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Battlefield Etiquette

Keith D. Brooks

Assignment #

Order Custom Essay on Picnic On the Battlefield

C. C. Tiffany

Rochester College

Battlefield Etiquette

This play “Picnic on the Battlefield” had a strange war feel, yet still gave the reader the sense of a family that stayed very close to one another. Fernado Arrabel did a fine job linking the two together. At the very beginning of the play, you get the cognizance that Zapo does not belong fighting in a war. Imagine a solder asking “And what am I suppose to do with the had grenades? Do I chuck them in front of me or behind me?” This poor innocent lad does not belong fighting; he needs to be at home with his mother.

While at his position, his parents are able to come up behind him. Had they been the enemy, he would have been killed then. Instead, he is kissed by his parents and lectured on war by his mother. Madame Tepan states, “All this is just a game to me.” Showing that all the mass destruction and killing made no impact upon her, she lived in her own fantasy world. And no one was going to change that.

Upon capturing Zepo, Zapo is told by his father to tie the prisoner up. In all his innocence, Zapo did not know how to restrain Zepo. As he was being tied up, Zepo screams out, “Don’t hurt me so much. Ow! You’re hurting me.” For afflicting pain upon the prisoner, Zapos’ parents reprimand him. Imagine fighting in a war, and being told by your parents how to treat your prisoners.

At one point Zapo wants his picture taking with his foot resting on Zepo. He went from a na├»ve young man, to one with cruel intentions. To make his prisoner suffer more humiliation just so he could have a photograph of the experience was unjust. As they were finishing with the photographs, Monsieur Tepan states after Zepo complains again, “Don’t press the point, prisoners are always very sensitive. If we go on he’ll get cross and spoil our fun.” As if this part of the conflict was for his amusement.

When the stretcher-bearers approach the group in search of the wounded, they are disheartened not to find one solder killed or injured. Instead of being elated with joy on the matter, they are more concerned with their Captain being upset with them for coming back without a corpse. Upon their preparing to exit, one of the stretcher-bearers remarks, “We must just hope we’ll have more luck in another trench and that all the lot’ll be dead.” What a horrible statement to make. If this remark had been made with the United States current situation in Iraq, just think of the consequences that would be inflicted upon him.

Zapo and Zepos’ lives were very similar. Both were living at home with their parents, and both had women waiting for them to come back from the war. Each had been told stories by their leaders that if captured, stones would be put in their shoes so it would hurt when they walk. Zapo and Zepo fighting against each other, with no clue as to the reason why. Just that they had been ordered to do so.

At the end, it is a fitting conclusion for them to be killed. They carry on, oblivious to the bombs and gunfire around them. As if the only thing that mattered in the world was what they were doing. Instead, they should have been mindful of their surroundings. That war is real, and the consequences are long lasting. Time waits for no man, so keep your eyes open to what goes on around you.

This can be reflected upon this writers’ past high school experience. While in high school, classes’ attendance was disregarded. Time that should have been spent in class was instead used for socializing. An important lesson was learned from this. Do the work now, or do it later when your class has graduated. The high school years had to be extended for this writer to complete the required credits for graduation. Teasing became the norm by those who decided to poke fun of the extra year that had to be endured. A hard lesson to learn, but much was taken from it. Knowledge to do the work when it is suppose to be done.

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