Get some more ice, Myrtle, before everyone goes to sleep


Senior Member
'I like your dress,' said Mrs McKee.
'This old dress? I've had it for years,' Myrtle laughed.
'Have something to drink,' Tom said to the McKees. ' Get some more ice, Myrtle, before everyone goes to sleep.'
'I told the boy about the ice,' Myrtle said angrily. 'These people! You have to tell them all the time.'
[Excerpt from The Great Gatsby. DonnyB - moderator].

Well, There's nothing to try hard and understand about grammar and vocabulary. But, I'm not sure about the meaning.
Let me tell you my understand about this.

Get some more ice Myrtle so that you can be awake. If you were awake , Nobody couldn't go to sleep.
'I already asked my servant for the ice,' Myrtle said angrily. You have to tell these people about eating some ice , not me.

I will look forward to hearing from all of you.
Last edited by a moderator:
  • coiffe

    Senior Member
    American English
    The passage in green is not properly explained with the passage in red.

    I'm pretty sure that the ice referred to is ice for their drinks. Tom is recommending they have more to drink in order to stay awake (or not fall asleep), and Myrtle said she already asked for more ice. They're waiting for the ice so that they can mix more drinks.

    That's how it reads to me, anyway -- out of context.

    suzi br

    Senior Member
    English / England
    I’m not sure why he says “before everyone goes to sleep” I suppose it’s a way of say “quickly”. Implying if they have to wait much longer they will fall asleep instead of drinking cocktails.
    Myrtle’s comment is about how slow or inattentive the servant is. It’s nothing to do with anyone eating the ice.

    Hermione Golightly

    Senior Member
    British English
    If you could tell us where exactly in the book this happens we can read around the quote. That would be an adequate source. I'm sure there's an on-line version.


    Senior Member
    Thank you all. I agreed to suzi. I don't know Why he says "before everyone goes to sleep ". If he want to say this, I think It is correct to write "Get some more ice , All ( not only Myrtle ).


    Senior Member
    Here's the online version.
    When we are able to read around the quote and when you give us the correct information about who is who and what they are doing, then we will do our best to help you.
    I know exactly what's going on because I read the book in great detail not long ago, but you need to post correctly
    Oh. OK I got it. Next time I post a thread , I will post it as detailed as possible. But the book I'm reading is graded readers for leaners not the original text.

    Hermione Golightly

    Senior Member
    British English
    That will be very helpful. What is the series and publisher of the abbreviated one you are reading?
    Now, to get back to the OP.
    First, here is context: The narrator, Nick, has been persuaded by Tom, the husband of his cousin, to go to NYC with him. On the way, they pick up Tom's mistress, Myrtle Wilson, the wife of the local garage owner.
    The three of them go to Tom's city apartment and Myrtle invites anothe couple and her sister.
    They all drink heavily all afternoon
    (despite 'prohibition', an era when the open sale of alcohol/liqueur was forbidden), and it was a warm day. People get sleepy on warm days after lunch and something to drink, and they get even more sleepy when they drink alcohol and haven't had lunch, in a small, stuffy, crowded apartment.
    If the drinks are warmer than they should be, the drinkers are even more likely to go to sleep ( I suppose). It's ironic that Tom says this, because it's clear that he and Myrtle had had sex before the others arrived, so the insinuation is that he himself was sleepy.
    There are no servants. Myrtle is acting as if there were, as if she was the wife of this very wealthy man, Tom.
    < Previous | Next >