The Coalwood Way
by Homer Hickam

Chapter 15 ~ A Cute Couple

Discussion ~  Dreama experiences an "accident" but her lack of status as a "Coalwood woman" means that she probably won't get much medical treatment.  Sonny and Ginger have an intriguing moment, and Tag Farmer proves to be quite a psychoanalyst.

Writers' Workshop ~ 
    (1)  Why does the author not introduce the line that causes the title until the very end of the chapter?  How is the title both accurate and misleading?
    (2)  There is a fabulous sequence that begins when Sonny determines that Ginger is a "Rocket Girl" and continues until they are interrupted by a commotion upstairs.  Try to diagram the emotions that Sonny experiences as this conversation takes place.  Can we learn to use such patterns to create similar sequences in our own writing?

Freud's Couch ~ In this chapter, it really becomes Tag Farmer's couch.  He provides great insight into human nature by his observations about several characters.
    (1)  Why is Dreama going back with Cuke?  What does it say about her motivations and self-concept that she is willing to do so?  Why is she so desperate to belong in Coalwood?  Have you ever felt extremely desperate to belong to a group or situation?
    (2)  Cleo Mallett  is predicted to keep trying to drive Dreama away.  Why is Cleo so motivated to do so?  What is so unlikeable about Dreama that Cleo would feel this way?  Have you ever been driven out of a group by someone like this?  Have you ever tried to oust someone else?  Why can't we just let people be?
    (3)  Tag warns Sonny not to hang out with the Junior Engineers.  Where does he imagine that might lead?  Why does he care about the directions Sonny might take?  Why would he imagine that Sonny is intrigued by the Junior Engineers anyway?
    (4)  When Tag says that Sonny and Ginger make a "cute couple" has he finally missed the mark?  When Sonny replies that they are "just friends" is he wrong?  Why do people use these terms?  How often are those term simply wrong?

Mountaineer Morality ~  none for this chapter

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