The story that has meant the most to me so far is "On The Rainy River." This story meant a lot to me because it shows how tough choices and inner feelings intertwine. It was obvious to the reader that Tim didn't want to go to war and Tim knew that himself. Elroy Berdahl helped Tim make the most important choice of his life without actually helping in a way. He was subtle about how he helped and never spoke of it or asked about Tim's situation. He helped in a way that was so subtle that it was hardly even noticed by Tim. I think it is absolutely amazing how a man of 81 years-old can be so helpful and yet so subtle in his approach. He was almost like God, in human form, helping guide Tim so that he could make his decision. "It struck me then that he must've planned it. I'll never be certain, of course, but I think he meant to bring me up against the realities, to guide me across the river and to take me to the edge and stand a kind of vigil as I chose a life for myself."(O'Brien p. 53).
I connect with Kiowa the most because my Grandma's side of the family has a lot of native american influence in it. They are all religious and I love the history that comes along with it. Kiowa reminds me a lot of myself and my family because we respect one another and try to help each other whenever the time comes. I have been raised to be respectful and polite to everyone and Kiowa reminds of myself in a way. It really got me good when I learned that he died such a tragic death and I really felt for the whole platoon and especially Kiowa's family.
I thought there was one part in the reading where Tim O'Brien was really splendid in his writing. That part was when he was talking about Vietnam and he said," You'd be sitting at the top of a high hill, the flat paddies stretching out below, and the day would be calm and hot and utterly vacant, and you'd feel the boredom dripping inside you like a leaky faucet, except it wasn't water, it was a sort of acid, and with each little droplet you'd feel the stuff eating away at important organs." (O'Brien p. 33).
This is so intensifying that it makes you really think about and wonder if it was really that bad. It sounds like hell to me and he really brings it out shoves straight into the reader's heart. He did a great job at making me think and i'm sure he made other people think too. He uses metaphors to really exaggerate how boring it was and he does a really good job at it.
"The dentist couldn't find any problem, but Lemon kept insisting, so the man finally shrugged and shot in the Novocain and yanked out a perfectly good tooth. There was some pain, no doubt, but in the morning Curt Lemon was all smiles" (O'Brien p. 84). When I first read this I was shocked. I had no clue what to think. Why would someone want a perfectly good tooth pulled out and go through all of the pain. All I could come up with was that he was just jealous and he couldn't stand the fact that he fainted when he was walking in the get his teeth checked. He had to prove to the men that he wasn't a sissy and that he was a stronger and more brave man than what he had displayed earlier. It was all about his image. He wanted the men to have a good image of him and he thought that it was necessary in order to keep his image.