Wallstreet Panic Snopes

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Wallstreet Panic Snopes
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Snopes, Wallstreet Panic
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Wallstreet Panic Snopes - given his absurd name absurdly, in the hopes that it might mean he'll get rich, but more often called "Wall" in the fictions - is a very young "little periwinkle-eyed boy" when he first appears in The Hamlet (304). He appears in all three volumes of the Snopes trilogy, and his eyes are still "an incredible tender youthful periwinkle blue" at the end of The Mansion (461). By then he is rich, the very successful owner of a chain of "wholesale grocery establishments blanketing half of Mississippi and Tennessee and Arkansas" (461) living in Memphis. His story provides a counterpoint to the rise of Flem from sharecropper's cabin to that mansion. The son of Eck Snopes, Wall began in a cabin too, but while Flem gets rich by ruthlessly exploiting other people, Wall succeeds, as a narrator in The Mansion puts it, "by the outrageous unSnopesish method of jest selling ever body exactly what they thought they was buying, for exactly what they thought they was going to pay for it" (170). He is helped by his wife, who detests Flem and makes sure her husband never takes any help from him. Instead, Wall believes in education, works hard, is willing to innovate, and builds his business slowly but steadily. Throughout his rise, various narrators keep saying in one way or another Wall "was never a Snopes, never in this world a Snopes," as one of them puts it in The Town (152). But perhaps the better way to read him is as a reminder that judging people by extraneous criteria like their name, even if its Snopes, is wrong.