Study Guide

Big Sur Chapter 15

By Jack Kerouac

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Chapter 15

  • "It was like my first frightened realization of what to be Japanese really meant," writes Jack. When they ask George if he's going to be all right, he responds that he doesn't know. George seems nervous that the other sin the hospital will see that he's being visited by "a bunch of ragged beatniks."
  • George, who is only thirty, sits and talks like an old man. They try to cheer him up with "Hey, remember the timeā€¦?" stories, but George doesn't respond well.
  • When they all head out to leave, Jack keeps stopping and darting around to wave back at George, who similarly hides and pops out to wave in return. "Suddenly," writes Jack, "we're two hopeless sages goofing on a lawn." He promises himself that someday he'll go to Japan with George.
  • Before Jack gets into the Jeep, he sees George dump a glass of water out of his window, and wonders what his friend meant by such a gesture.

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