Good, Hardworking People Essay

2014 words - 9 pages

Margie Walsh, a single mother living in a blue collared neighborhood in Boston, struggles from a lack of paychecks as she is fired from her job at a dollar store for repeatedly being tardy. Margie spends a majority of the play “looking” for work, but she spends the beginning of the play looking up her old high school boyfriend, Mike. She tries to talk him into hiring her to work as his receptionist, however, Margie is very much unqualified for any position at Mike’s office. Margie does, however, shame Mike into inviting her to his birthday party, in a neighborhood that is very much more upper class than where she is currently living. She knows he does not want her there, but the possibility of finding someone to hire her at his party was the only thing on her mind. In the end, a lot of secrets and lies come out. This play is mostly about social class in America; stereotyping and class perceptions make their way into almost every scene and moment. Good People is a story painting a portrait of poor white working class Americans as they encounter the world of the “comfortable” professional class. The theme of this play is of “luck”, which is shown when the trio of friends and their scenes in the bingo hall, and when Margie challenges Mike to admit that despite all his hard work he is a very lucky man.
There are many forms of conflict that Margie deals with throughout this play. As the play opens, we are thrown into a scene with Margie and her young manager, Stevie. Stevie begins to let Margie go for her continuous tardiness to work. She keeps telling stories about his mother, and tries to completely ignore the fact that she is in the process of being fired. She even tries to negotiate a pay cut as low as $8.15 just as long as she can still stay there. I was beginning to think Margie may have attention deficit disorder with the amount of times she tried changing the subject, but she finally starts listening to what Stevie is saying and attempts to blame others for her tardiness. As much as I wanted to feel sorry for Margie, I couldn’t feel 100% sorry for her. She blamed her landlady, Dottie, for being late to watch Margie’s daughter, Joyce, and she even brought another co-worker into her situation. If Stevie talked to Margie many times before for her tardiness, and if she actually cared for her job, she would have tried harder to find someone more reliable to watch her daughter. If Margie took more intuitive in her life and stopped blaming others for her mistakes maybe she would not be in such a tight position. She could have even tried to take Stevie’s advice and apply for a job at Gillette, despite the fact that she might not even get hired there. Perhaps luck could have been on Margie’s side, and the hiring manager at Gillette could have seen some potential in her. Margie was quick to saying no to Stevie’s suggestion, but since times are so hard she should not say no to any type of job. I believe not all, but most, of the conflicts that occur in...

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