Study Guide

Tortilla Flat Chapter 14: Of the good life at Danny's House, of a gift pig, of the pain of Tall Bob, and of the thwarted love of the Viejo Ravanno.

By John Steinbeck

Chapter 14: Of the good life at Danny's House, of a gift pig, of the pain of Tall Bob, and of the thwarted love of the Viejo Ravanno.

  • Danny's friends spend their days sitting in the sun on the porch and sleeping well at night. They tell stories about their fellow citizens of Tortilla Flat.
  • For example, the friends gossip about Cornelia Ruiz, who goes through "husbands" quickly, usually chasing them out violently when she's done with them. One guy brought her a little piglet as a present, but she left the door open, and the mama pig came and wrecked her house, taking the little pig with her.
  • The friends then tell about Bob Smoke, a man who really wants to be admired but always ends up getting laughed at. Apparently, Bob Smoke once thought it would be a great idea to try to kill himself in public—you know, just so someone would stop him. The trouble is that when someone did come, he tried to grab the gun, which went off, taking the end of Bob's nose with it.
  • The friends also tell about Old Pete Ravanno and his son, Petey, both of whom fell in love with a couple of sisters, Gracie and 'Tonia Montez. Petey got Gracie to marry him and quit running around with other guys by trying to hang himself. Old Pete Ravanno thought that was a pretty good idea, but when he tried to hang himself, the door blew shut, so no one found him. He ended up dead instead of married to 'Tonia.
  • After telling all these strange stories, the gang decides to go make the fishermen mad, hoping they'll throw mackerel at them in revenge, therefore providing them with dinner.