Author Archives: Timothy

Class Notes For 10/24

Announcements:

  • People’s choices due tomorrow, 10/25 before 12:00 am.
  • Professor Harris joins us this Thursday, 10/26 as we finish up the final parts of ‘Station Eleven’
  • Blog #1 on ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ parts I-IV is due on Thursday, 11/1 
  • We begin Reading ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ in class on 11/2

Essay #1: Due 11/14.

  • TOPIC QUESTION: WE CHOOSE OUR OWN
  • ASSIGNMENT: ARGUMENTATIVE THESIS DRIVEN ESSAY (No Research, straight from ‘Station Eleven’ only)
  • Along with Essay#1, a cover letter about our writing processes (1 Page, double-spaced) is required
  • Grades are not solely based on the final product, but also the final process 
  • MLA Format
  • 5-6 Pages
  • Issues Blogging? https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/belli-f2017-eng2001/blogging/
  • Issues with Assignment? https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/belli-f2017-eng2001/essay-1/ *Our homework for tonight*
  • Next week Tuesday, 10/31 Draft #1 is due (Bring 4 Printed copies) 
  • Allowed to use parts from our previous blog’s on ‘Station Eleven’ as an addition to our Essay’s
  • Do not summarize, analyze!
  • You are recommended to see the professor to review your essay draft
  • Essay #1 & Essay #2 are each 20% of your grade

The Flu Caused Chaos

In parts 7, 8, & 9 of  “Station Eleven” By St. John Mandel, we see that throughout the majority of these last few chapters that many people who survived the Flu are dealing with their personal conflicts. For example, they are focused on surviving to maintain stability. Also, whether or not it served a purpose to explain to the children born in the “New World” the difference from before and now, and dealing with other people who are in defense mode and having the belief that their harsh actions are justified because it is for a better purpose. Nowadays, people are focused on survival, but others point significance towards having consideration for those who were killed by the flu, those who once worked to keep the world going round and round. This makes it seem as though the narrator has a personal belief on the matter because of the word “Consider” being consistently used.

Life after the Flu, seeming as though it is a fight day to day because of all of the new conflicts produced from the Flu Clark makes it his business to keep survival the main priority considering he “worked all day at details of survival, hauling the water to the restrooms to keep the toilets operational” (258). Clark seems to feel the need to keep himself busy because life after the Flu seems so unorganized and the only way to head in the direction of hope is to keep himself busy working on something he for sure knows will work towards a new and better life. Based on Clarks efforts to stay busy it can be inferred that this was one of his conflicts, digging himself out of the whole the Flu created labeling surviving one of his main priorities.

McKinley who owned a school had a daughter who “came home crying that afternoon, she wanted to live as long as other people used to” (269). Now as many can logically make the assertion that children were being born post Flu even if in small numbers, one must keep in mind that these children may take the news many different kinds of ways, in this case being a negative response. The daughter sees it as a disadvantage of being alive since she is expected to live a shorter amount of time than usual. This right here makes sense as to why they were over thinking whether to tell the kids or not making this significant because based on whether they tell the kids the news or not depends on how they will or will not endure it leaving room for unexpected thoughts, or even actions.

During the end of the novel, it is said to “Consider the white gloves on the hands of the woman who inserted the snow globes into boxes” (255) as repetition occurs through the usage of the word “Consider”. This to me truly stands out because it shows a sense of being grateful and showing respect towards those who died, showing that their hard work to keep the world moving as long as it did will never be forgotten. This is significant because one would expect people to focus on surviving the Flu, but there are actually people out there who actually remind themselves of people who did such amazing things showing that not everyone in the “New World” is selfish and that the Flu will not easily wipe out such important memories.

Despite the conflicts which described, there were others which seemed to be more life-threatening than any other, the prophets. These are a dangerous group of people who take it to whatever extent it needs to be taken to even death in order to get what they want. Although their actions seem truly radical, it is said they believe that “all of your sufferings, it is all apart of a greater plan” (290) as they kept a smile on their face. This right here reminds me of “The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas” By Ursula LeGuin. This is because, in this novel “StationEleven”, the prophets believed that what seems negative is in reality for a better purpose the same way that in “The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas” the child locked in a basement (negative) was in order to keep everyone else alive (positive). 

I also believe that both the prophet smiling and such attractive building in which the small child was put permanently in are both very similar in which they both try to give off a positive impression although the reality within both of them are harsh and cause physical damage to innocent people who just want to live their lives. Throughout this novel, I have learned that although boredom may occur in life because of so many different things to appreciate to always attempt appreciating those things as much as possible because there can be an unexpected time in which a normal life could disappear causing you to wish you were grateful for those very same things that are now within absence. Another thing I learned from this is that times may change but it is up to you to decide what your purpose is and if you actually wanna adapt to the new lifestyle. Despite your decision, life will do its job, move on. 

Writing Improves Social And Study Skills

Why do I write? Well, to be quite frank, there are multiple reasons as to why I write. Now if I may be one hundred percent honest without judgment, I write mainly because it is a ‘requirement’ to advance academically. I find writing to not be one of my personal interests. I happen to consistently wonder off into space whenever I am writing or even reading. It seems as though writing to many people is to free one’s thoughts, convey a message to someone, or to even improve language or complex use of vocabulary. Although I honestly do not like writing, I have learned to accept the reality of it and I have learned that even if I do not like writing that in doing so there are indirectly other perks to it. For example, when I am writing it translates to me building better structure when speaking. Instead of speaking on a topic in a fast pace, I find it easier to speak with more relevance to whatever it is that I have to say. Another perk will be that when writing study notes for a test it is more likely you’ll remember whatever it is written because instead of just mentally reading it, you are also physically partaking in writing which increases the chances of you remembering what was written/said rather than what was just said. Considering I struggle with tests at times, this seems to be very useful. Now, I know it seems more logical for reading to influence writing. However, when writing I have found the significance towards re-reading my work. This is because most of the time the first draft of an essay or writing assignment is usually all scrambled with full of ideas all over the place. Hence why re-reading your work is important to me because when doing so, you find errors in structure, vocabulary, punctuation, and content. This can lead to better writing skills and then when it comes to reading? It’ll be a piece of cake because you can read the story with the acknowledgment of structure and content and as a result better understand the story.

 

The Struggle To Forget

In “Station Eleven” Parts 4, 5, and 6 by EMILY ST. JOHN MANDEL, this novel shifts from setting to setting causing one to have to pay attention and make the connection between pages in order to make sense of it as a whole. It describes how life was before and after the Georgia Flu. Life seemed limitless before the flu as everyone was already used to regular survival skills and did not see it as a privilege. However, once the Flu came about the value of life itself increased due to those who were left seeing it as almost impossible to forget life when it seemed normal hence why the very few of the people who were left saw the aftermath as not enough. Arthur, although confirmed dead the same day of the spread of the Flu had a very strong impact on those around him, more so because of his famous characteristics and the paparazzi. There is no one who could have predicted for life to be the way it is after the Flu has done its damage, worldwide.

Within the first half of the novel, the traveling symphony in order to survive comes together to be stronger as one. This is due to surviving becoming essential because people seem to be more in competition. It is said that “we are always looking for the former world”(130) which means that they are always looking for signs of life, signs of people who are left, and when day to day life wasn’t hard to live. In other words, life before the flu. This to me stood out because it symbolizes their motive for life after the Flu which is the more life shapes away from social norms, the harder it is to envision it causing one to have the motive to find the missing parts of life which are the lack of people, communication, and technology.Therefore, based on life becoming harder to live, it became common for those who were left to go in search for life because it seemed more stabilized and more within their comfort zone.

In the second half of the novel, life before and during the Flu was heavily talked about. During these times it is said “I almost wanted to lock the door behind us”(199) right when Kirsten and August were ready to head out. In other words, due to the world changing and becoming extinct the value of nature and basic day to day activities become more significant and tempting to Kirsten. Based on the aftermath of the Flu, day to day activities become less usual because now society is upside down and there is no Guidance to advance in any form what so ever. For example, this is heavily revealed when it is said that for the symphony it “seemed a difficult and dangerous way to survive especially when they were turned away at gunpoint from hostile places.”(119). The symphony enters another groups territory and their life being put at risk. Life itself is no longer safe and people seem so unsatisfied now considering all they think of was life before the Flu.This right here caught my attention because this signified that based on there no longer being any guidance for the advancement of society, life becomes more dangerous because no one is there to correct chaotic acts and everyone is now so hostile making life more of a challenge.

In a world so big, full of different dilemmas, and memories it is always tough to remember the little things that life gives us only until it is swiped out of our hands. This, unfortunately, is when we will finally realize that when you put down the things we nowadays value most such as cell phones and technology, life will always change right in the midst of a moment and it is always a eat or be eaten situation. The moral of these three chapters to me is that we value things most when we finally realize that it is not within our reach anymore. We take advantage of things we endure daily and reminisce on the things we let leave our fingertips whether it was voluntarily or involuntarily. Life is life, and we have control but to a certain extent.

 

 

Worry About The Right Things At The Right Time!

In “Station Eleven” By Emily St. John Mandel (Part 1), survival skills are necessary in order to maintain stability, as well as the need to focus on what is front of one, not behind. Jeevan was devastated by what happened to Arthur. However, he knew he had to focus on the survival or both him and his brother, Frank.In the beginning, Arthur, the “king” in act 4 of “King Lear” collapsed which took place in the theater causing his loved ones as well as those who neutrally knew him to be truly saddened which shows his situation is affecting the lives of those who know him. Throughout the novel, it is indicated that Arthur is not only significant within the act itself but also in real life, where people such as Jeevan felt guilt towards the permanent outcome that took place. Due to Arthur’s permanent absence, nothing within the Elgin theater seems as though it’ll ever be the same. It is very common for Jeevan, the main character within the novel considering every event centralizes him to shy away from people, especially at the risk of being exposed to high amounts of attention. This novel truly is an attention grabber to me based on its ability to force me to want to know more about Arthur personally because the perspectives on Arthur were all from people he knew, not him. Also, the novel was set up in a way in which Arthur nearly starts off with the tragedy causing the rest of the story, for the most part, to be based on that tragedy or at least in connection to it.The same way we as humans go through tragedies that can sometimes mentally affect the mind and at the end always have to focus on what is in front of us is the same way Jeevan had to focus on what needed to be done although he knew deep down inside he felt pity for Arthur.

In the beginning of the novel, the tragedy in which took place was when “He stumbled”(Mandel,3) and when “Arthur wasn’t breathing”(Mandel,4). Arthur, the one who played the role of a king collapsed in the middle of an act and was running out of oxygen slowly but surely. This signals the idea that Arthur may have suffered a heart attack. This is significant because this is what led to the way Jeevan began to feel and think. For example, “The unfairness of it, his heart pumping faultlessly while somewhere Arthur lay cold and still” (Mandel,11). In other words, Jeevan felt it was unfair for him to have a heart that does not take any fault while Arthur lays somewhere, dying. This signified that Jeevan is a very caring and unselfish person because although he did nothing wrong in connection with the death of Arthur, he feels as though it is unfair that he is alive while Arthur is nearly dying. In order for someone to feel the pain of someone else as if they were that person even though it is not their responsibility, one must legitimately be a caring person. This connects to the overall argument considering this is what Jeevan had to take his mind off in order to focus on surviving.

Surviving became a challenge to the people in Toronto including Javeen when Javeen gets a text from Hou, who works at the ICU for sick patients stating that there was a flu going around and that it was”The fastest incubation period I’ve ever seen”. This means that this flu is the fastest that has ever spread from one person to another. As a result, the significance for survival is high because Javeen then prepared to protect himself from the flu since he “filled one of the oversized shopping carts with as many cases and bottles as he could fit” (Mandel,21). Javeen began shopping for food, and drinks which go back to show that although situations may affect one mentally, they have to move on. In this case specifically, however, Javeen had to accept Arthurs death in order to focus on surviving which in this case was staying with his brother. This connects to the overall idea considering buying a whole bunch of food and staying in his brother’s house was his way of surviving.

The ending of part 1 was the piece that stood out the most. In the last page, it is said that in the theater, there will be “No more reading and commenting on the lives of others, and in doing so, feeling slightly less alone in the room.No more avatars”. (Mandel,32). This to me truly stood out because when reading this it made me think about Javeen and his reason for making it seem as though he had little to no knowledge of the death of Arthur. Maybe, just maybe it was to not receive so many questions out of the curiosity of Arthurs death, causing Javeen to feel like the main focus. This is a valid point considering it is said within the novel that “he didn’t like crowds very much” (Mandel, 8). This shows why Javeen possibly didn’t say anything because due to him not enjoying the company of many people at once, it would make sense for him to give little to none reliable information on Arthur’s death causing everyone else to see Javeen as equal as them and as a result him not feeling overcrowded. This is significant in comparison to the thesis considering that he acts as though he knows nothing about Arthur’s death, which signifies him shying away because he knows the outcome if he were to have explained what occurred. it’d be a non-stop interview, exactly what Javeen opposes indirectly.

Overall, this novel is about Arthur dying and how it lead to the theater creating so many new changes. How the tragedy of Arthur brought about so many new precautions added to the theater to possibly prevent the same situation from occurring again. Also, it is about Javeen and the way he goes about prioritizing his main focus points. For example, he was saddened by the death of Arthur but decided to put his primary focus on surviving through the flu. This novel to me sends a message to the outside strictly declaring that one prioritizes their main worries in comparison to what it will take to survive physically. To me, Javeen was one who always put others before himself because when Arthur died Arthur was all that was on his mind and the unfortunate reality of it. Then, when came to fight the flu his main focus was him and his brother getting through this flu without actually catching it. Throughout the story not once does the narrator discuss Javeen expecting credibility or attention but in fact, discusses how unselfish and genuin Javeen actually is.

There Will Come Soft Rains

In “August 2026: There Will be Soft Rains By Ray Bradbury (1950)”, this story is based off of a timeline and this is a third person point of view considering the narrator not once says “I” suggesting this is from an outsider looking in. Also, it is clear that the narrator strongly uses personification by personifying the home, and small details within the home to give a vivid image as to how the house was before and how it is now. The clock is given the personification of caring about the presence of those who lived in the home. For example, in the beginning it said that “In the living room the voice clock sang- Time to get up seven-o’clock as if it were afraid no body would” (Bradbury, 1). This means that the presence of the people who lived in this home is no longer there and that the clock is not good with being alone. As the story goes on, it begins to discuss the dog that comes over hurt and in search for help. Once it finds there is no one at the house, “it ran wildly in circles biting at its tail spun in a frenzy, and died”. (Bradbury, 3). In other words, the dog ran crazily in circles, spun uncontrollably and then died. This suggests that the home that was once upon a time livable, is now a dangerous/ hazardous place. In the beginning, the home is personified to as strong, holding itself together through this tragedy. However, fails to do so because in the story it is said that “The house tried to save itself. But the windows were broken by the heat and the window blew and sucked upon the fire”. (Bradbury, 5). This conveys that the home tried to stand its ground as much as possible but failed because of the fire that occurred. “The reserved water supply which had filled baths and wash dishes for many quiet days was gone”(Bradbury, 3). In other words, the water supply in which they relied on during their time of crisis failed to be an assist during this fire. At the end, the narrator says “In the kitchen an instant before the rain of fire and timber the stove could be seen making breakfast”. (Bradbury, 6). This to me implied that to someone, not necessarily the narrator has a flashback during the fire of how the home used to be. It can be implied that this story is means to be taking place in the future considering the  utilities within the home are being personified by being responsible for the daily needs of the people who lived there such as the stove cooking pancakes on its own. Also, the title suggests that as well as the repetition of “it is august 2020”. Considering the whole city was wiped out and this was the only home that was standing, it can be implied that there was some type of nuclear weapon used possibly for war considering these weapons are usually the cause of mass destructions.

The Ones Who Walk From Omelas

In “The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas” By Ursula Le Guin, the narrator seeks to describe the citizens of Omelas and for us as readers to accept the people of Omelas. In the middle of the short story, “Do you accept the festival, the city, the joy?” (Guin,3) suggests that the narrator stresses the justification of the way in which the people of Omelas maintains happiness. This is because the majority of the story explains why one should accept the happiness of the city of Omelas. For example, in the basement of one of the most attractive buildings in Omelas “There is a child, about six, and is feeble-minded” and feeling so closed in and away from the rest of the world once and a while yells out “I will be good, please let me out!” (Guin,3). In other words, there is a young child who has some type of mental issue and is being kept in a specific place day and night, and the child’s main motive is to get out. The city of Omelas all as one “understand that their happiness, beauty of their city, tenderness of friendships, the wisdom of their scholars depend wholly on this child’s abominable misery”(Guin,3). This means that in order for the people of Omelas to maintain happiness and the ability for the city to continue advancing their society this child has to be in the location in which it is in, and the circumstances in which it is in at all times. Though this seems such an unjustified situation considering “the young people go home in tears when they have seen the child and faced this terrible paradox” they eventually tend to realize that “even if the child could be released, it would not get much good of its freedom” because “it has been afraid too long ever to be free of fear” (Guin,4). Although the young children of Omelas are truly devastated from the vivid image of the child’s suffer, they come to the acceptance that things will not get any better even if the child could possibly be free because it has been so used to the darkness that even if the child saw light, it would not know what to do with it or how to re-adapt. The narrator goes on to further justify the situation in Omelas by describing that “to exchange all the goodness and grace of every life in Omelas for that single, small improvement would be to let guilt within the walls indeed” (Guin,4). For the exchange of all the good outcomes that come from this to free that one person would be to “let guilt within the walls indeed” because if the people surprisingly decided to risk all their happiness and positivity that comes to the citizens to free the child their guilt will only get worst considering their close and loved ones will be directly affected by this causing the situation to only get worst which is the point the narrator is trying to explain. Though expected for the citizens of Omelas to come to a hundred percent acceptance in order to keep their family happy, it seems as though the city of Omelas is after all not happy because sometimes after the people go see the situation the child is in, “each alone, they leave towards the mountains, they leave Omelas and never come back” and they head toward a place in which “it is possible that it does not exist”. One can infer that the devastation from the child’s circumstances caused the people of Omelas to never truly have happiness because their happiness depends on the suffrage of one child who desperately wants to be as “happy” as others are.  The Narrator, who only has knowledge about the utopian society have no idea where the citizens of Omelas with guilt actually go.

HURRY BEFORE IT IS TOO LATE!

In this story “The Yellow Wallpaper”, many different points of views, and motives occur. For example, in the beginning of the story, the protagonist had her suspicions about the wallpaper. However, her main focus was to get well and get back to work. Due to her troubles such as being sick and not being productive, she says she feels as though her brother and husband has “forbidden to work until I am well again”. This is a dilemma for her because she stresses the inability to be a productive mother and wife. Also, it is causing her to become moody. Because she has so much alone time on her hands considering her husband is out taking care of other sick patients while she requests Jennie to give her alone time arguing it will be a better cure for her, she uses that time to study the wall paper a bit more and widens her imagination by turning nothing into something. She becomes so obsessed with the idea at one point that she sees both her husband and Jennie as possible competition. “I caught him several times staring at the paper” “and Jennie too” suggests that this no longer is about killing time but in fact is about uncovering the missing pieces to her theory which was that with regards to the paper, “the woman behind shakes it”, and getting to the mystery FIRST. It can be inferred that based off of her husband’s demands such as staying home and suggesting her to be unproductive can mean he has some type of knowledge on the paper and is trying to keep it a secret considering he acts as though he has no clue as to what is going on. Also, he tries to convince her of not paying mind toward the idea of the paper having a vivid image/ meaning behind it. For example, she says “he says i must use self-control and not let any silly fancies run away with me”. This to me suggests he has something to do with the paper due to him trying to give his wife a new motive such as being a better wife and mother rather than focusing on the paper, which he secretly could be trying to solve as well. This shows that there are many different motives from the beginning to end because in the beginning of the story she intends to be a better wife for her husband and a better mother to her daughter. However, as she becomes more drawn into her little “fancy” her motive changes to her not even worrying about that and in fact worrying about getting to solve the mystery even if it involves going against her husband 

GIRL

Throughout the story “Girl”, guidance from an experienced lady is being revealed to the younger generation of girls on how to act and be treated like a woman. It is inferred that the writer of the story is experienced considering she is speaking on certain basic actions taken by a young woman both positive and negative and their results. Last but not least, how to prevent or get out of negative situations. This is explained through the repetition of “this is how” supporting the conclusion that she has been there and experienced those situations. In the short story, it is explained for a lady to treat herself like one to prevent attracting guys who will waste her time. The narrator shows significance towards young woman not making a fool of themselves because then all the guidance their parents possibly gave them will contradict their recent actions.  It is also inferred that the Narrator writing this story is in defense of young woman preventing a heart break, or getting out of situations that can put their life on pause. In other words, these instructions are to help guide a young woman to live her everyday life as a respected woman in order to attract the right guys and as a result, have fewer dilemmas when trying to figure a guy out or not have to feel like a fool when it is all said and done. “Don’t eat fruits on the street” because “flies will follow” suggests that the narrator is saying for a woman to not do anything guys are attracted to because they will be quick to give attention.  This shows that the narrator truly supports out-competing guys mentally to prevent them from taking advantage or wasting a ladies time. Also, this to me means that she is making it her business to be as impactful as possible to those who read considering she is directly demanding certain actions such as “do not eat fruits in the street” which shows she feels strongly about her position and how to go about it. In conclusion, her main reason for speaking on all of this is for a young woman to create a better technique when she “squeezes bread to make sure it is fresh”. In other words, to be better at determining whether a guy is for them or not and if they aren’t in a position to do so? Make the guy trust them more to get the more truthful side of him.

Introduction

Hello everyone, it is a pleasure. I go by the name of Timothy Rivera as some may already know. Things that interest me will be traveling, spending time with my family, and most importantly the ability to continue advancing academically. There are currently no specifics with regards to my major. However, I would like to be somewhere in the field of psychology. Over the summer I took time to visit loved ones located in VA, FL, & GA. As a writer, it is a bit complex for me to prevent run-on sentences and the selection of words I choose to convey certain ideas. However, I have an advantage finding hidden messages within a story based on literary devices, and punctuations. One thing I enjoy most about writing is being able to throw all my ideas on a paper and structure it accordingly. One thing I enjoy about reading is finding hidden ideas and messages that the narrator hides and expects the reader to skip by as though there isn’t any significance within those hidden points, and using that to find the main idea. I enjoy critical thinking because it helps me think outside the box and come up with better and more effective ideas.If it weren’t for Professor Belli I would have no experience what so ever with OpenLab. As of right now, I only know how to post statuses and post comments. My sense of literature is being creative and having fun with writing in a way that a lot of imagery is revealed. From this course, I expect to be able to be more creative with my writing and for my writing to be more structured or in order. I hope this is enough to give you guys a glimpse of who I am overall. Good luck to everyone in this course and may you get the best outcome!