Santa Monica

Courtyard in Santa Monica

Santa Monica by Savage Garden was one of my favorite songs by the group while growing up in rural Colorado. It made me imagine myself dressed in high fashion, thin, and shopping in expensive stores. This song is of a man living in Santa Monica. This song is very real to a lot of us who have the dream of fitting in, or being part of the “in crowd. The person in the song is lonely, and feels out of place.  Everyone around him is physically perfect and appealing.  Because he doesn’t fit in, he is sad, lonely and depressed. Many of us feel like this, even those not living in California.  But the difference is, California is all about looks.  You have to have nice cars, nice clothes, nice face, nice body, etc. If you are not able to accomplish all of this, you not only will feel out of place, you will also be made to feel that you don’t belong. Image is everything, and many people will go into debt just trying to be a part of the California image. The styles and fads most oftentimes begin in California, and are slowly integrated into the styles of everyone throughout the states, and even the world. The image people create, “have added an unmistakable glamour to the image of the Golden State.” (Rawls, 143)

Santa Monica Savage Garden (1997)

Rawls, James A. “California: A People, A Place, A Dream.” California: A People, A Place, A
Dream. Eds. Claudia K. Jurmain and James J. Rawls. San Francisco: Chronicle Books,
1986. 141-151. Print.

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Posted by on June 1, 2011 in Uncategorized


The dream of having a nice car

Cars from Fast and Furious

California is all about image, best cars, best bodies, etc. You don’t fit in here in California if you don’t have a nice car. People judge you on your looks and the kind of car you drive. If you pull up in a Nissan Sentra at the store, people stare at you, and then lock their doors. But if you pull up in your brother in laws’ Porsche Cayenne, you get stares of envy from people all around. And you practically get the red carpet treatment. In the very beginning of the movie Fast and the Furious, when everyone’s cars are lined up, and people are comparing each other’s cars. Those who have the fastest car are treated like a god with people singing their praise all around. This is a prime example of the image one’s car gives that person. That person can treat people badly, and it has no effect on anyone because that person has a nice car, and they don’t want to be cast out because they spoke against him/her. Mr. Carl David mentions this in a similar way he talks about the automobile at first gave people freedom they never had, then became the center of attention, resulting in a lot of wasted time.  There are better things people could be doing with their time, instead, they spend the majority of it cleaning, and maintaining their cars to ensure if anyone sees them, their car is at its utmost best.  That person could be unemployed, but it is for the most part overlooked as long as he has a decent car. But put that same person in a 1980 Nissan Sentra, he is then seen as a loser, and no one will talk to them

Carle, David. Water and the California Dream: Choices for the New Millennium.
San Francisco: Sierra Club Books, 2000. Print.

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Posted by on June 1, 2011 in Uncategorized


Jennifer’s Blog Portfolio

The following 5 post represent a good variety of California Dream writings from throughout the semester. As I went through the earlier post I could see that I had developed my skills in regards to analysis of assigned readings, bringing out relevant details and sentence variety. I felt that my best post was the Dream of Growth in California. I felt that I choose a very relevant picture that connected very well to the readings. I also pulled out details in the image that successfully tied it all together. This class provided me with the basic skills I will be able to implement in all my future writings. I will definitely never read any article the same again finding it hard not to apply analytical reading skills.

With the California dream of growth I improved this paragraph by tying in more of the assigned reading by relating it to my photograph. I used more details from the photograph to further argue the paradoxes surrounding the dream of growth.

The dream of leisure in California; The picture I found for this post was so inspiring that I didn’t need to elaborate too much more on the details. I worked on connecting the details to the readings to make it more cohesive.
For the California dream of trying to belong, this post was fairly early on so I had to work on the sentence variety and add many more details to make it a thoughtful post.
California Dream vs. Reality; This post was personally very interesting to me but I didn’t have very many examples from the readings so I looked for additional connections to add.
For my post the dream of striking it rich in California I added more details here on how this particular dream was a myth and brought many men to California under false pretenses. I added more descriptive verbs to the sentence in order to convey my point of view.
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Posted by on June 1, 2011 in Uncategorized


Blog for final

The dream of having a nice car

This original posting was incomplete, and lacking substance.  I made my argument more clear, added substance, and corrected grammar issues, as well as added a link to images of cars from the movie Fast and Furious.


Santa Monica

My dream was a little fuzzy, as was the details and interpretation of the song.  I also added better descriptions that made sense, rather than sounding like a bunch of “mumbo jumbo”. I added a nice image of a courtyard in Santa Monica, via a link. I was unable to find a way to make it appear in the post directly.


The Rite Spot

I was confused, when I first created this post, about the definition of arcadia and utopia.  Once I had a better grasp on that, I was able to make my blog make sense.


Home is where the heart is

This being my first post, I had to basically rewrite the whole thing, plus find an image to go with my post.  I was able to find a nice image of a coastal view from the living room.  I also changed the whole post to go along with my new dream, which was much more detailed, and understandable than the first.


The Rite Spot was my official favorite, because it is a great reminder that many people’s dreams do come true, as long as they put effort behind making them happen.  I was able to portray my image well, and tie my dream to it efficiently.

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Posted by on June 1, 2011 in Uncategorized


John’s Portfolio

I feel I have learned a lot in English 100 this semester. Even though it wasn’t my first attempt at this class I learned some new techniques with which I had not been familiar.  The sentence variety handout comes to mind, as well as subordination techniques. I believe I will carry these tools with me in whatever I write from this point forward.

The dream of Racial Equality

As this post was almost 250 words I did not have to to much in the way of adding to it. Most of the editing involved style and concision.

The Dream of a Better Social Life

In this post the most significant change was adding a quote from Allmendinger and responding to that quote.

The Dream of Arcadia

I feel this is my strongest post. I added a quote from McClung and I feel that this post has some good stylistic qualities

The Dream of a Traffic-Free Commute

The original post was my shortest of the four. I had to add much in the way of how I relate to the scene. I also believe I incorporate the quote better throughout the paragraph.




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Posted by on May 29, 2011 in Uncategorized


Racial Equality

The Rodney King riots of L.A. in 1992 showed that, in spite of the vast array of races and cultures in southern California, the dream of racial harmony remains a long way off. Much of this chasm between dream and reality can be attributed to the relationship between the L.A.P.D. and the long-oppressed Los Angeles minorities. Few songs address this divide better than The Day the N*ggaz Took Over, by Dr. Dre. The day King’s badge-and-baton-wielding attackers were acquitted sparked the 20th century’s worst American urban riots. Many saw the acquittal as simply a reason to loot, as Dre alludes to when he’s “got a VCR in the back of my car.” At its root, however, the riots were the volcanic release of pent-up rage directed at, specifically, the mostly Caucasian LAPD. Police in L.A. have had a well-documented history of brutality over the years. In the 1940′s they made efforts to ensure racial segregation by such methods as preventing a Benny Goodman performance because they “feared interracial dancing among the band’s white, Filipino, black, and Mexican fans”(Lipsitz 164). L.A. and California as a whole would do well to learn from its racially diverse music scene. It incorporates music from half a world away, like the Philippine folk music Kulintang, and Samoan via Tokyo hip-hop (Lipsitz 166).The music of Dr. Dre fits right in as part of this California mosaic. Then again, the answer to the discord may lie in the words of that cocaine-addict-turned-marytr Rodney King: “Can’t we all just get along?”

Lipsitz, George. “Music, Migration, and Myth: The California Connection.” Reading California: Art, Image, and Identity, 1900-2000. Eds.        Stephanie Barron, Sheri Bernstein, and Ilene Susan Fort. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2000. 153-169. Print.

Dr. Dre. “The Day the N*ggas Took Over”. The Chronic. Death Row, 1992. CD

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Posted by on May 29, 2011 in Uncategorized


Dream of a Traffic-free commute

The opening scene in Office Space laughingly reminds us to accept the fact that the dream of a smooth automotive commute may rarely be possible. In the scene the protagonist is seen on his way to work in the middle of a traffic logjam. All of the gridlock cliches come into play, including performing a lane change only to have his previously occupied lane move faster. Throughout the scene an old man using a walker strolls along the sidewalk eventually overtaking our hero. Though the main character in the scene is certainly not amused, we as viewers can relate with laughter, as opposed to rage. It gives us what Carle referred to as “grin-and-bear it advice for avoiding road rage incidents.” (163) Also, the scene’s deeper meaning conveys resignation to the uncontrollable and unavoidable nature of automobile traffic. Therefore, the cumulative emotional energy which Californians devote to it becomes wholly unnecessary. This does not make gridlock enjoyable by any means, but this scene asks us to at least “sigh-and-bear it” if not “grin-and-bear it.” Unfortunately, when such advice goes unheeded, road rage can ensue. Then, what was only an inconvenience turns into something much more consequential, perhaps deadly, as road rage often leads to violence. Simple habit makes traffic more bearable as well. I happen to have a daily commute of an hour which, if the roads were free of traffic, would probably take thirty minutes. I should remind myself of Office Space to calm down when entangled in it, or just leave my house earlier.

Carle, David. Water and the California Dream: Choices for the New Millennium. San Francisco:
Sierra Club Books, 2000. Print.

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Posted by on May 29, 2011 in Uncategorized