Friday, October 30, 2015

Week 10 Extra Reading Diary: Persian Tales

Persian Tales

The Hemp-Smoker's Dream: This is about a man who gets high then has a crazy dream. I am very glad this was dream because it was a very confusing read. This story reminded me of a monologue someone did in my high school. It was about a dream someone had were the introduced party members who all had very similar three letter names. The names in this story would be easier to read if the last names were different.

The Story of the Wolf-Bride: This story is interesting because it says that fate is predetermined and it can't be changed. I like that the bride randomly turns into a wolf and eats the guy. I was left wondering if she had turned into a wolf before or if it was like a one time thing. I also would want to know what triggered that if she had always turned into a wolf. And if she knew what made her turn into a wolf why didn't she take precautions so she didn't kill her husband?

Tortoise bowl on the back of the Fox: I like this story because it shows the tortoise being clever again. All of the stories I have read about turtles and tortoises have portrayed them as very intelligent. I like how the tortoise stood up for his stuff because the fox did absolutely nothing. I hate people who try to claim your work as their own.

(Tortoise planting seed)

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Week 10 Storytelling: The Spirit of the Sea

Once upon a time, there was a princess who lived in a palace with her father, the king. She found herself daydreaming constantly about an adventurous life outside of the palace. You see, the princess had always been inside the palace walls. Her father was going out of the palace on business the next week. She made the decision to sneak out and wander the forest.

The day was finally here. She was ready to act on her plan to sneak out. She walked passed the guards at the back door and told them she wanted to spend a day alone in the garden so they should not disturb her. Once she had made her way into the garden, she went straight for the tall tree in the back corner that grew over the castle wall. She climbed to the very top of it. Once there, she slid off the branch and onto the wall. From here, she reached into her satchel and withdrew a long rope made of sheets she had tied together. She tied it around a decorative gargoyle on the castle wall and then propelled herself down. When her feet touched the ground of the forest below, she celebrated! She had done it! She had made it out of the palace!!!

The princess began to explore the forest. She wandered past rivers and waterfalls. She saw wonders that she had only read about in books. She kept going deeper and deeper into the woods until it began to get dark. She realized it was time to head back. However, when she tried to make her way back to the palace she was lost. She tried to retrace her steps, but she kept ending up back were she began to retrace her steps. The princess began to cry. In the distance, a handsome young man heard her crying. He wondered up to her and introduced himself as a handsome prince. He told her that he would take her back to her palace if she would promise him her hand in marriage when the time came. The princess said she would and they began their trek back to her palace.

They had been walking for some time when the princess suddenly realized they had been walking much longer than they should have to get to her palace. She began to fear that this handsome prince was not as nice as she originally thought. She was right. They came to the end of the woods and the prince grabbed the princess by her arm and pulled her into is kingdom. You see, he was the prince of the rival kingdom and he had successfully kidnapped the princess.

The prince made the princess work hard and did not treat her well. She wanted to go home very badly. She regretted her decision to leave her palace tremendously, but no amount of regret could change what had happened. One day, she went down to the river to get water for the prince and his friends. She saw a man in a canoe and begged him to help her. The man came ashore and offered to take the princess away from their. She agreed.

This man was not just any mere mortal, he was the spirit of the sea. He took the princess to his palace in the sky and treated her very well. She was very happy with him, but she still missed her home. She begged him to allow her to take their son back to her kingdom were he would be trained as a great warrior. He knew this is what would make her the happiest so he said he would let her go, on one condition...she had to make him a blanket of how he courted her and their life together. She did. And this is the story of the first blanket.

(Chilkat Blanket)

Author's note: The story I retold was that of The Origin of the Chilkat Blanket. This story is of the daughter of a chief who is gathering with the women of her tribe when she is asked for her hand in marriage by a member of the Bear tribe. She becomes very unhappy there and the people won't let her leave. The Spirit of the Sea rescues her and takes her away from there. He treats her well, but she still misses her home. He agrees to let her take her son  and go back to her kingdom as long as she makes him a blanket. This is the original Chilkat blanket. 

Monday, October 26, 2015

Week 10 Reading Diary B: Alaskan Legends

Alaskan Legends

Origin of the Chilkat Blanket: This story explains why people aimed between the eyes to kill bears. I liked this story because there was no happy ever after for everyone on it. I also like how the sea god was kind to the woman and let her go home to her people. This would be another good story to tell like I did Cupid and Psyche.

The First Woman: I like how this story explains why women from different areas have different skills. It is interesting to me how all of these stories explain the world around them. I like how this story is ended with "it is still this way today so its true".

The Boy in the Moon: I like how this story explains the origin of the moon and the sun. It is interesting how the people say that the moon was a boy and the girl is the sun. This is consistent with other Native American stories and one of the Japan mythology stories I read. It is so sad that they say it is a boy who is in love with a girl that can never get to her.

(Moon of Anchorage Alaska)

Week 10: Reading Diary A: Alaskan Legends

Alaskan Legends

The Flood: This story is about how one Raven got angry at the people and caused a great flood that caused the people to die of starvation. This is another story that has biblical sounding origins. These stories that are all similar to each other make you really wonder if something like a great flood did happen because these people had to come up with these stories somewhere.

The Origin of the Tides: This story is used to explain a natural phenomenon. A lot of stories from different tribes do this. This one explains high and low tide. It is interesting to hear how they explain things when we have science now that teaches us it is something else. They didn't have that back then so they just think it is some weird thing like men putting the lid on and taking it off to create high and low tide. We know it is just the moon and it's gravitational pull.

Raven's Feast: This is a story about how the Raven wanted to have a great feast and asked for the Groundhog's for help with food. The Groundhogs were said to be able to know when the winter was over and spring was coming. I think this is cool because it explains why Groundhogs are used to decide when spring is coming.

(Nass River)

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Extra Reading Diary Post Week 9: Eskimo Folk Tales

Eskimo Folk Tales

The Coming of Men, a Long, Long While Ago: I really enjoy hearing about how other culture's view the world being born so to speak. I think it is so interesting to see the similarities between Christian views and other religions. The Native American units have really been one of my favorites to see this. In this one, it retells some of the Bible's stories only with their own take on it. They talk about how man, children, women, and dogs were made. They even address a big flood that wiped out most of man kind.

Nuk├║nguasik, who escaped from the Tupilak: And then there are some Native American stories that just don't make a lot of sense. This is one of them. I feel like this story really didn't have a point. It talks about the many brothers and one of them trying to make something to kill one of the others. Then the one who is supposed to be killed, kills the one trying to kill him and leaves the monster made to kill him on the island with him. 

The Giant Dog: So this story is kind of crazy, but it does have a point. I like that the giant dog is made out to be a villain then is told that he is not that bad at all because the island dwellers are not nice themselves. I really enjoy how the very end rhymes. I also enjoy how the dog is just really cool and handles those three dogs that try to attack him.  

(Eskimo Girl)

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Week 9: Reading Diary B: Myth's of the Cherokee

Myth's of the Cherokee


The Terrapin's escape from the wolves: This story reminds me a lot of the Jataka tale. I liked it because the turtle is clever and gets out of dying again because he knows how to play people. I find it really funny that this turtle used wolf ears as spoons to like frighten people!

The Crane and the Hummingbird: The crane and the hummingbird both love the same woman. She prefers the hummingbird...but do you blame her? They are so cute and colorful! I relate to her because I also love hummingbirds and do not blame her one bit for staying single!!!

The Owl gets Married: This story is very interesting. I like how the owl takes human form and then grieves himself out of having it. It is very supernatural in nature. It is weird how the owl was a terrible hunter though because I have always thought of owls as being great hunters.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Week 9: Reading Diary A: Myth's of the Cherokee

Myth's of the Cherokee
(the moon)

The Moon and the Thunders: There are a lot of stories compiled into this one. It is very interesting to observe the different style the Cherokee's use to tell stories. They make it one big compilation of stories that are similar to each other. All of these stories have a common theme that is the moon and the sun. The last one talks about thunder though. I think it is included because they talk about the sky in it.

The Deluge: Oh! This story is like the Cherokee version of Noah's Arc! These stories are all straight and to the point. I really like that the man's dog is the one that told him to build a raft. Did the dog ever get thrown into the water?

The Rabbit Goes Duck Hunting: This is the first of the rabbit stories. This rabbit is so clever and yet he is really creepy. I like how they talk about the rabbit getting out of their by convincing the human's to stand back. I also like how the rabbit is clever and mischievous. It reminds me of bugs bunny!

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Cheezburger Tech Tip


Reading Plan

Week 9: Myths of the Cherokee
Week 10: Alaskan Legends
Week 11: Alice in Wonderland
Week 12: Faerie Queen- Britomart
Week 13: Dante's Inferno
Week 14: The Heptameron of Margaret, Queen of Navarre

(Get Lost in a Book Tonight)

Reflections: Looking Forward

Looking forward, I would like to do all of my weekend assignments early on Friday to let me get a head start on the next weeks assignments. This would take a lot of stress off of me during the week. I would also like to do more of the extra credit assignments. These assignments seem fun and useful, but I do not leave myself enough time to work on them during the week. This would help me get my points in early so I can finish the class early or at least make up the points that I have failed to do on time. I would also like to try a few different writing styles for my stories. I really like to explore with different techniques and styles and try to add my own flair to them. I really enjoy that this class lets me express my creativity in a way that the other rigidly structured courses I am in don't. I want to do the extra credit where I make my own memes because that seems so cool and I have always wanted to do that. So most of all, looking forward, I want to make more time for this class and since I am wrapping up one of my other online classes, I think I will be able to do that.

(Finish Strong: flickr)

Monday, October 12, 2015

Reflections: Looking Back

Looking back I have developed many new skills from this class. My storytelling has gotten better and I have picked up new styles. I also have learned how to include images with a link in my blog.

My Favorite Stories: My favorite stories are pretty much the ones I included in my portfolio. I really enjoyed Cupid and Psyche and the Jataka tale of the Mighty King and the Turtle. I think it really shows that I enjoyed them because those stories I wrote are heads and tails better than the others. I put more time and effort into the ones I enjoy because then they are easier to write about. There are a few other stories that I am excited to spruce up and share in my portfolio. One of those is from Arabian Nights. I chose to tell a story about a story that wasn't included in the original story. What I love about that is I had complete creative freedom to tell whatever I wanted. What I have learned from my reading habits is that I like the ones that are fun and exciting. I really like them not to be drug out. I like my stories to the point. It makes it easier for me to read them to my roommate while she is doing homework.

Location: The place I like to do my homework for this class is at my desk in my room. There are few distractions and the ambiance from the lower lighting makes me feel like Jo from Little Women writing from candle light at night in her room. That is one of my favorite books. I like the quietness of the night and reading the stories and writing them at that time really helps me wind down in the evening so I can fall asleep faster.

(Jo from Little Women writing at her desk)

Friday, October 9, 2015

Extra Reading Diary Week 7: Canterbury Tales

Canterbury Tales

The Prioress's Tale: This story is about Little Hugh. It really was kind of creepy to read. I do not remember this story from when we read some of it in high school so I imagine we didn't read it because I would have definitely remembered this one. I don't really like how it painted one group of people out to be bad people, but I am sure that is just because at the time it was written it was okay. It is also really scary how that boy was singing with his throat slit and when they removed the grain from his tongue he just died.

Nun's Priest's Tale: Her tale is of the about a rooster who has a beautiful singing voice. He has seven hen wives. He has a dream that a fox gets him and it scares him. His favorite wife calls him a coward and tells him to go back to bed. He realizes that his dream is going to come true when a fox tricks him and snatches him up. The moral of this story is be wary of your dreams.

The Canon Yeoman's Tale: In this tale, a priest loans money to a poor beggar who turns out to be a con artist. He comes back to pay back the money on time, but ends up scamming the priest out of more money. He claims to be able to turn things into silver. This is kind of reminds me of the old story where the miller's daughter has to spin straw into gold. Only the canon pulls a couple over on the priest and then takes a large sum of money from him at the end.

(Geoffrey Chaucer: Author of the Canterbury Tales)

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Week 7 Storytelling: The Unruly Boy

(Screaming boy: Flikr)

There once was a little boy who was very unruly. He liked to break things and cause a lot of destruction. His poor mother was at her wits end with him. Everyday, she dropped him off at school in the morning. Everyday she always got a call for her to come get him. One day, the school called and told her to come get the boy and to never bring him back.

"Oh what will I do!?" fretted the mother. "I cannot miss work and keep him!"

She turned to the mischievous child and scolded him.

"Son," she said sternly, "you cannot keep breaking things and acting up at school. I cannot take off work and keep you and schools will not take you if you continue to act up."

This made the son angry. He began to thrash about and destroy things in the house. The mother called out very loudly for him to stop, but he didn't. He broke all sorts of things. He broke the lamps, he broke the table, he broke the arm chairs, and he wouldn't stop. His mother got louder and louder yelling at him, but his fury just had to run its course.

Once he stopped, the mother knew she had to do something. She called a strict military school and asked them to take in her son. They agreed so she packed his things and sent him off. She hoped he would come home a changed boy when she saw him next.

A few weeks passed with no word from the school or her son. Then one night, while she was eating dinner alone and thinking of him, the phone rang. The commotion she heard on the other line was insane. She could hardly hear the Sergeant because of all of the noise and chaos.

"Your boy...." was all she heard the man say. She knew what was going on. Her son was having one of his fits and causing all sorts of destruction at this school. She told the man to put her on the phone with him.

"SON!" she boomed, "You calm down this instant!!!"

But it was no use. She could not control him when she was right next to him. She was even less powerful to stop him from a distance. The pattern continued on. The boy would throw a fit and his mother would desperately yell and try to calm him down, but with no avail.They were like lightning and thunder. Hardly ever one without the other.

Author's note: The story I chose to write about was the an old Nigerian folktale called The Story of Lightning and Thunder. I chose to tell the story with the characters as humans. In the original one, they are a ram and her son. The son is destructive and does damage to the village while the mother yells at him. The king tries to banish the son further and further away until he is forced to banish them to the sky. And that is where we get lightning and thunder from. 

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Week 7 Reading Diary B: Nigerian Folktales

Nigerian Folktales

The Story of the Lightning and the Thunder: This story is neat. I like the explanation given for what thunder and lightning are. This story could be told in a different style easily. I could make them real people or something else to tell my version of the story. I like how it has a mother son dynamic and I think this will be a really good addition to my portfolio.

The Affair of the Hippopotamus and the Tortoise: The thing about these tales is that they all explain natural things that happen in nature. In this one, they seek to explain why the hippo lives in the water. I like stories about hippo's because I think they are terrifying and interesting. This story portrays the hippo's as powerful yet true to their word. I like how honorable they are in this story. But at the same time they are portrayed as powerful and scary to the other animals because they do as they say.

Why Dead People are Buried: This story attempts to explain why dead people are buried. The story goes that a dog was supposed to deliver a message to the people from the Creator about putting their dead bodies in a compound and covering them with wooden ashes so they would be revived the next day. However, the dog gets hungry and get's sidetrack and forgets his message. This seems to be a common theme in African stories because I read some a while ago were they were trying to guess the daughter's names and the dog got distracted by food then too. Then he sends a sheep who messes the message up and when the dog finally remember's his message they don't believe him. This is interesting because dogs are supposed to be loyal and man's best friend but the people in this story do not believe him and this story give dogs a bad reputation.

Week 7 Reading Diary A: Nigerian Folkstories

Nigerian Folkstories

The Pretty Stranger who Killed the King: The moral of this story is never trust strangers. The old witch who turned herself into a pretty woman killed the king for wealth. This basically goes against all of Disney's fairy tales because all of the princesses marry good looking strangers! I like this story because it is a little more realistic than the fairy tales I grew up learning about.

Why the bat flies by night: This story left me with a few questions. One, was the bat really trying to kill the bush rat?  Did he know he was going to go home and try it and die? It makes me curious to know if he is really a bad guy or if he was just playing a joke and it went wrong. I do like how this story gave a hierarchy to the animal world though. The wife reported the bat to the king and everyone followed his orders to catch the bat.

The Fish and the Leopard's Wife: This story was interesting to me because of the humanistic characteristics given to the animals. The animals were in a feud because of the fish and the leopard's wife having an affair. This is a very adult animal tail. I can't imagine any parent telling this to their child as a bedtime story here in the US. I also find it interesting that the leopard decided to let the king take care of the fish instead of killing him. Saying that he did it because they were old friends really doesn't make a lot of sense to me. You probably aren't really good friends if someone was sleeping with your wife behind your back...


Thursday, October 1, 2015

Week 6: Extra Reading Diary: Congo Unit

Congo Unit

(Women of the Congo; 1885)

The Jealous Wife: These stories are crazy to me because all of the men take multiple wives which is just a different cultural practice than what I am accustom to. This story is super sad. I feel like the wife got what she deserved, but it is sad that she killed her child. However, I think karma is a big factor in this story and in African culture because I big theme in the stories I read from the Congo are that you get what you deserve.

How the Wives Restored Life to their Husband: This story also involves a man with multiple wives. They are very glutenous and were always needing more food. The man went out and was killed trying to kill an ox. One of them dreamt he was dead, the other led the way to him, and the last one brought him back to life. The man thought that the one who brought him back to life was the most important, but the women thought they were all important. This story really showed the difference between women and men.

How Gazelle got Married: This story shows another theme in African stories. That is guessing the names of women to take as bride. The antelope showed up to marry a man's daughter's (another multiple wife theme) and can't guess the name of his daughter's so he is turned away. But after a time a gazelle and his dog show up and eventually guess them so he gets to wed them. This makes the antelope made and he declares war on the gazelle.