Recently I have read the short story, "Easy Pickings" by Tim Gautreaux, for Loyola Academy's short story review. The story is about a boy named Marvin, who lost control of his life and resorts to stealing. He changes his name to Big Blade to sound tough and bad, but in truth he is just small, scared, and dull. The story begins with Big Blade attempting to rob an old lady named Doris Landreneaux. During the whole story Big Blade is very mistaken in his decision to rob this particular old lady. He thought she would be afraid of him and hand over everything she owned, but he was sadly mistaken. The story is not about what to do if someone robs you but it has a deeper meaning of judgement and strength. Big Blade is just a small pathetic boy attempting to be a man, he changed his name in order to trick people into thinking he has power. Big Blade is a character that shows weakness. Doris is a very different character, she shows strength. She has all the power even though her exterior shows she is weak and old. Right when Big Blade sees Doris, he judges her for being an easy rob. His judgment lands him into a lot of trouble. he allows this judgment and weak mind to take over, while Doris never gives up and uses her strength to over take Big Blade. The message Tim Gautreaux is trying to put across is to not judge people by what they look like, or what their name is. he is telling the reader to look deeper into the person for who they really are. Doris Landreneaux saw right through Big Blade for the small weak boy he was.
Through out the story people were showing moments of grace. Doris is a strong vehicle of grace because of her ability to stay calm through out the whole situation and not let Bog Blade scare her. She saves herself as well as allowing Big Blade to realize he is not as tough as he thinks he is. Every reader will connect with her, and learn to love her. The police officer is also a vehicle of grace because he, in a not so obvious way, saves Doris. The last vehicle of grace were the card playing group next door. They spoke to Big Blade as if he was already forgiven for his actions toward Doris, and they also called the Police to save Doris.
Last week, I reviewed a different story by this author, "Waiting for the Evening News." This weeks and last weeks stories have a very similar story. Both are about a man in trouble. Jesse and Big Blade are both "fugitives" running from the cops. They get themselves into trouble and are taught by a particular person or vehicle of grace that they can not handle everything and they are weak not strong, allowing them to change.
I Highly recommend this story to the entire Loyola Academy student body. IT is a strong story with spectacular symbolism and deep meaning.