You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, 'I lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.'
When we read The Call of the Wild in the fall, I thought that it was a challenging book. This being said, I could keep up with the reading and understand the basic points with out a overwhelming effort. It was one of the toughest books I have read but became enjoyable because of the great writing (after you get used to it) and universal themes. I am currently about thirty chapters into Moby Dick and Call of the Wild seems like a cake walk. It looks as if The Call of the Wild was just a dulled down version of Moby Dick. I can see the same kind of life lessons coming out of Moby Dick , the same captivating plot. It only took me a couple of chapters to get used to The Call of the Wild I was also more drawn to the writing and the plot I’m that book. I am still not truly comfortable with Moby Dick. The writing can be so sluggish that it takes me a couple minutes to finish one page, the vocab in the book has been so challenging that I have to look up tons of words, this has been extremely troublesome for me because I usually and very comfortable with vocab and having to change my approach to reading has been hard. The easiest way to understand the book that I have found has been listening. My routine whenever I have to read is to read the shmoop then listen to the book while I read along. This has helped me to go slow and just try to soak in as much information as possible. The Call of the Wild ended up being worth reading, I will try to keep a positive attitude about Moby Dick and hope for a positive result
What makes a life the best it can be? A life lived gaining knowledge and being wise or a life untroubled by outside issues, only worrying about your happiness. In an ideal world I would choose to be wise and happy, to be able to have knowledge and still be content seems like a great life to me, but if I could only choose one it would have to be wise. In my opinion being wise does not translate to being sad. Being wise opens so many doors for you and can help lead a happy lifestyle. If you are ignorant you can never really takes steps to be wise. Being happy is static, while it is a state of contentment you are not moving forward and seeking out happiness. Being happy is not risk, but it is also not a full way to live. On the other hand being wise is a journey, with every step being complex and bringing new challenges. These challenges can bring sadness and you are not shielded from sadness like you are when ignorant but there are opportunities to be happy during a life lived wise. Happiness is more enjoyable when you know what it feels like to be sad, when you’ve earned your happiness rather than just sitting and seaking out easy happiness. I would rather risk sadness than know that there are things that I don’t know because I decided to play my life safe. Working for happiness. That is what makes life worth living, overcoming challenges not knowing what tomorrow will bring but being excited for it.
A defining experience in life is traditions. In A Child’s Christmas In Wale’s, Dylan Thomas artfully paints a picture of his childhood Christmas traditions. His family, like so many others, forged strong traditions at Christmas. Although he lived a modest life, his family’s traditions were a powerful fabric of his character. Thomas, brings us into his small house in Wales during Christmas time, we see his beloved family members and there distinct personalities and relationships with him.
“Always on Christmas night there was music. An uncle played the fiddle, a cousin sang "Cherry Ripe," and another uncle sang "Drake's Drum." It was very warm in the little house. Auntie Hannah, who had got on to the parsnip wine, sang a song about Bleeding Hearts and Death, and then another in which she said her heart was like a Bird's Nest; and then everybody laughed again; and then I went to bed. Looking through my bedroom window, out into the moonlight and the unending smoke-colored snow, I could see the lights in the windows of all the other houses on our hill and hear the music rising from them up the long, steady falling night. I turned the gas down, I got into bed. I said some words to the close and holy darkness, and then I slept.”
Traditions don’t have to be grand, to have a tradition all you need is people you love doing something with you. I too spend Christmas with my family, I can attest to the power of tradition, the power of enjoying a modest moment with each other. Thomas’s writing is so powerful in part because of his use distinct images and actions.
If you can’t be there, feel there. Thomas’s use of imagery truly makes you attached to the writing and scene itself. I can relate to the excitement of Christmas time as a kid and even though I have never been to Scotland I feel there because of his perfect imagery and action. Thomas describes walking through the streets of wales with his best friends.
“The silent one-clouded heavens drifted on to the sea. Now we were snow-blind travelers lost on the north hills, and vast dewlapped dogs, with flasks round their necks ambled and shambled up to us, baying "Excelsior.”
. This scene is one almost everyone can relate too. You and your friends alone together. No matter how you lived your experience like this, by using imagery and action he drives the point home and really hits the soft spot of memory. Through the experience of traditions and using imagery and action, Thomas wrought a story so relatable and good that it became a worldwide hit
Christmas is not just a holiday but a spirit. I can remember almost all the Christmas I have lived. While the traditions my family have used have changed over the years and with different campuses, the spirit in which we approach Christmas has not. For some years now the whole family have made it down to Newbury Street in Boston before Christmas. It is one of the things that I look forward to for the whole year. The one hour drive into Boston is filled with agrument about where to go, what to eat and who was buying what. In this state of confusion, conflict and annoyance, I am filled with joy. Finally everyone is together, I feel complete. We walk through snow, wearing pea coats that we only wear this one time a year and window shop. My mom and sister drag us through clothes shop, until we beg to leave. We walk through the Basic triangle, where Tad, Hans and I swear every other girl is the exact same as Lilly. We stop at Brooks Brothers and my dad and I look at fancy clothes. The day ends after dinner at a Starbucks across from Brooks Brothers, we drink hot chocolate and revel in each other’s company. On those chilly December afternoons, I am the happiest boy in the world. That day I am brought back to Middlesex School, to when we were always all together. This small trip means family: my family with all its perfect imperfections, support and love.
Every family finds their traditions
Whether meeting friends far or near
The spirit stays the same
For some it is about reunions
Remembering their special people and moments
While others soak in the moments of the present
To be stored for conversations about the past
Some have deep traditions to look forward to
Forged during thanksgiving past
Others like raking leaves away to clear the feild
Make their own traditions
All find a moment in their heart
A moment to love life
A moment to be truly alive
With the people that make life worth living
And take a moment
To be thankful
It’s Not the Getting Down, It’s the staying down
Success is not final, failure is not fatal; It is the courage to continue that counts.
You can’t learn without some level of hardship. Honestly in the relation to the world I have lived a very easy life but I still have learned from the hardships I have faced. Going into the year last year I was very excited to get my shot at making the varsity soccer team. I felt well prepared and like I was entitled to the position, as hard as it is to say that it is true and probably one of the main reasons I didn’t make the team. Throughout the tryouts my confidence decreased a little bit. Having the tryouts over three days is a long time to have to worry about the team. I was in the tryout process with many of my close friends and I didn’t want to fail in front of them. My entitled attitude was catching up to me as I had not played by best in the first days. When it came time for final cuts Star told me that I didn’t make the team. This was a crushing blow to my moral, I would have to sit and watch as my friends got to play on a team that I desperately wanted to play on. For some time I let the rejection keep me down, I sulked and played worse because of it. At some point I realized that if I really wanted to be the kind of kid who made varsity teams in the future that I had to push through the hard times. I started to work harder motivated by my defeat. By the time the summer was over this year and tryouts loomed I felt like I was playing the best soccer of my life. Instead of going in with a mindset of complacency I took the challenge of the new year in two hands and took the spot for myself. I have now learned through painful defeat never to feel entitled, especially if you really want something.
Since I was little, this is my favorite place to come to...
Everyone has a special place they like to go to, it is human nature to be drawn to somewhere. For me a place of significance should trigger a visceral emotional reaction. For all my life I have been involved with high school sports, growing up in a dorm and around students it has always been something special to see a student you consider a brother or sister go out and play a sport that you also love. I can still feel the adrenaline rushing through me as Amadu got the ball in a playoff game, watching Jack handle a puck on the blue line or Max score a clutch goal. I can also feel the tear wrenching heart break of losing against South Kent or Cushing. Still, no matter result I was faithful to the team and to my friends. Every chance I got I would be on the sidelines or on the boards cheering on my brothers. Through rain, snow or shine I was always there, loyal. On the sidelines of LA sports I have learned important life lessons. I have learned what it means to be a team, what it means to care more for your teammate than for yourself and learned what it means to be family outside of your family. Next year I will try my best to step onto the other side of the sideline and become that positive presence for another kid. I want to be someone like Amadu, Jack or Max; someone who embodies what it means to be a team, someone who cares more for my teammates them myself and someone who’s part of a family.
The Call of the Wild Essay
November 2, 2018
Connections between man and beast
If you strike that dog again, I’ll kill you
[John Thornton, Call of the Wild]
Buck tried fruitlessly to get up but was beaten back down by Hal. Buck started to lose feeling in his body and his mind drifted away from his bloody bruised body. Then like an angel from above John Thornton threw himself in front of the blows shielding Buck from danger. Thornton then sprung, throwing Hal to the ground. From that instant on Buck became connected to Thornton through a bond in their mutual primordial beasts.
Passion Drives Happiness
Passion is energy. Feel the power that comes from focusing on what excites you.
- Oprah Winfrey
A life without passion is a life not worth living. I am never happier than when I’m playing soccer. On crisp fall days or in summer showers there is one constant at every opportunity I have I bring my brother, Hans outside and play soccer with him. This fall has been extra-special because for the first time Hans and I get to play on a competitive team together. Walking out to the turf for our first game I was filled with nervous excitement, it was my first game as the starter for the team and also the first game that I would be able to play with my little brother. I desperately wanted both of us to do well and that translated into tiny butterflies slamming around my stomach. In a flash we were in our pregame huddle, our fearless leader, Star made his final adjustments and as we took the field Hans and I stopped and did a handshake we had practiced over the summer. From the second that was over I knew that his game was out of my control, all I could do now was play and best game and try to put the team and Hans in a position to win. About 15 minutes into the game a ball went careening off the opposing teams post and right into the path of Hans, my heart skipped a beat hoping he wouldn’t miss the golden opportunity, without a hitch he deposited the ball into the back of the net. As a brother I relived him playing with me on the fields at LA and realized how far he had come, powered by pride I jumped in the air yelling my praise from the other side of the field. Sharing something you love with someone you love are perfect ingredients for a passion sandwich, now I get to enjoy eating it.