Of Mice and Men
Of Mice and Men begins by the Salinas River. Two main characters named George Milton and Lennie Small, walk up to the river, Lennie gets on his knees and and takes a long drink. George gets upset with him for drinking so fast, water that might not even be good. Lennie's action shows he's mentally challenged. Lennie has to ask George where they are going because he can't remember. George, annoyed, reminds Lennie about where they got their jobs. George discovers Lennie has something in his coat pocket. It is a dead mouse, which Lennie wanted to keep and pet. Lennie loves to pet such soft things, but he is too strong; he usually kills them. It is not important to Lennie that the mouse is dead, but George is annoyed. Lennie reluctantly gives him the mouse, and George throws it across the water. George then asks Lennie if he remembers where they are going, but he has forgotten again. George tells him it is a job like the one they had in Weed. George tells Lennie not to say anything when they get to this new job. So, Lennie repeats the instructions softly to himself. It's important that he remembers because George wants to avoid trouble like they had in Weed. Also, if the boss heard Lennie's slow speech they could lose their jobs.
"Look George, look what I done." Chapter 1, page 5. Lennie is stating he's proud of how he could have ripples in the water with his hand.
'"I could pet it with my thumb while we walked along," said Lennie.' Chapter 1, page 7. I find this important because it gives a sense of what Lennie is like. He enjoys petting small aminals.
'"But not us! An' why? Because . . . because I got you to look after me, and you got me to look after you, and that's why." He laughed delightedly.' Chapter 1, page 15. I find this quote important because this shows just how much Lennie appreciates how Georges cares for him and vise versa.
'"An' live off the fatta the lan'," Lennie shouted.' Chapter 1, pages 15. Lennie is proud and excited about George telling him about their dream ranch.
The men arrive at the ranch the next morning after the other workers have gone out to the fields. An old man, named Candy, takes them to the bunkhouse and shows them where they can put their belongings. The old man is bent with age and missing one of his hands. George becomes angry with him when he finds lice spray near his bed, but the old man reassures him the bed is clean. The boss comes in, angry that Lennie and George have arrived late. Lennie forgets about not talking, and when the boss hears him repeat George's words, he becomes suspicious. George has to reassure the boss that although Lennie isn't bright, he is a hard worker. Still suspicious, the boss asks George what kind of scam he's running. George lies and says Lennie is his cousin, and he takes care of him because he was kicked in the head as a child. The boss is somewhat satisfied, and leaves. Once the boss is gone George gets mad at Lennie for almost losing their job. Lennie asks George if he was kicked in the head, or if they are cousins. Lennie seems unsure of his own history, and confused by the lie. George tells Lennie of course what he said was a lie. Without George's aid Lennie could never have gotten or kept this job.
'"No, he ain't, but he's sure a hell of a good worker. Strong as bull."' Chapter 2, page 22 This is important because George is trying to get Lennie a job at the ranch by tellin' the others he's strong as hell, but don't talk much.
'"I don't want no trouble," Lennie mourned. I never done nothing to him."' Chapter 2, page 29. This is important because it proves Lennie doesn't want to cause any trouble nor get him into any fights.
'"Don't let him pull you in---but---if the son-of-a-bitch socks you---let 'im have it."' Chapter 2, page 30. This is important because George is telling Lennie he needs to keep away from Curley, so Curley...
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