A Small Good Thing like Food, Can Feed the Heart and Soul Rather Then the Body.

"Food, like a loving touch or a glimpse of divine power, has that ability to comfort".

--Norman Kolpas.

In the story "A Small Good Thing" by Raymond Carver food plays a comfort role to the parents of young Scotty. Just like the story is named it plays a small important role in the story. Throughout the story the reader can't help wonder why is the baker keep being mentioned? And what exactly is his significance in the story? It's obvious the baker has more in common with the parents and the doctor then imagined.

The beginning of the story is odd. However it does well capturing the feeling of isolation felt by the baker and the parents. The baker is a workaholic. The way he presented himself gave off just that. For example, Ms. Weiss herself wonders "if he"d ever done anything else with his life besides be a baker."(pg. 115). His attitude gave off his unhappiness. He paid so much attention to his work and not his personal life he was bitter. This caused the isolation between him and the world out there. Food played comfort to him. Just baking was a comfort to him. That's why when Scotty's parents seem to forget about the cake he took it very personal. His insistence was for a reason. Food is comfort to him. The baker did not see his work as a job. To him it is something more then that. It gave him a feeling of satisfaction because he enjoyed it. However, the consequences were he did not know how to react to the outside world. One thing he has in common with Scotty's parents is they both feel isolated. With Scotty's parent's it's a different type of situation. .

Scotty's Parents isolation brings them more anguish and hopelessness. They feel like the only ones going through this tragic circumstance. It doesn't help that they don't feel comfort and certainty from the doctor. The doctor does a poor job of admitting he's not sure of what exactly is going to happen.