English Paper #2
This is the second paper I wrote for English this semester. It was an in-class essay, so it took me a while to remember to get it off the computer at the college. I was graded an A- for this particular piece of work. Sorry for how the copying and pasting process can mess things up. I tried to fix it all, but I probably missed somethings.
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In Fields of Green
In my sleepy little suburban hometown, Piper, one can hardly help but notice the close-knit kinship of her residents, the squarely defined layout of her uniform grids, and the generally clean and hospitable atmosphere of the place. But wait! What’s this? A large abandoned piece of tilled and leveled ground now overgrown by weeds? And what are those weeds? Tobacco? What on God’s green earth is going on here?!?
Well, that would be the official Piper Recreational Park and Playground. No, this is no jest or jibe; the city set out to create these grounds more than seven years ago. The ground was cleared, tilled, leveled, and, in all other ways, prepared for her soon-approaching (we thought) future filled with playful children, anxious parents, romantic youngsters, and even more people of such a hopeful sort. Yes, this would indeed have been the final finishing touch to our otherwise utopian little home – the “icing on the cake” or “cherry on top,” if you will. Unfortunately, Fate is a fickle mistress, and she is not mocked nor affected by even the greatest laid plans of mice and men and playground designers.
Despite constant petitioning from lobbyists such as myself, and others, the city has fallen lax on her duties for the more than five years that have passed since the groundwork was completed. Even now there’s no playground to be seen – only a spacious growing field yielding a certain, somewhat questionable crop.
See, Piper is located in Virginia, close to the site of some old English plantation from the Colonial period in our Nation’s history. For anyone who may be unaware, tobacco was the cash crop of Virginia during her earliest times (it is from this very fact that our city’s name originates). These tobacco crops were planted all over, and many remnants remain even to this day. We treat them like weeds essentially; we simply spray them down with whatever herbicide is closest to our hands. Simple, no?
Well, here’s the catch: the would-be park is located on city property. As such, we have no right to kill off the tobacco, nor can we chop it down. In fact, it would be straight-up illegal to do so no matter the weight of our intentions. So while the city councilmen have been enjoying their Cuban cigars, in a passive way, they have been growing and protecting their own.
My colleagues and I are not pleased. Being on the committee that originally planned the Piper Recreational Park and Playground, we feel a certain kind of personal attachment to this project and would like to see it through to completion. It simply will not do to have a field of tobacco growing where we purposed a swing set to be. We are now at our wit’s end and do demand that action be taken. Seven years of turning an ignorant eye is about seven years too many.
Like any good uprising, we have our goals and the weapons needed to see them through. Our objective is simple: We want control over the preparation for and the construction of the Piper Recreational Park and Playground. We then want permission to tap the funds needed to again have the ground cleared, tilled, and leveled and the furnishing begun – a privilege previously denied to our committee. After the city grants us these requests, we will begin construction. These are our demands, and, if they are not met, we will be forced to take action.
What is that action? What position are we in that we may make such demands? The answer is so simple that it may surprise you. As the still-functioning committee in charge of planning, we retain the right to open the park. This we will do if the city refuses to comply with our wishes. This is no small threat; to open the park now means disastrous effects for the entire city. Surely there are mischievous teenagers and ignorant children who would be harshly affected. I can’t imagine anyone who desires for his or her children to have access to a half-acre crop of tobacco, nor a couple that might like their toddlers to play games in such an environment, but, with God as our witness, that’s exactly what will happen if the city again refuses to yield to our requests.
Now, this may seem like action against the populace, and it may be so from a certain point of view, but the blame for conditions such as those I have just described rests on the shoulders of our city officials just as squarely as Piper rests in Virginia. Surely even the most obstinate of citizens would sooner take up protest than allow their children to grow and mature in a tobacco patch. This behavior of the citizenry could not possibly fall on deaf ears. We’ve had enough of this crap, and it’s time for the city to fix the problem it has created through it’s own negligence. It’s either that, or embrace the sale of a “Tobacco Patch Kids” line of children’s dolls.