Jessica Ford:
I chose #1:

I’d like to first address the story, “The Thirteenth Night.” This story actually has me very confused and torn at the relationship of parental roles in children’s lives. We know from the story that Oseki’s parents “pressed her, how could she defy them? She had always hoped to marry Roku, though he had never made any overtures, it was true. In the end, her parents persuaded her…” Osaki was in a marriage to a wealthy man she didn’t love. Her parents did not force the marriage, and even were very honest and hesitant that his standing in society was well above hers, but in the end, the parent’s persistence and hope for a better life for their daughter trumped her school girl “puppy love.” How interesting it is that after years of a horrible and verbally abusive marriage, her father was the one who persuaded her to stay. Although miserable she may be, she had a duty to fulfill. “It is trying for you, Oseki, I know;. Think of what your marriage means to us, though, and to Inosuke, and to Taro.” I was devastated with her father’s response, but I also sympathized with him. Parental interventions were the forefront of the whole story. Without them, she wouldn’t have been in a terrible marriage, however with them, her family has been “blessed” through her husband’s standing. As a parent, this story made me anxious and sympathetic. We all want what is best for our children…many times to a fault. The expectations put on children from well-intentioned parents, can be a tremendous blessing, or a catastrophic curse. After reading “The Thirteenth night, I went on to read, “Seperate Ways.” The two main characters both had a complete lack of parental interventions. Kichizo says, “What was I, born from a piece of wood?” Okyo, however did have some relatives, but only lived and supported herself. However, I think it is very interesting, that even with a lack of parental intervention, Okyo makes the decision for herself, to enter into a relationship that may not be successful. However, unlike Osaki, she makes the decision all alone, because after all, as she says, “…”I’m sick of all this washing and sewing. Anything would be better. I’m tired of these drab clothes. I’d like to wear a crepe kimono, too, for a change, even if it is tainted.” What a paradoxical situation. Oseki chose the “higher” life as a result of wanting to please her parents but Okyo made her own decision that she too wanted a change, hopefully for the better. Both women, made a bet with their future. With or without parental intervention. I must assume that Okyo’s new life perhaps may not turn out to be the “change” that she would truly want. I love how Ichiyo plays off of all different situations. I love how Osaki’s parents were so involved and loved her so much. I also love how Okyo was so independent and successful in her own way, without parental support. They both chose what they would hope would be a “better” life. However, all too often…our hopes seem to be crushed with the weight of reality. We have two women with incredibly different parental support systems. However, they both made the same decision. Perhaps Osaki had a little truth about her when she says, “A child grows up even without his parents, they say. He might be better off without such an unfortunate mother.” Two girls. Two different parental relationships. However, the same decision was made.
Dado Castillo:
Hello everyone I chose prompt 2 for this week. I had difficulties with this weeks stories. I do not know why it was difficult to read this week. I read each story a couple times and I still seemed to not be able to comprehend or understand the stories all the way. I guess the one I did understand or the one that did not confuse me a lot was “Encounters on a Dark Knight.” Going into this prompt though I am not sure how I could put it to work, but I know there were gaps in the story where something would happen then it went to something else. I think this is the reason it kind of confused me. The characters were in different places, and I have troubles with stories where it goes from thoughts to an actual situation. Maybe from this discussion I can gain ideas on how to comprehend these type of stories. This story did job from talking about a fire in a ladies mind to a kid being hit. The kid who got hit then was taken in by a lady and her husband. The lady then grabbed a neighbor and asked if he could offer his medical help. This was a gap in which was confusing. I cannot really say if this gap between talking with the fire and the homeless kid being hit is a inner though of someone. I just really wish I could comprehend these stories from this week better.