But What About Jason
The Argonauts, a book by a collection of college aged students from 1940, or at least the first few chapters anyways, should be examples of what not to do to experience real life. We follow Lillian Ross, George Whitman, Joe Wershba, Helen Ross, and Mel Fiske on their journey out of their cautious academic lives in New York City, into the rest of America. It gives way to much detail about how they saved money by working hard and scamming family members, and getting grants, and scamming friends and so on. Then once they finally make it onto the road, though before the even go through the Holland tunnel, they bore the reader with information about how they paid the toll to cross. Maybe a statistician would be interested in all of their daily and weekly budget plans, but I for one am not. Then the men drive and deal with money, while the women serve as secretaries/ and cooks even though she can’t cook. It is strange that they don’t compile a list of possible people to meet up with until after starting the journey. In fact it seems like a major oversight on their part, which, due to luck, doesn’t blow up in their face immediately. I think in today’s world fewer people create contact sheets of people they could stay with throughout the country, and they definitely don’t do it by memory. It is also strange that she just writes the name, city, and what they would be good for, as if they could walk into Cincinnati and ask the first person the see about where the contact lives. Also in the first few chapters, they travelers find them selves involved in a strike, and heroically go out to join the picket line. This does seem like something many people would do, but it is just written in a way that focuses solely on them and a select few people. The text would have been more engaging if they had talked much less about themselves, much more about the people they met, and had any discussion of their surroundings. At least in the first part of their trip, these students were more like slightly academically dedicated spring breakers than the Argonauts of lore.