1 Unit 6 The Man in the Water 2 About the Author Roger Rosenblatt Professor of English Professor of Writing AB New York University Ph.D Harvard University 3 About the Author
Roger Rosenblatt is a journalist author playwright and professor. As an essayist for Time magazine he has won two George Polk Awards and awards from the Overseas Press Club and the American Bar Association among others. His television essays for the MacNeil/Lehrer NewsHour have won him a George Foster Peabody Award and an Emmy. He is also the author of six books.
4 About the Air Crash One of the worst snowstorms in the history of Washington D.C. hit the city 20 years ago on Jan. 13 1982. Just about everything closed down the government businesses schools the airports. By about noon the skies cleared and Washingtons National Airport reopened for business. The crew of Air Florida Flight 90 began preparing for a nonstop trip to sunny Fort Lauderdale Florida. At 359 p.m. the twin-engine Boeing 737 was cleared for takeoff and began rumbling down the runway on its final flight. 5 About the Air Crash Minutes later the plane smashed into the 14th Street Bridge only 1200 yards from the Pentagon destroying four automobiles and killing five people. The jet then fell into the ice-covered Potomac River bringing all the passengers to their instant death except five four passengers and one flight attendant from the tail section who found themselves gasping and struggling in the icy water. 6 About the Air Crash These five people however survived and they were able to survive because of four heroes. The author wrote this essay in praise of these heroes three of whom had risked their lives to rescue the survivors and were able to live to tell the story but the man that really held the whole nations attention was the fourth one who had kept pushing his lifeline and flotation rings to others until he went under. 7 Moments After the Crash At 359 the plane shuddered as it took off and tried to gain altitude. It cleared two of the bridges on the Potomic River but was losing altitude. The crew and passengers knew they were in trouble before it struck the 14th Street Bridge and it tore in half as it slammed through cars and railing ()then plunged into the cold icy dark waters. 8 Moments After the Crash Moments later only the tail section remained afloat 79 people were aboard Flight 90 six were to survive the crash but only five would live. Huddled together in the cold icy watersthe survivors waited for the rescue helicopter to arrive. Treading ()water the survivors held on some with broken arms and legs two with collapsed lungs caused from the impact. Were all going to die someone said 9 Moments After the Crash Aboard Flight 90 was Arland K. Williams Jr. who always sat in the tail section of the plane the safest part of the plane he said. Not long before Williams had just discussed his marriage with the woman he loved I think were going to marry soon. 10 Moments After the Crash It was 420 before the helicopter arrived at the scene dropping the first lifeline delivering Bert Hamilton 100 yards to shore. It would be ten minutes before the helicopter returned dropping the line to Williams. He caught it but instead of wrapping it around himself he passed the line to flight attendant Kelly Duncan the only crew member to survive. She took the line wrapped it under her arms and held tight as she was carried to shore. 11 Moments After the Crash With room for only one helicopter at a time between bridges it returned with two lifelines and again Williams caught it and handed it off to yet another survivor Joe Stiley the most seriously injured passenger. 12 Moments After the Crash Tirado who also clung to Stiley and her life line however exhausted in pain and shock soon lost her grip and plunged back into the cold icy waters of the Potomac. Rescuers again tossed her a life line but she was unable to grasp it to save her own life. Upon seeing this and as Tirado was about to go under an onlooker Lenny Skutnik plunged from the banks of the river into the freezing water and brought her safely to shore. 13 Moments After the Crash By 430 p.m Williams had been in the freezing water for 29 minutes and his turn had finally come. The helicopter turned once more toward the sinking tail its two-man crew eager to meet the man in the water to tell him they had never seen such selfless courage. 14 Moments After the Crash They strained ()for signs of the hero of Flight 90. But the balding man was gone. He could have gone on the first trip pilot Usher wept but he put everyone else ahead of himself. Everyone. Why Why did he do this What did he do this for 15 Comments on the Event The following are a few words his mother Virginia Williams used to describe her son. He was average she said. Just average. Others comment Its people like these that are heroes. Those people who step out of the norm( ) and put their life second in consideration of others in a crisis. For isnt it in times of danger the average man who saves us all 16 Theme of the Text Heroism. Heroism of course has been admired. But this mans heroism was unusual. People usually expect revolutionaries to die martyrs true believers to be willing to die for their faith people ready to lay down their lives in performing their duty even people to show courage in their attempt to win power influence money or to save their loved ones. But the man in the water did not fit any of these descriptions. 17 Theme of the Text Heroism. The man in the water did not have to give his rings to others he did not even know these people. He was extraordinary precisely because he was ordinary. He showed what everyone of us could do. The display of his heroism was a song to the beautiful human character. This is true heroism. 18 Related Information Washington D.C. the city of form and rules Downtown Home 19 Related Information Washington D.C. the city of form and rules Sightseeing Map 20 Related Information Washington D.C. the city of form and rules Metro Map 21 Related Information Presidential Monuments Washington Monument In recognition of his leadership in the cause of American independence Washington earned the title Father of his Country. With this monument the citizens of the United States show their enduring gratitude and respect for the first president in the United States. 22 Related Information Presidential Monuments Jefferson Memorial Thomas Jefferson political philosopher architect musician book collector scientist horticulturist() diplomat inventor and third President of the United States also author of the Declaration of American Independence and Father of the University of Virginia. 23 Related Information Presidential Monuments Lincoln Memorial The Lincoln Memorial is a tribute to President Abraham Lincoln and the nation he fought to preserve during the Civil War (1861-1865). The Lincoln Memorial was built to resemble a Greek temple. It has 36 Doric columns one for each state at the time of Lincolns death. A sculpture by Daniel Chester French of a seated Lincoln is in the center of the memorial chamber. 24 Related Information The Potomac River The Potomac River is often referred to as the Nations River because it flows through the nations capital where the magnificent monuments of the Washington Jefferson and Lincoln memorials are reflected in its waters. It is one of the most beautiful and bountiful rivers on the East Coast and is known for its historic scenic and recreational significance. It begins as a small spring at the Fairfax Stone in West Virginia and winds its way through the mountains and valleys of Appalachia past battlefields and old manufacturing towns. The river flows more than 380 miles and grows to more than 11 miles wide as it reaches the Chesapeake Bay at Point Lookout Maryland. 25 Related Information Ralph Waldo Emerson Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882) is one of the most famous American essayist poets and philosophers. Known as a transcendentalist his main themes are individualism independent thinking self-reliance idealism and the worship of nature. His works include Nature Self-reliance American Scholar Overload and many other essays and poems. 26 Related Information Ralph Waldo Emerson Transcendentalism a philosophy /doctrine that knowledge may be obtained by a study of the mental processes apart from experience. 27 Related Information Ralph Waldo Emerson Quotes from Emerson The sum of wisdom is that time is never lost that is devoted to work. Do your work and you shall reinforce yourself.Good bye proud world! Im going homeThou art not my friend I am not thine. A man is a bundle of relations a knot of roots whose flower and fruitage is the world. 28 Related Information Ralph Waldo Emerson Quotes from Emerson Discontent is the want of self-reliance it is infirmity of will. Every sweet has its sour every evil its good. Everything in Nature contains all the powers of Nature. Everything is made of one hidden stuff. The only reward of virtue is virtue the only way to have a friend is to be one 29 Language Points
1. As disasters go this one was terrible but not unique
asgoes compared with sth. average
As writers go Oscar Wilde was not the most
talented. But he was among the most popular.
As businessmen go he is considered pretty honest.
30 Language Points 2. Washington the city of form and rules turned chaotic by a blast of real winter and a single slap of metal on metal. (para 1)
chaotic adj. in a state of disorder and confusion
The room was in a chaos.
blast strong sudden movement of wind or air
When the window was opened an icy blast came
into the room.
slap strike with the palm of the hand used figuratively here.
31 Language Points 3. And there was the aesthetic clash as well -blue and green Air Florida the name of a flying garden sunk down among gray chunks of ice in a black river. (para 1) aesthetic aesthetics anaesthetic / anesthetic chunk thick solid piece or lump a chunk of meat / ice 32 Language Points
clash V. 1. make a loud broken confused noise (as
when metal objects strike together)
Their swords clashed.
2. meet in conflict
The two armies clashed outside the town.
3. (of events) intefere with each other because
they are to be at the same timeon the same date
Its pity that the two concerts clashed. I want to go to both.
4. be in disagreement with
I clashed with him at the meeting.
The color of the curtain clashes with the of the carpet.
n. the clash of weapons / views / opinions
33 Language Points And there was the aesthetic clash as well -blue and green Air Florida the name of a flying garden sunk down among gray chunks of ice in a black river. (para 1) When the air crash occurred it was not just a clash of metal against the bridge but also a clash between colors the blue-green color of the plane ant the gray and black color of the ice and river. 34 Language Points 4. Last Wednesday the elements indifferent as ever brought down Flight 90. And on that same afternoon human nature groping and struggling rose to the occasion. (para 2)
the elements the forces of nature
be exposed to the fury of the elements
grope feel or search in the dark
grope for the door-handle / light switch
We groped our way in the dark corridor.
35 Language Points
indifferent to having no interest in not caring for
How can you be so indifferent to the sufferings of
rise to the occasion /challenge /task prove oneself able to deal with an unexpected problem a difficult task etc.
Im sure he will rise to the occasion when he realizes
what is at stake. ()
36 Language Points Last Wednesday the elements indifferent as ever brought down Flight 90. And on that same afternoon human nature groping and struggling rose to the occasion. (para. 2) Last Wednesday the bad weather unconcerned about the consequences it might bring about as always made Flight 90 fall down. On that same afternoon human nature groping for the flotation rings and struggling in the icy water came to prove its greatness displayed in an unexpected tragedy. 37 Language Points 5. Of the four acknowledged heroes of the event three ate able to account for their behavior. (para. 3) Only three out of these four heroes lived to tell people what they actually had done and how they rescued the five survivors. 38 Language Points
He refused to that he was defeated.
He having been cheated.
2. express thanks for
We should gifts promptly.
3. indicate that one recognizes sb. by greeting
I passed her in the street but she didnt even me when I smiled.
4. acknowledgement n.
We are sending you a small sum of money in acknowledgement of your help.
39 Language Points
1. give an explanation or reason for
He can account for every penny in his pocket.
Science can now account for many things that
ancient people could not understand.
2. answer for
You will have to account for the misprints in the article.
3. amount to
In that country the production of raw materials account
for a considerable proportion of the national economy.
40 Language Points 6. On television side by side they described their courage as well in the line of duty. (para 3)
line range of activity
His line is banking.
Thats not my line.
in line with in agreement with
Our foreign policy is in line with the interests of
all the people of the world.
(be) in line with (be) out of line with
41 Language Points 7. Skutnik added that somebody had to go into the water delivering every heros line that is no less admirable for being repeated. (para 3) deliver ones line give a remark deliver a speech deliver a lecture Skutnik gave a remark that has been said before by many people in similar situations but it is still admirable. 42 Language Points 8 . In a mass casualty youll find people like him said Windsor. But Ive never seen one with that commitment. (para 4) mass casualty large number of people hurt or killed in an accident or battle We can always find heroic people like him in a mass casualty because although not everyone is a hero theres bound to be a fair representation of heroes in a big crowd. But Ive never seen anyone with such a strong sense of responsibility. 43 Language Points 9 . His selfishness was one reason the story held national attention his anonymity another. (para 4) anonymity n. anonymous adj. an letter an gift We can always find heroic people like him in a mass casualty because although not everyone is a hero theres bound to be a fair representation of heroes in a big crowd. But Ive never seen anyone with such a strong sense of responsibility. 44 Language Points 10. The fact that he went unidentified gave him a universal character. (para 4) The fact that he went unidentified made him a representative man like everyone of us could do. We may feel that it might have been anyone.
45 Language Points 11. For a while he was Everyman and thus proof (as if one needed it) that no one is ordinary.
(para 4) Everyone echoes the title of a medieval play about a typical human being. It conveys the idea that this anonymous man really represents the best of human nature. What he did was not the act of a supernatural being but the act of an ordinary person. Yet 46 Language Points 12. Still he could never have imagined such a capacity in himself. (para. 5) ability capability capacity ability capability ability capacity .
He has the ability to swim like a fish. He has the capability of solving practical problems. The theater has a seating capacity of 300 people. The book is within the reading capacity of young readers. 47 Language Points 13. He was there in the essential classical circumstance. (para 7)
essential basic typical most important classic traditional or long established What happened that day was a typical situation in which nature and man fought each other. And when nature begins to show its power you always find man fight back. He is always there. We can always expect to find such a hero. 48 Language Points 14. So the age-old battle began again in the Potomac. For as long as man could last they went at each other nature and man. (para 7)
the age-old battle between nature and man here refers to the traditional idea that human civilization is a record of mans gradual conquest of nature. go at attack fight
49 Language Points 15. the one making no distinctions of good and evil acting on no principles offering no lifelines the other acting wholly on distinctions principles and perhaps on faith. (para. 7)
Nature is indifferent. It does not have any idea what is good or what is bad for human beings and it does not care. It has no moral principles. Human beings on the other hand are different. They have moral standards. They have feelings. They care and they love. Therefore they are able to choose between right and wrong.
50 Language Points 16. In reality we believe the opposite and it takes the act of the man in the water to remind us o four true feelings in this matter. (para. 8)
Actually the death of the man did not mean that human beings had lost the battle. In a moral sense man had won because mans courage to defy death was also a tremendous power. Therefore what happened to this man in the water should fill us with pride rather than sadness.
51 Language Points 17. The man in the water set himself against an immovable impersonal enemy he fought it with kindness and he held it to a standstill. He was the best we can do.. (para. 9)
set sb. against make sb. start to fight or quarrel with an immovable impersonal enemy refers to nature which is indifferent and cannot be persuaded to change its attitude towards us humans standoff a situation in which neither side in a fight or battle can give an advantage 52 Vocabulary Grammar Exercises B 1. His long service with the company was ____ with a present. A. admitted B. acknowledged C. attributed D. accepted
2. Teaching students of threshold level is hard work but the effort is very ____. A. precious B. rewarding C. worth D. challenging B 53 Vocabulary Grammar Exercises A 3. Among all the changes resulting from the ____ entry of women into the workforce the transformation that has occurred in the women themselves is not the least important.. A. massive B. quantitative C. surplus D. tragic
A 4. Whether their football team will win is a matter of ____ to me. A. indifference B. discrimination C. deviation D. interests
54 Vocabulary Grammar Exercises D 5. The plane ____ its bombs exploding as it hit the ground. A. collided B. crushed C. plunged D. crashed
B 6. The morning news says a school bus ____ with a train at the junction a group of policemen were sent there immediately. A. stumbled B. collided C. crashed D. struck 55 Vocabulary Grammar Exercises A 7. Today the public is much concerned about the way ____. A. nature is being ruined B. which nature is ruined C. on which to ruin nature D. of nature to be ruined
B 8. These surveys indicate that many crimes go ____ by the police mainly because not all victims report them. A. to be unrecorded B. unrecorded C. to have been unrecorded D. unrecording 56 Discussion
1. We find heroes in all societies and cultures and at all times. Who are the greatest heroes in your mind List some of them and account for their deeds.
2. Many people think that heroes are made of special materials but the author seems to suggest that every one of us has the capacity to be a hero. What do you think of this point of view
So much for The Man in the Water 58 Vocabulary Grammar Exercises D 7. The plane ____ its bombs exploding as it hit the ground. A. collided B. crushed C. plunged D. crashed
A 8. The morning news says a school bus ____ with a train at the junction a group of policemen were sent there immediately. A. stumbled B. collided C. crshed D. struck 59 Comments on the Tragedy The following are a few words his mother Virginia Williams used to describe her son. He was average she said. Just average. The authors comment He did not have to give his rings to others he did not even know these people. He was extraordinary precisely because he was ordinary. He showed what everyone of us could do. The display of his heroism was a song to the beautiful human character. 60 Comments on the Tragedy The following are a few words his mother Virginia Williams used to describe her son. He was average she said. Just average. The authors comment He did not have to give his rings to others he did not even know these people. He was extraordinary precisely because he was ordinary. He showed what everyone of us could do. The display of his heroism was a song to the beautiful human character.
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