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One of the marvels about Ernest Hemingway are the similarities that can be found throughout his different works It does not matter whether he has written a short story or a book since there are certain writing elements that are vital to Hemingway and his writing The connections to be found by juxtaposing Cat in the Rain and A Clean Well-Lighted Place will be examined and by focusing attention on recurring topics subtly implied in the stories such as existentialism where the meaning in life or lack thereof is put forth The parallels between his writings will become clear and it will be easier to distinguish which topic is more prominent within the story In both the Cat in the Rain and A Clean Well-Lighted Place there is emphasis on the emptiness life or the nothing however it is expressed in distinct ways in each story The emptiness in A Clean Well-Lighted Place is evident in the first page of the story when the two waiters are having a discussion about an elderly man that visits the caf at night One waiter comments on the customer and says Last week he tried to commit suicide 380 Sadly suicide is the ultimate ultimate meaning permanent action that cannot be revoked unless you survive and is thus taken only after life seems devoid of meaning When asked as to why the old man would commit suicide the waiter replies that it was over nothing since he has plenty of money 379 This is the first time in the story that the idea of nothing is introduced The notion is put forth by one of the waiters that if the old man is trying to killing himself while he is more than just financially secure he must have been motivated by an insubstantial reason But in the end the old man did try to commit suicide while he had the basic necessities of life since if he has
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