Monday, January 23, 2012

Themes: 'Carrie.'

c2012 (S)

I had the devil of a time sleeping last night, and there is a time just before dawn when everything looks so bleak.

On my way to get a coffee, for some reason I found myself thinking about Stephen King's 'Carrie.' I was just trying to figure out what the themes were.

What was so bad about Carrie? What made her so different, that justified the torment of her peers? She wasn't imagining it, it was real.

She was a bit off, I suppose, but people like that also survive and enjoy pretty normal lives much of the time. They have friendships, they get married, they have babies. Ignoring the fact that she had certain powers, telekinesis, or whatever, would she have gone off 'inevitably' at some other point in her life, maybe at work, if the appropriate provocation did not happen at the high school prom?

Was that simply her fate, and it could not be altered?

Would Carrie have gone postal at work, even if she did not have supernatural powers to deal out death and destruction?

Didn't she sort of lack a sense of humour about herself? Was it really her mom's fault? Surely the prank with the pig's blood was what triggered her, but it had been building up inside her for a while. Right?

People make a big thing out of symbolic rite-of-passage rituals, and the prom is a high point in many young women's lives. But then so is their wedding, their first-born, the day the eldest one goes to college.

In real life, lots of things go wrong, and plenty of nice things get ruined. Sometimes things get ruined maliciously by other people who ought to know better. Again ignoring the supernatural element in the story, any rational person would have held back and kept that power a secret, knowing full well the consequences, both legal and moral. A rational person would have understood that they really didn't have the right. Maybe Carrie had just had enough.

Maybe there is the potential for violence and or evil in each and every one of us.

Is that one of the lessons? Aging pseudo-scholars can debate that for thousands of years, now that all of our great literary works are in cloud-based storage units...

Today, it seems as if I am in an Ornery Mood. But, I have some sense. For example, I have never submitted my story, '101 Ways to Kill Stephen King,' and I may never do it. It's just a fun little thing, but I don't want to do hard time. I have always drawn back from the edge, when standing on the brink of an abyss.

Life isn't that bad.

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