Over the course of the story, told in fragments separated by white space, the babysitter will invite her boyfriend Jack over, and not invite him over. Jack will call her and it will go well and it will go poorly. Jack will come to the house with his friend Mark and they will watch television together, and they will rape her, and Jack will prevent Mark from raping her, and the babysitter will seduce them into a threesome, and they will be interrupted by Mr. Tucker, who has come home to seduce the babysitter.
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Over the course of the story, told in fragments separated by white space, the babysitter will invite her boyfriend Jack over, and not invite him over. Jack will call her and it will go well and it will go poorly. Jack will come to the house with his friend Mark and they will watch television together, and they will rape her, and Jack will prevent Mark from raping her, and the babysitter will seduce them into a threesome, and they will be interrupted by Mr.
Tucker, who has come home to seduce the babysitter. They will be outside looking through the window when Mr. Tucker comes, and they will be inside on the couch with the babysitter when Mr. Tucker comes, and they will run away and Mr. Tucker will kick them out and rape the babysitter himself, and they will peacefully watch television while Mr. Tucker goes to the bathroom. Tucker will not find them at all. Everyone will take a bath, and will not take a bath.
On the television, one of a number of programs will play: people will fight and murder each other and make love. The babysitter will drown in the bath and the baby will choke on its diaper pin and the babysitter will do the dishes before Mr.
Tucker drives her home at the end of the night. In the end, the babysitter will be dead, along with all three of the children, and she will also be just waking up after dozing in front of the television at the end of an uneventful evening. You see what I mean. As you might imagine, the story is terrifying. Sometimes it is also funny. It is told by a third person narrator, but close behind the consciousness of multiple characters: the babysitter, Mr. Tucker, Mrs. Tucker, Jack, the children, even the television.
But Coover keeps revising the turn of events, presenting multiple possibilities for every character and every moment, without weighting one over another. Everything that could happen with these scattered characters over these few hours does happen.
Which also means it does not happen—because of course not everything can. Are we sure about that? Tucker and not ready to go. Like, all the time! Coover flouts the rules, and in doing so has written a story about story. It not only forces us to think about fiction, about how stories are put together, but it also gives us all the enjoyment that one—or several—conventional and suspenseful stories might provide.
It offers a critique of the concerns of contemporary life, points out the superficialities of lives whose most intense relationships seem to be with the TV. In the place of the purified, monolithic, and officially sanctioned myths of the dominant order, in place of rarefied stories with a moral message, in place of realism or sexploitation or suspense, Coover offers a piece of fiction that gives all the versions, that offers all the merry and not so merry possibilities of life.
It is a story that quivers with possibility without ever gelling into one narrative. The very experience of reading the story proves its metafictional point. You think you can figure it out, pick out the secret strand of the actual within all the red herrings and fantasies.
This story exposes our stubborn insistence about what a story is. No, follow me! Believe us! Indeed, following the path of a single character through this story might be possible, but followed together, the contradictions tangle, form a dense web, and are finally impossible to tease apart. I desire an outcome. Not only a particular outcome please, let her be safe! Coover does not satisfy this desire.
And yet, there is another desire that he does satisfy. As William H. In this sense, the television is particularly important. Is the story sexist? But these fantasies are not exactly indulged—the story paints the men as monsters and creeps making calls and hanging up, their faces dodging in and out of the window , and also allows the babysitter some creepy fantasies of her own perhaps she does seduce that little boy.
In some ways, the story is a warning: sure, buddy, you might get what you fantasize about—but everyone might also end up dead. Is it worth it? In the end, we are offered two competing possibilities for the final moments of the night. Tucker hovering over her. Tucker asks. Tucker is watching the report of the ball scores and golf tournaments. Tucker exclaims from the kitchen.
But what can I say? But the first option is realistic; the second fantastical—even despite the hilarious surreality of the ordeal Mrs.
On the Destabilizing Brilliance of Robert Coover’s “The Babysitter”
Robert Coover She arrives at , ten minutes late, but the children, Jimmy and Bitsy, are still eating supper, and their parents are not ready to go yet. From other rooms come the sounds of a baby screaming, water running, a television musical no words: probably a dance number — patterns of gliding figures come to mind. Mrs Tucker sweeps into the kitchen, fussing with her hair, and snatches a baby bottle full of milk out of a pan of warm water, rushes out again. He smiles toothily, beckons faintly with his head, rubs his fast balding pate. Bewitched, maybe?
Babysitter Cover Letter Babysitter Cover Letter Babysitters provide care to children when their parents or family members are absent. Typical duties of these employees include preparing and serving meals, changing diapers and clothes, following specific dietary rules, bathing and dressing children, doing housekeeping tasks, organizing activities, teaching children social manners, administering medicines, and helping children with homework. Babysitters may also be required to complete other related duties, such as feeding pets, or running errands for the family. Based on our collection of cover letter samples for Babysitters, the most sought-after qualifications in the field include: A caring personality and empathy Physical fitness Stamina and resilience to stress Effective communication Previous experience working with children Dexterity and problem-solving orientation Patience and being able to discipline children without using inappropriate methods Comparable Babysitter skills can be seen in the example cover letter displayed below. For help with your resume, check out our extensive Babysitter Resume Samples.
The Babysitter Summary