14 3 / 2013
I was studying APUSH IDs in ROP today and I saw Howard studying for his honors history test. Seeing that we were both studying the same subject, we decided to help each other. Here is a part of our conversation.
Me: Ok Dred Scott.
Howard: Oh the Dred Scott decision.. it’s uh-
Me: No, just Dred Scott. The person. Who was he?
Howard: Oh he was a slave that ran away to the north and sued his-
Me: He didn’t run away!
Howard: Yeah he did!
Howard: Yeah he did! He ran away for freedom and then sued for his freedom.
Me: No he didn’t he freaking moved with his master to some free state and then moved back and sued for his freedom!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Me: You kidding me? Ok forget it, then what was the significance of the court decision?
Howard: They said it was unconstitutional.
Me: What was unconstitutional?
(I look at him)
Me: If they had said slavery was unconstitutional, then slavery would have been abolished right there.
Howard: (throws his arms into the air) What are you stupid or something?!
Me: What?!?!?? The court stated that slaves were property and had no rights to sue because they had no citizenship!
Howard: Are you kidding me?!?! The JUDGE said it unconstitutional. Not the COURT!
14 3 / 2013
Du bist sehr nass
Es gibt viele Wasser
Die Blumen sind sehr glücklich
Die Mutter sind nicht
Sie hat kein Schirm
Aber sie hat ein Buch mit kein Einband
Du mußt gehen?
Dann du mußt sterben
14 3 / 2013
[fade into a ghetto neighborhood]
[camera pans across and stops at the dumpiest building on the street]
[camera zooms into the 2nd story lighted window of an apartment]
[fade into a small room]
A dirty couch sits in the middle of the room with a slouching figure laying on top of it. Chao is watching a Japanese anime on a small tv set. Jenny stands in the back, cradling a crying baby. A dim lightbulb dangles and flickers precariously.
The baby finally stops crying and is sound asleep.
“Chao, would you please turn that thing down?” asks Jenny.
Chao grunts and carelessly reaches for the remote, only to have it hit the floor with a loud clatter. The baby whimpers and Jenny quietly woos it.
Then three young, raggedy children walk in through the door. They each hand Chao several quarters and dimes.
“Nice nice!” cheers Chao. The schoolgirl on the television slays a robot.
The children walk to their mother and weakly pull on her skirt.
They all talk at the same time. “Mommy I’m tired.” “Is there any food for dinner?”
Jenny sadly looks down on them and gently places a hand on one of their heads. “We will have to wait until your father gets some more money.”
Chao throws his arm in the air and snaps “Can you shut the hell up?!”
Jenny sighs and turns toward the window. She looks out at the city and sees the streetlights coming on. Cars can be seen in the distance, traveling down the freeway. The skyline appears before the sunset. A flock of birds rises and disappears behind some tall buildings. Jenny sees that the world has no limit to its potential. She could have been anything she wanted to be. Life could have been better.
The baby begins crying again. She rocks it back and forth and looks at her husband. She sees an unshaven bum, wearing a filthy shirt with drool stains running down the front. The bottom of his socks are brown and many holes reveal the corns of his feet. He picks at his fingernails and scratches his armpit.
She remembers the afternoon at high school. After a group of her friends had performed some questionable dance moves on the stage, Chao had come up to her and grabbed her collar. “Give me your money,” he said. Everyone around her had misheard and thought he asked her out…if only she had spoken up.
Jenny puts the baby down. She grabs her coat and whats left of her savings. The children are asleep on the floor. She silently opens the door and takes off, not looking back.
“Six years later”
[fade into a view of an art gallery from the street]
[fade in a scene in a hallway]
Jenny stands before a large painting. It is a canvas, with faded colors of red, orange, and brown. A little bit of gray runs down the front. She places a placard next to the painting. It reads “Shirt. By Jenny” She stands back and looks at the wall, where more of her paintings hang. Four children come running down the hall. They grab hold of their mother’s hands and walk out the door.
[the light coming from the door engulfs the scene]
14 3 / 2013
Dear City of Walnut,
As a citizen of Walnut, I feel that it is an obligation for me to keep this city clean. I regularly patrol the streets in search of trash and crime, and am well acquainted with the natives (you can find me on Facebook). During one of my rounds, I came across Lemon Creek Park, which I had never entered before. Noting that I still had about an hour before I would take a break and have tacos for luncheon, I took the liberty of exploring this little nook. My first impressions were great. The charming wooden sign instilled a great sense of welcome in me as I walked under it. An athletic woman pulled along a nice looking Labrador retriever as I passed by. I experienced pride and admiration for my city. I even tipped my hat towards some elderly Asian men walking by. Then I heard the trickling of water. I ran down towards the sound and I slipped and fell on my butt a couple times on the wet mud, but that’s OK. I picked myself up under the shade of a tree and when I looked up, I beheld the most majestic riparian ecosystem my eyes had ever seen. The entire planet became silent as I stood there, tracing my eyes along the slick ripples in the mud, into the clear flowing waters of the stream, and down into the soft sand where green plants grew on some rocks. I must have stood there dumbfounded for nearly an hour on that very spot because the instant I looked at my watch, it was nearly noon. I decided to head back. Before I left I took a drink from the stream to replenish my body for the trek. No. Something was not right.
I immediately called my beautiful assistants. “Get me my instruments, and don’t dabble,” I told them. During the time that it took for them to arrive, I procured several long branches and stripped off all my clothing to set up a station. There would be no lunch today. The girls arrived promptly and I assigned them to work on testing the water. I took hold of the critter screen, and as naked as the day I was born, I stood in the waters and began gathering macroorganisms. Someone began playing “The Hustle” on a stereo in the background and we all collected data to its beat. Good thing I brought my roller skates. We recorded and compiled the data. I was appalled by the results. We tested the temperature, conductivity, turbidity, DO, pH, hardness, alkalinity, phosphates, and nitrates. All these tests suggested clean and stable water…except one. The fecal coliform test came out showing very high levels of fecal contamination. Perhaps this stream was a popular place for animals like coyotes and birds? Maybe a septic system is damaged upstream and leaked into the water? I was walking along the banks pondering about how such a tragedy could happen to such a picturesque ecosystem when I heard a rustling in the bushes. At first I thought it was a pervert trying to sneak a peek at me, but when I investigated the area, I found a scuffed up, dirty Howard. He was squatting by the side of the waters with his pants down. He looked at me and I looked at him. Before he could get up, I apprehended the disgusting creature with my critter screen and handed him over to the officials. Whether or not he was the major source of the fecal contamination, I will never know. But at least I will sleep soundly tonight knowing that the streets of Walnut will no longer have to fear the man known as “The Walnut Wumbo,” who terrorized countless women by tossing his own feces at them.
To preserve this natural landscape, I suggest a series of systematic checks to confirm that this stream is kept safe. Sewage systems should be kept functioning and intact to prevent any contamination. Any resources that can be gathered should be limited, as to preserve the natural order of things. Pollution and waste need to be monitored. By keeping things in shape, I will be sure that this creek will be kept spic and span!
14 3 / 2013
This was something I typed up on 5/27/10 in our ROP Computer Repair class. This was during the time when Howard was very BEM and I did everything I could to bother him.
Howard sits, hunched over the desk, and stares at the glowing screen. His worn, white shirt fits awkwardly on his body with bits of thread hanging out of the edges. Many choose to sit away from this boy. Only the bravest or the most unfortunate take the seat next to him, often with expected regret.
He sighs. His face is droopy, and his jaw hangs a little, giving him a bored, rebellious look. A chuckle comes out of his mouth every once in a while. He moves his resting head off his arm and shuffles his feet with each laugh, then returns to his original position. In a haughty manner, he types using difficult strokes and a forceful tap of the ”Enter” button. He sighs again and raises his chin slightly after entering the search, as if surfing the web was a menial task. I ask him why he acts this way but he does not respond. I cannot tell if it is because he cannot hear me through his earphones or if he is simply ignoring me.
People often question me on why I chose to befriend Howard. He offers no intellectual benefits, exhibits rude and sometimes questionable behavior, looks like a bum, and smells like fart. I used to try and reform him, but now I have learned that there is no use. Any sense of improvement in him would only cause confused anger.
His face is now about a foot away from the screen. He is playing a tacky shooting game, and with each kill, his head inches closer and closer to the bloody destruction. At the end of the round, he leans back a little with relief and looks at me typing this note.
“You must be really bored,” he deducts.
A few seconds later, he is back to the game but now he is sitting straight up with his mouth gaping open. Some people have said that they thought we were brothers. I take that with considerable offense. With every click of the mouse, Howard’s screen shakes with violence. I get dizzy after watching for about 20 seconds. He has been clicking nonstop for the last 5 minutes.
“Howard, what game is that?” I ask, trying to get him to stop.
“Thing Thing 4.”
“That game looks like crap.”
“Yeah, I’m bored as hell.”
“You think it’s fun?”
“No. How can this be fun?”
He continues clicking.
“Hey I got a 100% on my math test,” I tell him.
“So what. I don’t care.”
”I have a 99% in this class. A+!” I say.
“I have a 94. My grade is the same as yours.”
“Since when did 94 equal 99?”
I hear laughter coming from the row of computers across from me and when I look over, I see a snowboarder sliding face first down a slope. Howard dies in his game, right after defeating a boss helicopter and entering the next level. He respawns, but has to fight the long battle with the chopper again.