Saturday, March 28, 2015

Ernest Hemingway (1899 - 1961): Part I

*More Stuff Here

"A writer is always alone, always an outsider," Ernest Hemingway

Others said that of the many people he created in his books, Hemingway was his own best creation.

Ernest Hemingway was born in 1899 (eighteen ninety-nine). He grew up in Oak Park, Illinois, near the middle western City of Chicago. He was the second child in a family of six. His father was a doctor. His mother liked to paint and play the piano.

Each summer the family traveled to their holiday home in northern Michigan. Ernest's father taught him how to catch fish, hunt, set up a camp, and cook over a fire.

At home in Oak Park, Ernest wrote for his school newspaper. He tried to write like a famous sports writer of that time, Ring Lardner. He developed his writing skills this way.

In 1917 (nineteen seventeen), Hemingway decided not to go to a university. The United States had just entered World War One and he wanted to join the army. But the army rejected him because his eyesight (vision) was not good enough.

Ernest found a job with the Kansas City Star newspaper in Kansas City, Missouri. He reported news from the hospital, police headquarters, and the railroad station. One reporter remembered: "Hemingway liked to be where the action was. "

The Kansas City Star demanded that its reporters write short sentences. It wanted reporters to see the unusual details in an incident. Hemingway quickly learned to do both.

He worked for the newspaper only nine months before he joined the Red Cross to help on the battlefields of Europe. His job was to drive a Red Cross truck carrying wounded away from battle.

The Red Cross sent him to Italy. Soon he saw his first wounded when an arms factory in Milan exploded. Later, he was sent to the battle front. He went as close to the fighting as possible to see how he would act in the face of danger. Before long, he was seriously wounded.

The war ended soon after he healed. Hemingway returned to the United States. Less than a year had passed since he went to Europe. But in that short time he had changed forever. He needed to write about what he had seen.

Ernest Hemingway left home for Chicago to prove to himself, and to his family, that he could earn a living from his writing.

But, he ran out of money and began to write for a newspaper again. The Canadian newspaper, the Toronto Star, liked his reports about life in Chicago and paid him well.

In Chicago, Hemingway met the writer Sherwood Anderson. Anderson was one of the first writers in America to write about the lives of common people. Hemingway saw that Anderson's stories showed life as it really was, the way Hemingway was trying to do.

Anderson gave Hemingway advice about his writing. He told Hemingway to move to Paris, where living was less costly. He said Paris was full of young artists and writers from all over the world.

In return for Anderson's kindness Hemingway wrote a book called "The Torrents of Spring." It makes fun of Anderson and the way he wrote. There was something in Hemingway that could not say "thank you" to anyone. He had to believe he did everything for himself, even when he knew others helped him.

Hemingway decided to move to Paris. But before he did he married a woman he had recently met. Her name was Hadley Richardson.

Paris was cold and gray when Hemingway and his new wife arrived in 1921 (nineteen twenty-one). They lived in one of the poorer parts of the city. Their rooms were small and had no running water. But the Toronto Star employed him as its European reporter, so there was enough money for the two of them to live. And the job gave Hemingway time to write his stories.

Hemingway enjoyed exploring Paris, making new friends, learning French customs and sports. Some new friends were artists and writers who had come to Paris in the nineteen twenties. Among them were poet Ezra Pound, and writers Gertrude Stein, John dos Passos, and F. Scott Fitzgerald. They quickly saw that Hemingway was a good writer. They helped him publish his stories in the United States. He was thankful for their support at the time, but later denied that he had received help.

As a reporter, Hemingway traveled all over Europe. He wrote about politics. He wrote about peace conferences and border disputes. And he wrote about sports, skiing and fishing. Later he would write about bull fighting in Spain. The Toronto Star was pleased with his work, and wanted more of his reports. But Hemingway was busy with his own writing.

He said: "Sometimes, I would start a new story and could not get it going. Then I would stand and look out over the roofs of Paris and think. I would say to myself: 'All you have to do is write one true sentence. Write the truest sentence you know.' So finally, I would write a true sentence and go on from there. It was a wonderful feeling when I had worked well. "

Hemingway's first book of stories was called "In Our Time." It included a story called "Big Two-Hearted River," about the effect of war on a young man.

It tells about the young man taking a long fishing trip in Michigan. Hemingway had learned from his father when he was a boy about living in the wild.

The story is about two kinds of rivers. One is calm and clear. It is where the young man fishes. The other is dark. It is a swamp, a threatening place.

The story shows the young man trying to forget his past. He is also trying to forget the war. Yet he never really speaks about it. The reader learns about the young man, not because Hemingway tells us what the young man thinks, but because he shows the young man learning about himself.

"Big Two-Hearted River" is considered one of the best modern American stories. It is often published in collections of best writing.

After the book was published in nineteen twenty-five, Hadley and Hemingway returned to the United States for the birth of their son. They quickly returned to Paris.

Hemingway was working on a long story. He wanted to publish a novel so he would be recognized as a serious writer. And he wanted the money a novel would earn.

The novel was called "The Sun Also Rises." It is about young Americans in Europe after World War One. The war had destroyed their dreams. And it had given them nothing to replace those dreams. The writer Gertrude Stein later called these people members of "The Lost Generation. "

The book was an immediate success. At the age of twenty-five Ernest Hemingway was famous.

Many people, however, could not recognize Hemingway's art because they did not like what he wrote about. Hemingway's sentences were short, the way he had been taught to write at the Kansas City Star newspaper. He wrote about what he knew and felt. He used few descriptive words. His statements were clear and easily understood.

He had learned from earlier writers, like Ring Lardner and Sherwood Anderson. But Hemingway brought something new to his writing. He was able to paint in words what he saw and felt. In later books, sometimes he missed. Sometimes he even looked foolish. But when he was right he was almost perfect.

With the success of his novel, Hemingway became even more popular in Paris. Many people came to see him. One was an American woman, Pauline Pfeiffer. She became Hadley's friend. Then Pauline fell in love with Hemingway.

Hemingway and Pauline saw each other secretly. One time, they went away together on a short trip. Years later, Hemingway wrote about returning home after that trip: "When I saw Hadley again, I wished I had died before I ever loved anyone but her. She was smiling and the sun was on her lovely face. "

But the marriage was over. Ernest Hemingway and Hadley separated. She kept their son. He agreed to give her money he earned from his books.

In later years, he looked back at his marriage to Hadley as the happiest time of his life.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Ernest Hemingway: Part II

At twenty-five, Hemingway was living in Paris. He was a famous writer. But the end of his first marriage made him want to leave the place where he had first become famous.

Years later he said: "The city was never to be the same again. When I returned to it, I found it had changed as I had changed. Paris was never the same as when I was poor and very happy. "

Hemingway and his new wife returned to the United States in nineteen twenty-eight. They settled in Key West, an island with a fishing port near the southern coast of Florida.

Before leaving Paris, Hemingway sent a collection of his stories to New York to be published. The book of stories, called "Men Without Women," was published soon after Hemingway arrived in Key West.

One of the stories was called "The Killers." In it, Hemingway used a discussion between two men to create a feeling of tension and coming violence. This was a new method of telling a story

Nick opened the door and went into the room. Ole Andreson was lying on the bed with all his clothes on. He had been a heavyweight prizefighter and he was too long for the bed. He lay with his head on two pillows. He did not look at Nick.

"What was it?" he asked.

"I was up at Henry's," Nick said, "and two fellows came in and tied me up and the cook, and they said they were going to kill you. "

It sounded silly when he said it. Ole Andreson said nothing.
"They put us out in the kitchen," Nick went on. "They were going to shoot you when you came in to supper. "

Ole Andreson looked at the wall and did not say anything.

"George thought I ought to come and tell you about it. "

"There isn't anything I can do about it," Ole Andreson said.

Any new book by Hemingway was an important event for readers. But stories like "The Killers" shocked many people. Some thought there was too much violence in his stories. Others said he only wrote about gunmen, soldiers, fighters and drinkers.

This kind of criticism made Hemingway angry. He felt that writers should not be judged by those who could not write a story.

Hemingway was happy in Key West. In the morning he wrote, in the afternoon he fished, and at night he went to a public house and drank. One old fisherman said: "Hemingway was a man who talked slowly and very carefully. He asked a lot of questions. And he always wanted to get his information exactly right. "

Hemingway and his wife Pauline had a child in Key West. Soon afterward he heard that his father had killed himself. Hemingway was shocked. He said: "My father taught me so much. He was the only one I really cared about. "

When Hemingway returned to work there was a sadness about his writing that was not there before.
His new book told about an American soldier who served with the Italian army during
World War One. He meets an English nurse and they fall in love. They flee from the army, but she dies during childbirth. Some of the events are taken from Hemingway's service in Italy. The book is called "A Farewell to Arms."

Part of the book talks about the defeat of the Italian army at a place called Caporetto.

"At noon we were stuck in a muddy road about as nearly as we could figure, ten kilometres from Udine. The rain had stopped during the forenoon and three times we had heard planes coming, seen them pass overhead, watched them go far to the left and heard them bombing on the main highroad. . . .

"Later we were on a road that led to a river. There was a long line of abandoned trucks and carts on a road leading up to a bridge. No one was in sight. The river was high and the bridge had been blown up in the center; the stone arch was fallen into the river and the brown water was going over it. We went up the bank looking for a place to cross. . . . We did not see any troops; only abandoned trucks and stores. Along the river bank was nothing and no one but the wet brush and muddy ground. "

"A Farewell to Arms" was very successful. It earned Hemingway a great deal of money. And it permitted him to travel. One place he visited was Spain, a country that he loved. He said: "I want to paint with words all the sights and sounds and smells of Spain. And if I can write any of it down truly, then it will represent all of Spain."

A book called "Death in the Afternoon" was the result. It describes the Spanish tradition of bull fighting. Hemingway believed that bull fighting was an art, just as much as writing was an art. And he believed it was a true test of a man's bravery, something that always concerned him.

Hemingway also traveled to Africa. He had been asked to write a series of reports about African hunting. He said: "Hunting in Africa is the kind of hunting I like. No riding in cars, just simple walking and feeling the grass under my feet. "

The trip to Africa resulted in a book called "The Green Hills of Africa" and a number of stories. One story is among Hemingway's best. He said a writer saves some stories to write when he knows enough to write them well.

The story is called "The Snows of Kilimanjaro." It tells of Hemingway's fears about himself. It is about a writer who betrays his art for money and is unable to remain true to himself.

In nineteen thirty-six, the Civil War in Spain gave him a chance to return to Spain and test his bravery again. He agreed to write about the war for an American news organization.

It was a dangerous job. One day, Hemingway and two other reporters were driving a car near a battlefield. The car carried two white flags. But rebel gunners thought the car was carrying enemy officers. Hemingway was almost killed. He said: "Shells are all the same. If they do not hit you, there is no story. If they do hit you, then you do not have to write it. "

The trip to Spain resulted in two works, a play called "The Fifth Column" and the novel "For Whom the Bell Tolls." The novel tells the story of an American who has chosen to fight against the fascists. He realizes that there are lies and injustice on his side, as well as the other. But he sees no hope except the victory of his side. During the fighting, he escapes his fear of death and of being alone. He finds that "he can live as full a life in seventy hours as in seventy years. "

The book was a great success. Hemingway enjoyed being famous. His second marriage was ending. He divorced Pauline and married reporter Martha Gellhorn. He had met Martha while they were working in Spain. They decided to live in Cuba, near the city of Havana. Their house looked out over the Caribbean Sea.

But this marriage did not last long. Hemingway was changing. He began to feel that whatever he said was right. Martha went on long trips to be away from him. He drank heavily to forget his loneliness.

When America entered World War Two, Hemingway went to Britain as a reporter. Later he took part in the invasion of Europe and the freeing of Paris.

During the war Hemingway met another reporter, Mary Walsh. In nineteen forty-five, when his marriage to Martha was legally over, he married Mary.

After the war, Hemingway began work on his last important book, "The Old Man and the Sea." It is the story of a Cuban fisherman who refuses to be defeated by nature.

Hemingway said: "I was trying to show the experience of the fisherman so exactly and directly that it became part of the reader's experience. "

In nineteen fifty-four, Hemingway won the Nobel Prize for literature. But he was too sick to take part in the ceremony.

Ernest Hemingway was sixty years old, but he said he felt like he was eighty-six. And, even worse, he felt that he no longer was able to write. He seemed to be living the story about the writer who had sold his writing skill in order to make money.

In nineteen sixty-one Ernest Hemingway killed himself. Among the papers he left was one that described what he liked best:

"To stay in places and to leave. . . to trust, to distrust. . . to no longer believe and believe again. . . to watch the changes in the seasons. . . to be out in boats. . . to watch the snow come, to watch it go. . . to hear the rain. . . and to know where I can find what I want. "

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Chris and the Biggest Firecracker in the World

Chris Griffin is a boy who lives in Valencia. Chris was born in Valencia in 2000. He is 15 years old. He likes to play football. Chris is very tall. He is the tallest boy in his class.

He has one brother and one sister. His little brother is called Stewie and his sister is called Meg. Stewie is a baby. He is three years old. Meg is 14. 
The Griffins have a dog. His name is Brian. Brian is very smart. Brian can read. He can talk. He can drive a car.He is a very intelligent dog. Do you have a pet?
His family lives in Ruzafa. Chris goes to school near his house. He lives three blocks from his school. Meg goes to the same school as Chris but she is in a different class. 

Chris walks to school or he rides his bike. Some of his friends take the bus to school. They live far from the school. Do you walk to school? 

Do you live near or far from your school? How many blocks do you live from your school? 

Do you ride a donkey to school? Do you have a donkey?Why don't you have a donkey? Donkeys are fun. 


Do you like firecrackers?
Firecrackers are fun. Firecrackers are very loud. Firecrackers make a lot of noise. Do you like a lot of noise? Planes are very noisy. Motorcycles are noisy, too. 
Chris is sad because he doesn't have any firecrackers. Firecrackers are expensive and Chris doesn't have any money. He can't buy firecrackers. He is bored. He wants to have fun but he doesn't have ay money to buy firecrackers. What can Chris do? 

What does Chris have in his bedroom? Who is in the bedroom with Chris? 
Chris and his family go to a restaurant for dinner. Chris likes to have dinner in restaurants. The Griffins go to a restaurant once or twice a week. 
Chris goes to McBurgertown. It is a fast food restaurant. McDonald's and Burger King are fast food restaurants. Do you like Burger King?

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Where are they?

Where is the  boy? Is the boy at school?
 Where is the cat? Why is the cat in the fridge? What is he doing? Why is the cat sleeping in the fridge? Is it hot?
 Where is the fox?
 The birds are over the trees. The birds are flying over the trees.
 The cat is playing in the box. Cats like to play in boxes?
 Where is the dog? Where is the cat? Is the cat in the house? Is the dog on top of the house?
 Where are the children? Why are they inside? Why are the children in the house?
 Not again! The stupid cat is in the fridge again. The cat likes to hide in the fridge.
 Where are the dishes? Where are the cups? The dishes and the cups are in the sink.
 Where is the train? Is it a big train or a little train?
The dog is very tired. He sleeps under the table.