“Things seldom end in one event.”
- Here was have Jackie putting together moments that would not have seem directlylinked at the time. However, by constructing this passage of his life into a narrative (astory) he is able to draw connections between disconnected moments to help give themsignificance.
“I think we both believed we were in a fog we couldn’t see through yet, though in a while, maybenot even a long while, we would see the lights and know something.”
“And in any event, I know now that the whole truth of anything is an idea that stops existing finally.”
- This is a very potent quote
that expresses Jackie’s understanding of the potential lackof universal meaning that surrounds modern existence. It’s the notion that there is no
truth that’s important, no universal truth. It’s by telling the story that Jackie is able
to come to this realisation.
“I thought to myself that my life had turned suddenly, and that I might not know exactly how or which way for possibly a long time. Maybe, in fact, I might never know.”
The Problem of Knowledge / The Limits of Certainty
(Look at how ma
ny times the word “know/knew” and “seems/seemed” comes up, as well asobserving how Jackie often uses the phrasing “I thought”, suggesting an attempt to know, but a
knowledge that that ability to know is limited.)
“He liked The Mermaid, and my mother –
as far as I knew
didn’t mind it if he went there.”
(Jack Russell talking about Jackie’s mum and her idea that no one dies of a broken heart) “Wewere living down in Texas and we’d had some big blow
up, and that was the idea she had. I don’tknow why.”
did not answer him, but what I thought was that my father knew nothing about farming, and if was right it would be an accident. He knew about planes and hunting game, and that seemed all
(On first meeting Woody) “He did not seem afraid of anything.”
“I could smell the irrigation ditch, hear it hiss in the field…It was nothing Woody knew about,nothing he could hear or smell. He knew nothing about anything that was here.”
This one’s interesting in a different way because it points to how our way o
f seeing theworld is unique, because we each have a unique persective and knowledge of the
world. Jackie can know these sounds and smells because he’s lived them, while Woodycan’t. This is what fundamentally separates humans from each other, this idea th
everyone’s knowledge of the world is different and so we can never share perspectives.
“I wondered what Woody knew that I didn’t. Not about my mother –
I didn’t know anything aboutthat and didn’t want to.”
“He and I were not so far apart in age, I kn
ew that. But Woody was one thing, and I was another.
And I wondered how I would ever get to be like him, since it didn’t necessarily seem so bad a thingto be.”
- points out the irreconcilable difference between one person and another. As much aswe want to know what it is to be someone else, we never can. As a consequence, howcan we ever connect to other human beings if we are always already disconnected fromthem?