The Common Effects of COVED-19

Covid-19

Here is a single word to describe the world right now: chaos. There is the world-wide pandemic called COVED-19, also known as the “coronavirus,” that is changing everybody’s lives just about everywhere. Many states in the U.S. have closed schools, airports are closed, workplaces are closed, and just about every “non-essential” public location is closed, including malls, restaurants, etc. Grocery stores have empty shelves, people are to stay at least 6 feet from each other if they must be out at all, and everyone is advised to stay quarantined in their homes. Federal officials here in the U.S. are really sort of doing too little too late, so state governments are taking over and have actually done pretty darn good so far. The economy is lowering us into the path of a recession.  Some folks aren’t being paid and kids are bored since no one is supposed to be with others outside of their households.  Cleaning supplies and hand sanitizers are getting expensive due to demand and mark-ups.  The internet is predicted to crash due to everyone trying to use it for keeping up with daily life in a digital manor, and, as I am sure this will be the most remembered effect of the pandemic, there is currently a world-wide scramble for toilet paper. No one can truly be sure how long this will all last. Schools in some states are closed for the year, others until further notice. Everything is up in the air. Even elite sports teams have canceled seasons! That is one thing I would never think to happen… they seem to go on through everything! We are sure living through history. It will probably be a unit in Social Studies classes for the next generation. Through all the craziness, we can look for some good. We can get some cleaning done, watch re-runs of the “Golden Girls,” and spend true quality time with our families. May it be over soon.

Penicillin: Compound Story Part Two

beaker

Hm, why is this newspaper dated in 1929? Roni thought. Maybe I should ask them how to get home I guess…

“Howard, we just isolated the pure Penicillin from the mold juice!” The unknown man exclaimed at Roni.

“Penicillin? I was just reading about that compound with my grandma!” Roni stated proudly.

The man looked confused though and then laughed, “You are so funny, Howard. Now let’s actually get to work. How about you jot down the physical and chemical properties of this pure Penicillin for further research. Here, grab something to scribble on and I will tell you what to write.” He handed Roni a notepad and pencil.

“But I am not Howard. My name is actually Roni, sir,” Roni stated. Both the men looked at Roni in confusion.

“Hello, Roni. My name is Ernst Chain.” The man with the mold juice said jokingly. Roni realized that it was pointless to convince these men that he is not the Howard they know.

Maybe I look like their Howard. Roni thought. Ernst grabbed gloves and some googles as he looked at the pure penicillin, and did something to it that Roni could not see.

“Jot down that the boiling point is 663.3±55.0 °C at 760 mmHg and the melting point of Penicillin is 214-217 °C.” The man, now identified as Ernst, said.

The Cure, Part 5

Andrea jumped. Shouting filled the air. People in gowns and suits and crowns rushed over to a person on the ground.

“What’s going on?” she shouted. “What happened?” Similar questions emanated from around her.

She pushed through the crowd, fighting to see the fallen person.

Her stomach dropped. Was it the plague? It hardly ever attacked royals. Her mind reeled through all of the terrifying possibilities, but nothing could have prepared her for what she saw.

Lying on the marble floor, deathly pale and eyes bulging and bloodshot, was High Queen Callista.

“No,” Andrea gasped. Tears flowed down her face. Her mother had the plague. Panic filled her mind, making everything foggy. She couldn’t live anymore. She couldn’t do this . . .

The sharp feeling of nails digging into her arm woke her up out of her daze. “We have to get out of here,” Prince Darian pleaded. “The plague is fast moving. We have to leave or we’ll die!”

Her mind cleared. She had to leave. Now. Around her royalty collapsed. The sound of skulls hitting the floor rang out. But . . . she couldn’t leave! Her mother was dying! This was her home!

An infected home that she couldn’t stay in much longer.

The truth penetrated her mind, and she hesitated before saying, “Okay.”

Prince Darian hauled her up off of her knees. She found herself sprinting, leading him through through the now dark and ominous ballroom, through mounds of fallen people. She dashed to the front entrance, cavernous and illuminated with flickering candles. She pulled open the ornate silver doors and down the shining glass path away from the palace. 

Time and tears blurred, until she found Prince Darian saying, “You don’t have to run anymore.”

They were standing in the vivid green grass outside of the evergreen forest, large and snowy. She found herself shaking, from cold and from fear, holding Prince Darian’s hand like it was the only thing left.

Sadness struck her like a monster digging in its claws. He was the only one left. Nobody had made it out of the palace with them. She took a trembling breath and said, “We’re the only survivors.”

Captain America: The Hero

Captain America

In a movie series of many individuals who originate from different elements from in and out of our world, come together to form the Avengers. Iron man (also referred to as Tony Stark), a highly accomplished inventor, uses his ability to add intelligence and thought into the group’s actions. The Hulk and Bruce Banner, a two-sided entity, who brings strength and muscle to the team; whether its physical strength, cause from the use of gamma rays, or mental intelligence strength, depending on whichever face he wears. Black Widow (also referred to as Natasha Romanoff) is the smallest in size due to her feminine state, however, her large amount of determination and dedication to the purpose of the Avengers, cancels out her small appearance. Thor, the alien from Asgard, is the reckless warrior, who shows the most amount of protectiveness towards his home, his family (including his brother Loki), and his team.

Captain America is the Avengers’ Blast from the Past! leader. Captain America (also referred to as Steve Rogers) comes from the small town of Brooklyn, New York. Because of his small, skinny state, Rogers is frequently bullied until his longest friend, Bucky, comes to his rescue. After multiple attempts, Rogers was able to enlist in the United States Army, only to be turned into a Super-Soldier. With his honest and positive disposition, the body-altering serum now in his blood, Captain America brings strategy, honesty, and loyalty not only to the Avengers but to those who are bullied and treated unfairly, causing Captain America to fit the role of a hero.

Captain America was originally introduced to the division of S.H.I.E.L.D during World War II and later introduced to the forming of the Avengers in the early 2000s. Captain America has since been willing to do whatever is needed to protect the people of Earth and to carry out the goal of the Avengers. According to Vogler’s writings and guidelines, a hero is one of two varieties; unwilling and willing. In the movie, The Winter Soldier, the S.H.I.E.L.D base is over-run by a group of HYDRA agents. To identify the identities of the HYDRA agents, Caption America speaks out, stating what the agents have done and that they must be stopped. To prove his commitment to stopping HYDRA, Rogers states, “The price of freedom is high; it always has been. But it’s a price I’m willing to pay.” Without knowing whether or not his speech swayed any confused S.H.I.E.L.D operators, Captain America and Natasha Romanoff (Black Widow) continue into the fight against HYDRA.

Without knowing Steve Roger’s background, one would think Captain America to be flawless. He is a strong American soldier that is always there to lead his team. However, Rogers may be TOO strong compared to your average American soldier. From the effects of a super-soldier serum, Rogers gains the increased strength and speed that a normal human does not have. Although his strength and speed make him different, it isn’t necessarily considered a flaw. Steve Rogers is from the past, so to say. During World War II, the Captain sacrifices himself to save the lives of millions of people located in New York. By landing a fast-moving plane into the icy waters, Rogers is forced unconscious and is covered in thick ice, the only protection he receives is from his Adamantium and Vibranium shield. In his “previous, past” life, Steve Rogers had a relationship with the agent Carter. Since his disunion with Peggy Carter, Rogers has felt as if he is missing a part of his life. During the movie Avengers: Endgame, Captain America is sent back into time to find one of the six infinity stone, and while he is in 1970 New Jersey, Rogers notices a picture of him on a desk. He later identifies the desk to be Agent Peggy Carter’s desk. Towards the end of the movie, Captain America travels back into time to return the six stolen infinity stones, however, the captain doesn’t return during his allotted time. Steve Rogers had made the decision to stay in the 1970s time period with Peggy Carter. The captain had strict orders to return the stones and return without changing the timeline, Rogers, however, had decided on his own to stay, which caused him to display a sense of hastiness or recklessness towards the possible outcome of a change in the timeline.

Throughout the course of Captain America’s movies, he experiences the death of his childhood best friend, his mid 1900s romantic partner, and of the symbolical death of his past self. During the movie Captain America: The First Avenger, Rogers and his friend Bucky are on a fast-moving train, when the side is blasted open. With the force of the wind and the change in air pressure, Bucky is cast outward and falls to his death before the Captain is able to save him. When Rogers wakes up from his coma, he learns that he was asleep for seventy years and Peggy Carter, his romantic partner, is close to death. Once she does die, he is left in a time period where he knows no one; he had lost his best friend seventy years earlier and now he had lost the love of his life. According to Vogler’s writing and guidelines of heroes, a symbolic death may represent a hero’s failure or the loss of themselves. In Captain America’s case, he lost the part of him that lives in the 1900s; the part of him that fought as a soldier and with soldiers. Vogler continues to write of how a symbolical death may include the hero to make a sacrifice. Steve Rogers continues to sacrifice himself throughout the movies, whether it be when he is fighting a robot who calls himself Ultron, an alien who wishes to decrease Earth’s population, or fighting his long-lost childhood best friend.

            A sacrifice from a hero, is their willingness to give up something valuable, whether it’s an object or even their life, in favor of a group or a purpose, according to the writings of Vogler. In the movie Captain America: Winter Soldier, Bucky is under control and is forced to forget his relationship with Rogers and ordered to kill the captain. While trying to do so, Captain America and Bucky are fighting, when Rogers stops and tells Bucky, “I’m not gonna fight you. You’re my friend.” Bucky continues to fight Rogers, without the captain not fighting back, causing Captain America to fall unconscious and out of the plane. Captain America sacrifices his life on the belief that he won’t hurt or fight his friend, even if they don’t remember their friendship.

           Throughout the seven movies that Captain America makes an appearance in, he doesn’t show much of a growth in character. Throughout, a significant change in his character may be how he leads his team of superheroes. In the beginning of Roger’s leadership, he treats the Avengers as more of a soldier unit rather than a team of superheroes. As time progresses, the captain learns to treat them as a group of people who have the power and reception to question and discuss rather than just follow a simple order.

             According to Vogler, a hero is either willing, unwilling, a loner, or group oriented; has character flaws, whether they are obvious or not. A hero makes sacrifices, either its sacrificing themselves or an object. A hero must have some kind of confrontation with death, and they grow as a character. In the case for Captain America, is a hero willing to give up his life for his beliefs and for the Avengers. He knows of his flaws and he lets his flaws shape who he is as a person. He has come into some kind of confrontation with death, whether it be symbolical or a relationship loss. He is a Hero.

On the Road to Peace

dove of peace

What is peace one might ask,
A magificent thing that will save us all,
Without it, humanity is a failing task,
That will cause our fall,

Some help others in finding it,
While others think they can create it if they were in charge,
If you don’t let pride consume you bit by bit,
Then your hate becomes small and your love becomes large,

Fear not- hope is arising in everyone,
And one day peace will be upon us,
In every mother, father, daughter, and son,
We will be united in kindness and trust,

Peace lies on the road ahead,
If you believe, then pass on what I have said.

The Cure, Part 4

ballroom dancing

“It is decided,” King Nordin boomed, though he looked unhappy. His brow was furrowed and his lips were twisted. “As soon as we can, we need to get as many medical staff working towards a cure. Any other topics you would like to discuss?”

The crowd stayed silent.

“Okay, that dismisses our formalities. Now we will transition to ballroom dancing.”

The royals quickly rose and proceeded to the dance floor.

Shimmering lights hung from the ceiling, illuminating the dance floor with a soft glow. A massive chandelier hung down, the silver-tinted crystals twinkling.

Andrea made her way down the stairs in awe, always forgetting how beautiful the dance floor could be. 

Her black boots touched the marble, and a soft, twirling melody began. Servants wielding stringed instruments strummed gently, standing against the crystalline walls.

It was only then Andrea realized she had nowhere to go.

Naturally the kings and queens paired up with their spouses, and many siblings danced together, giggling at the slow waltz.

But Princess Andrea didn’t have any friends. Or siblings. Or a husband, for that matter. So she just stood, hoping nobody realized she was alone.

“Is that you, High Princess Andrea?” a voice asked. She turned around. It was Prince Darian, smirking.

Please don’t call me that,” she snapped, surprised at how sharp her voice sounded. She found herself naturally annoyed at Prince Darian, the way he walked, talked, and acted.

“No need to be rude,” he laughed. “I just want to dance.”

Andrea was revolted. But he . . . he . . .

She couldn’t exactly turn down an offer to dance, could she? Not if she wanted to make her parents angry.

She nodded slowly, and before she knew it, she was swept into the dance swiftly. Prince Darian almost made her look graceful. He was an amazing dancer, she grudgingly admitted. It was sort of true.

“So, how are you?” he asked. She was surprised at how he managed to keep a conversation while dancing.

“Okay, I guess,” she muttered. Things were getting awkward quickly. Why did she have to be so nice and let random princes dance with her?

“I always have such a good time at the Kingdom Ball,” he said, winking. What was it with him and winking? She felt her cheeks heat up in anger.

“How is it to live in Argentrea?” he asked.

“Fine,” Andrea huffed.

“You don’t have to be mean,” Darian said, looking genuinely angry. “I’m just trying to make friends.”

“Sorry,” Andrea said truthfully. She didn’t realize he had the same problem as her.

He dropped her hands, and like that, the magical dance was over. Hurt leaked into Andrea. Wait—didn’t she just hate him two seconds ago?

“Please don’t walk away,” she whispered as he started to move. “I don’t have any friends either.”

His hazel eyes stared into hers, full of tears she didn’t know were there. Her eyes filled too.

But just like that, a scream shattered the tension between them.

This I believe

 

mountains and lake

Nature is a critical cycle; it is at a constant change.

There is destruction to its magnificence, yet splendor to its ruins.

We are refreshed by the soft spring showers of mother nature.

There are four seasons in the year the same that there are four directions in our compass: north, east, south, and west.

Often, I find myself prey to the predator of the elements of the fire, wind, water, and earth.

I want to trust that, in society, I will be indorsed to live in a living realm for the rest of my life.

When I walk on the earth, I am the upright roots in the world.

I grow until I reach the sky, and still there is nothing above me.

I shall always walk in and out of the cordial shade of the tall oak trees of my grandparent’s house, where I first learned to love the smallest things.

My heart will always belong to the breeze in the limbs of delicate evergreens.

I believe in peace with the wild, even in the madness of time itself: that we shall rest before its waking hours.

The great hawk at the top of the mountain does not fear the future, so why should I?

The serenity of the woods shall press softly around me; this is where I feel safe.

The leaves conceal the branches the same as I conceal myself from my foes.

The rushing river does not retain the emotions of the world.

Do people not still revolt? Countries still at war? Is there not still poverty and hunger and violence?

But there is also kindness, and the gentle hands of souls who seek for peace in the core of anger.

We are born of the world, and will die of the world, as completely the human race.

Nature will always be above us, no matter how low we sink into our own arrogance.