The Lemon Drops in “The Lemon Drop Kid”

Damon Runyan is robustly, and urbanely, funny; combining politeness with crossing lines, to classic comedy: But not all of his short stories are strictly comic. There are some serious tragic tales, mainly with tragic death in them, and the Lemon Drop Kid is one of them; for which I would like to review the lemon drops, in The Lemon Drop Kid, by Damon Runyan.

The lemon drop kid, on the run from the coppers at the Saratoga Race Track, finds himself in love with a girl in a nearby town, whereby he gets a job as a soda clerk, marries her, only to have her and her baby die on birth, because The Lemon Drop Kid, did not have the money to get her proper medical attention, for which he stuck up the Commericial Hotel, but it was too late; only to learn after a 2 year stint in Auburn Alabama, that someone owed him a lot of money.

One lemon drop is he couldn’t afford a doctor. In this day and age, several times, has a poor friend checked into the emergency room to receive urgent treatment, and not dealt with the bill. It is far more likely for one now a days, to have unpaid medical bills, than unpaid horse-tract debts. Charities, such as catholic charities, offer paperwork for poor hurt people to fill out, which can pay their hospital bills, and even tide over the loss of income.

That certainly is a lemon drop, that his love dies, with two or three years of his love, because he can’t afford a doctor. But let us also say, the game of love is filled with swoon, by which I mean, baby-producing haste; I mean there is a baby at the end of most love, especially this foolish kind played by previously criminal, and still poor, elements. If we were honest, that our matrix, generated by heaven, involving our representation of the kingdom of god, as fully human, dealt with something we wouldn’t reproduce or is what it is said to be, love, marriage, and its subsequent children, would be honestly reckoned, and in such honesty, I doubt there would be a loss of medical funds; so it is our precise dishonesty that causes these pathetic situations; and if the lord allows our sinful dishonesty in such prime relations, how can he not allow our economic lapses? Aren’t they part and parcell to the saccrificial nature to society? A nature we ignore or chalk up to chance, rather than see the heavenly design of evil upon our society?

Likewise, the poor girl, “deals cards off her arm, at the Commericial Hotel”, a reference to cheating for the house; that is not ethical at all. No good karma comes to it. How is her death not karmically reliant upon her immoral behavior. Even if not, what about her consistent mistreatment of society cheating them with cars? What does that say about the Lemon Drop Kid, known for his habit of lemon drops, his being attracted to that waywardness; even as he, earnestly took up working at the general store, to leave behind and avoid selling tips at the racetrack as a way to live, and see the world; but then his beloved still rubs elbows with crime. He is out of harm’s way, living low, while she still courts it?


Subliminal Gun Control in Damon Runyon’s The Hottest Guy in the World

When you have an old friend, whose a bit of a bully, and is trouble from more than one directions, for vast errors, among the diverse planes of trying to make money distributing what can’t, and shouldn’t be sold,  you have to wonder, should he get a gun? Because, he’s the type, whose too sweet to have a gun.

And yet you wonder, maybe having a gun can make a difference, even as a threat. Because in Damon Runyan’s, The Hottest Guy in the world, who is back in Manhattan and allegedly on the run for multiple bank robberies in multiple states; well, he checks in with Damon, who writes in the first person, and they go to see this fugitive’s girlfriend, and I forget why Damon Runyan is required for this; probably out of fear of being interrupted by the cops.

Whereas for me, I would not have a gun, because I believe I a smart enough to be able to reasonably talk with anyone coming at me with a gun; as I can try to explain the kingdom of god to him, and how that makes him really a mind operated by the Kingdom of Heaven, which knows this body he operates, really isn’t the kingdom of heaven, but transformed into the kingdom of god, because of our super sad universe.

Whereas a hot friend of mine, may not be so expressive and knowledgeable; thus, incapable of being reasonable, maybe they need a gun?

And yet, especially if something happened, a gun wouldn’t really help. Even hurting someone else, would feel bad, ad ultimately not be good; so what is the point of a gun, how could a gun help?

Well, so, they are walking and there’s a crowd above the post office across from madison square garden, where a gorrilla from the circus has escaped and climbed up on the roof, with a baby stolen from a young mother, along the way.

There, they see the old girlfriend, and go talk to her, and she is very concerned about the baby being held by the gorilla and waved to the crowd. So, the hot guy, Jules, takes out his gun, and aims and shoots the gorrilla right in the forehead, where he falls backwards with the baby landing on top of him perfectly safe. Jules was able to do this, the story goes, because he had spent the whole winter hiding out in an old warehouse near Montreal, practicing his shooting on mice, as the warehouse was far away from being heard.

It turns out, the baby, is the baby of his old girlfriend, with a childhood aquaintance who is now a cop and right behind him, saying, “I been following you since you got in, was going to arrest you, but that’s my baby you saved, so lets just get out of here.”

I suppose that is an example of being helped out by having a gun.

And leads to the logical wondering if merely having a gun, something of that power around, is beneficial to the soul?

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