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A Clean Well Lighted Place

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A Clean Well Lighted Place Ernest Hemingway is respected as a phenomenal writer. While I enjoyed A Clean Well-Lighted Place, I though it was a simple story. I made the mistake at taking it at face value. After all, I thought, short stories are just simple little tales about nothing, right? I was wrong. This short story told a deeper story. The deeper story didn't really have a moral or any highly symbolic points. It didn't even require very deep analysis. The deeper story just gave me a reason to be empathetic at times when it seems the least necessary. There are only three main characters in A Clean Well-Lighted Place. ...read more.


He is at the point in his life when things just seem to move too quickly and one never has enough time. He works at this place to make money. He doesn't work there to provide some lonely old man, who tried to commit suicide, with a place to stay and get drunk. He decides to usher the old man out by refusing him when he requests another brandy. The old waiter is empathetic toward the old man. He is one who enjoys staying up past everyone else in a clean well-lighted place, just being. He is past the rushing part of life, just as the old patron is. ...read more.


It is a very novel and enjoyable tale on it's own. However, with a little further investigation of this story, I came to a realization. When everything in life seems to be in fast-forward and you must run to catch up, it is easy to over-look the things you are running past. In this story, though not an urgent need, it would have been nice of the young waiter to allow the old patron just one more brandy. It would have been one more hour of enjoyment in this mans life. While the young waiter can go home to his wife, and we can go home to families, pets, room-mates, or a good book for some, this man has no one and nothing but a clean well-lighted place. Maybe he deserves another brandy; after all he's probably run a lot farther than we. ...read more.

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