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Sunday, April 22, 2012

MY FAMILY WHO TAKES CARE OF ME BUT ALSO MAKES ME CRAZY By Wendy, age 9



Gon-Gon, My Grandpa Who Tied Me Up and Cooked Like a Tornado and Died

One afternoon when I was four I was home alone with my grandpa. I heard loud music. I wanted to find out where it was coming from. I left my apartment and went downstairs. I got stuck in the little space where the mailboxes are, between the gate to the building and the door to go upstairs to the apartments. My brother Andy was at school. My parents were at work. The building manager found me. He brought me upstairs. He said, “Where is your apartment?” I led him there. My grandpa said, “There you are.” I told him what happened. He tied me with a rough, bumpy rope and twisted a knot on my dad’s door. He tied my hands and stomach. I cried. My grandpa went out to pick up Andy. I cried and cried until they came home. Then Andy untied me. I felt free now. The day went by, but I didn’t tell my parents. It’s complicated why. I didn’t want him to be punished and he got cancer anyway. I also loved my grandpa’s cooking! When he cooked he would whirl through the kitchen, rattling pots, clattering plates, shaking soy sauce, chopping Chinese sausages, cracking eggs, and steaming rice. The food smelled good but it was more interesting to watch Gon-gon work. My grandpa died January 11, 2010. I miss him even though he tied me up that one time because I loved his cooking so much.

Judy, My Sister Who Walks

My baby sister, Judy, was born on September 19, 2010. She is one now. She crawls through the jungle of our apartment, roaring. She slides on hands and knees across the table like an ice-skater. Judy is learning to walk and here’s how: she squats down. She lifts her hands and wobbles toward me. She falls. I take her hand, pull her up and she walks. Now she walks everywhere. Whenever I give Judy something to eat, I run away and she follows me because she thinks that I have more.


Andy, My Brother Who Broke his Wrist

My earliest memory about Andy is when he broke his wrist when he was eight. He jumped up and down on the bench at school. He fell and broke his wrist. An herbalist wrapped a cloth around his arm. The cloth smelled like garlic and onion. It felt like a bumpy road. The herbs didn’t work so he went to the hospital and got a cast. Andy probably felt weird with a broken wrist but I felt excited because it was the first time I saw a cast! Andy is a graduate of Room 2 and he wrote a book about his experience called My Broken Wrist.

My Mom and Dad Who Got Divorced

My parents got divorced. They used to silent fight sometimes. They argued so much that they got divorced. It was scary when they fought. One day my mom and my family (except my dad) moved to a new apartment in Chinatown. I wondered what was going on, but I didn’t say a thing. I left things alone. I like that I moved and I don’t like it too. I like that my mom and dad don’t have to fight anymore, but I don’t like that my dad is alone. He says, “I miss you and why don’t you come home?” I feel sad for him. I think there is a silent wall between my parents.

The Lady From Beijing Who is Demanding

A lady came from Beijing to live in my dad’s apartment. I don’t even know her name. The first time we met, her pretty dress swirled, defying gravity. In the car, she doesn’t like to wear a seatbelt. In the house, she doesn’t like messes. She doesn’t like to take off her shoes. She is demanding! She makes me get out her slippers from the shelf. I saw a picture of my dad and the lady holding hands and staring at each other. He was wearing a tuxedo and the lady was wearing a wedding gown. I think they got married and didn’t tell me.

 Here are three things I wonder about her:
1. Is she a model in China?
2. How old is she?
3. Is she my dad’s wife?

She looks mean, but pretty. I am scared. I’m not even going to ask my dad if they are really married. My plan is to keep wondering and running away from my fears.

About the Author

Hi! My name is Wendy and I am nine years old. I live in San Francisco, sometimes in Chinatown with my mom and grandma, and my brother and sister, and sometimes on Polk Street with my dad. I speak Chinese at home. My family came from China, somewhere I have never gone. I would like to go there one day. I like to draw and I am good at running. When I grow up I want to be an astronomer. If I were to have one superpower I would choose the power of transformation because if I were falling I could turn into a bird. If I were to go back in time I would choose to go to the year 0 because I want to see Jesus Christ being born. I am also the author of Stung and Election Day
.

Friday, April 13, 2012

THE LOST VOICE By Jessica, age 8


A man with a beard and a star-covered dress hid in a trashcan in front of the Fillmore Auditorium. He pointed his wand at the building. He froze like a statue and thought about making Sally throw up. His magic sped through the wall and rested in her throat.

*

Sally walked onto the stage. Her braids flung back and forth in front of her face as she rumbled like an airplane. She threw up red stuff. She couldn’t sing because she was really embarrassed. They stopped the song and the guitarist called the doctor. The doctor said Sally could not sing anymore. “There are four people in your band, right?” the doctor said.

“Yep,” the guitarist said.

“You can’t finish the concert,” said the doctor.

The guitarist felt sad about Sally. The guitarist said bye and he hung up the phone.

*

Sally went to the desert because people say this is a good place to hide. Fog covered all the cactus. She saw a pile of mud. It was huge. Sally jumped in the mud. The mud was too hot. Her brain shut down. Her head spun like a tornado. A person ran out of the fog. Sally took a notebook and a pencil out of her backpack and wrote hi. The person waved his hand at Sally. She waved back. The person said, “My name is Jack.”

Sally wrote in her notebook, I can’t speak.

Jack yelled out loudly, “What’s up!!?”

Sally rolled her eyes at Jack and wrote in her notebook, I am not deaf! She pulled a large tent out of her backpack then Jack and Sally set it up and went to sleep. A plane landed in the desert. Sally and Jack woke up with their hair sticking up.

“Don’t worry,” Jack said. “That was just a plane landing on the sand.” Jack’s eyes popped out as if a bee buzzed inside his brain. “Let’s go outside!”

Sally and Jack ran outside. Jack said, “That is the biggest plane I’ve ever seen.”

Five men came out of the plane. One said, “Get in the plane.”

Jack said,” Okay.” Sally and Jack stepped into the plane.

Jack said, “Cool!”

The airplane flew and flew and landed in a park.

The men said, “Good bye.”

Sally and Jack wandered around the park. They saw a guy sitting on a bench by a fountain. He wore an army helmet and a coat made of feathers. He said, “My name is Sam.”

“Oh, hello, Sam,” said Jack.

“Do you want to come to my house?” asked Sam. “I have snacks.”

“Sure,” said Jack.

Jack and Sally followed Sam to his house.

Jack asked, “Can I go to bed?”

“Ok. We have a bed for you,” Sam said. “Go down to ninth door on the right. Sally, you can take the room across the hall. I have a vampire movie if you guys want to watch it with me.”

“Vampire movie, huh?” Jack said. “Well, how nice.”


Sam went into his room and Sally went to hers. She dropped her backpack on the rug. Its furry green hairs lay down under her shoes. She pulled out her dairy and wrote: November 12. I found a person who is a little fat. Sam is rich. He’s nice but his eyes glow red in the dark. She put her diary in her backpack. She stood up and opened the door. A sheet hovered in the doorway. She lifted the sheet. There was no one. A string hung from the sheet. Sally grabbed for the string but her hand went through the sheet! A ghost, Sally thought, and ran to Jack’s room. When she opened the door she saw Jack trapped in a birdcage. The man in the starry dress from the Fillmore Auditorium was there.

“Help, Sally!” yelled Jack.

“Ni gow nee mah!” said the wizard. The house shook. “Do you want me to let Jack out?”

Sally wrote on her notepad, yes!

“Then give me your hair!”

Why? Sally wrote.

“I need it for my collection.”

Jacked looked seriously at Sally. The wizard twitched his finger. Scissors and a bottle of hair spray floated into his hands. Sally snatched the scissors and snipped off her braids. The wizard’s hand turned into a gun. A pink puff giggled out of its barrel and came swirling toward Sally’s mouth.

“Sally!” said the pink puff. ”Eat me!”

Sally opened her mouth and swallowed the pink puff. She said, “Ah!! It tastes like ice cream!”



About the Author

Hi! My name is Jessica. I am eight years old. I live in San Francisco with my Mom, Dad, my brother, and my sister. I like to knit. My favorite book is The Big Adventures Of Majoko by Machiko Fujo. I go to Chinese School on Sundays. I am learning Mandarin. I already speak Cantonese. My favorite foods are chocolate cakes and chocolate ice cream. Yummy! I am also the author of In My Bakery.

Monday, April 9, 2012

WHEN I WAS LITTLE By Liyi, age 9


Pigeons

When I was four I used to feed pigeons in New York with my grandma and my mom. The sky was gray but it didn’t rain or snow. Grass and colorful flowers moved back and forth in the wind. Feeding pigeons was illegal but it was also fun because they made these cooing sounds when they ate. One time I saw a pigeon with only one leg. It frightened me because I thought my leg might disappear too. But it was also funny because that bird looked like it was playing hopscotch. It’s head faced the other way but its eyeball was glaring at me.



Preschool

When I was in preschool there was a boy who usually slept through the whole naptime like a hibernating bear. But one day he didn’t, he just sat up and swirled his tie. He wouldn’t sleep. The teacher grabbed his tie and pulled on it. The boy cried and cried. I stared at them. Another kid peed on his mat and the yellow liquid rolled onto the floor. The teacher stopped pulling the crying kid’s tie and helped the wet kid change. I pretended I was sleeping when the teacher looked at me. I was so scared. I thought the teacher was going to throw my shoe in the trashcan. She did that to other kids who didn’t sleep. I was really lucky that she didn’t see me. I wonder why they let this mean person be a preschool teacher. She probably thought she was teaching kids a lesson. I wonder if when this teacher was little, her teacher was mean to her. Once there was this lady who slapped my face when I came out of my apartment. She didn’t tell me why. I didn’t tell my mom because I was afraid that she would try to take revenge. When I’m a grown up, I know I won’t be mean to kids. I hope that slap won’t turn me into a violent person.



Philadelphia

When I was seven I lived in New York, and my family went to Philadelphia to visit my relatives. When I got there, I was shocked to see my fifteen-year-old cousin drinking out of a baby bottle. She sucked on it while she was playing video games. Blue light from the TV reflected off the glass bottle. Sometimes I still felt like sucking on a baby bottle like my cousin. I wanted to be a baby again so I asked my mom to buy me a bottle but she said no. I don’t feel this way anymore and I didn’t even notice when I stopped.



About The Author

Hi! My name is Liyi. I am nine years old. I live in San Francisco with my mom. I like to make art using recycled parts; my teacher Robyn does that for art projects. I didn’t think it would really be fun but when I tried it I liked it. I am good at thinking of new designs. I want to be good at climbing someday. I also want to be an artist. I am different from other kids because I am very scared and shy of most people I don’t know. If I were an animal I would be a honey badger so I would be able to protect myself with my long claws. I would dig holes to stay out of the hot sun. My favorite books are the Ivy and Bean series even though they are for little kids and I’m a big kid. If I could have a superpower it would be super speed so I could win capture the flag all the time instead of Brandon. If I could go into the future I would go to 3002 because I wonder if I will still be alive that year. My family is from China. I was born there but left when I was a baby. I don’t know how the weather is or how it looks and I wonder what the schools are like. I would like to go someday. I speak Chinese at home. I also wrote The Beautiful Lady. This is my second published book.

Friday, April 6, 2012

SHARK STORY by Alex, age 9


Clink, Clink, Clink, Shuffle, Shuffle, Shuffle. Mr. Liang dumps bottles and papers into the recycling bin. “Why did people elect me?” asks Mr. Liang. “And who is supposed to empty the recycling?”

“You are, Bill,” says Mrs. Liang, his secretary, twin sister and wife. “Did you know the area was restricted?”

“Do you mean the sixth Floor? We have a key to there.”

They take the elevator to the sixth floor of City Hall. There is a green army tank in the middle of the hallway, the sun gleaming off its armor. Dust flies through the air.

Cough. Cough. Cough. Cough. Cough. Cough. “Does the tank work?” asks the mayor.

Mrs. Liang says, “I think there’s a way we can use it to solve the unemployment problem.”

“Will it fit in the elevator?”

“Sure! Why not?”

They get in and drive the tank into the elevator, down to the first floor, out of City Hall, right past the metal detector, and out to Union Square.

“Why are we doing this?” Mr. Liang says.

“I’ll tell you later.”

“Nope.”

“Okay,” Mrs. Liang says. “I want to get rid of adults. They are blaming you because the employment rate is sky high, and this is the only way.”

“What is the ‘only way’?”

“We have to kill them off.”

“You’re kidding. With this tank?”

“Well, not exactly. Just watch.”

“This tank looks like it’s from the Korean War or World War II. Do think it’s still any good?”



BOOM, CRACK! The Victory Statue tilts diagonally, pointing its trident at the sun. It creaks loudly as it crashes down onto Macy’s. Everybody gasps.

“Someone get help!” yells a tourist.

“I’ll call 911,” says a woman in purple velvet.

Everyone stops shopping and stares at the Victory Statue.

“Well, no one looks dead,” says Mr. Liang. “I think we need to try something else.”


The next morning Mrs. Liang picks up the phone.

“This is Dow Chemical Lab, San Francisco Bay Area Branch. May I help you?”

“Yes,” says Mrs. Liang. “Do you sell hexazylenadultium? Can you tell me about it, too?”

“Yes.” Tap. Tap. Tap. “Just a minute. Hexazylenadultium is a nonmetal chemical poisonous to adults. Why do you need this anyway?”

Mrs. Liang flips through her notepad. Not enough jobs, too many budget cuts. Kids keep turning eighteen year after year. I want to commit suicide, and kill my husband. She twirls the telephone cord. She kicks her chair. She bangs on the stapler. “I’d like to order one thousand gallons. Send it to City Hall in San Francisco, Federal Express, next-day air.”

“Gallons? What? This chemical is only sold in milligrams.”

“Oh.”

“If you need a lot, use shark fins. They contain high levels of this carcinogen.”



The fax machine beeps. Mrs. Liang pulls out the page and reads it then hands it to Mr. Liang. “Look at this,” she says. “It’s about a campaign to ban shark fin soup.”

“Perfect idea,” Mayor Liang says. “Let’s save sharks!”

“Are you out of your mind?”

“What?”

“It’s Chinese tradition.”

“It’s bad for the environment.”


Mr. Liang takes his place in the Board of Supervisors’ Chambers next to all the other board members.

“What about AB 376?” Supervisor Sherman says.

“Where’s the agenda?” Supervisor Wu says.

“What about our budget problem?” Supervisor Lewis says.

“What about Occupy San Francisco?” Supervisor Lau says.

“Eureka!” Mr. Liang yells. “I have the agenda.”

Supervisor Mirkarimi rushes into the chambers, waving his cell phone. “Look at this!”

Mr. Liang and the other supervisors look at the screen. “Isn’t time for North Park?” Mayor Liang says.

“No!” Supervisor Mirkarimi says. “Watch.”

“Jenny Jang here,” says a reporter on screen, “Live in Vacaville.” Behind her crowds of people are marching. “I have one of the protest leaders here with me. Mrs. Liang.” The reporter turns to the mayor’s wife. “So, tell us, why are you against AB 376?”

“It’s racist!” Mrs. Liang yells. “This is a protest against racism.”



Mrs. Liang walks into the mayor’s office, holding two bowls of soup.

“What is that?”

“Shark fin soup!”

“We’ve been to tons of banquets this year and you never ate any shark fin soup. Why do you love it so much, all of the sudden?”

“Look, I called Dow Chemical.” Mrs. Liang tells the mayor about her phone conversation. “It could be the solution to the unemployment problem.”

“Okay, let’s eat.”

“Yeah, why don’t have mine, too, honey?”


About the Author

Hi, my name is Alex. I’m nine years old and I live in San Francisco with my three sisters, my mom, and my dad. I like democracy. I am interested in voting and protesting. I’m different from other kids because I’m into bureaucracy. For example, I really like learning about rules and filling out forms. My favorite book is Journey to Topaz because it is set during World War II. If I could go back in time, I would go to the time during the Chinese Civil War because I would like to ask Mao Zedong about his ideas. My parents come from Vietnam, which is country I never been to. I would like to go because I want to see how they deal with their economy. If I could ask everyone on Earth a question, I would ask, “Do you like communism?” I wish everyone had the right to free speech in China. I’m also the author of Don’t Worry About It And Other Stories.

LOVE THIS STORY? DOWNLOAD THE BOOK HERE, COMPLETE WITH ALL ILLUSTRATIONS!


Tuesday, April 3, 2012

HAIR HELP By Jessie, age 9




“Do you know where my I pod is?” Frank said, shuffling through Bob’s backpack. “What is all this stuff here?”

“It’s my stuff,” Bob said. “I need it for my style.”

A flight attendant pushed a cart down the aisle and said, “Do you want a beverage, sir?”

Frank said, “No thank you” and picked up a skinny can and reads its label. “A weightless spray with UV protection that gives polished shine and a sensuous, soft touch to the hair?”

“Well, doesn’t it?” Bob said, touching his hair.

“Don’t bring that next time!”

“You don’t know style.”

“I don’t care! Just don’t bring it!”

Bob didn’t answer. He looked through the window at the wing. “What’s that?”


A falcon flew into the one of the engines. Babies screamed. Bob and Frank grabbed their parachute packs. They jumped out of the plane. Their hair flew up and wind blew them through the sky. They pulled their parachute cords and two black canopies popped open above them.

Bob and Frank landed. All around them rubbery petals poked out of curvy-stemmed plants. Branches of boab trees clawed at the sky above them.

Bob said, “Good thing I brought the parachutes.”

They took off their parachute packs. “We’re probably somewhere in the outback,” Frank said.

“Let’s go that way,” Bob said, pointing at a cluster of tree “Frank! I'm scared that a wild animal will attack us.”

“Why, how do you know that there won’t be a wild animal the other way? There might be a sleeping tiger or a lion.”
“I just think this way is the right way.”

“How about Heads and Tales?”

“Okay then,” Bob said.

Frank pulled a penny from his pocket and said, “heads is left and tails is right.” Frank flipped the coin. The coin flew through the air and landed on Frank’s hand.

“Tails,” Bob yelled. “Let’s go.”

Thump thump. A kangaroo hopped in front of Frank. Frank stared at the kangaroo's eyes. It grabbed Bob by the shirt and shoved him into its pouch then hopped away.

Frank spotted Bob’s backpack on the ground. He opened it and found a flashlight and Bob’s skinny bottle of hairspray inside. He popped the cap off and shook it. He closed the backpack and followed the kangaroo into a cave. Frank turned his flashlight on and tiptoed. He found the kangaroo, shook the bottle of hairspray and sprayed it at its eyes. The kangaroo jumped around. Frank carefully pulled Bob out of the pouch and they ran for their lives. The kangaroo chased Bob and Frank to the edge of a cliff. Bob and Frank turned and looked down. Water swished and crashed onto jagged rocks. Bob and Frank closed their eyes and jumped off. They landed in the water and looked out at the sea around them. A cruise ship floated along the horizon. They waved and yelled, “Help!”

The ship sailed ashore and dropped anchor. The captain said, “Eight hundred dollars, please.”

“We’ll have to pay later. We don’t have any money.”

They boarded and Bob headed to the bathroom with the backpack. He came out with spiky hair a few minutes later and said, “Like my new hairstyle?”

“That looks cool,” Frank said. “I love you with spikes.”

“Are you mad at me?”

“No.”

About the Author

Hi! My name is Jessie and I am nine years old. I live in San Francisco with my mom, dad, and brother. I like to draw, and I am good at reading and typing. I like reading adventure stories by other Room 2 authors because they have exciting action. My favorite is Election Day by Wendy. Some day I want to be good at kickball. When I grow up I want to be a pharmacist because my cousin is. I am also the author of A Dangerous Day in King Tao’s Palace.