Posted by Tim Xue
Please see attached!
Posted by: Alexandra McKnight
Let’s start with the facts: You don’t care about the fact. You don’t care about what I do for fun or how my friends would describe me. How do I organize my time and assignments, you ask. Really? I know, we know, you know that you don’t care. So why don’t we stop pretending.
You’re eyes are going to scan these words looking for something, some kind of insight into who I am, what I’m all about, what my deepest fears are, how I overcome obstacles, whether I cry at night when I’m alone, if I pick my nose when no one is looking, what I like to eat on Saturday nights but here’s the thing: You don’t care about any of that and you won’t find it here. I refuse to write for you amusement. I despise your smartass prompt that has the nerve to ask me for personal information. Woman/man/to whom it may concern, who are YOU? Why don’t we start there and see where it leads us. Maybe then I can let you in on me. (Sn: No matter what that probably won’t happen)
Fact: You think you’re entitled to know about me. Well, my good sense and a little birdie told me that you actually are not privy to my life secrets. If you want to know about someone’s life, read a memoir. Fact: a memoir is an autobiography or a written account of one’s memory of certain events or people. This is not a memoir. I will never write a memoir, at least not for the likes of you to read…whoever you are. This isn’t intended to be mean or snobbish but words are important, private. My words about my life belong to me and when I choose to share them I would like to know upon whose ears they are falling on. Who is gaining my personal, intimate memories? Who might dismiss my words?
Speaking of words, I am currently at 328. I must continue to blab on for another 70 or so words. This is for class. I must continue for 50 or so words because the required range is 400-500. This writing is not for you woman/man/to whom it may concern. It is for my R9 assignment, which counts towards my grade. So please, make no mistake because this here 400 word post about my feelings towards you is not for you.
Posted by: Rachel Revelle
If I am going to write the truth about myself in a compelling way I should probably not talk extensively about the time I spend asleep. But I could. Haven’t you ever wanted to film yourself for an entire night and see what movements or babbles you make unconsciously? A description of this tape would be more realistic information, and perhaps humorous revelation—the contorted position of a European model on the beach, or the ghastly open-mouthed snore, whichever it may be—than merely relating for the appropriate time periods: “I am sleeping.” Still not particularly compelling though. What I would want to include is the considerable material I collect about myself during my time asleep.
I am a vivid dreamer, and I believe they represent some form of truth. They at least become a part of my near-daily discourse, when I relate my dreams to friends and family. But should I or anyone else rely on them? The uncanny fact is that they are so constantly relevant.
They certainly remind me of characteristics both about myself, and the world in which I live. My grandmother is always a good cook, and my dreams often propel me towards a family dinner table. The prevalence of small children must cater to my maternal instinct that friends say is already in overdrive. The pregnancy dreams, however, seem a little too ambitious. I will be more cautious in how to prepare both my parents and my boyfriend for meeting each other after a quite amusing trial run in a recent dream.
Sometimes I think I take care of certain potential realities in my dreams, and then do not have to concern myself with them in the conscious world. Just last week I had the equivalent of what I imagine to be the most intense drug-induced euphoria through the experience of transforming into a swimming dolphin in my dream. Glad I got that covered, thanks.
Now I will go to sleep thinking of the meaning of truth, the deception of dreams, and how closely they can align. I hope I will have something salient to relate in the morning…
It is morning. I dreamt as usual and am scrambling to put the vanishing thoughts to paper. I wondered how last night’s writing session would affect my few precious hours of sleep, and I did, in fact, dream about this experience of writing. I related my topic to several classmates (sorry, none of you reading my R9 post specifically visualized), and they commented that that must be in the spirit of Monson. It was nice to have that reassurance that I know what the heck I’m doing. Sometimes, though, I dream that I have finished that paper I am supposed to get up early to write—seriously, sit there typing vague sentences in my subconscious—and hence oversleep. I guess I should not rely on those seeming realities.
Oh yeah, I also had a repeat encounter with the International President of my sorority, who I happened to meet yesterday at a presentation. In some sort of after the fact apprehension about meeting this dignitary, I came up with the scenario that she was going to be visiting my chapter on April 20, and I was frantically warning sisters not to be high when they met her. This, I certainly hope, does not become reality…
Well this has been introspectively fun, but if I keep on narrating my dreams, in what crazy reality will I find myself?
by Lawson Kurtz
Stop. Scroll down, browse back, shut down your computer, or just get up and walk away. Don’t read this essay. I’m not just issuing this advice as a reverse psychological tactic to lure you in. I actually mean stop.
If you’re stubborn enough to continue on to this next paragraph, you are not only wasting your precious time, but you’re also subjecting yourself to plain old bad writing. This essay is simply isn’t meant for human consumption. It lacks any semblance of meaning or purpose. It exists only to satisfy the minimum requirements for this week’s English 117AS writing assignment.
Don’t get me wrong; I have nothing against you. I don’t not want to tell you anything. I have no objections to flowing prose and deep insights. On another occasion, I’d be happy to share with you meaningful ideas and well-constructed arguments, but right now, at this moment, I’m too busy. I’m riding the caffeine wave to this assignment’s completion: the 500 word mark. Let’s face it; we both have busy lives. Do you really have time to read the insignificant ramblings of college student who lacks any significant life experience? (If your answer is yes, I would gladly entertain the possibility of swapping places with you.)
There is a possibility—if you are still reading this—that you are thirsty for knowledge, but lacking the discriminatory faculties necessary to distinguish truly valuable works from ones such as this. In an altruistic attempt to help you find greener pastures, as it were, and/or in a somewhat selfish attempt to dispose of the entirety of this piece’s readership before the as yet unwritten—but unavoidably terrible—ending, I’ll suggest some better alternatives. Furthermore, as you are on a computer, and are therefore only one click away from an endless bounty of quality publications, I will provide you with hyperlinks to my suggestions to facilitate the ease of your departure.
You might, for instance, consider spending your time reading one of the most important pieces of literature ever written: Ulysses by James Joyce.
Not the literary type? How about exploring the archives of one of the world’s most prestigious academic journals, Nature. If you’re looking for knowledge, this is where it is born.
Or maybe you are more in the mood for lighter reading.
I bet you’re hungry. Do you know what you’re making for dinner tonight?
Is your home in imminent danger?
Is reading this post making you go BLIND!?
Listen, I’m trying everything here. You know what? At this point maybe you should just stay and finish this. You’re committed. You can’t get those two minutes back. Is it better to cut your losses now, or to continue on to read the final 33 words? The answer, like this essay, doesn’t matter.
For the record, any spelling or grammar mistakes that you may find were intentionally inserted for there stylistic effect.
This sentence makes 499 words.
To accompany the visit of Dave Eggers next Wednesday, I’d like us to read and think about some pieces of writing that, like much of his work, comment on the process of their own making. That’s an awkward phrase—”the process of their own making”—but I think you’ll get what I’m driving at when you read the following piece by Eggers:
- Front pages. A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius. New York: Vintage, 2001 (posted in Reserves);
Along with three essays from Ander Monson’s Vanishing Point:
- “Voir Dire” (pp. 3-23),
- “The Essay Vanishes” (pp. 41-49); and
- “Solipsism” (pp. 91-103).
In response, I’d like you to write a very brief piece (perhaps 400 or 500 words) in the spirit of Eggers and/or Monson. Deciding what writing “in the spirit of” those two authors is part of the challenge—and, I hope, interest—of this assignment.
If you can format your response as conventional post to this website, do so. If your document requires more complex formatting, please attach it to your post as a docx or pdf file (as you did with Project One). In either case, use R9 as the category for your post.
Deadline: Wed, 11/10, 4:00 PM