“The Semplica- Girl Diaries” by George Saunders is a telling-tale about a devoted father who has insecurities about his image within the community but will go above and beyond to please his wife and children. The format of the story showcases this family who are borderline poverty with an optimistic father who wants his family at all times to believe that everything will be alright. To make matters worse his older child Lily has a rich friend and a looming birthday which puts pressure on the family. I have choose the following passage below because I feel that this is a pivotal moment in the story where after receiving Lilly’s expensive birthday list of possible gifts she wants to receive her father is put into a predicament to have to way out his options.
“But problem remains: Visa full. Also AmEx full and Discover nearly full. Called Discover: $200 avail.If we transfer $200 from checking (once paycheck comes in), would then have $400 avail. on Discover, could get cheetah. Although timing problematic. Currently, checking at zero. Paycheck must come, must put paycheck in checking pronto, hope paycheck clears quickly. And then, when doing bills, pick bills totalling $200 to not pay.To defer paying.
Stretched a bit thin these days.” (Page 8)
The following passage in my personal opinion shows how much debt this family is in, although at all times he wants his children to believe they are living alright they are not. The emphasis on “once paycheck comes in” showcases how this family is living paycheck to paycheck. But this passage also shows how much love and devotion Lilly’s father has in terms of wanting to do anything possible to make his family happy, even if in the long haul he’ll have to pay the consequences later. I also believe that actions like this might give an insight on why the family is living at a poverty level, by not properly spending money and wanting to please everyone ultimately puts a strain on him financially as well as mentally.