Essay PreviewMore ↓
It seems that everyone thinks that all disaster has struck in Amy Hempel’s "Today Will Be A Quiet Day." I disagree. I think that everything might seem to be going bad, but when the day is over the children’s father realizes that everything is absolutely fine. The situations in the beginning of the story lead you to believe that the story will be depressing. But throughout the story I pick up little hints that this day was exactly what everybody needed: to get away from everything. At the end of the day everyone seems to be peaceful and calm.
The father seems to be a single dad who has picked his children up for the weekend. The mother isn’t mentioned in the story, which makes me believe that the parents are already split up and maybe going through the finalizing of the divorce papers. The children happen to be staying with their mother throughout the separation, and they are now with their father for the weekend. Since he doesn’t get to see them that often now, he decides to take a day to spend completely with the children and go on a little trip. The father does this because he "wanted to know how they were, is all" (Hempel 1202). They seemed to be doing great on their own, but he just wanted to make sure.
During the trip, the father realizes that there is a lot of hostility between the kids. The brother keeps nagging on his sister, trying to scare her. When the father sees this, he says that people think they are safe but they really are just thinking that they are invisible because their eyes are closed (Hempel 1203). The family was safe together until the separation. The father was thinking that everything was fine between the kids, but when he got them together he saw how sarcastic they were to each other. The father senses all the depressing conversation and tries to lighten it up by asking if either of the kids knows any jokes. This attempt was shot down though when the joke not only didn’t have an understandable punch line, but it dealt with an unlaughable matter.
When they finally made it to Pete’s, the restaurant where they were going to eat, the kids are still bickering back and forth.
How to Cite this Page
"Peace and Calm in Today Will Be A Quiet Day." 123HelpMe.com. 15 Nov 2019
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- Moral Philosophy of Global Peace ABSTRACT: Global Peace is the summum bonum, so we must know its negative as well as positive meanings. Simultaneously peace must be understood in all its interrelated but theoretically differentiated dimensions as personal, social, national, international and global. Today, humankind is suffering from multidimensional crises such as terrorism, population-explosion, denial of human rights, economic inequality, racial discrimination, ideological extremism, religious intolerance, social injustice, ecological imbalance, consumerism, oppression of weak, etc.... [tags: Philosophy Philosophical Papers]
3462 words (9.9 pages)
- “Can I get back to you on that a little bit later today?” “Sure thing Hon. But just remember, if you don’t call, I’ll be knocking on your door,” Gwen warned. After they hung up, Lena began to feel a little weirded out. An eerie sensation settled on her and she felt almost like it was a déjà vu occurrence. Gooseflesh formed on her arms but she shrugged it off, chalking it up to the devastating events of the last few days. It could only be some form of after-effect from all the tragic, recent changes in her life.... [tags: 2007 singles, 2006 singles, Debut albums]
2740 words (7.8 pages)
- A Family in Turmoil in Today Will Be A Quiet Day In Amy Hempel’s story, "Today Will Be A Quiet Day," a father takes the day off to spend time with his two children at a place called "Petaluma." The title suggests that this day was one of calmness and relaxation, but in reality the title should be " A Family in Turmoil." Throughout the trip, the children argue, complain, and bicker which seems to suggest that the day is rather depressing and quite humbling for the father (Baker 170). The father’s good intentions for quality family time failed.... [tags: Today Will Be a Quiet Day Essays]
861 words (2.5 pages)
- The Terminal Tale of Today Will Be A Quiet Day After reading "Today Will Be A Quiet Day" by Amy Hemple, I had an eerie feeling that something bad was going on behind the scenes. I feel that the father has a terminal disease and he wants to happily live out the last few days of his life. I think that there is conclusive evidence that "Today Will Be A Quiet Day" is not a happy story, but in fact a sad one. First of all, death plays a huge role in this story. Death is brought up so many times in this story one can only conclude that there is some kind of foreshadowing going on.... [tags: Today Will Be a Quiet Day Essays]
890 words (2.5 pages)
- A Happier Tomorrow in Today Will Be a Quiet Day In the story "Today Will Be a Quiet Day" written by Amy Hempel, one may be inclined to believe that there is a tone of depression or sadness among the father and the two children. This is shown in the opening sentence, while the three are stalled in traffic on the Golden Gate Bridge. The boy states, "I think if the quake hit now the bridge would collapse and the ramps would be left" (Hempel 1202). We also learn that the boy had a best friend who committed suicide about a year before.... [tags: Today Will Be a Quiet Day Essays]
738 words (2.1 pages)
- The Uplifting Tale of Today Will Be a Quiet Day Some readers see death, but when I read the story "Today Will Be a Quiet Day" by Amy Hempel, I find it to be a light hearted, first-hand account of people coping with transition. Even its location in the table of contents under the heading "Childhood and Adolescent" (Barnet), implies that the story is not about death at all. A newly defined family, one man, a boy and a girl, is faced with the aftermath of divorce and explore among themselves the intricacies of life.... [tags: Today Will Be a Quiet Day Essays]
1114 words (3.2 pages)
- The movie The Quiet Man directed by John Ford is a far cry from the Westerns his most noted for directing however for John The Quiet Man “was the most personal film he ever made (it was also one of his favorites” (Berardinelli). In The Quiet Man John Ford brings together one of his most favorite Western actors, John Wayne, who is undeniably the central character, and the ever stunning Maureen O’Hara to brings to life a warmhearted, down-to-earth romantic comedy. He created a movie that is primarily focuses on characters and atmosphere, than on its plot, and is able to bring romance to life, not through the use of powerful dialogue, but through the use of glances and on screen tension.... [tags: The Quiet Man, John Ford]
1307 words (3.7 pages)
- All Quiet on the Western Front The setting of this novel takes place in Germany during World War I. the war is being fought at the fronts- which is almost every side of Germany where other countries lie. For the most part, Paul Baumer stays on the western front, (north west of Belgium), during the three years when the novel takes place. The setting is very important because it shows the darkest part of the war, when most of Germanys fighting takes place. Paul Baumer, a young soldier who enjoys writing poems and plays, becomes a man during his three years of service.... [tags: All Quiet on the Western Front Essays]
960 words (2.7 pages)
- At the beginning of the 20th Century, the great powers of the world engaged in the largest war concerning deaths in modern times. This war, which is often called the Great War, or World War I, had serious consequences that have affected our world today a great deal. One novel, All Quiet on the Western Front, has been considered a classic and possibly "the greatest war novel of all time". The story follows the adventures of a German solider, Paul Baumer, from the time he enters the military to his unfortunate death at the end.... [tags: Quiet Western Front War Remarque]
1007 words (2.9 pages)
- All Quiet on the Western Front Erich Maria Remarque’s literary breakthrough, All Quiet on the Western Front, describes two stories. It meticulously chronicles the thoughts of a soldier in World War I while simultaneously detailing the horrors of all wars; each tale is not only a separate experience for the soldier, but is also a new representation of the fighting. The war is seen through the eyes of Paul Baumer whose mindset is far better developed in comparison to his comrades’. His true purpose in the novel is not to serve as a representation of the common soldier, but to take on a godly and omniscient role so that he may serve as the connection between WWI and all past and future m... [tags: All Quiet on the Western Front Essays]
1919 words (5.5 pages)
- Importance of Community in El Tonto Del Barrio
- Shah’s Fables in The Way of Sufi
- The Meaning of Heritage in Alice Walker's Everyday Use
- Revelation and Rebirth in Helena Viramonte's The Moths
- Essay on the Selfish Mrs. Mallard in Kate Chopin's The Story of an Hour
- A Feminist Reading of A Woman on a Roof
The story of the pet dog shows how people’s feelings have to be taken into consideration. You see how easily the daughter’s emotions were brought out when the dog is mentioned. After this conversation, the daughter is ready for the ride home. This shows she is ready to handle her feelings and move on.
At home, they all talked for a while and everything was fine. Absolutely nothing bad had happened. The father felt good about his relationship with the kids. We know this when we are told that the father "doubted he would ever feel not better, but more than he did now" (Hempel 1206). The story ends happily. As the father states, "there is no bad news" (Hempel 1206).
I disagree with both Tara Baker and Justin Oeltze. They both feel that there is some big disaster waiting to happen. I think that they look into the story too much. They take everyday small talk and turn it into great examples of foreshadowing. They actually think the dad’s tombstone epithet is foreshadowing of his death. I hear people say all the time what they would like to be remembered for when they die or what they would have liked to accomplish; this doesn’t mean they are going to die now because they make this statement. I think Baker and Oeltze need to cheer up their views.
Brian Motzenbecker, on the other hand, also agrees that this story doesn’t have to deal with disaster. Motzenbecker mentions that there could be a divorce involved. This is along the same lines as what I believe is going on. Motzenbecker seems to have understood the story in a general sense. He didn’t read deep into the lines; he just read the story and understood the idea he was trying to make the reader understand. I like this system.
"Today Will Be A Quiet Day," is just a simple story about a father and his two kids dealing with a situation that is becoming more and more common in today’s society. The father is trying to be sure that his kids are handling the separation between their parents as well as possible. The father just shows concern for his children, and it seems that he just wants reassurance that they still care for him. The day goes by and everything is fine in the end; the father feels that his kids "are all right" (Hempel 1206).
Baker, Tara. "Is Today Really Quiet?" Ode To Friendship And Other Student Essays. Ed. Connie Bellamy. Connie Bellamy, 1997.
Hempel, Amy. ‘Today Will Be A Quiet Day." The Harper Anthology of Fiction. Ed. Sylvan Barnet. New York: Harper Collins, 1991. 1202-1207.
Motzenbecker, Brian. "Does It Spell Disaster?" Ode To Friendship & Other Essays. Ed. Connie Bellamy. Connie Bellamy, 1997.
Oeltze, Justin. "A Sad Story." Ode To Friendship & Other Essays. Ed. Connie Bellamy. Norfolk, Va.: Virginia Wesleyan College, 1997.