Thursday, February 26, 2009

Vocab Splurge and What's up with Sweet Cakes?

The first time when Tea Cake's actions occurred to me as bizarre was when he left Janie and pillaged her $200 from her secret hiding spot. Janie's greatest fears finally came to mind after all her friends and neighbors caveats that this kind of thing would happen. Janie worried into the rest of that day and the entire night. Tea Cake's absence jaded Janie and caused lassitude to permeate throughout her body. I could not understand why Tea Cake would leave without telling her and why he took the money without her consent. What surprised me even more was when he came back and explained what happened. His story led me to feel suspicious about his actions and why he didn't just leave an innuendo of where he was going if it wasn't such a big deal. I find Tea Cake to be a very odd character and his nature a strange one for any woman to fall in love with. First of all he is a gambler and says he has a proclivity, or possibly a propensity for the game. Gambling usually leads to a road of decadence which makes me wonder why Janie still loves to be around a guy who gambles with her money. Most of the time Tea Cake is affable and sometimes too friendly. Janie gets jealous when Tea Cake seems to be flirting with a chubby chick and scolds him for being inconsiderate of her feelings.

What hit me next was when Mrs. Taylor described Tea Cake as coarse and "too black" and also attempted to set up Janie with her brother to meet. Tea Cake, who was in the next room being a creeper, overhears. His next action was to scourge Janie for doing absolutely nothing and to show Mrs. Taylor that he is the boss. I couldn't believe a strong woman like Janie would take it without reacting but she just took it and said nothing. I supposed love has that affect on people but I expected better from Janie to notice the out of the ordinary. Her laborous and provincial life with Tea Cake is patently anomalous especially for a woman of her wealth and beauty. Tea Cake tends to act differently when not around Janie and he admits that he has bad habits. For example, he starts a fight just to ruin Mrs. Taylor's restaurant and to try to dissipate her from the town. Clearly an ignoble act, yet Janie does not mind that her husband acts immaturely when she is not around. Tea Cake is a character that truly disconcerts me because one moment he is a sweet beneficent husband and the next he debases himself by beating his wife just to show off his power.

Classmates, I remonstrate you all to not feel jealous for my impressive composition of twenty-one vocabulary words. Hohohohohoho, this post is so 1337. Also, I welcome a discussion about why Tea Cake acts the way he does and is his tender care towards Janie enough to disconcern his bad qualities?


  1. I cannot lie, this post was absolutely littered with vocabulary words. But the use of ho ho ho, is completely unnecessary. I mean seriously who are you Santa Claus? Laugh like a real man.

    But other than that, I agree completely with your observations. I noticed the same things and actually wrote about them in a blog entry later. I'm glad that I'm not the only one who thinks Tea Cake is not as good as everyone works him up to be.

  2. I agree Marco, I have to say I am not a fan of Teacake. I tried really hard to take an optimistic view on him, but it's not easy.

    I feel like Teacake uses his charisma to his advantage and I find this frustrating. I think the only logic behind most of his actions is immaturity and selfishness.

  3. Well put Tien. Ho ho ho is pretty ridiculous.

    I agree that Tea Cake seems to put on a front. He is deceptive in his activities, his values, and how he feels for others, especially Janie. I think Tea Cake views Janie, in some ways, as broken, and therefore he can assert total control over her. He is blind to Janie's true personality of a headstrong, obstinate woman who will not stand for being trampled.

    Tea Cake's actions support that he lacks confidence. Most people would take the hit after overhearing what Mrs. Taylor had to say. However, he insisted on asserting his strength and validity as a person..

    Another note: is there a way to be "too black"? I wonder what Chris Rock would have to say about that.

  4. Another note: is there a way to be "too black"? I wonder what Chris Rock would have to say about that.

    hahaha nice katie.

  5. I still disagree that Tea Cake does not appriciate Janie and is bringing her down. He does have bad habits, like gambling, but his flawed personality makes him a better match for Janie because he is able to be forthright about his shortcomings where as Joe Starks hid them until Janie dragged them out for the town to see, thus destroying his false sense of reality.

    Tea Cake, on the other hand, is the one who points out to Janie everything that is wrong with him, especially his coarseness. It is this trait that Mrs. Turner uses to try to convince Janie that Tea Cake isn't good enough for her. So although his reaction in briefly beating her is obviously one of his vices, it is also somewhat understandable to us and, more importantly, Janie understands that he does care about her. So although he isn't always a perfect husband, who could be? At the time, beating your wife was an extremely common occurrence. The fact that Tea Cake does it once and other characters point out how light the beating was and how Tea Cake doted on her afterward shows that, considering the time period, Tea Cake is a wonderful husband to Janie.

    Although we can't excuse Tea Cake's actions, I really feel that he helps her more than he hinders in allowing her to have her self-discovery and feel passionately about him.