Summary- Entry No.9 Page 376 – Page 423- Ahab doesn’t trust the peg leg he has, so he begs the carpenter for another one. Ishmael believes that the whale population decreased because they no longer travel in groups.
It is as if they hid away from everything for their own safety. The carpenter agrees to make a new leg for Ahab, but he also pays for it because Ahab drives him crazy. Ahab yells at him because in order to make a new leg for someone, you need time and in his mind there is no time. The carpenter mocks Ahab behind his back. Meanwhile, the oil casks begin leaking, Ahab insists that they don’t fix them.
This angers Starbuck to the point where Ahab sympathetically requests to repair the casks. Unfortunately, Queequeg becomes fatally sick and he thinks that the illness will result in his death. He orders the man to build him a coffin featuring his important possessions. He lays in the coffin while Pip dances around it and after a while the coffin restores him back to full health. Queequeg jokes about it and uses his coffin for storage purposes. The reader meets the blacksmith and Ishmael requests that the blacksmith should make him a special harpoon to kill Moby Dick. Ishmael supplies him with the nails of horseshoes and tough steel to construct the harpoon. Ahab gives the blacksmith more problems than directions so for a last resort Ahab constructs the harpoon himself.
The making process of the harpoon involved more blood of the men than anything else. Ahab declines a gam with another ship called the Bachelor when their captain tells him that he has stories about Moby Dick and Ahab believes that it is a lie. The crew of the Pequod goes on to kill multiple whales. Ahab takes the time to bond with one of the dying whales making the crew and the readers see the mental captains softer side. The sweetness of the moment halts once Fedallah brings up a prophecy about his death and how after he dies, Ahab will follow after.
However, Ahab doesn’t believe him because he doesn’t plan on dying at sea. Afterward, Captain Ahab discusses matters of latitude with Starbuck and Stubb which results in him changing the ships direction. However, his decision affected the Pequod because it ran into a typhoon that destroyed one of his harpoon boats. Ahab doesn’t install lightning rods on the ships masts and due to his incompetence parts of his ship and his harpoon go up in white flames.
The frightened crew tries to take care of it but Ahab blows out the flame believing that it will blow away fear. Ahab’s behavior makes the man controversial because his crew gossips about him the next day. Stubb and Flask feel like Ahab puts them in danger and that he is more dangerous than the typhoon.
During the aftermath of the storm, Starbucks debates whether or not he should kill Ahab. He agrees with himself over and over and comes to the conclusion where he decides to not kill the captain. Response- Entry No.
9 Page 376 – Page 423 – When Ahab bonded with the whale it shocked me. I am used to reading terrible descriptions on the man and his opinion on whales. When he talks to it, the situation made me connect with him even more because it made me realize that Ahab isn’t all bad. According The John Hopkins University Press, “Ahab is conscious of being in the same mortal plight that Ishmael recognizes above, for, as he says, “I’m all aleak myself. Aye! leaks in leaks! not only full of leaky casks, but those leaky casks are in a leaky ship. .
. . Yet I don’t stop to plug my leak; for who can find it in the deep-loaded hull; or how hope to plug it, even if found, in this life’s howling gale?” Although he experiences this general mortal plight, Ahab, at first glance, can be distinguished from other men, for his already burdened body has received an additional handicap, the loss of his leg as a result of his first encounter with Moby Dick.
” In other words saying Ishmael and I were too quick to judge Ahab. Despite the fact that he wants revenge on the whale and annoys his crew, Ahab also manages to have a softer side. Another shocking moment that I encountered in the story was the case of Queequeg. In my opinion, Queequeg is one of those “healthy as a horse” characters and if anything I expected Ishmael to fall sick during this trip because he is weaker. Ishmael clearly proved me wrong because the crew needs him for his knowledge on whales. Ahab’s behavior continues to leave mixed impressions on the men and myself.
Parts of his ship and his harpoon were on fire and he didn’t do anything about it. He blew his harpoon’s fire out because he didn’t install any lightning rods which made the ship prone to a fire. When Starbuck debated as to whether or not he should kill Ahab I had to read it over because I couldn’t believe it. I couldn’t imagine him even thinking that far but then again he has more common sense than most of the men there. Stubb and Flask thought that the man proposed danger with his plans and Starbuck thought the same way in the moment. However after he thought it through I am glad that he didn’t kill the man.