April 27, 2006

I had a bad day...

I'm sitting in my Thinking and Writing class this morning when my mom calls me unexpectedly. Luckily, my cell phone was on vibrate, so I simply turned it on silent and I texted her back. She returned with a text that said, "She's going to the institute in Texas to help her with her anorexia..." Trying to hold back the tears, I tried to remember the many signs that my best friend showed that she was in fact an anorexic. Not that this is literature in any way, shape, or form, I felt that it would allow me to free the things that are in mind.

Let me start by saying that I have known this girl (we will call her "beth" even though that's not her real name) since I was in pre-school. Our first halloween was when I dressed up as the mouse and she dressed up as the cheese. We became the best of friends. We did everything together...Same kick ball teams at recess, same favorite color, same favorite soccer player; Everything we did, we did it together. Then we hit high school. We still were best friends; however, Beth began to isolate herself from me and the other sudents. We were both on the cheerleading squad and Beth had always strived for perfection. I noticed Beth's weight loss in eleventh grade. She was a 5'4'' blonde who usually weighed 120. (Note that she was a soccer player, baskeball player, cheerleader, dancer, and track athelete.) She was made of muscle and was so beautiful. For lunch, she would eat either lettuce, carrots, or cucumbers. She never let anyone see how much she was eating because she would hide her food. After we graduated and attended our first year of college, Beth dropped to a size zero in pant size and even had trouble getting them to fit because they were too big. She died her blonde hair black and began painting her nails black...come to think of it, she wore nothing but black.

I don't really know where I'm going with this. I've never really been put in a situation where the person whom I really care about can do such a thing to their body. Beth is being sent away to Texas on Monday, May 1, 2006. This is twenty days before her nineteenth birthday. She is down o 85 pounds and refuses to eat anything. It just breaks my heart because this girl could have been anything she wanted to be. I'm not saying her life is over, but this is definately going to be an on-going problem, regardless of the help she receives. Looking back now, I wish I would have said something to her about her problem. I would have told her that she is perfect no matter what she looks like and thin ISN'T in. I would have told her anything to help make her be herself again. I am at a loss of words. After crying all morning and criticizing myself for not telling her that she had an eating disorder, I feel completely drained...both emotionally and physically. I wish I would have said something to her because I now realize that she would not have been in the situation she is in today. I feel like I am losing my best friend...I pray for her and I hope that the man above can make her right again. It is such a shame that she has to put herself through this along with her family and friends. I'm sorry if this doesn't make sense...I just needed to get these thoughts out of my system.

Posted by ElyseBranam at 01:09 PM | Comments (2)

January 23, 2006

Literary Hero

Elyse Branam
January 23, 2006
Literary Hero

Webster’s dictionary defines the word “hero” as “A person noted for feats of courage or nobility of purpose, especially one who has risked or sacrificed his or her life.” Jack Kerouac is one of many literary heroes. Even though the Kerouac became a depressed drunk, his literary work and his attitude towards his work was just as intense as the books he has written. His style of writing, before he became a drunk and depressed, was said to be “…beautiful, enrapturing, and original…especially considering the times that he lived.”
One of Kerouac’s most appreciated novels is an autobiography that was published in the year, 1957. “On the Road” seemed to capture the spirit of the citizens in the 1950s. The book reached many people’s homes and became an overnight sensation. Why was it so sensational? The sensation was due to a “semi-fictional exploration of the freedom and longing that is a core part of human nature.” The phrase “Beat Generation” which is a “A group of American writers and artists popular in the 1950s and early 1960s, influenced by Eastern philosophy and religion and known especially for their use of nontraditional forms and their rejection of conventional social values” was coined when the novel was published.
After skimming through the novel, once again for interesting quotes, I found one that really stuck out…
“The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn, like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars..."
-- Jack Kerouac, "On The Road”
There is a myth that before the book came out in stores, he spent three weeks typing it non-stop. He used one continuous sheet of paper and went through several drafts after the third week. Many have noted that “The fury of Kerouac’s original typing session can be compared to that of a jazz musician, improvising using the excitement of spontaneous creation as the fuel for his masterpiece.” Personally, I couldn’t agree more!
The novel “On the Road” and Jack’s other novels have made a great impact on America’s literacy. Jack’s “spontaneous prose” explained stories about the Beat Generation. His novels represented him as a talented spokesperson for the youth during the 1950s.
Kerouac’s “On the Road” is a narrative that is told in an ongoing block of text. The “On the Road” scroll was sold at an auction for a whopping $2.4 million dollars. The scroll is currently on a world tour for four years, where it will be visiting different museums and libraries.
Recently, after thirty-seven years of consideration and planning, Francis Ford Coppola has announced that he is ready to bring “On the Road” to theatres. This will allow the citizens to visualize the amazing work of such an intellectual who wrote in-depth novels that came from the mind of “the great Jack Kerouac.”


Posted by ElyseBranam at 10:49 PM | Comments (0)