Quotation of the Day

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Justification of the Ending of 'The Fruitcake Special' by Frank Brennan

In conjunction with Eric's birthday, and today's lesson of revising short story 'The Fruitcake Special' by Frank Brennan, I've baked a cake for my kids today. (Thanks Sam Chef for your guidance!)

Do you like the ending of the story 'The Fruitcake Special'? Give your reasons.

Absolute yes! Below are my reasoning for liking the ending of the story 'The Fruitcake Special' by Frank Brennan. The resolution of the story revolves around 'Anna's resignation from her company' and 'the love between Anna and Armstrong'.  After being insulted by Mr Amos and Sabina, Anna threw the remainder of the special perfume Sabina and walked out of the office with dignity.  This is evident at page 56, quote 'I got out before Mr Amos lost control of himself again, out of the office and out of my career at Amos Cosmetics."  I like Anna for being strong and uphold her dignity, though it means abandoning her career.  Her courage to quit an unfriendly working environment will serve as a reference for me should I face similar encounters in the future. However, I must be certain I've the ability to work elsewhere.

Secondly, the ending where Armstrong, the pizza delivery boy turned 'Armstrong's Peachy Pizza's' owner, confesses his love for Anna and gives her flowers melts my heart.  As evident in Page 58, line 2 'He explained that he'd fallen in love with me when he first delivered pizza to us; but he wanted to be a success before asking me out.  He said I deserved no less.  Then he gave me some flowers.'

(Elaboration from my 16-year-old girl)  As a 16-year-old girl, I would be very much delighted and touched should a guy give me flowers, red roses especially, the symbol of love!  This is the reason why I like the ending of this story, Armstrong is a far-sighted man. He pursues the love of his life only after he knows he has a stable income to provide financially to the family.  I too, hope that I will meet such a romantic and matured man like Armstrong.

(Elaboration from my 16-year-old boys)  As a 16-year-old young man, I would definitely give out my first bouquet of roses to the woman I truly love.  Hopefully she will also be the woman I am going to marry and spend the rest of my life with.  Honestly, Armstrong has taught me to be a real man. I will only date a girl with my own hard earned money, certainly not going to bring her out for breakfast, lunch or dinner on my parents' expense. 

Last but not least, another reason why I like the ending of this story is that it portrays the values of 'True love should come naturally' and 'Do not be vain or be obsessed by physical beauty'.  As evident in page 58, the last sentence of this story 'I never really noticed before, but Armstrong is quite good looking: a bit short maybe, a little thin on top - but nobody's perfect.'  I am a proud Christian and believe God will provide only the best match for me.  I believe love cannot and should not forced.

(Elaboration from my boys' point of view) As a man, I will be turned off by girls who take the initiative to chase me.  It just feels wrong. I remembered the encounter where a girl placed a rose on my table, I left it behind, untouched. Therefore, when the right woman came along, only then will I be courageous and take the initiative to confess my love. Honestly, I hope my future half would not be extremely gorgeous as she might attract other guys' affection. Like Armstrong, I have my flaws. Nevertheless, I will try my best to win her heart.

(Elaboration for my girl's POV)  I like how Anna handled her love life. When her family wanted to match-make her with other 'perfect boy', she insisted on waiting for THE ONE.  This is evident in page 57, when Anna said "Momma, if it's Aunt Mimi with news of another 'perfect boy' for me, tell her I'm not interested."  Also, I love it when author Frank Brennan ends the story with '-but nobody's perfect.'  Indeed, no one is perfect, I am not, nor shall I demand for a partner with is perfect. This story taught me the importance of inward appearance as opposed to outward appearance.

Justification and ideas above are contributed by Xin Yi, Brandon, Eric and Chai Ching =)  Your comments are feedback are greatly appreciated!


  1. your students are proficient in English. They are able to justify their answers.
    Their answers sound like what we did for literature courses in uni, don't you think? Opinion and quotations from the text.
    You have done a wonderful job as a teacher!

  2. Yvonne, is this too high level for them? Well, they contributed the ideas, it's the teacher who string the ideas into sentences. hm...SPM requires textual evidence right?