Change Speech

Today I am here to talk to you about change, and a few different texts that have challenged my thinking and broadened my understanding of change. Change, we have all experienced it change at one stage of our life, for the better or maybe even for the worse. But change is a normal part of our life’s, and we have to deal with it the best we can. After studying these texts, Raw by Scott Monk, Andrew Denton’s interview with Aron Ralston, and the short storey the Final Game by Olivia Coleman. My understanding of change has broadened and i am now much more aware of people’s experiences and how they have overcome and dealt with change.

Aron Ralston was a young mountaineer. While he was on a mountaineering trip through Blue John Canyon in Utah in April 2003, a boulder crushed his right arm, pinning it against the cliff wall. Aron did not inform anyone of his trip, so he knew that nobody would be searching for him. He spent five days slowly sipping his only small amount of water left, while trying to dislodge his arm. Assuming that he would die, he ran out of water and began to drink his own urine. He video tapped his last goodbyes to his family and friends with a little camcorder he had in his backpack.

Aron, so sure that he would die now, carved his name and date of death into the cliff face. After surviving the fifth day, he decided that there was only one way out of here alive. He was forced to amputate his own arm. Using the chalkstone as a vice he managed to snap both bones in his arm. Then using a dull two dollar pocket knife he began to slice through the skin in his arm. Using a pair of pliers to twist and snap his tendon, it was a miracle he didn’t pass out from the pain and blood loss. Once free Aron had to make a 65foot rappel down a sheer drop, then hike seven miles out of the canyon in the hot midday sun to reach his car.

After surviving all those odds, he was told he had a bone infection and only had a fifty – fifty percent chance to live. Luckily Aron survived the infection and made a full recovery and lives on with a prosthetic arm. Aron has gone on to design many attachments for not only his arm, but other handicapped people as well. ‘Between a Rock and a hard place’ was the book that Aron published to tell his story and share his experience with others. Aron has shown us that a extremely negative situation can change your life for the positive, and it has certainly changed his life.

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We see this during his interview on the show Enough Rope with Andrew Denton that his personality has changed; he has a greater sense of patience and has come to appreciate his friends and family more. Even with just one arm Aron says that he has a greater ability to tackle everyday situations and problems, because he knows that he can overcome anything that life throws at him. In another text Raw by Scott Monk, shows us that different people relate to change in different ways. Two characters in particular, Brett Dalton and Josh Collins.

Josh is a young man that is open to change and we see this when he says “Sam doesn’t order me to do anything, He’s my friend, I live on his farm, I do what he says”. Sam is the owner of The Farm, and institute were troubled boys go to seek help in straightening out there life. Brett was sent to The Farm after committing several crimes against the law. There’s one problem though, Brett doesn’t want anything to do with The Farm, he doesn’t want to do what he’s told, he doesn’t care what anyone thinks, and he just doesn’t want to change. To make things worse he feels trapped and alienated from the other boys, and doesn’t fit in.

Sam, the owner of the farm, puts up with Brett’s ‘shit’ for as long as he can. He knows that he can change Brett, and won’t give up until he does. Fortunately for Brett, the farm slowly changes his personality to a more positive and caring young man. He begins to fit in with most of the boys, but there will always be one or two that don’t like the way he acts. After some time on the farm Brett seemed to have turned his life around. But it was no happy ending for Brett, as the cops found him after someone dobbed him in for trespassing. Brett was going back to a jail thinking that all this was just a waste of time, but it wasn’t.

He still had his friends that he’s made, and the lessons that he had learned along the way. Brett was given the chance to start again, a fresh start to do things right from the beginning. He had changed his own life, something he thought he could never do. Change doesn’t always have to be a positive thing, as shown in the short story by Olivia Coleman called The Final Game. The Final Game is a story about a young man that has a love for football and is very good at it. He is only ever referred to as ‘He’. The author has used this technique to show that ‘he’ can refer to any young man his age.

Although he is extremely good at what he does, a serious knee injury is holding him back. Finding it hard to make friends and get selected for the top footy teams, he always things quite negatively about himself. To make things worse, he has a dream to one day couch a footy team, but his parents are only holding him back from this dream. We see this when his dad says “sorry mate we can’t afford it, you’re stuck here” and “that’s for wankers, decent blokes stay on the land”. This only creates more negative feelings within him. Until one night he couldn’t take it anymore and took off in his dads Ute.

Speeding down the dark road, he lost control of the vehicle. He found himself dangling upside down from the seatbelt, he could feel his legs, and at that moment he realised that his life had changed forever. These three texts have challenged my thinking and broadened my understanding of change. They each show change from a different perspective. From Aron Ralston retelling his story of survival to “The Final Game” which showed that change might not always turn out positive. I hoped that you all learnt something from these texts, because I sure have. And I hoped you enjoyed my speech on change.

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