Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Fishbowl #2: Chapters 11 and 12

Hello, happy fishbowlers! Great job yesterday, by the way.

Here are your three special challenges for today:

(1) Bring a quotation into at least one of your blogs today.

(2) Ask Rob (our special contact) a question.




(3) Please capitalize your "I's" (and maintain all other capitalization rules).

Have fun!

127 comments:

  1. Why wasn't Baba proud when Amir graduated? Was it because Hassan didn't graduate with him? This is on page 131 about a third the way down. " I found him near the twenty-yard line, hands shoved in his pockets, camera dangling on his test."

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    1. I think that Baba is to proud of a person to show it. He was proud of Amir but did not show it.

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    2. I think baba was happy when amir graduated because he bought him a car.

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    3. Actually a little farther down on page 131 it says "He walked to me, curled his arm around my neck, and gave my brow a single kiss. "I am moftakhir, Amir," he said. Proud." In reality, Baba is actually proud of Amir. Do you think this would have happened if Baba and Amir were still in Afghanistan.

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    4. i think it would have however amir would've been angry because knowing baba he would've also been very proud of hassan and mightve forgotten about amir.

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    5. I think that Baba is proud of Amir but he just does not show is emotions in the same way that other people do

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    6. @max,
      I would agree and I think that if they had still been in Afghanistan I think that Baba would still be proud because his son has education now and can get a better higher education.

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  2. @Rob
    Would you say that it would be difficult to adjust from life in Afghanistan to life in America.

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    1. Josh,

      For the older people it is somewhat difficult because they lack a lot of things we take for granted in the US. Electricity is not always available, the Internet is only accessible by about 5% of the population and the ability to read and write is very low in the older folks. The younger generation is another story. The last ten years has brought cell phones (smart phones are on the way) and exposure to the West. Those in the larger cities could adapt with little effort. The country folks, not so much.

      Rob

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  4. Can cancer be caused by stress?

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    1. I don't believe that in stress can cause cancer but maybe in scientific means it can.

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  5. Has Baba always appreciated Amir but never told him how he felt?

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    1. I think that Baba loves him but will never show it

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    2. I don't think so, but I do feel like he became more appreciative of Amir when he turned into a man.

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    3. I think that Baba loves amir, but he isn't happy that Amir isn't just like Baba

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    4. I think that Baba has always a appreciated Amir but because he has always been know as a tough guy and he is not used to being loving and carrying

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    5. I think that Baba has a very rocky feelings towards Amir. His feelings towards Amir are determined by what has happened at what he wants to see in Amir.

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    6. i think its a love hate relationship, because hes his son but at the same time hes not a very good man or boy as in he doesnt real stand up for himself very much.

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  6. Why does Baba not stop smoking?

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    1. I agree alex, I bet he is addicted to the nicotine.

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    2. He already has the cancer an knows he is going to die, but it probably helps him with all the stress he has.

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    3. He continues to smoke because of his pride so if he already know he is dead he may as well continue to smoke and enjoy his last days because it is a habit and he wont quit it now because some doctor told him.

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  7. I agree Jack he does show that is some sort of gratitude towards Amir but in Baba mind he does not want to show that to Amir.

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  8. If you kept reading, then you would learn that Baba and Amir ended up being so glad, he took him to a bar and he got super drunk because he was so happy with Amir. On pg. 132, half-way down, "Tonight, I am too much happy", and "Tonight I am drinking with my son."

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  9. Hassan was always a memory for Baba and a nightmare for Amir. DO think that it will be impossible for Amir to ever be better then Hassan. A passage that shows this is on Pg. 133, it says" I wish Hassan had been with us today."

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  10. Do you think Baba will die from the cancer and if you do how do you think it will affect the story or if it will affect the story?

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    1. If Baba dies then Amir has no one to make proud when he succeeds.

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    2. I agree with Alex because Amir spent his whole childhood trying to impress Baba ,but when Baba dies Amir has nothing to live for because he has been trying to impress his dad with everything.

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    3. I think that baba will die and Amir will change and be like his dad so being more brave. Even though baba's dead Amir can do the last thing to make the feeling of baba being proud of him.

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    4. @Andrew SK8sinDENVER
      I think that Baba will end up passing soon which will leave Amir in ruins because he currently has nothing else in his life.
      -Matt Myers.

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  11. Why did Baba disapprove when Amir said that he wanted to study writing? but later in the book on page 139 beginning of the 3rd paragraph, Baba says "Amir is going to be a great writer, He has finished his first year of college and earned all A's in all of his courses.

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    1. I think he says this cause he thinks that writing is for the weak and Baba is such a stud and tough.

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  12. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    1. He smokes, he has a smoking room.

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    2. Baba smokes when he is having adult talk

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    3. @Hendrixb
      He smokes throughout a vast majority of the book. Amir talks about how he sits outside the door and wishes he was in the smoking room with Baba and his friends.
      -Matt Myers.

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  13. Will Amir ever tell his soon to be wife about his secret with hassan?

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    1. @Easton Gilliland
      I think that he wont tell anyone of what he saw because he's afraid of people calling him a coward and gutless.
      -Matt Myers.

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    2. I think eventually he will break down under stress and tell her.

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    3. I think that he will tell his wife because she is his wife, and he should be honest with her and not keep secrets. Even one as big as Hassan's

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    4. I think that he will just come out and say it to her when it comes back into his memory again. He will have so much guilt and try to get it out of him by telling someone, but his guilt will always come back because he was a coward and didn't do anything to help hassan.

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  14. Why is it that Baba didn't want Amir to tell anyone of his illness? Is he trying to keep Amir from worrying?
    -Matt Myers.

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    1. I he just want his life to end when it ends he does not want any Doctors help when it is his time it is his time.

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    2. I think he says this cause he doesn't want anyone to think he has become weak.

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    3. I think that Baba is hiding his illness from everyone because everyone thought of Baba as a god for his money and how athletic and smart he is and for doing so many good things.

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    4. I think it really has to do with that pride in Baba. Baba was always the strong man with no weaknesses in Afghanistan, but now that he is in America he has grown old and sick "Wrapped my arms around his back and pulled him up much too easily. His shoulder blade felt like a bird's wing under my fingers." (161) His mind still wants to be the strong man that he was back in Afghanistan, which is why he does not want people to know about the Cancer.

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  15. Rob,
    How do the people in Afghanistan treat you being a foreigner? Do they give you funny looks or anything?

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    1. maxg,

      Not really, I try to be friendly, say hello in Dari and engage them, which generally makes them feel that I am willing to take the time to understand them and they appreciate it. The folks who do not try to speak their language are politely ignored. Overall, they like Americans and have many questions about us. There are large numbers of Afghans living in the States and Canada so a lot have relatives (they keep in touch with distant ones) who have been to America. They know a great deal about regions (California and Washington DC...

      Rob

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  16. Why does Amir think that it is weird that the generals daughter is being honest? About her past.

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    1. I think he thinks its weird is because of how he kept his past from everyone and how he didn't stand up for Hasaan. in the past

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    2. He thinks it because he ois not brave enough as a male to tell her about his past.

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  17. Rob,
    What do you do for a living?

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    1. Zac,

      I work in computers, primarily the security side.

      Rob

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  18. Why dosent the book tell about when they were in peshawar?

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    1. Because it wasn't really important. They weren't there for very long and they only need to reveal the information when they are talking about the past, which they do quite often.

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    2. It's probably not important to the main story.

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    3. I think they want us to infer from their life how it was for them in Peshawar. When they moved to Peshawar they were both different people. Amir a a young boy at heart and Baba a brave man. In America we see they are different. Amir is now a protective kind man and Baba is a scared bitter old man. We can assume many things happened to them in Peshawar that changed them.

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  19. Rob, would you say life in Afghanistan is easier, more difficult or just the same as life in America? In the book Amir and his father have a difficult hard working life in America, yet they were very rich in Kabul.

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    1. Daylon,

      One could live in Kabul much cheaper then. Amir's father was well known and connected in Kabul, something that helps a great deal. When they came to America his work skills did not provide him with a comparable life style and it was difficult for him, a proud man, to manage.

      Rob

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  20. Rob,
    Is it weird walking down the streets of Afghanistan with the military knowing something may happen?

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    1. hendrixb,

      I generally stay away from the military because of that reason. I feel safe being out on my own with a driver and a translator. I pay attention to what is going on and we take our time, talk to the soldiers and police that man the checkpoints and generally get by. I have built relationships with some of the military guards by providing cookies and candy for them to eat with the chai (tea) and that has led to them watching out for us..

      Rob

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  21. In Afghanistan when the Russians invaded for real was it like it in the book where people were dying and stuff and also were many Afghanistan moving to america to get away from all of the violence and stuff there during those hard times

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  22. On page 140 half way down the Afghan says to Amir do you really care for your father? What do you think he meant by this question? I think he meant that Amir just didnt care for Baba

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  23. On page 139, "Amir is going to be a good writer." Why did Baba finally give Amir praise in public? I always though he was embarrassed of him.

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  24. Why Did Baba and Amir decide to move to America now What made them decide to go?

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    1. I think it's partly because Amir needed a better school and also because Hassan and Ali are not there so they don't need to stay.

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    2. Yes, Baba wanted Amir to have a better education and America was the place for that... So they moved.

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    3. Well, Afghanistan is under Russian control at the moment and they could not stay in Kabul. At the time, America was hope for people, especially in the middle east. America wasn't as ruined as it is right now.

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  25. We still have alot of pages to read. Do you think Amir will go back to Kabul?

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    1. I think he will, everyone goes back to their home town eventually .

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    2. Yes, because since he is getting married he will probably take her back to his original home where he grew up.

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    3. I think Amir will go back to Kabul because in the very beging of the book Amir says he gets a call from back home that brings up a part of his past that is not good. So i think he is going to have to go back and deal with his past that he left behind. Because "The past always creeps back"

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  26. Are many people in Afghanistan very prejudiced of racist like baba in the book during chapters 11-12

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    1. Jordan,

      Yes they are. The country has at least four major ethnic groups that don't always get along and there are some smaller ones also. The groups are also broken into Tribes, Clans, and Families. There is always a power struggle going on within these groups and thus you have a great deal of fighting in families, clans and tribes. The ethnic group known as the Hazara are universally despised by all the others. First they are Shia Muslim in a country that is mostly Sunni. That means they are linked to Iran. Next, they are descents of Genghis Khan. When he attacked Afghanistan he killed a large portion of the population. The rest of the country has not forgotten that. For vengeance the Afghan has a long memory.

      Rob

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    2. Which of those groups are associated with the Taliban or Al-Queda?

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  27. On page 130 it says "I thought of all the trucks, train sets, and bikes he'd bought me in Kabul. Now America. One last gift for Amir." This along with the fact that Baba has cancer, and countless other health problems is foreshadowing to the death of Baba. The way the story skips to their life in America and describes Baba working hard suggests that Baba sacrificed himself so that Amir could get an American education and a much better life. This makes me wonder whether or not Baba thinks his sacrifice was worth all of the things Amir got to do, or if Baba is disappointed at Amir for not utilizing this gift to the best of his ability.

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  28. Why does Kamal's father grab Karim's gun and aim it at Karim?

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    1. He doesn't. He steals Karim's gun and kills himself.

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    2. He blames his sons death on the Karim, but wants to kill him but ends up killing himself out of grief.

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    3. But he does aim it at Karim briefly, this may be to make sure everyone knows to stay back and not to interfere with the situation.

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    4. Kamal dies that's why he killed himself.

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    5. The book says that he took the gun, put it in his mouth and shot, it happened so quickly that people couldnt help.

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    6. I think he was trying to protect Kamal from Karim

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  29. Who else thinks that Hassan is going to come up at Baba's funeral?

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    1. I don't because they don't have ant money to go to america and if he does to america Baba's funeral would probably be over.

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    2. I also think he will just because Baba was so nice to him and Ali.

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    3. I think that since Hassan was like a son to Baba, he will show up at his funeral to show his respect to him.

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    4. I believe that he will come to the funeral to pay his respects to Baba, but it will be weird with all of the events that have happend with Hassan and Amir.

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  30. dear Mr. rob,
    how long have you been in Afghanistan and what have you been doing there?

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    1. philip,

      I first came to Afghanistan in 2006 and have been here most of the time since. I have done a great deal of different things, but primarily worked with the Afghan military.

      Rob

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  31. Rob,
    Have you ever seen a actual kite fight? If yes, what is it like?

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    1. Jack,

      Yes I have, in the movie The Kite Runner, they have done a very good job of showing you what it is like. As you can see from the kites I sent, some people make their own. Four years ago and friend and I gave away 65 kites and had kids and adults from all over our neighborhood fighting over them.

      Rob

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  32. Rob,
    Are native Afghanistan people generally happy? Do you see more sadness then you did in the USA or do people find a way to be happy even with everything that is going on?

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    1. Ryan,

      It depends on where I am. Most of the people I run into are content. I cannot speak for the folks in areas where there is a lot of fighting, but generally most want to be able to work, raise their family and enjoy life, just as in the States.

      Rob

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  33. I like Daylons question about Baba and Amir changing places like Amir becomes the hero. I think Amir will become the hero of the book when Baba dies.
    Do you think Amir will act the same when Baba dies?

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  34. Why is it that Baba cares so much about Amir now, when in most of the book so far Baba was never impressed with Amir?

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    1. I think Baba is becoming more caring for him because he is relizing that everyone is a diffrent no one can be the same, mabe have same traits but not be the same in every way.

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    2. I think its because Hassan isn't there so Baba's giving his love to anyone he cares about and hes trying to not scare Amir with his lung cancer.

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    3. I think it is because he is finally grown up and he is starting to understand what little power he has in America. Back in Kabul, he was super rich and super powerful, and now he is not fitting in America but Amir is and he has to respect that of his son.

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    4. I think he relizes that amir is all he has now so he wants to die with a smile on amir's face.

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  35. Amir will be on his own starting a family with his new wife when Baba dies. He thinks he wont be able to take care of his self and live happily. I think this is because Baba never taught him how to live on his own. He's babied him. I think that Amir will live more bravely and stronger than ever because he's been taking care of his Baba just like a father to a son or brother to brother.

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  36. Rob,
    What branch of the military are you in, and what made you choose the path of joining the military?

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    1. Kody,

      I was in the Army. I worked with the Green Berets and I liked their working with native peoples trying to better their lives. I have worked in Vietnam, South America, Korea, and now Afghanistan. Most people want to learn things that improve their lives regardless where they live.

      Rob

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    2. Rob

      Thank you for responding and thank you for your service. HOOHA

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  37. I think Baba kept going to the flea market because he didn't want to give up and he wanted to that he was strong even thou everyone knew he already was and he probably didn't want Amir to worry as much.

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  38. Rob, is Afghanistan as modern as the book pictures it because I always think that it's an outdated sandstone articulated country.

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  39. Is it hard to move to Afghanistan being an american and also is it a difficult change to make that far away from your home country.

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  40. If Amir wasn't mad at Hassan would Hassan gone with them to america and if he does would he still be a servant,a friend, or a brother?

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  41. When they are at the store, why do they basically refused to help him when he was trying to pay with a check and not actual cash money or a credit card?

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  42. To Amir what was the most important life lesson Baba taught him?

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  43. Will Amir see any of the people he saw in Kabul like assef hassan or ali.

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  44. Rob,
    What is your job title and branch? what base are you on>

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    1. hendrixb,

      I am in Kabul and my title is Computer Network Operations Planner. I am not on a base but a civilian compound.

      Rob

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    2. Thank you. What is your MOS?

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  45. Rob,
    Living in Afghanistan must be very different from America. In the book we see Baba become very biased against Russians and bitter to them because they took over his country. Living in the homeland of the men you have fought in war do you have hate toward innocent people you see passing in the street as Baba did in the book?

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    1. Daylon,

      No I don't because in most cases those people had little to do with the violence that occurs in Afghanistan. Wars are generally fought because of political reasons (war has been called an extension of politics, it occurs when you can't get your way through diplomatic methods) so one should not look to the population as the cause. They are often caught between a rock and a hard place and it disrupts their lives.

      The Russians were almost as brutal as the British to the Afghan, that is why Baba felt the way he did. They turned his life upside down.

      Rob

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  46. I think Baba is trying to make the best of what they had so he was celebrating before he would die.

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  47. Hi Rob, thank you for taking time to respond to our blogs. Your the man.

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  48. Rob,
    Thank you for answering my questions. Your answers are very insightful and I look forward to our class blogging more with you.

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  49. In the two chapters Amir finally talks to Soroya and marries her. Baba turns over a rack in a gas statoin and is kicked out. The big question I have is why did the author make Baba seem like an honorable man then make him seem like a lunatic.

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  50. Their was a lot of conversation about the differences in living conditions for America contrasting to Afghanistan. I would like to say my input on that topic. People mostly work to survive in poor areas of the world including some parts of Kabul creating it easy to go above and beyond everyone else as Baba did. In America however everyone is trying to live that "American dream" which in some eyes is getting rich and famous. It is harder to compete here in America then it was in Kabul. This is the chapter where Amir and Sahora get married. This is a huge step I think in Amir's life because there has never really been a women in his life or in the book at least. Always just him, Baba, Hassan, and Alí. How will this women change the way he lives? Will it be a good or bad thing? An important quote I would like to share is the first sentence of the two chapters, "Baba loved the idea of America". The reason why I like this quote is that it shows that he loved the idea but maybe not America as the way it was at that time.

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  51. What got me thinking in these two chapters is Amir talking to Soroya and marring her. This had me thinking how did Amir know that Soroya was the one for him so quick? Usually it takes time to know that you want to marry somebody, it isn't something that comes by snapping your fingers. Also after reading Kevin's comment on how Soroya is the first women to ever be in Amir's life and I never really thought about that and it also makes me wonder if Soroya coming into Amir's life is a good thing or a bad thing?

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