So, I read the Eudora Welty story this evening before a friend from work came by to pick up his grill. He’d left it over at my house after a grill-fest we through for another friend’s bachelor party back in December. That night, we had 5 grills and my pig pit heated up and close to 40 pounds of meat to split among only about 10 people; and the guest of honor passed out and then woke up two hours later to urinate on my blueberry bushes, killing one – good times! In reminiscing about this, though, I got onto a kick about “Why I live at the P.O.” and the self-centered nature of Sister. The reason I got onto this was that while both of them were centered on a single individual, the grill-fest was an expression of love towards that person and the Welty story was all about self-serving, self-righteous, self-centered sympathy. I do not feel bad for Sister because she doesn’t tell the whole story.
Am I supposed to pity her, or am I supposed to realize that she really is “one-sided?”
At the start of the story, Stella-Rondo gets just as much grief, if not more, than Sister, but Sister just can’t deal with not being the center of attention, and so inserts herself into every situation. Well, if you’re going to make yourself the center of attention, then expect what you get, good or bad. There’s so much in this story that reflects that Sister’s opinions of Stella-Rondo are really everyone else’s opinions of herself that I cannot describe them all. It is not her family that ultimately rejects Sister, but Sister who ultimately rejects her family. By the time I finished reading this story I just wanted her mother to slap her again.