Symbolism In The Story : A Short Story In 'Chacxulub'

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“Chicxulub,” a short story by T.C. Boyle, is story is about a couple, Ted and Maureen Biehn, getting a phone call late at night from the hospital saying their daughter, Madeline Biehn, had been hit by a car and is in surgery. They rush to the hospital and wait for hours, stressing about their daughter. Later, come to find out that the girl in the hospital was Madeline’s friend, Kristi Cherwin, who had Madeline’s I.D. so she could get into an NC-17 rated movie. Yet, come to find out later, their daughter was at home all along. Throughout the narration of the story, sections of the story are interrupted with facts and statistics about meteors; most specifically Chicxulub, the meteor that ended the lives of the dinosaurs. The story uses the elements of figurative language, symbolism and exposition in conjunction with the meteor and the story itself to convey a sense of how insignificant we are in the grand scheme of things. Boyle uses the meteor, Chicxulub, as a metaphor for the events that are happening and the fate of the Biehn’s as stated, “the rock is coming, the new Chicxulub, hurtling through the dark and the cold to remake our fate. But not tonight.” The meteor came crashing down and struck the dinosaurs’ lives, much like how the Biehn’s lives got struck with the phone call that something tragic has happened to their daughter. It is linked to every scene of the story; it leads to the next part of the story and cuts the story off to give the reader that feeling of the
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