Woods' English 2A

This blog is intended to be used as a discussion forum for Mrs. Woods' 2A students from Piedmont Hills High School. The blog will allow each student to offer responses and reactions to the novels read outside of class. This blog will also allow you to read the reactions of others.

Monday, December 10, 2007

"Rules of the Game"


Blogger Julie said...

Chess Champion
“Rules of the Game”
1. Waverly gets special treatment because she was good at chess. However, she didn’t get good overnight because she worked hard to earn a top spot so I felt like she deserved some special treatment. Still, she took it too far by spending more time on her chess rather than her family. I didn’t like how Lindo bragged about her daughter because she made it seem like she was the one that won instead of Waverly.
2. I would describe the relationship between Waverly and her mother as tough love. She protects Waverly by scaring her so that she would not disobey. At the end of the vignette, she ignored Waverly’s presence in order to teach her a lesson.
3. Amy Tan uses the chess pieces at the end of the vignette to signify the fight between Waverly and her mother, Lindo. It connects the story back to the title, “Rules of the Game,” and to Waverly, who is a child prodigy in chess. It makes the reader imagine Lindo’s chess pieces moving across a board and attacking Waverly’s.
4. I think the main conflict of this chapter is human vs. human. Waverly and her mother fight each other with their invisible strength. Waverly wants to be independent from her family, but returns to them in the end. Her mom tells the rest of the family not to concern Waverly because Waverly doesn’t concern herself with them. Waverly then imagines herself and her mother fighting with chess pieces and implies that she is losing.

Monday, December 22, 2008 4:32:00 PM  
Blogger dappled said...

Eileen Ly from 7th period


Rules of the Game

When I first read this chapter, it awed me to see how similar Waverly’s mom was to mine. She was always bragging about her daughter. I can sympathize with Waverly, getting annoyed at her mother like that, but I felt it was unfair for her to say that to her mom. Lindo Jong is a proud and also clever woman as I have seen in the story, “The Red Candle” and she taught her daughter to grow up with the “art of invisible strength” (89). Without her mom, Waverly would have never learned to be patient, a key characteristic in winning a chess game. Nonetheless, it’s all up to Waverly to figure out the family mess she’s created. Two stubborn but smart people can take forever to bury the hatchet. I just wonder about how they’ll make up…It also seems to me that Waverly is caught up in her own world, a game where there is just strategy and planning moves. The last line of the story, “I closed my eyes and pondered my next move” (103), inspired me to say that. When she becomes famous for her chess skills, I noticed that Waverly begins to talk back to her mom. Before, she was quiet and mellow. In the store scene near the end of the passage, she says, “I knew it was a mistake to say anything more, but I heard my voice speaking” (101). Why would she say it then? Why not keep it to herself?

The relationship between Waverly and her mother changes from Waverly admiring and listening to Lindo, to Waverly getting annoyed with her mom. So I guess the adjective I would use is metamorphic? Anyway, their relationship is probably the main plot in the story. In the beginning, the first scene that Tan introduces is Waverly’s recollection with her mother teaching her to “bite back [her] tongue” (89). As Waverly begins to play chess, however, she starts to argue with her mom more and more, starting with the scene where her mom says, “Next time win more, lose less” on page 98. Finally, it heats up more and more, with Waverly getting frustrated with her mother and running away for a short while.

I noticed that Amy Tan uses a lot of dialogue to develop the conflict between Waverly and her mom. There are also metaphors and similes used to create descriptive settings for the reader to imagine. She has a lot of word choice, too. I wonder if the wind that Waverly describes is actually symbolism…

In “Rules of the Game”, I learned about different Chinese proverbs such as the line, “Strongest wind cannot be seen” (89). I learned about life in downtown Chinese districts like the place where Waverly lives. The marketplace in the book reminded me of Ocean Supermarket in Milpitas and Chinatown in Oakland.

Friday, December 26, 2008 12:02:00 AM  
Blogger JessieT said...

1. “Pawn”
2. “Rules of the Game”
3. To me, this chapter was enjoyable because I found Waverly Jong to be a very intelligent character, especially when she said she “already knew that the big gifts were not necessarily the nicest ones” (93). I noticed it usually took younger kids a bit longer to figure out that big doesn’t necessarily mean better. It was also cool how this vignette takes place in our own area because I got to see how things changed over time. The unique names for the chess moves that Lau Po taught Waverly were pretty funny, such as “Throwing Stones on the Drowning Man” or “Sand in the Eyes of Advancing Forces” (97). I understood how Waverly felt when she said she couldn’t concentrate because her “mother had a habit of standing over [her]” (100). I can’t concentrate with someone looking over my shoulder either. I found it a little unfair to her brothers when her mother decided to relieve Waverly of her chores just because she played chess well.
4. I would describe the relationship between Waverly Jong and her mother as disagreeing. They don’t seem to be on the same page very often. Waverly got annoyed at her mother when her mother looked over her shoulder while she practiced chess. She also hated the fact that her mother bragged about her being a chess genius, while her mother loved showing her off.
5. In this chapter, Tan uses a lot of personification on the chess pieces. To Waverly, they were “more powerful than old Li’s magic herbs” (94). In the end of the chapter, Waverly has a dream where the opposing chess pieces were marching while her pieces “screamed as they scurried and fell off the board one by one” (103). This improves the story by giving more depth and life to these plastic chess pieces. It also makes the story more variety, which makes it more interesting.
6. There was a lot of Chinese culture placed into this vignette. I got to learn about the alley ways and playgrounds in Chinatown. I also learned that apartments were placed on top of stores or restaurants. The fact that the Chinese had different chess rules than the Americans was new to me.

Friday, December 26, 2008 11:23:00 PM  
Blogger hi,imterri said...

1. “Chess Diva”
2. Rules of the Game
3. I enjoyed reading the plot of this chapter, although I wasn’t really fond of Waverly Jong’s personality once she became a better and well-known chess player in her community. The fame got into her head and Waverly started to constantly use chess as an excuse to avoid finishing her chores. She even used the same excuse in order to get special treatment from her parents, like getting a room, which she formerly shared with her two brothers, all to herself. Chess has turned a once obedient and mellow Waverly to a diva who talks back to her own mother without noticing what hurtful words come out of her mouth. On page 101, during the scene where Waverly accompanies her mother to the markets, I notice how Waverly’s mother has some traits that are similar to my own. For example, in that scene, Waverly becomes annoyed at her boasting mother, she grumbles, “I wish you wouldn’t do that, telling everybody that I’m your daughter.” Her mom freaks out, thinking that Waverly feels ashamed to be with her. In reality though, I think Waverly felt that it was extremely awkward when her mom introduced her to unfamiliar people. I can relate because I imagine that I’d feel the same too if my mom approached every random stranger telling them, “Hi, this is my daughter Terri Tan.” Where’s a rock when you need to hide under it?
4. I think that Waverly Jong’s relationship with her mother Lindo Jong is like a storm that’s on the verge of raging. At the start of the chapter, all is calm and peaceful because Waverly is obedient when it comes to her mothers wishes. She listened to her mother’s stories and followed her wishes. During the Christmas party, however, chess entered Waverly’s life and the relationship she had with her mother started to become cloudy once she learned how to play the game well. As she stated to win more and more games, Waverly starts to complain and argue with her mom more often. This is where thunderous bolts start to clap in the gray and cloudy sky, the sun no where to be seen. The relationship that Waverly had with her mom isn’t as held together as earlier in the chapter. This is shown after Waverly returns home after running away at the market. Her own mother tells her that she doesn’t want to be concerned with her anymore. Upon hearing this sharp comment, Waverly was “gathered up by the wind and pushed up toward the night sky until everything below [her] disappeared and [she] was alone” (Tan 103).
5. In the ending pages of the chapter, it’s clear how well Amy Tan uses word choice in her writing. Tan uses a variety of words, such as “dark”, “cold”, “nowhere to go”, and “quiet” to describe how alone Waverly was feeling after she ran away form the market and her mother.
6. I learned a few things about Chinese culture and society that I didn’t know much about before. I learned the way that buildings were structured in San Francisco’s Chinatown. The apartments that families lived in were stacked on top of stores or restaurants like Legos. I learned about the different foods that the Chinese include in their diet, such as dim sum, fried sesame balls, and sweet curried chicken, to name a few. I also began to notice how the Chinese tend to eat foods that are sweetened.

-Terri Tan
Period 6

Saturday, December 27, 2008 12:20:00 AM  
Blogger tatztastic said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

Saturday, December 27, 2008 6:11:00 AM  
Blogger Linda Nguyen said...

“The Strongest Wind Cannot Be Seen.”
Rules of the Game

I felt like I could understand all of what Waverly was feeling, annoyance and embarrassment from her mother who’s not as fluent in English as her. I was even annoyed by her mother, especially when her mother says things like “Better off lose less!” (99). I understand that all Asian mothers say this because they thinking losing less automatically means you win the game, but they don’t understand the rules of it. Or they don’t understand how to play the game. And Waverly’s mom does what almost all Asian parents do; they like to brag to others about how well their daughter/son is doing in anything academic related. I think it was really unfair that Waverly’s mom called her stupid and gave her the cold shoulder because Waverly didn’t exactly come out screaming at her things like “You’re embarrassing me! Stop it!” although she probably thought it. I think these things are unavoidable in every Asian parent and Asian-American children relationship. The children will always feel embarrassed by their Asian parent with their accent and shameless boasting but I think it’s just because they don’t meet halfway, they don’t understand each other. It saddens me that this chapter ended with Waverly and her mom still fighting, hopefully they’ll find some sort of resolution, and otherwise they’ll end up alone.

Waverly’s relationship with her mom is disconnected and astrayed. There’s a kind of rift between them because Waverly’s mom comes from China and she brings her Chinese culture and heritage with her but Waverly also has learned American customs living in San Francisco’s Chinatown. Waverly doesn’t want to admit it but she’s embarrassed by her mom when she boasts of her success in chess and she’s annoyed when her mom comments about her moves in the game. I think both Waverly and her mom are both blind that they don’t see where the other is coming from, and that’s what hurting their relationship.

At the end of the vignette, Waverly sees in her head her opponent at the chess table, “with two angry black slits” (103). Her opponent must be a metaphor for her mom, who she is quarreling with internally. Her fierce opponent says, “Strongest wind cannot be seen.” This refers to the invisible strength that Lindo has taught Waverly which Waverly has used in her chess matches. It seems that Waverly didn’t see the wind of her mom coming either and therefore in her head, she “rose up into the air and flew out the window…up toward the night sky until everything below [her] disappeared and [she] was alone” (104). If Waverly allows her mom to “push” her, they will drift farther apart without each other. I guess the wind could symbolize either her mom or their cultural differences. Her mom humiliates and irritates her but the root of it is their cultural disparity.

I think the theme here is that if we do not understand the “rules of the game,” we would not play it correctly. Sometimes we don’t understand other people and their ways that differ so much from us because we don’t understand their background, where they come from, or their culture. Because of this, Waverly and her mom are at odds with each other.

Monday, December 29, 2008 3:03:00 PM  
Blogger Diana Nguyen said...

Those are strings, Pinocchio
“Rules of the Game”
1.This particular chapter were in a lot of ways similar to my own relationship with my parents. When Waverly became proficient at playing chess and eventually earned the title of national chess champion she received special treatment from her mother Lindo, who excessively boasts of her daughter's success as a chess player. I felt like I was in the same situation as Waverly because my parents always brag about how I'm such a excellent student, better than the other students. The truth of the matter is that I really hated it because there's even more pressure added on me to do even a better job than everyone else and I would hate to disappoint my parents if I failed and let them down. I felt that Waverly deserved the extra special treatment because she earned it by working hard and becoming a great chess player. However, when she snapped at her mother and said, “Why do you have to use me to show off? If you want to show off, then why don't you learn to play chess” (99). I thought that Waverly was too disrespectful towards her mother and had crossed a line with her when she confronted her with this rude statement.
2.The relationship between Waverly and her mother Lindo is tough and there is much conflict that arises among these two. However, in the beginning of the chapter their relationship is perceived as calm and peaceful. Waverly acts obedient and submissive to her mother by listening to her stories and complies to her wishes. It is not until at the Christmas party that she is introduced to the game of chess and her life is changed forever. As Waverly continues to win more and more chess games, the more distant she gets from her mother and the more arguments are ensued between them, straining their once loving relationship. When Waverly returns home after having ran away from the market, she is told from her mother that she doesn't want anything to do with her and so does the rest of the family.
3.There were a couple of similes that Amy Tan used in this chapter that I liked a lot and really captured my attention. One particular simile that I liked was at the end of the chapter, where she described Waverly's breath to angry smoke; “My breath came out like angry smoke” (102). I really like this simile because it gave me a good image in my head and invoked some sort of dark feeling.
4.It was not to my surprise that I learned some more new, amazing facts about Chinese culture that I didn't know before. For example, I learned the architectural aspects of Chinatown in San Francisco, how the buildings included apartments stacked on top of businesses and restaurants. I also learned a few different food that were included in the Chinese meal which were dim sum and sweet curried chicken, which I've tried a couple of times and though that it was very delicious.

Monday, December 29, 2008 3:04:00 PM  
Blogger Hi. Orange without Seeds. said...

Jane Wong
Period 6

1. The Game of Strategies
2. Rules of the Game
3. This chapter was about a young girl who learned the secrets of a game called Chess. She learned the secrets about it and tried to improve her skills more and more each time. I thought it was interesting that it was a pretty good chapter to tell the reader that sometimes one must follow the rules in order to achieve another goal. So Waverly Jong, the young girl learned some rules from her mother and apparently she followed as many as she could, so she wouldn't disobey her mother and would learn more things herself. I thought the chess tournaments really showed how brave Waverly Jong was. Not only did she go to the tournaments because she was good at games of chess, but also because she was brave and liked to face challenges on her own. I thought it was really interesting to how Lau Po, the man Waverly Jong saw at the playground, taught her how some interesting names in the game of Chess. They were really unique names like The Sudden Meeting of the Clan, THe surprise from the Sleeping Guard, etc. Overall, the c chapter somewhat changed my mind about the game of chess. It made me feel like it wasn't just a game, but something more; something that had to do with more than just playing; something that actually required more than thinking for the strategies. I don't really have any questions for this chapter because I think I pretty much understand why her mother would want to brag about her triumphs in chess.
4. I think the character relationship would be between Waverly Jong and her mother. It's definitely hardcore. I think that her mother just tells her to do things because she wants Waverly to learn constantly. It's something that she wants Waverly to understand throughout the rules of life. Her mother once said, "This American rules, everytime people come out from foreign country, must know rules. You not know, judge say, Too bad, go back" (95). This happened when Waverly Jong was playing chess with her brothers Vincent and Winston. She kept questioning the rules before until her mother told her that she must try to follow the rules because there is no doubt that rules are just rules. But I do believe that her mother only loves her so much like any other parent, that she only wants her child to learn and through the best.
5. I believe Amy Tan used alliteration when she said, "She had no words for me, just sharp silence" (102). I thought sharp silence was a good trait to describe how her mother's eyes were when Waverly talked back to her. It portrayed how they were so sharp that it was only scary enough to bring silence in. Also, on the very last page of the chapter, when she came home and everyone was mad, she went to her room. In her room, she described how the pieces of chess seemed like they were slowly falling off and apart. It said, "My white pieces screamed as they scurrieda nd fell off the board one by one" (103). Amy Tan used personification here when she said, "[her] white pieces screamed" (103). So it shows how the pieces were simply not what they were anymore after all the chaos has happened.
6. a. I think the theme is "the art of invisible strength" (89). I believe this is the theme because throughout the chapter, it teachers us how one eventaully wins " a strategy for winning arguments, respect from others" etc. ( 89). It showed how Waverly Jong just follows the rules, or maybe even followed her heart from the beginning to end to do what she desireed most, yet while following her mothers' and life's rules at the same time. It showed how she went through this path where sometimes she didn't need to actually hear or see anything. All she had to do was follow through to what life told her to do and once she succeeded, she knew that it was all in her.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008 12:40:00 PM  
Blogger amy wang said...

Your Move
Rules of the Game
1. My first reaction was “OH MY GOD” to Waverly’s chess skills. And I was beyond envious. Then I realized she had spent so much time and effort to learn to play chess, learning secrets, and finding them on her own. When Lindo started to show off about Waverly though, telling everyone that this was her daughter, Waverly Jong, I did not really like it. I felt like I could understand how Waverly felt, because the resemblance between Lindo and Waverly was probably pretty obvious, so there was really no need to point out that they were mother and daughter. Lindo probably felt proud of Waverly, and wanted to show it, however, Waverly felt that her mother was trying to show off.
2. Lindo loves Waverly very much, and wants to help her in as many ways as possible, as well as being a part of her chess life. She watches over Waverly like a “protective ally” (100). Waverly thought that her mother was just trying to take credit for herself for telling her to lose less pieces. Her mother had “wore the triumphant grin” (99) when Waverly won her tournament because Waverly had lost less pieces than the previous game. Lindo tells everyone her daughter is Waverly Jong, not because she wants to gain attention, as Waverly thinks, but because she is proud of her daughter and wishes for everyone to know.
3. Amy Tan uses symbolism in this chapter. The “strongest wind cannot be seen” is what Lindo Jong taught to her daughter Waverly Jong. The strongest wind is used as a symbol. When Waverly is playing chess, she hears voices telling her which side to blow the wind from, voices that only she can hear, which her opponents cannot hear. At the end of the chapter, Waverly played against her opponent, who sent Waverly rising up through the air and out the window.
4. The main conflict in this chapter is man vs. man. Waverly and her mother have an argument because to Waverly, her mother is trying to use her to gain attention and to show off. Lindo, however, feels that she is only helping her daughter, and that there is nothing wrong in telling everyone that Waverly Jong is her daughter. Waverly shows her weak side when she argues with her mother about this. Unlike chess, she cannot defeat her mother, she is forced to run away.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008 2:32:00 PM  
Blogger Kimmy T said...

1. The pawn became the queen
2. Rules of the Game

3. I thought that this chapter was interesting to read and I liked seeing how Waverly’s hard work at studying every aspect of chess paid off for her. As she became better, I could see her head become bigger and full of air. I thought she became very annoying and thought that she was better than her family just because she is very skilled at a game. I thought it was unfair that her brothers had to sleep in the living room while Waverly got a bedroom to herself. It made me think that Lindo, her mother, thought that she had much more ambition or talent than her brothers and I think that a mother should view all her kids equally, no matter how successful one of them might be.
I could identify with Waverly a little when she felt embarrassed when her mom kept on showing her off. Sometimes my mom shows me off to my aunts or uncles and I hate it. I feel embarrassed just like how Waverly did. I didn’t like how Lindo took her daughter’s strength at chess as her own success.
I thought it was cool how the element, wind, came up in both chapters of “The Red Candle” and “Rules of the Game”. I think that it shows the reader that both Waverly and Lindo have invisible strength and are very sly and clever. Like how Lindo uses her observations to get out of her marriage, Waverly uses techniques and strategies to win at chess (and to select a good gift). By drawing this parallel between Lindo and Waverly, the readers can see that the daughter is really like the mother.

4. I would describe the relationship between Waverly and her mother as disrespectful and unappreciative. Waverly never appreciates what her mother does for her. In the beginning she “bit back [her] tongue” (89) whenever she disagreed with her mother or wanted something she couldn’t have. Waverly was appreciative of her mother because she knew that her mother wanted to “help [her] older brothers and [her] rise above [their] circumstances” (89). Waverly actually does rise above her circumstances when she starts playing chess well but she doesn’t even reference back to the person who helped her do it: her mother. She doesn’t bite back her tongue anymore and argues with her mother, not showing respect for her. An example is when her mother stands over her shoulder when Waverly was plotting her games. Although Lindo is only standing there because she “[thinks] of herself as [Waverly’s] protective ally” (101), Waverly thinks she’s annoying and tells her mother to go away, which is a very disrespectful thing to do in Chinese tradition.

5. Amy Tan uses symbolism in this story at the end of the chapter. When Waverly describes her chess battle with an opponent that she made up in her head, it actually symbolizes the rift between her mother and her and their battle with each other. In Waverly’s imaginary chess game, her chess pieces “fell off of the board one by one” (103) while the opponent’s pieces were advancing towards Waverly’s side. The opponent symbolizes her mother and the opponent’s pieces defeating Waverly’s pieces symbolizes that her mother will always know more than Waverly because Waverly is still a child even though she is excellent at chess.

6. (b. What is the main conflict in the chapter?)
The main conflict of this chapter seems to be human vs. human, which makes it external. The only conflict in this story is between Waverly and her mother. This is outlined in the chess match between them that is imagined by Waverly. Her opponent is Lindo which shows that the battle taking place in the story is between Waverly and Lindo.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008 3:58:00 PM  
Blogger Trung said...

Trung Tran
The next move
“Rules of the Game”

1)This chapter was not that exciting to read but my first reaction to the story was when I found out Waverly Jong, also known as MeiMei, was only nine years old. It surprised me to see such a young child winning so much chess tournaments and competing with fifty year old men who have so much wisdom and experience -especially since chess is a complex game that takes strategy and patience to win. I felt like I could relate to MeiMei when she walked with her mother to the supermarkets just so her mother could show her off. Stereotypically, Asians love to brag about their kids and to compete to see which kids get more A’s or awards. My parents are just MeiMei’s mom. I always get embarrass when my parents brag about me or my sister when we accomplished even the littlest thing, like learning how to play a new piano song. It shocked me to see MeiMei’s reaction when she could not take her mom’s bragging any longer. Even worse, the way she talked back to her mom was very disrespectful. Her mom was just proud of her, so proud that she even let her stop doing her choirs or not finishing her dinner. It disappointed me when the chapter ended with the conflict not resolved.

2)The relationship between MeiMei and her mom is everchanging. At first, her mom teaches her to never talk back and to “bite her tongue”. However, as the plot advances and MeiMei start playing chess, she changes and starts to argue with her mom. Her life is like a chess game and her opponent is her mother. If she made the wrong move, like when she talked back to her mom and ran away, it would dig a deeper hole for her. In the end, when it said what was her “next move” it seemed like MeiMei has to decide what she has to do next to escape from her opponents trap or learn from her mom’s punishment.

3)In this chapter, Amy Tan used symbolism to describe MeiMei’s life. MeiMei’s life is like a chessboard and her opponent is her mom. When her chess pieces “fell of the board”, it meant that her mother has “won” and she knew she was wrong. It was wrong of her to talk to her mother that way. She has to think of her “next move” to prevent from losing and to fix what she did wrong.

4)The main conflict in this chapter is internal human vs human between MeiMei and her mom. The story began with MeiMei’s mother teaching her to be this and that. Never talk back and always listen. When MeiMei can stand her mom’s bragging, she talks back and confronts her mom. It seems as though MeiMei and her mom cannot understand each other because of MeiMei’s embarrassment of her mother.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008 11:47:00 PM  
Blogger MMMMymy_ said...

1. “A Chess Prodigy”
2. Rules of the Game
3. In my opinion, Waverly Jong is a misunderstood child when she was younger. She spent much time with her brother, and probably that’s where she got her tomboyish attitude. Instead of playing doll games, she prefers playing chess. Also, she was the one who stepped up to toy with an American tourist. Usually, that was not girl behavior. Living with a mother who came from China, there were certain etiquacy and smarts her mother wanted to teach her. For example she exclaims “wise, guy, he not go against wind. In Chinese we say, we come from South, blow with wind…Strongest wind cannot be seen (89).” I think she tries to teach Waverly that it is best to discreetly get what she wants and not hastily do anything. Surely I think Waverly got annoyed by her mother’s confusing rambling, but she knew her mother only wanted the best for her. On the other hand, her mother didn’t understand Waverly’s life, and just thought she was an ignorant child. Consequently, she tries to control everything Waverly does. Through Waverly’s amazing talent to play chess, she gained much respect and won many trophies. Her mother takes pride in her daughter, bragging about her to anyone she met. This made Waverly really upset, and she shouted at her mom. I thought it wasn’t appropriate for Waverly to shout at her mom for being proud. She could’ve simply spoken to her mother at home to fix the problem. Instead, she makes a scene and runs away. I can understand that Waverly was really angry, but it was a little immature of her to make such a big deal out of the situation. When she comes home, her mother says out loud that if she doesn’t care about her family, then they shall not care about her. This is where she goes into her room to rethink the hasty decisions she’s made. She remembers her mother’s words “strongest wind cannot be seen”, and thinks about what she should do next to solve her problems. For a child at such a young age, I think she is very bright, but I sympathize for her because she has to deal with a stubborn mother who doesn’t even bother to listen to her.

I was a little confused when Waverly mentioned the “Chinese torture”. What was it? And why did her mother make Americans seem like such terrible people all the time? Lastly, did Lindo Jong know for sure Waverly would come back? Why didn’t she make an attempt to find her?
4. The relationship between Waverly and Lindo Jong can be described as fragmented. Waverly never describes her mother as loving or caring, the way a mother should be. Her mother scolds her for wanting to buy salted plums, and later tells her to throw away the gift she gets from church. The two also don’t seem very close; Waverly is always spending time with her brothers, while her mother is some place else. When they do spend time together, no affection is shown. Her mother is either lecturing her with Chinese proverbs, or trying to teach her how to live her life. When Waverly wins her chess matches, Lindo only takes her as trophy to brag in public. Lastly, when Waverly had enough of her mother’s arrogant attitude, she runs away. Even then, her mother does not care to go after her. Instead, upon Waverly’s arrival home, Lindo admits that she doesn’t want to care about her daughter. They don’t have that mother-daughter bond that all families should have.

5. Symbolism is a very strong technique in this chapter. Amy Tan uses the game of chess to represent the relationship between Waverly and her mother. “The chessboard seemed to hold elaborate secrets waiting to be untangled” just like the actual relationship of Waverly and Lindo(94). The two lived with each other, but it wasn’t until after she becomes a chess prodigy that Waverly discovers how her mother really feels about her. She realizes her mother and she were like a battlefield, and they were the chess pieces fighting against each other on the board. The relationship between them was like a never ending game, where Waverly would use her own skills to defeat Lindo, but Lindo would stick with her main theory of “strongest wind cannot be seen” and always counter Waverly. Thus, no one actually wins over this game.
6. The main conflict in this chapter was man vs. man, concerning the rivalry between Waverly and her mother. Throughout the chapter, Waverly’s mother always scolds her, and tries to control her life. As Waverly grows up discovering her talent in chess, she fights back with her mother. She learns that she has to take a stand for herself instead of getting pushed around all the time. Sadly, in the end the conflict is not resolved.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008 12:05:00 AM  
Blogger spiderlaurie said...

Check Mate
Rules of the Game

1. I could empathize with Waverly’s mother when she wanted to reject the chess set that Vincent had brought home from the Christmas party. A lot of times people donate used and usually unwanted things to charity, but they don’t realize that if they themselves didn’t want it, why would others? I felt really bad for Waverly when she felt really awful when her mother stopped talking to her. Waverly didn’t realize it at the time, but what she yelled at her mother really hurt her feelings. Instead of just reprimanding her and then forgiving her as Waverly thought her mother would do, her mother in a way acted as though she was washing her hands of Waverly. I think she must have felt really lonely that night all by herself without the support of her family.
2. Waverly and her mother are always nagging at each other trying to persuade the other one to change. Waverly’s mother is always trying to make Waverly improve in what she does even though it annoys Waverly to no end. Waverly always tries to make her mother become less nosy and intrusive of Waverly’s business. These two have a unsatisfied relationship. They never really take the time to appreciate the good in each other.
3. I think that Amy Tan uses chess to symbolize the relationship between Waverly and her mother. Her mother, is, in a way, the silent wind which Waverly actually uses to defeat others in chess. Waverly is always loudly protesting against her mother, but she never realized how much her mother’s approval and support means to her. Once her mother stops talking to her, Waverly feels cornered by her mother even though her mother is technically not even doing anything.
4. I think the main conflict in this chapter is human vs. human. Waverly and her mother are always battling with each other because their personalities are so different. Waverly’s mother is always trying to parade Waverly’s accomplishments around while Waverly wants to just fit in with society and not stand out.

-Laurie Jeng

Wednesday, December 31, 2008 8:57:00 AM  
Blogger Maria.uHHH. said...

“Pawn vs. Queen”
CH. Rules of the Game

3. After reading this chapter, I felt that Waverly’s situation with her mom is a lot like mine. I can relate to Waverly’s feelings when her mom is always peering over her shoulders and acting like a “protective ally” (100). However, Lindo Jong’s intentions were probably always good, but she just didn’t know how to express her care for Waverly the right way. As Waverly became more spoiled by her parents, her attitude also changed dramatically. From a carefree and shy girl, she turned into a quiet and solitary person. She “no longer played in the alley of Waverly Place… [or] visited the playground where the pigeons and old men gathered”, everyday after school she would go “directly home to learn new chess secrets, cleverly concealed advantages [and] more escape routes” (100). It was as if her whole entire childhood life had been snatched away right when she became a child prodigy and her daily life began to revolve around nothing but chess. Why was Waverly so engrossed with chess that she was willing to exchange her childhood life for a collection of trophies? And why was she so blinded by chess that she didn’t see everyone in her life slowly drifting away from her?

4. I would describe the relationship between Waverly and Lindo as loving but with a sense of rivalry. When Waverly is still young in the beginning of the story, she listens and obeys her mother’s lessons. For example, in the scene where Lindo teaches her that the “strongest wind cannot be seen” (89), she remembers that lesson her whole life; however, as Waverly grows older and becomes obsessed with chess, she starts to use that lesson against her mom. In the last part of the chapter when Waverly imagines the black men marching and destroying her white pieces, she gets carried up by a wind and plots her next move in order to beat the opponent on the other side, her own mom.

5. In this chapter, Amy Tan uses a lot of word choice in her dialogues which makes it more attention-catching and interesting to read. Sometimes she also incorporates similes and metaphors to give our imagination something to envision and compare to.

6. I learned a lot about the Chinese local color in this chapter. The place where Waverly lived with her family had a lot of small shops in the dark alleys surrounding it. One of them was an herb shops and another was a printer shop. It reminded me of the streets in Taiwan where, on every block, there would be rows of various types of shops.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008 2:00:00 PM  
Blogger christinehwang said...

My Greatest Opponent

Focusing on: Rules of the Game

As I read about Waverly Jong's mother, Lindo Jong, in this chapter, I grew extremely annoyed towards her "proper Chinese humility." Her "humility" was in a sense merely "painted" onto her solid figure of pride. An example of this was shown when Waverly's brother received an old, piece-missing chess set, and Lindo Jong, said, " 'Cost too much,' " 'Too good,' " in front of the elderly chess set owner, when in reality she really meant," 'She not want it. We not want it,' " and demanded that her children throw it away. Through analyzing Lindo, I came to realize that politeness was similar to the flattering and boosting of another person's self-confidence, in that both are done for one's own good . Apart from annoyance, I was also slightly offended by the scene in which an old man automatically thought that Waverly wanted to play dolls with him because she was a girl. Though it may seem like nothing serious, this scene affected me because I was exposed to the fact that these type of thoughts, or in other words sexism, is injected into peoples' brains through society and not through their own ideals.

One phrase to describe the relationship between Lindo and Waverly is "coach and athlete." I chose to use this description instead of "mother and daughter" because I believed that their relationship was based on a give-and-take or in other words it was as if Waverly's role in the relationship was to obey her mother, and her mother's role was to set out a plan for Waverly to follow and to push her to follow it. Just like an athlete, if Waverly did not follow her mother's plans, in other words her coach, there was most likely to be conflict and possibly a break in the relationship. Just like this, Waverly and Lindo's relationship was constantly on the edge once Waverly became a chess player and Lindo became her "mentor" or "supporter." One scene that represents this is situation is when Lindo goes to Waverly's first game. Though she may have not been interested in chess before, once Lindo sees her daughter play, she becomes obsessed with chess, her daughter's playing and starts to criticize Waverly's playing techniques. Though some may see this relationship as a common mother daughter scenario, I think that it's a type of relationship that would be most commonly seen between a coach and an athlete.

A writing technique that Amy Tan uses in this chapter is personification. An example of this is: " I remember that his sweaty brow seemed to weep at my every move" (100). Tan was really just trying to say that the man was sweating very heavily every time Waverly made a move on the chess board. Her choice of connecting the action "weep" with the noun "sweaty brow" not only helped put an image of a man sweating very heavily, but also let me imagine an exaggerated image of a clump of hair crying its eyes out.

I believe that the life lesson of this chapter is basically, "Speak up when its necessary." Lindo Jong teaches Waverly that the "art of invisible strength" is "biting your tongue" or in other words not speaking out about your own desires. Even though Waverly becomes very skilled at this, she is unable to contain her anger and frustration after her mother's continuous overbearing, prideful remarks about her chess playing. Even though Waverly knows that her mom will get pissed off, she still chooses to speaks out and literally runs away from her mother. Though the outcome is not all that great, Waverly admits feeling, "light" and basically "free" suggesting that she does not regret having expressed her feelings to Lindo.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008 2:06:00 PM  
Blogger Joanna Trinh said...

It's called Skills.
“Rules of the Game”

1. Waverly Jong said that the “dark alley” was the “best playground”(90). I thought that was very strange since I've always imagined dark alleys as really scary places where someone could get murdered.
Waverly's mom is really stereotypical because she said that the Chinese people were “not lazy like American people”(92). Not all Americans are lazy. I mean, look at all the athletic stars we have in our country. They owned the Olympics.
I also think Waverly's mom is a very fake person. She honestly thanked the old lady from church who gave Vincent a chess set, but when she returned home, she told him to throw away because since an old lady doesn't want it, they shouldn't want it either. She's too full of herself.
I was surprised that this guy's mom slapped him after “his face fell with... undisguised disappointment” after he found out that he only received 10 pennies in his Christmas present from church (93). I don't think mothers in America are even close to being that strict.
I wonder what “power” do chess fans see in the pieces because I've never learned how to play before (95). I hope I don't become too addicted if I do.
Sometimes Waverly's mother can be smart, I guess. I agree that at times, you just ought to keep your secrets of success to yourself. But most times, I think people win by skill. There's no secret to getting good grades; you just study hard and pay attention in class.
Bobby Fischer is mean. He said that “there will never be a woman grand master”(99). I think women can be better than men at many things if we put our heart and mind into it.
I think Waverly was completely in the right mind when she let her mom know that she didn't like it that her mom was using her to show off. Rubbing your success in other people's faces is sad. So what if they don't have what you have? Waverly was really successful, so many people already know, and don't need to be reminded.

2. I think Lindo really loves Waverly and wants her to be successful. She allowed her to participate in the chess tournament. For Waverly's first tournament, her mother gave her her chang, “a small tablet of red jade which held the sun's fire”(98). I think the chang was important to her mother, and it was very thoughtful of her to give it to Waverly. Lindo even sewed two pretty dresses for Waverly to wear to her tournaments. Lindo was probably trying to tighten the bond with her daughter when she was “standing over [her] while [she] plotted out [her] games”(100). Maybe she wanted to be a part of Waverly's success, or understand her better.

3. I liked it when Amy Tan used personifications in this chapter. One of them was when she said that “the chessboard seemed to hold elaborate secrets waiting to be untangled”(94). Using personification really makes the story more interesting. Another personification was when she said that Waverly “could see the yellow lights shining from our flat like two tigers' eyes in the night”(102). That was pretty cool.

4. I think the life lesson in this chapter is that if you don't know but want to know why someone tells you to do you do something, then you should do it yourself to see why. Or if someone tells you don't do something, you can do it to see why that person told you to not do it. The scene where Lindo was talking about the “American rules” after flipping through the instruction booklet of the chessboard reveals this (95).

Wednesday, December 31, 2008 5:12:00 PM  
Blogger tatztastic said...

Brian Tat
Period 7

The Art of Invisible Strength

Rules of the Game

When I read the first opening parts of the story repeatedly, to my anger, I simply did not understand about the principle of invisible strength or keeping her mouth shut did anything about the small bag of plums. I grew confused as I read it repeatedly, if she was trying to get her mother to buy the salted plums or reject it. I, being a chess player, however, felt intrigued to listen to more of the story, as chess was an accelerated talent I kept. It was pretty depressing to me to find out that Waverly was named after a street that she lived on. Did her mother just close her eyes before thinking about the name and suddenly decided to name it the first object her eyes set upon? When I read “my family called me Meimei,” I thought to myself that even in my Chinese family, we called my sister Meimei as well (91). I chuckled a bit when I read “show and never tell” because it reminded me of Ms. Wood’s worksheet “Show Us, Don’t Tell Us.” It reminded me that like in writing, we have our own “invisible strengths” that the reader must seek when we show. On page 98, I felt that Lindo’s improper use of the American language allowed the reader to distinguish the line from others and discover its true meaning. When I read the line, I thought that this was the theme directly noted meaning that it is a shame if you fall down when nobody pushes you. In other words, it meant it is a shame if you give up, because of your own fear and not by somebody’s insults. This chapter gave me motivation to pick up my own chess set and start playing.

In a way, Waverly and Lindo’s relationship felt as thought it was boasting. Waverly felt that her mother wanted to brag about her daughter’s success as if it was her own. Lindo, however, was proud of her daughter’s achievements and Waverly only misinterprets her pride for she wants chess to be her own separate achievement.

Amy Tan uses repeated symbolism in the short story, and makes the “Rules of the Game” connected to “The Red Candle.” In the first passage of the story, Lindo lectures Waverly the importance of invisible strength by comparing it with the element wind. Waverly uses this concept of invisible strength in chess to gain her wins by concealing her own strength and secrets. In a way, readers can debate that Waverly gained invisible strength through her mother. In “The Red Candle,” Lindo takes control of her own fate by concealing the news of the servant girl’s pregnancy, hiding it as her own strength. I believe that symbolism in this short story really unites Waverly’s story with Lindo’s story to make the whole book seem weaved. The symbolism gives the story a new perspective for readers to search for and truly fortifies the bond between mother and daughter.

The main conflict in the story is Man vs. Man of when Waverly argues with her mother about the topic of chess. Waverly feels that her mother is taking glory for her chess skills making it seem like she is leeching of what Waverly sees as personal strength. When Waverly strikes at her mother about the topic of chess, however, she shows her weakness. I know this, because it was basically the only rising conflict that appeared in the short story. Waverly’s chess matches weren’t even a conflict, and there was no threat to Waverly besides her mother.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008 9:35:00 PM  
Blogger Nila said...

1. "Go with the Flow, Stay with the Day"
2. "Rules of the Game"
3. In my opinion, Waverly's story was very entertaining to read. I could not peel my eyes off the pages with such rich text development and how easily her plot flowed. I especially enjoyed how clearly the relationships between Waverly and her family members are portrayed.
4. Waverly and her mother, Lindo, share a relationship as any stage mom and her actress daughter share. In the contemporary language, these women are dubbed "momagers" – meaning the moms of up-and-coming teen actor or singer manage their children's careers. Since Waverly IS found such success in the game of chess at such an early age, it is only Lindo's first instinct to be proud that her daughter has brought such honor to the family name. After all, honor is a very important aspect in the Chinese culture. Lindo is so pompous of her daughter's achievements that she goes around from town to town and shows Waverly off. Waverly, on the other hand, hates this and admits the feeling attacked. When Waverly confronts the issue, it causes some tension within the household.
5. Waverly's vignette particularly had an abundance of imagery, which I love. The way Amy Tan describes the alley's "fragrant red beans" and its population consisting of "old-country people… cracking roasted watermelon seeds with their golden teeth" (90) really acknowledges her consciousness to detail and the reader's personal benefit to it.
6. (d. How is this chapter connected to the allegory at the start of the section?)
In the opening allegory, the little girl on the bike stops at nothing to disobey her mother. As the defying girl, Waverly chooses to challenge her mother in this vignette. Because her daughter is such a success at the game of chess, she goes around town flaunting her, proudly displaying her daughter and showing her off for all to see. Waverly, however, doesn't like the way her mom, Lindo, acts. She takes this in as her mother invading her space and achievements, which she views as her own, independent triumph. While Lindo is only proud of her daughter, Waverly sees it as annoyance.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008 11:16:00 PM  
Blogger Ha Duong, Period 6! said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

Thursday, January 01, 2009 2:05:00 PM  
Blogger Ha Duong, Period 6! said...

“Strongest Wind Cannot Be Seen”

2. WAVERLY JONG: “Rules of the Game”

3. At the beginning of this chapter, I felt comforted by the way Waverly Jong spoke of her mother. From the past chapters and Amy Tan’s allegories, I thought that the children would discount the knowledge of their mothers and thus not appreciate their mothers. But the way Jong spoke of her mother made her sound as though she really appreciated all of the knowledge her mother had given to her as a child, and it seemed as though she understood why her mother had raised Jong and her brothers the way she did – it seemed like Jong understood her mother’s intentions. It warmed my heart to see that Jong saw her mother as someone that knew what she was doing while raising her children.

Another part of this chapter that stuck out to me was when Jong asked her mother what Chinese torture was. I thought the way Jong’s mother replied was kind of confusing, but I really liked the way she replied: “‘Chinese people do many things,’ she said simply. ‘Chinese people do business, do medicine, do painting. Not lazy like American people. We do torture. Best torture’” (92). At first I didn’t get it, but after rereading the part a few times, I interpreted as meaning that the Chinese were better at undergoing torture. I guess this section, in a way, hit me hard because from the way I saw it, it was saying that the Chinese had to go through a lot (back in China and now in America) and now they had all gone through so much that they could take “torture” – hardships, challenges, etc. better than the “lazy American people”. They had gone through so much that “torture” was now put on the same level as jobs and leisure activities, just something they went through from time to time or maybe even on a daily basis.

Jong’s mother, Lindo Jong, struck me as a strong-willed woman, that knew her values, morals, and who she was. When Vincent Jong, Jong’s brother, received a chess set for Christmas, Jong’s mother was upset about the gift, telling Vincent to throw the game away, saying, “‘She not want it. We not want it (94),” because it was used and was missing two pieces. She refused to let her and her family be treated in that respect, being given leftovers. Also, Jong’s mother always had a reply for Jong’s questions, and sometimes even Jong’s actions. Once, when Jong told her mother she was not going to participate in Chess tournaments because she thought her mother would not let her, her mother replied saying, “Is shame you fall down nobody push you (98),” which shows that Jong’s mother had good morals and just enough pride; she wanted her daughter to be able to stand up on her own and to not give up before she even lost. Her will is also shown in the chapter “The Red Candle”, which I thought was really cool because Jong’s mother’s characteristics are consistent in both as she is strong in both “The Red Candle” and this chapter.

I felt really sorry for Jong’s mother when Jong “admitted” that she was embarrassed of being her mother’s daughter. Mostly, I felt sorry for her because her own flesh and blood was embarrassed of her, but also because of Jong’s mean retorts, when she told her mother to learn to play chess herself (although in the beginning Jong says that her mother was the one that really “taught” her chess, but she did not know it at the time). The way Jong discounted her mother’s capabilities and her mother in general was disappointing to me, especially after all her mother had done for her – raising her, letting her play chess, etc.

At the end of the chapter, when Jong sees her mother as an opponent, I was excited and I suppose, happy for Jong’s mother, because I felt it was the start of Jong seeing her mother as an equal, someone worthy of respect.

4. From this chapter, Waverly Jong and her mother’s relationships could be described as understanding. Though Jong does not initially understand her mother for the majority of the chapter, as shown by her embarrassment of “being her daughter”, Jong reveals her understanding of her mother that later developed at the beginning of the chapter as her, “mother [had] taught [her] the art of invisible strength. [The] strategy for winning arguments, respect from others, and eventually, though neither of [them] knew it at the time, chess games” (89). The fact that Jong knows that her mother was the one that taught her this shows that she, though not initially, understands her mothers intentions as she oversaw Jong’s life growing up. Jong shows additional understanding of her mother when she says, “My mother imparted her daily truths so she could help my older brothers and me rise above our circumstances” (89). Jong truly knows what her mother wanted her to accomplish in life as a person. Her mother also understands Jong as she reacted in a way that got Jong thinking after Jong had told her mother it was an embarrassment to be her daughter – Jong’s mother knew what to do in order to make her daughter realize that she was a respectable opponent, not only in Jong’s imaginary chess game, but also in real life.

5. In this chapter, I notice that Amy Tan uses symbolism, representing Waverly Jong and her mother as the two missing pieces of the chess set. The two missing pieces from Vincent’s chess set were a black pawn and a white knight, and at the end, when Jong is imagining a chessboard where her and her mother are opposing one another, Jong represents herself as the white pieces, and her mother is the black pieces. If this is related to the black pawn and the white knight earlier in the chapter, Jong would represent the white knight, while her mother is the black pawn. Knights are highly recognized, valued, etc, like Jong as she is a national chess champion, while pawns are just mere minions, pieces that are often sacrificed in order to move forward, but are underappreciated, like Jong’s mother whom is not appreciated by Jong; rather, Jong considers her an embarrassment. Despite the low status of the pawns, they are still capable and extremely useful and vital to the win of a chess player – without them the course of “battle” could take a turn for the worse. These chess pieces symbolize the positions of Jong and her mother and how they relate to one another; although Jong may be a “knight”, she may have not been able to accomplish her “goal” without the help of her mother, or a “pawn” (Note: In chess, knights can jump over pawns, moving without them – Jong discounts her mother, moving over her like nothing.). Jong doesn’t realize how important and vital her mother really is until she grows older. Also, the colors that are given to each character also symbolize them. Jong’s mother is represented as the black pieces of a chess board, and black tends to represent things that are not pure. This depicts Jong’s mother well, as she is aged and experienced; she has gone through unimaginable things, darkened with age and blends in with the shadows as her children did not see her as they were growing older. Jong herself is represented by the white pieces of a chess board, innocent and incapable as she did not understand and know her mother at her young age. Tan depicts both characters well using symbolism, improving the quality of the chapter using common things to show the relationships and characteristics of the two most important characters of the chapter. The symbolism gives us a deeper look on their relationship, and shows us the significance of the events that surround Jong. It improves the chapter as it is much more interesting to delve into than just plainly saying, “Jong does not appreciate her mother.” The symbolism complements the events that occur in the story, allowing flow, twists, and weaves in Tan’s work.

6. The main conflict of this chapter is human vs. human, which is between Waverly Jong and her mother, Lindo Jong. This is shown throughout the chapter as Jong and her mother oppose each other after Jong gives her mother the message that she is embarrassed to be her own mother’s daughter, especially because Jong’s mother is always telling others that Jong is her daughter, showing her off. Jong’s mother sees nothing wrong with doing so, and thus Jong runs off. Due to this, Jong’s mother is further upset with her and thus they begin their own “chess” battle. Their opposition is clear as Jong’s mother takes control of the family, telling them not have any concern for Jong, saying Jong does not care for their family either, and thus Jong, “[ponders her] next move (103),” at the end of the chapter. The conflict between them is built up slowly with the information that takes up the majority of the chapter; the entire chapter was created to lead to the conflict between them, and so makes this the main conflict of the chapter.

Thursday, January 01, 2009 2:50:00 PM  
Blogger kristin x] said...

What chess prodigy?
The Rules of the Game
1. This chapter kind of reminded me of my sister. She was interested in chess when she was in 4th grade, and my mom was so happy that she was, but I was sitting there thinking whoop-de-doo, heather can move pieces around a chess board. That’s kind of how Waverly is treated. She gets all this special treatment and stuff from her mom because she’s good at something. I think her brother’s feel left out, and kind of mad, because it was their chess set that Waverly played with and got so good. I would be mad if my sister got special treatment for something that I got her interested in. But Heather (my sister) doesn’t like chess anymore; Waverly kind of drops her habit at the end of the chapter too, because her mom gets too competitive with it. Why do parents get competitive about something their kids do anyways, its like, “LOOK AT HOW GOOD MY KID IS, YOU SHOULD ALL FEEL BAD NOW.” I hate when people try to put down other people like that…
2. Waverly and her mom have a sort of stereotypical Asian mother-daughter relationship. Lindo wants her daughter to be the best, and she puts a lot of pressure on her, but Waverly just does chess because its fun, then she gets stressed from her mom and doesn’t see the fun in the game anymore, so she quits. I think this is very stereotypical because most of my friends who are of Asian descent complain about how their parents pressure them for good grades and perfection. Waverly isn’t pressured for grades, but a great game of chess.
3. There’s kind of a symbolic meaning to the title of this chapter. Tan calls it ‘The Rules of the Game,’ and she talks about chess. The end of the chapter uses chess pieces to symbolize a fight between Lindo and Waverly. After Waverly runs away from her mom for the day, there’s tension between them and they fight. There’s also a reoccurring line: “Strongest wind cannot be seen,” something Lindo tells Waverly a lot about how to win things in life. This could be interpreted as Lindo saying she won because she is stronger than Waverly, or it could be another reminder that Waverly must learn to be strong through problems in her life.
4. I think this chapter and the allegory share the defiance of a little girl. In the allegory, the girl disobeys her mom, wanting to go around the corner of the black, but does it so hastily, she never reaches the corner. Waverly also defies her mom, but it is after she becomes a chess prodigy. Her mom flaunts her daughter’s gifts, which make Waverly embarrassed, so she runs away, ignoring her mom’s calls. By the end of the day, she “falls,” just like the girl in the allegory, and goes back home, where her mom ignores her for her defiance.

Thursday, January 01, 2009 11:16:00 PM  
Blogger Tina Truong said...

1) Sixty-four Black and White Squares
2) The Twenty-Six Malignant Gates “Waverly Jong: Rules of the Game”

3) My first reaction upon reading this chapter was that Waverly Jong was a child who respected her mother. She wasn’t white-washed enough to forget that responsibility. However, I was a little disappointed with Waverly’s back-talk later on in her vignette. She seemed to show change and that change presented her with a rude personality. Waverly used the fact that she was getting special treatment to make excuses for herself and I really don’t think that that was fair. She lied to be excused from dinner and it didn’t seem as if she felt the least bit guilty that her brothers had to sleep in the living room when she complained that the “bedroom [she] shared was so noisy that [she] couldn’t think,” (101). It is true that she worked hard for that position, but it may be that she went too far. I also think that Waverly was a little too smart for a six-year-old girl. I don’t know how to force that to make sense in my mind. I know some children in my family who are five-six and they barely know half of their numbers from one to one hundred, let alone memorize strategies for playing chess and then becoming a national chess champion by the age of nine. Oh my goodness! That’s crazy! I couldn’t help but feel that Waverly and I are still alike in a way. I seriously can’t concentrate when doing homework or something when there is someone staring at me as I do it. Whether they are staring at my work itself or just at my back, I can’t think. It’s not like I’m doing anything wrong or committing a crime, but it just makes me nervous.
And about Waverly’s mother… yeah… I don’t know, but my mom isn’t very much like her. I mean, my mother watches what I do, she hopes I do my best and she also expects a lot from me, but when I succeed, she doesn’t brag about me at all. And thank goodness too! She says that she knows I do well and try my best, that is enough for her and that she doesn’t need any “oh, that lady has a famous/smart daughter and what not.”

4) I would describe the relationship between Waverly and her mother and distant and not understanding. Their backgrounds are different and so are their viewpoints starting from her mother’s life in China to Waverly’s life in Chinatown, San Francisco. It may be that her mother always wanted someone by her side as a child because of the hard times in China, so she thinks that her daughter would want that too. She always stood around and watched Waverly as if she was her daughter’s “protective ally” (100). Waverly on the other hand, never experience what her mother went through and as an American child, she wants a sense of independence. She wants the freedom to figure out things for herself. Waverly doesn’t understand that without her mother, she probably would have never got where she did. Still, through all that confusion among one another, it is clear that her mother loves her. I think that a mother’s love comes truly when she tries to give her child an understanding of life and want for him/her to learn a lesson that he/she may keep and remember forever. Although Lindo Jong ignored Waverly when she came home at the end of the vignette, she might have also wanted for her daughter to learn the importance of respect. “We not concerning this girl. This girl not have concerning for us,” (103) was heard from Lindo before Waverly walked off to her room. There, Waverly imagined her mother as her “opponent” (103) and indirectly, I think that it means she finally realized and respected her mother for who she was—a person who could do what she set her mind to.

5) One technique that I noticed Amy Tan using in this chapter was word choice—especially that of Lindo Jong’s American English. It really jumped off the page for I personally despise obvious grammatical mistakes, but its usage fit into the chapter because it created character for Waverly’s mother. Just by reading her dialogue, we instantly know that Lindo’s English isn’t the best, yet she is still understandable and it also formulates interest.

6) (a. What is the theme or life lesson in this chapter and which line or scene reveals this?)
I think that the theme in this chapter is that respect is important and we have to be careful of what we do or say because everything is cause and effect. There will a consequence. I thought that that must be so because throughout the story, Waverly’s rudeness didn’t get her anywhere. Towards the end when she finally came home from running away to nowhere because she really had nowhere to go, her family ignored her. In her mind and imagined game, her mother was her opponent, the one who made her “white pieces… [fall] off the board one by one,” (103). Her mother, or the person who was supposedly her mother, said that the “Strongest wind cannot be seen,” (103). That hinted at the fact that you have to think about your words and actions; since the “strongest wind”, meaning a great force, “cannot be seen,” you don’t know what it knows. It may come back to haunt you.

Thursday, January 01, 2009 11:21:00 PM  
Blogger Brendan said...

Rules of the Game

1. My reaction to this chapter was that the girl abandoned everything, and she was abandoned at the end. She was a brilliant chess player, and she was spoiled, she worked hard for everything, but she didn’t have to do chores. She was better then everyone else, so she was embarrassed with her mother. She was a genius, she learned, she worked hard. In a way this was a good thing, but it seemed to me that she abandoned her family, and vice versa at the end of the chapter. I thought this chapter was really interesting because it was based on chess and its secrets. I think that chess is a brilliant game that requires a lot of though and thinking strategically. I personally love strategic games, so this chapter was really interesting to me. Chess is a game that can present a lot about life, and can be compared to real life situations. The way Amy Tan used it in this chapter gave it a lot of meaning how Waverly wanted to find and learn the secrets of each of the pieces.
2. I would compare the relationship between Waverly and her mother, more of servant and master. Her mother just cleans her trophy and doesn’t really teach her morals of life and doesn’t really scold her. She seems more like a servant because she just disapproves; she doesn’t have expectations or doesn’t yell at her. I don’t think there relationship is very strong, Waverly seems like she doesn’t care about her mother and doesn’t appreciates her very much.
3. I like the way Amy Tan uses word choice in this chapter, such as when she’s describing the butcher shop. The “bloodstained” and “gutted” gave off a disgusting connotation. She also made the butcher sound so cruel and heartless when they said all the meat were “freshest”. I think being a butcher is a disgusting job because how can someone be so heartless as to slaughter an animal, it’s horrifying.
4. The conflict in this chapter was more of Human vs. Himself. Waverly was battling herself “plotting her next move” as she said at the end. She was a person who thought of everything like they were on a chess board; she constantly though of what she was going to do next.

Friday, January 02, 2009 1:14:00 PM  
Blogger Elise N. said...

2.“Rules Of The Game”
3.Out of all the chapters I’ve read so far, the Jong family seems to be the most sane and clear-headed. Lindo seems like an overall good mother that taught her children intelligent and wise views in life, but I thought she was too ostentatious (if you’ve read on to “Two Kinds”) about her daughter’s talent, even though it is clear that Waverly has a great gift. No one doubts that. I don’t think this chapter was too eventful or interesting, but I’m certainly glad that it was calm and for the most part, peaceful, because I needed a break from the upsetting, morbid stories. Although this chapter was rather uneventful in my opinion, I was able to relate to Waverly when she complained about her mother’s presence near her while she worked; it’s completely frustrating when you have someone on your back, examining everything you do. I thought an entertaining highlight of this chapter were the names of chess moves that Lau Po taught Waverly. “Throwing Stones on the Drowning Man” and “The Surprise from the Sleeping Guard” were definitely humorous, and yet I could imagine a vague sense of what the moves might look like.
4.I think Lindo and Waverly Jong have a fitting mother-daughter relationship, despite the bitter argument they had. Lindo is a sharp, wise mother that tries to pass down her knowledge to Waverly. She tells Waverly to “bite back [her] tongue” because as a child, she should not talk back with her mother. In return, Waverly acknowledges her mother’s words and puts them to good use, understanding the “rules of the game” in order to have things the way you want them to be – in other words, your bag of salted plums. The second way I would describe their relationship is progressive. Although there is an irritable edge when Lindo shows Waverly off too much, I find that they are good for each other in the long run. Lindo pressures and expects Waverly to do better, telling her, “Next time win more, lose less (pieces)” (98), but what parent doesn’t want their child try harder? While Waverly is annoyed at how her mother sees the game, I think that Waverly, on the inside, strives to perfect her skill and continue to have better and better victories. Her mother’s comments may be annoying, but surely they are harmless because Waverly herself wants to keep improving.
5.The best part of this chapter was when Waverly described her first tournament game, against the fifteen-year-old boy from Oakland. I thought the personification made it very intense, as well as the slight hyperbole, “He is blind now” (98), because her opponent was probably not able to see her upcoming move. I think these two techniques improved the chapter because they made the reader see how exciting and grand the game of chess was for Waverly.
6.I think the allegory of the Twenty-Six Malignant Gates is about trust, respect, and obedience between a mother and daughter. It says to me, simply, that if you don’t listen to your mother, you’ll fall off your bike, or fail at what you are trying to do. In Waverly’s case, she does not disobey her mother’s advice; she bites back her tongue, and refrains from openly wanting things. This gets her the salted plums she wants. Then, by listening to her mother’s words once again, she “[finds] out why” (95) for herself, and applies the strategy that the “strongest wind cannot be seen” (89) to her chess game, and succeeds at it. By doing the opposite of what the little girl in the allegory does – paying attention to her mother’s words and not questioning them – Waverly becomes a national chess champion.

Friday, January 02, 2009 9:56:00 PM  
Blogger PeterThai said...

1. Steps to the Best of Chess
2. The rules of the game
3. Reading this chapter, I got out that chess could be fun. Waverly Jong started out clueless about the game of chess but slowly became the best. I was amazed at how she entered many tournaments at such a young age of nine, and also defeating many players. Before I actually read, I never thought she would become good at chess rather just knowing how to play the game. I think that from the beginning of the chapter to the end, Waverly becomes so addicted to play chess it was her daily activity after school. In a way, you can say chess ruined her life or gave her something to be proud of for being good.
4. The relationship between Waverly Jong and her mother seemed that most of the time her mother was annoying and Waverly dislikes her. Her mother would be proud and want to show off how good her daughter was by going to the grocery shopping and telling everyone but she would be annoyed and herself being shown off giving a reason to hate her mother. Her mother would always be there when she practices playing chess giving her no sense of privacy which Waverly also disliked. The relationship between those two are close in a way, but unappreciated.
5. One of Amy Tan’s writing technique is symbolism. She uses the board game chess to show Waverly and her mother’s relationship. The players were Waverly and her mother and the chess pieces clashing together were conflicts in between. The game goes on until at the end, where Waverly uses what she knew to go against her mother, which was not clear of who won.
6. I think the main conflict is human vs. human between Waverly and her mother. Waverly started chess and practiced because she wanted to enjoy playing the game itself and not to brag about while her mother, who intrudes in her life, tries to make her better for the reason to show off to people about how she has such a brilliant daughter playing chess.

Friday, January 02, 2009 10:02:00 PM  
Blogger Tiffany said...

Tiffany Vuong
6th period
1. The Next Move
2. Rules of the Game
3. When I was reading the passage where Waverly explains how flat the sanddabs were and how her mother had told her the story of the girl who was crushed by a cab and quoted her mother “was smashed flat (91),” it really shows the lack of emotion her mother has toward her. How old was she when her mother had told her that story? I guess as long as the story her mother is telling has a lifelong lesson to learn is basically all that matters. Waverly does all this research and discovering on the game chess and I think goes back to how she loved the ally because it was adventurous and mysterious. She is one of those curious children, when they have a question they always have to discover answers for their questions. I actually enjoyed reading how the mom was handling her daughter’s victories. Her mom was respectful, not being a sore winner and wasn’t rubbing it in the admirers’ faces; she kept calm full of pride and simply said, “Is luck (97).” I thought this chapter was pretty typical because generally when a child enjoys an activity and tries to make something of it, the parents usually become obsessed in always winning and I feel like the parent are trying to get their children to live their dream. I understand where Waverly’s mom is coming from, she is proud of her daughter for all the victories in the tournaments, and I felt that Waverly was being a brat when she left her mom at the market while her mom was helping the old lady pick up the items off the ground. I also felt the mom was putting a little too much pressure on her. The mom was telling her how she wanted Waverly to play and I felt that her mom didn’t really know the rules to chess and she was getting a little angry when Waverly’s opponent ate several of her pieces.
4. I think Lindo and Waverly’s relationship is jumbled. In a way you know Lindo loves Waverly because at first when Lindo was in the crowd watching Waverly play she was really proud and her attempt to helping Waverly with her chess strategies. However, when Lindo is trying to help Waverly, she’s a bit aggressive with her ideas; Lindo doesn’t really have a sense of the rules but still believes Waverly shouldn’t let her opponents eat her pieces. She doesn’t understand and also she doesn’t listen to Waverly when she explains that she has to sacrifice pieces in order to continue her strategy.
5. In this chapter the life savers I feel symbolizes Waverly and her mother’s relationship. In the ally, where she loses several of her life savers to Lau Po and the loss of life savers made Waverly and her mom’s relationship move further apart. Chess is merely caught in between their relationship.
6. The main conflict in this chapter is external (human vs. human) between Lindo and Waverly. Waverly was mainly mad at her mom because Lindo made it seem like Waverly was successful with chess because of what she had taught her, when really it had nothing to do with the mom. Lindo was always there to basically cheer Waverly on. Her comment on not letting her opponents take many of her pieces was not very helpful.

Friday, January 02, 2009 10:20:00 PM  
Blogger Andy Lam said...

1.Downside of Being a Child Prodigy
2.Rules of The Game
3.I discovered that Lindo Jong came to San Francisco after she devised her brilliant plan to leave China. She remarried and had 3 children, 2 sons and 1 daughter. I was left hanging after the chapter “The Red Candle”, and I wondered what happened after she left. Now, I discovered that she’s leading an ordinary life in America and has a family, which means her life is stable. I was happy that she had a stable life considering what she had to go through to leave her arranged marriage. Then, I read about life for her daughter Waverly Place Jong in Chinatown as a youth, and I was surprised that it was better than I thought because I have been to Chinatown in San Francisco numerous times and I didn’t think it was a very nice place to live because all the buildings were very cramped and the living conditions were not very appealing to me. She had many adventures in her neighborhood looking and discovering many things, something I don’t have in this nice urbanized area that I live in. Then I was taken by surprise when Waverly became a National Chess Champion because I didn’t think that becoming interested and studying Chess can get someone that far. I enjoy playing Chess myself, which is why I wished she were real so that I could learn Chess strategies from her. Then as her fame grew, so did her mother’s desire to show off her famous daughter. I could understand why Waverly wanted to run away, because her mother was being unreasonable and got mad at things that she didn’t say. I personally wouldn’t have ran away, but instead I would’ve kept trying to reason with Lindo. In the end, when she returned home, I also thought that she deserved being in trouble because her family probably worried a lot about her.
4.The relationship between Lindo and Waverly wasn’t very close. Lindo didn’t seem to care too much about her daughter, until she became a Chess champion, where she would show off to everybody around her that her daughter Waverly was a Chess champion, as described by Waverly herself that “My mother would proudly walk with me, visiting many shops, buying very little. ’This is my daughter Wave-ly Jong,’ she said to whoever looked her way” (100). It seemed like Lindo only cared for her daughter when she was famous and focused on her when she was special and made Lindo look good. Lindo seemed like a selfish mother.
5.Amy Tan used foreshadowing in this chapter, when she described Waverly’s growing interest in Chess and her studying Chess in books at libraries. It foreshadowed that Waverly would become a great Chess player, in which she soon became a Chess champion.
6.The main conflict in this chapter is human vs. human. Waverly didn’t like to become a trophy for her mother to display around to everyone, because she didn’t like all the attention, but Lindo had other thoughts. She kept showing off to everyone until Waverly couldn’t handle it and burst like a bubble, running away from her mother and hiding for a long time until she returned home at night.

Friday, January 02, 2009 11:06:00 PM  
Blogger Vivian Tran said...

1) The Strength of Strategy
2) Rules of the Game
3) I think that Waverly getting special treatment from her mother is just something all parents do. Because she has a gift, her mom tries to encourage Waverly and to accommodate to Waverly’s demands: “My parents made many concessions to allow me to practice,” (101). I really identify with Waverly, especially with the way that she must bite back her tongue when her mother criticizes her but eventually gets annoyed enough to snap. In the beginning, with the scene talking about how Lindo would buy the plums Waverly coveted from the week before but had not asked for this time, I think about my mom. I think of how rewards are earned and deep down, all mothers really love their children. But then, I think of how Waverly is frustrated and embarrassed that her mom shows her off as more of a tool, even though I’m sure that it is just how she knows to be proud of her daughter. The “hmmm” sound that Lindo makes after seeing the move that Waverly has chosen to make isn’t meant to get to Waverly but it does. I couldn’t see it in Lindo’s earlier chapter, but she is just like my mother, earnest and full of love, but the clash of cultures between her and her daughter conflict, causing misunderstandings. And while I relate to Waverly a lot, I think she’s a bit selfish to tell her mother that she’s embarrassed, after all, she should know that it’s just Lindo’s way of showing pride in her daughter.
4) I would say that Waverly and her mother have a relationship seen as “strained”. Although they love each other, Waverly has been treated with so much favoritism that she almost has an attitude of arrogance. She openly shows her frustration to her mom despite the fact that Lindo only wants to be of help. Even though it may seem like Lindo only wants to show Waverly off because she is gifted in chess, when Waverly complains about being embarrassed, Lindo is hurt, asking if Waverly was ashamed of being her daughter (101). Lindo loves Waverly and while Waverly loves her mother, their ideas and actions are so far apart that their bond gets distant as Waverly grows up.
5) Amy Tan uses a bunch of imagery in this chapter. She describes Waverly’s home to the point where you are standing by the door, smelling “frangrant red beans as they were cooked down to a pasty sweetness” and the “heavy odor of fried sesame balls” (90). You can peak in with the children and watch as the “insect shells, saffron-colored seeds and pungent leaves” (90) are handed to customers in the medicinal herb shop. For those of us who have never seen Chinatown like me, this is a refreshing look into what I could expect, at least if I were in the 1960’s.
6) In this chapter, there was a lot of local color. I know now that the Chinese have meals of sweet curried chicken and red bean pastries. The houses in Chinatown were on top of stores and shops. The Chinese believe in medicinal herbs to cure them of their ailments, which are supposed to be better than the western medical advances. People would throw roasted watermelon seeds at the pigeons as they cracked them open with their teeth. The restaurants had displays of roasted ducks hanging, with their heads limply dangling from the hooks. And I learned a Chinese word, “meimei”, which means “little sister”.

Friday, January 02, 2009 11:09:00 PM  
Blogger Steeveen said...

1. Life of a Chess Prodigy
2. Rules of the Game
3. I was shocked at the fact that for a girl at such a young age to be able to become a chess prodigy over such a short period of time is amazing. She was able to beat her opponents one after another and continued on her victory path all the way to the finals. I remembered when I first fiddled with chess pieces; all of it came as confusion to me. However, for Waverly Jong, it was different. Instead of putting it down and walking off to a nearby typical doll or jump rope, Jong chose to go and stimulate her fascination of the world of chess. She read countless books about chess, with each book learning a new fact or technique on how to defeat her foes. Jong proved to us in this chapter that she is in fact an intelligent young girl. Aside from her hobby and skills of chess, Jong also grew up in an atmosphere in which boys were dominant. Like her brothers, Jong jumped and ran instead of playing dollies or brushing her hair. She was more of a tom-boy than a girl which frustrated her mother. Throughout her whole life, Jong was faced with comments and life lessons made by her mother, teaching her how to be more feminine and less loud and obnoxious. Though some of the comments were really good and might be useful, Jong set them aside and took them in as annoyance.
4. The relationship between Jong and her mother is not a typical mother-daughter relationship. I find that when her mother tries too hard with her daughter, it becomes an annoyance to Jong. She finds her mother bothersome during her chess practices, her mother’s praises and boasting, and her long lectures on etiquette and feminism. Though her mother tries to connect to her daughter and the things she does, Jong does not appreciate it. Jong rather consider it as annoyance and discomfort. Jong’s mother is under-appreciated.
5. In this chapter, Amy Tan uses symbolism portraying the chess game to Jong’s life. All her life she makes decisions, just like deciding whether which chess pieces to move. If she makes the right move, then she wins. If she doesn’t make the right decision, she loses. Her opponent, just like in the game, is her mother. Both of the two are constantly at each other’s throat. In her chess game, Jong must make a decision against her mother and that is when she decides to run away from her mother during the incident at the market. She ended up losing because when she came home, her mother no longer concerns about her and basically throws her to the side. Jong had made a bad decision and therefore, lost her “chess game” with her mother.
6. The conflict in this story is human vs. human. Waverly Jong first started playing chess just for the fun and entertainment itself. However, her mother intruded upon her and turned her love and enthusiasm for chess into something she resented and found as annoyance. Jong’s mother’s constant nagging and bragging of her drove her nuts and basically made she resent her mother.

Saturday, January 03, 2009 11:01:00 AM  
Blogger jpoon said...

“Blow from the South”
Rules of the Game

1. I feel that this first opening chapter to the second half of the book is not as entertaining to read as the previous four chapters about the mothers. Maybe it’s because the mother’s had more adventurous and emotionally moving stories about coming to America rather than a story about a daughter facing problems with being raised by her typical Chinese mom. Even though the read was not as interesting, I was still able to relate to the chapter in some ways. I found it funny when Waverly Jong was first learning how to play chess and kept on questioning why the rules were the way they were. It reminded me of when I was little and kept asking “why?” after each sentence someone spoke. The use of Life Savers to replace the missing chess pieces brought me to remember the times I used pennies to replace missing checker pieces. How Waverly went grocery shopping every Saturday also reminded me of all the Saturday mornings I spent grocery shopping with my grandma. When Waverly said, “I wish you wouldn’t do that, telling everybody I’m your daughter,”(101) I immediately knew something was going to go wrong. I have learned that even thought parents can be embarrassing sometimes, you have to learn to accept it because they are after all your parents. I wonder if Lindo will still continue to give Waverly the cold shoulder or forgive her.

2. The relationship between Waverly and her mother, Lindo, can be described as the typical Chinese mother and daughter relationship. Lindo plays her motherly role by doing Waverly’s hair and making her look presentable on tournament days. Lindo also has high expectations for Waverly in winning the chess games with the fewest pieces lost. She too teaches her daughter through Chinese proverbs. Waverly always respects her elders and tries to do her best, although the two occasionally get into an argument.

3. In this chapter, Amy Tan uses great personification. In the scene of Waverly’s first tournament, the wind directs Waverly through her game by telling her what to do. It really added to the vibe of the room and made the game more intense.

4. Like the allegory at the start of the section, this chapter is about a daughter who questions the ways of her mother and then disrespects her. In the end, the daughter ends up some how getting hurt.

Saturday, January 03, 2009 12:09:00 PM  
Blogger yehray said...

1. Checkmate
2. Rules of the Game
3. I thought this chapter was quite interesting. I liked how Waverly was fascinated by the game of chess in the beginning but ended up ruining her relationship with her mother. I also thought that Lindo Jong, Waverly’s mother, was being very obnoxious. She kept on marching around Chinatown announcing that her daughter is a chess champion. I also believe that it was the mother’s own arrogance that deteriorated their relationship. If she hadn’t made Waverly’s chess playing such a big deal, they would have been far happier.
4. Waverly and her mother seem to have a good relationship at first. Waverly enjoys playing chess and her winnings at tournaments make her mother proud. However, as Waverly wins more contests and starts to gain more fame, she feels that her mother is using her and take credit for her success. This makes Waverly so mad that she runs away from her mother. When she finally comes back home, their relationship worsens since her mother would not even talk to her. Waverly felt as if she and her mother were in a chess battle and that her mother was winning.
5. Amy Tan uses personification when she describes the imaginary game of chess against her mother that Waverly played in her mind. Black pieces on a chessboard became “black men advancing across the plane, slowly marching to each successive level as a single unit’ (103). This shows how her mother strategically winning the imaginary chess game and was winning the mother and daughter dispute in real life.
6. The allegory at the start of the section explains how a young girl and a mother argue about bad things that could happen outside the house. She does not listen to her mother and ends up falling off her bike realizing her mother was right. Like this chapter, Waverly and her mother argue about her chess playing skills. Waverly does not want her mother to brag about her being a chess champion. This causes Waverly to become so mad that she runs away. When she comes back, she feels like her mother has won the battle.

Saturday, January 03, 2009 12:23:00 PM  
Blogger ashleen said...

1. The Champion of Champions
2. Rules of the Game
3. I was amazed at Waverly’s chess skills and surprised that she was an expert at such a young age! Waverly was so interested in chess that she took the hassle to go to the library and learn how to play. Within just a few months, she discovered a variety of secrets and played in multiple chess tournaments! I think Waverly’s mother had a big hand for her daughter’s success. Lindo encouraged Waverly in every tournament and boosted her spirit. They both had a wonderful relationship, until Lindo boasted her daughter’s accomplishments to others. Waverly wanted to just fit in with the rest of the society, but her mother made her stand out. I felt really sad for Lindo when Waverly told her that she was ashamed of being her daughter. In the beginning of the story, their mother-daughter bondage was really strong, but as Waverly grew up, she also grew distant from her mother and their love was withering away.
4. I would describe the relationship between Waverly and her mother as disgruntled. Waverly’s mother, Lindo, is always trying to improve what Waverly does, even though she knows that Waverly gets annoyed of her actions. Furthermore, Waverly argues with her mother and informs Lindo to stop “telling everybody [that she was her] daughter” (101). Instead of nagging and irritating one another, Waverly and Lindo should take the time to understand each other. They both are too busy trying to criticize one another, that they forget the love and appreciation in their relationship.
5. One of the many wonderful techniques that Amy Tan uses is symbolism. Tan uses this technique to improve her story by indirectly inserting different meanings to the situation to enhance her reader’s interest. Tan uses the chess battle to symbolize the distant relationship between Waverly and her mother, Lindo. Tan, also, uses the opponent that Waverly plays against to symbolize Lindo. In Waverly’s imaginary chess game, her pieces “fell off the board one by one” (103), while her opponent’s pieces headed towards her. The opponent’s pieces defeating Waverly’s pieces symbolized that Lindo would always know more than her daughter, even if her daughter was a champion at chess.
6. I think the main conflict in this chapter is external and it seems to be human vs. human. Due to their different personalities, Waverly and her mother, Lindo, are constantly battling with each other. Lindo always boasts about her daughter’s accomplishments to others, while Waverly wants to just fit in with the people around her. At the end of the chapter, Waverly imagines that she is playing chess against her opponent. The opponent is her mother, Lindo, and the battle in the story is between Waverly and Lindo.

Saturday, January 03, 2009 2:59:00 PM  
Blogger CHELSEA<3 said...

1. Check Mate
2. “Rules of the Game”
3. As I read “Rules of the Game,” I loved how it took place in San Francisco’s Chinatown because I love the city! I thought it was interesting of Waverly’s mother to name her daughter after the place they lived in. I thought that was very original since traditionally, parents would name children after past family members or already have names chosen, not after where they live. I also thought of Waverly as a very intelligent girl. By age nine, she already became a national chess champion! As I read on, it was surprising to realize how similar Waverly’s mother and my own were, especially when Waverly’s mother was bragging about her daughter. I sympathize for Waverly because I, myself, have been in a situation like hers, too. I think Waverly’s mother is just extremely proud of Waverly and she just wants to praise her daughter’s accomplishments. But, I also think her mother went too far with bragging about it on the street, blurting it out to no one in particular, just so everyone could hear. However, I thought Waverly’s outburst to her mother was very disrespectful.
4. The relationship between Waverly and her mother is detached. The two don’t see eye to eye. Her mother comes with Chinese Culture and she tries to pass that on to Waverly; but, she has already been accustomed to American ways and customs. Although Waverly doesn’t admit it or say it, the reader could tell she is embarrassed of her mother when she bragged about her on the street and also bothered when her mother would criticize her chess moves.
5. A technique Amy Tan uses in “Rules of the Game” is symbolism. The chess game Waverly thinks of in her head symbolizes the rivalry between her and her mother. The opponent in her imaginary chess game represents her mother, as “her black men advanced across the plane” (103), where the white pieces represent Waverly. The black pieces defeating the white represent Waverly’s mother knowing what’s best and more knowledge than Waverly because she is a child.
6. The allegory connects to the chapter because in the allegory, the little girl doesn’t believe her mother when she is told not to ride her bike around the corner. The girl didn’t listen because her mother couldn’t show her where in the book it said she will fall; but, the girl fell even before she reached the corner. In this chapter, it connects because Waverly thought her mother didn’t know anything; but, it turns out that her mother knows more than what she think she knows.

Saturday, January 03, 2009 5:39:00 PM  
Blogger Sean Massa XP said...

1. The Queen of the Rules
2. Rules of the Game
3. As I began to read the chapter, I understood that Waverly lived in a pretty crowded neighborhood, like most living in San Francisco, even today. When she said that her family wasn’t poor because they enjoyed daily three five-course meals, I was surprised. I wondered why five course meals were necessary; perhaps because of the large family/guest atmosphere of most Chinese households. I honestly assumed they had a lot of leftovers. Waverly described that the tradesmen above the Chinese restaurant were considered evil by her and her brother. I sincerely questioned this because tradesmen don’t seem like that bad of people; it was probably just her joking in her childhood adolescence. After I read that Waverly was named after the street she lived on, I found this quite funny. I have never heard of anyone else who picked names that way for their child; for instance, what if someone was names Berryessa Road Lin. Once Waverly asked her mother about Chinese torture, I was completely confused about the topic. What exactly is Chinese torture? Was it a communist act? And why did her mother say that Chinese do the “best torture” (91)? When Waverly began talking about her Christmas party at the church, I questioned this motive. Why did the parents go to a Christian church, which was clearly not a native religion in China? Was it out of curiosity for a new religious belief? Or was it for the free English lessons that most churches offer to foreigners? I also laughed at the thought of the Chinese Santa that she referenced. A Chinese Santa would indeed be a perfect example of a certain cultural tradition clashing with another type of ethnical group. After I read that Waverly’s birth year was 1951, I was amazed. I thought: Wow that’s a really long time ago. But then I realized that was the year my dad was born. Waverly described a girl getting a gift of lavender toilet water. I had no idea what in the world it was, but I assumed it was perfume which was usually referenced as “eu de toilette.” Once I read that Lindo Jong wanted to throw away Waverly’s brother’s chess set, because it was too expensive, I was shocked. Why did she want to throw it away, just because the old woman didn’t want it? Millions of used gifts are given to others all around the world, even to this day. A piece of advice that Lindo gave Waverly, about reading the rules in order to know the game, must have sparked something in her that would eventually start her chess obsession with her researching all types of chess related books in the library. This one act Lindo did must have also been the reason for the chapter: “The Rules of the Game.” Throughout the whole chapter I was amazed at Waverly’s devotion to learning the game of chess, every strategy and every tactic in order to come out victorious every time. She even went to the lengths of asking Lau Po, an old man and total stranger, for advice about the game. When Lindo gave Waverly her lucky chang, or red jade, I recognized immediately the importance of jade and the color red in Chinese society, and thus the chang was of great importance. Waverly Jong mentioned that during her tournaments, the wind would tell her strategies that no one else could hear. I honestly questioned if she was crazy, but I just assumed that it was her own conscience, and that she could hear it better from the silence the wind brings. Waverly’s fame amazed me also because she was sponsored before the age of nine and by eventually got her picture in Life magazine, a national seller! Bobby Fischer’s comment about there never being a woman grand master in chess offended me; this was such a sexist and self-absorbed comment. The first reference to Waverly’s parents was made on the bottom of page 98. I found this strange because throughout the story only her mother was referenced. I also remembered that her mother was the woman in “The Red Candle” who escaped from a horrible marriage to a selfish immature man. Because of these facts, I started to ponder about Waverly’s father, who was not once mentioned in the chapter. Shock hit me when I read that Waverly ran away from her mother because she thought her mother was using her as a bragging object. Most parents do this, I know, but running away from one’s parents into a dark alley many blocks away from one’s home seems pretty childish to me; she probably did it as an act of independence from her mother. The last paragraph really left me puzzled because I had no idea what was going on. Was she escaping from her home? I had no idea because so many chess references were made to the writing. Perhaps this was so in order to show Waverly’s thought mentality, turning her whole life and world into one big chess game. Overall, the story was really good because of the details Tan picked out in order to show Waverly’s passion for chess.
4. The relationship between Lindo Jong and Waverly can be described as loving, but also struggling. Lindo loves her daughter, and wants her daughter to be successful in chess and life, so she teaches her to learn the rules in life that one needs to know in order to be triumphant; this shows her love towards Waverly. But the struggle between the two is shown when Lindo gets carried away and begins to brag about her daughter, which really hurts Waverly, causing her to want to leave and gain independence. Overall, Lindo’s motives leave the relationship being concerning, but also hurting.
5. The writing technique that Tan uses to improver her story in this chapter is the use of word choice. She uses her words to bring spice, as well as detail to each line of her story. These are just a few words she uses that spruce up the writing: imparted, well-shined, wood-slat, old-country, gurgling, gold-embossed, sanddabs, recessed, scampered, and many more. In general, Amy Tan’s use of diction helps bring her story to life.
6. a. I believe that the life lesson in this chapter is “You must know the rules in order to win the game.” This can be seen in the title chapter as well. The scene that shows this was when Waverly didn’t know how to play chess, and when her mother Lindo gave her the rules to learn. Lindo told her daughter that people in life expect you to know the rules, so learn the rules in order to get ahead and win. Waverly, in a way, took this advice to the extreme, going to the library to learn every rule of the game in chess, thus she became exceedingly victorious in her tournaments as she became a regional champion.

Saturday, January 03, 2009 6:39:00 PM  
Blogger johnnyappleseed said...

Johnny Chu
Period 7

1. King of the Hill
2. Rules of the Game
3. I am amazed to see how good a little girl is at playing chess. She started at seven when her brother, Vincent, got a chess set from the First Chinese Baptist Church. She became so attracted and interested to chess that she used a dictionary to define the terms of the game manual. After beating her two brothers she became obsessed with chess. She started playing with an old man named Lau Po in the park. Lau Po taught her all of the tricks up his sleeves. Soon she mastered them and even beat him. I find Waverly very attracted to chess and would even play strangers. It’s amazing to see her making it into the national finals for the chess tournament and actually win. Another thing I saw that was interesting was that Waverly Jong’s full name is actually Waverly Place Jong. Waverly Place was actually the place where the Jong’s lived. It’s funny to name a child with a street name or landmark as if it was a memoir of the place where they first lived.
4. The relationship between Waverly Jong and her two brothers is relatively close. Their relationship was not really described too much, but however, in the scene where they played chess together they actually let her play. The relationship between Waverly and her mother was close at first. But as she won tournaments and grew up their relationship started to change. After Waverly won the national chess finals, her mom would just bring her out the street and brag about her daughter. She became disgusted at her mother’s behavior and ran away and later went home noticing that she got in trouble.
5. I noticed Amy Tan using symbolism when she described the Ping Yuen Fish Market. She did it by talking about the fish tanks and the how crowded it was with all the fish and crabs in it.
6c. In Chinese culture parents love to brag and compare their children. In this chapter Waverly was bragged about by her mother and it irritated her.

Saturday, January 03, 2009 8:10:00 PM  
Blogger Rachhhh said...

1. Check Mate!

2. “Rules of the Game”

3. This chapter makes me change sides between Waverly and Lindo often. In some parts, such as when Lindo is announcing to everyone within earshot that her daughter is a chess champion, I am on Waverly’s side. Why does Lindo have to brag about her all of the time? That would be embarassing for any child. Meanwhile, I do not always agree with Waverly. There are times when she is acting like a total brat! Such as when she asks her mother what Chinese torture is as she does Waverly’s hair in the morning.

4. The relationship between Lindo and Waverly is sneaky. They are constantly fighting, but in sly, tricky ways. It reminds me a bit of Waverly’s chess games, always trying to outsmart the opponent. An example is when Waverly publicly humiliates her mother and then runs away. She comes home much later, expecting to be embraced, or at least yelled at. What she gets is the silent treatment from her mother. This “not caring” attitude makes Waverly desperate and confused.

5. Amy Tan uses the chess game as a symbol. It symbolizes the relationship between Lindo and Waverly. They are strategically battling each other in silent, sly ways. At the end of the chapter, Waverly says she “pondered [her] next move.”

6. The main conflict in this chapter is human vs. human, between Lindo and Waverly. Lindo has been strong willed her whole life, since she found her way out of her marriage with Tyan-Yu. She had a strong-willed daughter. They are constantly butting heads and fighting.

Saturday, January 03, 2009 10:40:00 PM  
Blogger Beryllium Baiology said...

1. Invisible strength
2. Rules of the Game

3. I thought that this was not as interesting as Amy Tan could have done. I didn’t really understand the part where her mom would stand over her shoulder and breathe out “hmmmmph” and stand at that door and clear her throat after Waverly told her mom to stop standing over her. It is typical of any parent to want to show off their child if they are incredibly famous but I didn’t really understand Waverly’s response to that. Was it something her mom did? The way she talked? Or just showing off? I mean I guess she can get mad, but I think her mom got a little over the line with getting angry too fast because Waverly seriously didn’t say anything too bad. And the part about floating up into the sky and pondering her next move was also weird to me. Why again? Over all I didn’t really like that much. I think it ended a bit too fast without much.

4. I don’t have any immediate liking to Waverly or her mother. Her mother is kind of greedy for something better. Waverly just doesn’t seem like a nice kid, I guess she can be stuck up too. Lindo tells Waverly to lose less pieces on her next game of chess, and Waverly says you need to sacrifice things sometimes and I agree but then her mom continues and Waverly just stops with annoyance. I know how her mom feels but a stubborn woman is a stubborn woman. And I think Waverly overall throughout this section just doesn’t give me feel of a nice obedient child. I mean, she tricks her mom because Lindo doesn’t understand English that well. She takes advantage of the fact that chess had made her get away with some small troubles at home and receive some luxuries of sleeping alone or even complaining to her mom.

5. Waverly and her mother is symbolized by the pieces of the chess board. Waverly’s opponent in this game is “two angry black slits.” When Waverly confronts her mother during their shopping, Mrs. Jong’s eyes turn into “dangerous black slits.” In the last part of the section, Waverly thinks, “I closed my eyes and pondered my next move.” Her mother taught her to use her will to shape events (which I think is pretty superficial). She now knows that getting what she wants should not be left to fate, but she herself can shape events (….um….physically doing something not lying there and willing to happen)

6.This section relates to the parable in the form of miscommunication between daughter and mother. They are unable to communicate with each other because of barriers in language, personality, and age. It also shows that mother usually has the control but there is a struggle on the daughter’s part to possess that power.

Saturday, January 03, 2009 11:14:00 PM  
Blogger Marjorie said...

1. Missing Pieces
2. Rules of the Game

3. I found out of all the stories I have read so far in Joy Luck Club the most relatable, not in terms of moral or themes, but in character. Waverly Jong’s knack at chess reminds me of an ambition of mine in elementary school that never happened. I’ve played chess for long, that I can’t quite remember the age I started playing. The way that her older brother acts reminds me of my own sister when we used to play chess. When she kept on losing, she would just forfeit and not even bother. I think there were several missing holes or “missing pieces” if you’d like to get thematic that were left unanswered. What did they mean by Chinese torture? And in the café, I didn’t quite grasp what the door labeled “Tradesmen” meant.

4. The relationship between Waverly and her mother is caring yet irritated. Waverly’s mother shows obvious affection towards her by letting her play chess and giving her whatever she requests even though it’s not really necessary such as when she says her room was too noisy so her brothers were forced to move to the living room. That was a little too much. Even though her mother shows support and care, Waverly is annoyed by her mother’s closeness. She gets annoyed when her mother hovers over her while she is practicing and her last strand was when her mother kept on boasting her daughter’s name to everyone.

5. In “Rules of the Game”, Amy Tan uses many metaphors because of the great uses of chess pieces. The way she describes the senseless, inanimate board pieces as ‘captured men in neat rows, as well-tended prisoners’ is a great metaphor that captures a moral lesson. Another good metaphor was the wind which I think metaphors her own conscience because ‘it whispered secrets only she could hear’. The metaphors used in this story improves the moral aspect and lesson because of its connections it makes from literal to figurative. It’s able to bring out deeper context to senseless things and make the reader thing more objectively throughout the story.

6. The theme of “Rules of the Game” is that you may learn and study tactics and tricks to win a game, but if you have no ethics or sensibility then you will never win. Waverly understands how to tactfully win a game of chess, but mentally her conscience does not see what purpose the game is or what it even means. The theme is revealed at the very end while she is hypothetically playing a game against her mother and loses all her tactics.

Sunday, January 04, 2009 2:12:00 AM  
Blogger Kenneth Glassey said...

Games of Life and Chess
Rules of the Game
1) First thing I have to say, its pretty cool to get an idea of how China town looked back when Immigrants were still coming into America. This is serious history going on and she is describing it wonderfully. Hm, though it is interesting how the mother relates the game to life almost. Better to lose less, sacrificing part of your life is not good. Or, that’s what I get out of it. It is interesting how her mother changes though. At the start, she is showing humility, saying it was just luck how Waverly was winning. But, later, she starts showing her off and saying how she was her daughter. I suppose its only natural, but I have to agree with Waverly, it feels like my mother would be stealing credit from me. But, I wonder how she can come to the point where she thinks her mother as the enemy, I would never hate my mother that much. Though, Waverly also gets loses her humility later as well. At first, when she wanted to go to the chess tournament, she said she didn’t have to go. Later, she thinks the best chess player and she gets arrogant.
2) Waverly and her mother. Rivals. Geeze, Waverly seems to make rivals out of everyone. First it was June, now it’s her mother. This is a one sided relationship, only Waverly believes she is against her mother, her mother is just trying to be a mother. They also seem to be having a fight of hidden strength, or that’s what Waverly believes. That’s what that scene at the end of the chapter means, the most dangerous threat is the invisible one, so Waverly believes her mom is threatening her.
3) I think that Amy Tam uses symbols in this chapter to great effect. For example, I think that the Lifesavers, which Waverly bets in the chess games, stand for her vanity. At first, she beats her brothers and she is less humble until she starts losing to Lau Po. After she is done training with him, she wins and wins and gets more arrogant and vain. Until at the end of the chapter she believes that she can fight against her own mother.
4) We learn tons of things about China town during this time period. They still had medicine shops with old Chinese cures like insect shells and seeds. There is the fish market with customers calling out what they want. Americans are still considered tourists in China town, even though it’s in America. There is no mention of cars either, so that means that everything was on the roads and the children played in the alleys and shops. They were also religious too, though I don’t think this family actually believed in God and Jesus, or at least Waverly didn’t. This chapter also has a sense that you need to be humble, with the kid and the money globe, and the mother when she says Waverly is winning because she is lucky.

Sunday, January 04, 2009 12:20:00 PM  
Blogger nguyenvivian said...

1. “If I’m a Champion, Then Why Do I Feel I’ve Lost Everything?”

2. “Rules of the Game”

3. I enjoyed this chapter because we got to see Waverly grow and learn more strategies in the game of chess and in life. I thought how Waverly first got her brothers to let her play chess with them was clever. She wagered her own desirable Life Savers candy to use as missing pieces to get what she wanted. When Waverly went up to Lau Po to play, I liked all the little names for each secret she learned from him. Going to all those tournaments and making sure she didn’t lose, or else “bring shame on [her] family” (98), was very courageous of her. I know I would be scared to take a risk like that. As Waverly grew older and won more and more tournaments, you could tell that the fame was getting to her head. She didn’t have to do her chores anymore and her personality even changed a bit. She no longer “[bit] back her tongue” (89) but instead said what she felt. I can relate to her about being embarrassed about her mother bragging about her, but how she spoke to her mother was rather disrespectful.

4. The relationship between Waverly and her mother would be known as tough love. Her mother may not always do everything in the nicest way possible, but that’s just her way of teaching Waverly something valuable and important. At first, Waverly learned to “bite back [her] tongue” (89) and never talk back to her mother, but as she won more and more games, that seemed to disappear. She began to get more annoyed with her mother, and finally had it in the scene at the marketplace. She was tired of her mother bragging about her, so she spoke up, which led to her mother believing she’s embarrassed to be her daughter. In the end, she ran away for awhile to clear her head. When returning home, her mother says “We not concerning this girl. This girl not have concerning for us.” It seemed as though her mother was shutting her out, but I think she was really just teaching her a lesson.

5. I think Amy Tan uses symbolism in this chapter to describe the game of chess. Physically, it’s just a game of strategy that Waverly learns and excels in, but symbolically it was all the challenges she had to face and get around. In the last scene where Waverly has her dream of the chess board, the chess pieces symbolized her and her mother, and the fight they were enduring. The symbolism created a new and unique way to look at the conflict between the two.

6. This chapter provided quite a bit about Chinese culture. I learned that people lived in little houses on top of stores, and that some food they sold in Chinese bakeries included dim sum, red bean pastries, and fried sesame balls. Their markets had crates and crates of different animals in each, much like our seafood supermarkets here. And one thing I didn’t know was that the Chinese had different rules than the Americans in chess.

Sunday, January 04, 2009 1:10:00 PM  
Blogger Jessica said...

1. The King has Fallen!
2. "The Rules of the Game"

3. As I was reading this chapter, I was happy to see that it involved chess. Chess used to be one of my favorite pastimes when I was younger and I was happy to see that I could understand most of the terms used in the book. I was amazed by Waverly Jong's gift of playing and creating strategies. I was fun for me to read about her "adventure" in the chess tournaments. On the other hand, I feel that Waverly's mother behaves just like my own mother. I can relate with Waverly's sense of annoyance with her mom when she watched her play. Whenever my own mom hawks over me, I also feel angry and feel like asking for some space.

4. The relationship between Waverly Jong and her mother can be described as annoying. The two characters are close, but they're too close for comfort. It reminds me of when a child tells another person to "get out of their bubble". Waverly's mom tries to show her off at the supermarkets and Waverly resents these acts. I have a feeling that she feels that her mom is acting a bit stuck up with all the bragging she is doing.

5. In this chapter, Amy Tan uses symbolism. The object mentioned the most in the chapter is the chess board and the game in general. The chess board represents Waverly and her mother's relationship. The pieces in the game symbolize their conflicting feelings and actions towards each other, always fighting to gain an upper hand. At the end of the chapter, Waverly is shown going against her mother in an imaginary chess game, but it is unclear to who actually won the "game".

6. In this chapter, the main conflict is human vs. human, or Waverly against her mother. Waverly wants to have fun while playing chess and she wants to live like a normal kid. On the other side, her mom constantly brags about Waverly and how she's a great daughter and pushes her to do things that she wouldn't want to do willingly.

Sunday, January 04, 2009 1:32:00 PM  
Blogger carmen c. said...

1. “The Humble Servant Who Kills the King”
3. In the beginning of the chapter, I thought I could relate to Waverly. The Ping Yuen Fish Market is somewhat similar to marketplaces in my country. The market my family and I go to to get food in my country sell fresh produce everyday. Butchers would wear white smocks and gut fish and cut meat right in front of buyers. I chuckled when Waverly mentioned that Santa Claus was not Chinese. I felt that it wasn’t right for Waverly’s mother to pressure her each time Waverly won a tournament. Playing chess is something Waverly does for fun and all she needs is people to support her instead of pressuring her to win more prizes and games.
4. The relationship between Waverly and her mother can be described as parallel. Both are very intelligent. Lindo Jong was clever to make up a creative dream to escape her husband’s family. Waverly, on the other hand, is a bright person who has talent at playing chess. She used a dictionary to look up terms she didn’t understand about chess and went to the Chinatown library to borrow books in order to master chess.
5. The way Amy Tan incorporates dialogue in this chapter really improves the story. It is clear that Lindo comes from another country because she her sentences are not clear and correct. Waverly is born in america and didn’t have to go through an arranged marriage like her mother. Amy Tan also uses similes. When Waverly returned home after she ran away from her mother, she “could see the yellow lights shining from [her] flat like two tigers eyes in the night” (102). Dialogue and similes trigger my brain to paint the scenes and how they sound like.
6. I believe that the main conflict in this chapter is human vs. human. Lindo and Waverly are mother and daughter whose relationship struggles here. Waverly has a problem with her mother showing her off because she wins lots of chess tournaments. Waverly also doesn’t like the fact that Lindo annoys her when she is trying to concentrate on strategizing for her next game. Lindo, on the other hand, doesn’t see anything wrong with boasting to everyone about Waverly. The way Lindo grew up and how Waverly adapted to the American way of life clashes and therefore tension arises between mother and daughter.

Sunday, January 04, 2009 2:33:00 PM  
Blogger PamelaY said...

1. “White Verses Black”
2. “Rules of the Game”
3. I think it was cute that Waverly Jong as a little girl wanted to play chess with a random man next to the playground. I was amazed at her constant victories against opponents who were much older than her. I thought it was annoying how her mother didn’t understand the rules of the game, yet always wanted to brag. When she kept telling people that her daughter’s chess wins ‘“[were] luck,’” I wondered if she could learn to do something so she could brag about her own achievements (97). I was amazed when “Winston and Vincent had to do [her] chores” (99). It is almost like saying “you are useless, so you do the menial tasks.” Do all Chinese parents go by that system?
4. The relationship between Waverly Jong and her brother, Vincent, can be described as adorable sibling love. This is shown when “Vincent explained the rules, pointing out each piece” to her (94). He cared enough to show her how to play the game, but at the same time he made fun of her by asking “‘Why is the sky blue? Why must you always ask stupid questions?’” (95).
5. In the end of this chapter, Amy Tan used imagery to describe Waverly Jong’s imaginary chess game. Her “white pieces screamed as they scurried and fell off the board one by one” (103). It means that she was being defeated in the imaginary game she was playing against the two angry slits.
6. c. I am learning that for common Chinese winning courtesy, they claim that it was luck and not skill. I also learned that Chinese parents love to brag about their children’s successes. The last thing I learned was that some Chinese people are proud and dislike receiving hand-me-downs, such as the chess set. ‘“She not want it. We not want it,’” she had assumed stubbornly (94).

Sunday, January 04, 2009 4:49:00 PM  
Blogger dark bad dan said...

Dan Truong
Period 06

Stolen Pride
(on “Rules of the Game”)

3) “Rules of the Game” was a somewhat amusing chapter to me. The way Lindo Jong expressed her opinions was funny. I was a little annoyed at how ignorant Lindo was. It reminded me of my mom, who likes to think she knows about something but she really doesn’t. I liked the way Lindo taught her daughter. Waverly might not have known it, but without Lindo, she wouldn’t have had the patience and the ability to defeat her opponents using “invisible strength”, which was how Lindo came to bypass her parents’ promise without breaking it in “The Red Candle”.

4) I would describe the relationship between Lindo and Waverly Jong as misunderstanding. The two do not understand each other. Waverly does not realize that her mother is simply trying to teach her, but it is also Lindo’s fault for teaching her in such a way that she wants Waverly to find out on her own. For instance, when Lindo tells Waverly and her brothers that they should not follow the rulebook that the chessboard comes with because they tell you all you need to know. She is saying that you need to figure out the rules on your own. However, Waverly does not listen to her mother and follows the guidebook anyway.

5) Amy Tan uses symbolism in this chapter. The “strongest wind” is used as a symbol. Waverly’s mother teaches her invisible strength, and the “strongest wind” represents whenever Waverly uses that invisible strength to defeat her opponents. When Waverly is playing chess, she hears voices telling her which side to blow the wind from, voices that only she can hear, which her opponents cannot hear.

6b) The main conflict in this story is between Waverly and her mother, Lindo Jong. This is an external conflict, human vs. human. Lindo constantly begins to brag a lot about Waverly and this causes Waverly to be embarrassed. They cannot understand each other and struggle throughout the vignette. The conflict is not resolved by the end of the chapter.

Sunday, January 04, 2009 5:36:00 PM  
Blogger Krasivaia Natasha said...

1. all in black and white
2. rules of the game
3. When Waverly was told that the strongest wind cannot be seen. I wondered how that could apply in other instances for her. then, when she learns to play chess she used the technique to find tournaments. The way that Amy Tam allows Waverly to learn this idea by wanting a bag of plum candy is interesting
4. Waverly’s mother is very proud that her daughter is a champion at chess. But, she always seems to be bragging and showing her off to people. Waverly must have put up with this for a king time and finally got fed up. By, running away all of the sudden she is challenging her mother. Waverly’s mother should not have been so boastful.
5. the chess pieces symbolize the fight Waverly and her mother had. In her bedroom after running away she has a dream that her white pieces are being chased by her mother’s black ones. The use of symbolism shows how they are both plotting against each other.
6. the allegory matches this chapter in that the mother won. Waverly thought that her mother would be the first one to give in and allow her to play chess again. But, when her first tournament after the fight begins she realizes the ease has gone away. When se tried to go against her mother, she fell.

Sunday, January 04, 2009 6:28:00 PM  
Blogger Katie said...

1.The Child Prodigy

2. Rules of the Game

3. I really loved the beginning of this chapter. I loved the way Tan described where Waverly lived. It seemed so exciting and interesting. All the shops and sights made me really want to just travel there and spend a day exploring; even though I don't think just spending one day will allow me to soak in all the things that alley had to offer. I liked the idea of having a special place for under-privledged children to go and recieve presents during Christmastime. The fact that being smart and not greedy got the children the best presents made me smile. In the scene where the boy gets slapped by his mother made me smirk because that's what greedy children deserved. It was cute how Waverly thought of the idea of replacing the missing pieces with lifesavers. The chapter started getting confusing when Waverly's mother started talking in her broken English. I had to re-read the paragraph a couple times to get a faint idea of what she was trying to say. This might be the reason why Asian immigrants tended to get made fun of. Waverly must've been very intelligent to become a chess champion at the age of 9. I could really relate to Waverly when her mom showed off that she was a chess champion. My friends' parents always compared me to their kids. I'd be really embarassed if my mom bragged about my accomplishments to my friends and relatives.

4. The relationship that Waverly and Lau Po have is one that a teacher and a student may have with each other. Waverly learns a lot of Lau Po and he tests her skill and knowledge. He doesn't go easy on her and she learbed from experience. He teaches her skills in the game of chess and she learned to become a much better chess player. Not only did she learn skills but she learned manners in the game of chess. Lau po really made an impact on Waverly because she becomes a chess playing prodigy. She would never have been as good if she never met him, just as all good teachers influence their students.

5. A writing technique Tan uses is word choice. The words she uses are very powerful and impact the mood and setting in which the story takes place. The word choice is not only powerful, but it really helps the imagry of the story. Everything in the story is more exciting and interesting because of the superb word choice. Word choice makes any story more memorable and worth reading, including this chapter.

6. The main conflict in this chapter is human vs. human. The conflict is between Waverly and her mother showing off the fact that she's a chess champion. Her mother isn't so obvious about it at the beginning, but as time goes by, she doesn't maintain her modesty and tells anyone who would listen. Waverly confronts her mother about what she thinks, but her mother doesn't understand what she means and becomes angry. This leads into another conflict which is also human vs. human

Sunday, January 04, 2009 6:36:00 PM  
Blogger Sara said...

1. The Opponent who Always Wore a Triumphant Smile
2. Rules of the Game
3. After reading this chapter, my first reaction was that I felt sorry for Waverly Jong. Stereotypically, her mother is the one always expecting respect and praise from others. It was unfair for her mother to twist Waverly Jong’s words when she tells her mother that her bragging is embarrassing but her mother interprets that as her being “embarrass[ed] [to] be [her] daughter” (101). It bothered me when Waverly accidentally bumped into the woman causing her to drop her groceries and they called Waverly stupid for it. Waverly Jong has to constantly bite back her tongue while her elders don’t have to think twice about how they treat her. I also thought that Waverly Jong was quite remarkable because even at the age of nine, she learned to beat players that have had much more experience than she has had. It takes a lot of perseverance and passion to achieve such a title.
4. The relationship between Waverly and her mother can be described as disconnected. They don’t have an open relationship and it seems that they can’t relate to one another. Although her mother loves Waverly, she also sees Waverly as a trophy. She likes attention and embarrasses her without taking her feelings into consideration. Waverly is always reluctant to share her feelings because she is scared of disappointing her mother.
5. In the end of this chapter, Amy Tan uses symbolism to compare Waverly’s mother to the opposing chess pieces. It shows the struggles and lessons that Waverly has yet to concur. By showing the “black” chess pieces knocking down the white pieces with little effort, it shows how strong her challenge is. The angry slits” and “triumphant smile” are intimidating but Waverly has to go beyond what people have taught to overcome her greatest opponent, her mother.
6. The main conflict is human vs. human. Waverly gets in a fight with her mother because her mother is continually bragging about her daughter. Her mother feels hurt but tries to cover it up with anger. Waverly feels like she can never win and her mother, having more power, is clearly winning.

Sunday, January 04, 2009 7:33:00 PM  
Blogger Tracy Nham said...

1. Watch out, Bobby Fischer.
2. Rules of the Game
3. I liked this chapter because of Waverly’s character growth. You can see the gradual change in her personality and attitude. In the beginning, she was obedient and wouldn’t talk back to her mom when she was annoyed. Towards the end, she became spoiled and rude, ready to go against her mother. Almost every single one of Waverly’s mom’s dialogues was in broken English which, in my point of view, is pretty annoying. Although she is focusing on helping her children rise above the circumstances, shouldn’t she be speaking more Chinese preserve her culture and pass it down to her children?
4. I would describe Waverly and her mom’s relationship as rewarding. In Waverly’s case, her mom told her lots of advice that helped her in the future. She was also exempt from doing chores and finishing dinner. In her mom’s case, her daughter received lots of recognition and fame, to which she enjoyed because she was able to proudly show off her daughter.
5. Amy Tan incorporated some similes into this chapter. In one of them, Waverly compares the yellow lights in her flat to “two tiger’s eyes in the night” when she returned after running away. The simile adds to the mood of the story. It brings forth a foreboding, dangerous air to the scene and shows Waverly’s hesitancy of going home.
6. The main conflict of this chapter is external, specifically human vs. human. After gaining fame as a child chess prodigy, Waverly is becoming more and more suffocated by her mother’s attention. When she wants to practice alone, her mom would be “standing over her”. It annoyed Waverly and she basically told her mom to go away. She became annoyed and embarrassed more frequently because of her mother.

Sunday, January 04, 2009 8:14:00 PM  
Blogger Peter Lai said...

1. Your Move

2. Rules of the Game

3. This chapter wasn’t all that exciting or interesting to read, but it does have its moments. When Waverly Jong picked her Christmas present, she noticed that “the big gifts were not necessarily the nicest one”(93). Her awareness to this, I think, showed her logical way of thinking and how she would build a strategy to winning, although the present she chose wasn’t the nicest one either. Her way of thinking excelled her in the game of chess. It was interesting to see a nine year old competing with the older, experienced players, and yet she still won. Her mother, proud of her young chess prodigy, loves to flaunt her around. This reminds me of my mother, always aware of my accomplishments and using them as a bragging tool or to compete with her friend’s children, or sometimes my friends. She would ask me what sort of classes my friends took, what kind of grades they get, and then she would always ask this one question: “Are your grades better?” or simply, “Are you better?” I didn’t like the ending of this chapter either, mostly because it ended without resolving the problem. The ending just left us, the reader, wondering about what could’ve actually happened. Waverly, upset of her mother’s constant bragging of her, talked back to her mother. I thought this was truly disrespectful, but I understand how annoying it may be to have someone use you to brag.

4. I would describe the relationship between Waverly and her mother as misunderstanding because of their background. Waverly, born in America, and her mother, born in china, both have different ways of thinking. Her mother, of course, doesn’t understand Waverly’s behavior when it comes to personal space. She keeps bragging about Waverly not knowing how embarrassing it is for her. Waverly, though, is blind to how much her mother loves her. She does these things because she is proud of Waverly.

5. Amy Tan’s word choice with Lindo Jong’s speech bothers me. These grammatical errors create that scene where a real Chinese mother speaks to her American daughter, I understand that, but it’s just awkward to read them the way they are, to me. Nonetheless, her word choice characterizes Waverly’s mother well as a wise, traditional, Chinese woman.

6. The main conflict in this chapter is human vs. human; Waverly against her mother. It begins with Waverly becoming a prodigy in the art of chess, but changes into a dispute between Waverly and her mother. Waverly was getting tired of her mother’s constant bragging and revolted against her mother, and in the end running off. Waverly returns, but this conflict was never solved in this chapter.

Sunday, January 04, 2009 8:20:00 PM  
Blogger Raman said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

Sunday, January 04, 2009 8:39:00 PM  
Blogger Raman said...

“My Next Move”
Rules of the Game
1. I thought this chapter was very relatable to me. The way that Waverly’s mother shows her off to all of her friends reminds me of how my dad always brags about me to everyone within hearing distance. I’d think it was just fatherly pride, except for the fact he doesn’t do it to my other three siblings, just like Waverly’s mother. Like Waverly, I sometimes feel that it is all I am good for. Another thing I could relate to was how no matter how well Waverly did, her mother was still not satisfied. My parents are constantly not satisfied with me being the best; they want me to be perfect. Even then they can still find something to criticize. Also, when Waverly’s mother starts giving tips that don’t help, I was reminded of me parents. They always think they know how to do what I do, but in reality, they probably couldn’t to it better than I could. Whenever I try to explain this to my parents, my words fall upon deaf ears. Instead my words are twisted to suit their purposes, just as Waverly’s mother twists her outburst into a lack of concern for her family. I liked the part where Waverly learned chess strategies from the old man in the park. It was nice that the old man found a person to pass on his knowledge to. I like the idea of invisible strength. Although I find it very difficult to apply to my own life, I appreciate the wisdom of employing such a technique. Waverly’s attitude towards her gifts strikes a chord with me. Though I am reluctant to admit, sometimes I can be somewhat conceited about my talents. Reading Waverly’s story made me understand myself a little. The end of the chapter left me wanting more. What happened with her mother? Were they able to resolve their differences? I wanted to read the end to see a resolution between the conflict between Waverly and her mother. If there had been more to the ending, I would have felt more at ease knowing the condition of their relationship after Waverly’s outburst. I really hope that they resolved the differences between themselves. Maybe I hope that because I wish for a resolution to the turmoil in my own parent-child relationship.
2. The relationship between Lindo and Waverly Jong is that of a typical mother and daughter. Waverly quarrels with Lindo because she misinterprets her mother's pride in her success. Waverly wants chess to be only her own accomplishment. When her mother interferes with her game by giving her useless tips, she feels as if her mother is claiming what Waverly sees as her own personal achievement. Also, Waverly is embarrassed by her mother showing her off to everyone, just how most children feel when they reach a certain age. On the other hand, Lindo just feels a paternal pride in her child. She isn’t trying to piggyback on her child’s success, but rather wants to show the world how great her daughter is. She acts how some parents do at their work place, showing everyone a picture of their precious child and recounting the tales of everything they have accomplished.
3. In this chapter, Amy Tan uses a lot of symbolism. A chess game is used to symbolize the conflict between Waverly and her mother. Waverly thinks of her mother as a strong opponent. The things that they say to each other and the way they interact are techniques to beat each other. At the end of the chapter she uses a game of chess to describe how she feels that her mother has utterly defeated her. The use of symbolism improves the story because it allows the reader to see the conflict between Waverly and her mother in a whole new way.
4. I think that the conflict in this chapter is Human vs. Human. Waverly clashes with her mother for independence. Her mother wants Waverly to listen to her wisdom whereas Waverly want to go out and experience the world for herself and make her own judgments. Waverly wants to do things at her own pace, her own way. Her mother wants Waverly to do things they way she tells her to. This inevitably leads to a clash of wills which her mother ends up winning at the end of the chapter.

Sunday, January 04, 2009 9:58:00 PM  
Blogger Hearts_Jen said...

The Rules
“Rules of the Game”
1. I thought is was cool the way Waverly Jong’s mother encourages her to use her gift. Rather then wanting her to be like everyone else, her mother is proud that she has talent. Even if chess was a topic her mother knew nothing about Jong’s interest in it was quite great. Like any mother Jong’s did a good job teaching her to be a lady and kept her toes with manners.
2. Lindo and Waverly’s relationship is quiet a typical one. As any mother would be, Lindo is proud of her daughter’s success in chess. She encourages her daughter to succeed. She also encourages her daughter to learn and have manners. Perhaps Lindo takes it a bit far, as she uses her daughter as somewhat of a prize. Presenting her to friends and family. Waverly doesn’t like this, but she still knows her mother is proud of her achievements.
3. The symbolism in this chapter was very fun to think about. It seems that Tan used the game of chess, to make a statement about the character’s life. Waverly would make a decision to make a move in the game of chess, as she would to make a decision in the game of life. All her decisions lead to an outcome. These in the game of chess result in either ‘win or lose’, but in the game of life they are either a positive step or a fall for her.
4. Similar to the allegory at the start of the section, a young girl argues with her mother, questioning her knowledge. The girl ends up losing, learning a hard lesson, one that could have been learned by listening to her much wiser mother. Waverly also makes the decision to defy her mother, but in the end, realizes that age does create a sense of wisdom, and maybe her mother does know best.

Sunday, January 04, 2009 10:11:00 PM  
Blogger Vernana Dee said...

"Rules of the Game"
1. At times, I disliked Waverly. Especially when she became so big-headed when she started building momentum in her chess career. Though, now that I can reflect upon, I don't really blame her. She was a kid and she worked hard to build up her skills. I think she felt that she deserved a reward.

I also really pitied Waverly in this chapter. She had to live up to her mother's constant bragging. I felt for Waverly in the market because my mom's done that before too. It made me feel like a tool; like I was just there to make her feel good about herself.
2. Her mother definitely treats Waverly with tough love. She is extremely harsh in raising Waverly. It makes me recall the Shakespeare quote, "I must be cruel to be kind; thus, bad begins and worst is left behind." Because although Lindo is hard on Waverly, she will no doubt remember what her mother taught her.
3. Amy Tan used a lot personification in this chapter. She used it particularly on the chess pieces. In Waverly's dream, her chess pieces “screamed as they scurried and fell off the board one by one” (103) when the opposing chess pieces were nearing in. This made Waverly's nightmare come alive. It dramatized Waverly's defeat.
4. I learned that there is such a thing as Chinese Chess. I always knew that there was Chinese Checkers but not Chinese Chess. I seems like Chinese people always have different techniques and ways to play games. Going back to "The Joy Luck Club" chapter, the aunties remark that Jewish mahjong differed from Chinese mahjong as well.

Sunday, January 04, 2009 10:15:00 PM  
Blogger The Showboater said...

Sean Thai
Period 7
If you keep order, your life is orderly; and if you don't...
Rules of the Game
This chapter was pretty refreshing after reading the last chapter, being able to feel the return life-like qualities of the characters; I relished in the enjoyment of reading this chapter. Throughout this chapter, I felt the evolution of the character, especially when Waverly had wanted to learn so much about chess, felt the thirst for knowledge; this was something I could associate with because I could just sit at home and read information all day, just to learn something new, now applying said knowledge would be something else for me. Throughout this chapter, the one thing that really was a really big improvement was the realism of the characters. This also gave the relationships between the characters a little more roundness. This especially enhanced the relationship between Waverly and Lindo. In the relationship between Waverly and Lindo, I can see many qualities that I can see possible, for the same qualities I see in the relationship I have with my mom. As I read this chapter, I could connect with some of Waverly feelings, as in when Waverly was exasperated because “[her] mother had a habit of standing over [her] while she plotted her games,” (100). However, we do not experience this relationship from Lindo’s view, for this chapter is written in third-person limited, from Waverly’s view. This view was picked aptly in my opinion, for it situated the chapter and the plot of the vignette very well. Another good thing about reading from this point-of-view is the realism it provides, the fact that we see from one person, and their whole life, providing realism to the chapter; something I cannot stress enough, especially since the last chapter was flat. In my opinion, Lindo was becoming too involved with Waverly and her chess. This was a big problem, and in fact the main problem of the vignette. I believe that Waverly started to feel suffocated, by all of her mothers actions, from the bragging, from the embarrassment, and from the presence of her mother when she had watched. This conflict between the mother and daughter, or human and human, is very heart-wrenching in the aftermath. We can conclude that this is a human vs. human conflict for the conflict was between to humans because of own personalities and actions.

Sunday, January 04, 2009 11:40:00 PM  
Blogger The Showboater said...

I think this chapter is especially morbid in my opinion, for throughout the chapter, there are many anecdotes that provide a morbid fearful and sad theme to the chapter. I believed that all of the words with negative connotations, even in the sentences that do not have any negative meaning whatsoever. One sad part of the chapter was when the mother had a miscarriage. My uncle had a miscarriage recently, and I have witnessed the pain it has brought, the self-blame it has caused, and the depression that was conceived instead of a child. I think this chapter was well written, the placement of the chapter after “Rules of the Game” was excellent, for the mood from the last chapter transferred over nicely. Throughout this chapter, I think the relationship between the father and mother is very interesting. I believe that the mother and father love each other very much, even though there are many cultural walls between them. I do believe though, that the father is almost like a naïve child, not fully understanding, but tries his hardest anyways. The writing style of this chapter that was most important was word choice, in my opinion, for it had left a feeling of dread and despair. I believe that this conflict is human vs. nature. I believe this is so because the fact that she is scared of everything her mom has said, which was said out of concern, because the nature of a mother, led me to believe this was human vs. nature. In short, I believe it was human vs. the nature of humans.

Sunday, January 04, 2009 11:46:00 PM  
Blogger Annnnnie. said...


“Rules of the Game”

1. At first, I could see that Waverly was a daughter that any mother would want, a prodigy and respectful. I was actually quite envious. However, as the story progressed, Waverly became more and more disrespectful to her mother and her own culture. I guess I saw myself reflected in her actions. I really did understand the way she felt about how her mother pushed her to the limits. I also experience the pressure that Waverly feels when her mother stands behind her, criticizing her every move. Waverly’s personality and actions remind me of myself. Her mother also reminds me of my own mother, boasting about my successes, never shutting up when I want her to. I know that I also feel that going out with my mother is “embarrassing” (99) and Waverly’s mother’s reactions feel like déjà vu to me. I felt that I understood this Waverly very well. I know the expectations of Chinese parents and how hard they are to live up to. Even if one manages to live up to those expectations, Chinese parents will still expect more. I also found that Waverly’s fondness of chess was very interesting. In my early childhood days, I had also loved to play chess, although I wasn’t a prodigy like Waverly was. However, like Waverly’s mother, my mother thought too seriously of it, and I grew tired of listening to her complaints. I was truly shocked to discover that Waverly and I had such mirrored lives.

2. Waverly and her mother definitely have that expected relationship between parent and child. I’d describe it as a relationship where both parties are just not satisfied with the other. For example, Waverly’s mother is trying to push her into the right direction. However, Waverly only thinks that her mother is trying to embarrass her. When Waverly wins all her chess tournaments, her mother feels that it is not enough and sets a higher expectation. Because they were born in different places, different rules and influences have been drilled into their minds. They cannot understand each other. Perhaps it’s because of language differences or maybe it’s just their differences in points of view.

3. I believe that the most noticeable writing technique that Amy Tan uses in “Rules of the Game” is symbolism. The entire chessboard, the pieces, and the game itself represent different things. Although not mentioned, I felt that the chessboard was like a planning board for Waverly’s life. With each move she took, her life was brought to face something new. The white pieces represented herself, and the black pieces were her opponent, “two angry black slits,” (100) someone who had told her the “strongest wind cannot be seen,” (100) her very own mother. The game itself and the strategies she use are her moves in controlling her own life. Whether she made the wrong move or the right move, her life would be in either her own hands, or the enemy’s hands.

4. I feel that the conflict in this chapter was a human v. human conflict, taking place between Waverly and her mother. Waverly truly seems to be annoyed at her mother for taking the her hard-earned credit that made her a chess champion. Although Lindo takes the time to cheer for her daughter’s success, she also pressures her, making unhelpful comments or gestures that lower Waverly’s self-esteem.

Monday, January 05, 2009 11:47:00 PM  
Blogger marshmichello said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009 3:17:00 AM  
Blogger marshmichello said...

1. Check Mate
2. Rules of the Game
3. Waverly describes where she lives and different things her mother taught her. Then she talks about the Christmas party and how her brother got the chess set. She offered to use her Lifesavers as missing chess pieces so she could play. She learns quickly learns how to play the game and beats her older brothers. She plays with an old man at the playground near her house, and he teaches her even more. I thought it was really cool that she became really good; I can't even play chess. Many people began to watch her play, and she eventually was entered in tournaments. She won the tournaments and became known as a prodigy. I wonder what it felt like to be famous at such a young age. However, when her mother bragged about her she suddenly ran away. I would be mad too if my mother kept bragging. She came back home to an angry mother. At the end of the chapter, her mother had "won the match" and she is left thinking about her next move.
4. Waverly and her mother have a lot to learn from each other. Waverly's mother teaches her how to get what she wants by not asking for it. It was because of her mother that Waverly looked so much into chess and became a great player. Although her mother taught her so much, she shouldn't use Waverly as something to brag about. She should acknowledge her daughter's feelings.
5. Towards the end of the chapter, the chessboard is symbolic. The white pieces represented Waverly and the black pieces represented her mother. Her mother advances, almost taking over, and Waverly has to find a way out of losing. Their game of chess represents their actually life, where they stand. This symbolism improves the story because it gives the reader a visual of what is going on and how Waverly is feeling.
6. (a) There are a several life lessons in this story. One of which is the one Waverly's mother taught her. She could get what we wanted by not whining or asking for it, but to wait. By not asking for candy from the store, her mother went into the store and Waverly got the candy she wanted. Another lesson is that if you take some advice and work hard you may become something. Waverly took her mother's advice and worked at learning the game of chess and soon became a prodigy.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009 3:18:00 AM  
Blogger RHEEAK. said...

Rikki Dioisio, Period 6

1. Invisible as the Wind
2. Rules of the Game – The Twenty-Six Malignant Gates
3. This chapter was enjoyable and in a way kind of comical because once Waverly became the community champion and got her face on the cover of a magazine her mother paraded around the city showing everyone the magazine, and this was sort of a stereotype of an Asian family that they all show off their children when they children are over achievers. Also, I praised Waverly on her constant hard work at the game of chess and being consistent in the effort she put into it. The work finally paid off for her in the end. Many young people today want things handed to them and do not want to put in the effort and hard work that is needed thus giving up without a fight. To me, once I get the end result I praise myself for pushing as hard as I did even though it was hard.
4. The relationship between Waverly and her mother, Lindo, can be described as disrespectful and at times distant with a lack of understanding. Once Waverly matures and gets older she begins to disobey her mother and even uses her chess as an excuse. As a child though, Waverly was obedient and loyal to her mother. Though they had their ups and downs as a mother and daughter, the two do still have a loving bond beneath their superficial disagreements. Lindo loves her daughter very much, that is obvious, but Lindo seems to liver through Waverly as she rises to become the chess champion. Lindo gets thrills and excitement knowing her daughter is known for her skills.
5. This chapter, same as the others, is abundant in symbolism. Tan uses the chess board as a symbol of the differences that Waverly and her mother have. Waverly chess pieces are being demolished by her mother’s. This can be interpreted as her mother having a sense of underlying “dislike” towards the person her daughter has become and taking the part of her she was proudest of and ripping it to pieces.
6. One thing I took away form this chapter about Chinese culture is that Chinese, and most Asian parents, if not all parents, love to brag about their children. That is a bit stereotypical but in this chapter we see Lindo parading through the streets with a magazine with Waverly’s face on it and shoving it in random peoples faces; it was hysterical.

Saturday, January 17, 2009 7:16:00 PM  
Blogger Myles said...

1. The Deciding Move
2. “Rules of the Game”
3. This chapter was exciting for me and a bit awkward because the most awkward, terrifying and questioning moment was when Waverly Jong had knocked down the bag of oranges in the old lady’s hands and “raced down the street, dashing between people, not looking back as [her] mother screamed shrilly, “Meimei! Meimei!” (pg.99). I was terrified and kept on wondering what Waverly would do next given that she ran away from her mother, did not listen to what her mother commanded her to do and did not help clean up the mess of tin cans and oranges covering the street. Now, Waverly’s mother continued to raise my annoyance and anger bar throughout the whole chapter. First, her mother never gave her a “good job” or a “you played very well” comment, but instead would hmmmmph every time she would play the game of chess. Also, she twisted Waverly’s words around when Waverly did not want her mother to show her off. I really dislike people that are like that and instead of Waverly learning to love the game she learns that if she does not win a match of chess, she will “disgrace” her family.
4. Waverly Jong, or “Meimei”, as her family refers to her as, does not think of her next moves in life until the obstacle that’s placed in front of her exists. Then, she decides what move will be best for her to make her way past the obstacle. I believe her way of getting through life is like chess. In chess you might not know what your next move will be until the chess piece is moved by the other player. In her way of life she unfortunately has to make a decision on the spot when she knocks down the bag of tin cans and oranges and decides that she should run away from the stressful life that she had been living. Waverly, in my eyes, is fearless.
5. I believe that the conflict in this chapter is human vs. self. Waverly is pulled and tugged around by her family, but mostly her mother. To break that chain of tugs and pulls and others deciding Waverly Jong’s life for her, Waverly has to do something drastic and that deciding move like a deciding move in the game of chess that might be surprising is the move in which Waverly runs away from her family, her life and the angry old lady. Even before the run away, Waverly struggles to tell her mother not to show her off to others and talk about their relation. Waverly had had enough of all the pressure of her mother like the pressure of a human swimming down to the bottom of the ocean. Waverly wanted to start over and to do that she ran away.
6. The objects in this chapter that are symbols are the game of chess and the tin cans and oranges. The tin cans and oranges symbolize Waverly’s mind which is scrambled because of all the family pressure and winning pressure from her mother when Waverly plays chess. Before the hectic life came into play, which was Waverly running into the old woman with the groceries, Waverly was having fun on the streets with friends, but when the chess life became her life, the fun life was over. The other symbol in this chapter was the chess board. The chess board and pieces were Waverly’s life and she had to remember that only she could decide how her life was to be played out even with the pressure of the world and her family, which were the audience and her mother. Once that goal was achieved of deciding her own life in any which way she decided, the life she wanted would exist if she tried her hardest to reaching that life.

Saturday, December 19, 2009 5:00:00 PM  
Blogger wilsonvolleyball said...

"Rules of the Game"
1.Her name reminds me of a series on the tele called the "Wizards of Waverly Place" on Disney Channel. Its just the name thought because the show and this story is totally irrelevant. I think that Waverly has a real genius for playing chess but it was because she showed a passion and interest for chess. I think Amy Tan foreshadowed that Waverly was going to be a really smart girl in the paragraph where she chooses her Christmas present "As I peered into the sack, I quickly fingered the remaining presents, testing their weight, imagining what they contained." However, I believe Waverly used her talent in chess as an excuse to gain some advantages for herself e.g. getting out of chores and a room to herself. Her mother on the other hand, used Waverly's talent and the trophies she won to show off to other families. Her mother constantly bragged about Waverly's genius and sometimes, I think, to the extent where Waverly was described like a machine or a thing.
2.Waverly Place Jong. Despite her genius in chess, being the youngest and only girl in the family, I think she may be overly loved by her family. Like I said before, she used her talents to tip things in her favor sometimes. Being the baby of the family, I think some of her actions are a tad childish and immature when she responds to her mother with "I wish you wouldn't do that, telling everybody I'm your daughter." She's embarrassed by being with her mother, who speaks poor English and brags about her all the time. I think she's also fed up about how her mother brags about her success as if it were her own and talks about her like she were an object to be passed and bossed around. I think she just wants to be able to have a life of her own as a normal kid and not treated as a Chinatown Chess Champion. If I were her I would want to play chess and enjoy it; being able to have fun in the competitions is the most important, not winning. She started out loving chess as a pure fun entertainment but then it became like a pressure, where she'd always have to win or else she'd dishonor her family.
3.I think the conflict here is human versus human, in this case, Waverly and her mother. The main conflict is caused by Waverly's own genius in chess. What started out as a hobby she enjoyed soon became a burden that she had to carry around. After she started winning in chess competitions, her mother now starts to pressure her in various ways, wanting her to win more and more competitions and bring back more trophies so she could show off.
4.Amy Tan's most significant usage of symbols in this chapter is the Chessboard and its pieces. I think the chessboard resembles Waverly's life, the white pieces resemble her freedom in which she faces her opponent, her mother, the black pieces, whom are trying to attack and restrict her freedom. Waverly has to choose to move her pieces wisely so she preserves her freedom, yet she cannot take all the black pieces because she has to respect her mother. I think she's fighting for the freedom in her life, the life she wants as a normal kid.

Sunday, December 20, 2009 10:58:00 PM  
Blogger Soap on a Rope said...

Arun Jandaur
Period 3
Blog #2: Rules of the Game


2. “Rules of the Game”

3. I really liked this chapter. It was rather straightforward and interesting. Waverly is skilled and although she comes from a poor family, she is a national champion who uses whatever resources possible to get better at chess. When I was reading, though, I realized that Waverly is a brat. She takes advantage of the fact that she’s good at chess to get out of finishing her food, getting a bedroom to herself, and not doing her chores. Waverly being a great chess player is her invisible strength that her mother tries to teach her at the beginning of the chapter. Speaking of Waverly’s mother, I didn’t like her character. She puts a lot of pressure on Waverly and never acknowledges her victories but what she can improve on. It drives me crazy when someone does that. I know that if I were to win my first chess tournament trophy, my parents would compliment me, whereas Meimei’s mother complains that Waverly should “win more, lose less” (Tan 97) chess pieces. I felt a little bit sorry for Waverly because of all of the pressure put on her by her mother. It’s sad that someone’s passion suddenly becomes a necessity to someone else like Waverly’s mother. It’s also sad that Waverly is bragged about like some object and that she can’t tell her mother to not do so without her mother taking it the wrong way. “Aiii-ya. So shame be with mother?” (Tan 99) is the reply she gets from her mother.

4. Waverly Jong is an intelligent, crafty, and pressured child. Her chess skills and her passion for chess is amazing. Another thing that makes her intelligent, though, is how she “peered into the sack, [she] quickly fingered the remaining presents, testing their weight, imagining what they contained” (92). She is also very crafty. This is clearly shown when she uses her skill at chess as an excuse to getting out of chores and doing what she wants. Although she loves chess and is good at it, she is pressured by her mother to get better and better at it. Her mother always finds some way to complain about Waverly’s chess playing, no matter how good it is.

5. After reading “Rules of the Game”, I am going to conclude that the conflict is human vs. human. While Waverly’s mother may be her moral support, Waverly also has a conflict with her. Lindo (Waverly’s mom) puts pressure on Waverly and brags about her as well as if her daughter was a commodity. Poor Waverly has to deal with all this and she can’t even tell her mother how she feels without her mother misunderstanding her.

6. Amy Tan uses a lot of imagery in this chapter. She describes the environment in which Waverly lives in very well. She describes the socioeconomic condition and where they live. She describes the playground and the alleyways. Her description of the alleyways is very detailed because of how Amy Tan explains and portrays the pharmacy, the restaurant, and the seafood butcher shop (which creeped me out) as well as the people who worked there. I like the way Amy Tan really explained the surroundings of the protagonist in this chapter.

Monday, December 21, 2009 11:53:00 AM  
Blogger Super Alien said...

Chess Player of Waverly Place
“Rules of the Game”
by Fiona Cheung

1. I think Tan described this chapter very well, from their lifestyle to the setting. I imagined myself walking down the street that they lived in, being introduced to the alleys, seafood restaurant, and cafes. The broken English Waverly’s mother spoke was confusing sometimes, though, such as “Is shame you fall down nobody push you” (96). I reread it many times and still didn’t understand it. I understood very much the humility her mother held as well, as that’s how most Chinese mothers are—always criticizing and never praising. I also empathized with her when Vincent did not want to explain the rules of chess to her. I tried following along to learn chess for myself, too, but I was confused, so I am guessing Waverly was as well. As she grew better at chess though, her pride started to get to her and I started getting annoyed at how she thought she could get away with anything, using chess as an excuse. She had taken it too far, and I was surprised nobody yelled at her. All in all, though, I found this chapter easy and interesting to read.
2. From what I read, Waverly seems like a mature child. Unlike other kids who usually whine and nag their mothers nonstop for what they want, she was taught from the beginning “the art of invisible strength” and to “bite back [her] tongue” (89). She had acknowledged as a child that sometimes to hold back her desires and stay strong. Also, unlike other kids, she does not believe that the man in a lame costume is Santa Claus because Santa Claus was not Chinese. Her maturity level also shows when she stops whining for her brother to teach her chess but instead was determined to read the instruction booklet herself to learn until she is better than them all. Chess had also sped up her process of growing up, so that at age 9, she had already run out of her mother’s loving arms and wanted to escape.
3. The main conflict in this chapter seems to be an external conflict between Waverly and her mother. After becoming better and better at chess, she started to become annoyed at her mother’s comments and even proud bragging. She did not feel loved or proud to be bragged about but instead embarrassed. She started to talk back to her mother and eventually burst and even yelled at her mother, running away. This conflict was not resolved at the end, however, and it seems it even built up Waverly’s hate more.
4. I think the chessboard is a symbol of life. Waverly’s mother teaches her that she needs to know the rules of the game, the rules of life, in order to survive. In the end, she sees herself on a board versus her mother, which symbolizes herself going against her mother in the board of life.

Monday, December 21, 2009 9:27:00 PM  
Blogger em, ily! said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009 1:01:00 AM  
Blogger BrandonLamTookMyName said...

1. “Your Move”
2. Rules of the Game
3. My first thought was that the mother of Waverly Jong was a tad bit obnoxious and boastful. She would boast to everyone that Waverly was her daughter, her prized daughter that won chess matches. If I were her daughter, I would be extremely embarrassed to be walking around with her as well, having her brag about me to everyone else. Also, since I have played in many chess tournaments as well, I found Waverly’s mother extremely critical of her daughter during chess games, especially when she tells Waverly not to lose too many pieces. Sometimes, the point of chess is to sacrifice pieces in order to win the game. Although I believed her mother to be annoying, I thought Waverly overdid it when she instructed her mother to stop telling everyone she was her daughter, as in Chinese households, that is one of the greatest insults you can inflict upon your elders. It displays a lack of affection and pride for your elder and greatly shows how little respect Waverly had, after being spoiled so much by her mother. The only question I have is: what did Waverly Jong become, as she was even compared to the likes of Bobby Fischer, after the vignette ended; did she continue on to become a grandmaster?
4. The independence Waverly Jong emanates as a young girl, age 8, is astounding to me. She can already rationally deduce that larger presents did not actually contain the better items and the fact that sound made a huge difference in whether or not the present was decent. She is also extremely good at taking in her surroundings, as shown with her observance of the others when they opened their gifts, deducing what was stated above.
5. The main conflict is, in my opinion, human vs.human; in other words, it’s the conflict between Waverly Jong and her mother, the difference between generations. What Waverly Jong sees is not necessarily what her mother sees, as they are separated by an extremely large age gap. Their viewpoints and perspectives are also really different, one seeming to emanate both humility and pride and the other just wanting to keep quiet. This buildup ultimately leads to the main conflict in the story, when Waverly Jong basically tells her mother that she’s ashamed to be her daughter.
6. In my opinion, the whole chapter revolves around the chessboard, the chess manual, and the pieces on it, symbolizing Waverly’s life and her mother’s interference in her life. The rules of life that were taught her by her mother, symbolized by the rules of chess, showed recurrently throughout the story, aiding Waverly to her victories in chess but ultimately defeating her. Although she is such an ace at chess, she can’t seem to beat her mother in the game of life, the game of understanding. No matter what, she can’t escape the fact that her mother is still more mature, still holds more knowledge. Since she is still under her mother’s control, she must show filial piety to her mother and not go against her.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009 11:18:00 PM  
Blogger T-DAN said...

The Strongest Wind Cannot Be Seen
Waverly Jong: The Rules of the Game

This Waverly’s vignette relates to Lindo’s vignette as Lindo teachers Waverly that she was in charge of her own destiny. Waverly inherits her mother’s cleverness and inner strength. Lindo found invisible strength within herself to endure her step-mother and her arranged marriage. She used this strength to develop a clever strategy to escape the situation she was in. While Waverly, she finds her invisible strength in chess traps. She uses this strength to dominate in chess. Another thing that I got out of this vignette was that Waverly seems to be possessive about her chess talent. She does not appreciate her mother being around as she practices. She also does not like how her mother boasts her around. She does not understand that her mother is proud of her. Maybe she does understand but she wants her achievements to be her own. Sometimes I feel like my parents are being like Lindo. They boast about my achievements as if it’s their own. It annoys me a bit but I know they are just proud of their daughter.
Waverly is a very clever girl. She is a prodigy! She was determined to dominate in chess and does so. She is very smart and learns chess tactics. She learns chess essentials such as having foresight, mathematical understanding, and etc. She goes from dominating her brother, to old men, and then to tournaments. She is 429 points from the grand master status. I think that she has an amazing talent.
The conflict in this vignette is external human vs. human between Waverly and Lindo. Waverly opposes her mother’s pride and bragging. The conflict, however, is not resolved because at the end of the novel, Waverly is plotting her next move. Their relationship becomes strained.
I think that the theme of this vignette is that our parents are influential to our loves. Waverly was influenced to work hard to control her future from her mother. A line that reveals this is, “I was six when my mother taught me the art of invisible strength. It was a strategy for winning arguments, respect from others, and eventually, though neither of us knew it at the time, chess games” (89). In an earlier vignette, there was an idea that the decisions of our parents effects our lives. In addition to parent’s influence, whatever our parents are to us, also has an effect on our lives, proven by this vignette.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009 11:57:00 PM  
Blogger Ben_Tran said...

1. Checkmate
2. “Rules of the Game”
3. Waverly seems very boastful, but I can see that she is just proud. If I had a successful daughter, I would brag all the time about her accomplishments. The thing I don’t like about Waverly’s mother is that she doesn’t always compliment and encourage her daughter. When Waverly told her mother to stop bragging and telling people that Waverly is her daughter I was very surprised because that is extremely rude. If I said that to my parents, I would surely be punished. I think Waverly just overreacted, and her mother needs to be a bit more caring.
4. At the beginning of this vignette, I could really see all the things Waverly Jong was describing in Chinatown. It reminds me of when I went to San Francisco’s Chinatown and I felt as if I could smell all the foods she described. I was confused a few times because of Waverly’s mother’s broken English, but I eventually understood it. I felt sorry for Waverly because her mother would always criticize her instead of encouraging her. Overall, this chapter was very straightforward and fun to read.
5. I think the conflict in this chapter is external and between Waverly and her mother. Before Waverly was good at chess, her mother couldn’t brag much, but when Waverly improved her mother would brag all the time. Waverly didn’t like this and thought it was rather embarrassing; she ends up yelling at her mother and running away. Waverly came home in the end, but the conflict was not resolved.
6. I only found one symbol in this chapter, and it is the chessboard. The chessboard represents life, and Waverly is taught how to play. She learns the rules of the game, and learns about life. In life there must be a plan to be successful, just like in chess. Waverly’s final opponent in this chapter is her mother, and none has won so far.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009 1:40:00 PM  
Blogger Kayla L. said...

Kayla Lawmaster
Period 3
Want to play?
“Rules of the Game”

3. I think that…
Waverly sounds like a pretty normal kid in the beginning, besides the whole child prodigy thing and the fact that she a national chess champion. She plays on the playground and plays tricks on the tourists. She finds something she is passionate about at a very early age and pursues it, which makes her extraordinary. I can’t really relate to this story because my parents have never pushed me into doing anything I didn’t want to do or wanted to do for that matter and have always let me do what I want as long as it was safe. As long as I was happy they were content as well.
This story totally reminds of the movie Akeelah and the Bee. The both come from poor conditions, both have a passion and they both go great lengths.
Some questions I have are…
Why is Bobby Fischer mentioned in the story? He doesn’t appear anywhere else. I kind of thought Waverly was going to play him in chess, but she doesn’t.
Why did Waverly’s mom and the old lady both call her stupid when she knocked over a bag of groceries? It’s not like she dropped an antique vase. They’re oranges! I’ve heard that telling someone they’re stupid is the worst thing you can say to them.
Does Waverly ever become a chess master? The story leaves you hanging a little bit.

4. When Waverly asks why the rules of chess are the way they are tells me she is an inquisitive person. She wants to understand more. She later learns to conceal her questions of why and just figure them out herself. Waverly is also an independent person. She goes to the library by herself to learn more about chess, since her brothers and mom weren’t of any real help. “[She] studied each chess piece, trying to absorb the power they contained” (94). She learns the rules and strategies and when she sees some old men playing chess and decides to play with them. Here is where she learns the secrets of chess.

5. The conflict of “Rules of the Games” is probably man vs. man which would be Waverly vs. mother. Through most of the story Waverly doesn’t complain about her mother even though “[she] was annoyed, but [she didn’t] say anything” (97). Waverly keeps winning all these chess tournaments, but it doesn’t seem good enough to her mother. Eventually she ends up running away from her mother because she keeps showing her off like some prized pooch. I can’t really say that the conflict was solved because when she returned home her mother was very upset/disappointed and kind of acted like she isn’t even her daughter and then story ends.

6a. One line I thought was very confusing and had to read over and over was when the mother says “Is shame you fall nobody push you” (96). I think she is trying to say her broken English that shame is when you fall down and nobody pushes you. This means that it’s better to try something and lose then to never try at all. It’s like that one quote saying “it’s better to have loved and lost, then to have never loved at all”. How do you know you will lose or fail until you try? I thought this was a good theme that was just kind of thrown in the story.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009 3:02:00 PM  
Blogger Idara said...

Skills, not luck

"Rules of the game"

1. I felt that I could really understand this chapter and it was interesting. Towards the end of the chapter, I understood why Waverly Jong got angry and annoyed with her mother, Lindo Jong, when they were at the market. I think that the anger built up in Waverly over a long period of time and it just happened to find its way out at that instance. Waverly spent a lot of time perfecting her skill of chess but all the while her mother told everyone that Waverly was just winning from luck. Maybe Lindo was being modest but it would have been better if she acknowledged the amount of work Waverly put into playing chess.

2. I think that the conflict in the chapter is that Waverly feels like an accessory of her mom’s. Before Waverly became an expert at chess, she was treated normally and I don’t think that she was given any praise from her mother for just being the child that she was. Once Waverly became a champion at chess, her mom would tell every passerby that Waverly was her daughter. She may have been showing Waverly off because she was proud of her, but Waverly’s mom never told Waverly that she was proud of her. It seemed that Waverly was just an accessory that made Waverly’s mom accepted by other and thought of higher.

3. The theme of the chapter is that although “to bite back your tongue” is the invisible strength, you must still speak your mind when you need to. Waverly probably felt used by her mother for a long time but she bit back her tongue and never spoke up. The act of bottling up her emotions towards her mother, led to the event of Waverly running away and being ignored by her mother. If only Waverly spoke up ahead of time, there would not be as much tension between her and her mother. I think that the real invisible strength is to plan your move ahead of time and then execute it at the right moment, just as in chess. Waverly should have eased her thoughts to her mom at a pace that wouldn’t cause a fight. That would have been the real invisible strength.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009 7:25:00 PM  
Blogger allison. said...

Two Adversaries are like Clashing Ideas
"Rules of the Game"

The story starts out with Waverly, a young normal girl. She feels distant from her brothers and often like she has no one to talk to which is the same way I feel sometimes, but I think that most other young girls that age feel the same way too. She plays, and she seems to obtain a great deal of interest in many things such as the gifts other kids receive, the games her brothers play, and the old men in the park playing. She has a struggle with her mother, who, does not view the world the same way she does, causing them to have several arguments throughout the chapter. Waverly is taught the “rules of the game” by one of the old men in the park who takes great interest in her. She becomes such a magnanimous player that she attends tournaments and wins all of them. Even when she wins a tournament, her mother still is not completely satisfied with her because she “loses too many,” leaving Waverly to think that she still is not good enough for her mother. This chapter was easier for me to understand; however I did not connect or relate to it because my parents support what I do rather than force me into something I do not desire. Overall, this chapter left me a bit confused and thirsting for more answers to my questions.
Waverly’s mother is a character who I did not quite comprehend in exposition of the novel. I do not understand why she is so harsh on her children and calls Waverly “stupid” for bumping into the old woman at the grocery store. She may have been clumsy or distracted but I do not think stupid was the right word to use. She is from China and I started to understand that she must think of life there much different than in America. In China she was raised differently and has great customs that she still holds her beliefs too so I also think that she thinks old-fashioned and she brings that way of life into her home and children’s lives as well. In the end, I think that she should have praised Waverly more for her accomplishments and criticized less.
The main conflict is man vs. man. Waverly and her mother have several disagreements with each other. When she starts to become good at chess, Waverly’s mother brags over her daughter and this offends Waverly because she would never speak highly of her before she became good at something. Also her mother never appreciates the hard work that Waverly has put into becoming good at chess so this also frustrates Waverly. The conflict does not get resolved because when Waverly returns home after running away, she does not apologize or talk to her mother about what has happened so it is ignored and not resolved.
The theme of this chapter is that you cannot run away from your problems or struggles in life. Waverly runs, she runs away from her mother and from her life…thinking it will all go away but it does not. In life if we all ran away from our problems then nothing would be resolved and we would know grow maturely as adults and learn.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009 8:27:00 PM  
Blogger jen_bug said...

1)"Pigtail Chess Pro"
2)"Rules of the Game"
3)So far this chapter is my favorite because it shows that no matter what age a person is they can accomplish anything if they work hard at it. while reading I didn't understand why the mother kept telling random people in the market that the little girl next to her was her daughter. I think any child would get annoyed and so what embarrassed if their mother kept doing that. Also just because a child is working hard towards something doesn't mean that they shouldn't have to participate in their normal chores around the house. This could just lead to fights among the siblings living in the house. Overall I very much enjoyed reading about Waverly and the "journey" she went through by becoming obsessed with the game of chess.
4)Waverly is the main character in this chapter. She's only a little girl but she has accomplished a lot by only being nine years old. She became popular throughout the streets of her neighborhood by becoming a master chess player. Although being the best and honoring your family by winning is a good feeling but, it can sometimes be annoying if your family flaunts it too much. For example, when at the market place with her mother Waverly gets annoyed as her mother keeps saying, "This is my daughter Wave-ly Jong, [my mother] said to whoever walked by." (99) Waverly hates when her mom does this and ends up running away. This just goes to show that she doesn't necessarily want everyone to know her name and think she is doesn't from anyone else. Honestly, she is just a normal girl who has happened to be a very talented chess player.
5)The main conflict taking place in this chapter is human vs. human. The conflict is taking place between Waverly and her mother near the end of the chapter once Waverly returns home. The conflict is resolved in that Waverly will listen and follow what her mother tells her to do and won't try to fight her back.
6)The different pieces of a chess board symbolize Waverly and her mother. The black men of the chess board represent Waverly's mother while the white pieces represent Waverly herself. "Her black men advanced across the plane... My white pieces screamed as they scurried and fell off the board one by one." (101)

Thursday, December 24, 2009 11:48:00 AM  
Blogger jessica said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

Thursday, December 24, 2009 4:23:00 PM  
Blogger jessica said...

Confessions of a Child Prodigy
"Rules of the Game"

Okay, no offense to Amy Tan, but I'm getting kind of tired of having her teach us life lessons at the beginning of every chapter. "I was six when my mother taught me the art of invisible strength," (89). When you were six? Really? Most of us were still too young to understand how the world works, let alone to understand what it means to be modest. I mean, it's not realistic that all these characters in the novel are so perceptive...maybe it's just me, but I prefer my stories to be more relatable, instead of the narrators talking as if they were some all-knowing prophet, or something.

Other than that, Lindo Jong has a good technique for teaching her daughter things. In the beginning of the chapter, instead of letting her cry in a supermarket and causing a scene, she teaches Waverly to "bite back her tongue." The next time they go to the store, she gets Waverly the bag of plums that she wanted. I think that when I become a parent, I will tell my kids the same thing to keep them from nagging whenever we go grocery shopping. :)

The main conflict of the chapter is Human vs. Human, or Waverly vs. her mother. Even though her mother supports her in all of her chess-related endeavors, she brags about Waverly's talents as if they were her own. This would be her way of "living through her daughter," as we talked about in class one time. Lindo needs a reason to be proud of her daughter so she shows her off like a prize.

The chess board is a symbol that is mentioned a lot throughout this chapter. It probably has to do with Waverly opposing her mother. She often thinks of her 'men' as being attacked, so much that she tries to keep her gaurd up, which is why she probably spends all her moments thinking of new chess techniques. Also, when she says, "Sometimes you have to lose pieces to get ahead," (97). this probably has to do with the theme "Sometimes you have to sacrifice some things to gain some things," which can relate to playing chess as well as life.

(Period 3)

Thursday, December 24, 2009 4:26:00 PM  
Blogger Dennisaur (Trinh) said...

Chess from the Windy West

“Rules of the Game”

The characters just keep getting more interesting as the story progresses. I do wonder why her mother and father chose to name her after the street they live on. Waverly got treated uniquely by her mother for being a prodigy in chess. It seems a little unfair for her brothers. The magazine part was a little unexpected for me. I wasn’t sure what Lifetime magazine had to do with this chapter. I assume she was just trying to prove a point. Waverly’s mom is a bit boastful of her daughter’s amazing chess feats, but she keeps pushing Waverly more and more by saying “better off losing less [pieces]” (97). At some moments, I saw that Waverly put chess above her family. Anyways, Waverly just seems like a prodigy who has problems with her mother.

Waverly is a child prodigy whom has a passion for chess. Her name, Waverly, has the word wave in it which made me think about the winds she follows when she plays chess. Her personality is revealed at first through her obsession for chess, but inside she is just like any other child who hates it when their parents embarrass them. In the beginning of the chapter, she asks her mother many questions and I can conclude that Waverly is a child who seeks knowledge. I see she has a passion for seeking knowledge because she wanted to play chess better, so she read many books on chess to play it better. Waverly is a child of opportunity.

First of all, the conflict is human vs. human. Waverly has a battle with her mother, Lindo. Waverly can’t deal with her mother’s bragging and pride; she’s embarrassed when her mother goes around saying “This is my daughter Wave-ly Jong” (99). It is resolved when she runs away and eventually comes home anyways. It seems like her mother was using Waverly to make herself look better. I think you should praise a child, but not to that extent.

The theme in this chapter is most likely “sometimes you have to lose pieces to get ahead” (97). In this chapter, Waverly sacrificed her relationship between her mother and herself to get ahead in her chess techniques or more importantly life. Therefore, the chess board can symbolize life and the pieces can symbolize obstacles or new beginnings.

Thursday, December 24, 2009 7:51:00 PM  
Blogger A.o.D said...

1. Invisibility
2. Rules of the Game
3. I think this chapter really emphasizes how important obedience is to Chinese parents. Like the allegory in the beginning, once you disobey your parents, something bad will happen to you. Even though Waverly didn’t physically get hurt at the end of the chapter, she was ignored by her family and went into her dark room alone, which was kind of like her “punishment.” I felt that Waverly’s mother was like a stereotypical Chinese parent who showed off his/her children when they made achievement. At first humble about Waverly’s continuous wins, she later becomes arrogant and too prideful, and began telling everyone that Waverly is her daughter. She got annoying and acted like she was the one who taught Waverly how to play chess, although she probably did have a part in it because she taught Waverly “the art of invisible strength” at age six (89). I also liked how Waverly beat everyone in the chess tournaments she went to. Especially at the part when she was playing against the fifty-years-old adult, I found myself hoping that she would win. I was confused about why Waverly ran away. Even if she was afraid, her mother wouldn’t have done anything to her in public right there.
4. I think Waverly is a really intelligent girl. She won all the chess championships that she attended. This intelligence was shown earlier in the chapter when she was picking out presents at the church. Waverly was observant as she noticed what the other children received. She also knew to test the weight of the presents and determine if they’re good or not. Later in the chapter, Waverly used her talent in chess to weasel her way out of chores. She got a whole bedroom to herself while her two brothers had to sleep in the living room. She also didn’t have to finish her food during meals. I’m not sure if these were intentionally planned out or childishly thought of on the spot.
5. I think the main conflict of this chapter is human vs. human: Waverly against her mother. As shown in the last scene when Waverly goes into her dark room alone, a chessboard appears in her head where the opponent has “two angry black slits” for eyes, which I noticed was similar to the description of Waverly’s mother in the market when her “eyes turned into dangerous black slits.” The opponent also says, “Strongest wind cannot be seen,” which is what Waverly’s mother said in the beginning of the chapter. I think it shows that her ultimate opponent is her mother. Waverly doesn’t understand the reason of her mother’s overly prideful behaviors. She also feels that her mother is a bother and tells her to go away when she’s practicing her chess strategies. On the other hand, Waverly’s mother, like any other parent, feels that Waverly’s achievements should be also credited to her. As previously stated, she taught Waverly the art of invisible strength at age six, which helped her win arguments and respect, “and eventually chess games.” This conflict doesn’t get resolved by the end because Waverly’s mother announced that “we not concerning this girl,” which also ties back to the allegory that you’ll be punished for not listening to your parents.
6a. I think the theme of this chapter is shown in the line that Waverly’s mother repeated: “Strongest wind cannot be seen.” It is also the art of invisible strength. I think it means that some of the insignificant things in life are actually the most powerful. As taught to Waverly at age six, she got the bag of salted plums when she didn’t cry for it. In order to get as many things in life that you want, you have to be secretive about it. Also in chess, Waverly understood that “it is a game of secrets in which one must show and never tell” because that way, she would get what she wants (95). I think the life lesson is that invisible strength would get you the farthest in life.
Alice La, Period 4

Saturday, December 26, 2009 1:45:00 PM  
Blogger cupofnoodles said...

Alvin Lee 4th Period

1. Life is a Chess Game
2. Rules of the Game
3. I believe this chapter has an interesting way of mixing together the game of chess and life itself. Amy Tan uses Waverly, a normal Chinese girl of an innocent childhood, and the introduction of chess in her life to change the way she feels, acts, and the way she sees life. Waverly, as a champion of chess, received special treatment because of it and did what she wanted. Waverly began to block out the people who cared for her, her family, and instead focused on chess and improving her game. This eventually led her to being alone by the end of the chapter because of how she treated others. I think Waverly started complaining about things that were not in her favor, because she believed she could have things her way after her victories at the chess tournament. From the starting vignette of this chapter, I see that patience has its rewards but I don’t understand what Waverly’s mother meant when she said, “Wise guy, he not go against wind. In Chinese we say, Come from South, blow with wind—poom!—North will follow. Strongest wind cannot be seen.” Maybe she meant that power does not always come from strength but from things that cannot be seen, like words. I came to think this because Amy Tan mentions the art of invisible strength and, following that, a strategy for winning arguments. Also, near the end of this chapter, is opponent on the other side of the chessboard supposed to be Waverly’s mother because the description of her angered mother, the dangerous black slits, and the description of the opponent match? I can see at the end of the chapter that Amy Tan compares chess to Waverly being alone but I don’t understand the meaning behind the ending.
4. Waverly, having been an obedient child when she was little, started to complain and talk back to family after winning her chess tournament. This shows that Waverly believes that her success would lead to the giving of special treatment from those around her and that they would treat her better. Also, when Waverly was blocking out her mother when concentrating on chess and talking back to her mother while they were shopping, shows that she was disrespectful towards family.
5. I believe the main conflict in “Rules of the Game” is external and human vs. human, between Waverly and her family. In my opinion, the main conflict is that Waverly starts to break apart from her family due to her chess addiction; because her brothers stopped playing with her and her mother no longer concerns herself with her own daughter, Waverly. This conflict isn’t solved by the end of the chapter because Waverly feels that she is alone and wonders what to do next.
6a. I believe the theme is that we are stronger together and in unison then when we are separate and divided. The saying, “strongest wind cannot be seen,” says that unity, which cannot be seen, is the strongest, because not only is it used at the beginning and end of the chapter, but it also was said by Waverly’s mother to Waverly. In addition, the reference to the chessboard and that the black pieces that stay together as a whole overcome the white pieces that fall off the board one by one, shows that unity overcomes individuality.

Saturday, December 26, 2009 5:02:00 PM  
Blogger MoJoAnna chicken :] said...

1. Life Savers Gummies are Yummy Mmmmmm :3

2. "Rules of the Game"

3. I kind of liked this chapter. It was a bit less confusing than the whole Moon Lady thing. I loved Amy Tan's descriptions; I could almost imagine and picture the whole setting in my head. I also found it interesting that the character is named after a street. Personally, I would never name my child after a street; that was kind of weird to me. In my opinion, Waverly's character is pretty easy to relate to. Parents often demand a lot from children these days; just "good" is never enough. Even though Waverly wins her chess games, her mother is still not quite satisfied, and states that Waverly can do "better" and lose less pieces. I mean, like really? Seriously? Geez, the girl already won the game; what else does her mom want out of her?

4. I think that Waverly's mother isn't a very good parent. Her mother has much pride, but I think that sometimes it clouds her judgement as a parent. For example, when Waverly's brother receives a used chess set for Christmas, her mother tells him "to throw the chess set away" (92). She does not want someone else's garbage, and she surely does not want her children to accept a hand-me-down chess set. Lindo Jong's pride is also portrayed when she boasts about Waverly's achievements. I think that Lindo is not a very good mother because she uses her daughter to look good, when she herself can only speak broken English; she can't even pronounce her own daughter's name correctly (her name is Waverly, not Wave-ly). Also, Lindo never, or barely ever praises Waverly. I don't understand why she does this; I mean if she's proud of her daughter, why can't she just say what she feels, and tell her daughter she did a good job or something.

5. The conflict in this chapter is between Waverly and her mother (human vs. human). Waverly gets constantly annoyed by her mother's actions. Her mother always watches her as she plans her moves at home, breathing on Waverly as she thinks (yes, I think that's very annoying), and her mom also annoys her by bragging about Waverly's achievement's. When Waverly voices her complaints to her mother, her mother is deeply offended and responds with "just sharp silence" (99). By the end of the chapter, Waverly is still fighting her opponent, "two angry black slits" (101); the conflict between Waverly and her mother is not resolved.

6. This chapter relates to the allegory at the beginning of the section. In the allegory, the child does not listen to her mother and certain consequences befall her. In the "Rules of the Game", Waverly rebels against her mother, and faces consequences of her own. I think the lesson to be learned is that one should respect and listen to one's parents. In most cases, our parents are right, and their intentions are for our own good. As an elder, a parent has more experience. In this chapter, Waverly can win at chess, but she can't win against her mother at life. She does not listen to her mother, and in the end she is left alone to ponder her next move.

Saturday, December 26, 2009 5:05:00 PM  
Blogger em, ily! said...

Whiz[ard] of Waverly Place!
(a.k.a. "Rules of the Game")

3. I think that...
* When I first read the mini opening about "biting back your tongue", I realized, "Hey, that sounds like me!" Once a young Asian child, I have learned that if you follow your parents' orders, they get what they want and you get what you want.
* Why didn't she want to know what her soup was made of?
* Oh dear, the descriptions of food smelled captured me as if the delicacies were in my room and I craved for dim sum real bad (which I eventually got ;) ).
* Why was the alley the best playground?
* When I read about the Ping Yuen Fish Market, I thought about my friend telling me how she had always wanted to buy a tortoise and raise it as a pet, instead of making it into food.
* Waverly's mom seems to threaten her in a caring way, just like my mom! "Don't do that and don't do this or else your fingers will get chopped off!" or something of that sort. I know parents mean well when they say that, but it's sort of creepy.
* I didn't understand why Amy Tan talked about Hong Sing's, the cafe. It was not relevant to the rest of the story.
* Why did Waverly's mom tell her that Chinese people "do best torture"?
* When Vincent asked Waverly, "Why is the sky blue? Why must you always ask stupid questions?" I was reminded of the times when my cousins were young and used to annoy me with these "Why"s.
* I think it's typical that Waverly's mother would encourage her to enter the chess tournament in such a cold and indirect manner. My parents often do that to me.
* Waverly's mother is proud, too proud, if you ask me. She shows off her daughter in a way that reflects the fact that she has nothing else to be proud of; therefore, she uses her daughter as a trophy to show off and brag to the world. However, Waverly isn't a trophy. She has feelings.
* The ending was very mysterious and it made me want to read more about what happened to their relationship.

4. After her mom scolds her about "this American rules," Waverly decides to take matters into her own hands. She goes and borrows all sorts of books about chess, looks up words in the dictionary, and practically learns the game from every perspective that she could. That proves to me that she is a dedicated person, someone who might need that nudge/hint from her mother about "finding out by herself" and seeks out her own answers. Waverly is someone who would depend on nobody but herself, an independent individual.

5. I will admit that I didn't fully understand what the conflict is. I thought maybe it was Waverly vs. her mother (human vs. human) because her mother was always pressuring Waverly and bragging about her as if she was an inanimate object and Waverly always kept her feelings inside until the very end where she yells at her mom. However, I realized the conflict was her heritage. It was man vs. self, an internal one, where Waverly's two cultures (Chinese and American) battle it out with each other. How do I know? Um, I don't, but this is what I think. Maybe it's the way Amy Tan juxtaposes her two cultures throughout the whole story, comparing the contented mystery of her Chinese soup to the luring secrets of American chess and Chinese etiquette to American snottiness, (NO OFFENSE). At the end, I don't think the conflict was resolved. It was more of a "To be continued..." ending, to me. Maybe Waverly has realized that her two cultures are intertwined and she cannot get rid of one or the other, but nothing hinted at this conclusion.

6. One of the themes stated would definitely have to be "Is shame you fall down nobody push you" (96). You should realize that trying and failing is better than not trying at all. Every time you try, it is counted as success. You should never give up before starting. That's just ... bogus. This is definitely an important theme and a moral for life.

Emily Huynh, Period 4!

Saturday, December 26, 2009 10:24:00 PM  
Blogger EthanJosephLe said...

1. "Secrets and Strategies"

2. "Rules of the Game"

3. This chapter was pretty confusing, mostly because it was about chess. I have never even attempted to play real chess, and online chess tells you where you are allowed to move the pieces. I also didn't understand many of the metaphors and symbolism that related to chess. The story, however, was pretty good because it was about a child who is embarrassed by her mother. I think that many kids can relate to it because all of our parents do embarrassing things at time. It's funny how Waverly's mom says that her winning is just luck, yet she shows it off when her daughter wins a lot. I didn't understand what happened at the end when her mom said to not concern her, and the thing with the strongest wind.

4. I think that Waverly, like her mother, is a very smart girl. I believe that in a previous chapter, her mother was the one who escaped from being in a marriage. Her mother used strategies and plans to try to escape, as Waverly does with the game of chess. In a way, I think she's more like her mother than she realizes. She's also somewhat immature, and she somewhat believes that chess is her own world, and doesn't want her mother to be a part of it.

5. The main conflict is between Waverly and her mom, which is human vs human. Waverly doesn't like the fact that her mom goes around showing off to people that her daughter is very good at chess. I think that her mom might have gone overboard with the whole being proud thing, but Waverly should've understood that her mom's pride comes from her victories.

6. The game of chess is a symbol in this chapter. I believe that it symbolizes life, because life is a game of strategies and rules. You must try to overcome your traps and obstacles and try to escape them, and also try to get ahead of everyone by using your knowledge.

Sunday, December 27, 2009 3:01:00 PM  
Blogger aly_n_4 said...

Chess Princess.
"Rules of the Game"
3. I thought this vignette was actually pretty straight forward. It was interesting and not confusing like the previous vignettes. I thought it was kind of cool how Waverly, a young Chinese girl, learned and developed the skills to play chess professionally. She learned the base of the game and becomes interested in the game from her brothers who she isn't very close to.One day while walking home from school, she comes across a group of old men playing chess and sits down for a game. She meets Lau Po who soon teaches her the "rules of the game" and secret moves to the game. After this, Waverly becomes so interested in the game, she begins to check out books about the game from the library and becomes a great chess player, beating all of the men in Chinatown. She enters tournaments and becomes a national chess champion. While becoming this great chess player, she is not satisfying her mother, Lindo Jong. Her mother tells everyone that Waverly is just winning by luck. I felt sympathy towards Waverly because her mom is constantly nagging her to do better when Waverly is already a national chess player.
4. In this short story, Lindo Jong, Waverly's mother, comes across as a very strict and harsh woman. When Waverly won her first chess tournament, her mother simply told her that her play wasn't good enough and that she has to lose less. Also, while Waverly would be practicing her mother would be standing over her watching every move. This to me shows that Lindo Jong wants Waverly to be perfect. Lindo shows this by being more hard on Waverly to do the best she can do.
5. The main conflict would have to be man vs. man, which is Waverly vs. her mother, Lindo Jong . Throughout this vignetter, they get in many disagreements. After Waverly has won many tournaments, her mother bragged about her which really bugged Waverly. Waverly had told her to stop and her mother got mad at her. It almost seemed like her mother was showing off Waverly's skills. Waverly runs away for a couple of hours and when she returns, her mother tells her "We not concerning this girl" (100). This conflict does not get resolved because when she returns home, Lindo does not try to talk to Waverly about the situation.
6. In this chapter, I think the chessboard symbolizes life. Throughout the story, Waverly learns the rules of the game, or the rules of life. Waverly learns that she has to have different plans/secrets to win the game, just like in life, you have to make plans for your future in order to be successful.

Sunday, December 27, 2009 6:19:00 PM  
Blogger Christina Nguyen said...

Moving Across the Board
“Rules of the Game”

REACTION: From the very beginning of this chapter, Waverly Jong surprised me of how she was able characterize the difference between a nice gift with a big gift. Younger kids aren’t able to realize that and they are usually most drawn to the bigger gifts thinking it contains the best present. With this kind of mind-set, she was able to make more of an old chess set then her older brothers did. She developed her skills from determination and long hours of learning different chess moves. Since she had become a chess expect and her winnings eventually got to her head, she wasn’t forced to do her usual chores and received more privilege than her siblings. I would get annoyed of my mother always bragging about me because it just seems as if she only brings me to places to show me off and have people praise her. However, I know that her mother is just really proud of what Waverly has accomplished.
CHARACTER: Waverly Jong’s mother has the typical mother instinct of trying to be apart of her child’s life. She tried to oversee everything and wants to know about every aspect of Waverly’s life. As a child, they want to be independent and as far away from their parents as possible. She supports her daughter and tries to push her to be better. This is mostly for her to be proud of herself and how much she has accomplished with her own daughter. She allowed her daughter to be excused from chores and usual household laws just because Waverly has won many chess tournaments. This isn’t fair for the other siblings. Her mother should treat each child equally.
CONFLICT: The conflict within in chapter would be a human vs. Human because Waverly Jong and her mother have the typical mother, daughter relationship. They dont agree on the same things and have different points of view on everything in their lives. Waverly just wants to be independent and do her own things, especially with Chess. She doesn’t want her mom nagging at her about everything and bringing her everywhere just to brag. On the other hand, Waverly’s mother wants to supervise and watch Waverly’s every move. Her mother wants to protect her and show it off to everyone in town. These are the reasons why they don’t get along with one another. The conflict never really got resolved because in the end, Waverly’s mother is disappointed in her daughter with the way she treated her mom.
The board game, chess is a symbol in this chapter because it is one of the only thing that appears through the story. To me, it symbolizes life with how we have to follow many rules through life and consequences will happen if these rules aren’t followed. The more you play, the better you get at chess and you develop many techniques and strategy. With life, the older you are and the more life you’ve endured, you become wiser.

Sunday, December 27, 2009 6:34:00 PM  
Blogger Arctic said...

Waverly Jong: Future Ruler of the World
Rules of the Game
1. The first impression I got from reading this chapter is this: Waverly is like an evil mastermind, even at that young age. She makes fun of her mother with her questions about Chinese torture, while her mother doesn't know it; she acts a certain, innocent way to look best to the media at her tournaments; she revels in the fact that she doesn't have to do chores because she is good at chess; she learns to hide her secrets both in chess and out of it, and all of this is before her 10th birthday. She is ridiculously sly for a 9 year old girl, and although like many kids I can relate to her embarassment by her mom, I don't like her personality after she becomes famous. If I met her in real life, I would do anything to get away from this smug little brat.

2. Lindo, Waverly's mom, retains her strong, proud personality from The Red Candle, as shown when she brags about her daughter's victories and also when she steadfastly ignores her daughter's whining to teach Waverly a lesson.

3. The main conflict is human vs. human, with Waverly and Lindo clashing repeatedly over small things, such as whether to buy candies or not, as mothers and daughters do. The main cause of this may be that Waverly needs her mother to back off and let her learn on her own, although at th age of nine she's probably better off with her mom's guidance.

4. This chapter focuses on Waverly and her mother's interactions, and Waverly's attempts to escape the influence of her mother. However, the allegory at the beginning tells a similar story, in which a daughter snaps at and disobeys her mother, flees, and ends up falling off her bike. This implies that Waverly's disobedience may lead to bad things happening to her, as she also yells at her mother before running away.

Sunday, December 27, 2009 6:58:00 PM  
Blogger Jonas said...

Game Over
"Rules of the Game"
This chapter was fun to read and fitting that the setting took place over Christmas break. I liked how Waverly eventually became better at chess than Vincent and Wilson, which shows how hard work and dedication can pay off. I can relate to the part where her brothers didn't let her play with them because when I was a kid, my brother wouldn't let me play his games or toys and I had to always bargain and trade something for my turn to play. The part where Bobby Fischer said, "There will never be a woman grand master,(90)" made me wonder if Waverly could have become one in the future. It was unclear if she quit chess or not at the end of the chapter.
Waverly is obviously a very smart nine year old because she is a national chess champion and even deemed a child prodigy. It was wrong that she snapped at her mother in the marketplace, but I don't blame her. Her mother was at fault for bragging to everyone about her daughter. In fact, one of the Chinese morals even say to be humble, not prideful. Waverly's actions show her character to be daring and determined.
The main conflict is human vs. human. Waverly and her mother have opposing views over Chess which annoy her and cause disagreements. For example, when her mom tells her to lose less pieces to win, Waverly says it annoys her. These little battles culminate when Waverly tells her mom that she shouldn't use chess to show off. Waverly's mother seems to give a lot of tough love, but this only annoys Waverly and causes conflict.
At the start of the chapter, it talks about how the "strongest wind cannot be seen" (89). This connects to chess, because many of the tactics used to win are sneaky and hidden moves. Waverly's mother also teachers her the lesson of biting back her tongue at the beginning, but in the end, she ends up lashing out at her mother.

Sunday, December 27, 2009 8:29:00 PM  
Blogger E1ain3 said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

Sunday, December 27, 2009 8:38:00 PM  
Blogger E1ain3 said...

1. Check Mate!
2. Rules of the Game
3. After reading this chapter, I kinda feel a bit bad for Waverly. Waverly seems to be a sweet little girl who enjoys playing chess. However, after finding her own hidden talent, Waverly’s crazy mother, Lindo, continues to push her to play chess. Instead of motivating and encouraging her daughter, Lindo yells at Waverly, criticizing her every move. Don’t you think it’s kind of hypocritical how Lindo wanted Vincent to throw the chess set away in the first place, but wants Waverly to play now?
4. I think Waverly is a very smart and determined girl. Becoming a national chess champion at the age of 9?! That is very big accomplishment! Waverly Jong is a determined and motivated young girl who succeeds in whatever she puts her heart into.
5. The main conflict in this chapter is human vs. human; Waverly vs. her mother, Lindo. At the end of the chapter, Waverly sits alone in her room, and pictures a chess board. She is on one side facing her mother, the opponent. I don’t think Waverly realize why her mother is so over protective. I guess all parents want their children to succeed. And what better way to encourage your children than to brag about them and make them feel good?
6. This chapter is mostly about the game of chess. Throughout the chapter, we learn about chess and all the techniques used to win the game. In the same way Waverly learns to defeat her chess opponents, she learns to overcome all the obstacles in her life. So, you can see that Amy Tan uses the chess board to symbolize life.

Sunday, December 27, 2009 8:38:00 PM  
Blogger WeeeeniFAM said...

1.Bite your tongue!
2."Rules of the Game"
3.Reaction! This chapter was a bit typical for me, since it reminded me of the common story of how a girl from an underprivileged area is suddenly able to discover a wonderful talent that takes her to her fame. (Hint: Akeelah and the Bee!) Aside from that, I felt as if this story was really jerky in the sense that the story is moving along beautifully as Waverly is able to rise to her glory in the world of chess but suddenly, all is ruined as she dishonors her mom and shames herself. I personally, did not find many things that would foreshadow the epic event during the scene at the Chinese market, so the big outburst from Waverly was a complete shock to me!
4.The character that I have chosen to post on is the protagonist, Waverly. Aside from her awesome name, her transformation from a simple girl that played on the alleys of Chinatown to a complex girl who is at the top of the world of chess. In the beginning, she was just a simple Chinatown girl who didn’t even realize that she was poor, since all that mattered to her at the time was to have fun and to have 3 meals everyday. As her obsession for chess is born and grows, we see that her priorities in life drastically change as she stops playing in the alleys and starts to coop herself in her room in order to think about future chess strategies. Her transformation all goes uphill as she becomes extremely successful, but we soon discover that her transformation takes a turn for the worse as she speaks out against her mother and causes her mom to “not have concerning” for her anymore
5.I think that there is a conflict between Waverly and her mother that is developed from Waverly’s obsession for the game of chess. At first, it was all fun and games, but that soon changed as Waverly begun to distance herself from her family as she focuses on her chess matches. Her mom seemed to have no problem with the new distance between them, since she allowed Waverly to leave the dinner table early to go to her room for more chess. She was also exceedingly prideful of her daughter as well, so she obviously did not have a problem at all. The conflict arose and reached its peak as Waverly finally yelled at her mom and caused her mom to not concern for her anymore. So in a sense, the conflict could be seen as a chain reaction. First a conflict between Waverly and Chess is born as chess drives her away from her normal life, and from this conflict, a new conflict that causes Waverly to dishonor her mother is then born.
6.This story really connects to the allegory in the beginning of the story, since in both stories, the main characters are all consequently punished for speaking out against their mother’s wishes. In the allegory, the girl spoke against her mother’s warning and caused her mother to ultimately not care about her daughter anymore. She stopped telling her daughter about what would happen if she were to break through the boundaries of the play area and consequently allowed her daughter to be killed by the taxi cab. In the chapter, Waverly is also severely punished by her mom through not being concerned for anymore, since after not “holding her tongue back”, her mother got extremely mad at her and virtually kicked her out of their family! This could have also been a theme/message in the story, since we are told to hold our thoughts back in both story, but I, however, do not think that this message is appropriate, since holding things back can also be equal being dishonest!

Sunday, December 27, 2009 8:52:00 PM  
Blogger N`Jess said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

Monday, December 28, 2009 1:35:00 AM  
Blogger N`Jess said...

1. Your Move
2. Rules of the Game
3. I thought that this vignettes was interesting. The readers get to learn a little bit about chess, but was there really a difference in the rules of Chinese and American chess? I think it was weird for a little kid to play with an old guy and the old guy agreeing to play with the Life Savers. I thought that this vignettes allowed readers to relate to Waverly because her mom embarrassed her just like most parents embarrassed their children. I felt bad for Waverly though because her mom kept on telling everyone that she won by luck, and it seemed that she was not proud of Waverly.
4. I thought that Waverly was a smart girl who received her skills from her mother. She was able to create a strategy to help her win, just like how her mother was able to get out of her marriage with her strategies. Also, Waverly was a very determinate person, just like her mother. She determined to play chess and win, just like how her mother was determined to get out of her marriage without disgracing her family. I thought that Waverly was very similar to her mother.
5. The main conflict of this vignettes were Man vs. Self and Man vs. Man. It’s Man vs. Self because in the last page, Waverly was not certain of what she should do next. I thought that it was her two cultures that made her unsure of what to do. It’s Man vs. Man because Waverly saw herself with her mom as her opponent, and her mom was winning. It was also because her mother was always pressuring her to do things and the disagreements they had.
6. I thought that chess was a symbol of life. In this chapter, we not only learn about the rule of the game, we also learn rules of life, and the consequences of not following the rules. In the game of chess, we developed strategies, and in life, we also developed our on strategies of how we do things depending on our experiences. I also thought that the black pawn and the white knight symbolized Lindo (Chinese culture) and Waverly (American culture), and the chessboard symbolized their home. At their house, the two cultures, the American and Chinese, clashed, but mom won the game.
Jessica Hartono, period 4

Monday, December 28, 2009 1:37:00 AM  
Blogger Candy God Cody Dang said...

2. Rules of the Game
3. I thought that this chapter was very interesting. I really liked the way Amy Tan described the competitive game of chess. The writing is just amazing, and I really like the game of chess but Amy Tan really described the nature of chess—a game where you show secrets, but never tell. Her descriptive writing techniques are really awe-inspiring. The story itself is also pretty clever, and I really like how the two brothers use lifesaver candies as replacement pieces, because I remember doing the same with balls of paper, and many other chess players can also probably relate to it, because it’s easy to lose the pieces. The title was also really fitting and I just thought that it was amazingly clever. I just had a few problems with the ending. I can’t really figure out what happened with the bones and everything. I also didn’t really like how Waver-Ly ran from her mother into the alleyway. I really can’t relate to that in any way and I sort of thought that Waver-Ly was being ridiculous. Also, I really didn’t like the mother of Waver-Ly. She always complains about Waver-Ly’s games, even when she wins. She doesn’t understand that you have to make trades in Chess, and there’s no way you can beat someone and keep all of your pieces. I am also a bit mad that her mother lives vicariously through her daughter just because she can’t do anything remarkable. I don’t really have a problem with her mom being proud, but when she takes all of the credit for her daughter’s achievements and goes to stores just to brag about her daughter, she crosses the line. In addition, she even complains about her daughter’s performance. I don’t understand why the mother can’t understand this. She doesn’t need to understand English in order to be at least a little reasonable.
4. Waver-Ly’s mother was a very confusing character. I really feel bad for Waver-Ly, and as I continued to read, I also felt her frustration as her mother failed to understand some very important mechanics of chess. I also felt how she was annoyed and embarrassed when her mother went around the market to show her off. I thought Waver-LY was an interesting character, having two older brothers who play a game that she becomes interested in, and ultimately becoming the best of the chess players. Waver-Ly is a good chess player who has pressure from her mother, and I feel bad for her because a game that was meant for fun was turned into a matter of prestige and something that must be won. I understand how parents should be strict about scholarly matters, but getting strict about how a game is played is just terrible. Perhaps Waver-Lu’s mother received similar treatment when she was her age, and perhaps she is taking an opportunity to feel that sense of hierarchy.
5. The main conflict in this chapter is probably the conflict inside of Waver-Ly, because she really doesn’t like the kind of attention that her mother forces upon her. This is a very big problem, and since the game Waver-Ly enjoyed ceased to be enjoyable, Waver-Ly is definitely upset. The conflict is also between Waver-Ly and her mother, because her mother never understands no matter how many times Waver-Ly explains. Waver-Ly’s mother has expectations that are impossible to overstate, and never lets up on her hardened nature.
6. Again, Amy Tan really has a gift for writing magnificent pieces of descriptive writing. Every idea is conveyed very clearly through Amy Tan’s writing skills, and really sets the environment for the elements of fiction to play through her story. She is able to create clear characters and show the conflict well without difficulty to see the character’s feelings on the matter. I really enjoyed this chapter thanks to Amy Tan’s amazing descriptions.

Monday, December 28, 2009 1:01:00 PM  
Blogger m.méndez said...

1.) White Pawn vs. Black Pawn

2.) Rules of the Game

3.) This vignette was rather interesting and I liked that Waverly was a chess expert because I can relate to her because I also loved to play chess when I was in elementary school. It didn’t surprise me when Waverly’s mom would show her off to strangers saying that Waverly is her daughter. But it did shock me when Waverly told her mother that she is embarrassed of her and so her mom announced to the family that they are not “concerning” with Waverly. I was confused when Waverly is questioning about the movement of the pawn and so her mother tells Waverly that it is American rules. Are there Chinese moves then? The end also confused me because it leaves the reader wondering if Waverly and her mother ever get along again and what is Waverly’s “next move”? The paragraph at the end was quite confusing too.

4.) I think that Waverly is a type of person who puts passion and commitment to anything that she enjoys doing. In this specific case, Waverly takes interest in chess that “holds elaborate secrets waiting to be untangled” (93). Because she is intrigued, and begs her brothers to let her join, it proves that Waverly has such longing to learn and play chess. She even “offered [her] lifesavers as replacements for the buttons that filled in for the missing pieces” (93) and it also proves that Waverly is willing to give up something that she treasures just to play chess. In addition, she goes to the library to learn all the movements of each chess piece and different strategic moves as well. All of that complicated work paid off because the result is her being a chess champion at such a young age because she has dedication and is zealous.

5.) The main conflict in the vignette is external and is man vs. man (Waverly vs. her mother) because her mother shows Waverly off to everyone they pass by and Waverly feels shame of her mother. Waverly knows that her mother is proud of her but doesn’t like the fact that her mother uses her to show off. Waverly is proud of herself but is humble and it shows when she tells her mother to stop saying that she is her daughter. Another problem both mother and daughter have is when the mom tells Waverly that she looses too many pieces and she doesn’t get that “you need to lose pieces to get ahead” (97) and everything is about luck. Like in chess, Waverly is the white pawn and her mother is the black pawn. They both are eventually against each other.

6a.) I think that the theme of this vignette is: the key to success is invisible strength like in chess and in life. In chess, there are many pieces with different movements and the “invisible strength” comes from setting up multiple traps for your opponent’s pieces and in life, by being invisible, you can win arguments and earn respect as was stated in the second sentence of the vignette.

Michelle Méndez
4th Period

Monday, December 28, 2009 1:27:00 PM  
Blogger ooglyboogly said...

Jodie Chan
Period 3
2)Rules of the Game
3)Once again, Amy Tan does an amazing job on inserting local color and the lifestyle of Waverly but even so, I do not think that this vignette was as exciting as the other vignettes. In fact, I think that this chapter is very boring compared to the others because there is not a lot of action going on. Waverly basically discovers her love for chess, is a chess prodigy, and gets annoyed with her mother. I do not like Waverly because she is too obsessed with chess and life revolved around one thing is not good for her because if she fails at chess, her whole world will crash and life would become meaningless. It is not good for the people around her either. Waverly’s family’s lifestyle is completely changed because of chess. Her brothers have to do Waverly’s chores, Waverly gets to leave the dinner table without finishing her food, and Waverly gets to get a room all to herself. I do not understand the last page of the chapter. Does Waverly feel troubled or what? What does it mean by Waverly feeling lighter as her chess pieces get beaten? What are the American rules that the mother keep talking about?
4)Waverly Jong’s family goes to a Christmas party where each child chooses a present from under the Christmas tree. When Vincent Jong gets an obviously used chess set, the mother thanks the unknown benefactor profusely, saying how it was too valuable to give away, until the benefactor reveals herself and accepts her thanks. This act of thanks shows that the mother knows to be thankful and polite. When the Jong family gets home, the mother shows that she is outraged and immediately tells the son to throw out the used chess set because the lady ‘“not want it. [Jong family] not want it”’ (pg. 93). This shows that the mother is too proud and dignified to keep a present that has been obviously used. She thinks that getting the present is like getting trash, an insult to her and her family. Thanking the benefactor and then telling her son to throw away the present shows that the mother uses “the art of invisible strength,” keeping her opinions and thoughts to herself and then revealing her true intentions later. The mother thanks the benefactor, not because she likes the present but to find out who the benefactor is so she knows who gave their family such an inconsiderate gift. She keeps her true feelings hidden until she gets what she wants. Waverly’s mother is a proud and dignified person who keeps her true purposes unspoken and acts politely.
5)The main conflict is an external conflict: human vs. human. Waverly went against her mother. She yelled at her mother, telling her to quit telling her what to do in chess and to stop showing her off to the world. She also went against opponents in chess games.
6B) The alley symbolizes childhood. Pawn represents rules that must be obeyed in life. Lau Po symbolizes knowledge and growth. The chess set symbolizes the art of invisible strength because chess is all about secretly maneuvering pieces to trap the opponent, using silent, cunning moves to achieve a goal.

Monday, December 28, 2009 3:43:00 PM  
Blogger Maggs said...

1. Girl Said, “CHECKMATE”

2. “Rules of the Game”

3. This chapter was harder for me to understand than the last. When she talked about the opponent in the room with Waverly, I was confused at first, and had to reread it a few tiems. I think Tan made her point that Waverly’s mom had broken english, but it made it harder for me to understand what her mom was saying. Especially when she says, “Everytime people come out from foreign country, must know rules. You not know, judge say, Too bad, go back. They not telling you why so you can use their way go forward…” (94). After reading it another two or three times, I figured she was talking about aliens immigrating to america.

4. In this chapter Lindo Jong portrays the stereotypical “Asian Mom” of having high expectations and boastful. Although her daughter Waverly was winning the chess matches, she still expected more, such as when she tells Waverly that it is better if she loses less pieces. She shows her boastful side, when she tells everyone in the market place Waverly’s name and that she is her daughter. I am assuming that Lindo Jong thought everyone knew that Waverly had won all of the chess matches and was recongnized in Life magazine.

5. The main conflict in this
chapter is human vs. human, between Waverly and Lindo Jong. They do not agree on chess, until she wins. Then her mom begins to support her, although she was still not fully satisfied. Lindo’s form of support aggitated Waverly like when she tells Waverly to lose less pieces. In the end of the chapter, she pictures facing her mom in a chess match, which she is losing. I think the conflict was not completely resolved, because it leaves the me wondering about the type of relationship stands between Waverly and Lindo.

6b. I think that the game of chess symbolizes the life. The white pieces symbolizing the new or untainted people. Who could be kids, who haven’t fully learned all that is out there, or could be immigrants for other countries who are foreign to the American traditions. The black pieces symbolizes the people who know more, the adults who seem to know their way around situations and are filled with knowledge. The game itself takes a lot of rules and strategies in order to win or succeed, which can also be applied to life. In life people must follow rules and form their own strategies to surpass obstacles.

Monday, December 28, 2009 4:24:00 PM  
Blogger Maggs said...

1. Girl Said, “CHECKMATE”

2. “Rules of the Game”

3. This chapter was harder for me to understand than the last. When she talked about the opponent in the room with Waverly, I was confused at first, and had to reread it a few tiems. I think Tan made her point that Waverly’s mom had broken english, but it made it harder for me to understand what her mom was saying. Especially when she says, “Everytime people come out from foreign country, must know rules. You not know, judge say, Too bad, go back. They not telling you why so you can use their way go forward…” (94). After reading it another two or three times, I figured she was talking about aliens immigrating to america.

4. In this chapter Lindo Jong portrays the stereotypical “Asian Mom” of having high expectations and boastful. Although her daughter Waverly was winning the chess matches, she still expected more, such as when she tells Waverly that it is better if she loses less pieces. She shows her boastful side, when she tells everyone in the market place Waverly’s name and that she is her daughter. I am assuming that Lindo Jong thought everyone knew that Waverly had won all of the chess matches and was recongnized in Life magazine.

5. The main conflict in this chapter is human vs. human, between Waverly and Lindo Jong. They do not agree on chess, until she wins. Then her mom begins to support her, although she was still not fully satisfied. Lindo’s form of support aggitated Waverly like when she tells Waverly to lose less pieces. In the end of the chapter, she pictures facing her mom in a chess match, which she is losing. I think the conflict was not completely resolved, because it leaves the me wondering about the type of relationship stands between Waverly and Lindo.

6b. I think that the game of chess symbolizes the life. The white pieces symbolizing the new or untainted people. Who could be kids, who haven’t fully learned all that is out there, or could be immigrants for other countries who are foreign to the American traditions. The black pieces symbolizes the people who know more, the adults who seem to know their way around situations and are filled with knowledge. The game itself takes a lot of rules and strategies in order to win or succeed, which can also be applied to life. In life people must follow rules and form their own strategies to surpass obstacles.

Monday, December 28, 2009 4:25:00 PM  
Blogger Linhwaslike said...

1.“See the endgame before the game begins”
2.Waverly Jong: Rules of the Game
3.I liked this chapter because I think it relates to many people. I think many people have excelled in a particular hobby to the extent where they have gained a reputation for it, and during their time of triumph, their parents bragged about their success. However, as these parents boasted to others, whether they were proud of how far their child had come or maybe wanted to gain a reputation themselves, they forgot what mattered most: their child. In this chapter, Waverly didn’t like how her mother showed her off to all of Chinatown because she didn’t enter chess tournaments to gain the popularity of the crowd, but simply because she loved the game. I thought Amy Tan had a good story line in this vignette, and it was easier to follow than previous vignettes. I didn’t completely smoothly sail through this chapter, though. I was confused when she described her game strategies, mostly because they had unusual names. They reminded me of football plays with a little twist. You don’t hear names, such as “run right”. No, you hear names like “The Surprise from the Sleeping Guard.” I guess I found that interesting in the same sense. Questions that came up were “why does Waverly’s mother constantly put down ‘American rules’?” and during Waverly’s visualization of a game of chess with a strong opponent at the end of the chapter, what does ‘her next move’ really mean? Does it symbolize something other than her next strike on the black and white chessboard?”
4.The main character in this vignette is Waverly Jong. Already determined at the age of seven, I think the child is admirable. She is a young girl who seeks interest in chess when her brother, Vincent, receives a chessboard for Christmas. He explains the rules to her, but along the way, Waverly questions everything. Insisted by her mother, she finds out why the rules are the way they are, which explains why the chapter is titled, “The Rules of the Game.” The fact that Waverly picked up a game she knew nothing of and ended up becoming Chinatown’s chess champion makes reveals her strength in character at a very early age. Tan lets the reader know Waverly is determined and devoted to the game of chess. Although, scenes such as when she yells in the tourist’s face in the beginning of the chapter and when she runs away from her mother at the end of the chapter reveal her rebellious side. Who is Waverly Jong, really? I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.
5.The conflict is easily seen as “human vs. human.” Waverly Jong and her mother do not see eye to eye. Waverly is not dependent on her mother like many daughters are today. Instead, she learns to rely on herself to get the things she desires. For instance, she wanted to become better at chess, and she finds her own personal mentor, Lau Po. With his help, she reaches new heights. Her mom enters her in tournaments, and she is successful. However, her mother continues to tell her to “lose less players” not understanding how to strategize in the chess. Again, they butt heads when Waverly’s mother shows her off the towns people, causing her to run away. When she returns home, her mother responds “We not concerning this girl. This girl not have concerning for us” (100). How will this conflict be resolved?
6. SYMBOLISM: Like many others, I think the chessboard is symbolic of life. Through this chessboard, Waverly thinks before she acts. She strategizes in attempt to know the end result before the game begins. Just like in life, people think before they act. They make plans for their future, and hopefully like Waverly, they are successful.

Monday, December 28, 2009 7:22:00 PM  

Number 1 Chess Tip: Name your moves with randomness to confuse adversary
"Rules of the Game"
1) There were many things in this chapter that I thought was amusing such as when Lindo commented on the chess set when her sons received it as a second hand present. This chess set became a gateway of escape for Waverly as she masters it, in a way this was good but, I thought Lindo's bragging was getting a little out of hand. However; I thought Waverly was out of hand as well when she talked back to her mother. If I did that to my mother, I would have probably gotten a slap to the face.
2. The relationship between Waverly and her mother is one where both parties are in a win-win situation. Lindo gets something to brag about to her friends and Waverly gets to do what she loves most as well as live a life of leisure. When Waverly cuts off her mother's win, she loses everything, this makes their relationship a weak one.
3. Amy Tan used many types of style such as similes, metaphors, and local color. She opened up the setting very well, weaving through with imagery and descriptions of Waverly's feelings and experiences of the place.
4. In this chapter, I learned some Chinese proverbs as well as writing techniques which helped me with my culture story.

Monday, December 28, 2009 9:20:00 PM  
Blogger James said...

1. Chess
2. Rules of the Game
3. I thought the mother of Waverly was like every other parent, bragging about their children’s talent to many people. Amy used strong description along with local color, as usual. When I read the chapter, I found myself amazed by Waverly’s chess abilities. It was irritating to me to read Waverly’s mom’s english, because at times it was difficult to understand.
4. Waverly getting into a fight with her mom, reveals that she has a typical parent-children relationship. Arguing because of her mother embarrassing her is similar to most average teenagers and it reveals that Waverly has her own thoughts as well.
5. The chapter consist of mainly internal conflict. I’d say the chapter is Human vs. Human because of the conflict that takes place between Waverly and her mother. The conflict doesn’t really get resolved in the end.
6C. The chapter is related to the allegory in the essence that Waverly goes against her mother, just like the girl who disobeyed her mom.

James Yu
Period 3

Monday, December 28, 2009 10:18:00 PM  
Blogger Chen said...

1. Want to play The Game?
2. Rules of the Game
3. This chapter was pretty good, it was relatable at some points, but it was kind of confusing at some points too. For example I didn’t understand what Lindo meant when she said “Wise guy, he not go against the wind” reflecting upon the next Chinese saying “Come from the South, blow with wind—poom!—North will follow. Strongest wind cannot be seen” (page 89). Waverly bites her tongue to fight the temptation to buy sweets at the market, and I can relate to that. I used to always buy sweets with my mom at the grocery market when I was a kid. I thought it was interesting that the setting was in San Francisco’s Chinatown because I was just there last week :D! I didn’t fully understand what Lindo meant when she said “Not lazy like American people” (page 91) comparing them to the Chinese descent. It was pretty weird how she became really interested in chess all of a sudden right after her brother received it as a present. I also thought it was weird how Lindo would use her daughter to be recognized in the streets, and as a tool for bragging. I thought it was pretty dumb of Waverly to run away because of that too, and because she was only six years old, it was a stupid thing for her to do, run away into the open streets. Plus, it was stated in this chapter about how her mom always retold the story of how a little girl got smooshed flat onto the streets by a cab.
4. This chapter was a main focus on Waverly Jong, who was six years old at this time. She carelessly run away from her mother one day after she confronted her mothers “annoying” actions of using her to brag. I thought her action was stupid, because she also states before she did this that her mother would always tell her the story about a little girl who got ran over by a cab from running carelessly into the streets. This action revealed that she was careless and angry. The constant bragging of her mother made her feel anger towards her, and she felt the need to yell at her mother. Doing so, she disrespected her in the middle of the streets, and felt the need to just run, right after her mother called her “stupid girl” (page 99) while bumping into an old lady.
5. The main conflict in this story is human vs. human and it does not get resolved in the end. Waverly feels anger towards her mother and runs away, causing them to have a no-talking-to-each-other phase at the end of the book. Waverly is annoyed at her mother for using her to show off in the streets. When Waverly runs off, she gets the idea that maybe someone will eventually come and try to find her. To her surprise no one does, and she ends up going home by herself. Her mothers only words to her once she gets home is “’we are not concerning this girl. This girl have not concerning for us’” (page 100) showing that her mother does not want to have anything to say to her. Waverly then just runs up to her room and takes a nap.
6.I think the chess set that her brother received at the beginning of the book symbolized the start of a bundle of conflicts. It came with two missing pieces and that was a problem because now, they had to find other things to replace the missing pieces. Plus, if Waverly never saw the chess set, she would have probably not be obsessed with it, become skilled in it, and her and her mother would have never gotten in to an argument.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009 1:09:00 AM  
Blogger berries n cream said...

1. Chess Champion
2. Rules of the Game
3. I thought this chapter was really good. There were a lot of descriptions about Waverly’s community and the place she lived in. This chapter is also good because a lot of people can relate to Waverly’s situation with her embarrassing mother. I found it interesting how Waverly picked up the game of chess so quickly and mastered the different techniques.
4. In this chapter, when Waverly Jong knocks over the old woman’s groceries and runs away from her mother, this shows that all the attention that her mother is bringing on her is making her really angry and not caring about anything. Also in this scene, Waverly talks back to Lindo, showing how big of a deal this situation is to Waverly and how it affects her relationship with her mother.
5. The main conflict in this chapter is human vs. human. Waverly is angry with her mother for embarrassing her and bragging to everyone. As a result of this, Waverly runs away. She feels lonely, and that no one understands how she feels. When she returns home, she expected her mother to be happy, but instead found that her mother didn’t care about her whatsoever.
6. I think that Lindo and Waverly talking about winning with more pieces and losing less after the tournament is a symbol. Waverly tells her mother “it’s not how many pieces you lose, Sometimes you need to lose pieces to get ahead.”(page 97) I think this means that it’s not about how much of something you lose, but maybe to move on, you need to get rid of some of the good things to really understand everything. For example, Waverly can lose pieces of her relationship with her mother. Maybe she needed to lose that to understand the hardships of life and how no matter what happens you just need to move on.

-Eric Tam. Period 3

Tuesday, December 29, 2009 3:31:00 PM  
Blogger Tara Lynn. said...

1)Chess Prodigy

2)“Rules of the Game”

3)This chapter actually depicts the lives of many people in real life. Plenty of kids have special talents and gifts, and most of the time their parents take pride in it and tend to boast about them, just like Lindo Jong did. It caught my attention how Waverly’s mom accepted the chess board graciously, saying it’s “too good” and it “cost[s] too much,” (93) but once they got home she told her kids to throw it away. It shows that she has been taught to highly respect anything she receives whether she likes it or not, and she is very polite, but only in public. I’m not sure why, but this bugged me. It also confused me why Lindo Jong had such a strong rebellion against “American traditions.”

4)Waverly Jong was a lot different from most kids her age. She was only 7 years old and already had the patience to actually learn all the rules of chess, and even find the “secrets” of the game. She even made her own chess board out of paper and hung it on her wall so she could study it at night when trying to fall asleep. I thought it was crazy for someone that young to have that much drive and ambition, because kids aren’t usually that mature until later years. And it’s amazing how somebody can win every single game just by knowing a handful of simple tricks. She definitely was some sort of prodigy.

5)I think the main conflict in this chapter was between Waverly and her mother. Lindo Jong, her mom, expected way too much from Waverly. She should have been proud of her daughter, but it was just never enough. It annoyed me how Lindo kept saying that Waverly was winning out of “luck.” It was out of PRACTICE and SKILL, not luck. She was also announcing to everybody who walked by at the market that her daughter was Waverly Jong, the “child prodigy.” Anybody with common sense would know that this is way too much. I would be pretty humiliated if my mother did this, but it wouldn’t be out of shame of my mom, as Lindo takes it. It would just be out of pure embarrassment and the fact that my mother was going overboard with pride.

6)This chapter definitely relates to the allegory at the beginning. In the allegory, the girl goes against her mother and ends up paying for it by falling in the street. In “Rules of the Game,” Waverly goes against her mom by talking back to her and saying how she is embarrassed by her actions. This deeply offends Lindo and she takes it the wrong way, thinking that Waverly is ashamed of her. Waverly ends up running away for a few hours, and when she comes back home, her mother is absolutely furious and speechless.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009 11:10:00 PM  
Blogger Kelsea Wong said...

1.Check Mate
2.Rules of the Game
3. “Rules of the Game” was interesting with all the descriptive rules of the game chess compared to the life of Waverly Jong. The chapter opened up with a splash of childhood memory when Waverly was at a church event during Christmas. I like how Amy Tan describes Waverly’s developed mind that some of the younger kids do not know that Santa is not even Chinese. As her wisdom for chess grows from her older brothers and Lau Po, an observer of the game, Waverly grows an intense relationship with her mother. Her mother a competitive and triumphant woman does not realize the troubled situation Waverly is trap in especially when her mother displays her daughter like a trophy. Waverly’s mother even has a specific acting charade Waverly is to do when figuring out her next turn. Some point in this vignette Waverly does not have any free time and is continuously coming straight from school to practice on her strategies. I enjoy the ending when Waverly visualizes the chess board as her life; herself against her mother. The point how Waverly has no place or no one to turn to that even the world and her family simply looks away.
4. The antagonist of this vignette was Waverly Jong’s mother. The mother played an influent role of her daughter. She was the head of taking care of her three children and supported her daughter’s chess tournaments. The strong-willed mother constantly went crazy over her daughter’s performance as a national chess champion excusing her from everything in life to rehearse her strategies. She even had a detailed manner for her daughter to use when it came to her turn. On Saturday mornings when her mother would go to the market Waverly was force to tag along. Even though it was Waverly’s victorious games that would end up expanding her stardom her mother could not help to brag about her daughter.
5. The main conflict is Waverly Jong’s life being display as a chess board her life being played right before her eyes. Waverly is a national chess champion who feels pressured and annoyed with her mother bragging about her talents. Her mother is practically taking over her life with pep talks about winning, press conference and wardrobe. With all this transition from ordinary to extraordinary her mother rarely has time to be a supporting mother of her actions. Waverly’s mother fires insults, but never has a chance to stop and comment on the hard work she is committing with what she enjoys. The argument between daughter and mother was about the mom using Waverly for publicity.
6. In “The Twenty-Six Malignant Gates this chapter relates to the introduction in multiple approaches. The preface is about a mother and daughter relationship arguing about what are the Twenty-Six Malignant Gates in addition to a reason why the daughter cannot go beyond the home’s protection. Between the prologue and the chapter of Waverly Jong they are both alike because of the conflict stirring beneath a mother and daughter relationship. These both share a murky ending of the daughter discovering herself losing from the disagreement with her mother. The daughter from the introduction falling off her bicycle portrays Waverly argument with her mother about using her for attention. Both daughters unable to comprehend their mom’s meanings of safety or advertisement. The mother of the preface daughter probably explained enough about the issue of forbidding her daughter to cross the boundaries of the

Wednesday, December 30, 2009 1:48:00 AM  
Blogger waddupdawg said...

#1:Time to Duel!
#2:Rules of the Game
#3:I felt that this chapter was confusingly weird. First, all of names they used for their moves like "Throwing Stones on the Drowning Man" and "The Sudden meeting of the Clan" were a little weird. Second, a nine year old girl becoming national champion was a little too much exaggeration. Finally, Waverly's mom was a little difficult to understand because of her broken english.
#4:Waverly is a smart little girl, becoming a champion at a young age. She is so dedicated at chess that she went directly home from school to "learn new chess secrets, cleverly concealed advantages, more escape routes"(98).
#5:The main conflict of this chapter is human vs. human. Lindo, Waverly' mom, does not understand the game of chess, tells Waverly to lose less pieces. Lindo also brags about Waverly causing Waverly to feel embarrassed and ran away.
#6:I think that the game of chess could symbolizes life. You have to develop strategies to win at chess and get through life. There are also rules you have to follow to win.
By Wai Chan
3rd period

Wednesday, December 30, 2009 3:08:00 PM  
Blogger Nhat Hoang said...

1 .“What’s Your Next Move?”
2 .“Rules of the Game”
3 .This chapter was somewhat boring, in my opinion, especially with all the narration about chess. It never appealed to me and was always confusing, so reading about all the rules and strange names for the moves didn’t catch my attention any more than it would in reality. I couldn’t understand Waverly Jong’s mother, Lindo, at times (especially since she doesn’t speak English fluently). For example, I didn’t comprehend “Wise guy, he not go against wind. In Chinese we say, Come from South, blow with wind – poom! – North will follow. Strongest wind cannot be seen” (89). I also didn’t understand why Lindo loathed Americans so much. The chapter was pretty relatable since it showed the stress parents (stereotypically “Asian” parents) have on their kids. I have more expectations from my older sister than my parents and it’s hard to relax because I’m always being nagged. So, I’m often worried about being a disappointment. The chapter also demonstrated how there are many kids with talent and the way their parents take pride in it, but usually become too pressuring. I did like the ending where Waverly imagined the chess board and disappeared into her own little world like chess was her escape from reality.
4. Waverly Jong is the protagonist in this chapter. She seems like a very curious girl, always asking questions such as, “What is Chinese torture,” (91) and endless “Why’s.” In addition, Waverly Jong is very determined to do what she wants, such as researching all the rules and moves to understand chess and perfecting the skill. She is also temperamental, especially when she gets angry at her mother for frequently showing her off and then runs away.
5. I think the conflict in this chapter is human vs. human – the conflict caused by the mother-daughter relationship between Lindo and Waverly Jong. Lindo is generally very controlling and has high expectations for her children, especially her daughter. After Waverly Jong’s chess skills become well-known, Lindo is more pressuring, making sure her daughter does well. She even tells her, “Next time win more, lose less” as a demand, not as encouragement (97). Waverly Jong becomes irritated because her mother watches just about all of her moves and often unnecessarily brags about her to others. After their argument about Waverly Jong being embarrassed of her mother, she runs off, comes home and is ignored, so she retreats to her room and thinks about chess, leaving her still under her mother’s control and the conflict unresolved.
6c. This chapter is clearly connected to the allegory at the start of the section. The introduction is about a girl demanding answers to her question from her mother. Not receiving them, she disobeys her mother, rides her bike away and ends up falling. In comparison, the chapter is about Waverly Jong and her irritation towards her mother, causing her to become upset and run away. They are both about very curious daughters asking questions and seeking answers. The daughters protest against their mothers and run away from their mothers’ advisement, protection and expectations, yearning to have freedom.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009 5:56:00 PM  
Blogger Raymond said...

1. I Lost The Game.
2. Rules of the Game
3. I actually liked this chapter although I must admit that the fact it concerned chess appealed to me greatly. The author Amy Tan adds in an enormous amount of detail as well though as well as a substantial quantity of local color. She establishes her characters (especially Waverly and her mother) not only by how they speak, but also with actions like how in almost every other scene, Waverly’s mother “[tosses] her head back” to demonstrate her haughtiness or pride. It’s refreshing to read about a character that is actually intelligent as well, especially after reading about the psychotic antics of the four year old, Ying-Ying. One of the most interesting aspects about the chapter was how Waverly often manipulated her mother such as when she convinces her mother to allow Waverly to participate in the tournament and when Waverly tells her mother about “Chinese torture”. The chapter ended rather anticlimactically however, no doubt to be resolved later on. I was impatient and skipped to the next chapter by Waverly to find out what happens.
4. Waverly Place Jong demonstrates cunning and intelligence throughout the chapter, as well as a devious mind shown when she persuades her mother to allow her into chess tournaments. She plays on her mother’s sense of “Chinese pride” so by speaking of how Waverly would “bring shame”, thus prompting her mother to make Waverly join since it would be shame to “fall if nobody push [her]”. This reveals that Waverly isn’t too concerned with using less than ethical methods for fulfilling her desires and that she understands her mother’s pride very well, if not much else about her.
5. The conflict in this chapter is human vs. human, Waverly vs. her mother, Lindo. Waverly and her mother are constantly clashing as Lindo tries to impress her Chiense heritage on Waverly and constantly flaunts Waverly to other people to assuage her Chinese pride. It’s an external conflict (as it is between two people) and the conflict is not resolved because by the end, Waverly is still irritated with her mother and the chapter itself concludes with Waverly fleeing her mother and eventually returning home for punishment. The display of conflict between Waverly and her mother strengthens and is defined at the end when Waverly plays against her opponent, two angry black slits with a triumphant smile.
6. The most obvious symbol in the chapter is the chess board/game. Chess signifies life, how it has obstacles, and in order to overcome them, one must use strategy, skill, and cunning. It also requires a certain amount of confidence in one’s actions, showing that confidence is a necessary life skill.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009 11:03:00 PM  
Blogger that'swhatmel said...

1. Pig Tailed Prodigy
2. Waverly Jong: Rules of the Game
3. I really liked the beginning of this vignette when Amy Tan described the place where Waverly Jong lived. It made me want to just go there and wander and explore because it all seemed so exciting and interesting. I was surprised when Waverly said that her family wasn’t poor and she ate three five-course meals a day; it seemed a bit much to me! As I kept reading and found out that Waverly was named after the street she lived on, it made me giggle because it seemed odd that a parent would choose a name for their child that way. I was confused when the topic of torture was brought up. Why did Waverly’s mom, Lindo, say Chinese do the “best torture (91)?” I also didn’t know why Waverly’s family went to a Christian Church when that doesn’t seem like it would be a native religion in China. The thought of a Chinese Santa made me laugh because it showed an American tradition clashing with a different ethnic group. Throughout this vignette, I was impressed with Waverly’s devotion to the game of chess and her willingness to spend her free time learning every strategy and every tactic to become a successful chess player, because I know when I was her age, I didn’t want to sit still for anything. And I was shocked when she asked Lau Po, a complete stranger, for advice about the game and I found the names of the tactics very interesting. It amazed me that Waverly was sponsored before the age of nine and that she got her picture in Life magazine! But I found the comment Bobby Fischer made about there not ever being a woman grand master very offensive and sexist. I didn’t really like how Waverly changed from being an obedient daughter into somewhat of a diva when she became a distinguished chess player. She used that as an excuse to get out of chores, to kick her brothers out of the room they shared and to get special treatment. It was like the fame was getting the best of her. Another person this affected was Lindo, Waverly’s mother. She bragged and boasted to all of Chinatown about her successful chess champion without even taking in consideration to how Waverly would feel. I can relate to this because my dad does this to me all the time in front of his friends and our relatives. I don’t completely understand why my father and Lindo did this though, maybe to gain some sort of reputation for themselves? All I think when he starts to ramble on about me is “Where’s the rock to hide under?” and I’m sure Waverly felt the exact same way.
4. The main character in this chapter is Waverly Jong. Her interest in chess is ignited when her brother Vincent gets a chessboard for Christmas. As he explains the rules of the game to her, she questions everything which brings her mother to insist that she find out for herself. This really sparked Waverly’s interest in the game of chess and she pursued it, learned all that she could, and eventually became a national champion. This reveals that she was a determined little girl that could do anything she put her mind and heart into. Not only was Waverly strong-minded, she also had a rebellious side which was shown when Waverly ran away from her mother.

Melani Cabanayan; Period 3

Wednesday, December 30, 2009 11:06:00 PM  
Blogger that'swhatmel said...

5. The main conflict can be described as human vs. human. Waverly Jong and her mother Lindo are constantly butting heads because Waverly is not reliant on Lindo, but Lindo is somewhat overprotective, always wanting the best for her child. For example, Waverly doesn’t ask her mother to teach her the game of chess, she simply goes to the park and finds a wise stranger, Lau Po, who knows a lot about chess to advise her and teach her different strategies. Waverly then wins the tournaments Lindo has entered her in, but Lindo remains unsatisfied, always telling Waverly to “lose less pieces.” Waverly becomes frustrated because her mother doesn’t understand her different strategies of the game. When in town, Lindo brags about Waverly to the people there causing Waverly to feel embarrassed and run away. As Waverly walks into the house, Lindo casually says, “We not concerning this girl. This girl not have concerning for us (100).” The conflict remains unresolved.
6. b. One symbol in this vignette is the chessboard. I believe it symbolizes life. In this chapter, we learn the rules of the game as well as the rules of life and the penalties of making a wrong move or making a bad decision. Waverly comes up with a strategy, hoping to know the end result of the match before it even begins just like people strategize based on past experiences and they think they should act.

Melani Cabanayan, Period 3

Wednesday, December 30, 2009 11:06:00 PM  
Blogger Michelle said...

“Rules of the Game”

1. I liked the chapter because I found it extremely relatable. The descriptions of Chinatown and Chinese customs were quite familiar and as I read them, a felt an odd sense of familiarity, something akin to coming home. I found myself going “hey! I remember that!” or “Hey! I know that that is!” over and over again, something that amused me to no end. I feel like this vignette portrayed a more extreme side of Chinese culture in terms of the relationship between children and their elders, but one that is equally present. This chapter depicts Waverly’s mother as being extremely overbearing and arrogant, but I think that in the mind of Lindo Jong, she is doing nothing wrong. In the culture she is accustomed to, it is not only common for parents to slyly brag about their children, but it is almost expected. So that is exactly what she does, much to the annoyance of her daughter. But Waverly almost matched her mother in her arrogance. On the outside, Waverly was every bit the modest, quiet Chinese girl, but on the inside she was full of undisguised pride and a huge ego. I thought it was hypocrital of Waverly to tell off her mom for showing off when Waverly herself mimicked her mother’s cockiness.

2. On page 98, Waverly stated that her “parents made many concessions to allow [her] to practice”, among which were kicking her brothers out of her bedroom so she could have a room all to herself, being freed from her chores and not finishing her meals. Waverly’s actions show that despite her claims that her mother was too prideful and embarrassing, Waverly was not exactly the queen of modesty herself. Waverly was nothing but a spoiled, contemptuous brat who took a little too much pride in her chess abilities. She essentially took advantage of her talent and exploited it to make her own life better. What’s worse is that her parents let her! I almost think that her mother lightened to Waverly and gave her special treatment just so she could have something to brag about to her friends. Waverly’s brattiness cannot be blamed entirely upon her, but it is undeniable that Waverly isn’t a sugary sweet, docile girl either.

3. The conflict in this chapter is external, and it is the conflict of man vs. man between Waverly and her mother’s arrogant pride. Throughout the vignette, Waverly’s mom and Waverly are in constant conflict as they attempt to strike a balance between Waverly’s natural chess abilities and her mother’s desire to show off those talents – and Waverly’s complete opposition to being shown of like the trophies she won at the chess tournaments. At the end for this chapter, this conflict is not resolved. Instead it reaches a climax when Waverly finds herself alone in her room, stuck at an impasse with her mother over this matter.
4. The allegory at the beginning of this chapter talks about a girl who disobeys her mother’s instructions to not ride her bicycle by herself around the corner. The mother claims that the girl will fall and injure herself, but the girl doesn’t listen to her mother and goes anyways. She falls, proving her mother right. This chapter relates to the allegory because time and time again, Waverly’s mother’s wisdom proves to be correct. When her mother tells her that she must “bite back [her] tongue” because the “strongest wind cannot be seen”, Waverly applies that advice to her life and sure enough, it works (89). By “attacking” quietly, stealthily, and nonverbally, she wins a bag of salted plums and many chess championships.
Happy New Year’s Eve everyone!!
- Michelle =]

Thursday, December 31, 2009 11:06:00 AM  
Blogger BrynIsBttrThnDonAtGttinDwn said...

1. “Pawn-ography”
2. “Rules of the Game”
3. This chapter was entertaining and interesting. I enjoyed that Waverly progressed into a chess playing champion while starting as a naïve little girl who asked too many questions. I always liked those types of stories where a mediocre person is taken under the wing of some sort of master who is exceptionally skilled in a specific task. After much training, the student then exceeds the master. This is what happened with Waverly and Lau Po. I also liked how Waverly knew that the bigger gifts are not always better. She has more insight and knowledge than most children her age. I think that this probably helped her as a chess player.
4. Waverly’s mother tends to brag about Waverly’s skill and wins as a chess player and gives her special treatment. However, she does not understand the game entirely. In a scene, she scolds Waverly for losing too many pieces but Waverly simply and logically says, “Sometimes you need to lose pieces to get ahead” (Pg. 97).
5. I think that the main conflict in the vignette is between Waverly and her mother. Lindo is always bragging about Waverly and giving her special treatment because of it. Throughout the vignette, Waverly is constantly irritated by Lindo’s standing over her during her practice sessions and boasting about her to others. Waverly faces huge pressure by her mom and prefers without it. This causes Waverly to run away and eventually come home to a “We are not concerning this girl” (pg. 100).
6a. I think the theme in this story is to follow the rules, whether this be rules of a game or a household. Waverly breaks the rules with her mother, the rules of respecting daughter and mother, breaking away from her and causing Lindo to scorn Waverly at the end of the chapter.

Bryan Bui

Thursday, December 31, 2009 11:35:00 AM  
Blogger phunkmasterJobyJo said...

Black or White

“Rules of the Game”

Ohmygoodness what a typical Chinese family! The parents constantly talk about their children, while at the same time being overbearing, nagging, and over-protective! My my I wonder whose parents they remind me of. :O Well sarcasm aside, there was a scene that struck me as funny. Who would want to take a picture of roast duck...? And gosh, Waverly Jong got quite a swelled head after being a 'prodigy' at chess. She gets special treatment over her brothers, such as her own room and exemption from chores. And her mother is now bragging about her, which annoys her. And after winning that first tournament, chess is all Waverly thinks about nowadays. Obsession much? But this game, chess, is now the cause of friction. By the way, how does this section relate to the twenty-six malignant gates?? And I JUST noticed this but I did not read anything at all about the husband and father of the Jong family...

4 Well yes, the main character of that vignette is Waverly Jong. I think that in the beginning she is just a sweet little girl who plays on the streets of Chinatown, but after learning chess, she becomes arrogant and snooty. In addition her mother, who was simply overprotective now becomes enamored in her daughter's success and sees that as her own. (Like how parents, who often didn't get to achieve or do things in life, make their kids do them => over-competitive soccer moms) And yes before chess she was quiet, but later she comes to grow a sharp tongue.

5 I think the conflict is an external man vs man, with Waverly Jong and her mother Lindo doing the conflicting. As said above, Waverly becomes.. stuck up and spoiled with her chess prowess, while Lindo allows her to be that way as she can brag about her daughter and share in her glory. But this happy win-win situation could not last forever, as one of the two was bound to want more than her part: Waverly, who snaps at her mother as to why she must constantly remind everyone around her that she is her daughter.

6b Some objects I remember from the chapter are: Waverly's Christmas package of Lifesavers, the alley of Waverly Place, and her own hand-drawn chessboard on a piece of paper. Going back to this theme of “Heritage”, the alley of Waverly Place, where she got her namesake , was also where she learned new chess skills from Lau Po. And as her chess success grew, she stopped going to Wavery Place. So maybe the alleyway was the roots of her heritage, which she abandoned as she found a haven, chess, while forgetting about all else? Her drawing of a chessboard was tacked on the walls of her own room, mentioned in the later half of the chapter. I just think it symbolizes her success, and chess in general? As she stares at it, she gets lost in her strategies and moves of the game, so again it could also be her sanctum. Lastly, the Lifesavers. In the beginning she savored those candies, but after learning chess, she used the Very Cherry and Peppy Peppermint flavors to substitute two pieces for her brothers' chessboard. As she played more and more, naturally her stock of Lifesavers vanished. So as a result of her chess-playing, the 'Life' savers represent the depletion, or forgetting of her family and surroundings, for chess.
~El Schelonai AKA Nicholas Lee, Period the 4th

Thursday, December 31, 2009 1:23:00 PM  
Blogger Nico said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

Thursday, December 31, 2009 1:36:00 PM  
Blogger Nico said...

1. The Next Move
2. "Rules of the Game"
3. I enjoyed reading this chapter because I like to play chess. I thought that this chapter can relate to us today because getting to eat both candies by winning the chess game seems like something people might still do today. Something I didn't understand was why the author used the phrase "dog-eared" to describe a instruction booklet.
4. Waverly, being a child chess prodigy got a lot of attention. When she screams at her mother for bragging about her too much, it reveals that she is someone who doesn't always like to be at the center of attention.
5. The main conflict is between Waverly and her mother. Waverly doesn't appreciate her mother taking advantage of her as her mother takes her to the market every time to show off. Waverly screams at her mother and their quarrel is not resolved. This conflict is human vs. human.
6. The theme of this story is to follow all the rules, especially those set by your parents.

Thursday, December 31, 2009 1:39:00 PM  
Blogger jessicaisabookworm said...

Jessica Lee
Period 4
1. “Strongest wind cannot be seen”
2. Rules of the Game
3. I think that Waverly is very observant and it shows during the Christmas party, when she’s choosing a gift. She paid attention to the gifts other children got, the way they chose their gifts, and she tried to find a trick that would promise her a good gift. I think that was the same way Waverly felt about chess, there were loads of secrets and certain tricks to guarantee a win. She paid attention to her brothers’ and Lau Po’s tactics and most importantly her own mistakes. And I guess at first Waverly played just for fun and then she thought that if she played in tournaments then she’d uncover more tricks and tactics. I think that when Lindo started to boast about Waverly’s success and pressure her to keep winning, Waverly felt that chess tournaments weren’t as fun with all the stress.
4. I think that Lindo uses Waverly’s success to make up for the shame she brought to her family. In The Red Candle, Lindo’s parent’s pressured her to not bring shame upon their family, so Lindo had to go through with the arranged marriage. I think Lindo might have felt guilty for sneaking her way out of her first marriage, even though it technically wasn’t shameful. But by having such a successful daughter, Lindo thinks that Waverly brings so much honor to their family, it makes up for the shame Lindo brought. And to maintain the honor Waverly brought she had to keep winning tournaments, which was probably why Lindo put so much pressure on Waverly.
5. I think the conflict is human vs. human, Waverly vs. Lindo. Waverly definitely feels her mother it’s the opponent she can’t beat, Waverly feels as though she can’t live up to her mother’s expectations. Even though Waverly is a chess prodigy, to Lindo she still isn’t perfect so she pushes Waverly to be better than best.
6.c) I think this chapter connects with the allegory in the begging because Waverly runs away from her mother just like the girl in the allegory. Both disobeyed their mothers and suffered the consequences that their mothers warned them about. Waverly ran away from her mother but in the end came back. The girl in the allegory thought that whatever her mother said wasn’t true because her mother couldn’t prove it to her. And when her mother said the girl would fall, the girl wouldn’t believe and set out on her bike anyway, only to fall just as her mother told her.

Thursday, December 31, 2009 1:50:00 PM  
Blogger K said...

Kathy Nguyen Per 4

1. "Play by the rules fool!"

2. "Rules of the Game"

3. This chapter was alright, but I was confused at some things. The scene after Waverly and her family come home from church with their presents, her mother said, "'She not want it. We not want it,' she said, tossing her head stiffly to the side with a right, proud smile" (93). Who was "she" that Waverly's mother said? Was it the old lady who said, "'Merry, merry Christmas'" (93)? Though the old lady nodded, so I take that as an approving gesture. Amy Tan's did vivid description of where Waverly lived, especially the "Ping Yuen Fish Market" (90).

4. Waverly Jong to me is modest, though inconsiderate, and uses her title of Chess Champion for an advantage. The scene where she complained about "the bedroom [she] shared was so noisy ... [her] brothers slept in a bed in the living room" (99). Also, when she said she could not think when her stomach was full, she was able to leave half-finished bowls of rice. Yet, she could not make excuses when it came to going to the market on Sundays with her mother. Waverly tried to kindly tell her mother to stop bragging that Waverly was her daughter to everyone who walked by like Waverly was a trophy. Since probably everyone would have known her by then, hearing her accomplishments in the chess tournaments. Waverly could have continued to ignore it, and try to understand that her parents, when they were in China did not accomplish something that could be recognized by their town, city or country.

5. The main conflict would be an internal conflict, human vs. self. Waverly has her own way with her reputation in the chess tournaments. Not considering the rules her mother taught her, but now following the American rules of chess. The conflict is resolved when reality struck her after her mother said, "'We not concerning this girl. This girl not have concerning for us'" (100). Thus now reflecting upon what she has done, as to in her mind, the next move she shall make.

6d. This chapter is related to the allegory in the beginning of the section. The mother in the allegory tells her daughter to not ride her bicycle aroundthe corner or else her mother will not see her and she will fall. The daughter, not able to see any proof from The Twenty-Six Malignant Gates, disobeys her mother and goes off riding her bicycle. Unfortunately, the daughter falls before even reaching the corner. Waverly's mother, tells Waverly about the art of invisible strength, how it can "win arguements, respect from others," and "chess games". "'Wise guy, he not go against wind. In Chinese we say, Come from South, blow with wind--poom!--North will follow. Strongest wing cannot be seen'" (89). Waverly first follows these rules, obeying her mother. But after her success in chess tournaments, she put those rules aside and followed the American rules, and concentrated mostly on her victories. Soon, her ignorance of what her mother once told her comes back to Waverly. After telling her mother off for the bragging she had to keep up with, running away, but returning home to see her family now turning their backs on Waverly, for she had no "concerning for [them]" (100).

Thursday, December 31, 2009 3:11:00 PM  
Blogger Julianroy said...

By Julian Roy

2. Rules of the Game

3. This chapter was an interesting and fun to read. I got sucked in by the story but began to dislike Waverly because the fame eventually got to her head. Waverly's mother was also an intersting character as well. She seems really annoying because when Waverly started becoming a chess pro, her mother did nothing but watch over her like a hawk. I guess she wanted to make sure Waverly would become a grand master at chess because it also seems that the only thing her Mom talks about outside of the house is about how Waverly is pro at chess.

4. Waverly's mother, Lindo Jong, is a mother who enjoys bragging about her daughter. This seems to be the case because at home, Lindo Jong watches Waverly study Chess tactics everyday. This could be because she wants to ensure Waverly becomes superior at chess, giving Lindo Jong more reason to gloat about her daughter. And, Lindo Jong enjoys telling every single person she see's that her daughter is a chess champion because this is all she does whenever they go shopping at the market.

5. I think that the main conflict is human v. human. It is between Waverly and her mother Lindo Jong. Waverly tries to understand why her mother is so prideful of her and why she is always intruding in her space when she tries to learn chess tactics at home. When Waverly confronts her mother with these questions, her mom doesn't respond and later tells her that she doesn't want to concern herself with Waverly because Waverly doesn't want to concern herself with Lindo Jong.

6a. I think the theme is to always follow the rules because when Waverly follows the rules for the whole chapter without any conflict and when she finally confronts her mother as to why she is so prideful, all hell breaks loose and a rift between mother and daughter forms

Thursday, December 31, 2009 5:01:00 PM  
Blogger Rebecca said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

Thursday, December 31, 2009 6:34:00 PM  
Blogger FREAKOFNATURE said...

2. Rules of the Game
3. As I read more into the chapter, I started disliking Waverly because while she got her own bedroom from winning the chess game, her brothers had to share the livingroom. It reminded me of a movie where the bad guy his own bedroom while the good people had to share. When she won the chess tournament, her mother, Lindo, favored her more than her brothers. This reminded me how, still today, many parents favor the "smarter" or "more hardworking" child over the "stupider" others. I was struck on how Waverly spent more time with chess than her family and caused me to HIGHLY DISLIKE her.
4. Waverly is a very curious little girl. She went to study each chess piece to try to get every power from it. After trying to get answers from her brothers and her mother about chess, she learns to go figure them out herself. She also plays with the old men and learn many skills of playing chess that I will never learn.
5. I think the main conflict in this chapter human vs. human between Waverly and her mom. Waverly was mad at her mom because her mom made it seem like Waverly's success was due to her teachings when Waverly found her skills herself. Waverly was also disappointed that her mother told her to sacrafice some pieces and continue her strategie while Waverly doesn't want her pieces to be eaten. Therefore, she despises her mother.
6. I think the theme of this chapter is to not run away from your problems because running away will not solve anything. Here, Waverly runs away from her mom. but in the end, nothing was solved. We need to learn to face these problems face on and finish them off!
~~becca!(3rd period) ^^Y

Thursday, December 31, 2009 6:48:00 PM  
Blogger (゚Д゚ ") said...

1.) chess hero

2.) "Rules of the Game"

3.) This chapter was pretty easy to understand, yet also interesting enough to captivate my attention at the same time. Waverly's prodigy like abilities gave her special treatment above others, and that made me wonder if geniuses these days get treated for better, or worse. Even though she was already a master at chess, meeting greater players that taught her more proved that no matter how successful or good one is at something, there's always room for improvement. Overall, a pretty good chapter, but I'm sure there's a more alluring chapter in this book somewhere.

4.) Waverly's mother, Lindo seems to be a very stereotypical Asian parent. She's rude, boastful about her children, and is an extremely realistic person. For instance when she talks with Waverly towards the end, she keeps pressuring her into submission until she's felt like she's "won" the conversation.

5.) The main conflict here is clearly human vs human, as Waverly is in a struggle with her mother's expectations and must not only succeed them, yet approve and appeal to them as well. When Waverly spills a drop of her true feelings, she tells Lindo "I wish you wouldn't do that, telling everybody I'm your daughter" (99) her mother responds only with insulting and rudeness, putting her under immense pressure and self consciousness.

6.) Amy Tan's word choice in their dialogue really stands out here, as I've yet to seen it in any work of literature. The scrambled English painted a picture, which I could also convert into imagery and that's what kept me turning the pages.

- Khanh

Thursday, December 31, 2009 7:00:00 PM  
Blogger 巾幗梟雄茂甩程秤Benjamin秤程甩茂雄梟幗巾 said...

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Thursday, December 31, 2009 8:17:00 PM  
Blogger Brian said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

Thursday, December 31, 2009 8:23:00 PM  
Blogger SHARK WEEK said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

Thursday, December 31, 2009 8:33:00 PM  
Blogger SHARK WEEK said...

1. "Trophy Daughter"
2. "Rules of the Game"
3. I didn't particularly like this chapter as much as the one prior, but I still found it to be quite enjoyable. I think that this chapter is one that other readers are going to relate to more so than other chapters, what with Lindo's humility and her contrasting bragging. I liked Tan related both mother and daughter's story with the "secret strength"; that is, both of them had wits and a keen eye, though obviously used for different reasons. I also found the how much Lindo prized her daughter's chess playing ability.
4. Lindo was a very proud person and she was very serious about it. She was very proud of her daughter and her chess playing skills to the point where she decided to brag about it to everyone. Any slight against her pride, likewise, is taken very seriously, such as when Waverly talked back to her and she responded later by telling her that she did not care about her family and neither did they.
5. The conflict is human vs. human, Waverly vs. Lindo. Lindo is constantly interfering and hovering over Waverly and her chess playing and Waverly feels as though her mother is invading her space. The conflict is not resolved as it ends as a cliffhanger of sorts with Waverly deciding what to do.
6.C. This chapter is related to the allegory in that Waverly and the bicycle girl seek an independence of sorts from their mothers, whom they both find to be overbearing.

-Nolan Tran

Thursday, December 31, 2009 8:34:00 PM  
Blogger tagxtaylor said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

Thursday, December 31, 2009 8:44:00 PM  
Blogger Taylor said...

1. The Next Move
2. “Rules of the Game”
3. I thought this chapter was very interesting and insightful because it shows how these Chinese families typically operated in this new American land they came to. Waverly Jong’s mother doesn’t seem very caring. She never praises her or gives her a break. Her mother just wants the best for Waverly so she pushes her to be the best. Pride is a very important thing in their culture. Her mother wants to throw away the used chest set because “She not want it. We not want it (93)”. I think pride is important but in my opinion her mother takes it too far. She expects Waverly to win every single chess match. Why is it so important for Waverly to win every single match? Her mother seems strict but allows Waverly to make all kinds of excuses now that she is winning chess matches. I don’t understand why rules seem to no longer apply to her because of this. I also don’t understand what is happening in the end with the chest game. I think her mother finally pushes Waverly over the edge but what does she mean when she talks about how she rises above everything and is now alone?
4. Waverly Jong’s mother wants to show her off to everyone and make sure everyone knows Waverly is her daughter. This shows that her mother is very proud of her daughter even if she doesn’t show it to her. I think her mother is trying to live her dreams through her daughter. All she wants is her daughter to have great success and be the best of the best and that’s why she pushes her so hard.
5. The conflict in this chapter is between Waverly and her mother. Her mother is constantly pushing her and I think Waverly just wants a break. I don’t think it really gets resolved between them. Her mother finally pushes Waverly over the edge and Waverly decides she is just going to rise above all of it.
6. I think the theme in this chapter is that sometimes true intentions cannot be seen. Throughout the story Waverly’s mother always said “Strongest wind cannot be seen”. Her mother has a big influence over Waverly and is constantly pushing her. Her mother does it because she wants the best for Waverly. That is her strongest intention and emotion but Waverly does not see it that way.

-Taylor Gralak

Thursday, December 31, 2009 8:53:00 PM  
Blogger Toothpick said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

Thursday, December 31, 2009 9:02:00 PM  
Blogger Toothpick said...

1. Stalemate
2. Rules of the Game
3. I thought this chapter was very interesting. It was a good break from the crazy stories of other families in past chapters too. Some things were a bit hard to understand though, like when Waverly's mother talks about Chinese proverbs in broken English.On the other hand, I thought it was pretty amazing that a small kid at the age of 9 could be that good at chess. Also, I liked the character of Waverly in the beginning, but started disliking her as she began to grow kind of arrogant by letting her success get to her head. As for her mother, I didnt like her much at all.
4. When Waverly complains about her room saying it is too noisy for her to concentrate, even though her brothers have to live in the living room, it reveals that her recent success has made her smug and feeling like shes better than others.
5. The main conflict is human vs human because Waverly and her mother just can not get along. Lindo brags about her daughter to an excess and continues to demand more and more even though Waverly accomplishes alot already.
6. At the end of the chapter it says, "I closed my eyes and pondered my next move". This symbolizes a mental chess battle against her mother.

-Vincent Nguyen, 3rd period

Thursday, December 31, 2009 9:03:00 PM  
Blogger Diana said...

1. Young and Powerful

2."Rules of the Game"

3. This chapter really pissed me off. The mom taught her lessons that she should never ask for anything, and she would get it in time. However, the mom asked for Waverly to lose less pieces and to keep winning so she wouldn't bring shame the family. This contradicted everything that the mom taught her entire family, and the rules that she lived by. I don’t understand in the end why the mom attacked her with a strong wind, or why Waverly felt light and floated up as if she died and was going to heaven.

4. Waverly’s mother is a very prideful person believing what’s best for her family. She thinks that she is the absolute ruler in her family, and that everyone should listen to her. The mother values Waverly more because she can offer more to the family, and makes Vincent, and Watson do the chores since they can’t offer as much.

5. The main conflict is human vs human when Waverly’s mother doesn’t give Waverly any space. She keeps watching over her giving her advice that doesn’t want. When she asks her to go away, her mom just causes more disturbances. When she asks her mom to stop showing her off like a trophy, her mom yells at her. The problem in the end isn’t really solved, but her mom decides to punish her instead.

6.The theme of this short story is not to ask for too much. For example, the mom asks Waverly to lose more pieces and to win more. This results in some pressuring from her mom. Don’t ask for too much because in the end you might not be able to fulfill it and disappoint everyone.

- Diana Li

Thursday, December 31, 2009 9:43:00 PM  
Blogger 巾幗梟雄茂甩程秤Benjamin秤程甩茂雄梟幗巾 said...

1. One Chance

2. Rules of the Game

3. I thought the chapter went by pretty fast. I felt that some of the characters only had one goal, like Waverly’s mother. All she wanted to do was to be able to brag. Through the chapter, it seems like all that matters is to be the best. Through the chapter, I wondered why Waverly was very into the game of chess and how she was able to focus all her attention to it. I also wondered why Waverly’s mother becomes very angry that Waverly doesn’t her mother bragging.

4. Waverly’s mother seems to like to brag. She seems to think that only winning is important and loosing if ignored. It tells the readers that she wants to be the best and also that Waverly’s mother doesn’t know that to learn, you must fail first. Waverly’s mother also seems to live her dreams through Waverly because whenever Waverly wins, she has to brag about it as if she was the champion.

5. The main conflict is Waverly trying to improve in chess while she pushes everything else away. She stops doing things she normally does so that she can practice chess. This shows that the conflict is Human vs. Self. The conflict is internal because it is a shift of devotion from Waverly’s old hobbies to her new hobby of chess.

6. A life lesson the chapter teaches is that you can escape a trap or always win in a game, but in reality, it is a lot harder to escape and you do not always win. In a game, you can retry and rethink your strategies, but in life, you have one chance.

Benjamin LY

Thursday, December 31, 2009 9:47:00 PM  
Blogger Cucco Magic? said...

1.Real Skills
2.Rules of the Game
3.This chapter was kind of one sided. It was mainly just here getting high rank and her mother bragging about her. Chess was like the main thing in the chapter but, there was no truly epic battle within the story or details of the chess matches, just Waverly won the tournaments. I think it was kind of disappointing there was no “omg I almost lost” or “I was almost late to the tournament” things happening and the brothers were kind of not there anymore, even though they showed her the game.
4. Waverly is some what modest I think. She told her mom to stop bragging about her. Most champions would enjoy being known. She is easily Irritated, When her mom was saying keep as much pieces as you can, and she got mad, She cant be full or she cant concentrate and when she was in her room and it was noisy from her brothers.
5. Human vs. Human. Waverly vs. Lindo. Lindo first didn’t want Waverly to join a tournament and play with strangers. Waverly plays, finds she’s good at it and becomes really good. Then Lindo says to lose less and keep as much pieces as you can, which made Waverly mad. Lindo starts to brag about Waverly being good in chess which also makes Waverly mad.
6–B The chess board on her wall is a symbol of skill, as she thought of imagery matches to get better in chess.

This The Original Cucco Magic but With a different Account and a ?

Thursday, December 31, 2009 9:49:00 PM  
Blogger brandon said...

jackie chen period 3

1) Checkmate
2) Rules of the Game
3) I think this chapter was interesting. It was very easy to read and I could understand most of the writing. I think a lot of people could relate to this story because they know how it feels to be pressured by their parents. Amy Tan used descriptive language and I could picture the places and characters. I thought it was weird that Waverly would approach a strange old man to play chess with. One question I have about this chapter is what does the “strongest wind” stuff mean?
4) The main character Waverly Jong is shown to be independent but also somewhat of a brat. For example, she uses her chess accomplishments as an excuse to not do chores and to have a room to herself. Waverly is also annoyed of her mother, who constantly boasts about her and embarrasses her. When her mother tries to tell Waverly what to do, she gets annoyed and tells her to go away. This shows how at an early age, Waverly is already trying to do things for herself without the help of her mother.
5) The main conflict of this chapter is human vs. human. It is between Waverly and her mother. Waverly thinks her mother is always bragging about her daughter and showing her off. This annoys and angers Waverly because it is embarrassing to her. However, Waverly’s mother is just trying to show her daughter support and show pride in her. However, she does go overboard and can be seen as annoying. In the end, the conflict remains unsolved. Waverly runs away from her mother and when she returns home, her mother disowns her.
6) A symbol in this story is the chessboard. It kind of symbolizes life and how you have to plan it and make your own moves.

Thursday, December 31, 2009 10:39:00 PM  
Blogger Randy said...

1) Chess Moms.
2) “Rules of the Game”.
3) I thought that this chapter was the coolest so far. It relates to lots of kids today. Parents often ride on their kids’ coattails, usually without meaning to. I liked how Tam made both Waverly and Lindo both witty. I liked Waverly throughout the whole story. She seems like a typical child, eager to win and wanting to have fun. I don’t like Lindo at all. She doesn’t even seem to know what the heck she’s talking about when it comes to chess. I don’t like Lindo either because she is using her own child’s reputation for her own good, something I’m very much against. I never really understood the end of this chapter.
4) Lindo is really witty and smart. At the end of the chapter, we can already see her power over her daughter when she says “We not concerning with this girl.” It sort of shows us how far she can go, even to sort of disowning or forgetting her own daughter. This statement hurts Waverly so much that she admits losing to Lindo in a mental chess game. Lindo also has a lot of pride. She uses her daughter’s reputation to increase her own. When Waverly talks back at Lindo, Lindo gets pissed, and she sort of disowns her own daughter to maintain her pride of not being “controlled” by her daughter.
5) The conflict is human vs. human, Waverly vs. her mother. The conflict is basically this: Lindo embarrasses Waverly by telling everyone that Waverly is Lindo’s daughter and that Waverly is really good at chess. Waverly wants Lindo to stop. This conflict doesn’t really get resolved because it ends with Waverly seeing Lindo beating her in chess and Waverly flying above the chess battle because she is carried away by the “strongest wind”.
6) B. The symbol in this chapter is the chess game at the end. It symbolizes the constant battle between Lindo and Waverly. Possibly the battle between Lindo trying to instill Chinese culture into Waverly and Waverly trying to reject it.

Thursday, December 31, 2009 11:31:00 PM  
Blogger Maobertooo said...

Stalemate or Checkmate?

Rules of the Game

1. I thought that the opening to the chapter focused too much on the details of Waverly’s neighborhood as she was growing up. I felt that the story stagnated, since the title “Rules of the Game” made me wonder whether she was involved in some type of sport. Indeed, I found out that Waverly was a childhood prodigy at chess, and her little miracle story about how she came to love the game was truly inspiring. Since I was an avid chess player in elementary and middle school, I could relate to the predicaments that Waverly faced while playing more experienced players, and also the pressures of tournament play. The names of some of the openings and end-games, such as the Double Attack from the East and West Shores, seemed too Oriental to be applied to conventional chess tactics. Rather, these names of tricky strategies reminded me the names of similar tactics I once read in a manual introducing the Asian game of Go, or wei-chi, to English speakers.

2. The protagonist of this chapter is Waverly Jong, who describes her childhood as being very “typical” of Chinese-American girls. Waverly laments that her mother would teach her the “art of invisible strength,” which implied strength and superiority through silent, and often surreptitious, means (89). This ability both greatly helped and frustrated Waverly in her childhood. When used in her chess games, this invisible strength allowed Waverly to triumph opponent after opponent, adequately confounding them into her unseen traps. Yet when Waverly faced her mother, who was even more adept at using this unseen power, Waverly found herself to be hopeless and self-deprecating.

3. The conflicts in this chapter can be described as both internal and external, one that is human vs. self and one that is human vs. human. Waverly struggles to find her self-identity as she feels that her overbearing mother basks in her daughter’s chess triumphs. Waverly describes how her mother used her “to show off,” indicating both her disgust and exasperation at her mother’s actions (99). This also ties into her external conflict with her mother. After Waverly runs off while accompanying her mother shopping, she finds that her mother’s attitude towards her has completely changed. Her mother specifically says that she “will not consider [Waverly] because [Waverly] does not concern [her family]” (100). Waverly ends this chapter by stating how she felt that her opponent, two angry black slits, was really her demanding and temperamental mother, and Waverly yearns to break free from her mother’s firm grip on her life.

4. One symbol shown in this chapter is the chessboard. It symbolizes the growing conflict between Waverly and her mother. As Waverly’s competence on the chessboard grows, her frustration towards her mother also grows. In a sense, Waverly’s own vanity and ego grows as she becomes a better chess player. Countering this growth of “self-confidence” is Waverly’s mother’s growing expectations towards her daughter. Eventually, these two sides meet and come into sharp discord with one another as Waverly is unable to appease her mother because of her own disgust towards her mother. Another symbol in this chapter is the Life Savers that represent Waverly’s childhood “innocence” on the chessboard. When she begins to play, these candies serve as substitutes for missing chess pieces, but can be interpreted as “life-saving” for Waverly as she carefully learns the art of chess through her loss of the candies to her opponents. After she stops playing with the old chess set and its Life-Saver pieces, Waverly matures into a different type of player, and also a different type of person in the way that she views her family, peers, and chess opponents. Like a diabetic person who throws away his medicine or a drowning sailor who throws his life saver away, Waverly loses her childhood humility when she stops playing with the old chess set with its Life Saver pieces.

-Albert Li

Thursday, December 31, 2009 11:41:00 PM  
Blogger DaoTheMackDaddy said...

1. "Your Move"
2. Rules of the Game
3. I liked the character Waverly for making an effort to learn the game of Chess. But I didn't like how Waverly got detached from her family as she learned how to play. I felt like I had a connection with the character until I read that part. But then I read the part where Lindo took all the glory when she was telling everyone her daughter was good at Chess, and I could kind of relate to that too.
4. I didn't really like the relationship that was going on between Waverly and her mother. They two don't really agree with each other and I can kind of relate to that too. Waverly is kind of Americanized and doesn't really want to be and is embarassed by her mother. And her mother Lindo is very asian when she shows Waverly off to everyone.
5. I think that the Main Conflict in the chapter is an Internal Conflict and is Human vs. Self. Waverly doesn't seem like she is very proud of her Chinese heritage. And proves it by how she plays Chess.
6. I think the message or theme that Amy Tan is trying to leave is to be proud of your roots, and to not be shy to show them.

Thursday, December 31, 2009 11:48:00 PM  
Blogger Platinum said...

1. My Rules
2. "Rules of the Game"
3. I thought this chapter was sort of typical. Even today, many Asian parents want their children to aspire to be the best they can be; whether or not they want to do that is another matter. Although Waverly was very good at chess and won many awards, I don't think she deserved to be treated specially in the way that she did. If I was her brother I would hate that I had to do all the chores while she didn't, and only because she can play a simple board game.

4. One particular character that I would like to focus on would be Waverly. Her winning all of her chess games, I think, gave her, so to speak, a large ego. She began to think that she was better than she really was. It really shows her vulnerability to certain events. Also, it shows how eager she was to gain attention, to gain fame in front of her family.
5. The main conflict in this chapter was of the type human vs. human. The conflict was mainly between Waverly and her mother. Her mother wanted her to succeed and be proud of the fact that she was a chess champion. So, she kept pushing Waverly. We know this because we can see direct examples of friction between them, directly so in the form of the argument that they have at the end of the chapter.
6. I think that the theme or life lesson of this chapter is to do what you love. If one spends his/her whole life doing something that he/she has no desire or ambition to do, he/she will never be happy. So, one must explore many areas and interests to find what thing that they love doing. After doing so, they must pursue this ambition, this zeal, to the furthest.

Thursday, December 31, 2009 11:52:00 PM  
Blogger Brian said...

1. “Checkmate”

2. “Rules of the Game”

3. When I read this chapter, I thought that Lindo Jong took too pride in her daughter, using her to give herself a better image. She boasts about her daughter’s skill in chess, resulting in Waverly being embarrassed. Personally, I didn’t expect for this to happen because typically speaking, Chinese people tend to be humble and don’t brag nearly as much as Lindo did. Even stranger is that Lindo mentions proper Chinese humility. I thought the part with Bobby Fischer, who was also deemed as a chess prodigy at a young age, was interesting. Bobby Fischer said that there would never be a female grandmaster. This made me wonder if Waverly would continue playing chess until she achieved the rank of a grandmaster. I also thought Waverly was too full of herself after learning how to play chess. It got to the point where she got into a fight her mother.

4. Waverly is a girl with a passion for chess. At a young age, she’s already determined to learn how the game works and all of its aspects. When Waverly learns more from playing with Lau Po and reading books on chess, she wins numerous tournaments with an undefeated streak. Up until this point, Waverly is neglected by Lindo, who never seemed to pay much attention to her. Lindo uses Waverly to show off to everyone she comes across. Waverly is tired of being used as an accessory to her mother. She finally loses it and talks back to her mother and runs away. The argument Waverly has with her mother shows another side of her that the reader has not seen before.

5. I think the conflict is human vs. human, between Waverly and Lindo Jong. Waverly is pressured by the high standards Lindo sets for her. Seeing as how Waverly is so young, Lindo is expecting too much out of her. To add on to this, Lindo also doesn’t understand the dynamics of chess which irritates Waverly. It doesn’t make sense for someone to talk about stuff they don’t understand. Lindo takes pride in Waverly’s accomplishments but overdoes it when she announces them for publicity. Waverly is shown to be a calm person until she rebels against Lindo.

6. This chapter can be easily compared with the allegory before it. In the allegory, a young girl is asks about the Twenty-Six Malignant Gates. When the mother does not respond, she goes against her and falls into a corner. Likewise, Waverly disobeys her mother by talking back to her and running away.

Brian Yang
Period 4

Friday, January 01, 2010 12:09:00 AM  
Blogger Gisellllle! said...

1. Chess
2. Rules of the Game
3. I thought this chapter was relatively good but it was kind of confusing to understand the mothers broken English. I think that it’s possible for others to relate to Waverly’s situation. A lot of people don’t like it when parents brag about their children but it does make them feel better about themselves in a way. Although Waverly is somewhat embarrassed, she shouldn’t be rude to her mother like when she brags about her. For example, when her mother does her hair in the morning, Waverly indirectly says something about “Chinese torture.”
4. Waverly Jong was named after the street that they lived on for important American documents. She didn’t think her family was poor because she had food and shelter. When her mother bragged about her being, she didn’t like the attention at first. But she used the attention as an advantage. At the end of the chapter she acted as though she was better than everyone because she was a chess champion.
5. The conflict is between Waverly and her mother. The conflict is human vs. human. Waverly does not like when her mother brags about her being a chess champion. To stop her, she screams at her but it does not solve the conflict.
6. I think the game of chess is a symbol. It represents Waverly’s life and the constant battle with her mother.

Friday, January 01, 2010 11:07:00 AM  
Blogger Scott_Lee said...

Brandon Lam

1. Chicken Skin
2. Rules of the Game
3. Waverly's mother is very annoying. She always talked about how Waverly was so good at chess. It was probably embarrassing for Waverly to be walking in public with her mother. Apparently I'm not a fan of chess, but I thought that the comments that her mother was making when she was playing to be very annoying. Even so, I thought that it was very rude when she "told off" her mother. Her mom might have been annoying, but she must have had feelings too. A parent hearing their own child say that they don't want to be related to them must have hurt.
4.When Waverly was only eight, she was able to figure-out that big presents didn't mean that they were good presents. This to me was fairly smart of her. This event shows how smart Waverly was, and her knowledge only grew as she got older. Her knowledge would probably be the "key" when playing chess.
5. I think that the conflict in the chapter is strictly Man vs. Man, being between Waverly and her mother. Their differing ideas is the conflict.
6. I think the theme is "play by the rules". When Waverly listened to her mother nothing happened, but when she "snapped" the entire conflict of the chapter is revealed.

Friday, January 01, 2010 7:36:00 PM  
Blogger CherryBerry said...

1. Chess Chess Chess!
2. Rules of the Game
3. The broken English said in this chapter was a little hard for me to understand, I had to re read it a couple of times to understand what the character meant. But this chapter made me realize that when people play chess it isn’t just a game, but an adventure to unlock secrets and such.
4. Waverly’s mother definitely used her daughter to show off the intelligence she had in winning all those Chess tournaments. It was kind of ridiculous if you ask me. She can be proud of her daughter’s achievements but she didn’t need to go around on Saturday mornings telling everyone Waverly was her daughter. I think that was a little too over the top.
5. I think the conflict was human vs. society because Waverly had to continually compete against people in her chess competitions, but I also think it was human vs. human at the same time because of the argument that happened at the end of the chapter with Waverly’s mother.
6. I think the Pawn represented the stat of something new, moving forward in the game and in Waverly’s talent she had in Chess.
-Jahana Kaliangara

Saturday, January 02, 2010 3:23:00 PM  
Blogger patrickw said...

1. “Play by the rules
2. Rules of the Game
3. This chapter was intresting, I liked how this mother and daughter relationship played out. It can relate to a lot of people because it was about a girl who was embarrassed by her mother. I think that many kids can relate to it because all of our parents do embarrassing things at some time. It felt weird when she kept advertising her daughter on a magazine when she doesn’t even feel that grateful when she wins.
4. The main character in this vignette Waverly Jong started out as a selfish arrogant brat, until she loses to the same guy twice , she loses all her confidence. Waverly is also mature for such a young age, she;s able to tell that big presents didn’t mean they were great.
5. The conflict in this vignette is human vs human. The conflict between Waverly and her mother. They both differ in ideas and Waverly feels embarrassed when her mother repeatedly shows her off like an object.
6. The whole theme in this chapter is playing by the rules of the game. Before Waverly stopped playing she led a decent life, but when she decided to stop. The boy she easily defeated two years ago ended up beating her. Her own mother tells her “you think it’s so easy, stop and then play?”.

Thursday, January 28, 2010 10:48:00 PM  

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