All the "shoot your pet" choices have failed to make it to the semi-finalists! It was a tough round, but Alan's euthanized animal kingdom beat Old Yeller's rabies.

Regarding the first question, not to tip the scales, but I recalled two pieces of information that might be useful: the cat is one of the few characters who does not starve to death in the apocalypse; when Sounder's face gets shot off, the boy puts part of his ear under his pillow and prays for him to recover.

Incidentally, it's already out of the competition, but I found an excerpt from the Scottish dog-on-dog massacre. And Hoppin's young dog, who three hours before had been the children's tender playmate, now fiendish to look on, dragged after the huddle up the hill. Back the mob rolled on her. When it was passed, she lay quite still, grinning; a handful of tawny hair and flesh in her dead mouth.

Have fun, folks!



[Poll #1139946]

From: [identity profile] gnarlycranium.livejournal.com

*brain explodes*


Okay I can't take this anymore. I was angry already at the crap they made me read-- hearing about all these other books I never got afflicted with is driving me nuts. WHY DOES THE WORLD FUCKING HATE CHILDREN??? Seriously, I gotta know. It's like some kind of awful Marcabian conspiracy or something-- every single damn book they make you read in school is specifically designed to crush any hope you had in life or any will you may have had to enjoy reading. You sit down a bunch of short-attention-span, disillusioned, bored, grumpy kids and in the name of education and edification, you give them.... Les Miserables??? Greek fucking worldofANGSTcannibalismdeathANGST tragedies???? WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH THESE PEOPLE?!! ARRRRRRRRGH!!!

What is this, they think they're trying to prepare us for the cruelty of the real world, or something? The grief and horror has to be pounded in early? Like we hadn't noticed already?? What do they have against GOOD books? Mark Twain for instance, it's actually okay, yet they keep trying to BAN that shit. And why do they never, never never EVER consider having you read some-- gasp! shock! amazement!-- sci fi? Why is it never anybody current or relevant, but just crappy Victorian type authors who are fucking DEAD??? And then some Chaucer? They actually expect high school kids to have the patience to even try to GET Chaucer? They expect to teach us cultural and literary appreciation by flinging the world's most depressive and/or unintelligible crap at us?? *cries*

I'm trying to decide between the stuff in the polls but the only answer I can come up with is option C: A world that actually expects kids to read this bloody spume.

From: [identity profile] sienamystic.livejournal.com

Re: *brain explodes*


All you need to teach Chaucer is a willingness to linger on the fart jokes and the illicit sex.

From: [identity profile] gnarlycranium.livejournal.com

Re: *brain explodes*


I think we skipped those parts. All I remember about Candide was that it made next to no sense, and thinking that if this was the teachers' idea of humor, it was a very convoluted attempt.
ext_3319: Goth girl outfit (Default)

From: [identity profile] rikibeth.livejournal.com

Re: *brain explodes*


Candide isn't Chaucer, it's Voltaire. And here I thought it sucked because we had to translate as we read and the jokes just weren't coming through our imperfect knowledge of the language. Our teacher assured us that the very sound of the name Cunegonde was hysterically vulgar and amusing to a Frenchman.

From: [identity profile] gnarlycranium.livejournal.com

Re: *brain explodes*


Was it? Blargh, it's all blending together. Voltaire's the man, I know this now, but in high school it was just so much WTF?
ext_3319: Goth girl outfit (Default)

From: [identity profile] rikibeth.livejournal.com

Re: *brain explodes*


I agree, Candide was just full of WTF. Chaucer, on the other hand, was GREAT STUFF. "For well he knew a woman hath no beard!" And the silly Prioress with her lap dogs (although her Tale made me wretchedly uncomfortable) and the rockin' Wife of Bath. Chaucer was, like, a million times better than E.M. Forster or Edith Wharton. You cut your teeth on Chaucer and the Victorians seem awfully bloodless.

From: [identity profile] tekalynn.livejournal.com

Re: *brain explodes*


It's very dark humor. I think a lot of it makes more sense if you're an eighteenth century French person.
ext_3319: Goth girl outfit (Default)

From: [identity profile] rikibeth.livejournal.com

Re: *brain explodes*


oh, but Chaucer is great, and full of fart jokes. We LOVED Chaucer in HS.

From: [identity profile] janni.livejournal.com

Re: *brain explodes*


I think what happens is individually, each of the books makes sense as its own story. (I had to think about this a bunch because I wound up having to kill off a character in the rewrites of my current book, because things just made more sense that way, even though I didn't really want to.)

But I'm not sure most writers of depressing books want depressing books to be all that teens read. It's someone on the curriculum level who puts all the depressing books together and forgets to balance things out more. I mean, we all need to read lighter books mixed in with the darker ones, or else, like, go insane.

This is why I think schools should teach A Midsummer Night's Dream before they teach Romeo and Juliet. (But keep the Chaucer. Chaucer isn't depressing. :-))
ext_3319: Goth girl outfit (Default)

From: [identity profile] rikibeth.livejournal.com

Re: *brain explodes*


Chaucer isn't depressing as long as they skip the Prioress' Tale. Yes, I was able to get over it and learn from it and all, but it's about as comfortable for Jewish kids as the repeated n-word in Huck Finn is for African-American kids.

And my schools were in favor of doing A Midsummer Night's Dream. So much so that I had it in class THREE TIMES. :-/ MY vote's for Much Ado About Nothing.

From: [identity profile] janni.livejournal.com

Re: *brain explodes*


Much Ado would be lovely.

Or Twelfth Night or The Tempest, for that matter. :-)

From: [identity profile] spectralbovine.livejournal.com


1. This was actually a little tough, but what tipped the scales is your mother asking you to starve so your brother can live. That's agony!

2. INSANE.

From: [identity profile] tharain.livejournal.com


1. I swim against the tide, because I could say to mom "Sod off, mom, and hand me that pork chop."

2. I went with the first, because, with enough therapy, one could recover from the second. Maybe.

People SELL this stuff? And READ IT??

From: [identity profile] lady-ganesh.livejournal.com


Where I went with the second because I figure if you're mentally ill enough it won't bother you so much.

And give it awards!

From: [identity profile] yhlee.livejournal.com


Now I'm glad I spent most of my childhood doing things like reading nonfiction on diseases and addiction and science and war. Because, seriously, LESS DEPRESSING.

From: [identity profile] lady-ganesh.livejournal.com

recovered memory department.


I read a bunch of Holocaust stuff in sixth grade and my teacher wondered if there was something wrong with me. But compared to this stuff? IT WAS TAME.

From: [identity profile] tekalynn.livejournal.com

Re: recovered memory department.


I went on a Holocaust/WWII novel kick in fifth grade, no doubt related to the (untreated) depression I was going through at the time. My favorite book was I Am Sixteen and I'm Too Young to Die, followed closely by the Diary of Anne Frank.

From: [identity profile] amberdulen.livejournal.com


This series of posts is amazing, I cannot wait for the final ANGST VS ANGST showdown.

From: [identity profile] janni.livejournal.com


I was really surprised the cat made it in LAWKI. (And wasn't entirely sure I believed it, much as I loved the book. At some point, wouldn't you kick the cat out and start eating cat food? If you can starve for little brother's sake, the cat can starve for yours ...)

I still say the orangutans was robbed.

From: [identity profile] janni.livejournal.com


Or that someone was.

The thing about the apocalypse, though, in that book at least, is that it isn't anyone's fault, unlike racism.

And the orangutans. :-)

From: [identity profile] lady-ganesh.livejournal.com


Were they feeding the cat, though? (I haven't read the book.) Because cats are excellent scavengers.

From: [identity profile] janni.livejournal.com


Yeah, the cat was totally being fed, and being kept indoors I think. They loaded up on cat food early on, and mentioned having to cut the cat's rations later.

And humans can, if desperate enough, eat cat food themselves ...

From: [identity profile] free-the-goats.livejournal.com


The Slave Dancer. This book made me ill as a child. It's about this teenager who plays the flute, and he's kidnapped and forced to play music on the trip from Africa to the Caribbean, I think, so the slaves can dance and keep their muscle tone. After the story is over, he's never able to listen to music again.
kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)

From: [personal profile] kate_nepveu


Difficult! I think "your own mother to ask you to volunteer to starve so your brother can maybe have a better chance" tips the scales for me on the first, but it's tough.
.

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