What comes to our mind when we think of the word “homeless” is a multitude of words that describes greed, addiction and violence. Sometimes, we neglect to consider the fact that even those with no materialistic worth can be kind-hearted. In the story “Emil” by Stuart McLean, the character Morley realized that being charitable often have nothing to do with being privileged after her encounters with Emil. Her attempts to offer the homeless man money and food are often waved away, as Emil would say, “I don’t need it, I have enough. I have enough.” (111) Furthermore, when Emil won the lottery, he gave more than half of it away to his friends who helped him. Emil, as a man with no work, home or possessions except a remote control, broke the stereotypical impression of his kind by acting with altruism and thrift. As the story finishes, Morley finally realized that it is the heart that pushes someone to give back to the society, not the privileges that they may possess.
After Montag reveals his hidden books to his wife and persuades her to read it along with him, it really impressed me about how much Montag has grown in his confidence in himself. His internal conflict is obvious and striking, a clash between everything he had known and the haunting shadows of books. Montag wants to find out more about the past, when books weren’t burnt, and he seeks the find out about what books trap between those dusty, yellow pages. Yet, he knew that if his supervisor found out, he would lose his job, and maybe his life. This conflict reaches its own climax as Montag witnesses an old woman who willingly embraced death with her books in flames when the firemen came. Montag is stunned and distressed, exclaiming to her wife: “There must be something in books, things we can’t imagine… this fire will last me the rest of my life.” (54-55) Driven by that, Montag decides to leave his job and start reading, to find answers of his life and beyond. Montag’s change was almost predictable right from the start of the book, in that it follows the hero’s journey closely. He seemingly lack of thoughts and decisiveness could be due to the completely absence of education and philosophy. This is also a warning to our present society. Books are already starting to step down to TV, “Reader’s Digest” and magazines that eliminate the need to understand works of classic. Clarisse says that kids her age “all say the same things and nobody says anything different from anyone else.” (33) which sadly reminds me faintly of the present school system. TALONS is a different matter all together, but I have seem how countless would keep their silence and vote their support to the first voice that breaks the silence. In a fact-based education, in some countries more than others, kids learn that a question have only one answer, much like the straight-forward world that Montag lives in. Montag demonstrates a high level of inclusiveness and acceptance for new ideas among his fellow citizens. Clarisse shared with him that: “You’re not like the others. The others would walk off and leave me talking. Or threaten me. No one has time any more for anyone else.” (25) Perhaps that is what ultimately resulted in his turnaround.
Tick, plop. Droplets seemingly the size of marbles hammered into my soggy jacket, shoving my drained feet deeper into the dark mud. A scared squirrel scurried past me, but I could pay no attention to the world around me. My footsteps echoed in the confines of my head, an oddly hypnotic rhythm mixed with the sound of a faint, inarticulate heart. The world seems to have veiled itself with a featureless, ashen fog, stretching into infinity but at the same time squeezing and choking me like a cloth of lead. Time is a snail, dawdling in idleness as it witnessed my battles. Rest is for the weak, I must keep going, keep walking, keep fighting.