"What have you got that a man could drink with just a minimum risk of blindness and death." This line really caught my attention. I'm pretty sure it's just for the sake of humor and might have been a common saying back in history times. Unfortunately, Mexican barman can't understand so the joke is a total bomb. I think we've all had this experience: Yeah man, this joke is great. I'm gonna nail 'em this time aaaannd they don't understand. Oh well. That's probably not relevant, but I thought it really brought the characters to life. Made them real.
The card game. Monte. Three Card Monte is the full name and it's not so much a game as it is just a con. It sounds like a bunch of gambling that I don't understand and apparently gullible people are cheated out of money (that's a new one). http://www.pagat.com/misc/monte.html
I guess it's no surprise some fellow was stabbed during the game.
Mexican guy. He's talking to the fellas and I didn't really catch the end where apparently his son was stabbed, but he says "The blood of a thousand Christs." He's talking about how much death there is in Mexico. I don't understand why it's the blood of Christs though. Isn't there only one Christ, or is Christs just short for Christians? And then after that line, the Mexican says "nothing." I don't get it.
Part two of the chapter. The first line. He introduces it so well, in a way I've never seen before (and the first paragraph is in present tense for some reason.) "In the predawn dark the sounds about describe the scene to come." There's something about that line. It's so elusive and works perfectly.
And finally the Jacksons have had enough. I thought Whitey would've just shot him without thinking twice. Did he not even think Blackie could just as easily kill him? He was drunk, yes. Then the "two thick ropes of dark blood," spew like some geyser and whatnot. It's great that the cigarette stays in his fingers. And the other guys don't care, they leave him there. I guess they knew it was bound to happen soon enough. Guys are dropping like flies out there anyway. Death is just an everyday thing out there. It's still hard for me to grasp. It makes me think, would the kid even care if Toadvine were to die? Maybe we'll find out. I guess the best thing to do out there is be selfish, that way nothing bothers you.
And the last line is what keeps the book going. "They had not gone forth one hour upon that plain before they were ridden upon by the Apaches." Everybody wants to turn the page. We're ready for more genitals and viscera! It's lines placed like that which let authors get away with uneventful chapters.