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”a small good thing” by raymond carver essay sample

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In the story A Small Good Thing by Raymond Carver there are many epiphanies the three main characters have. The one that stood out to me was the one that happened to the baker. Early in the story the baker had a small relationship with the mother, Ann. He was supposed to just be making a birthday cake for Scotty, Ann’s son. While Scotty was in the hospital the cake was made but never picked up. The baker had every right to be mad that the cake would go to waste so he called the Weiss’s house multiple times reminding them to get the cake, and saying they forgot him. Later when Howard and Ann went to the bakers shop they explained to the baker that Scotty had died and that he was very rude and cruel to be calling so often.

At this moment the baker had his epiphany as to why the cake wasn’t picked up. Since the baker never knew about Scotty’s condition in the hospital this news was completely new and clarifying. He went from angry and confused to sad and empathetic for the family in a matter of seconds. The baker’s lack of understanding is shown how he harrasses the family and calls regarding Scotty in a time of trouble and sorrow. Any person with a soul would not do that knowingly. This change of heart is caused by the Weiss family confronting him about the calls, which turned into a heart to heart about the loss of a loved one.

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