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What Happened to the Counsellor

What Happened to the Counsellor What Happened to the Counsellor

We’re continuing on with these galoshes.

The counsellorĀ  decided that it was time to leave the party. He was imagining the time of King Hans during the middle ages and mistakenly put on the galoshes of fortune instead of his own. Soon he found himself in the middle ages. Things weren’t at all the same. People were dressed like old times. The streets were not paved. A procession moved through the streets, which was unfamiliar. There was no bridge across the river. When he talked about the names of places he knew, no one understood him.

He went to East Gate, but there was nothing there but a meadow. He reasons that he must be drunk, but he only had one glass of punch. He thinks about going back to the party to tell the hostess he has food poisoning, but he doesn’t.

He finds a house, it turns out to be a public house. The woman inside gives him water. He asks her if she has the day’s paper. she hands him an old thing and he says that it’s a depiction of a meteor. The man beside him begins to talk to him. They talk about Latin words and places. They compare old books and printers. Some things sort of match up, but others do not. Eventually he forgot why he was there and started to drink with several men. He gets up to leave, but finds his drunk body is not cooperating and falls out into the street, where the galoshes fall off and he finds himself back in his own time. He thinks he’s been passed out drunk in the street.

What Happened to the Counsellor Observations

When this story speaks of the middle ages, it’s actually speaking of the reign of King John of Denmark; yes, the story does call him Hans. He was also known as Hans. He was king of Denmark, Norway, and Sweden until 1513. There was a lot of political reform under King Hans and he conquered Sweden.

At one point our counsellor tells himself he must be seeing a fata morgana. In plain words, he thinks he’s seeing a mirage. It’s quite interesting, you can actually look up pictures of mirages and people have them. It’s not just a mental thing; it’s a light thing and thus you can actually take pictures of a mirage. It commonly occurs at sea. The phrase is loosely based on the phrasing for fairy, but it most notoriously associated with Morgan Le Fey of Arthurian lore.

Roeskilde and Ringstedt are both mentioned in the story and they are both towns in Denmark, although spelled a little differently these days as Roskilde and Ringsted.

There are several Latin Phrases used in the story:

  • Modestia-Modesty
  • Mihi secus videtur-I think other wise, basically, “I beg to differ.”
  • Judicium-Judgment
  • Locus Docendi-The place of teaching, a schoolhouse, a place where one learns lessons, etc.

Jutland is mentioned in this story and Jutland is basically Denmark. It literally juts out into the sea. It’s also called Cimbria. Jutland is a peninsula. There are other portions of Denmark, but most of Denmark is made of Jutland.

Muscovite is another word mentioned in the story. At one point the counsellor is trying to talk to people and they think he’s speaking the Muscovite language. Basically, they think he’s speaking Russian. A Muscovite is a person from Russia, but also mica, that glassy stuff you find in rocks, just FYI. Another unfamiliar word mentioned in this story is droshky, which is basically a type of carriage. The word is Russian and Polish.

What Happened to the Counsellor Themes

Did the counsellor like his time with the galoshes? Well, he might have liked it more had he known what was going on and if he had known it was only temporary. I don’t think he would have wanted to stay there.

This guy enjoyed learning about this period of time, but when it came down to actually going there, it was a completely different thing. We’re used to the things we’re used to. Having to suddenly live a different way of life is very hard. Many of us have never experienced that, but there are a few who have. Think of people who have had to deal with sudden and devastating wars in their homeland. Think of people who have been displaced by natural disasters. Think of people who have been stranded in wildernesses they’re not used to. Ways of life have to change. People have to adjust to a new way of living if they want to survive and it is very difficult.

It’s no different for the counsellor. He finds himself in a place he doesn’t recognize. The infrastructure he’s used to is gone. People have a hard time understanding him. The only thing that is familiar to him is the pub, and that is just barely familiar to him.

Time traveling may not be all it’s cracked up to be. Too bad this guy didn’t have a Tardis.

Overall

Those darn galoshes, always getting people into sticky situations.


 
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Andersen Fairy Tales, Andersen-Hans Christian
One-elevenbooks

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The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen ChboskyThe Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

I’ve always heard that this was a good book and with my trail Scribd subscription I was able to read it.

This book is about a teenager named Charlie. There is something wrong with Charlie. It’s never entirely spelled out in the book, but Charlie has some sort of mental illness. He tells his stories in letters. He has a brother and a sister, both older. He has a mother and a father. He used to have an aunt Helen, but she died tragically, we find out how part of the way through the book.

Charlie doesn’t have any friends. It’s easy for him to cry. He mainly just watches people from the sidelines. He observes what everyone does and how they interact. This all changes when he goes to high school. He goes to a football game one night and sits beside two people. Those two people are step-brother and step-sister, Sam and Patrick. They befriend Charlie. They go to parties. They perform The Rocky Horror Picture Show in front of the movie. They introduce Charlie to new things.

Meanwhile, his brother is in college playing football. His sister is dating a boy her parents don’t want her to date. Charlie becomes an accessory to some of his sister’s secrets. Charlie realizes that he likes Sam, but he never does anything about it. He goes to more parties. He learns something about his friend Patrick and he keeps it a secret.

Things are as crazy as ever as his parents home, but a driver’s license allows Charlie to get a little freedom of his own. He is able to drive to see his aunt Helen’s grave all on his own. Charlie briefly goes out with a girl, but things don’t turn out so well because Charlie just isn’t versed in how to act around girls.

The English teacher, Bill, gives Charlie extra books to read and extra essays to write. Charlie enjoys this and develops a friendship with Bill. He is told that he is very gifted.

Charlie learns a lot in his time with Sam and Patrick and the others that become his friends along the way, but something is still broken inside of Charlie and he still has problems.

What I liked

I getĀ  Charlie. I get the people-watching he does. He learns quite a bit about society by watching people, but it’s a different thing when it comes time to put his knowledge into action. All you shy people out there, you know you can relate to Charlie. There have been times when you were the wallflower watching everyone else living life. It’s hard to get outside of that little bubble you have built yourself. Charlie is able to do this, mostly, but he still has problems related to him being the bubble so long. He doesn’t know entirely how to act around other people, and how many of us really do? Sometimes we have no idea what the right words are to say. Charlie also has whatever mental disorder he has. Mental illness is difficult because people can look at you and not see a deformity or any external indicator that you’re ill. People think you’re just being a drama queen or faking the whole thing or just being lazy. I’ve heard plenty of reasonings non-mentally ill people have for mentally ill people.

Charlie succeeds in making friends, he screws a few things up, but he learns a lot. You’ve got to hand it to him for stepping so far out of his comfort zone.

Charlie doesn’t get the girl and that’s ok. A story doesn’t always have to end in a relationship.

What I didn’t like

Charlie’s family understands his mental illness, for the most part, but not everyone else does. It’s sad how people just think he’s weird.

Charlie gets into some things that you may not expect someone his age to get into. I know teenagers are stupid, I’ve been saying this for years, have I not, but because they’re miniature adults, you kind of expect them to make good choices every once in a while and think for themselves. Charlie goes along with everyone else and that’s part of his problem. That’s what other characters tell him is his problem. He lets others decide what to do and where to go. He lets other people sway him in the wind. He doesn’t stand up and say, “You know what, maybe I don’t want to do this thing.”

The thing is, I know what Charlie is thinking; I know what he is reasoning. He’s reasoning that following other people will get him ingratiated with other people. We know that isn’t always the case. Yes, sometimes people do like to have you around when you do everything they suggest, but that eventually gets old for you and for them. You’ve got to be your own person. I’m glad that Charlie started to become his own person during the course of the book.

Overall

I like Charlie alright. I don’t know if I would hang out with him, but he’s an alright guy.



charlie, mental illness, patrick, sam, stephen chbosky, the perks of being a wallflower, the perks of being a wallflower book, The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky, wallflower
Coming of age, Family dynamics, Fiction, Finding Your Self, humor, Romantic Fiction, Social Commentary
One-elevenbooks

The Galoshes of Fortune-A BeginningThe Galoshes of Fortune-A Beginning

What are galoshes you might ask? Well, I’m glad you asked. The answer is something none of us really need to know, but I’m going to tell you anyway. Galoshes are basically shoes for your shoes. If you have nice shoes and you don’t want them to get wet, you buy a pair of galoshes, which are bigger than your normal shoes and would be slipped on over your regular shoes in order to protect your Prada heels or whatever, but I don’t think they make galoshes for high heels, anyway, think rain boots, and also remember that if you’re wearing galoshes, your feet are going to look gigantic.

Once upon a time there was a party in Copenhagen. The guests were debating about what era of time was better. One side debated that the current day was pretty awesome, but someone else said that the middle ages were better especially during the time of King Hans, whoever he may be. A newspaper came, but people kept debating.

In the foyer were two maidens, nobody noticed they were there. One was young and one was old. They looked at first to be servants, but they weren’t. They were dressed too fine and seemed to be there for a reason. The young maiden was a chambermaid to Fortune. The older one was named Care; she preferred to do her work herself.

The maid of Fortune said that today was her birthday and she was tasked with distributing a pair of galoshes to mankind. This pair of galoshes would take the wearer wherever he wished to be instantly. Care told the maid of Fortune that the wearer would not be happy, the maid of Fortune disagreed, but they waited by to see. They placed the galoshes by the door to see who would grab them.

The End

The Galoshes of Fortune-A BeginningObservations

This story is in several parts so we shall find out all about these galoshes as the story moves on.

I know Fortune refers back to Greek mythology, but I couldn’t really find Fortune teaming up with someone named Care. It may be something I have to look more into, but yes, Fortune, or Fortuna, was worshiped for a while. She was the goddess of good fortune and luck, can anyone say “Wheel of Fortune”? Look it up, it wasn’t always associated with Vanna White, but I guess you could say she is something of a maid of fortune. Does anyone ever wish they had Vanna’s job? All she has to do is point to letters and look pretty, that’s probably why she developed her own line of yarn products; she got bored with just pointing to letters and looking pretty.

I already explained what galoshes were. I guess there was a need for them, but I don’t really know anybody who wears anything like that. You have a pair of rain boots, or whatever, and that’s that. Just like I have a pair of garden boots to work outside with. You don’t wear your good shoes out in the rain, if you can help it.

The Galoshes of Fortune-A BeginningThemes

Care says that the galoshes will not make a person happy. We’ll learn more about this in the rest of the parts of the story, but we can discuss it a little bit now. The galoshes enable to wearer to be wherever he wishes to be. That’s great and all. I mean I would like some shoes like that. I want to go to Germany, click your heels three times and you’re there, different story, sorry, but still applies. It would be a really neat thing to have this item that enabled you to teleport and even time travel, but would it make you happy?

I say that if you had to go by yourself, you might be happy for a while, but things would soon lose their luster. You would get tired of going all these great places by yourself. Look, I like my alone time, but some things are just better with someone else. You need a person you can turn to and be like, “Is is normal for people to walk around naked here,” and, “…so what are we supposed to do here?” Traveling alone can kind of suck. The world is not something to experience alone.

As far as time travel, why do you think Doctor Who always has companions?

Also, it’s a too-much-of-a-good-thing scenario. Oh, you like ice cream? Have it every day! Oh you want it to be Christmas everyday? So be it! Those types of scenarios never turn out well. In the first scenario you get really fat and develop diabetes and genuinely just really want a salad. In the second scenario, sure Christmas is fun, but nothing ever gets done if it’s Christmas every day and all your money would be gone. So having Christmas everyday isn’t exactly a great idea.

Overall

This is just the beginning we’ll find out what happens with these stupid rain boots soon enough.

Illustration: the great illustration at the beginning of the post is by artist Oskar Klever.



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Andersen Fairy Tales, Andersen-Hans Christian
One-elevenbooks

The Emperor’s New Suit

The Emeperor's New SuitThe Emperor’s New Suit

This story just goes to show you that the latest trends in fashion are not always wise choices.

Once upon a time there was an emperor who loved nothing more than to get new clothes. He loved to change clothes all the time. Two men decided they could swindle the king. They told the king they knew how to weave a fabric that could only be seen by the worthy and intelligent.

The king commissioned a suit from the two men. They took the king’s money and set up empty looms and acted as if they were weaving. The king sent a man to check on the status of his suit. The two men remarked on the beautiful colors and patterns. The man did not want to be thought stupid, so he agreed that it was indeed beautiful. The emperor sent another man and he too pretended to see the clothes.

The day finally came when the clothes were to be put on. The two men helped the emperor get dressed. They told him the clothes were so light that it would feel as if they weighed nothing. They remarked that the emperor looked very good. The emperor himself could not see the clothes, so he went the whole thing because he did not want to be thought of as stupid.

He was to have a procession in his kingdom. Everyone lined the streets. They all remarked that the emperor’s clothes looked great, but no one could see them, they just did not want to be thought stupid. A child finally cried out that the emperor was naked. Everyone finally gave up the act and admitted that the emperor was indeed naked, but the emperor was too proud to go home and put some real clothes on so he continued with his procession.

The End

The Emperor's New SuitObservations

Wouldn’t somebody have caught onto this before it got so out of hand?

These guys were some pretty good swindlers or else everyone in this kingdom was stupid, could be both.

Mary Antoinette supposedly spent a lot of money on clothing when she was the queen. There have been royal figures who have been known to practically bankrupt the kingdom with all their expensive custom and designer clothes, but all I can think of is Elton John. He’s had some elaborate costumes over the years.

The Emperor's New SuitThemes

Seriously, people, he was naked. NAKED! I mean, he can be naked if he wants to; he’s the emperor, but you know, why didn’t somebody tell him he was naked? Why didn’t his trusted whomever take him aside and be like, “Look, dude, these guys are con artists. They’re not actually sewing any clothes. Everyone else told you they were because they didn’t want to look like idiots to you.”

I hate the Tim Burton of Alice in Wonderland, so shoot me, but there is definitely something worth noting about the movie. Remember how the red queen surrounded herself by people who also had deformities? They all faked it. Their big noses and giant ears were all a ruse. They wanted the queen to trust them and like them so they pretended to be like her with her giant head. They thought that if they looked normal the queen wouldn’t pay them the time of the day.

This story is a similar situation. Everyone wanted to stay in the emperor’s good graces, so they thought, so they faked seeing the clothes. Sometimes just because a person is in power does not mean they make the best choices or should have loads of people agreeing with them. You’re an independent person you can speak up and say, “Hey, the emperor is naked.”

This also goes to show that the emperor didn’t really have any true friends in all his frilliness. It was more like everyone put up with him because he was rich and he was the emperor. A true friend would be like, “Hey, buddy, you’re naked.” Good friends aren’t afraid to tell you that you have toilet paper stuck to your shoe.

Overall

If someone tells you that they have some clothes only smart people can see, then by all means wear them so we can have a good laugh.

I will hand it to this emperor on one aspect–he owned his nakedness. He just didn’t run away crying because he was naked out in public, no, he held his head high and continued his march through the streets. Look, there comes a point when you do something so embarrassing that you just have to admit you did it and actually kind of brag about it, otherwise, you’re never going to live it down. Own your embarrassment so others can’t make fun of you for it. If you take the power in a situation like this, no one can really look down on you.



con artists, emperor, hans christian andersen The Emperor’s New Suit, Hans Christian Andersen!!, invisible clothes, naked emperor, the emperor is naked, The Emperor’s New Suit
Andersen Fairy Tales, Andersen-Hans Christian
One-elevenbooks

The Red Tent Miniseries Review

The Red Tent Miniseries ReviewThe Red Tent Miniseries Review

This miniseries was created by Lifetime and is actually pretty good as far as Lifetime movies go. Someone must have pushed some more funding towards this project because the actors are better caliber, coming from Game of Thrones, The White Queen, and The Borgias just to cite a few, and the overall presentation of the movie is much better than the usual Lifetime fare. The miniseries is in two parts. It’s based on the book of the same name by Anita Diamont. I’ve read the book several times. Both are biblical adaptations of the story of Dinah.

The story of Dinah is in the book of Genesis. Dinah is the daughter of Jacob and Leah. Her brothers slaughter her new husband and all of the males of his entire city. Dinah is never mentioned again. This story is a look at what might have happened to her.

Summary

Dinah comes from a strange past. His father married four sisters. She has hoards of brothers. THe one closest in age to her is Joseph the son of Rachel. Dinah grows up with the tradition of the red tent. The red tent is where the women of the camp go to have their periods, as there were not such things as tampons and pads back then, they sat on clean straw and took a break from work. They told stories. They ate food. They did womanly things and worshiped womanly gods.

Jacob eventually breaks with Laban and moves his family into his brother Esau’s land. Jacob tried to take Esau’s birthright years before and everyone is scared, but things turn out alright. Dinah visits her grandmother Rebecca who is an oracle. They move outside of the city Shechem. There Dinah meets a handsome young man in the city. This man turns out to be a prince. His father is the king there. Dinah marries Shelem without the permission of her family. They demand all males of the city be circumcised as payment. The oldest brothers are not happy with this arrangement. Joseph tries to stop things, but it too late. Dinah wakes up in a pool of her husband’s blood. She curses her family and leaves.

Her mother-in-law finds her and takes her to Egypt. Where she has the child of Shelem, but she is barred from raising him herself and is kicked out of the house when he goes to school. Dinah lives by herself for years, but eventually gets married again and returns to the field of midwifery. By chances a million to one she meets up with her brother Joseph again. He too was treated terribly by the older brothers, but has managed to rise up and work for Pharaoh.

Dinah eventually makes peace with her past and the terrible thing that was done to her.

Observations

The movie was really well made for a Lifetime movie. It’s actually enjoyable to watch. It’s eventful. It has a time smidgen of history in it. The actors are good as far as Lifetime movie standards go. The woman who is Dinah was also in The White Queen if you happen to see her face and realize that she looks really familiar.

Jacob ages a heck of a lot while living on Laban’s land.

Differences

The Lifetime movie people played with time a bit in this story. Dinah is not as grown up as she appears to be when the family leaves Laban’s land. Jacob also doesn’t wait very long to marry Rachel in the book. The back story about Zilpah and Bilhah just isn’t in the movie. Joseph and Dinah were fairly close to age. The movie leaves out the strife between Leah and Rachel.

Jacob does not wrestle the angel in this movie, but it’s in the book. He does not meet his brother at the river. Dinah is actually younger when she first meets her uncle’s family and grandmother. She and Tamar are actually friends in the book for quite a while. Dinah sees her grandmother more than once. There is another midwife that lives among Jacob’s family, but she dies and is buried on the journey away. Ruti’s story is practically nothing in the movie.

Joseph’s story is made a much bigger part of the movie than it ever was in the book. Why can’t this just be a story about Dinah like it’s supposed to be. How come so much of Joseph was dragged into this. Joseph is absent from the plot from the time Dinah curses her family to the time Dinah meets back up with him in Egypt many years later, but yet, the movie flashes back to Joseph several times over the course of things. Look, this is Dinah’s story, not Joseph’s. There have been enough movies made about Joseph. Enough people have told his story. This is a time for the women. Ok?!

Re-nefer, called the Queen in the movie, was not as much of a witch to Dinah as the movie makes her out to be. She wasn’t exactly welcoming, but she did not kick Dinah out of her house. Dinah actually helped raise her son. She was a midwife and went to work with her midwife friend from the time she lived in Re-nefer’s house. Re-mose comes to see his mother several times over the course of his education not just once. Re-nefer was a bigger woman in the book than she was in the movie. In the movie she’s just mean; she’s not really all bad; I promise.

Re-mose is never such a brat to his mother in the book. Joseph never locks Re-mose up.

What I liked

The movie is a good movie as far as Lifetime movies go. I know it’s a miniseries, but I’m calling it a movie, get over it. Anyway, if you hadn’t read the book, you would really enjoy this movie. You would think it was a neat look at what could have happened to Dinah.

I liked that Lifetime got themselves some better actors for this movie.

What I didn’t like

There was so much of the book left out and the movie makers played with time so much in the story. I also really don’t know why they felt the need to revert back to Joseph’s story so much. THIS IS DINAH’S STORY! END OF ARGUMENT!

This movie is a bit bloody for a Lifetime movie, which isn’t really what you would expect, but you know, Lifetime may be changing for the better, we’ll see.

Parental Advice

Like I said, there’s a bit of blood, more than you would expect from a Lifetime movie. There is nudity, sort of. There are sex scenes, sort of. As far as the nudity is concerned, nothing is showing, but people are clearly naked. Things are just placed strategically so no nipples or man bits are showing. The sex scenes aren’t that revealing, but they’re there. I think there may be some butts, but I don’t entirely remember.

Overall

I liked that someone made a movie out of this book and despite all the trickery the movie people did with the plot, it’s still a pretty good movie.

 
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Literature related videos and movie previews, Movies based off of books
One-elevenbooks

The Little Mermaid

This Fable is Intended for YouThe Little Mermaid

The Little Mermaid was pretty much my favorite Disney movie growing up, but the original story is not like the movie. In fact, the movie has its own problems to deal with. The lesson that this story teaches isn’t exactly a great lesson. I’ll elaborate on that later.

Once upon a time in a wonderful kingdom under the ocean there lived a king. He lived in a great palace with his six daughters and his mother. His mother helped him take care of his daughters because his wife had died. It was a tradition that the mermaids would get to swim up to the surface of the water and look at the world above once they were fifteen years old. Each of the daughters was one year older than the next.

The youngest daughter wanted very much to see the world above. Her oldest sister went up and came back with wondrous tales. All the little mermaid knew of the world above came from things that sank into the ocean. There was a statue of a young man that was near her garden. She enjoyed looking at the statue. The others sisters went up one by one. None of them really held a great affinity for the world above. They preferred their own world. Finally, it was time for the little mermaid to go above.

She saw the world above, including a ship. She was able to see into a few of the low windows on the ship and saw a party going on. Inside was a young man, very much like the statue she enjoyed so much. Something happened at the boat wrecked. The little mermaid grabbed the prince, because that’s what he was, and saved him from drowning. She put him on the shore near some buildings. He was found and he lived. He had seen her though and would not forget her.

Her sisters found out where he lived and it was right on the ocean so the little mermaid would go and watch for him. Sometimes she saw him and sometimes she saw other people. She wanted very much to go up on dry land.

The little mermaid has the most beautiful voice under all the sea. Everyone enjoyed listening to her. She spoke with her grandmother to gain some solace. Her grandmother told her that mermaids lived to be three-hundred years old, but the people above did not live nearly so long. They had immortal souls though, mermaids did not. Mermaids turned to sea foam when they died. The little mermaid wanted more than anything to go up into the world of people. She went to see the sea witch.

The sea witch lived in a place where the waters swirled. The plants were half-plant and half-animal. They reached out to grab whatever was in their path. The little mermaid was very careful not to be grabbed. She spoke with the sea witch who let sea snakes crawl all over her. The sea witch said that if the little mermaid would trade her voice, she would have a chance to be a human. She would give the little mermaid a potion that would turn her into a human. Each step she took on her feet would feel like knives. Her mission was to marry the prince, but if he married another she would die.

The little mermaid took her potion. She was found. She was taken to the prince. He enjoyed being around her, but she could not speak. They went on walks together. They went hiking together. He talked to her all the time. After a while it was rumored that another kingdom wanted the prince to marry their princess. The prince said he was only going to visit the king, but everyone knew he was going to see the princess. The little mermaid went on the boat with him.

It turned out the prince decided that he liked the princess and a wedding was thrown together right away. The little mermaid was outside on the deck of the boat and noticed her sisters. They waved to her. Their hair was cut short. They told her it had been traded to the sea witch. If the little mermaid used the knife they brought to kill the prince the little mermaid would live, but if not, she would die by sunrise.

The little mermaid stole into the prince’s room during the night. She looked at the prince sleeping beside his bride and realized that she could not do it. She threw the knife into the ocean and jumped into the foamy waves herself.

Inside of turning into sea foam, she felt herself rise up. She was in the air with lots of other beings they were fairies. One of them told her that if she was a good fairy for three hundred years she could gain an immortal soul. The little mermaid set about her new life looking for well behaved children and working her ways towards an immortal soul.

The End

The Little MermaidObservations

It is surprising how many details Disney actually got right, they didn’t get everything right of course, but some of it was taken directly from the story. There was a statue of a prince. There were sisters. There was a king, but sadly grandmother is nowhere to be found. The story does talk of objects sinking down underneath the water. The little mermaid does have a beautiful voice. Disney didn’t screw up entirely.

I’m of the belief that every creature is different and unique. We know that one dog is not like another dog. Each dog has its own personality and life. Each person has their own life and personality. I don’t for a minute believe a creature such as a mermaid wouldn’t have an immortal soul. If people have immortal souls then mermaids would also have immortal souls. A mermaid is a creature, although mythical, enough like a person in reasoning and action that it surely would not be excluded in the soul department.

Seriously, if I’m trading my soul for a longer time on the Earth, I want at least a thousand years, not just three-hundred. Three-hundred years seems like a rip-off.

I also doubt that mermaids turn into sea foam when they die. I’m sure it’s more like various fish eat their bodies when they die, but you know, this is a children’s story, so they turn into sea foam.

<span class='embed-youtube' style='text-align:center; display: block;'><iframe class='youtube-player' type='text/html' width='560' height='315' src='http://www.youtube.com/embed/CA-eyG7lUv8?version=3&rel=1&fs=1&showsearch=0&showinfo=1&iv_load_policy=1&wmode=transparent' frameborder='0' allowfullscreen='true'></iframe></span>Themes

If the guy you love doesn’t love you back kill him or commit suicide–that’s the moral of this story. I know, what a moral! We want to teach this to our little girls? People argue about keeping stories true to their original plot, but I don’t know if that would have been wise in this case. The Disney version of this story teaches little girls that they can get the guy with enough determination, if they’re pretty anyway. The original story is pretty much like, “Oh, well, too bad, he doesn’t love you, your life is over, kill yourself.”

The little mermaid had no way of knowing that she was going to turn into a fairy when she jumped ship. She thought she was jumping to her death. She decided that rather than kill the man she loved, she would kill herself. It’s noble, in a way, but also stupid. The girl made a metaphorical deal with the Devil and didn’t have a choice; she was going to die or she was going to be a murderer, but if this was the real world, she could decide to go on living her life somewhere else and get over this guy.

She’s fifteen for crying out loud, fifteen. Do you know how stupid fifteen year olds are? Really stupid. Like, super, super stupid. It’s a whole level of stupid that we look at and go, “What in the heck?” I’m not trying to dis on teenagers, we were all stupid when we were fifteen, none of us are exceptions. We think stupid things. We do stupid things. Fifteen is not the age to be making life changing decisions. Fifteen is not the year when you say, “I love this guy with all my heart and I want to be with him forever, so I’m going to leave my family forever and drastically alter my appearance all while giving up my most cherished activity.”

First of all, I know you may argue with me–argue all you want, but you don’t really love a person when you’re fifteen. You think you do; it’s infatuation; it’s lust; it’s idolization, but it’s not love. This girl had just seen this guy through a window, they hadn’t even talked, how in the heck was she supposed to love him? Admiring a man from afar whom you’ve never met is called a celebrity crush.

Second of all, you shouldn’t run away from your family at such a young age. You’re stupid and you don’t know how to live on your own. No, seriously, if you’re fifteen and reading this, don’t argue with me. You really don’t know how to live on your own. You’ll survive for a bit, but then you’ll find yourself in a terrible situation. You need your family to grow up, even if they suck. At fifteen, you’re like a baby adult; it’s like you’re an adult with training wheels. You can sort of do adult things, but you can’t be trusted to make major decisions.

Third of all, I would call getting rid of your mermaid tail in favor of legs some major body modification; Liken this to getting a whole bunch of tattoos all at once, or bleaching your skin if you’re darker skinned, or getting really tanned if you’re lighter skinned. You should not have to modify yourself so severely for someone to like you. They should like you for who you are. If you have a tail, so be it. Not many people have tails, that’s something to brag about.

Fourth of all, she gave up her voice to try to be with this guy. That was her thing. That was the thing that was special to her. That was the thing that caused people to admire her for. It was THE thing. It was the thing that would rule her life and make her or break her. This talent, this ability, was her life. Sure, she could live without it, but why? I could technically live without writing or doing artwork, I have on occasion went some long stretches without doing either, but it’s not a time worth living. I may sound over dramatic, but it’s not. It’s just not worth it. Why be alive when you can’t do that thing that is such an integral part of yourself that there is no way you could ever separate it out? I could not cut off a piece of my body and say, “This is the part of me that’s an artist.”

The little mermaid could not cut off the piece of herself that was the singer. The sea witch did in fact cut off her tongue, but that only made the little mermaid silent. The little mermaid still longed to talk and sing. She still held that piece of herself inside. The part of herself that was still the singer was there, but she could not use her talent. You should never give up something that important to be with a person. If they ask you to or give the impression that you should do so, then you should find somebody else. It would be better to be alone rather than to live a life with someone whom you suppressed such a large piece of yourself for. In the end, you will be miserable.

Overall

I’m beginning to think that Hans has a much darker side. All of his tales seem light and fluffy mentioning fairies here and there, but there are some deep issues addresses here. Some of these people go through some terrible ordeals and make some very bad decisions all for love, or supposed love. Hans himself never had that. He was infatuated with multiple people, but never really found that person to be with. I think he held these really high ideals about what relationships should be like. I think he kind of put himself alone in the world and I think it shows in his stories.

As an end note, I wanted to post the Honest Trailer of The Little Mermaid. Like I said, I loved this movie growing up, but it doesn’t have the best message, neither does the story. Neither the story nor the movie teach a good truth. Yes, they do teach a truth to an extent. Sometimes a person does want you to change drastically to be with them. They want you to fit in their mold of a person. They don’t want you to be yourself. The story of our little mermaid should not be a blueprint. You should not change yourself so much for another person. You should not leave your life behind.

Fiction
One-elevenbooks

A Stolen Life by Jaycee DugardA Stolen Life by Jaycee Dugard

I’m trying out Scribd to see if it’s worth it and this is the first book I read with my trial. I really enjoy reading memoirs. I like seeing into other people’s lives.

Jaycee Dugard writes of a very difficult time in her life. She was kidnapped and held captive for eighteen years. Jaycee’s story hit the news several years ago. Everyone was amazed that she and her daughters had been contained in a single backyard for so long.

Jaycee doesn’t have a great life to start out with, it’s not absolutely terrible, but it’s not great either. Her new step-father is a jerk. His punishments are too severe and he won’t let Jaycee be the kid she is. One morning Jaycee’s mother forgets to kiss her goodbye for school, this is the last time Jaycee has contact with her family for eighteen years. On the way to school a van pulls up beside her, stuns her with a stun gun, and takes her away.

She is held in a small room. Soon she is raped. The man who has taken her is named Phillip Garrido. Phillip has past sex convictions and says he kidnapped Jaycee so she could help him with his problem so he wouldn’t do things to other people. He has a wife named Nancy who helped him kidnap Jaycee.

Nobody ever finds Jaycee. She hopes and hopes that someone will find her, but they never do. Phillip doesn’t seem like such a bad guy when he’s not doing drugs or raping Jaycee, but his mentality degrades as the years go on. By fourteen Jaycee is pregnant and has her first child pretty much unassisted in the rooms she is held in. She begins the job of motherhood at a very young age. Before the age of seventeen she has another child. The sexual abuse from Phillip seems to level-out after a time. Jaycee is allowed to go out places with one person or the other, but she’s scared and never has the courage to tell anyone who she is.

Eighteen years pass by and a parole officer of Phillip’s eventually finds that things are strange. Jaycee is ordered to tell the police who she really is, not the made up name of Alissa. She writes her name out for the police and this sets in motion an entire series of events for Jaycee. She has to learn how to come back into the world and how to associate with her mother and younger sister again. She has to bring her daughters into a world they have never known.

Jaycee has remained out of the public eye for the most part and has worked hard to create a foundation for families and people in need called JAYC.

What I liked

I liked learning about what Jaycee went through. It wasn’t pleasant, but sometimes we need to know the severity of something like this so we can be more vigilant about similar situations in our lives. If none of us ever knew about anything like this happening, we would never be on the watch out for something like this.

Jaycee is strong in many ways. She managed to stand up to this deranged man and manage a half-way decent life for her daughter’s despite the fact that she was confined to a small space and lacked resources.

What I didn’t like

Jaycee’s growing up time was stolen from her. Not that those years are particularly great, but a person does learn some things from being a teenager and a young person in the world. She doesn’t have those experiences. Her education was stolen from her. Do you have any idea how hard it’s going to be for Jaycee to get a normal education? Her children’s younger years were stolen from them too. They don’t get to know what’s it’s like to be young and have sleepovers and the things that normal little girls do.

Phillips is one whacked up guy. He’s evil and he’s mentally screwed over. What he did to Jaycee is very, very wrong. The thing is, I expect this type of behavior out of someone as deranged as Phillip. What I didn’t expect was the complacency that Nancy held. She went along with this. She helped kidnap this little girl. She was party to a girl being raped. She was party to drug usage. She was party to the severe treatment of other human beings including her elderly mother-in-law.

This woman has no excuse. She’s not the same type of mentally unstable as Phillip is. She knew better. She was a former nurse assistant at a nursing home. I worked at a nursing home for three years. As a nurse aide, you grow to love the people you take care, wish the best for them, and cringe at the very idea of anyone abusing them. How could Nancy put up with what was being done to Jaycee? How could she go through with this? How could she allow such severe treatment of a young woman when she spent her days taking care of people? She deserves every single hour in prison. She fell from a higher place than Phillip did. Remember, when you have more and you are more, you’re expected to do more. She had the moral high ground and she should have maintained it rather than falling into a pit of moral decay. Phillip was already there to start out with.

I don’t understand how a person could do this to another person. How can you willingly and knowingly take away someone’s life? It’s one thing if you kill a person. They’re dead. They’re not in bodily or mental pain anymore. Being dead sucks for them and their families, but their Earthly woes are over and their families know what happened. Imprisoning an innocent person and abusing them is a whole different thing. I think it’s probably worse, because you’ve taken away the life they were living and you gave them this new horrible life full of seclusion, torture, and mental weakness. You’ve made their life a living Hell. Then of course if you bring kids into it, you’re just multiplying how many lives you’ve taken away. It’s wrong to enslave a person and take away their will without cause. If this person has committed a crime, so be it, the justice system can take away their freedom, but if they’ve done nothing wrong and you just imprisoned them, then you’re just about the worse kind of person to walk the Earth.

Overall

I hope Jaycee moves on with her life. I hope she gets the GED she was hoping for. I hope she can go to college. I hope she has all those experiences she missed in life. I hope her daughters can go to college and live as normal of a life as possible. I hope that Jaycee’s foundation helps many people and people support her efforts.



a stolen life, A Stolen Life by Jaycee Dugard, being kidnapped, held captive, held captive for eighteen years, jayc, jaycee, jaycee dugard, kidnapped, nancy, phillip gurrido, two girls
Dugard-Jaycee, Memoir, Non-Fiction, True strange Happenings
One-elevenbooks

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