John Updike's Choice: Choice Against Fate

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Within both of John Updike’s “A&P” and Haruki Murakami’s “On Seeing the 100% Perfect Girl One Beautiful April Morning,” choice against fate is a recurring concept in which both protagonists in respective stories have reached the decision of tempting fate; a conscious one at that, not to mention as the story unravels. In Updike’s “A&P,” the protagonist believes that he has a choice in the life he is living in and detests his job. Sammy has a tedious life where he works at a local A&P store as a cashier and living through the very selfsame day like a relentless, endless cycle. In a way, he is not much taken with his profession due to the boredom it entails and believes that he has a choice in the life he is living in; Sammy could have a better job if he wants instead of being a cashier at a small grocery store in the town he resides. An example of Sammy’s assumption that he has a choice in the life he lives is his thoughts on his boss, Lengel. Sammy describes the manager of the local A&P store as someone who is “pretty dreary, teaches Sunday school and the rest, but he doesn 't miss that much” (Updike 3). Sammy thought Lengel as someone who is the very definition of a human being who prefers order over rebellion, being constantly engaged in prosaic activities and is attentive to his surroundings, as he is aware of everything that occurs within the store he manages. Perhaps in a way, Sammy envisions himself to be a more youthful version of his employer as he parades around the
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