The Drunkard

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Drinking underage is not something a person jokes about; but Frank O’Connor story “The Drunkard” is a story about Larry, a kid, who gets drunk, but does it for a good cause. In the story O’Connor uses first person point of view, irony and humor to make this story more entertaining. The narrator is Larry Delaney, the main character, the son of Mick Delany. In the beginning of the story after Mr. Dooley, Mick Delany friend, dies he says “I did not take the report of his death seriously. Even then I felt there must be a catch and that some summer evening Mr. Dooley must reappear at our gate to give us the lowdown on the next world.” (339) Only from Larry’s point of view would it have been known that he thought of it like that; because his dad was upset his friend died and his mother just felt bad because it was her husband friend that died. Irony also played a significant important part in this story. I believe the most important part of the story that shows irony of situation was after the mother asked who will take care of Larry. “I’ll look after Larry,” Father said graciously. “The little walk will do him good.” There was no more to be said, though we all knew I didn’t need anyone to look after me, and that I could quite well have stayed home and looked after Sonny, but I was being attached to the party to act as a brake on Father. As a brake I had never achieved anything, but Mother still had great faith in me. (341) This quote I think is the most ironic one of the story because the mother positions her son as a “brake” for her husband drinking. This is not the first time the mother positions Larry in that position for his father, but it is the first time he succeeds. When Larry found he was going with his father to the funeral to be a “brake” on his drinking, he had the night all planned out of how it was going to end up. He imagined taking his father home drunk again and all the neighbors calling him a drunk. The irony was that Larry actually achieved...
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