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Lildove3
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Re: Chapter 4: Belinda's Pot

Wow it never occured to me Vivi and Ginny are possible one and the same..now alot of the unanswered
questions in my mind are coming together. Yes, the signs do point to the sisters Vivi and Ginny could be one.
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trishbrowning
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Re: Chapter 4: Belinda's Pot



Everyman wrote:


Tasses wrote:
... >Ginny is hiding something and whatever it is, it's not going to be pretty (little prediction there).

Vivi seems like a normal well-adjusted person.>

I agree with you about Ginny.

I don't so much agree about Vivian. I don't think the way she's taking over the house that Ginny has lived in for fifty years is normal or well-adjusted. It's unusually bossy and controlling.

I don't think she's taking over the house so much as she's behaving like anyone coming back to her house after 50 years, and she's horrified that her sister has sold off *priceless* pieces of their history, and Ginny defends herself in a rather flippant manner.
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pheath
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Re: Chapter 4: Belinda's Pot



gosox wrote:
I was wondering if anyone else had trouble with the following comment found on page 42:
"Second, [Maud would] do all my fighting for me. . . . . she wouldn't hesitate to glide into the event and, with either charm or aggression, sort it out, until I was labeled a sneak, which left me with the greater problem of judging what, and what not, to tell her."
Her comment of being labeled a sneak seem incongruous to her statement that Maud would do her fighting. What did you all think of that statement?


Message Edited by gosox on 03-04-2008 07:06 PM




I think that it was meant to imply that Ginny would "sneak off" to tell Maud about the problem rather than confronting it herself. Given Ginny's age at this time, it is more common for a child to wait until the moment has passed to report to their parents than to run immediately in plain sight the way a 4 or 5 year old would.
-Philip
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vivico1
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Re: Chapter 4: Belinda's Pot


pheath wrote:


gosox wrote:
I was wondering if anyone else had trouble with the following comment found on page 42:
"Second, [Maud would] do all my fighting for me. . . . . she wouldn't hesitate to glide into the event and, with either charm or aggression, sort it out, until I was labeled a sneak, which left me with the greater problem of judging what, and what not, to tell her."
Her comment of being labeled a sneak seem incongruous to her statement that Maud would do her fighting. What did you all think of that statement?


Message Edited by gosox on 03-04-2008 07:06 PM




I think that it was meant to imply that Ginny would "sneak off" to tell Maud about the problem rather than confronting it herself. Given Ginny's age at this time, it is more common for a child to wait until the moment has passed to report to their parents than to run immediately in plain sight the way a 4 or 5 year old would.


I think it meant she was a snitch. And snitches dont always sneak off to tell someone, when they are young, they will tell the nearest adult that will get you in trouble. Aside from that, this part says, not that Ginny was sneaking off to tell her mom, or even running to her right then to do it, it says Maud would come INTO the event and solve it one way or the other, most likely by making Ginny tell her what happened. If Ginny was not good at judging peoples reactions, why wouldnt she just tell Maud? She also said it left her with the greater problem of judging what to tell Maud or not and that might be literally a hard thing for her to do, not just a matter of a kid trying to figure out what was going to get her in trouble with the other kids or not, but really having a problem "understanding" what you tell and what you don't so you dont get hated.
Vivian
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Everyman
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Re: Chapter 4: Belinda's Pot

A sneak, used that way, is a peculiarly English usage. It means somebody who sneaks off complaining to authority about other people behind their backs instead of adopting a stiff upper lip. I took it here to mean that people assumed that Ginny was sneaking to her mother, otherwise her mother wouldn't know enough to come in and fight battles for her.

gosox wrote:
I was wondering if anyone else had trouble with the following comment found on page 42:
"Second, [Maud would] do all my fighting for me. . . . . she wouldn't hesitate to glide into the event and, with either charm or aggression, sort it out, until I was labeled a sneak, which left me with the greater problem of judging what, and what not, to tell her."
Her comment of being labeled a sneak seem incongruous to her statement that Maud would do her fighting. What did you all think of that statement?


Message Edited by gosox on 03-04-2008 07:06 PM


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Wrighty
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Re: Chapter 4: Belinda's Pot



trishbrowning wrote:

Everyman wrote:

Tasses wrote:
... >Ginny is hiding something and whatever it is, it's not going to be pretty (little prediction there).

Vivi seems like a normal well-adjusted person.>
I agree with you about Ginny.

I don't so much agree about Vivian. I don't think the way she's taking over the house that Ginny has lived in for fifty years is normal or well-adjusted. It's unusually bossy and controlling.

I don't think she's taking over the house so much as she's behaving like anyone coming back to her house after 50 years, and she's horrified that her sister has sold off *priceless* pieces of their history, and Ginny defends herself in a rather flippant manner.

Of course it would be a shock to come back and see all of the priceless furniture had been sold but she has been away and out of touch for 50 years. If it was that important to her than it seems like she would have visited and helped maintain the huge home and pay the bills. Vivi saw them as a part of their family, a reference to their past. To Ginny the furniture had just become clutter and a burden to clean for someone who lived alone with no help. 

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lmpmn
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Re: Chapter 4: Belinda's Pot

There have been several instances in the book up to this point where during her narration Ginny has capitalized certain words and phrases: "Normal Order of Things; Order (p. 42); Very Cross Indeed (p. 11); Entire Future (p. 15).  I wonder what the significance of this is?  I will keep my eyes out for more odd capitalizations.
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lmpmn
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Re: Chapter 4: Belinda's Pot

I find it very interesting that we've been speculating whether Ginny had anything to do with Vivi's fall and/or Maud's death-trip down the stairs for this reason:
 
In chapter 4 we learn of her first "small incident" with the girls at school.  She says she was trying to save flies from being squished for fun by Alice Hayward.  "Within seconds she'd managed to get the whole class laughing at me.  The incident instantly marked her out as a leader and sealed my fate, stamping out any hope I might have held of making friends--all because I wouldn't hurt a fly." (p. 42)
 
Would a girl who wouldn't hurt a fly, yet hunts insects with her father (who then kills and studies them), harm a human being?
 
Yet I question this too because from her own narration the reader observes she obviously has problems connecting to people emotionally.  So maybe it wouldn't be out of character for her to harm a person.
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Tasses
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Re: Chapter 4: Belinda's Pot



BookSavage wrote:


Everyman wrote:


Tasses wrote:
... >Ginny is hiding something and whatever it is, it's not going to be pretty (little prediction there).

Vivi seems like a normal well-adjusted person.>

I agree with you about Ginny.

I don't so much agree about Vivian. I don't think the way she's taking over the house that Ginny has lived in for fifty years is normal or well-adjusted. It's unusually bossy and controlling.

Although we have had our disagreements already, I am glad to see that someone else does not think that Vivi is normal.  I found her storming in after 40 years to very unusual and bothersome.





Perhaps I am assigning too much personal baggage to this story. To me, Ginny shows some signs of OCD or something similar and having been raised by a highly immobile person, I might be assigning Vivi my role: the fixer. But, I guess I'm not "normal" either!

If my hunch is correct (and I'm truly only at chapter six this morning), Vivi was in some way made responsible for taking care of her older (weak-minded or mentally ill) sister. Her running away might have been running from that responsibility and now she's realized the burden is still there.

Another thing I believe (and I think this is more concrete than just a hunch) is that Ginny is an unreliable narrator, at best. Her perceptions are just too narrow. She may turn out to be more than just unreliable ...
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Carmenere_lady
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Re: Chapter 4: Belinda's Pot

Towards the end of chapter 4 Ginny tells us that Vivien is "behaving as if she doesn't realize that she stood me up for tea.  Perhaps she doesn't?  I've forgotten how exhausting I find it to predict other peple's frame of mind or to assess their general humor."  I believe getting into peoples heads, trying to figure out a persons next move could have disasterous results.
 
A thought just occured to me as I type this, perhaps Viv is borderline Alzheimer's.  Maybe she didn't realize she missed tea.  Maybe that's why she came home.  I'll file this away and be alert to anything else Viv forgets.
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detailmuse
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Re: Chapter 4: Pizza

[ Edited ]
For me, one of the most telling passages about both sisters is from p.46, when Ginny realizes that Vivi brought the makings for pizza. Ginny wonders, Should I have thought of what we'd have for supper tonight, [Vivi's] first night? How did she know I hadn't?
 
Well, duh! :smileyhappy: Practical things -- social things -- don't occur to Ginny. And Vivi knows they don't. And Ginny hasn't a clue about how well people know her.


Message Edited by detailmuse on 03-05-2008 08:30 AM
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pheath
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Re: Chapter 4: Pizza



detailmuse wrote:
For me, one of the most telling passages about both sisters is from p.46, when Ginny realizes that Vivi brought the makings for pizza. Ginny wonders, Should I have thought of what we'd have for supper tonight, [Vivi's] first night? How did she know I hadn't?
Well, duh! :smileyhappy: Practical things -- social things -- don't occur to Ginny. And Vivi knows they don't. And Ginny hasn't a clue about how well people know her.


Message Edited by detailmuse on 03-05-2008 08:30 AM




I also thought her general reaction to pizza was odd. She had childlike excitement over the thought of getting to try pizza. For me this is just one additional quirk to Ginny's personality.
-Philip
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kiakar
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Re: Chapter 4: Pizza



pheath wrote:


detailmuse wrote:
For me, one of the most telling passages about both sisters is from p.46, when Ginny realizes that Vivi brought the makings for pizza. Ginny wonders, Should I have thought of what we'd have for supper tonight, [Vivi's] first night? How did she know I hadn't?
Well, duh! :smileyhappy: Practical things -- social things -- don't occur to Ginny. And Vivi knows they don't. And Ginny hasn't a clue about how well people know her.


Message Edited by detailmuse on 03-05-2008 08:30 AM




I also thought her general reaction to pizza was odd. She had childlike excitement over the thought of getting to try pizza. For me this is just one additional quirk to Ginny's personality.


Another quirk or fact, she sure hasn't been out no where in a while the way she describes never tasting pizza.
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NavyAirMom
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Re: Chapter 4: Belinda's Pot

As I was reading, I couldn't help but wonder if this "visit" is all in the mind of a dying old woman.  Ginny has to be senile after spending so many years as a recluse with very limited contact with the outside world.  Her arthritis surely has limited her mobility.  Did Vivi die when she fell off the roof?  Did Maud continue to blame Ginny?  Ginny then retreated in her own mind and kept Vivi alive in her head.  Now as Ginny gets closer to death, she gets "closer" to visiting Vivi.
I am anxious to read on.
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kiakar
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Re: Chapter 4: Belinda's Pot



NavyAirMom wrote:
As I was reading, I couldn't help but wonder if this "visit" is all in the mind of a dying old woman.  Ginny has to be senile after spending so many years as a recluse with very limited contact with the outside world.  Her arthritis surely has limited her mobility.  Did Vivi die when she fell off the roof?  Did Maud continue to blame Ginny?  Ginny then retreated in her own mind and kept Vivi alive in her head.  Now as Ginny gets closer to death, she gets "closer" to visiting Vivi.
I am anxious to read on.


That is very interesting! Your theory could be!
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umlaut
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Re: Chapter 4: Belinda's Pot



COCOSPALS wrote:
I think the passage about the roles that Vivi and Ginny assume, with Vivi being the leader and Ginny the follower is so true. I beleive these sisters are no different than any other siblings. The strong one will always be strong and the follower will continue to follow. It is the role they have grown up with and yes, most will exhibit traits at times to blow that theory out of the water, deep down they continue in those roles. I see it with my own children (all three adult age). The youngest is strong willed and independent until his sister arrives home from college and then he reverts into the little brother role and follows her lead. But I, as mom, did not see that until I read this passage.





I agree with you on this, i have an older brother who was/is outgoing, fun, adventures and social. While me on the other hand always lived in his shadow, i am not trying to be negative. But i agree when he is around, i took his lead. so far i can relate to Ginny and find it very interesting. I am looking forward to see how the story builds up around this family and what has caused Vivi to come back.
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fordmg
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Re: Chapter 4: Belinda's Pot



Everyman wrote:
>GMorrison wrote: I know it's extremely premature speculation, but I have to wonder if Vivi didn't actually die when she fell off the roof, and if her return isn't being imagined by a lonely, senile Ginny.

Wow. Now there's a theory that never even crossed the furthest reaches of my mind. I can't imagine that you're right, but if you are this is a much more bizarre novel than I think any of us ever conceived it could possibly be.


I don't think that Vivi is imaginary.  The two sisters went away to school, and it was Vivi who was expelled, not Ginny.
MG
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KxBurns
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Re: Chapter 4: Belinda's Pot



lmpmn wrote:
I find it very interesting that we've been speculating whether Ginny had anything to do with Vivi's fall and/or Maud's death-trip down the stairs for this reason:
 
In chapter 4 we learn of her first "small incident" with the girls at school.  She says she was trying to save flies from being squished for fun by Alice Hayward.  "Within seconds she'd managed to get the whole class laughing at me.  The incident instantly marked her out as a leader and sealed my fate, stamping out any hope I might have held of making friends--all because I wouldn't hurt a fly." (p. 42)
 
Would a girl who wouldn't hurt a fly, yet hunts insects with her father (who then kills and studies them), harm a human being?
 
Yet I question this too because from her own narration the reader observes she obviously has problems connecting to people emotionally.  So maybe it wouldn't be out of character for her to harm a person.


What a great observation! I think this character is a jumble of contradictions. Maybe the answer lies in the perception (and I'm speculating here, obviously) that the fly is harmless and without defense against the bully Alice Hayward. Maybe Ginny thinks its okay for a weaker being to act out against a bully but not the other way around?...
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dordavis33
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Re: Chapter 4: Belinda's Pot

Ginny and Vivi's school days sends up a red flag to me as to the accurateness of their inseparable relationship--according to Ginny. I am led to believe that they were allowed to have some interaction because they would meet in inconspicuous places so as not to draw attention. "...Maud overcompensated for my unpopularity, Vivien clearly couldn't cope with it..."(p.42). Granted Ginny may not be giving a reliable account of what happened in the past, but I am convinced that Vivi is self-absorbed just by her current-day actions alone. At school, Ginny had no one and the so-called help her mother gave her was atrocious! What parent teaches their child to hide as oppose to facing the problem?! This family showed the signs of first-rate dysfunction and it appears that Ginny took the brunt of it.
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m3girl
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Re: Chapter 4: Belinda's Pot

Comments from chapter 4...
 
I underlined the line - I'd say Maud was a nearly faultless woman - when I read it and now can't remember quite why - and with what I know now - that is quite an absurd comment - as poor Maud was quite flawed!!!
 
Clive and Maud treated the daughters differently and as a result - Vi ended up more like Maud and Ginny more like Clive.....when Clive agrees to let young Vi go to the city - I figure he does that so easily because she isn't of any interest to him, not like Ginny is with her interest in the moths...
 
The rekindling of their relationship does not have to be a recreation of the one from the past - but would Ginny be strong enough to change it???
 
Ginny did many things for her sister - quietly and selflessly (I think) and Vi never acknowledged it or appreciated it.....makes me not like her so much.  
 
I can't wait to hear what Vi has been up to all these years.....and why she came home.....
 
Makes me eager to go to chapter 5....
 
Susan
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