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The Five People You Meet in Heaven

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1 The Five People You Meet in Heaven
Vocabulary & Notes

2 Reflection With a partner, discuss the following:
Where do you think authors gain the inspiration for their novels? “It’s a tale of a life on earth. It’s a tale of life beyond it. It’s a fable about love, a warning about war, and a nod of the cap to the real people of this world, the ones who never get their name in lights.” So, what are some of the topics that Mitch Albom might be touching upon in this novel?

3 Author Background: Mitch Albom
Who is Mitch Albom? Best-selling author, journalist, screenwriter, playwright, radio and television broadcaster, and musician In 1985, moved to Detroit and became a famous sports journalist at the Detroit Free Press. Currently hosts a daily talk show on WJR radio. Regularly shows up on the shows: ESPN Sports Reporters and SportsCenter. Founded seven charities in the metropolitan Detroit area. Began his career as an author after reuniting with Morrie. Has three best seller novels that became TV movies: The Five People You Meet in Heaven, Tuesdays with Morrie, and For One More Day

4 Video Introduction life-charity-and-god/ you-meet-heaven

5 Vocabulary (Pages 1-31) Squat (adj.): short and thick or low and wide, especially in a way which is not attractive Retrieve (verb): to find something and bring it back Imminent (adj.): when an event, likely unpleasant, is about to happen soon Solvent (n.):a substance, usually liquid, that dissolves or can dissolve another substance

6 Arthritis (noun): a disease that causes the joints of your body to become swollen and very painful

7 Shingles (noun): a disease caused by an infection of the nerve endings, which produces painful red spots

8 Lanky (adj.):someone who is lanky is tall and thin, and moves awkwardly

9 Halibut (noun): a large flat sea fish used as food
Pier (noun): a structure that is built over and into the water so that boats can stop next to it or people can walk along it Halibut (noun): a large flat sea fish used as food

10 Vocabulary (Pages 1-31) Nimble (adj.): able to move quickly and easily with light neat movements Summon (verb): to order someone to come to a place Agony (noun): very severe pain Cacophony (noun): a loud unpleasant mixture of sounds

11 Taffy (noun): soft, chewy, sweet food
Judy Garland: ( ) a US film actress and singer who first appeared in films as a child. She is most famous for appearing as the character Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz. Taffy (noun): soft, chewy, sweet food

12 Unravel (verb): when threads, string, rope, etc
Unravel (verb): when threads, string, rope, etc., stop being twisted together - Ex: Unraveled cable wire

13 Vocabulary (Pages 1-31) Primitive (adj.): very simple, does not have modern parts to make it better Pristine (adj.): extremely fresh or clean; not damaged in any way Limber (adj.): able to move and bend easily Perversion (noun): the process of changing something that is natural and good into something that is unnatural and wrong, or the result of such a change

14 Kiosk (noun): a small building in the street where newspapers, sweets etc are sold
Promenade (noun): a wide road next to the beach, where people can walk for pleasure

15 Tenement (noun): a large building divided into apartments, especially in the poorer areas of a city

16 Notes (Pages 1-31) Story starts with an ending (Eddie’s death)
Setting- sunny, at amusement park, summer Eddie’s death – accident involving Freddy’s Free Fall Eddie: a workingman (a maintenance man) white-haired old man, army tattoo, left knee wounded in war, job was to “maintain” the rides dies on his 83rd birthday, regular customers knew him, children loved him, teenagers did not love him


18 Notes (Pages 1-31) Foreshadowing: p.2 – After all these years he could hear trouble… Onomatopoeia: p.4 – clack-clack-clack Dominguez: lanky, boney-cheeked, young man, optimistic Eddie planned to leave the pier, but his plans never worked out. He came to the acceptance that this was his life and being a maintenance man was all he would ever be- “got stuck,” “settled” Eddie gives Dominguez money for his vacation We can infer that they are friends, only friend Eddie has

19 Notes (Pages 1-31) Onomatopeoia: p.8 zzzap zzzap
P.8 – teenagers do not respect him Marguerite- what assumption can you make? Theme (p.10) – connectedness (everything in life is connected in some way) Foreshadowing (p.11)- the missing key…how? Key is also demonstrates the theme of connectedness Eddie leads a lonely life Nearly lost everyone he cared about Final words- “Get back”

20 Notes (Pages 1-31) P. 18- example 2 of the theme – the little girl Last thing Eddie felt before his death- two hands in his own Italicized sections represent flashbacks of Eddie’s life. The Journey Eddie’s journey to heaven- feels no emotion, sadness or pain; feels calm like a child Eddie’s Fifth Birthday Mickey Shea- works with his father; alcoholic What can you infer about Eddie’s relationship with his parents?

21 Notes (Pages 1-31) The Arrival:
Woke up in a teacup; at Ruby Pier 75 years ago No pain, doesn’t need a cane, BUT can’t speak (has no voice) Hears a voice coming from the sideshow, also known as the freak house A man with blue skin tells Eddie that he as been waiting for him.

22 Vocabulary (Pages 32-55) Grotesque (adjective): unpleasant, shocking, and offensive; extremely ugly in a strange or unnatural way (Example: The Blue Man) Belittle (verb): to make someone or something seem small or unimportant Silver nitrate (noun): A poisonous colorless crystalline compound, AgNO3, that becomes grayish black when exposed to light in the presence of organic matter and is used in manufacturing photographic film, silvering mirrors, dyeing hair, plating silver, and in medicine as a cautery (burning dead tissue) and antiseptic

23 Silver Nitrate

24 Vocabulary (Pages 32-55) Agitated (adjective): so nervous or upset that you are unable to keep still or think calmly Commodity (noun): a product that is bought or sold; a useful quality or thing Relent (verb): to change your attitude and become less strict or cruel towards someone

25 Notes (Pages 32-55) Eddie had barely known the blue man.
Eddie’s body feels like a child’s because that is when he knew the Blue Man . You start with the same feelings you had. Heaven has steps. The Blue man is in two, Eddie is in one You can not talk so that you can listen Why is Eddie in Heaven: To meet 5 people Each was in his life for a reason… you may not know it at the time, so that is what heaven is for. For understanding your life on earth How does the Blue Man say people think of heaven? - place to have your life explained to you

26 Notes (Pages 32-55) The Blue Man is the first person Eddie meets: he went through five people and waited in heaven for Eddie to tell him his story, which is a part of Eddie’s. Some people he knew, some he didn’t BUT they all changed his life forever. Blue Man tells Eddie that he killed him. Flashback - Eddie’s 7th birthday – Receives a new baseball as his present…ball is overthrown and Eddie and Joe chase after it Theme of connectedness: the baseball he received on his seventh birthday The Blue Man: Immigrant from Poland, had no money growing up, nervous child by nature, father worked in a sweatshop and eventually joined him, wet his pants at his father’s work and father refused to speak to him- he had shamed him… became a nervous young man

27 Notes (Pages 32-55) The Blue Man went to a chemist for medicine for his nerves -> gave him silver nitrate (later considered poison) -> mix with water and take every night It wasn’t working, so he took more than he was supposed to = skin was turning the color of ash and turned from gray to blue- side effect of the poison Got fired -> ran into carnival workers one night and agreed to join their carnival -> then later came to Ruby Pier and that became his home They are at Ruby Pier because that is where heaven is for the Blue Man. This is not Eddie’s heaven

28 Notes (Pages 32-55) Same story- two different angles, two different endings, one happy and one sad Eddie’s side: Playing baseball with his friends -> ball flies over Eddie’s head -> runs into the street chasing after it -> runs in front of a car The car screeches and veers and just misses him. Then, he goes back to his friends as if nothing happened and continues on with his friends

29 Notes (Pages 32-55) Blue Man’s side:
Borrows a car to practice driving, road is wet, and suddenly a baseball and a boy appear in front. Slams on the brakes -> car skids -> man regains control of the car Sees in the rearview mirror the boy has disappeared but the man’s body is still affected from almost hitting the boy. Experiences a jolt of adrenaline -> heart is pumping too fast -> feels dizzy -> drops his head, and almost collides with another car. The man veers -> slams his brakes -> and the car skids until it collides with the back of a parked truck The crash causes the man to smack into the steering wheel, and his head is bleeding -> Gets out -> sees the damage -> collapses -> has a heart attack and dies.

30 Notes (32-55) Flashback: Eddie’s 8th birthday
Eddie is mad that he has to go somewhere on his birthday and doesn’t think it is fair He knows he is supposed to be sad, but instead is mad, and counting down until it is over. Little does he know that he is at the Blue Man’s funeral, the man he unknowingly killed

31 The First Lesson Eddie thinks he is in heaven for justice, to pay for his sin. Blue Man is really there to teach him something. Lesson 1: There are no random acts in life. We are all connected. Fairness is not involved in life and death. Eddie was at his funeral and didn’t even know it. The good from the Blue Man’s death is that Eddie lived.

32 Connecting Art & Literature
Michelangelo’s “The Last Judgment”


34 Connection Explain how artists have been depicting heaven and hell for centuries. How does the media perceive the afterlife? How does Eddie perceives heaven as a place for punishment and the prevalence of this notion in today’s society. Are there other depictions of the afterlife in contrast to paradise vs hell?

35 Author’s View of Heaven
People think of heaven as a paradise garden, a place where they can float on clouds and laze in rivers and mountains. But scenery without solace is meaningless. "This is the greatest gift God can give you: to understand what happened in your life. To have it explained. It is the peace you have been searching for." Eddie coughed, trying to bring up his voice. He was tired of being silent. "I am your first person, Edward. When I died, my life was illuminated by five others, and then I came here to wait for you, to stand in your line, to tell you my story, which becomes part of yours. There will be others for you, too. Some you knew, maybe some you didn't. But they all crossed your path before they died. And they altered it forever."

36 Do-Now Explain how action and consequence are connected.

37 Writing Assignment “There are no random acts. That we are all
connected. That you can no more separate one life from another than you can separate a breeze from the wind.” Explain this quote in your own words. Then, relate this idea to your own life. For example: How different would life be if you didn’t meet your: best friend, your sibling, or a certain role-model?

38 Vocabulary Bandolier (noun): a belt that goes over someone's shoulder and is used to carry bullets Oblige (verb): when someone does something because they have to and it is necessary Bayonet (noun): a long knife that is fixed to the end of a rifle Burlap (noun): a type of thick rough cloth Barracks (noun): a building or group of buildings in which soldiers live Diversion (noun): something that stops you from paying attention to what you are doing or what is happening

39 Bandolier Bayonet

40 Burlap Barracks 

41 Notes (P. 56-97) Eddie’s body is now changing Acting like a soldier
No longer limber- muscles are tight Acting like a soldier “Fear had found him, even in heaven.” Mother’s reaction to war vs. father’s reaction to war Mother cares, father is distant Had a goal before the war- to study engineering Eddie thought war would make him a man. Mickey Shea’s advice: thinking gets you killed

42 Notes (P ) Second Person: Eddie’s Captain from the war (his commanding officer) Was not expecting him Captain’s promise- “leave no one behind” Eddie tells the Captain that he still does not understand why he is in heaven. Eddie did not keep in touch with the men in his unit. Hurt too much

43 Notes (P. 56-97) Eddie and his unit were captured:
Kept in a coal mine All had different reactions to being captured 4 months in- Rabozzo gets really sick Shot by captors Rabozzo’s death really affects Eddie Stops praying and counting the days Thought they were going to die there. Eddie gets himself and the unit free by creating a diversion. Pretends to sing a melody- really telling his men to be ready to attack Grabbed a rock -> threw it at Crazy Two -> killed all of the Crazies Revenge

44 Notes (P ) Eddie and his men burned down the huts, mines, and surrounding areas Eddie goes into a burning barn Thinks he sees a small child; convinced he sees someone Hallucinating Lost his mind at this point; reached his breaking point Burning in the barn-> gets shot in the knee and dragged out of the burning barn

45 Notes (P. 56-97) Eddie feels a rush of pain and anger; scars return
Eddie tackles the Captain, and they wrestle through the vines Why? Eddie would have died Wasn’t his time Only had a minute to get out Captain took his leg to save his life (Sacrifice) Got into the transport vehicle -> reached a gate Captain got out to check the path Signaled the men to move forward- path was clear Captain stepped on a land mine and blew to pieces

46 Notes (P. 56-97) THE SECOND LESSON:
Captain has been waiting at his burial ground Dying is not the end; Earth is only the beginning Heaven is to make sense of your yesterdays Sacrifice- Eddie made one, Captain made BUT Eddie was angry and kept thinking of his losses “Sacrifice is a part of life. It’s supposed to be. It’s not something to regret. It’s something you aspire to. Little sacrifices. Big sacrifices.”

47 Notes (P. 56-97) THE SECOND LESSON:
Rabozzo- sacrificed his life BUT his brother became a great solider and a great man- inspired Captain did not die for nothing- they all would’ve died Captain was waiting for Eddie’s forgiveness Captain’s heaven: Wanted to see a world without war War zone came to life- green grass, blue sky The captain sees where he dies differently than Eddie

48 Vocabulary (Pages 98-119) Firmament (noun): the sky or heaven
Succulent (adj): juicy and good to eat Gurney (noun): a long narrow table with wheels used for moving sick people in a hospital Solitude (noun): when you are alone, especially when this is what you enjoy Entrust (verb): to make someone responsible for doing something important, or for taking care of someone Meager (adj): when the amount of something is too small and is much less than you need

49 Vocabulary (Pages ) Callous (adj): not caring that other people are suffering Mimic (verb): to copy the way someone speaks or behaves, especially in order to make people laugh Unbeknownst (adverb): without that person knowing about it Inexplicable (adj): too unusual or strange to be explained or understood Covet (verb): to have a very strong desire to have something that someone else has

50 Vocabulary (Pages ) Bodice (noun): the part of a woman's dress above her waist Parasol (noun): a type of umbrella used to provide shade from the sun Agitation(noun): when you are so anxious, nervous, or upset that you cannot think calmly:

51 Notes (Pages 98-119) Eddie is now in the mountains with snow
Physical changes: older; body is flabbier, looser Becoming the man he was on Earth Knee pain is still there Stumbles upon a diner People in there are from different decades and everyone has been wounded Looks over and sees his dad Significance in the way his dad is sitting: Ignoring him even in heaven

52 Notes (Pages 98-119) Eddie’s 24th birthday:
Only his mother is singing His father doesn’t move to sit- just stands and stares out the window Continues to stare at his leg- disappointed in him Why does Eddie want to cry? Damage done by Eddie’s father: Neglect as an infant (wouldn’t hold him) Grabbed him by the arm as a child Left for someone to watch at the pier Father = discipline Eddie wanted his father’s attention

53 Notes (Pages 98-119) His father played cards 4 nights a week
Involved drinking Would smack Eddie across the face When his father drank, he physically and verbally abused Eddie and Joe: Yelled, whipped with a belt, throw them against the wall, throw their toys around the room Damage #2: Violence Privately adored his father = how you learn devotion Told Eddie he had to protect his brother; be his “keeper”

54 Notes (Pages ) Eddie started following his father’s footsteps in junior high Ran the rides Began to fix things Envied his brother for not having to do dirty work Eddie’s father thought Joe was not strong enough for his line of work. Damage #3: Denial of affection The night Eddie and his father stopped speaking: “Get a job” FIRST time Eddie defends himself – grabs his father’s arm Damage #4: Silence

55 Notes (Pages ) Eddie meets an old woman who tells him that his father can’t hear him. His soul is safe..part of the woman’s eternity Eddie still does not understand why he is heaven Asks the woman if he can go back to his last day “This place” makes no sense to him. Does not feel like an angel You have peace when you make it with yourself Eddie does not know this woman, but she knows him

56 Notes (Pages 98-119) Old woman: Eddie’s third person = Ruby
Worked at Seahorse Grille Eddie used to eat breakfast there. Met Emile- earned his wealth, swore to build a resort park just for her to capture the moment of his proposal and to stay forever young Kept his promise and built a lavish amusement for her and name it “Ruby Pier.” Eddie’s third person = Ruby

57 Vocabulary (Pages ) Roustabouts (noun): a man who does work for which he needs to be strong but not skilled, especially in a port, an oilfield, or a circus Fruitless (adj): failing to achieve what was wanted, especially after a lot of effort Recede (verb): when something gets further and further away until it disappears Falter (verb): to become weaker and unable to continue in an effective way Coarse (adj): having a rough surface that feels slightly hard Subsequent (adj): happening or coming after something else Haltingly (adverb): if your speech or movements are halting, you stop for a moment between words or movements, especially because you are not confident

58 Notes ( ) A big July 4th fire destroyed the original Ruby Pier entrance, and Ruby Pier was in flames. A column collapsed onto Emile when he insisted on going to the fire and throwing water on the entrance because it was Ruby. Lives changed in one night Minimal insurance- lost his fortune and the pier Park was reopened but wasn’t theirs anymore Took Emile 3 years to walk on his own They moved away, lived modestly, Ruby tended to Emile Ruby’s wish: That Emile had never built the pier

59 Notes (120-145) Emile was sickly…Ruby widowed at 50
Never wanted to see Ruby Pier again Ruby’s idea of heaven (p.123): far away from the ocean and back in that diner when days were simple We go through places that would not be if not for those that came before us: No Emile, then no husband. If no marriage, no pier. If no pier, Eddie would not have worked there. Ruby is here to tell Eddie why his father died. Phone call from Eddie’s mother Father collapsed, raging fever A few days earlier- his father came home soaking wet, developed a bad cough that got much worse (pneumonia)

60 Notes ( ) Eddie was mad that his mother was blaming herself…his father’s drunken fault His condition worsened from fair to serious. Eddie helped out at the pier to protect his father’s job. Wanted to avoid the pier his whole life Ends up doing his father’s work Eddie just holds up his grease-stained fingertips when he visits his father at the hospital. Why? Make him proud- that is what he wanted for Eddie

61 Notes (120-145) Eddie felt empty anger when he father died.
Nothing heroic about his death Eddie’s mother was in a daze Cooked for two Talked to him like he was still there Yelled for him to turn down the radio Fluffed pillows on both sides of the bed Caused Eddie to quit driving a cab Moved into the building he grew up in Accepted a job as a maintenance man at Ruby Pier to keep an eye on his mother Cursed his father for trapping him in this life and dying

62 Notes (120-145) Why is Eddie dark on his birthdays? Foreshadowing:
“Eddie thinks about Marguerite. He always thinks about Marguerite when Noel mentions the race track” (p.131). Eddie got stuck Got used to his work at the pier- just never left Ruby knows something Eddie does not.

63 Notes ( ) Mickey, in a drunken state, began to take sexual advantage over Eddie’s mother Grabbing her, touching her, pushing her against the wall Eddie’s father comes home, sees this, and chases after Mickey out of the apartment and into the rain. Mickey jumps into the ocean and Eddie’s father jumps in after him Fighting in the ocean Ends up saving Mickey from drowning Goes into the ocean to fight Mickey, possibly kill BUT in the end he couldn’t… he knew who Mickey was Mickey got his father a job, lent money when Eddie was born= took old friendships seriously

64 Notes (120-145) “Things are not always what they seem.”
Mickey got fired that day. He got really drunk… came looking for help Not an evil person- acted out of loneliness and desperation Eddie’s father acted on impulse – first to kill, then to save This is how Eddie’s father got sick… laying on the beach for hours, too weak to move Died because of loyalty

65 Notes (120-145) Eddie’s father never spoke of that night again.
He was ashamed. Stopped speaking entirely in the hospital Silence was his escape BUT thoughts still haunted him In the hospital Fell into a coma One night, nurses found him hanging half way out of the window calling for his family

66 Vocabulary (p. 147-end) Deformed: something that is deformed has the wrong shape, especially because it has grown or developed wrongly Ambushed: a sudden attack on someone by people who have been hiding and waiting for them, or the place where this happens Relentless: strict, cruel, or determined, without ever stopping Embankment: a wide wall of earth or stones built to stop water from flooding an area, or to support a road or railway Embroidered: to decorate cloth by sewing a pattern, picture, or words on it with colored threads Charred: something that is burned until black Engulf: to completely surround or cover something; feel something completely

67 Notes (p.147-end) Eddie has aged by the fourth person
Coming close to the end of his five people Approaches all different wedding receptions with different culture Celebrating love in various ways Eddie hates weddings Embarrassed Can’t do anything at them Would avoid them

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