IRJE #4: Adults taking advantage

The Catcher in the Rye is a novel by J.D. Salinger. Holden Caulfield is a 16-year-old teen who ran away from boarding school because he doesn’t find passion nor motivation in passing classes. He decided to stay in a hotel since he didn’t want to go back home.

Then, all of a sudden, I got in this big mess.  

The first thing when I got in the elevator, the elevator guy said to me, 

“Innarested in having a good time, fella? Or is it too late for you?” 

“How do you mean?” I said. I didn’t know what he was driving at or anything. 

 “Innarested in a little tail t’night?”  

“Me?” I said. Which was a very dumb answer, but it’s quite embarrassing when somebody comes right up and asks you a question like that.  

“How old are you, chief?” the elevator guy said.  

“Why?” I said. “Twenty-two.” 

 “Uh huh. Well, how ’bout it? Y’innarested? Five bucks a throw. Fifteen bucks the whole night.” He looked at his wrist watch. “Till noon. Five bucks a throw, fifteen bucks till noon.”  

“Okay,” I said. It was against my principles and all, but I was feeling so depressed I didn’t even think. That’s the whole trouble. When you’re feeling very depressed, you can’t even think.  

“Okay what? A throw, or till noon? I gotta know.”  

“Just a throw.” 

“Okay, what room ya in?” 

I looked at the red thing with my number on it, on my key. “Twelve twenty-two,” I said. I was already sort of sorry I’d let the thing start rolling, but it was too late now. “Okay. I’ll send a girl up in about fifteen minutes.” He opened the doors and I got out.

“Hey, is she good-looking?” I asked him. “I don’t want any old bag.”  

“No old bag. Don’t worry about it, chief.”  

“Who do I pay?” “Her,” he said. “Let’s go, chief.” (p. 99)

This reminds me of times when adults tried to take advantage of me since I am a kid and tried to sell products to me that are illegal and illegal to kids. This is sad because this is the reason that some kids get themselves into trouble or addictions. 

Basketball game (PW #2)

 

On November 11, 2022, I had a run and gun basketball game at Spectrum Community School. I was the point-guard, the point-guard is the one that brings up the ball and makes a play so the team can score. At the end of the game, I had 20 points, but we lost. I didn’t care about our loss since run and gun is basically so teams can practice by having a scrimmage. My best mate during the game was Hassan Mahommed, I was throwing him lobs and dunks and he was finishing them. My best mate during the game was Hassan Mahommed, I was throwing him lobs and dunks and he was finishing them.  

IRJE: Losing a brother

This IRJE will be talking about The Catcher in the Rye a novel by J.D. Salinger. The main character in this novel is Holden Caulfield and unfortunately his little brother (Allie) had died from cancer. This affected his mental health significantly. Holden’s brother Allie was an important aspect of his life and talks about him.

“What?” I said to old Phoebe. She said something to me, but I didn’t hear her. 

“You can’t even think of one thing.” 

“Yes, I can. Yes, I can.” 

“Well, do it, then.” 

“I like Allie,” I said. “And I like doing what I’m doing right now. Sitting here with you, and talking, and thinking about stuff, and–“ 

“Allie’s dead–You always say that! If somebody’s dead and everything, and in Heaven, then it isn’t really–“ 

“I know he’s dead! Don’t you think I know that? I can still like him, though, can’t I? Just because somebody’s dead, you don’t just stop liking them, for God’s sake– especially if they were about a thousand times nicer than the people you know that’re alive and all.” (pp. 184-185) 

This quote upsets me because I also have a little brother whom I really love, and I can’t even imagine how life would be without him. Though I don’t know what losing a close relative feels like but I can see why this puts a lot of distress on anyone who has. 

IRJE What drove MLK Jr. and I to be successful

       In the Autobiography of Martin Luther King, Jr. By Martin Luther, MLk jr. (Martin Luther, King Jr.) talks about how he was restricted from going to the front of the bus due to segregation in Atlanta. 

I remember another experience I used to have in Atlanta. I went to high school on the other side of town—to the Booker T. Washington High School. I had to get the bus in what was known as the Fourth Ward and ride over to the West Side. In those days, rigid patterns of segregation existed on the buses, so that Nergros had to sit in the backs of buses, those seats were still reserved for whites only, so Negroes had to stand over empty sears. I would end up having to go to the back of that bus with my body, but every time I got on that bus I left my mind up on the front seat. And I said to myself, “one of these days, I’m going to put my body up there where my mind is.” (p. 9)

       Though I’ve never experienced segregation, the quote “one of these days, I’m going to put my body up there where my mind is.” really struck me. Though I don’t like to brag, I think of myself as an amazing basketball player. Back when I first started playing basketball, I was an amateur and was horrible at basketball. One day I got fed up with kids making fun of me that I sucked at basketball, so I told myself “I’m going to be better than them one day”. This gave me the motivation to wake up every morning at 6am to play basketball and practice every day for 6-7 hours in total.  

Personal writing response – Camping Trip.

My personal writing response is about the time my brother and I caught minnows and fried them at a beach near a cabin we were staying at in Pinawa, Manitoba. 

       On July 6, 2013, sometime in the afternoon, my brother and I decided to head down to the beach to catch whatever critters lurked in the waters. We put on our bathing suits, and each equipped a small bucket and a small fishing net. An hour after we arrived at the beach, we ended up catching roughly 42 minnows altogether. My brother and I debated on what to do with the minnows and ended up deciding to fry the minnows over an outdoor fireplace near the cabin we were staying at. Arriving at the cabin we asked our dad to assist us with starting a fire. Once the fire began to rise, we placed aluminum paper on top of the fire along with all the minnows. After a short period of time the skin of the lifeless minnows frying over the fire became burnt. We removed the minnows off the fireplace and placed them onto a plate sitting on a picnic table beside the fireplace.  

       After displacing the minnows, we noticed a lot of steam coming off the minnows, so we left them untouched until no steam was visible to us. My brother and I played a game of cards while waiting for the minnows to cool down. The minnows resting on the plate finally cooled off but still had a gross black and unappetizing crisp to them. I picked up a minnow with my fingers and placed it into my mouth. I soon felt sympathy for myself after exposing my taste buds to the horrifying and utterly bitter taste of the minnow. Since that day, I’ve never consumed another minnow. 

Comparison “All Quiet in the Western Front”, “Soldier’s Home” and “They Shall Not Grow Up”

       This blog will be comparing and contrasting “They Shall Not Grow Old”, “All Quiet on the Western Front” and “Soldier’s Home.” While all three fell into the category of WW1, “They Shall Not Grow Old”, and “Soldiers Home” fought for the allies while Paul Baumer from “All Quiet on the Western Front” fought for the axis. All three have nearly identical outcomes on the soldiers’ mental and emotional state after the war. It’s shown that arriving home traumatized and unable to reattach themselves to society is what makes their case alike. Overall, soldiers after the war ended up realizing how emotionally and mentally disconnected, they feel from their home.  

“Soldiers Home” only covers what a soldier experienced after the war while both “They Shall Not Grow Old” and “All Quiet on the Western Front” show the horrible and gruesome events that soldiers experienced while fighting, you can see that this led up to their trauma in the end. 

IRJE: “Pissing”

In Life of Pi, by Yann Martel, Pi disliked his name (Piscine) as a young boy because people would mispronounce it as “pea-seen” which sounds very much like “Pissing”. He stands up and tells his entire class he’s shortened his name into “Pi”. 

 

They could manage well enough the first syllable, the Pea, but eventually the hear was too much and they lost control of their frothy-mouthed steeds and could no longer rein them in for the climb to the second syllable, the seen. Instead, they plunged hell-bent into sing, and next time round, all was lost my hand would be up to give an answer, and would be acknowledged with a  

“Yes, Pissing.” (p. 23) 

 

This part of the book made me relate to Pi’s name. My name is Noam, and particular people who have heard of my name figured out that if you put a “G” Infront of “Noam” you can get something that sounds like “Gnome”. What makes these people even more brilliant is when they put “Garden” in front of “Gnome” they got “Garden gnome”. This made me chuckle because when I was in elementary school I became rather quickly annoyed when people would call me by “Garden gnome” instead of “Noam”. Just like Pi’s case where his real name is “Piscine”, but people called by “Pissing” instead. By middle school I grew to find the name funny and was never bothered by it ever since. 

The differences and similarities between Paul and Harold.

This blog talks about the comparisons of Paul Baumer and Harold Kerbs and the similarities and differences between them, plus the side effects of the war. Both fought in WW1 but fought for opposing sides, Paul fought for Germany and Harold fought for the allies this is irrelevant to the blog. Whilst All Quiet on the Western Front talks about Paul’s experience in the war and at home. Soldiers home only talks about Harolds time back at home. Therefore, I will mostly be talking about the about the before and after of the two soldiers. 

Harold went to a college in Kansas and Paul also went to school “Krebs went to… Methodist college in Kansas” (p. 1) of Soldier’s Home. What separates the two is how they were enlisted into fighting WW1. What differs the two is how they were enlisted in the war. “He enlisted in the Marines in 1917” (p. 1) Harold who volunteered for the war and Paul who was allegedly forced.  

Arriving home traumatized and incapable of comfortably reattaching themselves to society is what makes their case depressing. Fortunately for Harold, he didn’t have to go back to war unlike Paul who returns to battle again “Shall I meet all these fellows again?” (p. 152) finds out all his friends died. That’s not even the worst part “He fell in October 1918, on a day that was so quiet and still on the whole front.” (p. 296) Though maybe it was best for Paul to end his agony, never having to live another die in isolation from the rest of the world, I doubt that he wanted life to end at such a young age of 31.  

Overall, both soldiers ended up realizing how disconnected they feel from their homes after coming back from the war. It makes me wonder how many other cases like this occurred after the war. I’m grateful none of my existing family members went through war and dealt with that type of trauma. 

All Quiet on the Western Front-Personal Response

 All Quiet on the Western Front is a novel by Erich Maria Remarque is put in the perspective of a young German solider named Paul Bäumer who fought in trench-warfare along with his friends Stanislaus Katczinsky, Albert Kropp, Müller, Tjaden, Franz Kemmerich, Joseph Behm, Detering, Leer, Haie Westhus and Mittelstaedt. Paul and his friends seem likeable but there is nothing special or unusual about them, they are ordinary men that unfortunately got themselves fighting a war which introduced trauma to them. “We are so completely played out that in spite of our great hunger we do not think of the provisions. Then gradually we become something like men again.” “pp” 117-118. The plot of the story made sense, explaining the point of view of First-Person view of Paul plus the horrors and brutal events him and many other German soldiers had to or go through during trench-warfare and how they were scared because they could be killed anywhere at any time. Though the point of novel was to humanize people in the war and show that they are not monsters, it was not enjoyable to read due to the gruesome and graphic events occurring throughout the book.  

 

The poetry and tone in the novel are set in a depressed tone. It is easy to come across sad poetry reading the book. Getting increasingly more involved with the book makes me understand it was not made in a happy manner “It is very queer that the unhappiness of the word is so often brought on by small men.” “p” 10 and “We were all at once terribly alone; and alone we must see it through.” “p” 13. Me personally the book is formal, I do not understand many words in the novel without searching them up, complex sentences must be explained by someone for me to understand and slangs that I have never heard of “benediction” pg.118, “requisition” “p” 2 and “emaciated” “p” 280. The location Paul was fighting in made me imagine a land destroyed by bullets, shells, fire, and bombs. The part that got me thinking was “I raise one hand, I must show him that I want to help him, I stroke his forehead. The eyes shrink back as the hand comes, then they lose their stare, the eyelids droop lower, the tension is past. I open his collar and place his head more comfortably. His mouth stands half open, it tries to form words. The lips are dry. My water bottle is not there. I have not brought it with me. But there is water in the mud, down at the bottom of the crater. I climb down, take out my handkerchief, spread it out, push it under and scoop up the yellow water that strains through into the hollow of my hand. He gulps it down. I fetch some more. Then I unbutton his tunic in order to bandage him if it is possible.” “pp” 219-220.  I imagine a good man helping a man in need who was stabbed and in pain. 

 

Fortunately, I do not have to worry about having to go to war and experiencing similar things as the soldiers in the novel because I am not obligated to. I am capable of walking around without bullets constantly being shot, bombs are not going off and people are not trying to kill each other. “Müller is dead. Someone shot him point-blank in the stomach with a Verey light. He lived for half an hour, quite conscious, and in terrible pain.” “p” 279. I have not yet had a friend killed in British Colombia by a bullet; it shows how lucky we are that guns are prohibited; I know I can walk down a street without worrying that I will be shot. Paul and I are two separate types of people; all my friends are alive and all of Paul’s were killed in the war along with him. Paul is constantly anxious that he may be killed at any moment while I can have other things on my mind and not worry about that. We are fragile humans, for hundreds of year guns have killed millions of people and they still are not banned. It Shows how ignorant we are when it comes down to simple things.