Week 3 Summary

Week 3 was a busy week!

I enjoyed reading and responding to “Ice Man”. Along with “Ice Man”, I chose to respond to “The Bride Comes to Yellow Sky”. As I stated in my earlier post, it allowed me to experience the Western theme from a different viewpoint. In conjunction with that, I applied Kurt Vonnegut’s ideas regarding the shape of stories to Elmore Leonard’s writing. I enjoyed these two assignments a lot. I found the analytical aspect fun and different from what I was expecting out of this course. Every week seems to surprise me!

I also had fun creating my Outlaw character. I didn’t describe everything about Rose Oakley because I was unsure of where to take her next. I think the air of mystery about her adds to her pariah nature.

For the writing assignments this week I chose to write a letter To my Mom. I really enjoyed this one, and I even shared it with her! In addition to this, I chose to describe my lunch (4 stars) and create a western haiku (2 stars) inspired by Mabel Strickland and the daily create assignment.

I decided that I was going to group my daily creates into one post. For some reason it makes me feel more organized to have them all grouped together. I simply create a draft post and add a daily create every time I complete one.

Speaking of organization… I finally decided on a sidebar menu for my blog. I struggled with the organization of it (along with creating menus), but eventually settled on what is visible on my blog now (who knows, I could change it again). I appreciated the hierarchy appearance of it, along with the ability to see how many posts belong to each category.

Next week I plan on reading the directions carefully (I missed the part that I had to read TWO short stories) and focus on getting my work done earlier in the week. I also want to comment at least once a week. I want to aim for two but I’m setting the bar low for myself. This week I at least made one comment.

I’m interested in seeing what is in store for Week 4!

Response – The Bride Comes to Yellow Sky

Even “The Bride Comes to Yellow Sky” didn’t offer me a gun battle! I highly expected one, especially with imagery often seen in Western movies:

The barkeeper went to the door and locked and barred it. Reaching out of the window, he pulled in heavy wooden shutters and barred them. Immediately a solemn, chapel-like gloom was upon the place. The drummer was looking from one to another. “But, say,” he cried, “what is this, anyhow? You don’t mean there is going to be a gun-fight?”

The story follows a newlywed couple traveling back to Yellow Sky. At the town, a man known as Scratchy has become belligerent. He is known for his violent attitude when he is drunk. When the new couple arrives and is confronted by Scratchy, Potter disarms him by informing him of his new wife. The two individuals part ways without any bloodshed or violence.

So far the stereotype of Western’s as purely gun slinging dramas has not been met. However, the idea that white men are superior is heavily mentioned, along with the idea that women are valued for their skills at home.

Response – Kurt Vonnegut on the Shapes of Stories

I enjoyed watching Kurt Vonnegut’s video regarding the shape and course of stories, specifically his use of humor regarding the topic. After reading and responding to the short story, “Ice Man“, I struggled to fit a shape Vonnegut described to the story.

The main character starts out well, but upon meeting the I.C.E agent (the Ice Man) his story line begins to decline. At this point the protagonists story line never recovers, as in the end, his rodeo earnings are taken from him and he is arrested.

I drew a picture (taking from example Vonnegut’s drawing) of the story line for Ice Man:


It’s a bleak story.

The other story “The Bride Comes to Yellow Sky” also didn’t follow the story line that I expected. It failed to meet my preconceived idea of a Western theme involving dramatic gun battles and good vs. evil.

Here is a picture of how I viewed this story line:


It starts out slightly better than normal, then gets worse with the introduction of Scratchy. The story is then returned to slightly better after Potter disarms Scratchy.

Response – Ice Man

The Ice Man, written by Elmore Leonard, did not end how I expected it to end. It started out as what I saw as a typical Western; a group of manly men out celebrating rodeo victory end up confronted by the law. These men were discriminated against by an Immigration and Custom Enforcement officer, who doesn’t hide his bias at all.

“I suppose cause you people, same as the colored, all look pretty much the same. You know what white people in olden times use to call Indins? Goddamn red niggers.”

I expected the story to end in a blazing gun battle between the two opposing sides, but in the end the “Ice Man” simply arrested the individuals for being Indians.

I watched “No Room To Die”, (and made a fun trailer for it), which shared a similar theme (although with a happier ending). While the government wasn’t the antagonist of the film, the individuals mistreating minorities were. The main character in the movie became an individual set on saving a group of people being harmed.

I enjoyed this short story and greatly appreciated a new viewpoint on the Western theme. It allowed the reader to follow the struggles of a non-white individual.

Daily Create – Week 3

  1. Media tribute to early 20th century rodeo cowgirl Mabel Strickland

2) Old Western saying

3) Historical post

Writing Assignment – Instagram Is Down…DESCRIBE Your Lunch To Me!

Earlier today I trudged through the snow for lunch with Christine, Britta, Maddy and Kelsey. We walked from campus over to Kumo Sushi where we each ordered about three rolls. I ordered, as part of the lunch special, the spicy scallop roll, tuna & avocado roll and the spicy salmon roll. Before the rolls were ready we were each served miso soup in a black and red bowl. The sushi rolls were brought out upon a square white plate accompanied by a tray for soy sauce. They were delicious. I ate all of the rolls I ordered for myself and then proceeded to eat the rolls that my friends couldn’t finish (lame, right?). I tried eating the rolls with ginger for the first time. Nothing special about it in my opinion, it didn’t really taste like anything

I just described my lunch earlier today. Of course my roommate took a picture of her sushi plate before digging in, but this assignment wasn’t calling for that.

Writing Assignment – To my Mom

Dear Mom,

Thank you for being an amazing mother. You may not feel like you have, but you’ve raised four fantastic daughters. Each one of us loves you very much. I’m so thankful I look forward to coming home and hanging out with you; I’m thankful for the wonderful relationship that we have.

I hope to travel more with you, and share some laughs and tears. I hope to make it through these tough years ahead of us.



(Dad, Isabelle, Samantha, Mom, Sarah; I’m taking the picture and making them laugh)