In this short essay, Apple gives us a profile of his grandfather. It is clear that he loves his grandfather, and the title suggests that they had a good and close relationship. But Apple doesn’t shy away from giving us a textured, full picture. Note in particular the word choices in the second paragraph: “argued”; “not a gentle…”; “screamed at his fellows in the bakery”; “lover of strife.” In his sleep, he explodes “in anger” and curses in both English and Yiddish. The goal of a profile is to get the reader to know the subject, without sugar coating. By showing peoples’s flaws as well as their more positive characteristics, a reader will grow to know them.
I would also like to point out the turn on page 64. Given its content, we might have expected this to be about the grandfather’s aging and inevitable decline. When Apple’s wife is diagnosed with a neurological disease, it is his grandfather who becomes a caretaker; perhaps not what we expected. That little turn is a surprise for the reader.
In your response below note any aspects about the essay you find compelling. Do either the author or his grandfather make you think about relationships in your own life? How do you feel about the grandfather by the end?
Please post by Tuesday, April 7