Life like a pendulum
Recently, I have read a novel written by O. Henry. It is called The Pendulum. Though it is a very tiny story, besides the surprise it has brought me, what is conveyed in this novel is valuable for us to think about it.
The main character, John Perkins, had a not-so-dissatisfying marriage with his wife Katy. He used to go out to play the pools and bum with his friends till late in the night. His wife would always sit at the couch, waiting for him and complaining angrily. Their life was so in a routine every day that it is just like a pendulum working changelessly. Until one day, John went home only to find everything was in a mess and his wife had left in a hurry because of her mother's sickness. It was the first time for John and his wife to get seperated since they got married two years ago. John was at a loose end. He sat down at the couch, lonesomely and uncomfortably, thinking of how lonely Katy was when she was satting here and waiting for him to come back home every night. Now their life was just like the swaying of a pendulum being interrupted by certain external force. John should have gone out to play the pools with his friends till as late as he like because he was free and there would not be an angry Katy satting at the couch, scowling at him and complaining endlessly. However, John did not do that.
To tell the truth, it will be a delight for readers to find that John is determined to give up his previous habits like playing out late in the night. There is no denying that sometims we are too addicted in our own life and own world to realise what people that are close to us feel. When they do good to us, we may used to take it for granted. Only when we realise that we have lost or are going to lose it can we understand that we should learn to cherish. Therefore, we should always be grateful for the kindness that otherse give us.
However, if the ending of this story is so easy for us readers to predict, then this story would have no difference with a soap opera.
Katy actually went back home very soon because when she arrived home, she discovered that her mother's sickness has already had no impact so she immediately went back. Then, instead of staying at home to accompany his wife after that serious thinking, John told his wife that his was going to play the pools with his friends as usual. It really surprises me a lot. But in fact, I don't need to be so surprised at all because John is a typical petty bourgeois. Although at a moment he could realised his conscience, after all, he would still take his own pleasure as the most important thing. And as for the reason that he will think of his wife's feelings, it is because he still had human's basic sympathy. Then I finally understand why this novel is called The Pendulum.It is not only because pendulum works changelessly forever, but also pendulum will go on to work like before even if it is interrupted by an external force for a moment. John and Katy is life is like so. Their daily life has never been changed in the past two years. When the external force, the sudden sickness of Katy's mother, came up, their life was totally interrupted and John was at a loss. But when Katy went back home, their somehow messy life returned back to normal as usual soon.
As it is not a rigid Chinese book review, I am not going to talk so much about such things as characteristics of certain classes. But I can't help marvelling at the ingenious innovation of the author. In fact, tiny stories are somehow much more interesting than a long novel. Any authors that could show charm of a tiny story to readers is great.