Saturday, December 22, 2007

week 5 part b

Dear Mr. Wayne Coffee,

I am writing regarding the fifth section (p. 151-179) of your book Boys of Winter. In this section, you speak of the last minutes of the epic hockey game in the 1980 Olympics between the United States of America and the Soviet Union. You then give the background information/history of Eric Strobel, the ex-football standout from Rochester, Minnesota. Eric also got some time in the NHL, playing for the Philadelphia Flyers. However, he preferred the leagues over in Germany because they were more physical than the NHL. But back at the game, with the United States winning 4-3 with four minutes left, Strobel was streaking down the side of the rink, but him and Phil Verchota almost collided, causing him to lose the puck. Anyways, I should get going.


Erich Rectenwald

week 5 part A

  • thwart (pg. 151)- to oppose succesfully
  • debilitate (pg. 172)- to sap the energy of strength of
One theme is teamwork and hard work can beat anything.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

week 4 part b

Dear Mr. Wayne Coffee,

I write to you again, for the fourth time, concerning yet another section of your epic novel, The Boys of Winter. In this section, you speak of Soviet goaltender, Vladislav Tretiak, and his amazing ability between the two goal posts. However, Soviet coach, Sergei Makarov, sensed a fault in his game. Makarov states that he had no idea where the explosive U.S. team had come from, being that the two rivals faced off less than a week earlier, with the Soviets winning by a landslide. Makarov noted, “Their eyes were bright. Their eyes were burning. It was a team.” This whole experience/event reminded me of the movie “Little Giants,” where a nerdy brother’s football team beats his older, more experienced brother’s team under the same tremendous odds of that the United States team was up against. Also in the section, you go in depth in Ken Morrow’s previous life. You describe him as “a six-foot five-inch shortstop, long-limbed and low-key, Cal Ripken before Cal Ripken.” He was also known as one of the best athletes in Flint, Michigan. Morrow, like pretty much all the other members of the hockey team, was gifted athletes with tremendous ability. He played in the NHL for some years with a top salary of 1.9 million. I’m noticing that all the players on the team are hard workers who were born with a lot of natural talent. Until next time!


Erich Rectenwald

week 4 part a

  • berating (p. 115)- v. to rebuke or scold angrily at length
  • acrimony (p. 129)- sharpness, harshness, or bitterness of nature

With teamwork and hard work, miracles and be achieved.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

week 3 part b

Dear Mr. Wayne Coffee,
This is my third letter to you, still concerning your epic novel, Boys of Winter. Mark Johnson, who was my favorite player on the 1980 Olympic Team, was very well analyzed and characterized in this section. His background sounds fun, especially when he would dress as a legendary Russian hockey player like Vladimir Petrov and would skate around pretending to be them. When you described Johnson doing that, it made me remember of when I was about 7 or 8 years old (and even now), when I would skate around and pretend to be a great player like Wayne Gretzky or something. Now-a-days, however, I usually play the role of either Sydney Crosby or Alexander Ovechkin, and possibly others. After reading this section on Mark Johnson, the book reinforced how much I liked him and his play style before. I also enjoyed you gong into depth about the Russian attitudes and feelings towards the play by Mark Johnson at the end of the first period, and how upset they truly were to get scored on with zero seconds remaining. Anyways, I have to get going I’ll write soon.
Erich Rectenwald

week 3 part a

  • mantra (p 77)- n. A word or formula, as from the Veda, chanted or sung as an incantation or prayer
  • disarray (p 81)- n. disorder, confusion

Another emerging theme is that hard work will always prevail.

Thursday, November 29, 2007


Arguments with parents:
  1. Usually at home
  2. It serves as a way to get across ideas why someone shouldn't have to do something
  3. Yes it helps because that way your parents know your side of the story
  4. It is unstructured
  5. You may have less of a chance of winning against your parents because it could turn to yelling, which would only make your parents even more mad.
Court Cases
  1. Court rooms
  2. Either putting someone in jail or getting refunded for things that were lost or taken
  3. Yes
  4. Structured
  5. It makes it more official, more valid, and a lot more organized.
School Debate
  1. Class rooms
  2. To determine a winner between the two schools
  3. Not really considering they aren't real court cases
  4. Structured
  5. It helps each side get its opinion in to better determine a winner

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

week 2 part B

Dear Mr. Wayne Coffey,

I am writing another letter to you to comment yet again on your book, Boys of Winter. In this section (pages 38-75), you give a lot of background information of a few of the players. The first was Bill Baker, whom you described as a poised player with a great savvy for the game. You also speak of William “Buzz” Schneidner and the “conehead” line that he was on with John Harrington and Mark Pavelich, who all grew up in the Iron Range and know each others wild style of play. You also go more in depth with mother players, like Jack O’Callahan. But one thing I can certainly tell is that there is a theme as far as the players’ mentality and personality: they are all hard workers that tend to keep to themselves, rather than flash off and brag out their talent and achievements. Coaches and people who known a thing or two about hockey have always told me to work hard but don’t brag, at least that’s what I have been told in my childhood as a hockey player. I have always known this, yet I always seem to brag about things I have done, even though it somehow comes back to bite me. It also fits with Herb Brooks’s theme of teamwork because he took “the right players, not the best ones.” This happened probably because the best ones tended to be very flashy and arrogant.


Erich Rectenwald

week 2 part A

  • haranguing (p. 46)- to deliver a scolding or long or intense verbal attack
  • ubiquitous (p. 55)- existing or being everywhere


  • " 'With so little time, you don't think anything can happen. What can happen?' " (p. 74) This quote was said by a Soviet player named Bilyaletdinov, and he is talking about at the end of the first period with just a few seconds left where the puck was at the Soviet net after a slapshot was taken at the other end of the rink by defenseman Dave Christian. The Soviets at that point were leading 2-1 and the Americans didn't have very much momentum. That quote is significant because right after Christian iced the puck, Mark Johnson, an American player, hustled down the ice and scored with 0 seconds left, which gave the American a tie at the end of the first period as well as a huge morale boost.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

week 1 part b

Dear Mr. Wayne Coffey,

In reading your book Boys of Winter, I was very touched while reading the prologue when you are explaining Herb Brooks’s funeral. The reason why I was touched by this is because I had met Herb about six months before he died. After talking to him, I realized how great of a man he was, and I was really glad that I met him. Also, just a couple of months before he died, he sent me a picture of the 1980 Olympic Hockey Team that he coached (what your book is about). On that picture was his signature, along with a note saying, “Dear Erich- Go for it.” I thought it was very nice; however the true meaning of it really did not sink in until after he died. Since then, I have kept it on my desk, right in front of where I sit to do my homework because it reminds to push myself to be the most I can. That artifact also makes me very special knowing that such a great man like Herb would send such a valued object to me. It truly shows what a great, caring person he is, and I have a lot of respect for him. Also, I would like to thank you for writing this book. I am a big fan of the “Miracle on Ice” and it’s great that you are telling the untold story. I cannot wait to read the rest.


Erich Rectenwald

week 1 part a

  • restoking (p. 16)- to poke or stir up
  • barren (p. 28)- not reproducing
One emerging theme of my book is team work and how you can accomplish a lot if you have it.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

***ACTUAL Explanation

  • The Boys of Winter by: Wayne Coffey
  • 2005
  • 273
  • It uses challenging vocabulary and is a compelling story
  • This book is about the 1980 Olympic Hockey Team, and I am a fan of hockey.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Explanation Outside Reading 2

  • I Am America (And So Can You!) by: Stephen Colbert
  • 2007
  • Nonfiction
  • 230 (Small print though and big pages)
  • The topics are mature (American Family, Race, Religion, etc...) plus when I read a few pages of the book there were many challenging words.
  • I chose the book because Stephen Colbert is very funny. He has a show on Comedy Central called "The Colbert Report" and I have always thought that show was funny.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

The Sea Inside post 3

One scene that reflected the director's point was in one of Ramon's dreams, more specifically the one where he flies around and finds Julia on the beach. The camera usage seemed like it was just a huge dollying while Ramon is flying around, but I am not sure what the technical name would be. This reflected his point because it showed how Ramon wished we could walk, which would be like us human beings wishing we could fly (that's how much Ramon wishes he could move). Another camera selection that was important was at the end when Ramon is talking into the camera just before he dies. The sequence was a zoom-out (slow) while he was talking, followed by a zoom-in as he is dying (after he drank the potassium cyanide). I am not sure what the real meaning was, however I know that the shot was a great pick (especially the slow zoom-in as he was dying) because it intensified the scene so much and it was a great pick.

The Sea Inside post 2

"The Sea Inside" and "The Diving Bell and the Butterfly" were very similar. One example, of course, would be that they both deal with a main character that is quadriplegic. However, the difference there is that Ramon wants to die while Jean-Dominique Bauby simply knows that he will die in a short time. Another difference is that the only way Bauby can communicate with the outside world is by blinking his eye, while Ramon can speak freely. That leads to another similarity, which is that they both wrote books about their experiences, however, Bauby had to blink his entire memoir while Ramon had it much easier (he could speak it and people could write it down). When it comes to which one of the two were more powerful, I would have to say that the Sea Inside definately wins. The movie gives a lot greater of insight into Ramon's life and all the struggles that he has to go through. One example would be when Ramon is leaving the house to go and meet Rosa at a hotel (the one he ends up dying in). This was a very sad moment for that family and I do not believe that the intense emotions of that scene could've been expressed in a book.

The Sea Inside post 1

The general response to this film is that I enjoyed it because it really got the audiences emotional about what was going on. Also, I think the movie's interesting because it sparks a world wide debate about whether people should be allowed to die with dignity. In Ramon Sampedro's case, I believe that he had all the right to want to commit suicide because he was sick of being a vegetable and thought he had nothing else to live for. The court, though some people may disagree with me, was right to deny Ramon the right to assisted suicide because it is against the law. Even though I am saying this, that doesn't mean I was happy that the court made that decision. As far as the friends of Ramon are concerned, I give them a round of applause for having the courage to help Ramon even after it was declared illegal and knowing they could've gone to jail.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

week 6 part 1

The last section ended with Aron chopping off his arm and leaving trying to find help. While he is leaving, the rescue team has found his vehicle. There were messages sent out to a few states: Georgia, Utah, and Colorado. The messages were to send all cars to try and locate Aron and his Toyota Tacoma with license plate "Eight-Four-Six-Mike-Mike-Yankee." After looking around for a few hours after the messages were sent, Ranger Glenn Sherrill contacted Kyle Ekker, the man who sent out the message, containing information of the whereabouts of Aron's truck. The news of the truck's discovery got to Elliot, Aron's roommate, around 9:37 am. He began calling people, as did Rachel, Aron's sister. After a couple hours, they had coordinated two groups of friends and rescuers that were making immediate plans to drive to Horseshoe Canyon. They called Ekker to reassure that they were looking, and Ekker welcomed them to join the search.

At 11:34 am, Aron sets off to find help with a plastic grocery sack wrapped around his stub. He makes a sling out of his empty CamelBak backpack. Next he sorts the rope into 2 knot-free stacks, and then he takes his Air Traffic Controller rappel device to bend each rope strancd through one of the twin slots in the mouth of the gadget. He then uses jerking motions to trigger the ATC and hopefully help him get up the wall. Aron keeps telling himself "No stupid mistakes, you're almost there." He sees people with Germanic accents, who are encouraging him to rest while he knows he needs to hurry and get help. However, the people are able to supply Aron with a few Oreos. Still trying to get help, Aron runs into Ranger Steve Swanke, or to Aron, his rescuer. At the hospital, Aron is able to call his mom and others (such as Elliot) to tell him that he is ok.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

week 5 part 2

This section begins at day 5 of Aron’s entrapment. He once again attempted the amputation of his right arm but failed due to the dullness of his knife not being able to break his wrist bones. Another problem is his deathly case of dehydration. Right now, he is solely relying on his own urine as a beverage, being that he drank all of his water a day or two ago. At first, he planned to not even make it to Tuesday night, which is where is now, so his new goal is to survive until Wednesday at noon. As night enters Aron’s realm for the fifth time, so did the cold temperature. He constantly dozes off and has flashbacks of events that have happened in him that he would enjoy at that specific point. One example would be while he is at his grandma’s and he is enjoying a 7-Up in a Styrofoam cup with cylindrical ice cubes. He continues escaping into trances all the way until the next morning. Aron also continues to etch things into the wall with his knife as well as leave love notes in his camcorder. Believing that he will die very soon, he etches his name “ARON” and then “OCT 75-APR 03” with a “RIP” just above that. Suddenly, he envisions a little boy, perched on his right shoulder, giggling and prancing around, and Aron realizes that he is going to live, somehow, someway, he is going to live.

At 9 a.m. on Wednesday, April 30th, Aron’s manager at work, Brion After, came into work and realized that Aron has missed his second day of work (which is extremely out his character). Brion begins to worry, and from that point on, Aron’s search begins. Brion begins by calling his mother, and the two decide to try to come into contact with someone who Aron had spoken to regarding his whereabouts for the previous weekend. Brion calls his roommate, Elliot, as well as the Aspen Police while Aron’s mom tries to hack into Aron’s e-mail to see if he sent out any e-mails telling people where he would be. When Brion gets a hold of Elliot, Elliot is sent to search Aron’s room and finds his Denali ’02 file (the file of his climbing team). Brion then sends out an e-mail to the leaders of that team, Janet, Bill, Jason, and David. Brion then has Elliot come to work to keep up with the e-mails and messages regarding Aron because he was scheduled to go on a 2 week vacation the next day. Aron’s mom contacts Sonja, Aron’s sister, as well as his dad to discuss the issue even though both are already busy and are unable to come and help. Brion and Elliot were also able to talk to Brad Yule, the last known person to see Aron. Brad informed them of his canyoneering schedule. Another helpful resource was Daniel Hadlich, another friend of Aron, who was told that Aron would be at Holy Cross Couloir on Friday and Saturday. Meanwhile, Aron’s mom and Elliot are having a rough time locating his truck because they both are unable to recall his license plates. Leona, however, was able to figure out his license number and would call the sheriff’s office in the morning when they opened.

It then becomes day 6 for Aron, and he cannot believe that he is still alive. He shocked that he has survived the nights’ hypothermic conditions. He then adds another portion to his camcorder journal. He attempts one final time to chip at the boulder with a smaller rock, and once again fails. Angered, he begins to thrash his body from side to side, when he suddenly feels his arm bend unnaturally. That’s it. He realizes that he can bend his arm enough and break the bones, virtually splitting his arm in two, which would make very easy for him to cut through his arm. He then keeps attempting to break his arm when POP. It’s broken. Aron quickly grabs his knife and begins cutting and opens up a hole in his wrist. He moves his fingers around, making a mental image of what he needs to do to free himself. His first pattern is sorting, pinching, rotating, and slicing the nerves and veins. After a while, he comes to a very strong tendon which he can’t break. Eventually he takes his pliers and rips it apart, and he then continues with a new pattern: grip, squeeze, twist, tear. After a good hour, Aron is free. However, he now needs to hurry up and get to a hospital, which could take 6 to 7 hours.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

week 4 part 2

In the winter of 2003, Aron was focused on the 9 14000-ft mountains that he was climbing. He was adjusting his energy week-by-week to another challenging peak or route. Some of his different adventures included skiing Mount Sopris in Colorado as well as a solo trip to Cathedral Peak. He took his skiing trip with a friend, Rick Inman, and he says that it felt amazing to be free
of his powder-hound attitude (which he got from his friends) that had lead him into some trouble. On his solo trip to Cathedral Peak, he climbed and skied the east gully on the south ridge.

It's day four for Aron, and he has been awake for 57 hours (and trapped for 50). He feels that he is suffering some odd type of hypothermia. He cannot sleep, nor can he stay awake. Aron continues to think obsessively about water, and he believes that it is driving him insane. It's midnight, on Tuesday April 29. After several hours of debate (with himself), Aron decides to try drinking his urine, being that he only has a half-cup of water left. He takes a sip of the salty, tangy, and bitter beverage and doesn't gag nor puke. He questions whether it is safe to drink his urine and figures that since he drank about half of what he peed before he feels queezy, that he is even more unsure. However, the next morning, he decided to gulp down the remaining sips of his water supply. Just minutes after Aron realizes that because he is out of water, he is "f***ed."

week 4 part 1

"Surprising myself, I press on the blade and slowly draw the knife across my forearm. Nothing happens. Huh. Repeating the act, I press harder with my palm on the tool's grip. Still nothing. No cut, no, blood, nothing. Extracting the short knife, I vigorously saw back and forth at my forearm, growing more frustrated with each unproductive attempt. Exasperated, I give up." (page 165, said by Aron Ralston.)

This quote is important because it explains how tough it was for Aron to amputate his arm. This is his first attempt, which was on the third day. However, Aron actually cuts off his arm on the fifth day (so the quote is about his first attempt). Being that this whole book is based upon Aron's self-amputation, I feel this quote can fit the category of "important".

Monday, October 8, 2007

Reaction DBATB

I had a few reactions to the memoir, "The Diving Bell and The Butterfly." One of them was that I couldn't wait for it to end, and not in a good way. To me, this book was very slow, which I didn't like. I feel bad saying this because I know that Bauby put his heart and soul into that book but I just didn't like it. I know that everything that the author was telling us was significant to him and he really wanted the readers to like it, but I just think I didn't enjoy reading this book. It was also confusing how the book didn't really have any flow or plot. It was just a bunch of stories put together, and none of them really based on each other or didn't build action.
On the other hand, another reaction was that I have a lot of respect for Jean-Dominique Bauby. It really shows a lot about his character when he makes a memoir when he can't even move. To me, he is a hard working and intelligent man who loves the people who matter to him. I mean, who doesn't have a lot of respect for a man who is fully paralyzed and still manages to write a novel? My personal opinion was that one of the ideas for his book title (besides the Diving Bell, the Eye, and the Pressure Cooker) could have been "Iron Man." It's kind of cliche I know but it's true.
If Bauby would have been able to recover, I think his life would have been a lot different. He would have spent a lot more time with his friends and family and less time at work. I think he would've enjoyed more of his "Mitra-Grandchamp," and would have tried with all his might to do so. All-in-all, Bauby was a tremendous man who deserves the respect from everyone who reads his memoir.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

week 3 part 2

There have been many events occurring in my memoir up to this point, and it definitely has it strengths. One example of a strength that this book has is that it is extremely detailed. I really like how the author describes thoroughly and gives the readers an in-depth look at all the experiences he has been through in his past and all the struggles he going through now. One weakness, however, is that it is perhaps too detailed. Don't get me wrong, the details are excellent when he's in action but sometimes nothing is really happening and he still feels the need to use a lot of details. This sort of makes the book slow, which I am not a big fan of. It's kind of hard for me to talk about the issues in this book because I have never really experienced any of them. The only thing I could say was that it seems like he has an interesting life, but I don't think I would want to live the same lifestyle as Aron. This is so because the mountaineering he does is so complicated and dangerous, and I just don't think I would be up to it. Because this is a known event, I don't know if predicting would be necessary. I already know what happens: he eventually amputates his arm.

week 3 part 1

1) Aron is talking about how much luck he acquired within 12 months after he retired from the corporate world. He came across many close-calls while on his mountaineering trips in that time. One example was when he was climbing Longs Peak, which was the last summit of the Front Range. While Aron was climbing, he attempted to throw his backpack onto the summit, which failed. The pack ended up hitting an overhang, and it bounced back over his head, free-falling over 100 feet. Luckily for him, the pack got wedged between a two-foot crack and stopped (instead of sliding 2 thousand feet down the mountain). However, he realized then that he could not make the descent that he planned because now his crampons and ice pick were not available. He finished his descent with just an ice axe, and nearly fell a couple times from a drop-off that would've led to his death. After that chapter of close calls, he spoke of day three on being stuck. By this time, he has stopped trying to chip away at the boulder and expects to live another 1.5 or 2 days unless he is able to get himself out of there. He continues to think about his water supply, and with only 10 ounces left he'll have to make that last at least one more day. With his survival doubtful (at least in his mind) he begins to pray, which is something he failed to do before. He asks God for a sign to tell him what to do, and then claims he will trade him his arm, his soul, or anything if God can get him out of there. He struggles through the night as his pain grows and so does the struggle. He is getting very cold and is having a tough time heating himself up. He is running out of hope, and he attempts to saw off his arm for the first time. Nothing. The blade is too dull.

2) Aron Ralston was born October 27th, 1975, in Indianapolis, IN. When he was 12 years old, he moved to CO with his family. There, he found his passion, mountain climbing and trekking. He is most famous for when he self-amputated his arm when it was caught in May 2003 (the reason he is writing this book). He cut off his lower right arm with a dull knife after 5 days of trying to separate his arm from the boulder. Since the incident, he is a public speaker and is still climbing mountains.

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Sunday, September 30, 2007

part 2 (Between a Rock and a Hard Place)

1. creepy-crawlies (page 54): This word is loaded because whenever I hear it or read it, it sends a kind of jitters down my spine. The author uses it because it is a creative and very connotated way to talk out bugs and spiders and what not.

erode (pg 58): This word is loaded because it makes me think of a cruel, well, almost explosion or burning. The author uses it to better describe the how he is trying to break down the chalkstone (unfortunately it's not working).

daze (pg 64): This is loaded because it somewhat calms me down or makes me feel tired. The author uses it to speak of a sleep that he begins to enter as a cool breeze hits his body.

chill (page 65): This is loaded because it makes me think of a deep cooling or freezing. The author uses this to better describe how cold the night air is in the canyon.

dexterity (page 67): This is loaded because it is mysterious-sounding, yet intelligent as well. The author uses this because it is complex and adds depth to his writing.

obliterated (page 75): This is loaded because it creates a greater image of something being destroyed. The author uses it to really emphaseize how, in this case, the wind was so powerful that it can destroy his footprints in seconds.

burros (pg 77): This is loaded because it makes me think of a deep hole. The author uses it because it is a good alternative word to use instead of using the boring term, hole.

flamboyant (pg 77): This is loaded, to me, because I believe that this is a very funny word and I use it a lot. The author uses it to spice up his writing and keep it from being dull.

binge (pg 85): This is loaded because it reminds of a bad diet. The author uses it to show that he did a lot of skiing that vacation.

bushwhacking (pg 91): This is loaded, to me, because my family calls packer fans "Bushwhacking cheese heads," and I have always found the word to be funny. The author uses it really described the torture he went through the previous night.

2. Aron endures his first night being with his arm wedged between the rock and the wall. He is still trying to break the chalkstone with his knife, but is still unsuccesful. He calculates in his head that it's going to take at least 150 hours to break the rock enough to get his arm out, so he gives up on that idea. While he is stuck, he thinks about the first time he visited Utah and all the people he met and all the things he did. Aron then came to day two, and he was feeling an increase of energy from the light in the canyon (that same boost from when he hiked through the night). He also is able to slide a piece of webbing onto a horn that would make it easier to move the boulder. After many unsuccesful attempts, he finally is able to slip the webbing into a fissure to the right of the horn. Unfortunately, the system was too weak compared to the immense strength of the boulder. Aron is beginning to become doubtful about his survival.

3. I'm just going to start out by saying: I am happy to not have to go through what Aron is going through. Even with his amazing wit, he is still unable to free himself of the boulder.

outside reading part 1 (Between a Rock and a Hard Place)

1. It's a Saturday Morning, April 26th, and Aron Ralston left his truck and set off on a bike ride along the Canyonlands National Park. This journey would take him most of the day, and in his backpack is 25 pounds of supplies and equipment. To eat, he has a gallon of water in his CamelBak hydration pouch, a one-liter Lexan bottle, two burritos, and a chocolate muffin; he's going to be hungry at the end of the day. Most of the weight, however, comes from his rapelling gear, which includes 5 total carabiners, a combination belay and rappel device, a climbing harness, his rarely used Leatherman-knockoff multi-tool (with two pocketknife blades and a pair of pliers), etc... Along with those items, Aron is carrying a CD player with several Phish CDs, some AA batteries, a digital camera, and a mini camcorder. Aron is wearing some running shoes, thick wool socks, Lycra biking shorts under a pair of beige nylon shorts, his favorite Phish t-shirt, and a blue baseball cap. Tomorrow will officialy cap his 5 day trip, and he will end it by biking a 108 mile trail called the White Rim Trail in Canyonlands National Park. He leaves his bike and begins to hike, and on his way hiking, he spots two young women and begins conversation with them. One is named Megan, she is a brunette who seemed to be the most outgoing of the two, and the other is named Kristi, who is a blond with freckles along her forehead. Both women are in their mid-twenties and both live in Moab. As they the three conversate, they learn that they all enjoy slot canyoneering. Aron states that his favorite slot canyon is by far Neon Canyon, a named branch of the Escalante River system in South Central Utah. Just a few minutes later, the three come to the first section of difficlut down-climbing, which is a steep descent where it's better to turn in and face the rock. Thirty feet later is another drop-off. After Megan has descended from this drop, she finds that her bag is soaking wet. It turns out that her hydration system hose lost its nozzle when she threw her bag over the ledge. She quickly grabs the nozzle and puts it back on, which saved her from having to return to the trailhead (though she did lose precious water). The air above them is hot and only getting hotter, while the air where they are located, down in the canyon, is crisp and cool. The three of them come to the West Fork in the canyon, which means Kristi and Megan are going to separate from Aron. The three agree on meeting up at Granary Spring Trailhead when Aron is done, being that his hike is going to be longer. Continuing on, alone, Aron begins to listen to his Phish CDs and gaze and the beautiful world. As he comes to another drop-off (where a waterfall would be if there was water) he begins to realize just how deadly his hobby can be, and how one wrong move can kill you. He conquers it. He comes to another ledge that is just slightly taller than the one he just did (about 12 feet high). However, he sees a chalkstone ledge that, if he can step on it, should get him to only 9 feet to descend. He decides to go a different way, however, and begins to dangle from the ledge. As he is dangling, he feels the stone shaking and instinctively lets go. When he looks up, he sees a boulder falling, and he can't move backwards or forwards because then he will fall off a ledge. He quickly decides to get his head out of the way, but his arm suffers. The rock pinches his right arm between itself and the wall. The pain begins to ease a little bit, but when he goes to get a drink of his water, he finds his container to be empty. Luckily, he manages to reach his one-liter bottle, but unluckily, he drinks over a third in three seconds. The farthest part of his arm that he can feel is the wrist. Aron realizes that he is "f***ed." However, he still has most of his utilities, and he begins to brainstorm ideas about how he can get out, most of which involves his friends sending out search teams for him. He keeps considering possible ways to get him out of there(self-amputation, pouring battery acid on the rock, and also to excavate the rock around his hand), and none seem appealing, or do-able, to him.
The next chapter is about him when he was younger, living with his family. He moved from Indianapolis to Colorado. Before the big move, he looked over some encyclopedia books to view where he was moving, being that he had never been west of the Mississippi River. He hated it already. The pictures of all the mountains terrified him. However, his parents reasured him that he wouldn't have to ski to school and he wouldn't have to climb a mountain just to get to his friend's house. His parents took him out there before they moved, and he decided that Colorado was not so bad after all. When he moved, he joined the ski club, and by the second day, he was racing down the hills beating all his new friends. But the fun did not stop there. That summer, he went on a backpacking trip in Rocky Mountain National Park. After that two weeks, he "was poised on the brink of a love affair." He climbed his first 14,000 feet-high mountain, Longs Peak, in July of 1994 with his friend, Jon Heinrich. The mountain is the 16th highest in the sate and one of the most known. He did many more trips, such as whitewater rafting, which eventually lead to him becoming a rafting tour guide. He also graduated from college with a B.S. in mechanical engineering, a double major in French, and a minor in piano performance. One time, on a camping trip, he encountered a bear, but only suffered a few cuts on his foot (and some lost food).

2. Aron Ralston is a great person who is very intelligent and very nature savvy. By the sounds of it, he has done a whole lot of mountain work (such as treks, adventures, etc...) and seems to have a complete and utter passion for it. I feel very bad for him though because when he got his arm stuck, it was a complete freak accident that no one could have avoided. I also do like his ability to handle (or somewhat handle) the pressure as he tried to slow things down and try to figure out what was going on. As for his past, before he moved, I don't think he even remotely thought that him moving would end up giving him his greatest passion(s) in life.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

This I believe ASSIGNMENT (not essay)

2.David Gessner
3. Experiencing a Feeling of Wildness
4. He believes in wildness inside ourselves and in the real world.
5. One example is that he uses a quote by Thoreau, an author, about how wildness is the preservation of the world. Another example is that he says he experiences "wildness" when he was holding his dad's hand during his last breaths.
6. My favorite part is when he says that he saw a big hump-back whale jump out from the water. I like this because I have always liked whales and it would be really cool to see one.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Goal for Sophmore Year

I have quite a few goals for this school year. I'd say that my biggest goal would be getting an A- or A average. I am not sure what that is as far points go, but thats what I want to achieve. This is my goal because if I manage to do that, not only will it look good on my college transcript but also it will let myself know that I am capable of achieving that as well as pushing myself to do well in school. That is my main goal for this year.

The thing I am most anxious about at EHS

The thing at EHS that I am most anxious about is probably not getting into trouble. I am anxious about this because in my past I have gotten into trouble at my other schools before this. My problems have varied, from disrupting a class to making fun of other kids. I'm not trying to scare you Mr. Hatten, I am just pointing it out. Hopefully I will be able to not get into trouble because it will go on my college transcript, and that just doesn't look good to colleges. That is what I am most anxious about here at EHS.