**DISCLAIMER: Readalong post, spoilers . . . you know the drill.**
Since I'm still not QUITE finished with this week's reading and it is, in fact, Wednesday right now, I'm a'gonna blurt out some thoughts so I can do what I really want to do, which is
Chapter 12: Someone (I think Laura?) said something smart about the book being full of biblical references, and here one is!
"66 is the path of a people in flight, refugees from dust and shrinking land, from the thunder of tractors and shrinking ownership, from the desert's slow northward invasion, from the twisting winds that howl up out of Texas, from the floods that bring no richness to the land and steal what little richness is there." (p. 128)Correct me if I'm wrong, but this is most probably an "exodus from Egypt" comparison. And THEN there's that whole tedious paragraph about all the cities 66 runs through, and that reminded me of biblical genealogies (this guy begat this guy who begat that guy).
Chapter 13: There are ladyfolk sitting in the front seat now. I don't understand why that's suddenly allowed, but I'll TAKE it. Also, Steinbeck killed a dog and Grampa in the same chapter, but neither of those things hit me as hard as this:
"On her mattress, away from the fire, Granma whimpered softly like a puppy. The heads of all turned in her direction.
Ma said, 'Rosasharn, like a good girl go lay down with Granma. She needs somebody now. She's knowin', now.'
Rose of Sharon got to her feet and walked to the mattress and lay beside the old woman, and the murmur of their soft voices drifted to the fire. Rose of Sharon and Granma whispered together on the mattress." (p. 159)Chapter 14: "For the quality of owning freezes you forever into 'I,' and cuts you off forever from the 'we'" (p. 166). Careful, Steinbeck. Your Communist is showing.
Chapter 15: "Mae really smiles with all her might at truck drivers. She bridles a little, fixes her back hair so that her breasts will lift with her raised arms, passes the time of day and indicates great things, great times, great jokes" (p. 167). You lost me at "back hair."
Chapter 16: Someone mentions splitting up the group, and Ma brandishes a jack handle and sasses the men into submission. You NEVER split the party, and you never mess with a woman wielding a metal rod. Some truths are universal.
Chapters 17 and 18