1. I believe that dreamers and eccentrics think outside the box of life. They aren’t afraid to be unique and express themselves. To be honest I believe that our culture somewhat does and doesn't encourage eccentricity and uniqueness. For example, I feel that when it comes to actors, celebrities, music artists, painters, etc., our cultures not only encourages their uniqueness but welcomes it. They give them recognition, their own shows and everything in between. However, I feel that when it comes to everyday people uniqueness is not encouraged. For example, at my high school if you weren’t one of the crowd you were a fish out of water. People would give you crap day after day until someone else didn’t conform to the norm. Many others would either “fight back” or do nothing. Personally I wouldn’t do anything because they weren’t worth it but I would let them know when I wasn’t in the mood for it. I would put up with verbal abuse and even on rare occasions physical abuse. The later I would vent to one of my closest friends.
2. So far my reading in Holding On is going good. I’m trying to be more active in my reading. I honestly find this book interesting and it actually holds my attention. The main strength that I think this book has is that it gives us insight to the lives of so many others and makes us open our minds to think. I don't think that this book really has much of a weakness other than the fact that the individual stories being a few pages long.
3. The profile that has stuck out the most to me as of now is "Steam Train" Maury Graham's. From his story I learned that you can always have people to count on and learn from. When he left his home he found a close nit community of hoboes. They taught him the ins/outs of being a hobo and became one himself. I would say that the main theme from “Steam Train’s” story is that you can always have people to count on. There are two kinds of people: the people who work hard for what they want and the people who just expect to get what they want for nothing.
“There’s several groups of people on the road. The biggest part of them is called ‘bums’, and they bum because they want something for nothing. They don’t do any work in this world. If you just sit down and depend on people to give to you, that’s a bum. If you bum people and beg people for something for nothing, that’s a bum. Now, the hobo would never do that. He’d say: “I’m a class a little higher than that. Have you got any work I can do?” And trade work for something to eat. You didn’t have to trade work for money then. There wasn’t any money. You’d rather get a meal for the work, or you’d rather get a pair of pants or an overcoat or a blanket. Usually in the old times that’s the way people paid the man- paid him in trade. You aim to work and that’s a work ethic.”
I picked this passage because it shows us that hoboes hold on to who they are and keep their dignity. It shows us even without having much they still try to find work to do in exchange for things they need. It backs up the fact that having a good work ethic will pay off sooner or later.