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Gain Analysis

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Essay title: Gain Analysis

One of the stories going on in the book is the history of Clare Soap and Chemical. This company started back when the United States was not yet a country. A man named Jephthah Clare migrated to the New World. The company started off very small and grew to the international size. There were three brothers that really started the business. This story was solely historical, which made it less interesting. I found myself drifting off during these sections of the book. One part that really caught my attention was when Clare was trying to bring up the sales of one of their bar soaps and so they started a contest. They advertised that the winning bars of soap would have a gold coin in them. This really boosted sales. It reminded me of Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. In that movie, everyone went crazy to find the golden tickets. Even if people didn’t like the chocolate bars, they bought them just for the chance to win. Another part of this story that stood out to me was when Julia, the wife of an important Clare executive, took over and kept the company in line after her father died. It kind of goes along with our “Year of the Woman” discussion. Clare went through so many ups and downs, and this book really showed that. At one part of the book, the company had so much money; they didn’t know what to do with it. They paid people more money and found other funds in which to invest. Other parts in the history of Clare soap the company was in a real rut. One time, during the Vietnam War (I think), a lot of students boycotted all Clare products. At the end of the book, they are being presented with many lawsuits because their plant was putting out harmful materials and causing cancer.

The story of Laura Bodey intrigued me much more than the other half of the book. This is because it was more personal. It was more than just facts. Laura Bodey is a mother of two, a divorced wife, and “in” a relationship with a married man. She has been diagnosed with ovarian cancer. She starts going on chemotherapy. Her body is becoming more and more weak. She has to go through several treatments. When she is almost through with her set of treatments, the doctors find that the chemo isn’t working. The cancer has spread to other parts of her body. They want to start over with another treatment. Laura cannot go through it again. Her daughter, Ellen, is the older of the two. She is pretty self-absorbed. She seems like a girl really consumed with her image and really concerned with being popular. Her son, Tim, I think is afraid of the reality of the cancer. He seems like he is avoiding the idea that his mother is dying. He seems to preoccupy himself, in front of the computer

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