Aristotle’s world view is tinged and vignetted with so much black it might as well be pitch dark. Despite being the lightest and wispiest novel we have read thus far, Aristotle is one of the most cynical and desperate narrators thus far, rivaling even Giovanni. Perhaps it’s the teen angst (although he’s worse than Molly’s adolescence) or maybe it’s the fact he has three of his four major appendages in casts (I’ll concede to that, he’s got a right to be feisty), but dang—Aristotle is one heck of a ball of depressing. And I believe it is that pent up anger and hurt that masses up inside him and reverberates out of him as an unwelcome attitude. More often than not he comes off as a “wiseass” or some other ball of teenage angst that refuses to talk, but why (137)? Where is the angst deriving from?
Also, Aristotle consistently denies any semblance of caring after the accident, forbidding therapy or probing questions that are posed in hopes of expediting the healing process for mental health. That can be answered by human nature, sometimes we’re so incredibly blind to exactly what is best for us. But what’s odd is the fact that Aristotle seems aware of the fact that a counselor could help him. After Dante returns from his mental health appointment, he asks Ari if he is going to go. Ari simply responds with a “No” but it doesn’t seems it’s because he thinks it’s useless—he relegates his inability to go because of his legs (142). To me, it felt as if Ari knew it would help but he wants to feel the full wrath of his own perpetuated misery so he decides not to go (but also, I don’t have the solid-est of evidence for this so just kind of go with it).
Final point: Ari’s journal. He criticizes his writing in his journal as a “record of my own stupidity” (95). Why then does he return to writing his emotions as catharsis? If he doesn’t believe that it is valid, why does he use it. I think we all know the answer: teen angst. He says one thing and does the opposite. I guess I answered my own question. Oops.
Questions to ponder:
Why does Ari consistently hinder his own healing process? He might not physically alter anything, but his mental healing is most definitely hindered by his stubbornness.
Why is Ari so incredibly sad all the time? Is it just teenage angst or is there another element to his depression (y’know besides the invalid thing)?