Monday, August 1, 2022

Reading 5

Alice Munro, "Marrakesh," Something I've Been Meaning To Tell You: Thirteen Stories

Rural Ontario.

Dorothy is a retired grade-school teacher living with another retired woman named Viola. They're grudging friends who keep each other company in their own age.

One day, Dorothy's granddaughter Jeannette comes to live with them. It's hippy times. Jeannette wears a long braid down her back and beads, she's well-educated and a little haughty, Dorothy thinks, such that she stands out in town.

A fellow who comes to visit Dorothy and Viola regularly, a married man named Blair King, drops by one afternoon. Dorothy says he'll have to come by that evening and they can all share a drink.

Dorothy goes out to buy some liquor, and then that evening Blair comes over and they all have a little liquor party. Blair gets to talking about trips abroad he took with his wife, which prompts Jeannette to share about the time she went to Marrakesh with a friend and got robbed. She was outside her RV crying, and two young Arab men came by, telling her that if she was robbed she should go to the police. They offer to drive her. She agrees. But the young men take her home instead under the pretenses of meeting their family. Only when they arrive there's no family there. One young man goes out to get food, the other tries to sexually assault Jeannette, even holding a knife at her throat. She refuses to submit to him, and then the first young man returns with the food and goes after the other young man, who puts away his knife. They all eat together, then the first young man drives her home and offers to marry her, and proceeds to offer marriage every day following this, appearing at her hotel every day. She eventually leaves Marrakesh.

Dorothy suspects there's something about this story that Jeannette is leaving out. She even wonders if Jeannette isn't making it up.

Drunk, Blair goes home, and the three women all go to bed, but then Dorothy wakes up in the middle of the night and goes outside to stretch. She walks across lawns until she arrives at Blair King's house where, in a glassed-in porch, she sees Blair and Jeannette disrobe and make love. Dorothy closes her eyes, feeling embarrassed and old.

Ted Hughes, "Fate Playing," Birthday Letters: Poems

Ted recalls the time his wife Sylvia expected to meet him in London but was waiting on the bus stop instead of the train station. He later learned the story. In tears, she would talk to every bus driver, asking where her husband was, until one suggested he might have taken the train to King's Cross. So she took a taxi to the station, and Ted recalls seeing his wife in tears and show she flung her arms around her and how the taxi driver who had taken her there stood by, laughing. "There I knew what it was/ To be a miracle," Ted thought.

Brendan Sheehan, Understanding Keynes' General Theory, Chapter 3: "Aggregate Effective Demand"

I need to have my wife explain this to me. I don't understand the equations at all.

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