What's bad is good and what's good is bad

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"I remember the day you could go off and leave your screen door unlatched. Not no more." ~ Red Sammy (A Good Man is Hard to Find, O'Connor)


Society is degrading. Going down the tubes; at least it sometimes seems. Those who smile like angels can have the tongues of snakes and those who are entitled to a complimentary paper bag to wear have the purest hearts of all. Then again, not everything is so black and white. There's good with the bad, but you have to look past the cover in order to read the pages within. Red Sammy can almost be called white trash for all he's described: "His khaki trousers reached just to his hip bones and his stomach hung over them like a sack of meal swaying under his shirt." He runs a run-down gas station and BBQ place too. But it was Sammy who was good enough to give gas to two guys on credit. They ripped him off and never paid. "Good afternoon," he said. "I see you all had you a little spill." Now, these seem like the words of a gentleman. Certainly not those of a serial killer call The Misfit. However, it is The Misfit that kills the entire family, a scholarly looking fellow and not the weight-challenged grease monkey.

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5 Comments

Angela Palumbo said:

I agree with you. I hadn't really noticed that the appearances are swapped in this story. It seems that most of the time, the people who are insanely good looking are the good guys and the bad guys have some weird physical qualities. It is sad that our society judges the book by its cover because there are so many people out there that are nice but don't get credit for it because society doesn't deem them pretty.

I can really identify with the quote that you chose, as well as the comment you made that society is going down the tubes.
In my own neighborhood, I've noticed changes. I used to be able to ride my bike up the alley to the market to buy my mom some groceries and ride back home with no problem. I could never see my little sister doing that by herself with the way society is now. Everyone has to be so cautious anymore, and you're right, appearances don't mean a thing because a kind looking old man can turn out to be a pedophile. It's crazy the way people are anymore.

Greta Carroll said:

Maddie, you make an excellent point. Appearances are not reality. Just because someone seems polite on the outside does not mean they are a good person.
Your quote also reminded me of a part in “Bowling for Columbine”, a documentary by Michael Moore. In one part, he showed that in Canada frequently the residents do not lock their doors. I found this correlation all the more ironic because the grandma “said that in her opinion Europe was entirely to blame for the way things are now” (O’Connor 8). So while she is blaming other countries for our problems, most of them don’t even have the crime rates we do.

Jessie Farine said:

Sometimes it is hard not to judge by appearances. We all know employers judge us by appearance, which is why I could never wear my tattered and patched hoodie to an interview and hope for a successful outcome, regardless of my nature or decency or whatever. And of course, I'd have to deal with similar judgments outside of that. Appearances aren't everything.

Deana Kubat said:

in general i agree that things that would have been seen as acceptable back a few years ago are now things that we do not think twice about doing. its kind of scary to think about huh.

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This page contains a single entry by MadelynGillespie published on February 11, 2008 5:06 PM.

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