Here’s the second installment of my Voice Week entries. You can see what it’s all about, and read the first installment in yesterday’s post. The voices are designed to be read in any order.
Guns in the Toy Box
Royal Marines Commando. Them’s no ordnary soldiers them. Makes im special. Top one percent thingy. 99.99% Need Not Apply.
Bloody love im. Couldn’t be more proud. Raised him up good, din I? ‘Fe wants to go bring peace to some Godforsaken shithole. Keep them rag’eds in line.
I knew, course. Makin’ guns out of his sister’s doll before e could walk. Bought ‘im a toy pistol when e was five; never looked back.
Just ‘slong as they bring ‘im back in one piece, course. Got ‘is Uncle wot’s a lawyer to write ‘em a letter. You bring my boy back OK.
24 responses to “Voice Week: Guns in the Toy Box #2”
I always wince when the accent goes with the stereotype. I just see so much of it, and it’s only a sliver of the truth. But people like this DO exist, I know some of them, and I get the feeling you may, too.
You’ve captured it brilliantly, if painfully. Aspects of this person disgust me, like calling people “rag-heads,” but I also get the impression that you’ve given the character depth beyond simple prejudices. The character seems to be a human, not just a straw-man.
I absolutely take your point about the stereotype. I’m certainly not breaking any ground with these pieces – just working on literally different voices and viewpoints, rather than character pieces. I’m glad you felt there was still some depth to this one, though.
And yes, the language is definitely hers not mine, but very common in context, so I felt it was right to use it.
And there is the answer to my unspoken question! I was pulling for this being a woman, but I wasn’t sure. 🙂
I love the contrast with voice #1. This guy sounds like a real “salt-of-the-earth, never had much education, proud his kid’s made something of himself” chap.
I’m putting his “rag-ed” comment down to the environment he was brought up in rather than any deep-seated racist leanings – that sounds right for the type of character he is.
Very enjoyable read!
Thanks draliman – I like your view of the character (although I had her as a woman; it doesn’t matter). I think you are right about her(his) view of the world and the language fitting into that.
Isn’t that weird? I was convinced it was a man! I’ve re-read it, though, and it could just as easily be a woman.
I’m looking forward to the next one.
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Love the stark contrast to the first voice, not just in the accent but in the perspective. Yet the similarity of emotion – just bring him home safe – really makes it striking. Differences in politics and education mean little against the similarities of a mother’s love.
I wonder how you’ll feel about the others over the next few days, Steph…
We shall see, we shall see.
Wow, great contrast! I really like this different, striking point of view. The whole mood about it is intriguing…I’m wondering how much this character plays into the subject’s life, as opposed to how much he thinks he does. Great read, can’t wait for more!
How much does any parent affect their child’s behaviour, evan? I often wonder that myself as a mother…
However much you decide to, really. Until they turn 18, it’s their decision, and by that time many children have already been shaped in their parents’ image.
This is a great contrast – such a thicker accent here, that makes it so real as if i hearing the person talk in front of me. And that is brilliant! Then the story says so much about the subject, I can’t wait for tomorrow!
That accent is intense. I love it. Very authentic.
i love nonstandard dialects written into narratives! so interesting and unique. i think it’s a good way to get intimate with a character quickly, like they’re talking right to your face.
How conflicting. I find this character crass, offensive and in-your-face, and yet you can really sense the love for her child that is imbedded in all mothers. It makes her simultaneously detestable and likeable. A very complex character. Nicely done. 🙂
Well based on your name, that kind of character should be right up your street, no?
Interesting writing with the dialect and attitude of the speaker. You can see through the bravado to the parent’s heart.
So this is how you spoke in the ‘old country’ before coming to the Americas and learned proper English? Of course, it’s only Canada… to speak it right, come south to me.
No and no, Ted! I’m glad you could see right through her – I am hoping a mother’s love is pretty universal in these pieces…
Oh Ted, you wouldn’t find this kind of attitude in Canada, especially when it comes to the damn military 😉 We’re a peaceful bunch, unlike you savages down south of the border…always invading. Tsk tsk tsk
redneck mama 🙂
What a great contrast to the first voice, looking forward to reading the rest. 🙂