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Christmas Cookies
Although I have grown up to be entirely inept at the art of cooking, as to make even the most wretched chef ridicule my sad baking attempts, my childhood would have indicated otherwise; I was always on the countertop next to my mothers cooking bowl, adding and mixing ingredients that would doubtlessly create a delicious food. When I was younger, cooking came intrinsically with the holiday season, which made that time of year the prime occasion for me to unite with ounces and ounces of satin dark chocolate, various other messy and gooey ingredients, numerous cooking utensils, and the assistance of my mother to cook what would soon be an edible masterpiece. The most memorable of the holiday works of art were our Chocolate Crinkle Cookies, which my mother and I first made when I was about six and are now made annually.

Playground Memory
Looking back on a childhood filled with events and memories, I find it rather difficult to pick on that leaves me with the fabled warm and fuzzy feelings. As the daughter of an Air Force Major, I had the pleasure of travelling across America in many moving trips. I have visited the monstrous trees of the Sequoia National Forest, stood on the edge of the Grande Canyon and have jumped on the beds at Caesars Palace in Lake Tahoe. However, I have discovered that when reflecting on my childhood, it is not the trips that come to mind, instead there are details from everyday doings; a deck of cards, a silver bank or an ice cream flavor. One memory that comes to mind belongs to a day of no particular importance. It was late in the fall in Merced, California on the playground of my old elementary school; an overcast day with the wind blowing strong. I stood on the blacktop, pulling my hoodie over my ears. The wind was causing miniature tornados; we called them dirt devils, to swarm around me.


German Shepherd Dogs

Dogs are considered to be the worlds most common pet. In the course of human history, millions of domesticated dogs have been kept either as companions at homes or helpers in various needs. They are loved not simply on account of their unparalleled display of intelligence and perceived usefulness, but also because they are the kind of animals that are able to establish long-term relationships with man. As a matter of fact, mans fondness for dogs is something that manifests frequently. If one were to take a stroll at a park or jog on a beach, one is almost sure to find someone taking his or her pet dogs for a walk.

Memories from the Cabana

I was born and raised in South America, a continent with a lot of mountain rangesideal for mountain climbing and hiking-long winding rivers, lush forests, wonderful beaches, as well as valleys with breathtaking views. Based on experience, I can say that it is a tropical country; which was confirmed during my history class in sixth grade. In a country where its hot and humid, my fashion statement is sporting a large white (sometimes blue) t-shirt and a Hawaiian type shorts. A dark pair of shades is also an important part of my get-up as it protects my eyes from the suns harsh rays. Being born in South America you might think that I have dark hair with brown eyes and a charming smile; a typical Cabana boy.

"Under the Influence"
by Scott Russell Sanders How far a man could slide was gauged by observing our back-road neighbors--the out-of-work miners who had dragged their families to our corner of Ohio from the desolate hollows of Appalachia, the tightfisted farmers, the surly mechanics, the balked and broken men. There was, for example, whiskey-soaked Mr. Jenkins, who beat his wife and kids so hard we could hear their screams from the road. There was Mr. Lavo the wino, who fell asleep smoking time and again, until one night his disgusted wife bundled up the children and went outside and left him in his easy chair to burn; he awoke on his own, staggered out coughing into the yard, and pounded her flat while the children looked on and the shack turned to ash. There was the truck driver, Mr. Sampson, who tripped over his son's tricycle one night while drunk and got so mad that he jumped into his semi and drove away, shifting through the dozen gears, and never came back. We saw the bruised children of these fathers clump onto our school bus, we saw the abandoned children huddle in the pews at church, we saw the stunned and battered mothers begging for help at our doors.

The Sentimentalist by Lubby Juggins By nature, I'm a sentimental fool--a sucker for abandoned toys and homeless space aliens, widowers in Seattle with precocious sons and twitchy nightclub owners whose problems "don't amount to a hill of beans." Watching these tear-jerkers for the umpteenth time, I don't just sniffle mawkishly. I sob. I blubber. Rivulets of salty tears course down my puffy cheeks. Likewise, a corny Hallmark card (signed by the right person), a child's crayoned rendition of a grinning sun, even that cruelly manipulative origami commercial for Extra sugarfree gum--all, without warning, can melt my little cinder of a heart. Certain songs--even those that have been homogenized by the Mantovani Orchestra in a supermarket or an elevator--can induce gut-

lurching fits of nostalgia for places never visited and people scarcely known. Oh, I'm a sentimental fool, all right. But I've learned the hard way not to confuse sentimentality (a squishy kind of emotion that won't hold up under any kind of pressure) with genuine sensitivity. "Sentimentality," said hard-boiled novelist Norman Mailer, "is the emotional promiscuity of those who have no sentiment." It's a soft, seemingly innocuous vice, like humming in the office or munching cashews for breakfast. But for someone who still finds it hard to hug without discomfort and almost impossible to utter "I love you" convincingly, sentimentality is a sad little substitute for the real thing.

Social issues The great ideas of volunteering in libraries, limiting the lending period to ten days and charging people a dollar per book and giving local businesses tax incentives to contribute to a fund dedicated towards the maintenance of all the libraries are great but we want to contribute some changes into them. All these things are to be made components of a strong library system. If we take volunteering, for instance we propose to enter a benefit of 50% cost for lending a book and the cost should depend on the rarity of the book. Health Donating blood is a safe process while sterile needles and bags are applied to collect blood and therefore the infection spread to the donor impossible. Furthermore prior to donating, a donor is obliged to pass health history and physical history reviews.Blood donation is a voluntary process wherein volunteers provide their blood for a community supply.

Soledad Sarmiento Reyes (born 5 March 1946) is a distinguished and recognized

Philippine literature scholar, literary and art critic, author, anthologist, consultant, professor, instructor, editor, annotator, researcher, and essayist in the Philippines. Specializing in the field of popular culture and the arts in the Philippines, Reyes is a professor teaching interdisciplinary studies at the University of the Philippines and the Ateneo de Manila University. She is an accomplished author of books and anthologies.

Reyes authored works such as the Nobelang Tagalog, 1905-1975: Tradisyon at Modernismo ("Tagalog Novel, 1905-1975: Tradition and Modernism", 1982), The Romance Mode in Philippine Popular Literature and Other Essays (1991), Kritisismo: Mga Teorya at Antolohiya Para sa Epektibong Pagtuturo ng Panitikan ("Criticism, Theories and Anthologies for the Effective Teaching of Literature", 1992) and Pagbasa ng Panitikan at Kulturang Popular: Piling Sanaysay, 1976-1999 ("Reading Literature and Popular Culture, Selected Essay, 1976-1999). Among the anthologies Reyes edited were Katha ("Creation", 1992), Ang Silid na Mahiwaga: Kalipunan ng Kuwento't Tula ng mga Babaeng Manunulat ("The Mysterious Room: Compilation of Stories and Poems by Female Writers", 1994), and ALIW! Essays on Popular Culture (2000). In her 2009 essay, From Darna to Zsazsa Zaturnnah: Desire and Fantasy and Other Way, Reyes compared two Filipino superheroines existing in contemporary Philippine popular culture and literature, namely Darna and Zsazsa Zaturnnah. According to Reyes, Darna was the modern-day superheroine rooted and molded in Philippine folklore and tradition, while ZsaZsa Zaturnnah was "unarguably a postmodern text that could have emerged only in the twenty-first century, a period of awesome advances in science and technology, and/or frightening borderless wars." Reyes's use of the phrase postmodern hero or postmodern text to describe ZsaZsa Zaturnnah the superheroine and graphic novel was further explained by Emilou Lindsay Mata Mendoza and Irene Villarin Gonzaga in their Visual Literacy and Popular Culture in the Philippine Literature Classroom: Teaching Filipino Literature through the Graphic Novel, as a comparison between Darna, the female superhero, and ZsaZsa Zaturnnah, the effeminate superhero. Darna was the traditional mold of a Filipino superheroine (gender-wise, a true female superhero) while ZsaZsa Zaturnnah was an "outright subversion" of the conventional form of that superheroine. Because ZsaZsa Zaturnnah is, in reality, a homosexual male or "gay man" named Ada (from Adrian) who works as a beautician (i.e. cosmetologist, hair stylist, manicurist, and pedicurist), but is able to transform himself into "a voluptuous, red-haired Darna-like [real] woman who possesses super powers" whenever he swallows a magical stone and shouts the word "Zaturnnah". In short, ZsaZsa Zaturnnah is in reality a man who literally experiences a sex/gender change whenever he becomes the superheroine.

Alejandro Reyes Roces (13 July 1924 23 May 2011)

was a Filipino author, essayist, dramatist and a National Artist of the Philippines for literature. He served as Secretary of Education from 1961 to 1965, during the term of Philippine President Diosdado Macapagal. Noted for his short stories, the Manila-born Roces was married to Irene Yorston Viola (granddaughter of Maximo Viola), with whom he had a daughter, Elizabeth RocesPedrosa. Anding attended elementary and high school at the Ateneo de Manila University, before moving to the Arizona

State University for his tertiary education. He graduated with a B.A. in Fine Arts and, not long after, attained his M.A. from Far Eastern University back in the Philippines. He has since received honorary doctorates from Tokyo University, Baguio's St. Louis University, Polytechnic University of the Philippines, and the Ateneo de Manila University. Roces was a captain in the Markings Guerilla during World War II and a columnist in Philippine dailies such as the Manila Chronicle and the Manila Times. He was previously President of the Manila Bulletin and of the CAP College Foundation. In 2001, Roces was appointed as Chairman of the Movie and Television Review and Classification Board (MTRCB). Roces also became a member of the Board of Trustees of GSIS (Government Service Insurance System) and maintained a column in the Philippine Star called Roses and Thorns.

Literary works
During his freshman year in the University of Arizona, Roces won Best Short Story for We Filipinos are Mild Drinkers. Another of his stories, My Brothers Peculiar Chicken, was listed as Martha Foleys Best American Stories among the most distinctive for years 1948 and 1951. Roces did not only focus on short stories alone, as he also published books such as Of Cocks and Kites (1959), Fiesta (1980), and Something to Crow About (2005). Of Cocks and Kites earned him the reputation as the country's best writer of humorous stories. It also contained the widely anthologized piece My Brothers Peculiar Chicken. Fiesta, is a book of essays, featuring folk festivals such as Ermita's Bota Flores, Aklan's Ati-atihan, and Naga's Peafrancia. Something to Crow About, on the other hand, is a collection of Roces short stories. The book has been recently brought to life by a critically acclaimed play of the same title; the staged version of Something to Crow About is the first Filipino zarzuela in English. This modern zarzuela tells the story of a poor cockfighter named Kiko who, to his wife's chagrin, pays more attention to the roosters than to her. Later in the story, a conflict ensues between Kikos brother Leandro and Golem, the son of a wealthy and powerful man, over the affections of a beautiful woman named Luningning. The resolution? A cockfight, of course. Something to Crow About won the Aliw Award for Best Musical and Best Director for a Musical Production. It also had a run off-Broadway at the La Mama Theater in New York. Through the years, Roces has won numerous awards, including the Patnubay ng Sining at Kalinangan Award, the Diwa ng Lahi Award, the Tanging Parangal of the Gawad CCP Para sa Sining, and the Rizal Pro Patria Award. He was finally bestowed the honor as National Artist of Literature on the 25th of June 2003. When once asked for a piece of advice on becoming a famous literary figure Roces said, "You cannot be a great writer; first, you have to be a good person".


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