I am interested in The New York Times article “To Fall in Love with Anyone, Do This” by UBC Lecturer Mandy Len Catron because it explores a topic that I am very interested in; as a teenager who has not experienced love and has nearly lost hope on finding love, this article is a rope to a drowning man because it explains how falling in love can be intentional rather than serendipitous. I find Catron’s argument that love is “a more pliable thing than we make it out to be” very intriguing because the notion that love is not just something that happens by accident seems to go contrarily to how pop culture portrays love. Catron’s claim is actually quite comforting because she argues that love is a feeling that can be constructed. Catron’s style relies on the use of descriptive language in combination with imagery to provide readers with insights into her emotional state during her date such as when she describes the act of staring into the eyes of her love interest and observing the biological mechanisms of the eye as “the spherical nature of the eyeball [and] the visible musculature of the iris” contracts with light. “To Fall in Love with Anyone, Do This” is related to a myriad of real-life issues that concern most people because it touches arguably on one of the most important aspects of life: finding love. This article provides hope for millions of lonely people who have not yet found their significant other by reminding them that love can be a deliberate act and that true love can be initiated through intentional actions rather than leaving the whole process up to chance. While hormones do play a part, the comforting thing about love is that our rational minds still control the helm.
I am interested in The New York Times article “Yes, I’m in a Clique” by Nathan Black because I think his discussion of social hierarchy at many American secondary schools is relevant; I find his argument that cliques, despite popular misconceptions, are actually not a negative aspect of social life in high schools but an inevitable result when people of different backgrounds get together and coexist in a small space to be a relevant and insightful observation. Black, a high school student from Littleton, Colorado, uses a colloquial style combined with anecdotes to show how personal experiences with cliques can be helpful in instilling a sense of self-confidence in people just as “the good times” he had in his clique “convinced… [him] that… [he is] an O.K. person.” Black’s use of first person and informal diction such as “O.K.” provides readers with insight on the misunderstanding of cliques through his conversational tone. “Yes, I’m in a Clique” is directly related to real-life issues because it is written in the aftermath of the devasting Columbine school shootings and reveals the exclusionary tendency that is part of human nature. Throughout history, human beings have shown a preference for one group over another such as during the First World War when different nationalistic groups excluded each other, which reshaped Europe and led to the formation of many new states. Forming cliques is an inescapable part of human nature just as there are 193 sovereign nations in the world, which are merely 193 large cliques. Cliques are neutral and people should not assume they are bad because making groups is a natural human behaviour because differences and similarities will always exist.