Thursday, January 27, 2011

Steinbeck Style Episode Opening

Please write the opening to a scene or episode in the style of John Steinbeck. The setting for this piece is going to be your very own bedroom. Be sure to be as descriptive as possible (show, don't tell), and concentrate on reflecting the overall tone and mood of the upcoming scene through your description of the setting. 

           At the end what feels like the longest hallway after a tiring day, but in reality it is as short as daisy dukes. The second door on the right, lies a hexagonal room the color of the hot red rocks of Arizona. Chilled by the hardwood floor a carpet stretches across the biggest bedroom on the top level attempting to keep the warmth during the cold San Francisco nights. The first thing you see when you walk in is a life size picture of Audrey Hepburn marking a dead end and forcing any incomer to take sharp left.  On the eastern most wall lies a bulletin board with pinned up and hanging pictures of memories and unforgettable moments, alongside a forgotten calendar stuck in June of last year. 
  Though the room is not marked by much furniture it is finished with small yet important details that gives the room the ostentatious appeal intended. Gliding in the air are two fairies high enough to get the illusion of them floating above a young girls head, yet low enough for anyone else to accidently bump the fairies sending them spiraling in the air gracefully. 
         The northern wall is split into three groups each side a home to a window overlooking the untended garden. Through the transparent glass you can see the glaze of a soft layer of mist settling on the other side of the glass barrier during the foggy damp city days. On looking past the glass one catches a quick taste of childhood play while looking at the forgotten mini basketball hoop and bouncy ball once constantly used for entertainment. This view of the garden is a perfect spot  for day dreaming, reminiscing, and pondering about the past, the future and present; it is always open yet sparsely used due to lack of downtime.
  To the western wall dwells two twin size beds. Both never made and piled high with blankets to stay warm during the night. The bed to the right's decoration pillows are neatly set to the right of the bed with one overused old pillow on top of the mattress. The bed to the left has a luggage next to it, a symbol of the current seventeen year-old foreign exchange student from Sweden who the room is shared with. Separating the bed is a quaint nightstand.  Resting on the wooden stand is my grandmothers old hand crafted golden box holding trinkets of sentimental value. 
  The eastern wall is even by glance the most used part of the room.  With a large dresser drawer, and a closet full of clothes it still seems as if there is not enough space for her clothing. The closet is stacked with dresses, skirts, and heels. It is the most treasured, and neatest part of the room. Hanging from the door is the full outfit intended for the next day, of course subject to change but always picked with great care. On top of the dresser drawer is a stack of books, and two earring hangers holding a vast collection of earrings picked up through the years. A glass vase of colorful tissue flowers resides to the left showing a spark of creativity and adding an extra dash of color. A picture of a former class of 28 girls in blue skirts, white button down tops, and a navy blue blazers standing with bouquets of red roses sits prominently on the stand as a constant reminder of the past. The room was still and motionless the only sense of movement are the swaying trees outside.
         The door swung open and a boy around the age of 13 came barreling in. His face wide with a smile was suddenly being transformed into a look of shock to finding the room empty. He takes a seat and puts down the basketball in his hand and starts rethinking his plans for the day...

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Of Mice & Men -- Chapter Five Prompt

In the novella Of Mice and Men, John Steinbeck reveals through the characterization of Curley’s Wife that women are left out of the American dream. Curley’s Wife is seen as a “tramp”. The men always talk about her negatively but we barely get to hear from her until the end of the story. Time and time again the men tell Curley to keep his wife away from them. Though she has no name she is a significant character in the novella because she represents how women were treated. “ I get lonely, You can talk to people, but I can’t talk to nobody but Curley.” Curley’s wife just needs a person to talk to. She feels confined in her life, and wants to leave the ranch. Just as Crook’s feel isolated from others she feels the same way. Steinbeck does not portray her as an evil person in this story rather as a victim of a perception of women that became their reality. Curley’s wife has dreams of going to Hollywood and being a star, although the American dream was the goal everyone was working towards, it was practically impossible for her. Curley's Wife symbolizes every girl in America at the time. With a life of true isolation she was not even given an opportunity to attempt to achieve her dreams; she is pushed into being a cold, harsh women. "Sure I gotta husban'. You all seen him. Swell guy, ain't he? Spends all his time sayin' what he's gonna do to guys he don't like, and he don't like nobody." This shows that she is not satisfied with just being Curley's wife, she wants to form her own identity. The absence of her name shows she has not true identity. Curley's wife did not deserve to die when she was the victim of such a confined life. She was misunderstood and portrayed as a “tramp”, when the only other women alive in the book were the ones working at the whorehouse and they were viewed as nice ladies. Those girls had more freedom than her because they were not considered property of one man. Through the Characterization of Curley's Wife Steinbeck illustrates how women in the 1930’s were left out of the American dream.