I am still reading Stephen R.Covey’s The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, it has helped me develop some better habits and learn more ways to operate and be a better person and student. The fourth habit he writes about in the book is to think win/win. It is the mindset of trying to achieve something with mutual benefit in all human interactions. He shares a story about how a manager was using a trip to Cancun for the best worker as an incentive to get people to work harder. This tactic was not that effective because it was a win/lose situation. There were employees who would not go to Cancun and one that does and so there are some people who are demotivated. Stephen R.Covey also the goes on to describe each situation.

Win/Win is not a technique; it’s not a total philosophy of human interaction. In fact, it is one of six paradigms of interaction. The alternative paradigms are Win/Lose, Lose/Win, Lose/Lose, Win, and Win/Win or No Deal. (p.206)

Win/Win is obviously the best out of these because both parties are benefiting and we should all try and get Win/Win situations in all aspects of human interaction and the stuff that we do in our daily lives.


Personal Writing 2

It was a cold brisk winter morning and me and the boys were out exploring the forest around my house. We took my dog with us and a few cool sticks we found along the way. It took a few hours but we finally wore ourselves out by running around and chasing each other. We threw sticks for my dog when we were tired and then got back to playing once we were rested enough. We played until the evening and we decided to head back to the house. I stopped to tie my shoes, but my friends did not wait for me and continued to the house. The dog, however, did wait for me. She sat next to me while I was tying my shoes. I stood up after i was done but my friends had already gone inside. I decided to throw a stick for my dog because she sat and waited with me. I threw it pretty far and waited. 5 minutes went by and I could still hear the rustling of the bushes so I stayed there and waited. Another 3 minutes went by before I went into the bushes myself to find my dog. I walked towards the bustling bushes until I saw my dog. She was sitting down over the stick. I called out to her to come with me but she walked the other way. I followed her, still calling her name hoping she would turn around and come towards me so I wouldn’t have to chase her into the forest. We ended up in a clearing with a single willow tree in the center. I saw a stick on the ground in front of me. It looked just like the stick I threw. I looked up and could not see my dog anywhere. I thought it was a cool area so i walked around for a bit before heading towards the center with the willow tree. I could see a swarm of flies hovering around the other side of the tree. It took 3 steps to make it to the other side and what I saw made my stomach turn. I wanted to throw up. What I could see, lying on the ground was my dog, its stomach ripped open and its insides strewn about. I started crying and ran back towards my home. I ran and I ran until I got tired. I ran for 30 minutes before I stopped. When I looked around, I was back at the willow tree. I couldn’t believe what was happening. I took a seat across from my dogs corpse and cried into my knees. I cried for what had to have been 20 minutes. But suddenly I could hear panting, a dog’s panting. I looked up and to my surprise my dog’s corpse was gone. Instead, in its place, was another dog. It could not have been my dog, this dog was standing up on its hind legs, and was staring. Staring at me. I stood up and slowly backed up. “No one will hear your screams.” the thing said softly. “You cant run.” I was stuck,  too afraid to move as the thing walked towards me. drooling from the mouth. It opened its gaping jaws so wide. The inside of its mouth was pitch black, like the night sky.


Stephen R. Covey’s The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People is a very good book to help people such as myself improve on themselves and improve their lives and be an all around better person. In this book Stephen R. Covey goes in depth on living with fairness, integrity, honesty and dignity. He shares personal stories and examples that some people can relate to and learn to better themselves. The first story he shares is of him raising one of his sons and trying to figure out what the right way to go about it was.

We stopped trying to kindly, positively manipulate him into an acceptable social mold. Because we saw him as fundamentally adequate and able to cope with life, we stopped protecting him against the ridicule of others.                                                                      He had been nurtured on this protection, so he went through some withdrawal pains, which he expressed and which we accepted, but did not necessarily respond to. “we dont need to protect you,” was the unspoken message. “your fundamentally okay.” (p.20)

Once Stephen R. Covey stopped protecting his son from all the things in life his son began to grow and learn his own personalities and traits which led him from being the small scared shy boy to being a confident young man who started to get a bump up in his report cards and doing sports.

Personal writing

There is a memory engraved in my head since kindergarten. It all started when i hurt myself while playing on the playground. It was a sunny morning in the grey city called surrey, the sun shined through my windows early in the morning and I rose from my bed. It must have been 6 AM and everyone wlse was asleep. I got up slowly and quietly as to try and not wake up my brother who was sound asleep across the room. I cracked open the door and slid out of my room and down the hall to my parents room. I woke up my dad and ran downstairs before he got mad at me and woke everyone else up. He eventually came downstairs and asked why I had woken him up from his slumber. I told him i wanted to go play at the park before we went to school. With a sigh my father made himself a coffee an ate some breakfast before taking me on the short walk to go to the park. Once we arrived, I bolted across the wood chips and onto the red and grey playground. I played for around 30 minutes before tragedy struck. I was on the swings when my dad told me we had to leave, I thought it was a good idea to jump off of the swing but my finger was stuck in the chainlink holding the seat midair. I attempted to launch myself from said seat, and got pulled back and landed face first into the woodchips. The wind was knocked out of me for the first time in my life and I had a twisted finger.

Comparing & contrasting They Shall Not Grow Old

They shall not grow old is a documentary on the First World War. It was directed and produced by one Peter Jackson in 2018. It has footage that has been colourised and interviews of servicemen play over the footage. Some of the servicemen have the same feelings about the war as Baumer and some the same as Krepps. In the documentary it shows both the good and the awful parts in the war. Like in All Quiet on the Western Front, there were times where the soldiers would be fooling around with eachother and having a good time until they had to go over the trench and rush the enemies, that is when the soldiers were filled with fear and anger and they used that to fuel their attacks. In chapter 9 of All Quiet on the Western Front, Paul kills a man with a knife, he sits there beside the dying man for hours, feeling bad and trying to save the man. One of the servicemen in They Shall Not Grow Old describe having the same experience.

IRJE#1 ‘The Great Escape: Tunnel to Freedom’

Mike Meserole’s The Great Escape: Tunnel to Freedom is about the prisoners of Stalag Luft III creating a massive operation to make 3 tunnels under the prison to escape with 200 men. Most of the book is focused on Royal Air Force Squadron Leader Roger Bushell who is known as the “Big X”. The three tunnels were called Tom, Dick, and Harry. they made three tunnels because the first 2 were meant to be found so that the third would succeed. All the prisoners are scavengy and scandolous after being stuck in there for such a long time, even though they are treated really well. When a Luftwaffe general shows up to the camp in his shiny black Czech Tatra. Von Lindeiner whom is the commandant of Stalag Luft III acompanied him and warned not to let the prisoner near his car but he lets the prisoners look. The Prisoners were very quick to steal from it:

“as you wish, Herr General,” said von Lindeiner, “but please make sure the windows and doors are locked.”

The chauffer was no match for the kriegies. One minute he was accepting a cigarette and answering questions from the German speakers. the next minute he was at the back of the car trying to get rid of several peacetime mechanics who had popped the rear hood to inspect the engine. Meanwhile, someone else had jimmied open the right front passenger door and made off with a pair of gloves, flashlight, three road maps, a tool kit, and the backseat cigarette lighter. A military handbook marked “SECRET” also disappeared befoire the door was closed and locked again. (p.98-99)

Unfortunatly the military handbook had no useful information to help out the prisoners. But this quote does show how quick the prisoners are to steal and come up with small little schemes that can help them distract people to steal from them.

Comparison of Krebs and Baumer

Krebs and Baumer were both soldiers in WW1. However they were on opposing forces. Krebs fought for the Americans and Baumer for the Germans. Krebs survived the war and returned home in 1919. Baumer died in 1918. When Krebs got home, he felt distant, like he did not fit in anymore. This is kind of how Baumer felt when he went on leave during the war to visit his family. Disconnected, like they did not belong. I believe that Baumer did not like the combat, he more enjoyed the down time hanging out with his comrades. Krebs really enjoyed the thrill of combat. Krebbs cannot get that thrill in civilian life, but he cant tell that to anyone because that would make him look crazy which distants him even more from the rest of society.

Personal Response to “All Quiet on the Western Front”

All Quiet on the Western Front is a novel by Erich Maria Remarque. It is about a young man named Paul Bäumer who was swayed along with the rest of his class by the words of his teacher Kanotorek to join the army and fight for the fatherland. His classmates were all seperated except for a few of his friends (leer, Müller, Kropp and a few others). when they arrived, they met Stanislaus Katczinsky who was nicknamed Kat. Kat was an older soldier and was very smart. I didnt dislike or like the book. it was just a book. I also didnt feel anything sadness, happiness, or anger at what was happening. I did however liked the perspectives it gave.

The book helps you understand the perspective of the soldiers who had to fight in WW1 and the conditions they lived in and the effects it had on the soldiers. it also let people from other countries realize that the germans were not the savages that propoganda had written them to be. Erich Remarque was able to grasp the emotions that Paul felt throughout the novel which helped understand even more how the soldiers felt. I live and sleep normally every day and night and could not imagine the pain Paul felt when he could not live the life he lived before the war. In chapter 7 Paul went on leave and visited his hometown where is father, mother and sister live. When he converses with people, it is very hard on him because they keep on asking questions about the war. Paul went on leave to get away from the war for a bit but the people only want to know about the war from him. Paul knows that the people do not mean to be rude or mean but he hates their assumptions about the war. Paul’s dying mother is the one he connects to the most. “My mother is very pale” (p.158) The night before he has to return to the war they stay up together and exchange words of concern and love to eachother. But Paul is glad to be going back to see his comrades.

In chapter 9 Paul and his friends start to question whether the Germans are in the right or wrong. They also make fun of the Kaiser. this shows that they are slowly starting to realize that war is not worth it. Paul goes on patrol and ends up stabbing someone and killing them. He watched the man die, painfully. Paul feels remorse and seeks forgoiveness from the man’s corpse. This is the first person Paul killed a man so close and so personally. “This is the first time i have killed with my hands, whom i can see so close at hand, whose death is my doing.” (p. 221)

My family has had a lot of military connections. My father is in the reserves, my great grandpa was in the navy during WW2, and my great grandpa on my mom’s side died in WW2. I personally do not have any experiences with the military or any combat of any kind, I have not gotten into any  physical altercations or fights ever and dont plan on it. But if there is a time in my life where another war starts I would definetly enlist. to serve my country or die for it would be fun.

The English version of All Quiet on the Western Front uses words of old Enlgish that I usually had to search up. The old fashioned english matched up with the story really well since it was during WW1. Words such as Tommy (a private in the British army), napkin (diaper), and lorries (trucks) were all old fashioned english words that I did not know.

As you get closer to the end of the book all of Paul’s friends start to die off one by one. It was the death of Kat that really dealt the biggest blow to Paul. Once Kat died Paul didnt care much for living. It wasnt until October of 1918 when Paul died. “Turning him over one saw that he could not have suffered long; his face had an expression of calm, as though almost glad the end had come.” (p. 256)


About me

My name is Dylan Gardner. My mother is Japanese and my Father is Canadian. I was born in Vernon BC and moved to Victoria in 2014. I like to eat and exercise a lot. My hopes this year is for me to get mostly As on my report card. And i expect to at least get a B in English class this year.