they tell me i'm the shit, i'm like duh
Japanese Application Essay
When learning a language like Japanese, having exposure to pure Japanese culture is critical. Japanese social expectations, manners and speech are very different from those of America, which adds more layers of complexity to the language. Even the basics of Japanese, such as distal and direct style, don’t have an exact equivalent in English; this creates additional barriers for an American learning Japanese. Acquiring a true comprehension and understanding of another culture is limited in a classroom setting, as it is removed from the culture. In our high school Japanese language class, a grasp of authentic Japanese culture is restricted to what we read in textbooks, glean from movies, and learn from the teacher. It is difficult to develop appreciation for a way of life when all knowledge is purely secondhand rather than experienced in an immersed setting. To learn and observe these social differences personally would be a unique and amazing experience that I yearn to have to further my Japanese studies.
I have always been interested in Japan. My brother and father travelled to Japan on numerous occasions for Karate while I was growing up and we hosted a woman at our house from Japan who knew very little English. From a young age I have been aware of Japan and eager to learn as much as I can about it. With no resources from which to learn Japanese, I opted for listening to Japanese songs and singing along to them. In middle school I realized I could take matters into my own hands and taught myself Hiragana and Katakana along with very basic Kanji. Soon after I learned of Grant’s Japanese classes, I decided to transfer from my neighborhood school, meaning a longer commute. It has all been worth it, however, as I am currently enrolled in my third year of Japanese, and I intend to continue to soak up as much of the language and culture as I can. Learning Japanese is a passion that I will continue to pursue throughout college, and I intend to minor in Japanese studies. Since the nature of the summer trip is immersion for ten days, it involves Japanese communication that is more extensive than the three and a half hours a week currently provided by my Japanese class. At this period in my learning, an intermediate comprehension of the language is blossoming. I strongly feel that I have been provided with the foundation necessary to communicate with Japanese students and hosts for the 2013 summer trip. At this point, my understanding of Japanese will only mature further, and this opportunity offers an excellent bridge to become closer to reaching Japanese fluency and cultural understanding.
As U.S. youth ambassadors, we will represent America, and for many of the Japanese students, we will be the first American students they’ll ever meet. We will be the only reflection of the knowledge that Koga Sensei and her interns have passed onto us, and we’ll hold the responsibility of representing Grant and Portland Public Schools as a whole. Just as we were curious towards the Japanese exchange students in January, they too will be eager to hear of the way we live. It is important that as U.S. ambassadors we emulate capability of our own culture, and that we be prepared to share our wealth of knowledge with the Japanese students. Working together, we will explore and absorb each other’s cultural diversity. Our aim is to create an agreeable, friendly equilibrium between our cultures. It is a high honor for Grant to be chosen as one of the eight schools in the country to give their students this incredible opportunity. It reflects how important our Neighborhood Japanese Language is, proving it to be vital to our relationship to the Japanese government.
That being said, it is not a chance to be taken lightly. While the trip will be exciting and fun, that is not the mission of the trip, or how I intend to treat it. As we observe and enjoy our time in Japan, the Japanese people we will meet are studying our behavior, interests and manners. With the prestigious honor of being chosen to represent the United States by Japanese government, it will be one of the most important events of our lives and it is critical for us to demonstrate maturity and a high motivation to learn. What I would share with the Japanese students is an insight to the differences of our cultures. I believe my newfound knowledge from our comparison project, along with my expanded vocabulary, will offer insightful information to Japanese students in their own language on the contrasts of our way of life, and offer them details of what American teenage life is like.
Learning and translating Japanese is very stimulating and I am amazed already at the amount of progress and understanding that has been accomplished in only three years. To continue adding more elaborate levels of speech, I know this trip will not only further immerse me in Japanese culture, but also open new doors and possibilities for my future in the study of the language. I know that I would be a knowledgeable, insightful, and motivated candidate for the summer 2013 trip to Japan.
The Places We’ll Go
“This foolish idea of shooting at the moon is an example of the absurd lengths to which vicious specialisation will carry scientists.” A.W. Bickerton, physicist, 1926.
Today we live in an era that bathes in technology. Our cities are riddled with telephone poles, electric lights, trains, cars and airplanes in the sky. The world has more cell phones than toilets, and computers are a commonplace object in every household. Television, weather forecast, WiFi, GPS and telephone communication are all made feasible with the existence of satellites. Modern technology has achieved what was once thought impossible, creating 3D printers and a whole array of artificial body parts. And what do all of these have in common? They were all at a point in time declared impossible.
Since the industrial revolution, mankind has travelled a long way. Perhaps one of the biggest milestones reached happened on July 20th, 1969. It was the landing of Apollo 11 on the Moon’s surface. The feat was considered so drastic and unachievable that even today there are still many skeptics regarding the landing to be a hoax. Skeptics aside though, no one previously imagined that humans going to the moon would be realistic in their lifetimes, especially due to the invention of the airplane only less than a hundreds years prior. Yet our determination and scientific progression led us through to our goal, in turn opening new doors for the future, a future that will lead to the next drastic step for mankind. With technological advancements exponentially furthering, a new era of space travel is bound to unfold. The next big step for mind kind is human colonization in space.
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“The whole procedure [of shooting rockets into space]…presents difficulties of so fundamental a nature, that we are forced to dismiss the notion as essentially impracticable, in spite of the insistent appeal to put aside prejudice and to recollect the supposed impossibility of heavier-than-air flight before it was actually accomplished.” Richard van der Riet Wooley, British astronomer, 1936. Less than a century ago, the mere idea of a human travelling to space was still inconceivable. Efforts were deemed absurd and hopeless, but only thirty years later, in 1961, scientific advancement prevailed and Russia successfully launched a man by the name of Yuri Gagarin into Earth’s orbit. There are currently many cynics criticizing efforts to colonize space, but as seen with previous concepts and ideas, the capabilities of humans can be potentially endless.
To begin, what is space colonization? Space colonization is organized settlements located outside of Earth, where humans reside. Theoretically speaking, an outer space colony would have to be self sufficient and nearly independent from Earth. As of yet, there are no colonizations in space. There is, however, the International Space Station. Although humans do reside there, it is not permanent and is only used for work.
If we look at the most feasible places for space colonization, there are three main locations. Firstly is colonizing the moon. This is the most reasonable location to begin initial colonization due to such close proximity between Earth and it being the most explored. Second possibility is colonizing on Mars. Thirdly is colonization in outer space inside of a massive space station the orbits Earth. This last location is drastically different compared to the previous two ways. Construction would be in zero gravity, and all gravity inside the enormous framework would be artificial.
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The first question to be asked is where and how the supplies necessary to build these structure will originate from. Transporting objects from earth to space is exceedingly expensive, with every pound sent into space costing ten thousand dollars. This being the case, a different primary source is to be used; NEOs. A NEO is a Near Earth Object, such as comets, asteroids, satellites and junk. Nearby asteroids floating in Earth’s orbit have been found to contain rich quantities of Nitrogen, Hydrogen, Dihydrogen Monoxide, Oxygen, Iron, Platinum, Magnesium and Gold. The Platinum, Oxygen, and Dihydrogen Monoxide (Water) in particular are extremely convenient resources that are crucial for engineering livable structures in space.
The Moon also has luscious quantities of these resources, as well as isotope Helium-3, a lunar asset that has nuclear fusion powering capabilities, a freshly developing excellent source of cleaner energy. An advantage to colonizing the moon is that not only are asteroid reserves nearby available to mine for materials in building a colonized area, the Moon itself is ripe with materials that are directly in the location they would be used at. To top it off, ice resides under the Moon’s surface. This critical ingredient to life is within close access, making the Moon that much more livable.
To have a livable environment, there are four essential objectives. There needs to be breathable air, water, food and shelter. Because of the drastic difference in atmospheres outside of Earth, all shelter would absolutely have to be airtight and a constant oxygen supply is critical. Steady supplies of oxygen can be harvested from greenhouses. Because Moon agriculture will be very different from agriculture on Earth, until the Moons temperature rises, all plants would be grown in underground facilities. Due to the lunar greenhouses being underground, there would be need for solar collectors facing the sun. There is
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already prototypes for lunar greenhouses, developed by Gene Giocomelli. A single greenhouse would produce a days worth of oxygen and water for a single person, and on top of that, they provide half the caloric intake needed for a day.
Mars, another colonization candidate, is also enriched with many valuable elements such as Oxygen, Hydrogen, Water and Magnesium, elements that are important to life. Martian atmosphere, contradicting from the Moon’s, is ninety five percent Carbon Dioxide. This creates an excellent opportunity to extract resources from Mars, due to Carbon dioxide’s plentifulness. When Carbon Dioxide it set to a pressure of 73atm (atmospheres, a unit of pressure) and 31.1 degrees celsius, it becomes a supercritical fluid. Under those conditions, the Carbon Dioxide has use as a solvent. It can be used to literally flush desired materials from the Martian soil, a mining technique that requires much less effort.
Although Mars has the potential to be mined more efficiently than the Moon for supplies, initial colonization on the Moon still trumps a colonization on Mars. We are more familiar with the Moon’s terrain and the trip from Earth takes less than a week. Mars in comparison takes seven months. It must be kept in mind as well that when beginning construction on livable buildings, tools and machinery must be transported from Earth. Since longer travel time requires more fuel, this means less space and more cost per transporting rocket. It would be quite foolish to begin on Mars. Rather, expansion onto Mars and other planets must come later, at a time when space fuel stations exist in orbit.
Yet there is a better substitute for a space fuel station, and that would be an outer space colony. Again, this would most likely take place after a Moon colony is developed. The reason for this being is
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that for making a space colony, a base would need to be created in a setting with gravity. The Moon is the ideal construction site because the lower gravity makes the process easier. Also, less fuel and energy is needed to launch the space colony base into space from the Moon than Earth. Once in space, additional adjustments can be made.
Although a simple concept, making a livable space station with our current technology is not a reality. The cost would be enormous. Todays average space shuttle costs over two billion dollars to produce and is less than one hundred feet long. A space colony base would need to many square kilometres in size. It would simply be too expensive to do without having a dire, justifiable motive.
The vast space offers us is endess, and it would go against human nature to limit ourselves to Earth. Our overwhelming curiosity is justified reason enough. However, a stronger incentive exists.
“Unless we are willing to settle down into a world that is our prison, we must be ready to move beyond Earth… . People who view industrialization as a source of the Earth’s troubles, its pollution, and the desecration of its surface, can only advocate that we give it up. This is something that we can’t do; we have the tiger by the tail. We have 4.5 billion people on Earth. We can’t support that many unless we’re industrialized and technologically advanced. So, the idea is not to get rid of industrialization but to move it somewhere else. If we can move it a few thousand miles into space, we still have it, but not on Earth. Earth can then become a world of parks, farms, and wilderness without giving up the benefits of industrialization.” Isaac Asimov, ‘Our Future in the Cosmos—Space’ 1983. There is no debate among scientists that global warming does not exist. The truth of the matter is that our world is negatively changing more and more rapidly as a result of human industrialism. Carbon emissions are only
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increasing. With more carbon dioxide in our atmosphere, oceans will become more acidic which will destroy marine life’s ecosystems, in turn leaving millions of people without food. Fresh water is decreasing, and the population is ever growing. Eventually humans must expand from this world if our race is to be continued peacefully, and space colonization is the first step for healthy expansion.
Those who claim that a human colony in space is impossible are incorrect in disbelieving the power of science. The beauty of science and space is boundless, as are the possibilities of our future. To limit a theoretically plausible concept would only inhibit us as a species. “For my own part, I declare I know nothing whatever about it, but looking at the stars always makes me dream, as simply as I dream over the black dots representing towns and villages on a map. Why, I ask myself, shouldn’t the shining dots of the sky be as accessible as the black dots on the map of France?”, Vincent van Gogh, 1889.
Is it ok to only talk to a person because I want their pretty body? As in a flirty boy has been talking to me and he is the OH MY GOODNESS- THE LARGEST IDIOT but damn he is so attractive, and that is the only thing I could care about. Maybe it is ok though. I think I should be a little selfish for myself.
~~~but what about my other beautiful crushass?!~~~ KF and IP and JC?!
Oh ok let me just walk my fucking horse to a Grant High school baseball game