It was a chilling morning in northwestern Kansas. A man, his wife and two children (boy and girl) returned to their home since it was showering and they decided to stay indoors. Additionally, life was not easy at the plains and many families relocated to other regions. As the man moved around his house, he noted that from a distance a small partition of fog and transparent cloud rotating and suddenly vanished. Also, it was coming towards their house. Suddenly, ferocious hail storm hit the house and the area around the house looked as if it was snowing.
The man feared for the safety of his family; so he decided to read an old newspaper. The man became occupied such that he did not notice when the storm was approaching. The winds were blowing at about 200 miles per hour and the created pressure of about fifteen tons on the side of the house. Suddenly, he noticed that rain water beneath his feet. He grabbed some sheets and tried to cover the spaces on the door of his house. The rain shingled the roof as well as threatened to break the entrance. They all decided to stay in their dining room.
The man became worried and stood at the window and he tried to wipe the windowpane that was clouded with moisture (Sebastian 259). It was raining so heavily such that it was difficult to view of far-off cabins. The lighting stuck and filled the house with blinding glare. This forced the children to stay close to the mother. The man tried to calm down his family but it was all in vain since the electricity went off a several times. After five hours, the house was filled with water. The family found a secured high place and they had nothing to cover themselves. It rained for five days and the water levels in the house reduced after three days. They were all unconscious but they were helped by good Samaritans.
More than eighteen people died while about one hundred and fifty lost their homes. In addition, the hail stormed damaged police vehicles, trucks as well as ambulance units (The Tornado Project). Most of houses had collapsed while car windows were shattered.
Men and Cartoons by Jonathan Lethem contain nine short stories and the writer a lot of fictional words. The stories do not reflect the title of the book. “The Spray” is about man and woman who found a chemical compound, if sprayed it could expose things that had got lost (Mark). Someone had broken into the couple’s house and took the fax machine, the television and other things. The couple called the police. Four police officers and a dog visited the crime scene. They debriefed the couple and brought out a small canister and sprayed around the house. Before spraying, they masked their dog. The police officers explained to the couple as to why they were spraying the house; that is they were making “lost things visible” (Jonathan 48).After the spray settled, some spots in the house started glowing; this indicated what the burglar had stolen. It was noted that jewelry box, camera, walkman and pair of cull links were missing. Although the missing things were visible, one of the police officers explained to the couple that the things could not be touched since they were no longer there. The police officers accidentally forgot the canister and Addie took it. Addie sprayed Lucinda. An image of Lucinda was formed; it had short hair, the head laid on Charles’ shoulder. Lucinda and Charles wrestled for the spray and it went off. After the spray settled, images of Addie and Lucinda were formed. The story below borrows characters from Men and Cartoons.
Lucinda keeps her halo on the side of the bed. Addie is able to see the glowing arch of the halo when sleeping. The curtains are white they hang down to the floor; so it swishes softy in the gentle wind. Addie and Lucinda do not live on the beach, but they are close to it. When Addie wakes up, he likes watching Lucinda stretch her arms and yawn. Sometimes Lucinda hugs her shoulders and sits like a cat on her thighs while the hands are in front.
Addie pretends for some time that he is asleep as Lucinda enjoys the sunlight as well as the breeze and wriggles her shoulders. Afterwards, Lucinda fits the halo on her head and rises from the bed. Once Lucinda’s toes touch the floor, she sways like she weighs nothing while Addie looks at her (Jonas).
Lucinda kneels at the window and the birds continue to sing as combs her hair. Lucinda strokes a hundred times on side and does the same to the other side. Addie watches her falls into late morning dreams and he snaps out of it. Afterwards, Lucinda starts singing while eating a grapefruit. Addie decides get of the bed and Lucinda leans on the bed and greets him (Jonas).
They both have breakfast and fold clean clothes together. Addie starts to think why he has good things; for instance, he asks himself why deserves Lucinda. Lucinda freshens up and leaves for; she later kisses Addie goodbye. Addie decides to get out of the house since he is jobless. Addie looks for his pants in the laundry hamper and later goes to look for job (Jonas).
Addie decides to hang out with Samuel and Naomi. He takes few beers with them. Addie and Samuel sit on a sofa and start staring at the people moving and later Naomi joins them (Jonas).
Samuel and Naomi “are sharing a root beer float, off by the dining area. They’re not bad people. They love each other, I’m sure. Maybe people like them have a bad rap, or maybe they were just born into a bad situation” (Jonas). It is not Samuel and Naomi’s fault, and at least those Addie and Lucinda have someone to love. The music is loud enough that there is no need to talk. There is hissing sound of people skating which reminds Addie of the ocean’s wave. Someone could think that the “maze of green plastic stars above” them is the real (Jonas). Outside where they were sitting, the stars were shining while the people were shuffling to their flatcars in little small close groups and there seemed to be loneliness. Addie asks Lucinda, “What happens if you lose your wings?” Lucinda sighs and says she cannot fly (Jonas).
Afterwards, the music is changed. There skating noises as couples are skating together and some of them leave the floor while others hold each close. Lucinda extends her arms around Addie, Samuel and Naomi and they all glare at the light. The light of the colors keep on changing slowly and it seems as if they are not changing at all; the light flows across their face, lighting their cheeks and brushing through their hair. Lucinda watches Addie with her golden eyes as if they were alone. Addie takes Lucinda’s hands in and leans away. Lucinda follows Addie and they spin together below the cover of Lucinda’s arms.
Addie wants to ask Lucinda why he deserves to have her love. Addie wants to find out what Lucinda thinks about their world “that makes it worth being” where they are (Jonas). Although it seems to be simple, Lucinda finds hard to explain. According to Addie, their world should be cheaper knock-off to Lucinda. This because the love Addie has for Lucinda can give her must just be a “shadow of what she knew” before they met together (Jonas).
The Nick Adams Stories by Ernest Hemingway has five sections. The Big Two-Hearted River can be found in the soldier home section (Ernest 47). The story focuses Nick Adams’ healing process after World War I.
Based on the story above story, Adam jailed for forty years because of drug trafficking and child abuse. The day he is released there is no person to pick him. Adam walks sixty miles from the prison and later decides to walk across the field of corn to reach the nearby town. Adam was lucky to find a stream of water and abandoned house. He freshened up and looked for something to eat.
Afterwards, he moved along the stream and to find place to camp. There was no person that Adam could talk to; so he could spend most of the time thinking. In order to avoid thinking, Adam distracted himself by doing something constructive like weeding around his camp and trying to learn more about nature. When Adams went to bed, he tried to recall about his family as well as the close friends he had before he was imprisoned. At times he used to curse himself and tried to think of the good things that he did to people. In addition, before he went to bed, he always hoped that he would find someone to befriend. Every action meant that Adam was fragile and he could breakdown any time; he became frustrated Adams’ reaction after his first fish. Adams calmed himself down going to the shore and smoking a cigarette.
Every morning Adams would wake up and start fishing. After taking breakfast, he will go to the forest to find bait that is grasshoppers. As Adam interacts with nature e.g. fishing, he condition continues to stabilize. That is Adam no longer focuses on negative things like he was hopeless after the war. He tries to learn more on the environment instead of watching thing go wrong around him. After catching a small fish, he releases it due to the fact that he would catch another big fish. Additionally, if the big fish escapes, Adams decides to catch medium sized fish. As time goes on, Adams loses interest in fishing and he hopes to get a book and read it.
- Ernest, Hemingway. The Nick Adams Stories. Amereon Limited, 1990.
- Jonas, Hurwitz. Simon at the Shore Line. 2011. 1 September 2011 <https://www.eastoftheweb.com/short-stories/UBooks/SimoShor883.shtml>.
- Jonathan, Lethem. Men and Cartoons. Vintage, 2005.
- Mark, Flanagan. Men and Cartoons. 2011. 1 September 2011 <https://contemporarylit.about.com/od/shortfiction/fr/menAndCartoons.htm>.
- Sebastian, Junger. The Perfect Storm: A True Story of Men Against the Sea. Norton & Company, 2000.
- The Tornado Project. Stories. 1999. 1 September 2010 <https://www.tornadoproject.com/stories/stories.htm>.