The Red Button Essay

1038 words - 5 pages

People, they inhabit the entire earth, yet they naturally have a habit to destroy the world around them and themselves. All concern for nature and the human body becomes unimportant at some point, either for no reason at all, such as the case with cigarettes, or because of greed, as is the case with Scott, who will later be discussed.
Brandon Schrand, in his essay “All That Glows,” shows the destructive nature of humans through the media of bombs. He along with some of his friends form a posse that creates bombs and detonates them in a silica quarry. They go so far as to almost kill one of their group’s members by accident and to place a fake bomb at school as a prank. In “All That Glows” Schrand explains the excitement of a bombs explosion evoking emotions with the passage “When the bomb blew, one of its caps shot like a missile, ricocheted off a slab stone, and missed Scott’s face by two feet. We all heard its whine, but Scott claims to have seen the projectile. It was coming right at me!” They continue to build many more bombs after this one even with the presence of a possibly lethal accident. This group of boys would do anything for the thrill of a bomb, even though they knew it could kill them. The idea of self-destruction does not hinder them. One may even be able to go as far as to say that they only continue only because of the dangerous aspect. This truly explicates the idea of disregard for the self and shows that people will do dangerous things for simple reasons even if their life hangs within the balance of their choices.
Schrand pulls the idea of pure death of the environment by mankind into the picture with a very simple image when he and his friends created a fake pipe bomb as a prank at school, as a result everyone deserted the halls but Mr. Carter their biology teacher “stood at his locked classroom door with a Styrofoam coffee cup in one hand and a jangling set of keys in the other.” Eventually the teacher realizes he cannot open the door before the bomb explodes, so he runs. “All that remained in the hallway was a pool of spilled coffee, the cup and its white lid, the empty bomb, and four smart-mouthed recusants who thought they had done something funny.” (Schrand, All That Glows, 3) This quote shows the reader details of death of the environment, and of mankind, by no one other than people themselves. There are a number of metaphors crammed into this quote. First, it is ironic, that the biology teacher is the one fearing for his life. Second, he has his keys in hand, this represents a car, which is the total destruction of earth by polluting the ozone layer. Also cars release poisoned air into the atmosphere, which kill plants and has enough acid in it to melt away marble. Third, the cup which falls onto the ground, Styrofoam, back at the time of this...

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