I’ve Got a Secret Assignment

In high school, a relative was diagnosed (passive voice) with a mental illness. I kept this as a secret for various (several?)  reasons. The stigma that surrounds mental illness, lack of knowledge, embarrassment, and because the relative is my brother. It wasn’t until a graduated high school that I told close friends . However, I have yet to fully disclose to or converse with someone outside of my family and intimate relationships. Perhaps because I’m a private person or because I’m still unsure of how one has that particular (more concise language, please) conversation. The secrecy of my situation was to protect and preserve my brother’s image. In certain situations, I would lie regarding where he was. Instead of saying he was in an in-patient treatment facility I would say he’s in Ft. Lauderdale or Coconut Grove.

The more comfortable I became with my brother’s illness, the less defensive I became at having the conversation. However, I still am not comfortable divulging information to others. The discussion regarding mental illness is either radical or ignorant. There is a lack of sensitivity and knowledge with the topic of mental illness.

Most often, secrecy, lying, and confidentiality seem to be interrelated. I created a boundary that kept people outside of my space by lying and continuing confidentially among my family. I also controlled the conversation, or narrative when others asked about my brother. A Mental illness is not easy to understand or deal with (preposition at the end of a sentence). There are a lot of triggering situations that occur. For example, when the mentally handicapped disabled person undergoes a crisis and there is are a cop and hospital involvement. These experiences demand a lot of emotional and mental support.

By guarding my secret , I deflected triggers, discomfort, and intrusion into my life as well as my family’s life. I was able to maintain the privacy I wanted , and luckily, those closest to me were respectful and understanding. This secret is different from most. It’s not dangerous or hurtful. It’s not a secret like the one Edward Snowden revealed to the world regarding the NSA. A secret that he felt compelled to tell. My secret served my family, my brother, and myself.

Excellent use of narrative. Captured level of interest. Mention one of the class objectives. Please check language next time.


Lies, Secrecy, and Confidentiality

Lies, secrecy , and confidentiality the can often times be confused for (with?) one another. There is one story that I can recall that includes lies, secrecy and confidentiality. Last spring semester I was given the opportunity to study abroad in Valencia, Spain. The program I did was very much known for being pretty lenient on work and offered a lot of travel time . . Classes were typically held (passive voice) from Monday to Thursday which meant a three day weekend to travel to different cities throughout Europe.Typically , my closer group of friends and I would plan trips to places like Germany, the Czech Republic, or even Norway. When we were given the a chance to possibly take a trip down to the African continent we were very much intrigued. The trip was to the beautiful and diverse country of Morocco. This trip was brought up to us by one of the students studying with us, not in our direct group of close friends. A lot of the parents of the people who were studying abroad with me were very open to their kids traveling around the world. My parents on the other hand always wanted to know where I was, what my plans were for the weekend and most importantly if the city that we were visiting would be safe. This was one trip that my parents did not approve of. They would give me reasons to not go such as “women are not treated fairly there ”,  .” “their crime rate is incredibly high ”,  .” and “people get abducted there all the time ”,  .” Although many of the reasons are valid , they did not stop me from wanting to go down to Africa. After a lot of arguing with me, they said to me that they would cut me of my travel funds if I took this trip. Of course , as a rebellious world traveler (¿?) that I wanted to be, I booked this trip without telling them. (really?) I was able to book the trip in a way that made it look like I was just taking a flight down to visit southern Spain. I decided that I would take this trip and suffer the consequences later. Another one of my friends happened to be of Moroccan dissent. Her situation was rather complicated. She comes from a family with relatives that had lived in Morocco, and these family members happen to fund her schooling. She had sat down all of the students who were going to Morocco on this tour and told us that whatever we did we could not tag her in any pictures or postings about this trip, as her family told her that if she were to ever go to Morocco they would take away her funds for going to school in the United States. (sentence too long) In this case , we needed to keep confidentiality for her sake. As for mine , it was more about keeping a lying and keeping a secret from my parents.

No clear transitions, a full block of text. Good narrative. The example of secrecy at the end?

Have I stepped into the Twilight Zone? – Lesan Sierra (Team 3)

As I prepared myself entering to enter the twilight zone, I thought to myself was this going to be easy? What really came into my head was can this be possible? For some, actually for many , a task like this can be excruciating to them. The fact that many Americans are glued (passive voice) to their phones makes it even harder to try and stay away from the news. In 2016, a data resulted that 38% of American adults get their news from social media. Television coming in first and radio coming in third and of course you have newspapers. Which I don’t even know why that is still is a thing. (gravity?) So , it’s understandable why it can be so hard for many of us to avoid the news, even if we don’t want to.  The news at this point would basically mean disconnect yourself. Not just from the news but from your friends and even family.

Then you have a person like me, who already avoids the news. Why? Why would someone like me, and American citizen, avoid the American news (press?) or just news on the world in general? Simply (Just?) because the fact of the matter is a lot of what happens on television is perceived to us very differently that what might really be happening. Doesn’t necessary mean I do not see the news at all. (contradictory?)

Without any further ado, it was time for me to try the news blackout experiment. This (unclear antecedent) didn’t mean don’t turn on CNN or the local news network. This (again) meant don’t even get on any social media. That to me was harder than actually not looking at the news.  Two days back to back doesn’t really feel much however when you stop yourself from exploring the internet, it feels like the only thing that moves around you is the clouds. This , by the way , is actually pretty relaxing when you are trying to no get “in the loop”.  Day one on this experiment as it wasn’t that harsh on me. I kept my self-busy from time to time and actually got a lot done. Normally on an average day, anyone will spend about 135 minutes on social media. That is almost 2 full hours and thirty minutes of your time.

The second day came along , and that is when I started to feel a little unplugged from the world. Fully (Entirely?) unplugged not just like a loose plug. The urge to check what was going on with the world wasn’t what was tickling me. It was the urge to check what was going on with my friends. Watching funny memes being shared (passive voice) on Facebook. That all comes along with some sort of story or opinion of a story also being shared. (passive voice) This is why Therefore I had to resist. Ending my twilight zone cycle I came into the conclusion that avoiding the news for me was not an issue at all. I guess you can say I live in my own bubble and I’ll agree with you on that.

Good work

Sources: (Good references and an excellent initiative, but next time identify them)

Source 1

Source 2


48 Hours News Blackout

In order to To experience the solitude that William Deresiewicz explains in “The End of Solitude” I took it up a notch and deleted Snapchat, an app I heavily use. In the beginning, I was constantly (continually?) re-downloading and removing it. Snapchat is perhaps the most frequently used app among my generation (which?), where one can upload at any time of day, any moment; either for a few seconds or minutes. Throughout my day I was able to enjoy more present moments at dinner with my family, write, and read. I moderate my time efficiently despite living in an (an?) internet culture. And the more hours I spent without Snapchat and the news, the better I felt despite a lingering impulse to check my apps.

Forty-eight hours without knowledge and awareness in a 24 hours news cycle disconnects one entirely from the outside world. The sensation is rewarding; personally , I was more at ease without the constant notifications and updates I see as I scroll through social media and news outlets. Knowledge of the news disrupts our peace; depending on how often one consumes and reacts to the news. (Good) However, the advantage of infinite information and news delivery can come across as a privilege, especially when there are countries like Venezuela and Cuba where there is only governmentcontrolled news.

My personal (personal, tautology?) demands of being aware 24/7 does intrude on my mental wellness and I, as the majority of our society, must find a balance in how much we read, how long we disconnect, and when enough is enough. I make time throughout my day to engage in meditation to experience absolute silence. Ten, or twenty minutes, an hour or so does help one be more mindful, less reactive and calm.

To experience solitude is easy, despite modern technology and culture. However, as a citizen in this society , it is important (essential?) to be aware and informed. (Excellent) Following the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting that occurred on Valentine’s Day 2018, I censored my media consumption. The media nowadays is difficult to trust and process. And when an event of such magnitude occurs, news coverage becomes an obsession for all outlets whether TV or radio. A shooting in proximity to my city is hard mentally and emotionally. (Excellent)

The students of Stoneman Douglas have become icons. People on social media are desperate to follow their Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter profiles. Media outlets are searching to interview, to broadcast, and showcase the faces and voices of Stoneman Douglas. This (unclear antecedent) demonstrates Deresiewicz was correct about the celebrity and connectivity. (Excellent) The need to be involved and seen dominates the contemporary self. Deresiewicz writes, “Celebrity and connectivity are both ways of becoming known. This is what the contemporary self wants. It wants to be recognized, wants to be connected: It wants to be visible. If not to the millions, on Survivor or Oprah, then to the hundreds, on Twitter or Facebook. This is the quality that validates us, this is how we become real to ourselves — by being seen by others.”

Good work

48 Hour Black Out

In preparation for this experiment (assignment?) , I made sure to disconnect my self myself from all news outlets from February 15 to the 17th. In light (Considering?) of what had happened the previous day, on February 14th, at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Knowing that gun control would be a major thing that would be brought (passive voice) to light in the next few days. I deleted my Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and Snapchat apps from my phone (radical). These are the outlets where I connect to most to see what is going on in the world. I do not typically go on social media to see world news , but there is always someone posing something about current events making these social outlets, media outlets as well.

Many times , when I’m not on my phone or don’t have it near me , I feel like I am not connected (passive voice) to the world. I feel as though I am in a world of solitude. In our society, if we aren’t talking to our best friends at all times , we may not even be best friends. For me personally if felt as tho (?) I needed my phone to fill in the gaps of my life of awkward silence or moments where I didn’t want to speak with others. It felt odd to not be able to jump on to a social media and check what the latest news about the victims or how there were going to be charging the kid who had the horrible idea of committing such an atrocity. (Nice)

In out day and age the news is everything we ever really worry about (preposition at the end of a sentence?). (no, not really) Every news outlet has their own opinion about whatever is happening in our country at any given time. We hear about everything from actual meaningful news to what a celebrity did on their weekend vacation to Cabo. (that’s the news)

In reflection about how I spent the last 48 hours of my life “news free”, I felt a tremendous about (amount?) of solitude and felt this assignment was assigned at one of the best and most difficult time (challenging time?) for South Florida; A time where so many people came together for a very important significant cause (what cause?). Besides the feeling of solitude, on my last few hours of doing this experiment I felt so much peace. It was almost as if I lived in a neutral world. (Nice) I think technology yeah (really?) takes over our lives , but it also enhances our lives.

Language Mariana, language.

Lack of theory and concepts.

Comments will always be Comments (Lesan Sierra, Team 03)

Can expressing how we feel reflect the truth and only but the truth? or Or are we inclined to express (what? Sound incomplete) with our emotions?

There is a reason why comments are even allowed in most online articles, and that is to express how we feel towards the subject that is being discussed (passive voice) about. (preposition at the end of a sentence?) For Sure sure, you can bring up facts and throw in some politics in the mix. The end of the day, a comment will always be how we feel and how it impacts us. The moment we get deep into writing is our emotional appeal (Pathos). In Applebaum’s (reference please) articles , for example, not everyone will have the same believes or will argue that what she is saying is right. Why? Simple because we all have our opinions in on how we see things and that is why we reflect on the articles in the comments towards how we feel. Regardless of how well the article (repetitive, maybe piece?) is writing, Applebaum can have all three subjects knocked down from the rhetorical triangle. Comments will always be comments. I must disagree on what the article says in regard regarding to the form being is not “user friendly” I don’t think that makes any impact at all. Regardless if you must fill out a long (a lengthy?) form our or short form, people will still express how they will upon the subject.

When the New York times Times picks its comments, they seem to be choosing wisely (Nice!). They don’t seem to be biased at all with their picks. Instead, they seem to pick the ones that offer a valid point in on either sides side of the discussion. I feel like the NYT comments are more associated with Logos, with a tiny bit (really?) of Ethos. The readers pick on the other hand is more towards Logos once again, but a small portion of Pathos. The reader will pick (repetitive, maybe choose?) someone who is more towards on their side.

In the article “why Why our memory fails us” it’s clear that once our memory isn’t all vivid, we act upon Pathos. I have heard plenty of verbal sparring over the political discussion , and once we can’t seem to remember tiny details, we start to get emotional. A little angry to be more precise. It’s hard to argue without having the correct , true facts (tautological: facts are facts). Then again, what is are true facts? (tautological) When everyone starts bashing at you because your views on the topic is are the opposite of the other persons person views. (No, not really)

Let’s not forget about the kind comments. Aside from the very irrelevant comments and the very penny-pinching comments, we all seem to really to pay too much attention to the nice ones. It’s true what the article ‘Don’t read the comments” mentions. We can simply (maybe another synonym?) just not engage and walk away from the comments. For some, that can be very hard to avoid because we just need to express how we feel. For others, on the other hand, they can care less what others have to say about how they feel towards the subject.  Regardless, at the end of the day, (Cliché) we all want to voice our opinion. Especially if it is on the internet where we are all safe from everyone else. (No, we are not, believe me).

Nice the intent with the personal tone, not so good on theory and concept. Watch the language, please.

Memories, Ethos, Pathos, Logos


I personally (tautological) believe that everyone believes what he or she hears so wherever they hear first is what he or she tends to believe (repetitive) is true (why not right?). (Too naive for a concept).

The article “Why Our Memories Fail Us” is a very much relevant article even though it was written and published three years ago. One of the key points that I see Christopher F. Chabris and Daniel J. Simons make is that our memory is as biased as we are (You know, you can do it). We choose to remember what is real and what is not in the means of what is better for us. (A little bit more, please).

In their article, Chabris and Simons typically use Ethos and Logos as a way to speak about memory and why it fails us. By using moments in recent history such as former President Bush’s (which one?) recollection of 9/11 and Hillary Clinton’s memory of the time she visited the warstricken country of Bosnia. Many times people take these mix-ups of memories as these political leaders trying to suede ones opinion about each specific topic or idea when in reality they are people too. Our brains only work so well with memory , and we are only (too many, synonym please) capable of recalling whatever we are reminded of and told.

Each person who read reads this article can come up with different ways of viewing it. For instance , one of the readers topic topics claims that the writer memory of being intelligent is incorrect. He then goes to “Instances where he might have not said the most brilliant statement, using ethos to make you feel the same was as they do. Another reader commented that mixing up memories is a common mistake and that the people mentioned in this article are not to be at fault using pathos as his way of portraying what he felt from this article. (Where the quote end, please? Reference?)

When it comes to the NTY Picks (some context, please), they are all focus more on what the human memory is capable of rather than the statements that were said (passive voice) in the article. They speak more of the objectivity and the issues on of why we remember what we remember. They do not dwell on the comments made about former President Bush or Hillary Clinton.

I believe that the system that the New York Times has for ranking comments is effective (maybe efficient?) because it brings to life those things that are most prevalent in our society today. Since so many people think so differently , I feel that the most intelligent comments end up at the top because people agree with them , so they like them causing the rink to go higher.