Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Grapes of Wrath Week 2: It's not Tuesday?

**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 read what everyone else wrote look at everyone's GIFs.

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


  1. " Careful, Steinbeck. Your Communist is showing." Right? Right. Sigh.

    Also JLAW GIF. Also I had to re-read 'back hair' like three times. Seriously, Steinbeck? That was the best way you could think to phrase that?

  2. I STILL don't know what he was actually trying to say there. When is back hair ever anything but exactly what it sounds like it is, and why is Mae so furry?

  3. It's just the back of her head. She made sure the back of her head didn't have flyaways. Steinbeeeeeck.

  4. Mr. Fairlie would say, what has that to do with her bosoms?

  5. I'M NOT DRAWING DIAGRAMS. But if you raise up your arm to pat the hair at the back of your head, your boobs lift. I just did it like twice in reception to test this and now I look like a weirdo.

  6. It was me, it was! Only I got it from a lecturer lady and I'm still just like... Ok, sure, whatever!


    And, aw, Rosasharn going to lie down with Granma. I sure hope *that* won't hurt the baby... (seriously, that bugs me waaaaay more than the socialismyness.

  7. Ah, chapter 13, you wreck me.

    Also, I'd think smiling with all one's might could be a bit unnerving to behold. Kind of grimacey.

    EXCELLENT GIFS, M'LADY. JLaw's face, it is the most expressive.

  8. OHHHHHH...I get it now. Looks like I really need to read "How to Be a Woman."

  9. I KNEW it was you! And that JGL GIF was totally for you...and for me. It was for both of us.

    I almost talked about Rosasharn's supreme idiocy related to baby things, but then she did the Granma thing and made me want to go easy on her.

  10. At the very least, you might strain a few facial muscles from smiling too hard. And nobody wants that.

  11. That was the best back and forth. Alice, PLEASE provide a diagram! I think everyone could benefit.

  12. Oh man, JGL AND JLAW gifs. Amazing.

    Ma threatening to bust heads to keep the family together, the best. Steinbeck, could you just stop with the awfulness so things can be nice for Ma. BECAUSE SHE DESERVES IT THE MOST.

  13. Haha "back hair". Maybe he didn't have any women near by at the time to ask them for another way to word back hair.

    Ugh - chapter 18 is the LONGEST chapter EVER. Not that it's a *bad* chapter, I just like short chapters. Feels like I'm making progress. Good luck with that.

  14. They should get married, those two. They could make silly faces together for eternity. Alert the media!

    I just started Chapter 18, and I'm CONCERNED. Bad things are coming.

  15. I would SO MUCH rather read a book filled with a million tiny chapters than a few giant ones. Unless every chapter ends with a cliffhanger...because that stresses me out a little.

  16. Yes! Thank you. Shorter chapters for the win!

  17. (Late in commenting but) AHAHAHAHAHA. This fills me with joy.

  18. Dude, your GIFage is excellent this week. I think I stared at the JGL one for longer than is socially acceptable.

    Ma threatening everyone with the metal stick (what was it called?) was pretty badass. I'm hoping that Ma continues to be the heroine of the book, as I don't love any of the menfolk. (And I kind of hate Tom so far.)

  19. RIGHT? The menfolk are SO unimpressive.

    And I've been staring at that JGL GIF since good luck to you.

  20. I was so behind reading everyone's posts that I gave up on commenting. NEXT WEEK WILL BE BETTER.