On December 14th, 2012 there was a mass shooting in Newtown, Connecticut. This shooting was the deadliest mass shooting at a school in U.S. history. The shooting was done by twenty-year-old Adam Lanza. He shot twenty children and six staff members at Sandy Hook Elementary School as well as his mother just before he went to the school. This tragedy prompted renewed debate about gun control in the United States and proposals for making the backround-check system universal. The backround-check is a system for determining if prospective firearms or explosives buyers are eligible to buy them. I do not know if this event effected the world, however it definitely effected the U.S. On December 17th, all of the students at our school wore green and white ribbons to show our support. Green and white are Sandy Hook Elementary School's colors. This tragedy is significant because several people lost their lives and this will live on in my memory as along as I live. When I found out about this I was shocked. I was only ten years old and I was absolutely terrified that this could even happen. The thought of innocent people being shot was devastating for me and I felt really sad for the next few days every time I was even slightly reminded of it. On this day, we had Monday morning chapel and I remember it being dismal as we prayed for the victims, their families, and friends. This event changed me in many ways. I had never even heard of something bad that had happened to to innocent people before. I had been taught that awful things only happened people that deserved it. I will always remember this day and how it changed my perspective on the world and the people living in it. Today, I still see it differently than how I did in 4th grade.
In John Steinbecks' novels, Of Mice and Men and The Pearl, there is a pattern between the characters' relationships. Although the plot in each of these stories is different, the relationships are very similar. Many comparisons can be made between the authority figures Kino and George, the childlike Lennie and Coyotito, and the pompous Curley and the doctor.
The first example of similarities are between Kino and George. They are both authority figures that are responsible for others' lives. Kino protects his baby son, Coyotito. He had to keep him quiet when there was a person trying to find them; he saved both of their lives. His dream is for someday, for Coyotito to go to school. George protects his companion Lennie. George said, "Hide till I come for you. Hide in the brush by the river." (P.30 in Of Mice And Men.) Lennie can sometimes frustrate George a lot, but they care for each other and are not lonely like most ranch workers. Sometimes when Lennie would frustrate George, George would ramble on about how great his life would be without Lennie. He said, "God a'mighty, if I was alone I could live so easy. I could go get a job an' work, an' no trouble." (In Of Mice and Men P.11) Although this was very mean of George because Lennie has mental issues and can not help this fact, George actually really cares for Lennie. He does all that he can to keep him out of trouble and Lennie realizes at the end of the book what George does for him and how he puts Lennie's safety before his.
Another set of characters with similarities is Lennie and Coyotito. They are both in need of someone to take care of them. Lennie is childlike and has some mental issues. He often forgets things and George has to remind him. Also, he does not know his own strength so George has to keep him out of trouble. Slim even said, "Jesus, he's jes' like a kid ain't he." (P.43 In Of Mice And Men.) Coyotito is a baby. He needed help from Kino several times in The Pearl. For example, when he was stung by a scorpion, he needed help because he was weak and sick. He needed someone to care for him. Both of these characters end up getting shot in the end of the book.
The last example of characters with similarities in these two books are Curley and the doctor. They both think that they are better than everyone else. They are rude people and do not care what anyone else has to say. Curley has a big head because he is the boss's son. He picks fights to show off that he was a fighter and that despite his size, he is strong and not someone you want to mess with. Also, he wears spurs on his boots. At the ranch, this shows that he is not an ordinary ranch worker, but he is ranked on a higher class than everyone else because nobody does hard work with spurs on their boots. The doctor believes that he should live in France with other rich people instead of in the little town he lives in. He refused to treat Coyotito when he was stung by a scorpion. He said, " Have I got nothing better to do than cure insect bites for 'Little Indians'? I am a doctor not a veterinary." (In The Pearl P.11) The doctor didn't treat the baby for a couple reasons. They are that because their family was poor, they would not have enough money to pay him and it was a waste of time. The other reason is that Coyotito and his family are a different race from him.
In these two books, there are many similarities between the characters because they are written by the same person. John Steinbeck could have done this because he loves these character traits being in his novellas. The characters are so memorable so it really helps the reader acknowledge the story which may be the secret to his success. John Steinbeck is a famous writer and conclusions can be drawn that there are noticeable similarities in his characters in the books Of Mice And Men and The Pearl.
"Serve, lead, flourish" is the St. Matthew's Parish School motto. In my life, I serve, lead, and flourish in many different ways. First, I serve by being a part of National Charity League (NCL.) Our goal is to make a difference in people's lives who are less fortunate than we are. This year we made stockings for children, sent letters to soldiers, wrapped presents for families, and worked at the thrift shop.
One way I lead is on the volleyball court. I play the position of the setter which is very similar to the quarterback in football because I am generally responsible for getting the ball to my teammates. I also lead by showing student initiative in my studies. Another place I lead is at at home. I have two younger siblings that I am a role model for. When I am around them I try to be respectful, honest, and responsible. For example, if they see me doing my homework or my chores, they are more likely to do theirs.
I flourish by putting a lot of hard work and effort into things. I am thriving every day. I work hard to attain good grades and to make honor roll. Not only in school do I work hard, I also work hard to excel in sports. I have aspiration to do these things as well as to be a good friend. I always try my best to be supportive, positive, honest, and respectful towards people. I have been going to St. Matthews since preschool and throughout the years St. Matthews has taught me to serve, lead, and flourish the best I can.
I am like a fish,
Swimming through the sea.
Thoughts of the world swim and splash in my head.
Each scale holds a different aspect of me,
Creativity, knowledge, curiosity.
It was a cloudy and rainy day on winter break. The rain was sporadically falling and
hitting the pavement. Drops of water were dripping from the green trees and silently hitting the
grass. I was riding my bike through the rain with my sister. We were on our way home, but we
were cold and wet so we went to my grandparents house instead which was closer. We rang the
doorbell and my grandpa answered, gave me a hug, and welcomed us in. He and my grandma
offered to dry our jackets because they were soaking wet, and get us a snack. Afterwards, my
grandpa and I played cards. I remember the sound of him quickly shuffling the cards.
My grandpa is my dad's dad and he is one of seven children. His name is Richard
Fisher. He is very smart and has been married for fifty years. As I have grown up, he and
my grandma have always been around. After all, they live a block away from us. My grandpa
would never miss a chance to ride home with us on bikes or go swimming in Big Bear Lake. Not
to mention he does everything with a smile on his face. It is like he is a kid half of the time and a
wise, older man another half of the time which is the perfect combination for a grandpa. He is
six foot, four inches tall and is on the thinner side. His hair is grey and he has brown eyes.
I was around 6 years old at the time and I was in Big Bear for a vacation with my grandparents and family. Today was the day I learned how to waterski. My grandpa and my dad gave me step by step instructions on what to do. I was extremely scared to do this but my grandpa comforted me while we rode to the beach on the boat for an easier head start. My grandpa was driving the boat and I was dropped off with my dad on the beach. While my dad helped me get into my skis, I was crying because I had never done anything like this before and I was really little. I kept saying I didn't want to do it but my grandpa kept yelling back from the boat, "you can do it, I promise!" I was starting to feel more assured so I gave my him the thumbs-up sign to signal I was ready. As soon as I heard the engine start with a rumble, I started screaming with fear but I remembered what my grandpa had said to me, and how he promised me I could do it and I knew he wouldn't lie to me. I held on to the handle and jolted forward, skidding across the water. The wind was blowing past me and there was water blowing in my face. I was still miserable but I was happy I had done it. I am so grateful for my grandpa's encouragement and I wouldn't love waterskiing and wake boarding today if it weren't for him.
I am from volleyball,
From practices and tournaments.
I am from the avacado tree outside (always falling and cracking open in the springtime.)
I am from my dog Sam,
Who greets me with joy as I enter my home.
I'm from Baskin Robins and bike riding,
From Bolinger to Villa View.
I'm from school smarts and street smarts too.
I'm from Big Bear Lake and cabins,
From waterskiing to wake boarding.
From the rocking chair that was my grandfathers as a child,
From the smell of the mountains and pine trees.
In a cabinet was a shelf,
Full of photo albums.
I am from these moments.
A big hero in my life is Bridget Hearst. Bridget is a fantastic student as well as an
amazing volleyball player which is why she went to Yale. She was my volleyball coach last year
but I am still in touch with her. Last year was my first real year of volleyball and she sculpted me
into the player I am today. I started out that year as a middle hitter and on day one, she noticed
that I had good hands for setting so from then on, she trained me to be a setter. She taught me
everything I needed to know. After that season, she helped me over the summer to get even
better out of sheer kindness. I made the number one team in our club for my age division.
Bridget was supposed to be the assistant coach for my team this year but she had to move to
New York for modeling. I was upset about this because one of the reasons I wanted to make the
top team was to have Bridget as my coach. However, I was happy for her because it is what she
wanted and of course I wanted the best for her. She is not only a great coach but is also a
fantastic person. I respect her so much and she is a great role model. Bridget would take time
out of her day to help train me, no coach has ever done anything like that for me. Another thing
Bridget has is a fantastic coaching technique. She did not yell at all which was perfect for me
because I would be really intimidated by her. That would not be good because then I would not
get to know her as a person and I would be too nervous to ask her questions. She is so kind
and she is a lot like me so she was able to know how to teach me and talk to me. Bridget Hearst
is a hero to me for so many reasons, this essay is only the start of how kind, empathetic,
amazing, and caring she is.
I live in Pacific Palisades. My backyard, Will Rodgers Park, and Christmas time are important because they are beautiful aspects of my neighborhood.
My backyard has a view of many things. A person could see the ocean which can be bright blue, shimmering silver, and on a clear day, you can see Catalina island. In the evening, the sunsets are absolutely amazing with orange, purple, pink, and red light. Also, there is an infinity pool that looks like it is flowing into the canyon. In the morning, it looks like glass. Besides the view, my backyard is also very green. It has fresh green grass, flowers, bushes, and trees. My backyard has really beautiful views.
I live in the group of houses near Will Rodgers Park. There is a big, green hill that leads to a huge, green meadow. People are often there to go on hikes because there are many trails. The best trail is one that leads to Inspiration Point, where people can see most of Los Angeles. It is fun to drive through puddles on a bike in the rain because the puddles can be really big. Will Rodgers Park is a fun place to play.
The best season is Christmas time. Most of the neighbors have Christmas lights and they look really pretty. There are two on the corner that overdo it every year and they are very bright but fun to look at. At my house, we have a Christmas tree that we decorate with lights and ornaments. We also decorate the house with Christmas decorations. On Christmas morning, we open presents, stockings, and eat a wonderful Christmas breakfast. Christmas time is filled with great spirits.
I am very grateful for all that I have. Especially my backyard, Will Rodgers Park, and Christmas time because my neighborhood is beautiful.