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UC PROMPT #1 - "Average? Maybe not"


d54739106184219 1 / 3  
Nov 13, 2009   #1
Prompt #1: Describe the world you come from - for example, your family, community or school - and tell us how your world has shaped your dreams and aspirations.

Average? Maybe not.

I am your typical, not-so-special, average Asian-American. I live with my mom and dad, we aren't rich or poor, and we haven't discovered some long-lost relative that is a billionaire. Unsurprisingly, I have the cliché story of having immigrant parents who came to the United States to study and have a better future. After several years of struggling and both with their master's degrees, they finally settled down and I was born. Nothing so special about that.

I suppose, however, that I can say my birth was a miracle. While my mother was pregnant, she had problems in her body and had to go through surgical operations that could have been deleterious to the fetal me in her womb (awkard?). Because of my mother's illness, it seemed as if I would not be born. But somehow, my mother pulled it through all the way, and gave me the gift of life.

Being born under such difficult circumstances, it is no question that my parents brought me up very carefully, doing their best to guide their only child down the right path. Blanketed in their excessive concern for my future, I grew up knowing little. They wanted me to have a prosperous life, raising me in conditions that they were not fortunate enough to have. As a child, I dreamed of becoming a musician, inspired by my pianist mother who taught me to play the piano for eleven years. Keeping the piano as my canvas for music, I moved on to play the violin. It was then that I grasped the idea of the vast cultures of the world, and the vastness of the world itself. I was given opportunities to travel, playing the music I loved and learning about different people in different places. Having traveled to countries such as Russia, Finland, Estonia, Germany, and Poland, my horizons of the world expanded, as I was exposed to many different cultures. Having first-hand experience, I realized that I have so much more to learn about this world of diversity I am living in (awkward?).

All I can say is that I am really thankful to music for opening me up to the world from my little house - a tiny, insignificant speck compared to the whole world. It has sparked my interest in the humanities and I await the next opportunity to travel and reach out to other communities, to learn more about their ways of life. And I will make sure to always bring my violin with me, telling its stories of world-wide travel, and sharing the music that lays deep in the roots of my heart. I guess I'm not so average, after all (Is this necessary?)

pcvrz34g 22 / 117  
Nov 13, 2009   #2
operations that could have been deleterious to the fetal me in her womb

maybe "that could have potentially harmed me in her womb"?? it's kind of obvious that if you're in her womb, you're fetal. haha

brought me up very carefully

i suggest using "raised me very carefully."

All I can say is that I am really thankful to music for opening me up to the world from my little house

take out "all i can say is". that is not necessary.

please read mine porfavor (:
natsuken 2 / 7  
Nov 13, 2009   #3
Prompt #1: Describe the world you come from - for example, your family, community or school - and tell us how your world has shaped your dreams and aspirations.

I feel that your 1st and 2nd paragraphs has brought you slightly off track. Perharps looking back at the essay question might help.
guswls 1 / 4  
Nov 13, 2009   #4
I suppose, however, that I can say my birth was a miracle. While my mother was pregnant, she had problems in her body and had to go through surgical operations that could have been deleterious to my birth . But somehow, my mother pulled it through all the way, and gave me the gift of life.

I actually think the first 2 paragraphs are a good intro to your family background, good essay!
EF_Kevin 8 / 13,335 129  
Nov 14, 2009   #5
Wow, I really like the effect you have at the beginning... I like your use of "unsurprisingly." :-)

I live with my mom and dad; we aren't rich or poor, and we haven't discovered some long-lost relative that is a billionaire. Unsurprisingly, my story is that well-known cliché about ha ving immigrant parents who came to the United States to study and have a better future.

So cool! At the end, you are correct in your suspicion that the last sentence is not helpful. At the end, you should say something deeper about being special -- and for ideas, you might want to google epistemology. Read about epistemology, an then say something at the end that refers back to the thing about whether or not you are special.
OP d54739106184219 1 / 3  
Nov 19, 2009   #6
Thank you!
any other help is greatly appreciated!

I think I need some help on the general tone of the essay, is it too casual in the beginning?
Vulpix - / 71  
Nov 20, 2009   #7
This essay is short and sweet and simple and plain, but it's all very well done- there's a good overall effect. Despite some momentary awkwardness in syntax- try reading your essay out loud, some sentences seem a little lumpy- the style is straightforward and consistent throughout.

"While my mother was pregnant, she had problems in her body and had to go through surgical operations that could have been deleterious to the fetal me in her womb."

I agree with the comments above regarding the awkwardness of this sentence. In particular, the word "deleterious" stands out to me as rather unfitting. To be honest, it sounds unnatural, as if you right-clicked in Microsoft Word to find the synonym with as many syllables as possible. I would go with "harmful" instead.

I feel that you could shorten your first paragraph a little- the "I'm ordinary" message becomes redundant pretty quickly- and expand on your second paragraph. No need to give private details, but perhaps you could elaborate a little more on what, exactly, your mother's affliction was?

Also, I am a little confused as to why playing the violin led to exposure to many different cultures. Did you travel because you were invited to play concerts in those countries? Or was there some other reason?


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