This Boys Life; Memoir or False Personification

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This Boy’s Life; Memoir or False Personification Some people grow up creating so many untrue ideas of who they really are that somewhere in between convincing themselves and other people, they begin to believe their own false conceptions. In the Memoir, “This Boy’s Life,” a young Toby Wolff begins his story. He runs head first into the book with what seems like whole-truths, but he soon starts to fabricate his tales. Deeper into the text, he openly admits his obscene falsehoods, leading the reader to question his integrity and his ability to tell an absolute truth. However, Tobias Wolff may just be the most truthful liar ever to write. When a person lacks a complete idea of himself, he tries to fill in the blanks. Giving off statements that he somehow hopes to complete the question of his personality, whether it is true or not, he states it as fact. In one instance, Toby is given a Winchester .22 rifle by his mother’s ex boyfriend, Roy. He is instantly fascinated by not only the rifle itself, but the power it portrays. For a while after, Toby entertains the idea of pulling the gun out into an empty apartment, breaking it down, cleaning it, “and nothing more,” he states. Soon this ritual is not enough, and becomes a game of dress up. Old uniforms of Roy’s hang loosely off of his body as he marches around with it, and even strikes brave poses in front of the mirror with the rifle pressed against chest. As if he was cradling a small child. Soon again, he becomes restless, and takes it to another level when he actually fires at a squirrel, killing it. Though he avoided the apartment after this, he tells readers, “I could not shake the idea that sooner or later I would get the rifle out again. All the Images of myself as I wished to be were images of myself armed”(27). He confesses. “Because I did not know who I was, any image of myself, no matter how

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