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Voyage in Time

Several years ago, I read an article on DNA and how new technology can now help identify relationships and solve crimes through looking at the genetic code. The technology has certainly helped several scientists to make an interesting discovery: In a cave close to a small town, an ancient human skeleton had been discovered. After careful analysis, scientists realized that the skeleton belonged to a person that was a distant relative of the town’s schoolteacher; and the teacher only lived several miles away from the cave – the teacher has found his ancestor that lived thousands of years ago.

I have always tried to imagine what would my ancestors look like back during the time of the dynasties. It would be interesting to know what jobs they held and how they lived, but I know little about my ancestors. On my dad’s side of family, it is a tradition to keep a “Jia Pu”, or a written record of the family line; but I have never seen it. On the other hand, I have never heard that my mother’s family does such record keeping. My dad’s side is more focused on farming, so many are farmers. While my mom’s side leans toward education, art, and literature, so most of them are scholars. The oldest family members I have met are my mom’s grandparents. I do not remember much about meeting them, however, since I was too young when my mom took me to visit them. It is a miracle for a family line to travel such a long way against the current of time. In the beginning, the ancestors had to survive in the harsh wilderness, escaping the claws of beasts and wrath of nature. Then they fought their way through endless famine, war, dynasty revolutions, foreign invasions, and all the other chaotic events to let their offspring stand today.

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Someone Like You

“Someone Like You”

Singer: Adele

Writers: Adele Laurie Blue Adkins, Daniel Dodd Wilson

I heard that you’re settled down
That you found a girl and you’re married now.
I heard that your dreams came true.
Guess she gave you things I didn’t give to you.

Old friend, why are you so shy?
Ain’t like you to hold back or hide from the light.

I hate to turn up out of the blue uninvited
But I couldn’t stay away, I couldn’t fight it.
I had hoped you’d see my face and that you’d be reminded
That for me it isn’t over.

Never mind, I’ll find someone like you
I wish nothing but the best for you too
Don’t forget me, I beg
I’ll remember you said,
“Sometimes it lasts in love but sometimes it hurts instead,
Sometimes it lasts in love but sometimes it hurts instead”

You know how the time flies
Only yesterday was the time of our lives
We were born and raised
In a summer haze
Bound by the surprise of our glory days

I hate to turn up out of the blue uninvited
But I couldn’t stay away, I couldn’t fight it.
I’d hoped you’d see my face and that you’d be reminded
That for me it isn’t over.

Never mind, I’ll find someone like you
I wish nothing but the best for you too
Don’t forget me, I beg
I’ll remember you said,
“Sometimes it lasts in love but sometimes it hurts instead.”

Nothing compares
No worries or cares
Regrets and mistakes
They are memories made.
Who would have known how bittersweet this would taste?

Never mind, I’ll find someone like you
I wish nothing but the best for you too
Don’t forget me, I beg
I’ll remember you said,
“Sometimes it lasts in love but sometimes it hurts instead”.

Never mind, I’ll find someone like you
I wish nothing but the best for you too
Don’t forget me, I beg
I’ll remember you said,
“Sometimes it lasts in love but sometimes it hurts instead,
Sometimes it lasts in love but sometimes it hurts instead.”

Adele has a low and slightly husky voice, which graces this song immensely. I can feel her emotions seeping out through every word. She sings about love in this song. However, I adapt this song to friendship, thus the part about marriage does not apply to my interpretations. The lyrics remind me of my primary school friend. She has certainly found new friends in middle school and now high school. I am very happy for her yet at the same time I hope that she will not forget me. The part where Adele sings, “sometimes it lasts in love but sometimes it hurts instead” is certainly true. Again, in my case, it’s friendship. It cures people but also cuts them. It warmed my heart during the years of primary school. We saw each other everyday, thus it was easy to forget what a luxury it was. However, we drifted apart later on after primary school graduation. Even though I went back almost every summer and we would always go out, I could feel the bond starting to fade, like a colored painting placed under the scorching sun.

Just as Shakespeare expressed in Sonnet 60,

“Time doth transfix the flourish set on youth
And delves the parallels in beauty’s brow,
Feeds on the rarities of nature’s truth,
And nothing stands but for his scythe to mow”.

The same lines of the poem was used in Tiny Times, a movie telling the story of four friends and their relationships from high school to work. They fought their way through the challenges and problems in their friendship. In a way, they defied time. Sadly, when I watched this movie with my friend when I went back, I knew that the usual atmosphere between us has changed. We walked different paths, in different times, through different ways. But when time declares war, I still hope that we can declare victory.

Lyrics are from: azlysrics.com

Link to Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OH9-UQ6YMRw

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Banned Books – An Unwise Decision

Highland Park ISD has suspended after the protesting of parents on the books’ mature contents. Among those books, some are classics, while the others are nonfiction and contemporary fictions. The parents assert that the novels’ graphic sexual contents and strong languages are corrupting the students’ minds and are inappropriate for a classroom-learning environment.

During the school meetings, the parents argue that high school students should not be exposed to the hardship of adults and the cruel face of society. It is a reasonable assertion, for it is in a parent’s nature that we can find the protectiveness for his or her child. However, exposure to the harsh contents of the novels may bring much more benefit than harm to the students. High school is the last shelter before college. In college, independence is key. Without parents and teachers’ constant guidance and guardianship, students may often find themselves in unfortunate situations. For example, the bars by the college are nests for criminals. Drug or rape crimes are often being reported in college or at the bars. Thus students have to know how to take care of themselves and vaccinate themselves with an adequate amount of knowledge on the cruel side of life, such as rape. The novels often provide strong images of the characters fighting in life and overcoming the hardships. The novels may then inspire the students to face their own problems and troubles with determination and courage. By learning about the harsh contents at school under the leading of a teacher, students may truly understand the present and lurking hardships of life, thus they can better prepare themselves for the future.

Also, some parents suggest that contemporary young adult novels taint their children’s minds with obscene languages and graphic sexual descriptions, thus the students should read more classics instead of the more modern ones. However, in the English curriculum, Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse is considered a classic. However, the classic still contains sexual images. Contemporary novels contain no less value than classics. Instead, their different writing styles can open the eyes of young adults to a different point of view of the world.

Because of their protective nature, parents often try to wrap their children in sugarcoated blanks in pillow-filled rooms. Ironically, their actions are actually sending their children to doom. After all, survival is for the fittest. Without previous knowledge or even exposure to the tough world, a child will be lost and destroyed by the manipulative society, like an insect being smashed under someone’s foot. Learning to become a fighter in life is much better than avoidance of the acerbic reality.

Link to article: http://www.dallasnews.com/news/community-news/park-cities/headlines/20140921-highland-park-isd-suspends-seven-books-after-parents-protest-their-content.ece