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  • Writer's pictureDenise Tolan

The Daily Dick: Day 76: Musings From a Sixth Reading of the Great Book

CHAPTER 68 The Blanket


“Oh, man! admire and model thyself after the whale! Do thou, too, remain warm among ice. Do thou, too, live in this world without being of it. Be cool at the equator; keep thy blood fluid at the Pole. Like the great dome of St. Peter’s, and like the great whale, retain, O man! in all seasons a temperature of thine own.”




And we are back to philosophizing – sort of. Ishmael talks about the skin of the whale. He uses the skin of the skin of a whale as a bookmark, by the way. He also likens the harpoon marks on the whale’s body to hieroglyphics on pyramids. Okay.


But then we get back to philosophizing. The whale has lots of blubber because he gets into cold areas. They call the blubber the whale’s blanket. We learn about all of that, which I did not find as cool as the cutting of the blubber in the previous chapter, say that what you will about me.


I love the last lines of this chapter though. Ishmael asks us to be like the whale. Stay cool. Live without taking on the trappings of the world. Be ourselves. Keep our wits about us. All sage advice. This book is worth its weight in gold moments like this!

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