Study Guide

Trashman in The Ear, the Eye, the Arm

By Nancy Farmer

Trashman

We're not sure if Trashman is really an adult. He talks like a four-year-old and can't remember anything for more than a couple minutes. Plus, he has trouble taking anything seriously and staying on task. Tendai gets annoyed at the guy sometimes because he can't rely on him to get help. Instead Trashman roams around stealing food and mumbling words.

Still, we're told "it was impossible to dislike Trashman. He accepted affection as easily as a kitten accepts its mother's licks—and forgot it as quickly" (10.39). We know the guy means well, and in a book riddled with baddies, in the end, that's all that matters. He might not be the brightest bulb in the box, but at least he tries.

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