Chapter 4 Notes from The Chosen

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The Chosen Chapter 4

Mr. Malter visits Reuven soon after Danny leaves him alone, looking more worn out than the previous day. Reuven tells his father that he looks outside at people who don't know how lucky they are. "'No one knows he is fortunate until he becomes unfortunate,' my father said quietly. 'That's the way the world is'" Chapter 4, p.78. Mr. Malter coughs perpetually throughout their conversation and tells him that he should become friends with Danny Saunders. The Talmud tells a person to find a good teacher and a good friend.

Topic Tracking: Friendship 4

A curtain rises around Tony Savo's bed, causing Reuven and Billy to worry about their roommate. Reuven puts on his teffilin to pray for his new friend. Danny arrives and Reuven calls him the messiah in jest. The two walk outside the room to give Savo quiet and begin to talk about literature. Danny tells him that he is bored of Talmud all the time and constantly reads literature and psychology books in the library. He is currently fascinated by Hemingway and knows that people look at him funny because they wonder what a person like him is doing reading so much. He believes his father frightens off the English teachers in his yeshiva from teaching anything worthwhile or potentially dangerous. This is the first time Danny has spoken of his secret desires. Reuven is confused by his words:

Topic Tracking: Intelligentsia 4

"I'm all mixed up about you. I'm not trying to be funny or anything. I really am mixed up about you. You look like a Hasid, but you don't sound like one. You don't sound like what my father says Hasidim are supposed to sound like. You sound almost as if you don't believe in God." Chapter 4, p.86

The boys debate their belief in God and then Reuven discusses his fascination with mathematical logic until his father arrives. Reuven introduces his new friend to his father; however, the two have already met. Mr. Malter is the man at the library who has been giving suggestions to and helping Danny read so many books without his father's consent. Reuven is in shock that his father has known Danny for so long without tell him; however, he believes it was for Danny to tell. When the two men leave, Reuven sees that a curtain has gone up around Billy's bed as well.

Mr. Savo returns with one less eye and Billy leaves the room hoping for the best with his new operation. The Dr. Snydman takes Reuven out and tells him that his eye should be fine and that he is free to go. Mr. Malter joyfully picks up his son from the hospital in time for a homecoming Shabbat.

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