Sunday, November 29, 2009

What is the difference between the image of ACS and the reality?
The American College of Sofia is a school that has a reputation of a prison. One of the rumors is that people here are very rich and most of them are accepted because of their connections and money, but the reality is different. Most of the students that study in ACS are ones of the smartest in Bulgaria. Many students have average grades above 5, 50 which shows the quality of the students and the school. The majority of people that graduate our school later on study in elite universities, which determine their skills, and refute the rumor that in ACS kids go only because their parents are wealthy.
Children that study in other schools believe that in ACS anybody can easily be expelled. There are many facts that refute such statement. The first argument is that in other schools if you skip 10 classes or more you get automatically expelled, but in our school the system is different. After each skip you can be suspended if the dean decides so, but otherwise the limit of the absences is fifty-six. This number equals 7 full study days in any regular Bulgarian school. According to this it is harder to be expelled in ACS than in a regular school. Another fact is that for every larger brake of the rules we go to probation that expires after the end of a semester, except the honesty probation, while in other schools you receive a punishment. If you have one punishment for unexcused absences and one for discipline you can easily be expelled, while in ACS you will have two probations that are over after few months.
The third most popular rumor about ACS is that nobody can cheat there. Probably the teachers are on the same opinion, but the reality created by the students is different. There are so many ways for cheating that are developed by students in our schools that teachers can not even imagine. The American College in Sofia has the reputation of one of the best prisons in Bulgaria, but the reality is different because its quality and the knowledge of the students are deteriorating through the years, which seems sad, but true.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Book Review: 1984 by Geogre Orwell

The novel 1984 was written by George Orwell in 1949. During his life the author has witnessed the disastrous effect of the totalitarian regimes reigning with unlimited power. The novel represents a society in the near future that is controlled by a totalitarian government. The story takes place in London, but the country’s name is changed to Oceania. Orwell represents his biggest fear- people that are manipulated and brainwashed in every possible way: by being observed, listened on tap, limited in speech, and even in thought.

The life of the protagonist in the story Winston Smith represents the evolution of

a latitudinarian person to a brainwashed supporter of the regime. In the beginning of the plot Mr. Smith is portrayed as a rebellious and thoughtful person, who successfully resists the influence of the party. Even though he is a rebellious nature, Winston is afraid of being punished and that is why he tries to conceal his thoughts and actions in one diary, which he accurately hides from the regime. Since his first writing in this booklet, Mr. Smith is chased by the paranoia that his deeds will soon be revealed. Instead of becoming more introvert and mysterious he turns to be more brave and careless. Since this moment a party official named O’Brien appears to be more and more important, and influential for Winston. O’Brien successfully deceives him that he is working for the rebellious organization that plans a take-over. Winston is attracted by such an idea and is easily convinced to become a member of this fake organization.

However, he is captured for his illegal actions and while he is in prison the party officials attempt to brainwash him using different psychological and physical tortures. His destiny is in unison with the one of all the people who stood against the regime and got caught. Finally, the transformation is complete and irreversible. Winston Smith is even unable to feel any temptations about his ex-love Julia.

The message of the novel is that once a party gains a full control in its country and rules in a totalitarian way it can not be stopped in any way. The book’s contemporaries could easily make the connection between it and the communistic regime in USSR and the fascistic in Spain. The outcome is that people were convinced that a dictatorship in not the right way to rule a country.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

A Story of a Bulgarian

It was a gloomy rainy noon. Kris woke up with a strong headache that reminded him about his experience at last night's party. He realized that he had run out of cigarettes, but was too lazy to go down to the store and that is why he asked one of his friends that was left to sleep in his apartment to give him one. After a small quarrel for the last cigarette in the box they decided to call Nikki, who was coming to their house, to go to the store and buy one box of Victory. Soon after that Kris resembled that he was on duty in the warehouse the next day. This fact made him upset because he had planned to go to a disco club that night. A timeto relax was needed and Nikki, who just arrived, switched the TV on. Together the three boys watched SKAT program and the show of Volen Siderov. The show captured their attention so much that they did not realize how quickly the box of cigarettes was emptied. The flavor in the room reminded of Kremicovci factory. After an hour and a half somebody called Kris and asked him to go to the gym together, but he refused because he had important stuff to do. The two boys that were in his apartment left soon and he began preparing for going out. The important thing that he had to do was to hang out in a café with one girl. Kris used to spend all his days in this careless and free way.

One day two old friends of his called Kris while he was drinking his third beer for the day. They used to be good friends in secondary school, but had not met for almost two years. Kris was happy to meet his old friends ,Gatso and Batso, because he was bored from his temporary ones and was impatient to leave his home. The problem was that he had to take his dog for a walk. He thought whether his friends should wait for him to execute his duties or not. Finally Kris decided that they were used to waiting for him and would not get angry. As always he did not think of calling them to tell that he will be late and the two boys had to wait for forty minutes in one small smoky café called “Fresh”. This café was near Kris’s school, so he had to travel again the route he has been traveling every day for the last eleven years.

After the long journey he finally reached the destination. There he finally met his friends. All of them were very excited to meet an old fellow.

-How is it going in school? - one of the friends asked.

-Almost nothing has changed since you both moved to different schools, except for the fact that the old dean is back and soon it will look like a concentration camp.

-How come? - the second boy asked.

-Because the old crazy man wants to improve the discipline in classes and at the school at all. We have to bring our personal school cards everyday to school.

Their conversation lasted for an hour and a half because the boys had a work to do. The three of them left the café and decided that they would call each other to meet again in the close future.

Kris continued his monotonous life as if nothing had happened. He was hanging out with the same old friends, talkingabout the same old things and visiting the same old places. In spite of his sedentary life, the boy had hope in his life- his father was high in the hierarchy of the judicial system and Kris was a member of the political party ATAKA.

One day as he was driving his car- BMW 320 with the radio set on “Veselina” station-the most popular chalga station in Bulgaria, Kris saw people from his old section. They were walking near the boulevard; they were laughing and talking loudly. He wanted to stop and say hi to them, but after that regretted it because these people were not as cool as him anymore. After a bit of driving Kris reached the home of the girl he met in the café. She came down and got in his car. Her name was Penka. She was a tall girl with blond hair and blue eyes. The main difference between these two young people was that she was an intelligent and a diligent young girl, while Kris was satisfied with what he had and did not have ambitions for much more in the close future.

The couple used to go to some restaurant or café and to talk about different subjects of life, but there was nothing more than a friendship between them even though he was in love with her. This was one of Kris’s main problems- he was afraid to show his feelings to other people.

Time passed and some of his friends went to study and live in foreign countries, but he did not leave the country. Kris did not want to change his habits and living environment and even continued living with his parents. The only thing that changed in his life was that he became a candidate for a member of the parliament as a member of his party ATAKA.

After five years there was a meeting of the people that studied together until seventh grade. There Kris met people whose faces he had even forgotten. His closest friends from childhood were there and they were happy to meet again and chat about their life.

- How are doing guys? – Do you have a job? - one of them asked.

- I’m fine; I just graduated in England and I will continue working there for several years. – Gaco replied.

- I’m okay too; I am going to study in a culinary academy in London for the next two years. - Baco answered.

The conversation was long and exciting because everyone was eager to understand about the life of his old friends and to remember his childhood by telling some jokes or stories from the past. The only person who was anxious in this situation was Kris. It was so not because of his bad childhood memories, but because of the fact that he did not graduate university and his only hope for the future is to become a member of the parliament and to steal Bulgarian people’s money.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

My hopes and wishes for the future

I am a person who wants to control the events in his life and to be responsible for his future. Right now I am experiencing a very important period in my life when I have to make decisions that will define my future life. Like everyone else I have my hopes and desires, favorite and least favorite subjects and considering them I make my choices. I have chosen to study chemistry or chemical engineering in the United Kingdom and my main goal is to be admitted into a good university there. I hope that I will keep my relationships with my friends and will meet new people in my new school.
I have chosen to study chemistry or a subject in this area because this is the subject in whichI do best and this is the sphere of science that attracts me most. In our everyday life we are surrounded by chemistry derivatives and nobody can imagine his life without this science and its products that vary from the paper to the most modern metals used in the airplane building. This is a sphere of science that gives a lot of opportunities for profitable jobs that will not only bring lots of money, but also will be interesting for me. In order to become a part of the world of chemistry I have to put in a lot of effort to attend a good university and to go successfully through the years of studying there. Even though it seems like a hard task I believe that I am able to achieve that and I hope that one day I will be a successful chemist and will play an important role in the development of this science.
The life of one person consists of his professional life and a personal such. The second part is what I want to keep in this way for the future. I have few a very close and good friends of mine that I hope to keep in the future. They are people who I can trust for everything. I can not imagine my life without them and that is why they are so important for me. I wish that the distance between us in the next years will not affect our friendships in a negative way. Even though I will not be able to see my best friends I believe that we will still be very close and one day will manage to be together for a longer time.
Everybody has his dreams and tries to achieve them. My dreams and hopes are to have a successful career in the sphere of chemistry and to have a nice personal life, and a will do my best in order to achieve that.