In the baseball world, the majority of the championships belong to the Yankees. However, The Philadelphia Phillies is the oldest team to date in any major league with a 127 year history but they only have one championship won while the Yankees have won 26 championships. After October 2008, they finally added another banner to the lonely banner hanging that was won in 1980. They beat the other feel good story team of the year, Tampa Bay Rays, 4-1. The Rays were the youngest team to make the World Series in the history of the league. The previous season, they had the worst record in all of baseball but this year, the Rays’ led the way and gave them a bright future to a past that was darker and gloomier than any other team. Both teams deserved to make it to the World Series and although the Rays haven’t won a championship, the future looks brighter than any other team in the league.

The city of Philadelphia was one where dreams never became true. The Phillies have the most losses in baseball history. When the season began, nobody saw them even close to winning a championship. They had to rely on a closing pitcher who had a bad history and their ace pitcher was a 24 year old and also, their next best pitcher was a 45 year old man whose body seems to be on the brink of collapsing. They also had numerous injuries to their best hitters and add it all up, nobody really seemed to be thinking about them. However, the closing pitcher, Brad Lidge, became a pitcher nobody could hit off of, their 24 year old ace pitcher, Cole Hamels, became one of the best starting pitchers in the league, and their 45 year old pitcher, Jamie Moyer, used his experience and wisdom of the game to fool hitters.

Brad Lidge after striking out the last hitter.                                                                   

Cole Hamels winning the World Series MVP.

Jamie Moyer celebrating with fans after finally winning a championship.

[youtube=http://kr.youtube.com/watch?v=oVdV_kngy_0&feature=related

 

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Diaspora

October 16, 2008

To a significant number of the Ibo people, they saw these things as bad ideas and they did not take these new things in a positive way. However, being a reader with an objective point of view, these churches, schools, and etc. are positive influences. I’m going to talk about this in an objective point of view. The changes were positive because they gave the Ibo people a chance at a more civilized way of life. There are a lot of traditions that aren’t morally correct such as killing babies just because they are twins or physically abusing his wife or wives. The church would give the Ibo people the correct religion while the schools would educate kids and improve the potential for the future. Courts would give rational judgment while markets would give money more importance and flow of trading. Hospitals could care for the wounded better instead of old herbal remedies and military would protect the people better instead of using axes which is vulnerable to attack.

One example of Korean-American diaspora is hagwons. Korean kids want to improve at speaking English. These hagwons attract these kids and teach them the English language. Another example would be international schools. This is almost similar to hagwons except these schools, the students must be fluent in English. Here a group of English speaking Koreans come together and learn. A third example would be churches. There are English sermons in churches so people who struggle with Korean can praise God.

The novel is called Things Fall Apart because it shows the diaspora in a bad light. The white people apparently oppress the Ibo people. The Ibo people do not want interference with their traditions and cultures. Things Fall Apart means that things always change over time no matter what. There will always be new influences that could change for the better or the worse.

The Second Coming

October 3, 2008

          In the book Things Fall Apart, a part of William Butler Yeat’s poem, The Second Coming, is inscripted on the first page of the book. The words “things fall apart” is also a part of the poem. In the poem, things fall apart means that the world will fall one day and that God will end the religious wars. The Second Coming refers to the day when God shows hiimself and ends the spiritual war between God and the Devil. In the poem, Yeats refers to the dreadful day of Judgment Day, where a monster is created and is going to create havoc in this world.

          In the book Things Fall Apart, the white people are symbolically represented by the monster. In the book, the impression of the white people is a negative one, showing them abusing the people of Umuofia. However, being a Christian, I see it in a good way, converting many people of the wrong religion and teaching them the correct religion. This book shows there White people in a bad light and represent them as monsters.

Weird Food

September 11, 2008

          In this world, there are multitudes of foods that are strange to different people. People in Cambodia eat toasted spiders for snacks or even the notorious frog legs in France and they may sound weird and disgusting, but to the people that live there, it’s perfectly normal. My case is different. Although I am Korean, I am not used to some of the strange food in this country because I have a mindset of an American as a result of living in the United States for twelve years. Whenever I see the bbundaegi, which is a cooked brownish cocoon, my weak stomach shakes. When I first visited Korea, my parents tried to force me to eat the strange delicacy, but I refused. Another food that made me sick was the intestines when one gets along with soondae. Intestines? Are you kidding me? Although I’m a Korean, I’m still not used to the unusual food.

          The biggest sport figure in the world right now is a 22 year old swimmer. Michael Phelps broke the record for most gold medals in a single Olympics. The previous record was seven by Mark Spitz but now, that title belongs to Michael Phelps with eight gold medals. He also broke the record for most gold medals total. It’s amazing how such a young person can be so successful and be so dominating.

          What was so inspiring about his achievement was not by him. The 400 meter freestyle relay event he compteted in was one of the most amazing races I’ve seen. Phelps started off for Team USA but his time was 3rd from 4 times. Teammate Jason Lezak was the savior for Phelps. Lezak was the last swimmer for Team USA and he was a full length behind French swimmer Alain Bernard, who held the world record for fastest 100 meter freestyle, which was the length Lezak had to swim. Instead of giving up, Lezak had a adrenaline rush and caught up with Bernard in the end and won by a hair. The other U.S. swimmers were screaming in joy, especially Phelps. Although Phelps is the greatest swimmer right now, he owes Lezak big time.

Redeem Team

August 28, 2008

          At the Oympics at Greece in 2004, the USA basketball team was filled with stars from the NBA, such as Allen Iverson, LeBron James, and ten other superstars. However, despite all of that superpower, Team USA finished an embarrasing third. This year in Beijing, Team USA had a chip on their shoulders. Also, this team had better focus and less selfishness on the court. They all shared one goal: to win the gold. Despite filling the team with superstars once again, these particular group of players sacrificed scoring and played as a team. They put their egos aside and shared the ball with another. Kobe Bryant, the best player in the NBA, focused on defense instead of carrying the team. Nobody complained about playing time and had a team-first attitude. All this sacrifice resulted in Team USA dominating the playing field and winning the gold with ease and reclaiming the honor of having the best players in the world. What was amazing about this team was the attitude they had. Nobody thought a bunch of stars would give up so much. This showed a sense of unity and a love for their country nobody saw from previous USA teams. Thats why this team was the best USA team ever.

So Young, and So Gadgeted

August 28, 2008

          I think technology is a good asset to society. It makes life more easy and comforable. However, we shouldn’t fully embed our lives with technology. Our thoughts become limited and we can get lazy. Putting that in consideration, I think children should get their first cellphone once they reach the 7th Grade. This is when I got my first phone also. Giving a 6 year old child would not do any good for the child or the parent. The child would get obsessed with the phone and the parent would just be wasting money on something not necessary at that point in a child’s life. I think once a child reaches the 7th grade, they’ll be mature and teachable enough for a parent to make the kid understand that technology is not our whole life.

          I’ve heard of Jean Piaget in Psychology class previously this year. He was one of the most influential child development psychologists of his time. He watched his own children closely for his research. Piaget identified four stages of cognitive development. The first stage is from birth to the age of two. This is when parents should buy camcorders to record the first moments, instead of getting kids “gadgets”. The second stage is from the age of three to five. At this stage, kids tend to “pretend play” a lot. The third stage is from the age of six to eleven. At this time, parents should watch closely what the kids do on the internet and steer them toward good sites. The last stage is is from age twelve and on. At this stage, they should be allowed to experience technology on their own.

          The gadget I’m looking forward to getting at college is a new laptop. Also, this might not be considered a gadget but I’m really excited for my first car.

Fraud in China

August 18, 2008

          When I watched the Opening Ceremonies, I was simply amazed by the embellishing decorations and the perfection to which it was performed. That was before I read the article saying that the fireworks were fake and the girl that was shown on camera didn’t even sing. Now, my high praise for the opening ceremonies have diminished to “was any of the things we saw real”. I can understand the fireworks because they feared that the image couldn’t be captured on camera well enough. The footprints were so well depicted that I had no clue that the fireworks were fake. I’m not against it because there could be an error or it could be dangerous. However, using the two girls in two different roles was wrong. First of all, think of the mental impact it can have on the two girls. I know the little girls said that they are fine because they were able to contribute in the Opening Ceremonies, but what if they are not? Lin Miaoke, who has the better appearance, would probably ask herself, am I that bad at singing? On the other hand, Yang Peiyi, who had the better voice, would probably ask herself, am I that ugly? For chidren at their age, they need compliments, not criticism. Also, there isn’t a perfect person in this world. Why are they trying to represent China in the most perfect fashion? The perfect girl shown on the television was a fraud and the way they used both girls was wrong.

Disappointment

August 9, 2008

          Everybody was pumped up for the new Batman movie, “The Dark Knight”. I was too. However, after I watched the movie, I thought that the second movie was worse than the first one. All of my peers said that the second movie was better but after I watched it, I was left confused. Well first of all, I’m not saying that the Dark Knight was a bad movie. It was still a good movie but maybe with all the hype, I was expecting more than what I saw in the movie.

          I thought that the first movie was more fluid and better connected. In the second movie, I don’t get why they show Crane again if they aren’t even going to use him later on in the movie. I thought that was pointless. Also, I was confused when Gordon dies but comes back from the dead. Why does he pretend to die? He said that it was for the protection of his famiy but I don’t get how that protects his family. Also, I thought that they should have showed what happened to the Joker. Does he die from the police officers or does he get taken to jail? Those are some of the questions from the movie after I watched it.

Trip to Japan

August 8, 2008

          From August 5th to August 8th, I went on a trip to Japan with my family. My expectations were crowded streets and hectic traffic in the city of Tokyo but it was the complete opposite. We went to the quieter side of Japan to Hokkaido, which is an island in Japan. In Japan, we did a lot of moving around in buses, boats, trains; you name it. My head is in agony because of all the travel we did. However, after the trip, I think I wouldn’t mind living in Japan. The weather is nice, the water is clean, the people are respectful, and people drive politely and with manners.

          There are many differences from Japan and Korea. The driving lanes are the opposite. Korea and the United States drive on the right side of the road but Japan drives on the left side. It took a while to get used to this. The culture is really different too. Korea usually provides extra free services at restaurants such as refilling the kimchi bowl or providing coffee afterwards. In Japan, there is no such thing. You get what you get. I didn’t know this until I asked for more kimchi. When I did, the waitress looked at me strangely and I didn’t know what to make of that odd look. Then the tour guide had to tell me that there are no refills.

          Although that kimchi incident was embarrasing, I enjoyed the experience of a new culture. The trip to Japan was tiring yet memorable.