2.9 Reading response No. 1

Is social media having a positive or negative impact on the sport of mountain biking? Mike Levy, a Pink bike editor posed this question to numerous big names in the sport to gauge the reaction from people heavily involved the industry. What makes this article interesting is the differing opinions of everyone interviewed. The stereotype that older people hate social media is broken in this article, with Wade Simmons, a pioneer of the sport, stating that he believes social media is a useful tool and actually benefits the sport. This goes against what most older people are portrayed to believe which makes the article an interesting read.

Social media has a huge impact on everyone’s lives, with over 3 billion social media users’ worldwide.  I have seen the impact of social media on mountain biking, with people travelling to places just to get a photo and claim on their Instagram account that they have ridden in a famous place.  This is the same with all aspects of life; People are spending more time focusing on social media rather than enjoying what they are experiencing.  “If you’re thinking of how many likes your selfie at the top is going to get, you’re not in the moment.” I feel that people are oblivious to the fact that their life is often controlled by social media and that articles like this one need to be shared to make people aware. Without awareness people will continue to be live their live around social media. Going places just for the photo they can post, spending ages making the perfect post to gain more followers.

“Go ride” is Matt hunter’s response to everyone who claims that social media helps them with mountain biking.  “You can find a riding partner from your couch, just by swiping and typing. Social media also provides inspiration to ride.  Seriously, though, that’s all bullshit.” Matt Hunter is trying to show people that they are relying too much on social media to solve problems when they should be looking to the real world for the solution.

Reading this has taught me to appreciate what I’m doing, and to stop worrying about my social media image. It has also taught me to stop relying on social media to fix problems and to just “go ride” as Matt Hunter believes. I need to rely more on my actual friends and real-life relationships to help me, instead of my “friends” on social media. Mike Levy hasn’t just written an article for mountain bikers, but for any person who uses social media. I can highly recommend this article to anyone, any age, who uses social media, whether they ride mountain bikes or not. The ideas and topics discussed in the article will make everyone who reads it, completely reconsider the way they view social media.

2.4 Essay Task – Wilfred Owen

Wilfred Owen’s poems, Exposure and Dulce et decorum est are both dark, and full of death and destruction. The graphic realism Wilfred Owen portrays the idea that war is horrific and destructive, not glorious like the media paint it to be.  Exposure is all about how the cold is the deadliest enemy soldiers face.  Dulce et decorum est describes the graphic horror of war, showing to the reader that war isn’t all glory and victory. Wilfred Owens uses multiple different language techniques as ways of portraying his ideas and themes to the reader.

This example of personification “dawn massing in the east her melancholy army” from the poem Anthem for Doomed Youth is used by Wilfred Owen to show that dawn controls the deadly weather that is killing the soldiers.  “her melancholy army” is the storm clouds that are more deadly than the actually enemy the soldiers are facing. “dawn massing” was used by the author to show that the weather is out of human control. The deadliest enemy the soldiers face can’t be controlled or changed by anyone. These men are not being killed gloriously in battle like people believe, they are dying horrific, agonizing deaths in the muddy freezing trenches that they live in. Wilfred Owen wants to paint a dark and horrifying image for the reader to show that war is nothing like the glory filled stories they are told as a child.

The words “desperate glory” paint the picture of how war is glorified to cover up the true brutality of it.  Emotive language was used by Wilfred Owen to show that without glory people have no reason to justify sending soldiers into the horrific conditions that war actually is. If there was no glory then people would be shocked by the true depressing nature that war has.  People use the “glory” of war as a way of convincing innocent men into becoming soldiers and dying for their country.  The line, “The old lie, Dulce et decorum est, Pro patria mori” means it is sweet and fitting to die for ones country. The way Wilfred Owen says “the old lie” shows the reader that Owen doesn’t believe that its sweet and fitting, he believes that people are being lied to and coerced into fighting in the war.  Wilfred Owens use of Latin and emotive language is a way of showing that men are being lied to about war. War isn’t glorious and it isn’t “sweet and fitting to die for ones country” like everyone is being told.  As a child we are told all the glorious stories from our grandfathers fighting in the wars, but Wilfred Owen’s poetry challenges these glorified stories making us question what we are told and imagine the true horrors that our grandfathers faced as they sacrificed their lives for our country.

War isn’t glorious. It is dark, horrifying and brutal. The stories we are lead to believe about glory and victory over the enemy are just ways of justifying war. Wilfred Owen’s poems Exposure and Dulce et Decorum Est through the use of emotive language and personification portray this idea making the reader understand the true nature of war, and see the brutality that soldiers have to endure.

Exposure – Wilfred Owen

 

Iced east winds that knife us
pale flakes with fingering stealth come feeling for our faces.
Poignant misery of dawn
winds nonchalance
this frost will fasten on this mud and us, shriveling many hands,
Dawn massing in the east her melancholy army

The whole way through the poem weather and nature is portrayed as the major enemy the soldiers are facing. Even though they are fighting in horrific battles the deadliest enemy they face is actually exposure to the elements.  The cold is portrayed to have killed more people than the battles themselves. The harsh conditions and environment are actually what kills the most soldiers not that battles that they fight.  “bullets streak the silence. Less deadly that the air” This line is used by the author to prove his point that the biggest threat to the soldiers is the cold, more so than even the bullets being shot at them. “poignant misery of dawn” This quote that shows that as dawn arrives it bring a certain misery to the soldiers.

The piece of personification “dawn massing in the east her melancholy army” is used by the author to show that dawn controls the deadly weather that is killing the soldiers.  “her melancholy army” is the storm clouds that are more deadly than the actually enemy the soldiers are facing. “dawn massing” was used by the author to show that the weather is out of human control. The deadliest enemy the soldiers face can’t be controlled or changed by anyone.

The simile “like a dull rumor of some other war” was used  by the author to show that the most important battle is between the soldiers and the elements and that the actual war they were fighting is irrelevant in comparison. The actual war is just a “dull rumor” something the soldiers aren’t even concerned about.

 

Anthem for Doomed youth

The way the author mentions death and mourning throughout the poem obviously indicates that he has experienced immense loss in war.  The author talks about the scream of shells and the call of the bugles which means that the author is a soldier who has experience the chaotic nature of battle.

The words “passing bells” and “drawing down of blinds” convey to the reader that the author believes in respecting the dead.  “drawing down of blinds” was a way of showing respect and honour to someone how has recently passed away.  These words could also mean that the author has experience an intense amount of loss due to war.

The line “choir of wailing shells” is a piece of personification used by the author to describe the horrific noise of the battle field. The word choir was used to show that its not just one individual shell but multiple shells wailing through the air. The word wailing is used to portray that the shells have a high pitching screaming sound. The author through the use of language techniques can create a much more detail image for the reader. If the author just wrote “choir of shells” the image painted in the readers head wouldn’t be anywhere near as vivid or powerful.

“passing bells”, ” no mockeries now”, “demented”, “monstrous anger of the guns”, “drawing down of blinds”.  All these lines or words are examples of positive and negative images used by the author to contrast and show the reader that those who experience the brutality of war still get treated with respect after they die. The soldiers have to face the “monstrous anger of the guns” and most of them will die, however the dead soldiers are still treated with the respect that they deserve represented by the “drawing down of blinds”.

 

What is included?

Words:

Cancer
Wilfred Owen used the word of cancer to make the reader understand the the pain and horror that the soldiers faced. Everybody knows someone or at least understands the pain of losing someone to cancer. This means as the reader we are able to

All.
The word all was chosen because its powerful.  “All went lame; all blind”.  The author chose to use the word all instead of some because it creates a much more horrific, detailed image in the readers. All the soldiers are sick and have been affected by the war. If only some of the soldiers went lame and blind the image wouldn’t as graphic or powerful. The word all makes the reader focus more on the sentence because of the words authority.

Images:

The line “incurable sores on innocent tongues” paints an image of the soldiers being in horrific, agony but they don’t deserve what they are going through. The soldiers inhaling the mustard gas which results in agonizing pain and “incurable sores”. The “innocent tongues” tells us that the soldiers don’t deserve the pain they are being forced to endure.

The words “desperate glory” paint the picture of how war is glorified to cover up the true brutality of it. Without glory people have no reason to justify sending soldiers into the horrific conditions that war actually is. If there was no glory then people would be shocked by the true depressing nature that war has.

“the clumsy helmets” Personification
The piece of personification “the clumsy helmets” was used by the author to show how stupid and hard to use the helmets are. The author gave the helmets human qualities by calling them clumsy.  The word clumsy usually relates to someone who struggles to do things that should be simple.

The metaphor “as under a green sea, I saw him drowning” is used to describe the mustard gas the soldiers are struggling through as a  green sea, and that the coughing and not being able to breath is like the soldiers are drowning.  The author used this to create a darker and more horrific image for the reader to picture.

The line “my helpless sight” is a piece of personification that the author used to show that there is nothing that he can do. His sight is helpless meaning all he can do is sit there and stare as his dying friend lunges towards him. This creates a powerful image that the reader can understand as everyone knows what its like to lose the control of our bodies and just stand there and watch something horrific occur without being able to help.

 

Quotes

Lord of the Flies Quotes

“Maybe there is a beast… maybe it’s only us.”

“Fancy thinking the Beast was something you could hunt and kill!” said the head. For a moment or two the forest and all the other dimly appreciated places echoed with the parody of laughter. “You knew, didn’t you? I’m part of you? Close, close, close! I’m the reason why it’s no go? Why things are what they are?”

“I know there isn’t no beast—not with claws and all that, I mean—but I know there isn’t no fear, either.”
Piggy paused.
“Unless—”
Ralph moved restlessly.
“Unless what?”
“Unless we get frightened of people.”

Text connections

I don’t know

Ozymandias and Macbeth
In the poem Ozymandias the line “the hand that mocked them” shows that Ozymandias was a cruel ruler
Macbeth kills Duncan and Banquo so that he can become the king of scotland. both Ozymandias and macbeth were cruel rulers

 

 

Ozymandias

I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert… near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed:

And on the pedestal these words appear:
‘My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!’
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.

personification: “the hand that mocked them and the heart that fed”
This effect was used to show that the visage or face in the desert was cruel and fair at the same time. It relates to hubris because it shows Ozymandias felt that he was better than everyone else,

Speech

Why Shane McConkey was the most influential free ride skier.

Gaffney’s numerical assessment of radness or G.N.A.R, wide powder skis, and skiing a line butt naked while talking to your mum on your phone. None of this would have happened without the legend, Shane McConkey.
Shane McConkey was a professional big mountain skier and base jumper. He realized that the sport had veered away from the original purpose of having fun, instead gone towards a professional and elitist sport. To counter this, Shane stripped completely naked and skied the professional mogul course in front of a crowd of thousands. Needless to say he was banned from Vale, Colorado for life.

 

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The Game of GNAR started off as a stupid game between Shane and his friends but it steadily became an international phenomenon in the ski scene. The basis of the game was to have as much fun as possible whilst skiing some of the most technically lines in the world. Each line was given a certain number of points, but you can earn extra by throwing tricks or doing one of the Extra credits points. Example of such Extra credit points are, skiing Butt naked, talking to your mum on the phone while skiing, telling a stranger that you’re the best skier on the mountain. The list goes on and on. The more Shane laughed at something the more likely it would be added to the game. Shane had a quote which states, “If youre getting rad, but there is no one there to see it, are you really getting rad?”. This is pretty much the reason that on any day of the week at Squaw Valley you could hear a radness yell or see pole wacking. The idea of these to things was to generate the largest crowd you could. Shane loved the idea of having an audience and making people laugh. This lead to him embracing butt naked skiing. Could you imagine skiing completely naked in front of 50 people or more? It was nothing more than a walk in the park for Shane.

Shane was able to use the Game of GNAR as a platform for numerous ski movies which in turn gathered the attention of thousands of people. Pro athletes and amateur skiers were hooked into what he did. He bought hundreds of people to his home town of Squaw Valley, California generating thousands of dollars worth of income for the small community. Without Shane, Squaw would never have become the multi million dollar resort that it is today.

Shane McConkey made huge improvements on the technology of skis themselves. Previously most skis were super thin and wooden. Shane had been looking for something better that could glide straight over the snow. So naturally he decided to strap a pair of water skis to his ski boots and drop one of the gnarliest lines in Alaska. They worked perfectly. Within weeks all major ski companies had prototype “powder” skis under production. Another thing created by Shane, which had a huge influence on modern skiing.

Unfortunately Shane died in a horrific base jumping accident in 2009. i can say without a doubt, that even though his life was cut short, in the 40 years he was alive he did more for the sport of big mountain skiing than any other athlete. Can you name a more influential or pioneering professional skier? No you can’t. Cause there are none.