Luck - both good and bad - is portrayed as a critical aspect in the story: A Marker on the Side of the Boat. For the main character, luck supports him in his dangerous journey but it also opposes him. For this individual, his luck kept him alive, also his luck got him acquainted to his probable soulmate, yet luck was the reason he lost her. Earl Wilson once said, “Success is simply a matter of luck. Ask any failure.” in this story, his success was he was alive, and his luck was what ensured that. In the start of the story, the main character was given permission to leave his post till midnight and go to town so he could deliver letters from his friends to their families. When he went into the town of Hanoi, it seemed to be deserted. No one …show more content…
Moreover, his luck seemed to have saved his life during the time the Americans were bombing the city. Right before the Americans were about to bomb the city, the soldier and the caring stranger fled her house and ran towards the safety of a public shelter. They were not able to make it in time, and they should be thankful for that, as it saved their lives. The Americans had bombed the public shelter and if they had gone there they might not have survived. During this time the soldier thought, “For the two of us [the soldier and the girl who cured him], I knew it was over.” Yet, they lived. This shows you how his luck was on his side and even when he lost hope, his luck didn’t waver. This fortunate luck also might have given him his soulmate. From the moment he woke up in her house he was captivated by her. He thought to himself, “An unearthly illusion, kind and beautiful. Kind and beautiful, her face, her eyes and lips, although I never really had a chance to look at her.” He was enthralled by her beauty and when they were together he was grateful that she took care of …show more content…
His only clue was a trolley, but even that was gone. Overcome with melancholy, he wandered the streets, and watched for even the slightest hint, but alas no luck. This tragic loss sticks to him for many years. As the author mentioned, “After the war, on my rare visits to Hanoi, I would always return to that same street.” It shows how he still has hope that maybe he might be able to find his love again,, but always went back empty. This event showed how luck betrayed him at the end, and because of his bad fortune he lost his heart’s desire, his one true love. The only thing that could have lead him to her house was a trolley that used to be parked in front of her house, and because of the bombing, the trolley was misplaced. His luck gave out and the only clue he relied on vanished. Even more, this incident was so transformative that years later he returns to the same place to find her. In the end, this story signifies how luck can played a critical role in the soldier's life, and how it saved his life, brought him his true love, but in the end snatched it away from
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Readers, especially those reading historical fiction, always crave to find believable stories and realistic characters. Tim O’Brien gives them this in “The Things They Carried.” Like war, people and their stories are often complex. This novel is a collection stories that include these complex characters and their in depth stories, both of which are essential when telling stories of the Vietnam War. Using techniques common to postmodern writers, literary techniques, and a collection of emotional truths, O’Brien helps readers understand a wide perspective from the war, which ultimately makes the fictional stories he tells more believable.
In Tim O’Brien’s novel, “The Things They Carried,” about the Vietnam war, courage is described as a necessity for all soldiers. He uses both him and his comrade’s circumstances to describe this. Throughout the novel the motif of courage evolves as characters serve in the Vietnam War. Being drafted into the Vietnam war forced O’Brien to become a soldier and participate in the war. His distaste for the war made it difficult for him to find the mental courage to fight in Vietnam which he thought was avoidable.
Personal view of O'Brien's anecdote:“If I Die in a Combat Zone…” In "If I die in a Combat Zone: Box Me Up and Ship Me Home", Tim O’Brien gives the readers a unique insight into the Vietnam War from a soldier’s perspective. He uses dark humor to describe his firsthand experience of combat and the feelings of fear, bravery, and loss. Drafted into the war, O’Brien begins his journey in a training camp in Washington, making a close comrade who shares similar views with him. During his time at the camp, he considers the senselessness of the war and thinks of fleeing the country with his comrade, Erik.
In his memoir, Where the Wind Leads, Vinh Chung demonstrates the theme that times of despair and hardship will eventually pass, but it is the motivation to succeed which will make that time fruitful. While relaying the story of his family’s past, Chung gives an overall theme of success and prosperity which accompanies the distress and conflict brought about by the encompassing Vietnam War. As Chung stated, “[W]hat I do know is that the same pressure that can crush coal into dust can also turn carbon into diamond . . . Tough times produce tough people” (14). Though this theme of success can be grounded in one’s desire to prosper, Chung shows a deeper desire from which this success stems.
In A Viet Cong Memoir, we receive excellent first hands accounts of events that unfolded in Vietnam during the Vietnam War from the author of this autobiography: Truong Nhu Tang. Truong was Vietnamese at heart, growing up in Saigon, but he studied in Paris for a time where he met and learned from the future leader Ho Chi Minh. Truong was able to learn from Ho Chi Minh’s revolutionary ideas and gain a great political perspective of the conflicts arising in Vietnam during the war. His autobiography shows the readers the perspective of the average Vietnamese citizen (especially those involved with the NLF) and the attitudes towards war with the United States. In the book, Truong exclaims that although many people may say the Americans never lost on the battlefield in Vietnam — it is irrelevant.
Regret is a powerful emotion that has the ability to scar someone for the rest of their life. Moments of regret can come from relationships, self-made decisions and life changing events. The idea of regret also applies to “A Marker on the Side of the Boat” by Bao Ninh and “On the Rainy River” by Tim O’Brien. Although these two literary pieces are very different in many ways, both authors describe the experience of the Vietnam War as a time of regretful decisions that negatively impacted people of both the American side and the Vietnamese side. Both authors tell a story about a character that recalls of flashbacks of the war, where they grieve over the past decisions that have affected them for the rest of their life.
How he hated being drafted and how badly he wanted to run away. He tells how he took time to himself to decide whether or not he was going to run away and risk being caught and imprisoned or go join the army and risk dying over in Vietnam. He states at the end, “ I passed through twins with familiar names, through the pine forests and down to the prairie, and then to Vietnam, where I was a soldier, and then home again. I survived, but it's not a happy ending. I was a coward.
In Tim O’Brien’s The Things They Carried, the author retells the chilling, and oftentimes gruesome, experiences of the Vietnam war. He utilizes many anecdotes and other rhetorical devices in his stories to paint the image of what war is really like to people who have never experienced it. In the short stories “Spin,” “The Man I Killed,” and “ ,” O’Brien gives reader the perfect understanding of the Vietnam by placing them directly into the war itself. In “Spin,” O’Brien expresses the general theme of war being boring and unpredictable, as well as the soldiers being young and unpredictable.
Horrific events can turn into days of remarklable wonder. In the story, “The Long Nights of the Little Boats,” by Basil Heatter, British troops were overrun by German Soldiers in Dunkirk. beThe need for them to be saved united thousands of random Englishmen to come to their rescue. The character of these men made them be the good people who came to the rescue of the soldiers. Positive Human traits make people successful which was witnessed by little boat rescuers traits, the soldiers traits, and my own personal traits.
Men went through so many tasks during the Vietnam War physically and mentally. The beginning chapters focus on training for war and being prepared for the worst. For example, when there is a sergeant in a room with the marines. The sergeant walks to the chalk board and writes “AMBUSHES ARE MURDER AND MURDER IS FUN” (36-37). The
Synthesis Essay In the Vietnam war, there were many soldiers at war with each other, and most soldiers were not prepared for the fight. In the novel The Things They Carried, Tim O’Brien was in the Vietnam war when he was young. The book was not in order but he still talks about his experiences while in the war. His purpose for writing this novel was because he wanted younger audience to know what happened in the war and what the soldiers experienced.
Much like the Narrator, his parents were born in North Vietnam and immigrated to the south in 1958. This was because catholic priests convinced them that the Viet Cong would commit atrocities when they took over. When the communist reach spread to the south, Viet Thanh Nguyen’s mother fled alongside him and his brother, leaving his father and sister behind in Saigon. This was unintentional, as the author describes; “My mother can’t communicate with my father, so she takes our lives into her hands and decides to flee the town on foot”. Luckily, his father had the same idea and through happenstance, they ended up leaving on the same barge.
“While I admired her understanding and fancy I loved to tend on her, as I should on a favorite animal; and I never saw so much grace both of a person and mind united to so little pretension.” He was in love with her since he saw her and the beauty, both physically and mentally, she
… They’re common as - weeds, but - you - well, you’re - Blue Roses! … You’re pretty!... In all respects… your eyes - your hair - are pretty!” (Sc.7 pg.78-79) Throughout her entire life she was defected compared to other girls and to have someone who she was enamoured with tell her those wonderful things was bliss.