Posting on others’ blogs

9 11 2012

I’m getting questions from people who say they can’t post on others’ blogs. Note that you have to be logged into your own blog to do so. Some have been able to do it, so I’m trying to figure out why others can’t.  Those of you who have been able to post:  Have you also clicked on “Follow me” on the class page (, for example?) That may make a difference. Or it may just be that those who can’t post on others’ blogs are trying to do it from the class page link. It’s looking like the “Follow me” link is necessary.

Tweaking your blog

8 11 2012

A few more things I’ve discovered just by poking around on the blog Dashboard:

– Rename your blog to whatever you want, such as Sue’s Blog or Blahblahblog, etc., and also change or get rid of that annoying phrase about the bees’ knees or cat’s pajamas. Go to Dashboard/Settings/Site Title or Tagline. Make the changes and be sure to click on Save Changes.

– Change your background at any time or every week if you wish. Go to Dashboard/Appearance/Themes and use the Live Preview to see which ones will transfer the images. (If you’re good at this, you can put in your own pictures, but I haven’t figured that out yet.) You also can go to Freshy/Customize/Header Image and choose one of the 20 images there.

– Remove that dumb “Hello World” post by going to Dashboard/Posts/All Posts/Hello World.  Click on Trash and it’s gone. (Just be sure you don’t trash your Journal posts!)


Journal 9

7 11 2012

Respond to another of the eight prompts from Journal 8, using stories from the second half of the book to support your points. Be sure to label it 9-1, etc. Due by class time Tuesday, Nov. 13.

Editing Journal 8

6 11 2012

1. Go to Dashboard/Posts/Edit

2. Change title to Journal 8-(number of the response, such as Journal 8-3). No need for MLA header info with your name, my name, class, date, etc.

3. Identify the book title in italics and any references to the short story/chapter titles in quotation marks.

4. Paragraphing. A 250-word blog is equal to about one typed page, so break it up into two or three paragraphs.

5. Length: 250 words minimum/275/300. Responses: 100 words minimum/125/150.

6. Respond to two other people’s posts by class time on Thursday. If posts already have two responses, do other ones.


Journal 8

1 11 2012

Journal 8 (first half of book)

Due: Tuesday, Nov. 6; 2 Blog Responses Due: Thursday, Nov. 8

 Choose one of the topics below. Your blog should be at least 250 words.  You will also do two responses of at least 100 words each.

1.  In the story “The Only Traffic Signal on the Reservation Doesn’t Flash Red Anymore,” the narrator tells us, “It’s hard to be optimistic on the reservation” (49). In this book, how does Alexie illustrate the truth of this statement? What purpose do you see in Alexie writing this kind of book about reservation life?

2.  In many stories in this collection, the longing to be a warrior like Crazy Horse and the desire for heroes and heroines is dramatized. Why do you think the desire for heroes is so strong on the reservation?

3.  Sherman Alexie himself left the reservation. What are the advantages and disadvantages for a Native American born on the reservation to leave it?

4.  One character, Thomas Builds-the-Fire, is a seer, a person who has visions and tells stories. He also can be seen as the repository of the tribe’s past. Why do you think the others on the reservation avoid him and his stories?

5.  This book is a well-known and highly-regarded short story collection. Why do suppose this is, since they are written about what is currently a minority population in the U.S. What common issues do these stories discuss that people of other ethnic groups can relate to?

6.  In many of these stories, people are drinking heavily, drunk, or passed out. Alexie has been criticized for keeping the stereotype of the drunken Indian alive. Why do you suppose he chose to show this aspect of Indian life?

7. Discuss Alexie’s use of humor in the book and how it helps people on the reservation to survive.

8. Choose your own topic: Choose to explore a particular theme from the short story collection that you find interesting and/or important.