Reviewing “The Hit Man”

Hey >.>  “The Hit Man” is a genius story written by T.C. Boyle in 1977. This blog post is only made possible by his mind and literary work of course. So, this is what happened…

It was Reading Across America Day, and I needed a juicy book to sink my talons into. I went to my teacher– the magnificent Clinnesha Sibley– who had recommended me a book of short stories by a man named T.C. Boyle, the book titled The Human Fly and Other Stories. Next thing I know I’m losing my marbles over the stories I’m reading from the book. 

From the anthology of short stories, I chose “The Hit Man” to write about today because it is so simple yet so conveying. (Above is a link which provides an online copy of the story. You won’t get a virus by clicking it, just a great read. Here it is again in case you missed it the first time 😉

A Disclaimer: I am no professional story reviewer. I am simply sharing what I stumbled upon and thought to be a bomb read.

“The Hit Man” is a compelling story of a man’s entire life. The main awe factor is the way in which the story is written, which is in these sections. As you may have seen or read from the links provided, we are introduced into the story by an unnamed narrator who recalls moments from The Hit Man’s life. (The main character is named The Hit Man.) He continues revealing this mysterious Hit Man by small snippets of information. Some sections are on the chunkier side and others are only one sentence, and that’s all they need.

This works so well. What I thought at first would become choppy, turned into the opposite. The story flowed effortlessly which was achieved by keeping all the fragments of The Hit Man’s life in chronological order. Sections tying into one another helped execute Boyle’s plan as well.

One example of this is with the “Peas” section. I thought The Hit Man becoming frustrated with peas was Boyle trying to show The Hit Man’s humanity. It was even kind of funny to me. However, after reading on to the “Moods” section, I see it is his short temper that was being spotlighted.

There was also a lot of imagery that compared The Hit Man to the Grim Reaper. Throughout, The Hit Man is constantly being recognized by his black hood. Another reference is when The Hit Man receives a golden scythe trophy. He also is thought to be this hellish character as he “pets” a three-headed dog after raking leaves on his lawn and igniting them.

This only further helps build the personality file of who The Hit Man is, an unstoppable and dangerous man. I think it was a smart choice to do this because since there isn’t much space for character building through the section storytelling, it helps readers to already have a foundation laid. That way, they are able to quickly absorb The Hit Man’s aura and move on to finding out even more about him.

There is one thing I didn’t quite get…I hate to even say this…It was the “Talk Show” section. I don’t have much to say on it because I just wasn’t sure what its purpose was. Also, I was curious about the logistics behind The Hit Man revealing his identity; however, it was still very interesting to read.

Overall, “The Hit Man” was such a fun thing to start with for my journey into reading more often. Of course, I highly recommend you give it a try. Be safe out there and try not to make too many enemies because you never know…just kidding. But seriously be safe 

A Realization of Mindsets

I’ve said it before on here I believe, but I am on this whole self-love journey. Only now am I realizing it’s not called a journey because its easy, but quite the opposite. It was a silly thing to assume, I admit. For anyone out there though, who may be struggling as well, I wanted to share some things I have realized so far that may help. 

There have been moments of relapsing and I can’t help but wonder every time if I am taking steps back instead of forward. It sometimes will send me down this Alice in Wonderland rabbit-hole mindset of me trying to piece together what’s going on. Am I okay? Why do I feel bad? What started this? How quickly can I make it stop? 

It’s not helpful. I can tell you right now that the worrying doesn’t help. It’s hard to stop it completely and I can’t say for certain I ever have. There is one thing I came to see though. 

Act like you’re walking through the woods. You come to a part where there is no visible path in sight. You are stuck. Well, sometimes you have to take two steps back to see a bigger picture of the landscape, so you find your new path that allows you to take ten more steps forward. Our anxiety or problems can blind our intuition of what they know to be true and mask our hindsight. It’s not a sad truth to just deal with because that’s how we are built, but it’s something to make us keep questioning. That part of us wants us to get stuck again and again so we keep learning new and seeking out new paths to evolve with. 

Your mindset on your outlook can be the biggest decider of how something will turn out for you. You could just stay stuck in the woods if you think that’s life, or you can find that new path. As I stated before, it’s not easy. Somedays I’m just building a campsite and giving up looking for that path, whereas others I have two machetes in hand tearing down anything in my way and carving my own way. The point is to try not and stay at the campsite too long. We’ll miss you too much, and trust me. My search teams will find you so you might as well come along  🙂

This is all one giant comparison of a time in the woods to something as grand as life. I hope maybe you can find something of value in this. I tried not to sound too cheesy with any “I’m here for yous” -even though I am-.- Just remember to keep your mindset where you want your day or events to go. I think I said this in a previous blog- but in case I didn’t- Oprah said to write down five things at the end of the day that you were grateful for. It can be the smallest things. For example, I’m grateful I had the power to brush my teeth today. Literally anything. She said that slowly your mind will start shifting to a whole new mentality that will start to focus more on what lifts you up in life, what you’re grateful for. That’s not a bad goal. Everyone should want to strive for that brain pattern because it will make your life stellar. 

Here’s a little video for you. The words are what I also am trying to get across. The song is “WANNABE” by the group ITZY. If you don’t know the language then turning on subtitles may be beneficial. ;P

If K-Pop isn’t your gig, here is another video of another great example by the greats. ♥ This is “Rain On Me” by Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande. Have fun! Maybe it’s raining in the woods too. Maybe you’d rather be dry, but at least you’re alive ♥