my essay finally completed..... and edited... tell me what you think!

<p>Ive posted this essay before. But I finally completed it and edited it... and its been sent to Stanford EA. But if anyone has any suggestions: </p>

<p>“Wang Yu, guo lai, ni de qi yi ge ming zi!” my aunt screamed at me from two rooms over.
My time had arrived. I ran into the room where everyone was waiting.
All of a sudden, the room erupted in cacophony. Mandarin Chinese and heavily accented English filled the room. After twenty minutes of this madness, I heard that my cousins had chosen Kathy and William as their new American identities.
I stood there, too young to be wondering if I was going to assume a similar identity. Instead, like every other six year old, I was thinking about cartoons. G.I. Joe, Tom and Jerry, and many generic Chinese cartoons were at the top of my head. However, instead of asking for Tom, Jerry, or Joe, I asked for my favorite cartoon character, Rai ke, which was the American name Rick with a heavy Chinese accent. My auntie opened the English dictionary and searched for “Rai ke.” Not surprisingly, that was not to be found. So, she started to look through the dictionary, searching for similar-sounding names.
After using the Chinese Ping Yin spelling and much searching through the dictionary for something with a “ke” or a similar ending, my auntie read the name “Lake.” Since I was only six, I immediately became attracted to anything that was remotely related to what I wanted. My auntie, tired of looking through the dictionary, asked me if I would like to take “Lake.” I was thrilled to be named “Lake”. It was only a day later that I found the meaning of lake: “a body of water, bigger than a pond, smaller than a sea.”
On my first day of school, I realized that perhaps I should have made a different decision. Not only was I unable to speak English, but I was also named after a very large puddle of water. Remarks like “Lake Tahoe” or “River” or questions like “Is your brother or sister called River?” filled my elementary and middle school years. I felt so ashamed of who I was that for several years during middle school, I even thought about changing my name. I wanted to be able to speak perfect English, celebrate Christmas under a glowing tree, eat bagels for lunch and have a typical American name; essentially, I wanted to be American.
As I grew older, I began to enjoy the way people often couldn’t figure out what to expect from me. Perhaps it was also because I learned to enjoy my own unique culture more, that I felt like I no longer needed to assimilate into the masses. For the first time in my life, I enjoyed eating “long-life” noodles, wearing red underwear on my birthdays, and having random good luck charms in my house. I found that I was no longer ashamed of these things as I had been before. I started to look at things not only from the perspective of an American, but as a Chinese and an immigrant as well. I have to thank “Lake” for much of this realization. “Lake” allowed me to keep my own unique identity by preventing me from simply assimilating into American society, where I might have lost my self-identity. When all is said and done, I will eventually forget the jokes and alienation that “Lake” had brought me when I was a child, but I will never forget the way “Lake” has kept my identity as an immigrant and most importantly, as a Chinese-American.</p>

<p>Nice job. Your personality and experience comes through nicely. Do you know about the movie actor River Phoenix? And some years ago, there was a male law student at Harvard from Vermont, a Caucasian, whose given name was Bright Yellow or Yellow Bright.</p>

<p>thanks = ). Nope ive never heard of River Phoenix or Bright Yellow.. although I would like to meet this River Phoenix character... we can be brothers! River and Lake. Wow.</p>

<p>River Phoenix was a gifted actor who died from a drug overdose</p>

<p>oh. ouch. i guess no meeting River... = (.</p>

<p>I enjoyed your essay. Well done! Back in high school I knew a family whose children were named: Dusty (boy), Rocky (boy), and Sandy (girl). I like your name.</p>

<p>have you read, "The Woman Warrior," by Maxine Hong Kingston?</p>

<p>over30 - thanks! any suggestions on how to make it better for my regular decision colleges? (HYPM,UCs,Columbia,Penn(wharton))
EncomiumII- I think so.... but im pretty sure it was in 7th grade and i cant really remember what it was about.</p>

<p>It's about being Chinese-American; it reminded me a LOT of your essay, it's so unbelievable.</p>

<p>so.. thats kinda good right?</p>

<p>I like your essay a lot! Not only do I like it (as an essay) but I enjoyed reading it. Since you asked for suggestions, there were just a few words that I stumbled, or paused over. I will give you the words and leave it to you to decide if you want to find a better way to express yourself. In most cases I just got a slight feeling that you were writing for someone else rather than yourself. Otherwise I really got the feeling it was "YOU". That's why these words stand out:
1. essentially (possibly omit this word, reads well with no substitution)
2. assimilate (maybe just me - I don't like this word!)
3. unique (to describe culture - unnecessary?)
4. persepective (eyes?)
5. realization.... am I being too picky?
6. assimilating (again!)
7. unique again.... your identity can only be unique!
8. "when all is said and done" <=== too much is said and not enough is done! I am sure you can do better than that!</p>

<p>Hope I am not too nit-picky. I enjoyed it even more on the 2nd read. It is very good as-is, but I think you can craft it into a really excellent piece, maybe submit it to the New York Times mag! (not that I would know) :)</p>

<p>NJres - thank you very much! I'm going to go back and probably re-do some of these phrases that you suggested or try to do a better rephrasing. I know that some of my words are pretty... weird and can make my essay a little awkward. But ill definitely go back and take a look at it before sending it off to other schools. thanks so much!</p>

<p>2nd opinions on my comments? Pls don't rely on mine alone!!! :)</p>

<p>it seems people just read but dont comment = (</p>

<p>Change "self-identity" to just "identity".</p>

<p>"When all is said and done, I will eventually forget the jokes and alienation that “Lake” had brought me when I was a child, but I will never forget the way “Lake” has kept my identity as an immigrant and most importantly, as a Chinese-American."</p>

<p>Could be changed to:
"When all is said and done, I will eventually forget the jokes and alienation that "Lake" has brought me when I was a child, but I will never forget the way the name has helped me maintain my identity as a Chinese-American".</p>

<p>Or the sentence could be changed to (so that you don't use the word 'identity' again and again):
"When all is said and done, I will eventually forget the jokes and alienation that "Lake" has brought me when I was a child, but I will never forget the way the name has helped me remain distinctly Chinese-American".</p>