Monday, August 3, 2009

Page 12, Paragraphs 2 - 5; Notes

Curiouser and curiouser.

***

Page 12, Paragraph 2:

The men look at one another, and now Little-Dick bends over to grab a spear. "Here's something", he says. "How'd you like this in your belly?" The other man picks up a stone, which he throws hard at me. The stone hits my leg, and the edge of it tears the skin below my knee and it starts bleeding. I make a noise and fall down; my leg hurts really bad. The man picks up another stone and says, "Go away, Shit-Ass. I don't want to smell you around here anymore". The man with the big belly lifts up his spear to throw it at me.

Paragraph 3:

Now I stand up with pain in my leg and walk awkwardly down the hill like a sick dog. Behind me, the man throws his other stone but misses me, with the stone falling quietly on the grass. I walk as quickly as I can and don't look back, and that's it - that's the whole story of my time with the settlers.

Paragraph 4:

I walk on slowly, dragging my foot behind me. When nightfall comes, I find a pear* tree. The pears are still hard, and I can only eat a little bit of them. I look at the injury on my leg and see that the blood is dried with grey dirt and shit, and that it's stopped bleeding; that's good. I lie by the tree and shut my eyes so that nothing can see me.** I think of nothing.

Paragraph 5:

Sunrise comes - time to walk. My leg's now healed enough to walk on but it still has a prickling pain in it. I walk on and on, and now around noon I come to a bunch of white wood trees around a circle of grass. Standing out from the grass is a big old stone with markings that look like worms and spiders scratched on it.*** I shut my eyes and am so scared I can't breathe.

*Sorry, but this is the best I can do with "titty-apple", although I did find this while searching the net; it seems to be the solution until you find out it only grows in the tropics. : /

**This seems to indicate an inability to grasp the concept of object permanence, which gives you a pretty good indication of where our narrator's at developmentally.

***I read this and immediately thought of that part of TARZAN OF THE APES where Burroughs talks about letters looking like "little bugs" I wonder if Moore didn't put that in here as a sort of hommage?

4 comments:

  1. * "Pears" was the best I could do as well.

    ** I've seen children and cats 'disappear' everyone else by closing or covering their eyes. I'm also reminded of something I read about the early days of television: actors would get letters saying "OK, I'm back from my vacation, you can start doing the show again". People had no context for interacting with this new technology and assumed the people they saw were just waiting around for viewers to watch them.

    *** I didn't get the 'little bugs' thing, but I have traveled to places where people didn't know what writing was. I was way off the beaten track and the first children who saw me literally pissed with fear, until an old man told them I was just a white man and not a ghost; apparently he'd been telling them for years about the time he travelled to the towns and saw white people, but nobody believed him. I tried drawing a map to find out where a certain river was, and they kept pushing it away and covering it up, refusing to look at it. They thought I was crazy, talking about places 'out there' while pointing at markings on a piece of paper... they knew the places weren't really in the piece of paper, and thought maybe I was trying to trick them. I often wonder what they saw when they looked at the markings... reading what Moore wrote (theres more in later chapters) put a chill up my spine.

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  2. Hey, Benny. Nice to see you back, as always.

    "I'm also reminded of something I read about the early days of television: actors would get letters saying "OK, I'm back from my vacation, you can start doing the show again". People had no context for interacting with this new technology and assumed the people they saw were just waiting around for viewers to watch them."

    That's a great story. When you were a kid, did you ever do the thing where you hid under the covers so that the monster from the closet couldn't get you? That's what that part reminded me of.

    "I have traveled to places where people didn't know what writing was. I was way off the beaten track and the first children who saw me literally pissed with fear, until an old man told them I was just a white man and not a ghost; apparently he'd been telling them for years about the time he travelled to the towns and saw white people, but nobody believed him. I tried drawing a map to find out where a certain river was, and they kept pushing it away and covering it up, refusing to look at it. They thought I was crazy, talking about places 'out there' while pointing at markings on a piece of paper... they knew the places weren't really in the piece of paper, and thought maybe I was trying to trick them. I often wonder what they saw when they looked at the markings"

    That's really interesting. It's always fascinating to see how pre-literate/pre-technological (what we would consider pre-technological, anyway) react to us and things that are commonplace to us. I'll always remember an account I read years ago of explorers who found a remote Pacific island populated by folks who had never been exposed to anyone from modern Western society before - the explorers apparently had a old wind-up phonograph with them & put on a recording of a Beethoven symphony or something - the islanders apparently just about literaly lost their minds & started pulling their hair out, banging their heads on the ground, etc. - they were so freaked out by the music coming out of this strange little box that they just couldn't handle it!

    BTW - how did you find out about this site, if you don't mind me asking?

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  3. I searched for 'Urk-kine' and you were pretty much the only hit that came up.

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  4. Thanks - I was curious about that.

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