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TUESDAYS WITH MORRIE FREE ONLINE STUDY GUIDE
The Eleventh Tuesday
Morrie’s disease is starting to hit his lungs, which is how he predicted he would die. The physical therapist teaches Mitch how to slap Morrie on the back to break up the poison in his lungs.
Mitch and Morrie discuss our culture and the shortsightedness of most people.
Later that afternoon, Mitch and Connie watch the verdict of the O.J. Simpson trial.
In this chapter Mitch has admitted to becoming more open in showing his affection and accepting Morrie’s sickness. He states that he regularly holds Morrie’s hand, is comfortable around his catheter bag, and does not mind the smell of the room that Morrie is living in. These are all things Mitch said would have otherwise made him very uncomfortable. It seems as if Mitch is benefiting and learning from Morrie’s lessons.
During this lesson Morrie and Mitch discuss our culture. Morrie feels that people become mean when they are threatened. He feels that our culture threatens us because it creates chaos and fear of losing our jobs, not earning enough money or not staying thin enough. Morrie feels that we should obey the small rules such as speed limits and red lights; however he feels that we should create our own subculture determined for each individual: how we think, what we value etc. He feels that these characteristics should be chosen specifically by each individual and that one should not let a society chose for them.
Morrie also feels that we, as a society, do not like to believe that we are as much alike as we are. He feels that if we all saw ourselves as similar to one another, then maybe we would all be eager to join together as one family.
Later that afternoon, Mitch and Connie watch the verdict of the O.J. Simpson trial, the “Trial of the Century” (158). This trial was a major milestone in pop-culture; people watched the trial daily, read about it and basically the entire nation watched the verdict. It is only fitting that Morrie was in the bathroom as the verdict was announced on the news. This is simply another example of how Morrie wanted to create is own subculture, and not let society sway his opinions or waste his time.
The Audiovisual Part III
Ted Koppel and the “Nightline” crew come back for a third and final interview with Morrie. Morrie is much sicker now and is not sure he can even do the interview.
Ted Koppel and Morrie do the entire interview from Morrie’s study, since he is confined to his chair. He is noticeably weaker but successfully completes the interview.
Aside from the millions of lives Morrie has touched, through television, teaching, and his family and friends, he has now touched Ted Koppel. Koppel now refers to Morrie as his friend and he kissed Morrie upon greeting him.
During the interview Koppel asked Morrie if he was afraid of dying. Morrie, true to form, explained how he was less afraid now that it is near. He enjoyed letting go of the outside world, the newspapers and television, and enjoyed listening to music and watching the seasons change through his window.
Morrie tells Koppel, “...living means I can be responsive to the other person. It means I can show my emotions and my feelings” (162). Throughout his life, we saw how Morrie valued compassion and showing emotion and feeling towards others. Since Morrie lacked this so much as a child, he lived his whole life continuously offering emotion and feelings towards others. He feels that when he can no longer do this, it will be the end of his life. For he lived emphasizing so much importance around this notion that he feels if he cannot offer his emotions and feelings toward others, that he should no longer be able to live.
The Twelfth Tuesday
It is the Twelfth Tuesday and Mitch and Morrie discuss forgiveness. The whole time, Mitch rubs lotion on Morrie’s feet to relieve them of some pain.
Morrie tells Mitch a story in which he never forgave one of his friends for an incident which happened years ago. He then continued to say that we also must forgive ourselves for the things we feel we should have done.
At the end of the chapter Morrie tells Mitch that if he could have had another son, he would have liked it to be Mitch.
The chapter flashes back to a conversation between Mitch and Morrie when Morrie found the place in which he would like to be buried. It is on a hill beneath a tree and overlooking a pond. He hopes that Mitch will come visit him and tell him all his problems.
In this chapter we learn that Morrie did once have spite and pride towards one of his old friends. His friend Norman and his wife moved away to Chicago. When Morrie’s wife had to have a serious operation they did not receive as much as a phone call from Norman or his wife. Morrie became very angry with him and never treated their friendship the same. Morrie regretted never reconciling with Norman and accepting his apologies, especially when he died of cancer.
Morrie feels that as much as it is important to realize when we should have forgiven someone else, we should also forgive ourselves for this mistake. He states that we must acknowledge what it is we wished we would have done, and then forgive ourselves for it.
Morrie also states that he feels sad that his time is dwindling but he is also grateful with the chance he has to “make things right” (167).