Thursday, April 19, 2007

Connecting Storylines

A connection between the life of Ruth May and President Lumumba seems to be present. They both portray a common role as the innocent, loving character in their unique, individual situations. They were both liked within their own communities. The Congolese were fond of Lumumba, and Ruth May was well liked by the children of the Congo, who often played “Mother May I” with her. Both Lumumba and Ruth May in that sense assumed authoritative roles, he being the leader of the Congo, she being the leader of the Congo’s children. I also find it interesting that these two assumed leadership roles because of the nature of their status. Patrice Lumumba was a postal worker, while Ruth May was just the Price’s youngest. If I were to choose a leader, I wouldn’t exactly consider those roles to amount to something greater. Additionally, and perhaps ironically, these two leaders would also die on the same day. Lumumba was freed of imprisonment through his death, and Ruth May was freed of her illness through her death. And the way the Africans grieved and the way the Prices grieved due to these losses can also be viewed as a connection, or a similarity.

Through Rachel's Eyes

I’ve never seen a high school quite like this one. It looks like less of a learning facility and more like people put these buildings together with the ugliest pieces of material they could find. Some buildings don’t even match. Or if there is some sort of pattern, I haven’t figured it out. And the rain is pouring. I don’t know if the builders realized this scattered building situation could post a problem. There’s this thing in the middle of the whole sidewalk, and I’ve seen people avoid it and walk around it. I wonder if it is some kind of forbidden thing to do. Whatever the case, I wonder what it is there for. I’ve seen many girls wearing the same shirts and skirts. It doesn’t look like it’s a strict uniform, and if that’s the case, I wonder if they are embarrassed that they all showed up in the same thing. I also noticed that there is a lot of animal interaction going on over here. One example of this are the birds. I guess most people would find their chirping as a natural, soothing thing, but I just think that it is plain irritating. I don’t really care for random squeaks, and they need to get together to figure out some kind of four-part harmony soon before I go extremely insane.

Sunday, April 8, 2007

Orleanna and Judges Connection

At the beginning of each book, Orleanna’s narration serves as almost a prologue of what series of events is to follow. And while she doesn’t directly come out and pronounce each event so that it is crystal clear, she discusses things that allow for interpretation, and allude to what is to come. In the book of Judges, Orleanna tell us, “The day does come, finally, when a daughter can walk away from a man such as that- if she’s lucky. His own ferocity turns over inside her and she turns away hard, never to speak to him again, instead she’ll begin talking to you, her mother, demanding with a world of indignation: How could you let him? Why?” (191). And while none of us would ever suspect that it would be Leah and Nathan that she was talking about, after reading the rest of the book, I know that it was Nathan and Leah that Orleanna was subtly describing. We see toward the end of Judges, and into Bel and Serpent that Leah’s faith in and respect for her father quickly diminishes and she is no longer his biggest fan, but his worst enemy. It is cool to go back and reread portions of Orleanna’s sections, because after reading the rest of the book, some of what she speaks of that was earlier dismissed, now has a whole new meaning.

Friday, March 9, 2007

Found Poem (Rachel)

Man oh man
We got fumigated with the odor
Of perspirating bodies
Aren’t you glad you use Dial?
Don’t you wish everybody did?
Boy, what a place
There wasn’t room to breathe
The delightful odor of
Mud and dead fish
A real fire beat in my temples
And the beat of my heart
Was not my heart
Inside the bright orange rim
Of the fire, some of them
Were dancing with their bosoms
Naked as if nakedness
Were nothing special
Tears ran from my eyes
But I was hardly allowed
To complain about that
One long, drawn-out eternity
No new clothes, no white gloves
No milk and honey
And no primping
I hardly know where to begin
In all this dust and dirt
The earth reeled beneath me
It sounded like a junkyard orchestra
It scorched my eardrums
In all the ruckus,
I closed my eyes
And dreamed of real soda pop
And wept for the sins
Who had brought my family to this

Dread, dark shore

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Genesis Extra Credit Post

The one thing cool about this book is that we all have someone in our lives that is like each of these characters. We all know someone like Nathan that we want to stick in a zebra suit and feed to a random African tribe. We all know someone who so obviously craves the approval of others like Leah. We all have a Ruth May in our lives that turns the simplest observation into a television special. But another neat thing is, we can also identify with each of these characters in some point in time. We have all once felt unfairly stripped of something we think shouldn’t be so hard to ask for, like Rachel. We have all been misjudged and alienated like Adah. And like Orleanna, we all have felt completely intimidated by someone who is close to us. And this book is beginning to make me appreciate my life more than I have been doing. I am living like Paris Hilton in comparison to the lives people are leading in Africa. And the thing is, this life for them is permanent. I even appreciate going to school each day and eating the same cereal for breakfast, because for them, that is a luxury beyond luxuries. Which got me thinking… the problems that are so mainstream in our world today such as, “I am too fat” or “I am too ugly” is the least of their problems, and that would be a miracle for them if that was their biggest problem. And while our problems are still legit, we should rethink our mentality. Because we are blessed to have what we have, and we owe it to these people to appreciate what we have, because these opportunities and things handed to us are things they’ll never even have the chance to get.

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Genesis Post #2

After finishing the whole chapter of Genesis, I feel almost like a sixth member of the Price women, dragged unwillingly along by Nathan Price. And I dislike everything about him… his sermons, his garden, and his devotion to God above his own family. I realize that this might be the whole point of religion, to worship God so strongly and develop the ultimate relationship with him, but I think it is unreasonable to totally forget about maintaining relationships with those that were put on this Earth with you. It is also frustrating to be apart of a mission that for now seems to unsuccessful and I am sensing that the African natives are not exactly grasping the purpose of the Prices one year journey there. It seems like exactly how Adah pointed out, “Everything that comes of morning undoes itself before nightfall.” (30). And as of right now, I am wondering if that is the case for the mission of “spreading the Word.” That, as soon as the Prices leave Africa, all their efforts will just amount to another dust-collecting yearbook on the shelf. Changing the subject, I am a little confused… did the Grandpa come with them? I thought someone mentioned at the beginning that he was coming to Africa as well, but apart from that, I think he’s been mentioned an impressive grand total of one time more.

Sunday, March 4, 2007

Genesis Post #1

After only reading the first few points of views of the different Price women, I am beginning to wish that this story also included the point of view, or narration from the father, Reverend Price. I sense bias and some minor sense of irritation, resentfulness, and distgust towards the father. Orleanna Price reveals how her husband could never love her as a wife, Leah Price portrays her father as a dictating, alpha-male, Ruth-May Price doesn't even mention her father, Rachel Price describes him as an intimidating, and Adah Price keeps addressing the father as "Our Father" which makes it seem like she feels no distinct relationship to him. I want to get to know more about Reverend Price, as he is the reason why this whole story is about to take place. This will be hard, however, because I will only get to know him throught the eyes of his wife and daughters. I also noticed that so far, the Price women stress/bring to attention how segregated and different they feel about the African people. They keep acknowledging the skin difference, and just the overall physical appearance that sets these two worlds apart.