Critical Reading – theintern

Section 18

1.”But here we’ve got lasagna, and salad with an array of dressing choices, and a store-bought frosted Bundt cake with chocolate chips in it!”

  • Dressing choices: We can assume the word dressing choices indicates that there was a variety of dressings and the people wouldn’t have to just choose one.
  • The store bought cake can be assumed that Brannan does not know how to bake a cake or just doesn’t have the time to bake a cake.
  • By having an exclamation point end with chocolate chips means that Brannan loves chocolate chips and is excited to have them in the cake.

2. “There is no dining-room table—when they bought the house years ago, they thought they’d finish it up real nice like they did with another house, before the war, but nobody’s up for that now, so we all huddle around the coffee table in the living room.”

  • Years ago: It seems like they were financially stabled because as they said that they finished it up real nice.
  • War: This war really screwed the whole family up. The family thought that they would be same even after the war but it left heart broken because the man of the house Caleb was suffering from PTSD which back pedaled their plans.
  • No dining room table could mean that they are not financially stabled and can’t afford to buy one or that the house that they bought did not have the space for the table.
  • Huddled: By the word “huddled” the author means that the family had to make the best out of where they ate and that was on a coffee table in the living room.
  • Nobody’s up for it now: By this phrase the author sums up what the family goes through on a daily basis with the father/husband’s PTSD and that no body is normal enough or has the free time to fix up the house.

3. “And it’s lovely. Dinner lasts for hours. Brannan tries to calm Katie down despite the excitement of the visitor at dinner, while Katie shows me games and drawings as we eat.”

  • Lovely: The author describes how it’s lovely in the sense of how peaceful the environment is and how much love is being shared.
  • Visitor: The word “visitor” is used to allow the audience know the author’s acquaintance with the family.
  • Seems like Katie never sees other older people because maybe the family does not have the time/patience to meet and greet with other parents.
  • The author expresses Katie as too excited that Brannan has to calm her child down because a visitor is over where she offers the author to look at her games/drawings.

4. “Caleb makes jokes that it does indeed feel like he and Brannan have been married for-ever.”

  • Joke: The author notices that Caleb still has a sense of humor.
  • Caleb acknowledges and remembers that Brannan is his wife and that it has been a long time they’ve been married.
  • Caleb “feels” that he is married to her for-ever with the numbers in his head actually knowing.

5. “he laughs when he says this, she laughs, and swats at him from where she’s curled herself into his armpit with his arm around her.”

  • The love and joy is still in the air because they both laugh at Caleb’s joke and are not laughing at each other.
  • Swat: The author uses the word “swat” because it’s an action verb that represents playfulness and teasing each love couple does to one another for affection.
  • Curled: This word is used to show how comfortable Brannan is with Caleb and how she can curl into his armpit with his arm around her.
  • Armpit: The author used the word “armpit” even though some people might find it disgusting to hear but does it really matter when you love someone and that’s what the author tried to show the audience, the compassionate love they had for each other.

6. “At the front door, we all beam at each other in the warm way people do when they’re separating after a nice meal.” 

  • Why the front door, some people open the garage door to leave and others go through the side door.
  • Beam: The author uses the word “beam” as sense of fear but he rephrased it and said in a warm way because usually beam means to look at someone with long glance and have fear develop inside the person you stare at.
  • Separating: This word is a harsh word to use because it means to separate from someone and never see them again in which has done.
  • It is confirmed that the author went to Caleb’s house for a nice meal, observed his surroundings and left with a warm beam looking at them.

7. “Caleb is in such a good mood that Brannan asks if he’s up for putting Katie to bed so she can go lie down.” 

  • Good Mood: The author uses this word to describe how Caleb is feeling at the time concerning he has PTSD which means at times he has break downs and starts screaming where he always feels he is in danger.
  • Ask: It is hard for Brannan to ask Caleb for anything because he is not right in the state of mind and doesn’t want him to feel stressed out about anything.
  • Lie Down: The author uses this word “lie down” instead of sleep because the author knows that it won’t be long till Caleb starts screaming which means she can only “lie down” for a few minutes while sleeping means to doze off for more than an hour.
  • Seems like the audience can estimate how old Katie is and that she needs someone to tuck her in at night.

8. “Not two days after that, he tells her he’s leaving her. “I’m going to get it over with and do it so you don’t have to,” he says,” 

  • Not: The word “not” is used to say that is hasn’t been long till something has happened.
  • After a long time of being married, Caleb is leaving his wife because of the pain she goes through to be with him.
  • Get it over with: This phrase is used to mean that the person wants to be done with any deed and not regret anything.
  • The author explains that Caleb was strongly using “you” towards Brannan and not the audience.
  • Caleb ended the relationship because he knew that Brannan would not end it, even though Caleb felt horrible he did not want Brannan to suffer anymore.
  • We can tell that Caleb is getting better because he can make more decisions on his own with out being too mad about it.

9. when he weighs the pain of being alone versus the pain of being a burden.”

  • Weighs: The author expresses this word as the weight he mentally and physically carries.
  • His weight consists of being alone and the heavy load some he must carry all due because of his PTSD.


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