failing like never before


Infinite Green Hope

Hmmm... I found another essay I wrote on The Great Gatsby. I think this is the "second edition" of the previous one that I wrote.

Jay Gatsby, of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, epitomizes one of the central themes of the novel; the prospect of infinite hope and its death. Hope is the cornerstone of the American Dream, and it has become corrupted by foul, immoral deeds. Men who made a fortune in industries, bootlegging, and in the stock market, during the 20s jazz era quickly turned to live the flamboyant, decadent lifestyle they so desired. Fitzgerald describes the downfall of hope and the American Dream by emphasizing the immoral nature of Gatsby and the rich so that future generations might be warned of the dreadful end that arises from corrupted dreams.

It is not merely the dream itself that is tainted, but also the process in which the goal was attained, as can be seen through Gatsby’s rise to wealth. He cared not for the path he took, for his goal was merely to be rich, so that Daisy would marry him. Because of this, Gatsby took to bootlegging and other criminal affairs, “his previously varied aspirations…are sacrificed for…single-minded obsession with Daisy's green light at the end of her dock” (Theme Analysis). The green light represented to Gatsby, the “orgastic future” (Fitzgerald 180), where everything was good. In his search for the past in the future, Gatsby corrupted his dream and his hopes with subtle crimes and bootlegging, and the green light became merely a light as he died.


The Dream of Gatsby

I figure since I'm going through my old stuff, I might as well post some of old essays from high school. So here's another essay, on The Great Gatsby, with "works cited" at the end. (And yes, this is one is also pretty bad, as essays go.)

You can find my second and final draft (read: better draft) here.

One of the major themes of F. Scott Fitzgerald's novel, The Great Gatsby, is the death of honest, hard work. Certainly, this theme could be described as the death of the American Dream, but Fitzgerald's novel has now extended far beyond the borders of America to encompass the majority of the world, and it would be better to refer to the motif in a more worldly manner. The theme is seen more clearly through the carefree lifestyle of Tom and Daisy Buchanan and the extravagant mannerisms of Jay Gatsby, who are deeply contrasted by the frugal lifestyles of Nick Carraway and George Wilson. Through his characterization of the Buchanans, Nick, Gatsby, and Wilson, Fitzgerald attempts to display the manner in which humanity has come to value the possession of money rather then the process of obtaining it, so that future generations might gain a reprise from the despondent lifestyle similar to the one Fitzgerald lived.

Sparknotes mentions in "Themes, Motifs & Symbols," that "the unrestrained desire for money and pleasure surpassed more noble goals" during the decadent 1920s. Jay Gatsby sought only the pleasure that he could obtain through money, so he ignored the nobility of honest work, and instead turned to a far more profitable line of employment: bootlegging. Gatsby describes Daisy Buchanan's voice as being "full of money" (Fitzgerald 120), which allows us to see more fully into the nature of Gatsby, for Gatsby does not love Daisy for her wit and charm, but rather for the wealth that she epitomizes. His goal is to simply be on top with a mound of money and the “golden girl” alongside him. Whether he attains this goal through wooing her, or by buying her attention with his ill gained money, makes no difference to Gatsby. Novel Analysis says in "Character Profiles," that Gatsby has created his own "personal version of the American Dream." Gatsby's dream is a world where his money can bring the world to bow at his feet, and make the "golden girl" become his bride. In his perverted dream, there are no noble pathways to a happy ending; there is only a lonely beginning, and a glorious end.


A Poor Villanelle

This is a rather poorly Villanelle which I wrote sometime in high school. I have no idea what I was writing about, but anyhoo, here it is for the world to ridicule.

Good Friend
Good friend, how does your mother fare of late?
They say you tend to her every day, yet
How does your honor of her currently rate?
Today you show her deference, yet hate
Was once the only thing that she would get.
Good friend, how does your mother fare of late?
Methinks you wish that she were dead, a fate
So good, your daily chores all well and met.
How does your honor of her currently rate?
Your livestock lives quite a similar fate,
No love in life, but fulfillment in death.
Good friend, how does your mother fare of late?
Your heart and actions are in great debate,
No love for her I see you have to whet.
How does your honor of her currently rate?
Too late you’ve shown her far too much hate,
She’s past gone loving you, and you of her .
Good friend, how does your mother fare of late?
How does your honor of her currently rate?


Hot Hot Preshot, Again

Way back in May of this year, I wrote an article complaining about how hot my computer was running. Well now its summer and the air is all smoggy and lovely, so the outside temperature is sitting at a sultry 100+ degrees Fahrenheit. Right now, I'm running Pidgin and Firefox 3 with five tabs and my CPU is at 61 degrees Celsius and my fans are spinning full out. Thanks to Intel's SpeedStep technology (which throttles the CPU's clock speed when the temperature gets too high, in order to prevent the CPU from igniting) my computer is now running at a disgustingly slow speed.

And thats about all I have to say.

And let me just say that this was a disgustingly short post.


Daily Log – July 4 2008

So yes, I did not post a daily log for yesterday, and I don't plan on it because well, I guess I'm far too lazy.

  • Worked on the car. Replaced hoses, cables, and spark plugs, which took most of the day.
  • Bought some new running shoes, very nice and light.
  • Read
  • Studied some QT

To all you Americans, happy 4th of July! May you celebrate your independence from the British by indulging in special 4th of July sales.

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Javascript Performance

I've noticed that Javascript runs amazingly slowly in Firefox 3 on my computer. I'm running Debian Lenny with an i686 kernel and I have the i686 version of FF3 downloaded straight from the firefox website. Under Opera, Konqueror, and Epiphany, on my computer, Javascript effects like Lokesh Dhakar's Lightbox, (which I'm using on my blog to display image) tend to be a little sluggish, but in Firefox 3, performance is horrendous. In Lightbox, when you click an image the entire page darkens, which normally takes next to no time, even on my Mom's old Celeron loaded down with tons of malware. But in FF3 on my computer, it takes a noticeable amount of time for Lightbox to darken the screen, at least a second or two. I tried running other Javascript intensive websites, built with various libraries including JQuery, Prototype, and Mootools, but the results were the same. Javascript performance continued to be absymal. Indeed, in some cases I clicked an image, went to the bathroom, came back and found my computer was still trying the zoom the image out.

I haven't conducted any kind of indepth, exhaustive testing of FF3's Javascript performance, but from cursory usage, I have determined that its pretty bad. Aside from complaining, I have no idea what else to do.


Daily Log – 2 July 2008

A quick summary of today’s highlights in my life.

  • Worked on learning QT
  • Took a four hour nap, and I still feel really tired. Unfortunately, I seem to be unable to sleep long for a long stretch of time at nighttime.
  • Fixed the broken toilet. And oh boy was that fun!
  • Fixed my bike's flat tire with the little sticker thingies I bought today. Either the little sticker thingies didn't work or else I have another hole in my tire because its flat again.

The time is now 9pm, I think I'll go to sleep in another hour or so.

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Daily Log – 1 July 2008

A quick summary of today’s highlights in my life.

  • Read
  • Fixed and replaced, along with my Dad, some wiring stuff that got destroyed when my mom did something with her hair dryer
  • Read some more, exciting, I know

And yes, I'm a day late on this daily log. Trying to catch up. waaah

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