I Smelled My Father John Cheever

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The “Reunion” is the shortest yet most powerful reading by far. The biggest thing humans waste is time. It is taken way too much for granted, and it seems that we only appreciate it when we’ve realized we’ve run out of it. The people you take for granted today may turn out to be the only ones you need tomorrow.
The story is told by the point of view of the child, one of the two main characters in the story. The fact that the child is the narrator provides us the information about his excitement and expectations of seeing his father after a long time. The introduction of the father reveals many things about the narrator. Although he thinks of his father as a stranger, he can feel that it’s his own father coming down the crowd “I smelled my father
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The connotative meaning of the word “father”, a male parent, is someone we can rely on, someone that we feel is our flesh and blood although we have been separated from him for a while. The father’s uses of the German, French and Italian words for “waiter” have a completely different meaning for the story. With the uses of these words the father tries to impress his son, although he doesn 't succeed in that. The use of the word “sommelier”, a wine waiter, has a connotative meaning of inadequacy, showing the readers that the father behaves improperly for the place where he is. It is inadequate because the father shouts and claps his hands in a place that is a serious…show more content…
His view of his father is no longer of admiration, but just a memory he would rather delete. “We sat down, and my father hailed the waiter in a loud voice…If it isn’t too much to ask of you—if it wouldn’t be too much above and beyond the call of duty…” (Cheever 124). The quote shows how the author begins to use sarcasm as humor to portray how grotesque Charlie’s father really is. As the story keeps developing Charlie’s dad gets worse: “Kind sir, will you be good enough to favor me with one of your God-damned, no-good, ten-cent afternoon papers?” (Cheever 126). Charlie was close to leaving when the father said the quote above. The grotesque behavior, used as humor, the father took on was a building tool that was used cleverly by the author so that the last sentence of his story portrayed what his meaning was; “’Good bye daddy,’ I said, and I went down the stair and got my train, and that was the last time I saw my father.” (Cheever 126). The last line was clearly used pathos to affect the feelings of the reader.
So throughout the short story “Reunion” we see how John Cheever use the grotesque behavior of the father as humor, and then how both the grotesque and humor were cleverly put there so that Cheever could use pathos to add sentiment to the short story. He blended all three in the story so that the meaning was shown. Always be an example for your child, because you never know
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