English II Revision – A Treasure Trove of Short Stories
Read the extracts below and answer the questions that follow:
Half the enchantment of the place was due to the fact that it did not have the benefit of municipal lighting. The place was lit up by shop lights. One or two had hissing gaslights, some had naked flares stuck on poles, some were lit up by old cycle lamps and one or two like the astrologer’s, managed without lights of their own.
i. Which place is described here? How could the lack of municipal lights be an advantage? 
ii. Explain how the setting helped in attracting customers to the astrologer. 
iii. How did the astrologer manage without having a light of his own? 
iv. Who were the other traders and vendors who did their business around him? 
My mother’s chin was up and she was staring down at him along the full length of her nose. It was a fearsome thing, this frosty-nosed stare of my mother’s. Most people go to pieces completely when she gives it to them.
i. Who was the mother staring down at?
ii. Why did the mother give him the cold stare?
iii. What does the child remember about the effect of cold stare on her headmistress?
iv. What effect did the mother’s cold stare have on the old man?
v. Did the old man succeed in convincing the mother and getting what he wanted?
If u tried going near her during the day, someone or the other would say, “Let the poor thing have some rest at least while she is here.” Ma too would put on a pathetic act as if we always harassed her at home.
i. Where was Ma? Why were the children not allowed to go near Ma? [1+2=3]
ii. Who is referred to as the “poor thing”? Why? 
iii. Why does the “poor thing” need rest? 
iv. Why did the narrator feel disgusted? What did she do? 
v. How did the Naani treat the mongrel dog? 
“I don’t worry”, he said, “but I can’t keep from thinking.”
“Don’t think,” I said. “Just take it easy.”
“I am taking it easy,” he said, and looked straight ahead. He was evidently holding tight onto himself about something.
i. Who is “he” and “I” referred to in the extract?
ii. Why does he say that he doesn’t worry?
iii. What was “his” anxiety about?
iv. What does “I” tell him to remove “his” anxiety and fear?