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One Of These Days

A Character sketch of Gabriel García Márquez's character Aurelio Escovar from short story 'One Of These Days'
by

Caitlin Knight

on 18 September 2014

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Transcript of One Of These Days

Conflict; Person vs Self
Quote #1 analysis
Quote #2 analysis
Quote #3 analysis
Aurelio Escovar
Yet again, Escovar lies to the mayor. He states that he can't use anesthesia because he has an abscess. The mayor obviously suspects this is a lie but doesn't argue anyway. This further develops Escovar's character by proving that even if he will pull the mayor's tooth, he won't forgive him for the wrongs he committed by him; which we still don't know fully as of yet.
Escovar, with the revolver only a drawer away changed his mind. This is when the second conflict is shown. He knows that, as a professional, he shouldn't let personal feelings get in the way of his work. He takes one look at the mayor and he knows he can't refuse to help him. This shows kind aspects that before, we didn't see.
When Escovar's son tells him that the mayor is there to see him, he tells his son to lie. This is the moment the first conflict is shown. This shows the reader Escovar's dislike for the mayor. With five simple words the character is show to be angry and upset, primarily at the mayor.
A second conflict in the story is person vs themselves. This conflict is displayed with both the mayor and more importantly, Escovar.

Escovar is against the mayor. He doesn't like him and certainly doesn't want to pull his tooth. Yet, the moment he sees the mayor his decision changes. He is conflicted with the hate for the mayor and his duties as a dentist; in the end his decision was loyalty to his profession

The second person vs self conflict shown is the mayor coming into the office. The first sight of him in the story explains he dealt with the agony of his tooth for five days. This is proof that he was conflicted on if he should come to see the dentist, which he knows hates him, or deal with the tooth. The pain ended up winning this argument.
The first conflict that is announced is Escovar against the Mayor. For reasons unknown at first, Escovar is against pulling the mayor's tooth. He even goes as far as telling his son to lie to the mayor, which evidently didn't work. Even after he decides to pull the tooth is he still against the Mayor. Even lying about not being able to use anesthesia.
Conflict; Person vs Person
Escovar is a dentist without a degree; even without it he is is good at his job. Early morning is when he arises, every morning at the same time. He is also organized, showing symptoms of Obsessive-Compulsive disorder (OCD). The signs of his OCD are when he organizes his tools in size order, continuously pumps the foot drill even when he doesn't need it, and thirdly when he starts polishing the teeth. In the second paragraph one line states, '
He seemed not to be thinking about what he was doing, but worked steadily
' Which implies that this action is repetitive, every day, at six am when he opens his office.

Escovar is his own contrast. He doesn't forgive and holds onto his grudges, when he refuses to see the mayor is proof; he would rather the mayor shoot him then pull his tooth is evidence to this. Contradicting this, he is also a kind man that stays true to his morals. Even though he didn't want to even see the mayor, he pulled his tooth anyways; proving that he is a true dentist in ever sense of the career.
One Of These Days

Tell him I’m not here.

Quote #1
“It has to be without anesthesia,”
Quote #3
The dentist saw many nights of desperation in his dull eyes. He closed the drawer with his fingertips and said softly:
“Sit down.”
Quote #2
Quote #4
“He says if you don’t take out his tooth, he’ll shoot you.”
Quote #5
“Now you’ll pay for our twenty dead men.”
Quote #6
“Send the bill,” he said.
“To you or the town?”
The Mayor didn’t look at him. He closed the door and said through the
screen:
“It’s the same damn thing.”
Quote #7
He was erect and skinny, with a look that rarely
corresponded to the situation, the way deaf people
have of looking.
Quote #4 analysis
When Escovar's son repeats what the mayor says, it is shown that it's not just Escovar who is against the mayor; the mayor also has ill feelings against Escovar. The mayor either knows he can't, or chooses not to, deal with Escovar's lack of cooperation with the mayor's tooth, and Escovar's profession. It also shows insight to what the conflict between Escovar and the mayor is; the mayor is corrupt and Escovar is a mere dentist that can't say anything against him, which infuriates Escovar.
Quote #5 analysis
A single, but powerful line. This sets the last piece of the puzzle to what has Escovar so angry at the Mayor. This shows that because of the mayor, if it was directly him or just caused by him, twenty men of the town died. Unknown to the reader why or how, it is implied that the twenty men's deaths could have been avoided and stopped; yet the mayor didn't try stopping them.
Quote #6 Analysis

The mayor states that the town and him are the same thing, which further proves his corruption. It also implies that the mayor is stealing money from the town which is known by the rest of the town, but nothing can do anything about it. This adds more tension because is shows that the conflict isn't just between the mayor and Escovar but also conflict between the town and the mayor. Escovar's character is a representation as the people of the town, which changes the out look of the story's beginning
Quote #7 Analysis
The narrator's description of Escovar, when you first read it, seems like a normal description. But with the information given at the end it changes in meaning slightly. Escovar's character is tall, tall tends to be associated with pride. He is also thin, which tends to be associated with weak. These two descriptions of Escovar shows that the town is proud, yet it is weak against the corruption of the mayor. They can't defend themselves, (twenty dead men) Nor can they defend the town's wealth (It's the same damn thing).

The next part of his description, That mentions he has a look that rarely corresponds to the situation, this represents that even though the town's people knows that the mayor is stealing money from them they keep quiet about it. Pretend they don't know; didn't hear. They act deaf when the topic arises.
Conflict; Person vs Society
The third type of conflict, which isn't shown until the end, is the Mayor vs the people of the town. The town knows the mayor's dirty secret of taking their hard earned money but they must keep quiet. If they don't, then like the twenty dead men, they will end up dead as well. This shows a version of quiet conflict, and it brings a whole new tension to the story that wasn't previously there.
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