Put Your Devices Down for This Trip into Reality


How many moments have you been in class to busy spending time on your laptop no paying attention to your professor?  One article says this “I’ve walked in the back of the classroom of many of my colleagues and seen that perhaps 50% of students are on the web” (Strauss). This means half of the class is not even paying attention to what the teacher or professor are saying.  The same article goes on to say about how students think I only do one thing and then snap back into listening and in reality, they do not realize how much they are losing information during that few minutes. In my English class, we were not allowed to have the laptop or phone out unless she advised us to or during the break. She also said “No eBooks” which now is unusual all my books but for two our eBooks. Some people hate physical books and say this, “Print book lovers are nostalgic, impractical fools who need to rely on a physical object to make sure everyone knows how smart and culture they are” (Scott). I personally enjoy paper books better than eBooks for multiple reasons. I enjoy being able to mark and make notes on my pages which I always been told that is because of my learning disability. Through this class, I thought it was going to be a struggle to not type all my notes because I type faster than I write. Here is my journey of not using my devices during class.

The first thing we did in this class was mailing letters. This was different because everyone I talk to me either email, text or call them. The only mail I ever received was cards from my grandparents or packages from things I order or things my mom sent me. I never got “letters” this was weird to me. I did not even know how to buy a stamp or how much stamps where. I did some research on how much stamps were when I was born in 1997. On the website of priceofstamps.com did not have 1997 but they had 1995 and 1999. In 1995 stamps costed twenty-nine cents and 1999 stamps costed thirty-three cents (lasr467). Now a stamp in 2018 cost you fifty cent says stamps.com that is one cent more than 2017 (Service). This difference is not much in cents if you think about it but if you could not communicate through email, text or phone call imagine how many texts you send an image that how many letters you send a month.  “[T]he average teenager sends more than 3,000 texts per month. That’s more than 6 texts per waking hour” (Parr). If you do the math for one month that would cost you 1,500 dollars a month to send 3000 text messages. If you want to know how many it would be for one day 6 text messages an hour every waking hour which let’s say 12 hours half a day would be 72 text messages a day which would cost you 36 dollars. That would be a lot of money considering the average phone bill is according to Quicken.com says that “[A]verage cell phone bill in the U.S. runs about $50 to $60 dollars a month” (Inc).

Most books and textbooks are online now, Which I do not like because I want to be able to highlight and make notes on it and have it physically in front me where I do not get distracted. Study on CBS proves what I am saying is true, “[W]here people were given a short story to read either on a Kindle or in a paperback book; when they were quizzed later, those who read the paperback were more likely to remember plot points in the right order” (Kraft). This I believe is true because all kindle books I do not remember what I have read. I tested this theory when we had to journals entry for articles. With the ones, I printed out I remember more and could write more in detail about but ones, I read from my screen I could not. I have a hard time finding books I like to read most books I do enjoy are young adult books.  One the article we read this semester about young adult fiction talked about how you could go different places with a good book this quote sums it up for me:” [L]iterature to sink into a reality different than their own.” (Kitchener). The first stop of this imagination to get away from reality is we went back to 1982 we are in England, we are watching two girls compare their colors to each other and noticing that their shade is the same. These two girls we will watch them grow up to try to be a dancer. Tracy was only one who to become a professional dancer but was tragically ruined because of pregnancy. The main girl who never named tries to have a good life and travels with pop star all way to Africa. They were trying to help small tribe get more developed school. During this book your reality you see how times were back then and how felt to be poor and how feels to be a different culture. One quote that hits home that back then cultures where judge so much if you were not white, “At the time we were “Black and Asian,” we ticked the Black and Asian box on the medical form, joined the Black and Asian family support group and stuck to the Black and Asian section of the library” (Smith 82).This made think that there had been something going on if there was a family support group for Asian and Black. They even had only one section of the library why could they not be in the whole library. There was word back then that one-character use “Paki” is supposed to be a very offensive word to their race and for Tracy to say that offended the narrator mother because Tracy was also mixed but not with Asian but with white. If wondering what can take you to all the places in one book it is Swing Time by Zadie Smith. Finally, our last destination that my favorite of all time is back to nice Asheville North Carolina. For someone not from North Carolina I had to do some research for the place in Asheville. The Ashville site says this: “[B]iltmore Estate is the result of the combined creative talents and vision of all three men- Vanderbilt, Hunt, and Olmsted” (Ashville). Why you might want to know this is because this is a key setting of this mystery. The mystery we are trying solve you will soon find out. Mr. Vanderbilt had people from all over come to him an amazing house. Everything is a dream for everyone stays there even the mystery girl that lives in the basement. Until one day kids start disappearing one by one just vanishing into thin air. If you’re wondering what mystery novel that can keep you on edge of your seat like this one can its Serafina and The Black Clock.

In writing, we had to do longhand first which I haven’t done in years. I found some pros of the writing long handed. I was able to keep all my thoughts in one place and was able to edit and make sure everything was in one place. I was able to write it out change it as much and I could not see all the paper on the computer but on paper, I can. Before this class, I never longhand or even edited my papers after I type them. After we started to edit our workshop essays I started to print them out and do that with all my essays. This help complete one step that is supposed to be an important step in writing which is proofreading, incomplete sentence, redundant phrases, the obvious misspelling is common errors that can be caught during proofreading step.

In conclusion, this journey was a real wake up call for me. It made me realize how much I do not pay attention in class and how much I depend on my devices. This class has taught me their time to use your device and time you’re not. I also learn some good apps for my computer to keep me on task while using my laptop. One app is called self-control this app lets you block all certain website for set amount time so you can get your work done. Perks of this app is even if you delete the app or turn your computer off you will not allow being one them site until the time is up. One I am actually using is Stay Focused it is through google chrome and free and also blocks sites like Stay Focus does but this one also you set start time so if you want start assignment at seven it will turn that website off at seven until the timer is done. Unlike self-control, it does not show you the timer.

Works Cited

Ashville, Romantic. Biltmore Estate & George Vanderbilt History. 2016.

Beatty, Robert. Serafina and the Black Cloak . New York: Disney, 2016.

Inc, Quicken. Home Budget:Cost-of-living reality check. 2018. <https://www.quicken.com/home-budget-cost-living-reality-check&gt;.

Kitchener, Carolina. Why so Many Adult Love Young-Adult Literature. 1 December 2017.

lasr467. History of The Price of a Stamp. 27 February 2013. <http://priceofastamp.com/history-of-the-price-of-a-stamp/&gt;.

Parr, Ben. The average teenager send 3,339 text per month [stats]. 14 October 2010.

Richtel, Matt. The New York Times. 20 January 2012.

Scott, Ellen. Ebooks or Paperbacks? A kindle reader and a book lover fight it out. 27 April 2017.

Service, The United Postal. Postal Rate Increase. 21 January 2018. <https://www.stamps.com/usps/postage-rate-increase/&gt;.

Smith, Zadie. Swing Time. New York: Penguin Press, 2016.

Strauss, Valetie. How distracting are laptop in class? 20 August 2013.


Beatty, Robert. Serafina and the Black Cloak . New York: Disney, 2016.

Serafina and The Black Clock by Robert Beatty are about Serafina and girl who lives in the Biltmore houses basement with her pa. Her pa works for the house but no one knows that they live there. She stays hidden from the owner and everyone in the house. She fits into small spaces to keep away. She one night see something that will change her life and she has to try to solve what is truly happening.

Kitchener, Carolina. Why so Many Adult Love Young-Adult Literature. 1 December 2017.

Carolina Kitchener in her article Why so Many Adults Love Young-Adult Literature talks about different traits of YA literature. How it is relatable in so many ways. That does not just cover one genre it covers multiple genres in one. It also talks about how Harry Potter was really the first young adult book that sky rocketed into the stores.

Lucas, Jane. “Peeling Away the window Dressing of History.” 26 September 2917.

In Jane Lucas blog post of “Peeling away the Window Dressing of History” Is based on a chapter of a book called The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead.  It is talking about how Cora the main character of the book is working at the museum as a reenactment of a slave. How it was not fully the truth.

Richtel, Matt. “Blogs vs Term Papers”. 20 January 2012.

Matt Richtel article Blog vs Term Papers is comparing the two which should be final of a course. Also, what the pros and cons of each. Also how some English professors get bashed for even thinking about not doing a final term paper and just allowing the blogs. How blog express more of writing while term paper is not about the content but the style

Smith, Zadie. Swing Time. New York: Penguin Press, 2016.

Zadie Smith Story Swing Time is about two mixed girls who love to dance. They face challenges along the way with family issues and issues between each other. They are both extremely jealous and will go to outrages steps out there way to ruin each other’s life. They both try to beat each other and only one gets follow her dreams of dancing while the other one works for a pop star. Twenge, Jean M. Have Smartphone Destroyed a Generation. September 2017.

In Have Smartphones Destroyed a Generation Jean M. Twenge talks about how much people got a phone and how much time they spend on the phone. They also talk how times use to be without phones how a family actually use to spend time with each other now they just text each other. It also talks about how people use to be before phone. They also talk about how it affects us emotionally and mentally. It also talks about how our generations are becoming adults too soon and not growing up completely. They have different behaviors then what the other generations had.


Is it internal or external?

29680682_1298297406939081_1208666327_oSwing Time by Zadie Smith is about two girls who love to dance. The narrator faces some difficult things in her life including a toxic friendship that might ruin her life. “[W]ere not friends or enemies or even acquaintances” (16).  The narrator probably wishes this was true and never became friends with the toxic, lying, and condescending character Tracy. Are Tracy bad traits caused by external problems caused by the need for attention? Or is there something internal that she never got diagnosed with. At first, we think that she is a just spoiled brat that just wants attention. “Tracy shut her mouth, stuck her nose in the air and crossed the room to ask her mother for her ballet shoes” (17). During the story you can tell she controls pretty much anyone she comes into contact with and you feel more as she just spoiled and never had any house training, for example, she had no respect for the narrator mother, “She was laughing at my mother-it was liberating. I had never imagined my mother could or should be a figure of fun, and yet Tracy found everything about her ridiculous: the way she spoke to us with respect as if we were adults giving us choices about things Tracey felt we had no business at all in choosing” (62).As you read you start to feel bad for Tracy and see maybe that the external things that happened during her rough life caused some internal disorders.  The main reason for why readers believe this is because of, “Tracy, because of her dyslexia- though we didn’t know to call it that at the time-preferred to dictate, while I struggled to keep up with the naturally melodramatic, while I struggle to keep up with melodramatic twist and turns of her mind.” (32). Learning disabilities have something to do with mental illness. “[A]pproximatley 36% of children with a learning disability also report having a psychiatric disorder.” (Mental Health- research and statistics). This not only raises Tracy factor of having mental illness either, “Opposite St. Christopher’s stood a high-rise estate of poor reputation, and this was where Tracy lived” (12). This has to do with people in poverty cannot get proper help, “31 percent of Americans under the U.S. Census Bureau’s poverty threshold in 2011 has been diagnosed with [a] disorder” (Abrams).

People say all the time “Oh she or he bipolar” and they really do not know what that means or signs of bipolar disorder. The U.S Department of health says bipolar disorder is,“[A] brain disorder that causes unusual shifts in mood, energy and activity levels” (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services 1). In the story the narrator says this that this would happen randomly, “Tracy went into standby mode, pausing herself like a videotape.” (115). The U.S Department of health also says Bipolar disorder come from multiple things but one big way that people get is “Children with a parent or sibling who has bipolar disorder are much more likely to develop the illness” (3). This means Tracy could have got it for her mother or father. Some reason reader might feel like Tracy has bipolar disorder is because of some the things she does in the book. “Tracy went straight to her bed, got in it and began playing Pac-an. She wouldn’t look at me. It was clear I couldn’t ask her anything, not even if Louie was the name of her father. I stood where her mother had left me and waited” (40).This example shows that she does not care. Shows her mood change to not caring from being sweet and cheerful in previous pages talking about her dad. Now if it was him she did not care to have anything to do with him. “Second row, in the end, on the right,” replied Tracy without missing a beat” (38). In this one, she was proud of seeing her dad and you would think she would die to see him. Some signs of bipolar disorder that is told is “Acting recklessly without thinking about the consequences” (Smith and Segal 2). We see Tracy see this a lot during the book one-part book feel like highlight just how reckless she can be. This part of the story is from Lilly’s Bingham birthday party and is after they went and saw The Jungle Book.

‘Yeah he does’, I called back ‘He looks just like the boy Kurshed in our class.’ Lily’s mother took an exaggerated interest, she turned her head right round as we paused at a traffic light. ‘Perhaps his parents are from India.’ ‘Nah’ said Tracy casually, looking away, out of the window. ‘Kurshed’s a Paki.’ (78).

This is reckless because she is also mix race. This isn’t the only time she does something reckless the next part of the story is when she sets the narrator up by two boys. It was previously a game that the kids where playing. The game was when being little boys going around chasing girls and putting their fingers up the girl’s skirts. This part the narrator is in music room getting music sheets and two boys one with eczema and kid they said was mental slow. “[A]nd it was clear that this wasn’t the playground game or the classroom game, it was a new and perhaps dangerous escalation” (69).  After this, the narrator is saved by Tracy. The narrator sees this as she walks with her dad on way to home, “I heard a lot of noise and looked across and saw Tracy and the boy with eczema and the one we called Spaz laughing and fighting and messing with each other” (70). As this book shows that Tracy more than likely set the narrator up then felt bad and saved her. This would be a part bipolar disorder because she wanted to harm the narrator and was not thinking then she felt guilty and changed her mind.

The next mental illness that I believe Tracy has is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. The Nation Institute of Mental Health says “PTSD is a disorder that develops in some people have experienced a shocking, scary, or dangerous event” (Human 1). The first example of PSTD is from where the girls are playing with this baby doll. “Tracy gave me to say I sometimes heard odd, discomfiting echoes of her own home life, or else of the many soaps she watched, I couldn’t be sure. “Your turn. Say:’You slag-she ain’t my kid! Is it my fault if she pisses’erself?’ (29-30). This is a sign of PTSD, National Institute of Mental Health says one the symptoms of PSTD is, “The symptoms can start from the person’s own thoughts and feelings. Words, objects, or situation that are reminders of the even” (Human 2). I do not think this what caused her PTSD though. Other things that are said in Swing time made it seem like she was abused in different was. This part the narrator is out by herself and sees a crowd and hears yelling. “The bald girl became less aggressive, more solicitous, and in the same moment I realized the women was not a woman but a girl and I knew her: Tracy, I ran up to her/ She recognized me but couldn’t speak, she only reached out and smiled sadly. Her nose was bleeding, both nostrils” (232). We do not know what happen to her to gets the bloody nose we can only imagine what had happened to her. This I do not think caused her PTSD. There is part of the book where the narrator walks in the flat and just Louie and Tracey. Tracey is nowhere be seen but when the narrator sees her she see this, “At the same moment she looked quickly down at herself at the same spot I was looking at, straightening her crop top until it once again fully covered her bra” (264). I think what caused her PTSD is from these items.  It is highly likely she was raped by him or raped more than once, “30-40% of victims are abused by a family member” (darnesstolight.org).

Another mental illness that she has is pathological lying. Psychiatric Times says that Pathological lying is, “PL is characterized by a long history (maybe lifelong of frequent and repeated lying for which no apparent psychological motive or external benefit can be discerned” (Dike).  During Swing Time, Tracy does this more than anything. The first lie Tracy tells us that her dad is part of Michael Jackson’s back up dancers. She even made up where he is at, ‘Second row, in the end, on the right’ (38). We find out she lying by this because, later in the story, the narrator mom says, “I didn’t know Tracy’s father had gone to prison. It was my mother who told me, a few months after the fact: ‘I see he’s gone in again’ (115). Another lie she tells is about the narrator. The narrator likes old-timey music which Tracy hates so the narrator hangs out with the piano teacher Mr. Booth. The lie Tracy says is, ‘Likes old buggers too’ (120). Referring that Mr. Booth and the narrator is having a romantic relationship. Another thing Tracy does is that another reason she is a Pathological liar is that she post a video of them from Lilly’s birthday where they are dancing erotically to Aimee’s song. Tracy stole the tape without Lilly’s mom using it. The narrator never thought that she would use it. “Now she has achieved the same effect with my life, placing the beginning of the story at an earlier point so that all that came after read as the twisted consequence of a lifelong obsession” (438). Another big lie she does is when she is trying out for dance school. Tracy mom brings the tape of her dance to the narrator and her family. Tracy mother says it was very original and that the judges loved it. As the narrator watches it she notices this, “The song was “Swing Is Here to Stay” and every movement, every blink, every nod, was Jeni LeGon’s” (213). Tracy or Louie her dad had taken a cash box that Tracy was in charge of during a dance recital. When Miss Isabell confronts them Tracy accuses Mr. Booth of making sexual thing she did not want to do. We find out this is a lie because the narrator says this, “I made it as clear as I could that Mr. Booth had never laid a hand on me or on Tracey, nor anyone else, as far as I knew” (282). We assume it a lie because during all this Mr. Booth never made a gesture toward the narrator who spent a lot of time with him. We can assume that Tracy was talking about the time her dad sexual assaulted her.

After a strangely long pause, Louie answered. I was surprised: er seemed to have surprised each other. He wiped some sweat from above his must above his mustache and asked me gruffly what I wanted. Before I could answer I heard Tracy, in a funny sort of voice- I almost didn’t recognize it-shouting at her father to let me in, and Louie nodded and let me pass, but walked the other way, straight out of the door and along the corridor. I watched him hurry down the stairs, across the lawn. I turned back into the flat, but Tracey was not in the hall, and then not in the living room and then not in the kitchen: I had the feeling she was leaving each room a moment before I reached it. I found her in the bathroom. I would have said she had been recently crying, but I cant be sure, I said hello. At the same moment, she looked quickly down at herself at the same spot I was looking at, straightening her crop top until it once again fully covered her bra (264).

Most her lies she tells do not help her it just causes others pain another example is, She sent the narrator a letter saying this, “There she saw my father, naked, on top of something, moving up and down, and at first she had naturally thought it was a woman, and if it had been a woman or so she assured me, then she never would have mentioned it, it was none of her business or mine, but the fact was it was not a women at all, it was a doll, human-sized, but inflated, and of very dark-complexioned- “like a golliwog,” she wrote- with a crescent of synthetic lab’s-wool hair and huge pair of bright red lips, red as blood” (350).  We never know if it truly a lie or not but with her history we can assume it is. If it the truth how does this benefit her in any way? It just harms the narrator and tears her apart from her dad. Which might be what Tracy wanted because she was not close with her dad.

In conclusion, Tracy life might take a toll on her. It might cause three server mental illnesses bipolar disorder, post-trauma stress disorder, and pathological lying. These may have caused her to look like she is looking for attention but in reality this how her brain is working and she dealing with coping. Each of these diseases could have been treated if Tracey could get the medical treatments. This way we know she could not afford treatment, “In a few years Tracey would be pregnant, according to my mother, and so would drop out of school, and the “cycle of poverty” (166). This would mean they probably did not have good health care or any at all. Also, her mom spent a lot of money on this, ‘[D]own the high road,’ said my mother- which meant ‘drinking’ (64). Which means her mom probably spent most of her money on this.  Each disorder could have been treated either by medicine or therapy.







Works Cited

Abrams, Lindsay. Study: People living in poverty. 31 October 2012. <https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2012/10/study-people-living-in-poverty-are-twice-as-likely-to-be-depressed/264320/&gt;.

darnesstolight.org. Child Sexual Abuse Statics. n.d. <http://chauciesplace.org/child-sexual-abuse-statistics&gt;.

Dike, Charles C. Pathological Lying: Symptom or Disease. 1 June 2008. <http://www.psychiatrictimes.com/addiction/pathological-lying-symptom-or-disease&gt;.

Human, U.S. Department of Health and. PTSD. Febuary 2016. <https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/post-traumatic-stress-disorder-ptsd/index.shtml&gt;.

Mental Health- research and statistics. n.d. <https://www.mencap.org.uk/learning-disability-explained/research-and-statistics/health-research-and-statistics/mental-health&gt;.

Smith, Melinda and Jeanne Segal. Bipolar Disorder Signs and Symptoms. February 2018. <https://www.helpguide.org/articles/bipolar-disorder/bipolar-disorder-signs-and-symptoms.htm&gt;.

Smith, Zadie. Swing Time. pENGUIN, 2016. 2017.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Mental Health. Bipolar Disorder. April 2016. <https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/bipolar-disorder/index.shtml&gt;.


Anne Richardson
625 7th ave ne LR box 776
Hickory Nc 28601
258 Quail trail
Weogufka Al 35832

Computer (Certified in Microsoft), Multitasking, Prioritizing

Experience Central Latino / Tutor
Septemeber 2017 – PRESENT, Hickory North Carolina

Resume for english

Places I have traveled

I have visited multiple places because I moved a lot when I was younger. I am originally from Virginia and still go back and visit there because I moved from there when I was in the 2nd grade and move to Alabama. I have visited Ohio where my sister currently lives. I have been to Mississippi where my Grandparents live. Some places I have visit that did not have family that lived in that state is Florida. I went with my family because my Aunt is in charge of business called Mystery Shopping she holds conferences and sometimes I am able to go.She always lets me and my cousin do something fun while we are together because we are not together often. That time she let us, Disney, I have also gone to different parts of Florida. I went to Florida one more time with my boyfriend for his senior trip. I have also been for my birthday one year went to Georgia and went to the Coke a Cola Factory. I also went to New Orleans with my aunt for another Mystery Shopping conference.  I also have been to Kentucky. I have also visited parts of North Carolina. I have never been here before last year. My boyfriend moved up here for work and I got to visit North Carolina also.