Thursday, December 07, 2006
This week I read The Pearl by John Steinbeck.
I imagined a reporter coming to me to interview
me on my take on this book.
Q. So, in a technical sense, was this a well
A. It was written by John Steinbeck, so the
answer is "yes". (What a riduculous question.)
Q. Can you summarize this book, so I'll know
what it is all about?
A. Sure. It is based on a Mexican folk legend.
A poor villager is in desperate need of help
from the local doctor. He goes pearl diving to
try and find enough pearls for cash to pay the
doctor. He finds the Pearl of the World.
It is amazing. It sings to him of hope and of unheard
possibiliies. But from the moment of finding it
only evil things come into the man's life.
Finally the most evil thing of all happens and
he throws the Pearl of the World back into the
bosom of the sea.
Q. Hmmm. What would you say, in general is the
mood of this book?
A. This is Steinbeck we're talking about. The mood
is sad and depressing.
Q. Then is there no hope in this book.
A. Actually at the end of the book, there is a
paragraph that speaks to some hope. If it wasn't
there, if there were no redemption of any kind,
it would be an impossibility for the mind to
absorb this book. It is a long paragraph and I
will only give you the last few sentences for
The people say the two seemed to be removed from
human experience; that they had gone through pain
and had come out on the other side; that there was
almost a magical protection about them. And those
people who had rushed to see them crowded back and
let them pass and did not speak to them.
Now if you'll excuse me I've got clothes to wash
and breakfast to cook. This interview is at an