Directions and Maps

Today’s class is one of my favorites so far. I loved the exercise we did today. I felt like our classmates really got to know each other and break out of their shell with one another. It was fun watching the personality of my peers peek out a little. It was also very interesting to see what spoke out to students as they were drawing a map of directions to the house of the person they were partnered with. Some people remember roads and some people, like myself, remember landmarks.

This week’s readings were interesting. The essay Thomas wrote actually made me laughed. I honestly felt like I was reading something a high school girl wrote; writing an essay about the people in the high school and how some of them irritated her. “The exclamation point is so irritating and colons are so unattractive.” “I’ve grown fond of semicolons because it gives me a greater pleasure as I come across it.” I kept reading it in the voice of a young girl gossiping about her friends. I did get the message the author is trying to portray about punctuation, even though the way he was describing it was hilarious.


Gerard’s essay was probably the reading most people in the class may relate to, especially since after dealing with the most current hurricane that hit Long Island (Hurricane Sandy). Some of the scenes Gerard was describing are probably things people saw during Hurricane Sandy. Some scenes I can point out was when he was describing the fear that you probably felt when listening to the trees crack and sounds of the house shuddering. Other things Gerard described was when that man and his dog were pinned against the wall by the water and wind or when lightning hit a house and made it burn in flames. This essay was probably very difficult for some people to read because it hit a sore wound that wasn’t finished healing.


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2 Responses to Directions and Maps

  1. ktbmuether says:

    I too found Gerard’s essay very relatable after experiencing Hurricane Sandy first hand. Reading his essay was sort of eerie and brought back all of the bad memories associated with the storm. I felt like he did a really good describing the experience of a hurricane (now that I have something to compare it to).

    That being said, one passage in particular stood out to me: “When the power comes back on, it’s like a religious experience. Everything becomes possible again – bright lights,cool air, television news, ice.” I lost my power for a week during the storm. Since I live in a ~85 year old house that uses well water, that means losing running water as well. It’s strange losing power – the first few hours or even the first day isn’t so bad… but day in and day out for a week is hard. You become helpless, irritable and of course, bored. I remember I had gone to my brother’s apartment to take a (cold) shower and when I came home at night and pulled into the driveway and saw the lights on for the first time, I was overwhelmingly joyous. I almost wanted to cry I was so happy. Anyways, long story short, Gerard is right on the money with describing regaining power as a “religious experience.” You become so overjoyed and learn to appreciate what a convenience power really is.

  2. thaque29 says:

    I definitely agree with you about the in class activity. At first, I wasn’t even sure about where to start giving my directions. What would I focus on? In the end, I decided to note all the things that distract me as I walk home. It was nice hearing how other student described their way home. While some people chose to give straight directions, other chose to focus on specific landmarks or smells that let them know that they were close to home. And I also agree with you about it being my favorite activity!

    Your insight on Gerard’s essay was much different than mine. While we may have interpreted it in a similar way, I’ve never actually been through a hurricane. Even hurricane Sandy fortunately spared my family and I. His to-the-point, yet visual style was extremely effective. I felt as if I was going through the motions of preparing, dealing with, coping with, and finally rebuilding after a hurricane. However, as you have actually experienced the hurricane last year, I’m sure that this essay resurfaced many painful and powerful emotions. What was the most powerful image to you? What did you read that instantly brought your mind back to last fall?

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