Writing Reviser.

Ms. Bessias introduced this Writing Reviser tool to us in class that should obviously be used to help with writing. The thing about this tool is that it is mostly focused on writing mechanics.

I entered my personal essay into the tool and waited for it to process my essay. It calculates grammatical things more than anything else. This tool is not to be used for feedback on your writing style, it’s only to be used for help with grammar. Also, there aren’t any comments. There are just sections with numbers. So, to compare Ms. Bessias’ comments and Writing Reviser’s is kind of unnecessary, because they critique two different things. Although Ms. Bessias does comment on grammar, it’s not her main focus, whereas Writing Reviser is meant to focus on grammar.

I would say it’s a good tool to use if you’re concerned about grammar in a piece, but not one if you’re looking for things to change in it that aren’t grammatical. It definitely gives you the lowdown on your grammar errors!

Not Much To Say.

Honestly, I have no idea what to talk about. There aren’t many exciting things going on right now, except for like, Osama bin Laden dying…that’s kind of a big deal I guess…

I’m surprised that I haven’t caught a bad case of Spring Fever this year. Instead of losing all motivation, I actually want to finish my junior year strong.

I’m at the point now where I’m rambling. I should probably stop.

Bin Laden Pictures.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/05/04/osama-bin-laden-pictures_n_857568.html

It’s time for me to be blunt.

Members of the Tea Party make me angry.

According to the Huffington Post, the University of California (at all branches) is beginning to accept more out-of-state students. Why? Because they need more money.

Out-of-state tuition to attend the University of California is $35,000 per year, which, according to the Huffington Post, is three times what California residents pay. As I read on, I saw that other states such as Arizona, Texas, and Washington are doing this as well. Two of my top college choices, including my first choice, are in Texas. Texas A&M University (my first choice) is $36,000 per year. What I want to know is whether this is good or bad for someone like me who wants to go to their state for college. Yes, my chances of getting into those colleges are better. But the chances of me getting the financial aid I need to go there are probably slimmer than they already were.

I don’t know the logistics of this yet, but the idea of me not going where I want to go just because I’d have to pay full tuition scares me. The colleges I want to go to are all public or state colleges, and I know my family can’t afford out-of-state tuition. I really hope this issue doesn’t completely affect where I go to college, because I can tell you right now, Texas A&M is pretty hard to beat as far as majors, programs, and academics are concerned (for me).

The End of an Era?

Late last night, I was talking to my boyfriend, Zach, and he asked me if I’d been watching the news at all, which I hadn’t because I fell asleep for a little while. I asked him what was going on, and he casually responded with, “Osama bin Laden was killed.” My response was, “WHAT!”; I didn’t know what to say or how to react. This man had been the center of the American government’s attention for most of the time I’ve been in grade school. I was in second grade when 9/11 occurred almost ten years ago, and since then, he’s been a target of the American military. So, of course, his death is an important event in my life.

However, I’m quite skeptical/in denial about all of this. I know that President Obama has been keeping track of bin Laden’s whereabouts since he took office, but I can’t help but wonder, “What if?” I’m a huge supporter of my President and I know he is a good enough leader to do something like this, but I worry that in the next few months, we will discover that this “victory” isn’t real. This would not be good for President Obama, considering he is running for reelection in 2012.¬†Although they took DNA tests to make sure it was him, I just hope that it really is real. I was very impressed by Obama’s tactics and execution of his plan, and the way he kept his promise to the American people. For those who don’t remember, he did say during his campaign that he would find Osama bin Laden and kill him. His meticulousness in this situation will help him rather than hurt him. Hopefully.

Americans are saying that this will end the War on Terror era, but I don’t think it will. I think this event is making America more vulnerable and more prone to attacks because of Al-Qaeda members wanting to avenge his death. President Obama, his cabinet, and the American people need to be ready for anything at this point. There are Al-Qaeda networks all over the world, and we need to watch out for any new plans of attacks against the United States. However, I’m not too concerned about Obama’s readiness. I’m sure he understands the repercussions of executing an operation like this. But, as a citizen who is not involved and knows nothing about what’s going on behind the scenes, all I can say is, we shall see.

Differences In Writing Styles

Today, I have read three different blogs recommended by classmates of mine: Stuff White People Like (http://stuffwhitepeoplelike.com), Weird Asia News (http://www.weirdasianews.com), and PostSecret (http://www.postsecret.com). Each blog definitely has a different writing style from the next.

Stuff White People Like is a sarcastically funny blog. It is written by a white guy, most likely in his twenties, and he writes sarcastic posts about things most white Americans like. His site contains information about his book and a master list of all the “white” things he’s blogged about. What I like the most about the writing is that he writes in a way that white people can laugh at themselves and not get offended. Most (and if not all) of his ideas about stuff white people like are so accurate that a white person can look at it and say, “Dude, that’s so true” instead of saying “Ugh, this guy is just rude.”

Next is Weird Asia News. The layout and writing style on this site are both similar to the Huffington Post, because there are ads everywhere and the posts have more of an article-type format. This format makes the content and post seem more formal than it actually is. Truly, this site is a complete joke, which is what I enjoy about it. What makes the joke even funnier is that it is written so formally and seriously.

PostSecret is different from these two blogs. There is little to no writing and instead is an art project containing words and phrases. Each postcard is written by a different person, so the sentences and sentence structures are different. Some are funny, some are sad. What I like about this blog is that it contains a wide range of emotion. I know each time I’ve read it, I’ve been touched in some way by someone’s secret.

If you read each blog yourself, you’ll notice how different the layouts and writing styles are. It’s hard to compare one to the other, because each blog’s creative purpose is different.

The Huffington Post

As someone who is interested in current events and news, I read the Huffington Post everyday. Although this blog has a slight liberal bias, it’s still a good news blog that sticks to the facts. Here’s the link to the site in case any of you want to look around the site a bit:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/

I find this blog reliable enough to look at when I want to know what’s going on. Another thing I like about this blog is they have different posts on the side that are either related to the one you’re looking at or were posted that same day. I hope you take a minute or two to look at it.

International Day.

Last Wednesday was International Day at school. I’ve always looked forward to International Day because of my interest in other cultures and such. The only thing that disappointed me this year is that we didn’t have classes like we did my freshman year. However, the choice to watch a movie about education in other countries ended up being quite fascinating.

I’ve always been interested in learning more about the education systems in other countries, but I unfortunately have never educated myself. This movie depicted what education is like in Afghanistan, Benin, Japan, Romania, India, Kenya, and Brazil. As a girl, it was upsetting to me that these education systems do not wish to educate girls. Girls deserve to be educated just as much as boys do. However, this is a cultural difference which I understand but don’t completely like. I also thought the differences between each country were interesting because each has different customs and views on education. The differences between Shugufa’s family and education versus Neeraj’s were especially stunning to me and stood out the most. Shugufa’s parents wanted her to be educated as much as she possibly could, while Neeraj’s parents didn’t care whether she was educated or not.

I could write all day about how fascinating International Day was for me this year. Unlike my peers, the food wasn’t my most favorite part of the day. I’m glad that I actually got something out of International Day, because that was what I intended to do.