress. This is very important because if Telemachus wasn’t set on finding his father, he would most likely not be able to do it.

     The last takeaway I had was that having different perspectives on things is extremely important. When Adam was actually speaking to us, instead of us doing the activity, he touched on the fact that one of the best ways to increase your global competence is to get different perspectives on events. Whether this is through local people, news organizations your family, it is vital to have more than one view on an issue. This is similar to how in the Odyssey Telemachus has only one view about the suitors, which is that they are only there to harm his family. While he is justified in thinking this, the suitors are also just trying to bring happiness to Penelope, and aren’t only there for the riches. If Telemachus has a different perspective on the suitors and they were more respectful towards him, then there wouldn’t be an issue at Odysseus’ house. 

     Adam was a really great speaker, and taught us so much in one short period of time about global interactions. The fact that he is so educated and has traveled to so many places is shocking to me. The Odyssey also has many connections to what we learned, even outside of what I wrote about, and that was interesting to think about. 

How teachers and students can make Ninth grade better

Making Ninth Grade Better

How teachers and students can improve the year


"Children want the same things we want. To laugh, to be challenged, to be entertained, and delighted." - Theodor Seuss


     My Ninth Grade year has been an amazing experience. It has been really fun to be the leaders of the school, but also daunting at some points. The teachers this year definitely treat us with more respect, but also expect a lot better behavior and work from us students. The class has done a pretty good job so far on behavior, but I know that we can do better and make the classes even smoother. The teachers also have been much harsher when it comes to horsing around, and have been somewhat high-strung. This has been one of the main problems I have seen, and if it is fixed the year would be much better. If the teachers were more relaxed about jokes and messing around, I think kids would be more energized in class and be happy to go to class. Although there is the problem that comes with not cracking down on misbehavior, which is kids not being focused and thinking it is the norm to be joking around in class. This problem may occur, and probably will, but when it does that is when the teachers should be strict and give out punishments. I think if the teachers don’t allow any joking around in class then students won’t have any fun and won’t be motivated to learn. Like the quote at the top says, we just want the same things as adults, to laugh, learn and be challenged. 

     One thing the students can do to make the year better in my opinion is to stop complaining about the homework and tests. I know that teachers are supposed to cut down on the amount of homework this year, and they definitely have, but kids still complain about it. This is obviously normal for kids, but since in reality all of us only have at most two hours on a homework loaded night, I think kids don’t have to complain as much. Also tests are a very important part of our learning because then we can see if we actually know how to do the work, and I know that many people say that all tests do is make you memorize things and spit it back out on paper, I would disagree because when you memorize something it is still very valuable to your education. For example, a vocabulary test in our language classes are just memorizing and spitting it back out on the page, but that is still helpful because you will know the words in the future and add them to your vocabulary. 

     This year has been very fun and I don’t think either of the problems I stated are hard to fix, and I hope that this year will only improve from here on. The two problems I stated both had to do with negative behavior from students and teachers, and I think if we as a class can decide that we want to be more positive overall, the solution to both of these problems will come with ease.