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    #1

    Sticks and stones may break my bones

    Dyk Jr. walked through the village, heading toward the cemetery. The barking of dogs slowly dwindled. Dyk Jr. realized he had left his suitcase on the bus. Or bag.

    He stopped uncertainly.

    Groped in his pocket, counting how many cigarettes he had left. Six. Pick up sticks. Sticks and stones may break my bones. Enough to last him two hours. At most. Maybe he should just give it up and wait for the bus back to Chomutov?

    Well, as long as Iím here.

    Case Closed, Patrik Ourednik

    I don't really understand those lines, especially the red ones. Is the writer breaking the fourth wall? Or am I supposed to think that Dyk Jr. is talking to himself? What about the idiom? "Pick up sticks" may refer to his attempt to choose a cigarette from his pocket, however I need someone to elaborate on those, please.

  1. bhaisahab's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Sticks and stones may break my bones

    He is talking to himself.
    "Invading armies have no rights." Noam Chomsky

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    #3

    Re: Sticks and stones may break my bones

    Okay, but how about the red ones? I can't make out what they mean in this context.

  2. bhaisahab's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Sticks and stones may break my bones

    "Pick up sticks" follows on from "six" and comes from this childrens rhyme: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/One,_Two,_Buckle_My_Shoe The "sticks" leads into this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sticks...rsery_rhyme%29
    "Invading armies have no rights." Noam Chomsky

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    #5

    Re: Sticks and stones may break my bones

    Oh, okay. What about the last red sentence? It seems incomplete to me as I expect another clause after "as long as".

  3. bhaisahab's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: Sticks and stones may break my bones

    It depends on the wider context. What, according to the story, is he intending to do?
    "Invading armies have no rights." Noam Chomsky

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    #7

    Re: Sticks and stones may break my bones

    That's right, Geralt, it does need another clause after it — such '...I might as well try to do what I came for'.

    But he's talking to himself, so he knows what comes next without having to say it.

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