The Random and the Purpose--SPOILERS

Discussion in 'Insomnia' started by katarina, Mar 23, 2014.

  1. katarina
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    katarina New Member

    Hi everyone!

    I read Insomnia a while back and enjoyed it a lot. There's one thing that kept me wondering though (and I've asked the Constant Readers over at the SK group at Goodreads already, sorry for cross-posting), perhaps someone here has some insight into this.

    I should mention that I have not read the Dark Tower series.

    Ok, here goes:

    When Ralph and Lois has the conversation with Clotho and Lachesis at the hospital, they (Clotho and Lachesis) explain the concept of the Random and the Purpose. They also mention that some people (events?) are not claimed by either the Random or the Purpose, as in the case Ed Deepneau. Atropos has cut Ed's "balloon string" which has somehow upset things since he wasn't claimed by either from the beginning.

    My question is: If Ed wasn't claimed by either the Random or the Purpose, and Atropos serves the Random, doesn't the fact that he cut Ed's life string now means that he IS claimed by the Random?

    Is the concept of the Random and the Purpose elaborated more on in the Dark Tower series? Or any other book related to it?
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  2. Dana Jean
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    Dana Jean Beta Tester/Moderator Moderator

    Welcome to the board! Someone will be along to chat about this.
  3. king family fan
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    king family fan Prolific member

    Welcome,glad you are joining us.
  4. skimom2
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    skimom2 Just moseyin' through...

    I don't remember the Random and the Purpose in any other book (though there's a faint chime about Hearts in Atlantis--might be worth it to look there).

    I think the claiming has to happen early in life. Since Ed wavers and then falls in his late 20s-early 30s, he's a free floater. Even though Atropos is influencing him, he could change. He is still full of possibility!
  5. doowopgirl
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    doowopgirl very avid fan

    Welcome. Good questions. I don't remember Random being mentioned anywhere else.
  6. GNTLGNT
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    GNTLGNT Idiot in Situ and Unholy Devourer of Cookies

    ...Hi honey, and welcome/shmellcome!!...to answer in short...no, Random & Purpose by those names do NOT appear elsewhere in Steve's work...and ED?...he was "undesignated"...a blank canvas and the only such on Earth at the time, available for "claiming" by either side..so IMO, once "Baldo" got to him...he indeed had "chosen sides" so to speak...
  7. Walter Oobleck
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    Walter Oobleck keeps coming back...or going, and going, and going

    Reminded of the Green Man...remember him? What Ralph ask the C.K.? If he knew him or not? The Big Tuna acted confused and said he knew all the shape-changers in Derry? Only, when reading it one sensed he did not know the Green Man. Recall an old thread here. Was the Green Man a force for good...or evil. Maybe the poster used the word "bad". And then I consider that bit about the three wise men, going to Herod, and the result? Dead babies. Wise? Seems like in Insomnia...and elsewhere...The Green Mile for one...there is the idea that a third force could be at work, characterized as a laughing kind of...demon or something.

    Don't recall the conversation in the hospital in detail...although I recall that there seemed to be some sort of confusion on the part of the good doctors, the same sort of confusion expressed by the Big Tuna in the Sky. Dunno if I came away with the idea they were being completely up-front with Ralph and Lois, or what. Only read the story five times. Too, you might consider Flagg at the end of The Stand...bewildered again. As if he doesn't know exactly how and why things happened. Or the hand itself...and there's a word used in that description that echoes the usage of a the same word in a different form earlier when Harold writes in his journal...the idea that when he did not write 'true'...he felt this way, the way the hand moved. I forget the word. Jittering. That's the word. Just went and looked. Whereas when Harold writes he uses...jittery...as I recall.

    Someone else can weigh in on The Dark Tower...but I don't recall those specific terms used. There might be variations on them...or...I guess one could argue that the rails under the mountains are a kind of predestination...they only run in two directions and the handcart needs to follow them. So in that sense of free will...that's at play in The Dark Tower. Too, in It, that idea is at work...the word pawns is used at least once in a conversation.

    I'm sure if I thought about it some more I could find other connections of sorts here and there.
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  8. skimom2
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    skimom2 Just moseyin' through...

    I think he did choose, but my sense was that because he wasn't 'destined' to belong to either side, he could change.

    I truly, truly disliked that character, maybe even more than Flagg.
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  9. Neesy
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    Neesy #1 fan (Annie Wilkes cousin) 1st cousin Mom's side

    Welcome - it has been a while since I read Insomnia. Was Ed Deepneau the one who was beating his wife and then went crazy?

    I hope you enjoy posting here - come back and post some more!

    [​IMG]

    I hope this picture shows up - it is from a site with very strange characters
    I mean they are not Chinese and when I try to copy to translate I am unable to - very weird!
  10. blunthead
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    blunthead Well-Known Member

    Are you thinking of Rose Madder?
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  11. Neesy
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    Neesy #1 fan (Annie Wilkes cousin) 1st cousin Mom's side

    No - in Insomnia there was a rotten guy who drove a pickup truck and I recall it was filled with fertilizer to make a bomb.

    I think he also had a problem with beating up his wife to the point where she is almost killed.

    (I think Mr. King has written about domestic assault in more than one of his stories, actually).

    Now I have to go searching for the reference or it will bug me! :hmm:
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  12. blunthead
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    blunthead Well-Known Member

    Oh ok. I read Insomnia but it was a long time ago.
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  13. Neesy
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    Neesy #1 fan (Annie Wilkes cousin) 1st cousin Mom's side

    Yeah - I had to go check, too! It turns out that Ed Deepneau beats up his wife Helen and then gets arrested.

    (He is the one with a plane full of explosives that he plans to crash into the community centre).

    Wow - so many books - I'd need a photographic memory to recall every one!
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  14. mjs9153
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    mjs9153 Guest

    Ed was a yuppie type and didn't drive a pickup, he got into an accident with the pickup guy and Ralph intervened..how the rules of the Random and the Purpose work seem a little ephemeral to me,and subject to change in different circumstances and different levels of the Tower.. I think the only inviolate rule is that things are subject to change,either with the help of beings like Clotho and Lachesis,Ka,or the mortal's own will..
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  15. katarina
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    katarina New Member

    WOW! Thank you all for the replies! And thank you for the warm welcome! :love_heart::love_heart::love_heart:

    I may have to give the Dark Tower series a try, perhaps that will be my summer read? Thanks to Walter for your thoughts on connections to The Stand, haven't read it in ages, perhaps I need to revisit it. The Green Mile is still on my to-read list, I enjoyed the movie though.

    Thanks again everyone, I'm looking forward to discussing the Great Man's work with you guys! =D
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  16. Moderator
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    Moderator Ms. Mod Administrator

    Welcome to the Board!
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  17. do1you9love?
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    do1you9love? Alive and Kicking!

    Welcome aboard! This is a great place to be!

    Insomina has long been a favorite of mine. Good discussion so far, so I'll just agree that Ed was tainted by Random, but still able to change...

    which he sort of does in the final confrontation with Ralph in the plane, adverting a more devastating event.
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