English Blog

A Kaleidoscope of Possibilities… * April 13, 2010

Filed under: Middlesex — writing4english @ 12:16 PM
 Though Cal was raised as a female – it makes sense he never had much in common with his brother Chapter 11, but then again he possibly wasn’t in tune with his masculine side… besides the fact he had a crush on the Obscure Object that was a female.
It seems as though the more Cal is writing his story (technically Eugenides is, but still), the more he is finding out about things that contribute to who he is and what everyone else was possibly thinking. He talks about his dad videotaping his birthday party and says that perhaps he should take a look through the eyes of his father.
The difference between us is that when I was younger, I never questioned anything about myself or my family. Of course we all may wonder what we’ll be in the future but I cannot recall questioning my sex or gender. When I was little I would see my brothers playing in the dirt and smashing bugs – I was so thankful that God didn’t want me to be born as a boy.
We are drawn to people we can relate to; hence the reason why I am not particular drawn to Cal. He was drawn to his College girlfriend Olivia because they both experienced hurt early on in their lives (Eugenides 319). We all experience some kind of hurt in different areas of our lives and so far, none of mine can compare to the pain Cal was going through. He (as a girl) had to read in class and when the redhead girl (Obscure Object) walks in he says, “But my mind had stopped paying attention to their meaning” [the words]. I wonder if at any point in his life he stopped paying attention to the meaning of his sex and just lived life. It’s almost as if he was living for everyone else. I think he saw his life through a lens of various colors… almost like a kaleidoscope. Sometimes it made him happy, and sometimes it confused him. He quoted a poem that related to the “galaxies of freckles hurtling and drifting to every end of [the  red-head’s] curved, warm-blooded univerese,” but I think it could relate to my kaleidoscope viewpoint.  “Glory be to God for dappled things” (Eugenides 323).
Quote of the day:
“The universe is flung into a kaleidoscope of new possibilities.” -Jean Houston
Lori E. Allan

Final Essay Proposal

(1)  I’ve chosen essay topic 3. I want to use Cal as a metaphor for Detroit. If possible I would like to use a few other examples of people from the book and relate them to Detroit too. Milton, for example, grows a beard which is compared to the un-manicured lawns in Detroit.

(2)  I want to piece my essay on Detroit as well as my essay on identity. I think it would be good to relate aspects of myself to Detroit as well. Detroit is a part of my identity because I grew up here and I think it would be nice to tie in 2 different lives living in Detroit. Cal lived here a while ago and I lived here when things were changed. I want to talk about the then and now of people, city conditions, and more.

(3)  Middlesex was a metaphorical book that opened up different perspectives on things such as sex, gender, identity, and Detroit; because of this, it provokes the reader to stand in the middle of these topics and view them from different standpoints such as Cal and his relation to Detroit.

(4)  Sources I intend to use are:

  1. Article: Is Anybody Happy in Detroit? By Walter Wasacz. It talks about how we view Detroit as well as how visitors view Detroit. It also talks about the blemishes of Detroit and also uses some information that Dean Vogel from the UDM School of Architecture used in a exhibition last year. I think is a good article to relate to Cal… how people who know him view him, how others view him and the blemishes he has faced.


  1. I plan on using more sources…

One Response to “A Kaleidoscope of Possibilities… *”

  1. OK, Lori. Here you go:

    Blog-I liked it. I like the kaleidoscope concept, especially paired with the constellation of freckles. Good quote selection.

    Proposal-What you describe in #1 sounds good. However, it doesn’t seem like your thesis matches up with your initial idea? It sounds more like the thesis for Topic #5: including all the elements of the course. In your thesis, I would include the word “metaphor” for sure, and describe who is a metaphor and how.

    Lastly, your source seems fairly legitimate, but it isn’t a book or a journal source. You needed to have one of those for this assignment AND for the final essay.

    ~Jenna G.

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