On Page 258 Day 2 16:01 Tom tells a story that I think speaks volumes about the adventure into the house. As we are informed previously, Tom is the brother who can be called “flighty” when we look at the biblical comparison to Esau and his brother I could do nothing more than to laugh. In my opinion Tom can not be compared to any one of the brothers. This flighty ness is paralleled with something else though, and for this blog I will attempt to articulate my thoughts of him, jumbled as they may be, in reference to the entire “discovery mission”
Although I do feel sorry for Tom in a way, I mostly just find his life funny. He smokes pot, makes corny Sunday School jokes, eats himself senseless, does disgusting thing like “shit in the monster’s corner” and all the while keep a certain humor about himself. Then all of a sudden he gives us the “parable” about the rich man trying to do something good. Who is he to teach us a lession?
All the characters in this book are longing for some sense of fulfillment. Traunt presently gets satisfaction for putting Zampano’s “lost” book in order. Karen drivers herself sick with worry about Navidson, and distracts herself with fung-seu and childrearing. Will participates in this absurd journey, and Tom tries to fit himself into his brothers life by assuming the position of the child in the relationship between Karen and Will. Though these objectives are strange and seemingly unconnected, I think that the deeper meaning is that they want to do “something good” with maybe themselves, society, or whatever and whomever they think they might owe something to.
This rich man comes off the an ass hole because his way of “doo-gooding” is senseless, and ultimately leads to the demise of this poor man, who until he messed with him was surviving reasonably fine. Maybe this connection can be mad with all these characters trying to make sense of their complication, and ultimately will only result in their demise, or unhappiness. As Karen threatened to do, when she said that she was leaving and taking the kids with her. These characters are trying to change the direction or eliminate their misfortunes and are just ultimately making their lives worse.
Another example of this is Johnny’s encounter with the big tit, too much eye liner, alleged porn star at the Opium Den. When they arrived at his house, he took pitty on her, and didn’t ask her to come him. It was my assumption that despite what he said about something being “wrong” about her, he felt like he was doing her a favor by not treating her cheaply. As we later see, she drives off and throws the poor dog out of the car window. Who is to know the fortune of that poor dog, if he had just asked her to come in, and had sex with her, as was the pattern of his life. If these people all have underlining motives of their own, wouldn’t it be considered selfish of them to think that they deserve more than the hell that they all live in, and shouldn’t they be punished for their______( I can’t think of the word..but hopefully you understand what I am trying to say) Tom is currently the only who brings this concept to light. He know people try to do good but he also recognizes the bad that can come of it. ( very funny to me)
Anyway, this passage to me is foreshadowing the fate of the characters. It says that they will all ultimately be doomed, because they are trying too hard to escape life.