“Top of the World” English 11 Narrative Essay

Top of the World

-Jeremy Zhao

My feet hanging off the ledge, thousand feet of darkness lying beneath me; I feel like I’m really on top of the world.

It all started with a dream. Mountain biking has always been my passion. Although my hometown-shanghai, China is one of the biggest and most populated city on earth it is possible the most unlikely place for one to mountain bike, but I kept this hobby throughout my childhood.

Although there are a handful of trails a few hours’ drive from Shanghai, they are all poorly build, poorly marked and do not have any sort of challenge. But on the other side of the globe, it’s a completely different story…

The holy land and the founding place of mountain biking, British Columbia, Canada with more than 8000 marked trails and world’s best lifted accessed bike park -Whistler. Whistler has always been my dream destination for mountain biking, but it is halfway across the world.

Well, that’s not the case anymore. Now I live here, Coquitlam: five minutes’ drive from world class mountain bike trails and two hours drive from Whistler.

Whistler is such a majestic place, with the roaring rivers, the snow-capped mountains, it is truly the Garden of Eden for extreme sports and Heaven for sportsman alike, but one must admit the crown jewel of it all is the peak of Whistler. Sitting at 7000 feet, the peak chair of Whistler is one of the highest chairlift in BC. Although the peak zone is nothing of too much significance in winter, when the summer rolls around it becomes something special.  A trail like no other lies here, Top of the World: a trail covered with razor-sharp rocks and thousand feet clip to the side. Stretches over five kilometers and 2000 feet of elevation, a trail that’s limited to 100 riders daily, only open two months per year and a trail that cost extra 20 dollars per lap: this is not an easy trail to ride.

Even within so many restrictions, one must try this trail. And that’s exactly what I decide to do in the summer of 2016.

I sprint out of the bed; today is the day; I am going to ride Top of the World. But there is a catch… Anyone with common sense will ride whistler bike park with full face helmet and neck brace, unfortunately I broke my helmet the day before riding Top of the World. After debating with myself all night I decide YOLO and kept my plan of riding a few of the hardest trails with a half face trail helmet, I’m sure I was one of the handful maniacs who did that in 2016.

I walked into the bike park, my heart is pumping so hard, I’m not only riding one of the hardest and longest trail on the mountain that I have never ridden before, I’m also doing it without adequate protections, If I mess up and crash I will plow my face straight into those razor sharp rocks…

As those scary thoughts rushing through my mind, as time flew past. When I came out of my thoughts I was already at the roundhouse and about to load up the peak chair… On to the peak chair we go, I look down, the view is so different than winter. Without the soft puffy snow covering everything, the mountain doesn’t seem so kind with it’s scattered sharp rocks and hanging cliffs…

After a short ride, I’m at the peak of Whistler, it was a long journey but I made it… My feet hanging off the ledge, thousand feet of darkness lying beneath me. I felt like I’m really on top of the world. This is what I live for.

The ride was amazing and I didn’t plow my face into the ground as I thought I would…


I did well on:

Ok story

Ok organization


Need to improve:


Sentence structure

Is it appropriate to use First Nation names or mascots as sports team name?

Is it appropriate to use First Nation names or mascots as sports team name?

After the extensive research of in regards of whether it’s appropriate to use Native American names and mascots as a professional sports team name or mascot, I am somewhat torn…

In this Inquiry my personal area was the naming controversy of the Washington Redskins, arguably the most publicized and controversial team name in recent history. My personal opinion on this topic before the research was, First Nation mascot and names are appropriate to be used as long as it was portrayed correctly. And my opinion remains the same.

Most Native American team name was not designed with the intent of being used as a racial slur, instead often it’s used to honor native induvial who had great contribution with the team. In the case of the Washington Redskin, according to a letter from the team owner Daniel Snyder, the team was renamed to “Boston Redskins” from “Boston Braves” in 1933 to honor the four Native American players on the team at the time and the legendary head coach at the time Lone Star Dietz (William Henry Dietz, Sioux Indian) who is also native (There are controversy with if he is really a Native American).

But if they did not portray the Native American image correctly than that’s inappropriate. In the case of the Washington Redskins, although the intention of the naming was good but the origin of the word Redskins was very cruel- the word redskin came from the time when European settlers will kill Native Americans for bounty and then they referred the natives as the Redskins. So in the case of the redskin, when whoever named the team 84 years ago was poorly educated and they should recognize the issue and change the name.

Personally, like I previously stated, I believe it’s ok to use First Nation mascot and names as long as it’s accurate. Even the ad campaign by National Congress of American Indians against the Redskin name was about calling them self the correct terms, I don’t think anyone would mind if a team is called Chicago Lakota.


Works Cited:

“Letter from Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder to fans.” The Washington Post, WP Company, 9 Oct. 2013, www.washingtonpost.com/local/letter-from-washington-redskins-owner-dan-snyder-to-fans/2013/10/09/e7670ba0-30fe-11e3-8627-c5d7de0a046b_story.html?utm_term=.c51196709d94.

www.browsermedia.com, BrowserMedia -. “NCAI Releases Report on History and Legacy of Washington’s Harmful “Indian” Sports Mascot.” NCAI Releases Report on History and Legacy of Washington’s Harmful “Indian” Sports Mascot | NCAI, www.ncai.org/news/articles/2013/10/10/ncai-releases-report-on-history-and-legacy-of-washington-s-harmful-indian-sports-mascot..

PoetrySlamVancouver. “Winona Linn – Knock-Off Native.” YouTube, YouTube, 30 Jan. 2013, www.youtube.com/watch?v=i_zFOsd_pqA.