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Friday, July 16, 2010

"The Old Man and the Sea"

by Ernest Hemingway, 1952, 140p, rating=4.5

A classic novella that contains many symbolism that can be and I'm sure have been scrutinized, however, I'm no literary scholar so my take will be simple.  Anyway, I found this old man, Santiago, quite an extraordinary man.  After all, he fought off five sharks and managed to catch an eighteen foot marlin all by his lonesome self on a small inshore boat somewhere in the Gulf Stream.  That's no ordinary grandpa!!  I can't believe he did it, but sure love the idea that endurance, experience, and respectful attitude are ingredients for a hero.  Certainly, this was so in the eyes of the old man's apprentice Manolin, the boy (actually an adult). 

What an awesome message.  Although we don't have literal sharks circling us, we do have difficult obstacles that are equally tasking.  Our attitude, our resourcefulness, and our fortitude make for elements that would sustain us in such hard times.  There is just something to stories that end with I fought a good fight theme that encourages one to believe that one can overcome a seemingly hopeless case.  Great job, Mr. Hemingway!

My quote-ables:
"I will show him what a man can do and what a man endures." pg 73
"But man is not made for defeat.  A man can be destroyed but not defeated." pg 114
"Now is no time to think of what you do not have.  Think of what you can do with what there is."  pg 122

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