Friendship in Tortilla Flat


Friendship is an essential connection between two or more parties which enable them to have a back to turn to at times of sorrows, joys or in any other situation in life that may encounter. Apart from the family members, everybody needs a friend they can trust with information, secrets and also their properties. Friends not only serve as trustees to their counterparts but are also required to offer advice, motivation and courage to each other, in situations about the support required. However, there have been incidences of people misusing the name and the complete meaning of friendship in various ways by doing and portraying the exact opposite of the phrase. However, some friends tend not to be so much relied on and often such people need to be avoided. Additionally, others take advantage of the situation one is in and instead of helping they run away and leave one desperately need of the help. This has been experienced by almost everybody in the world, every once in a while a fact that has resulted in the lack of complete original trust possessed by friends. Although friends trust each other, there are limits sets to when it comes to certain things in life making it hard for people to be open and all rounded with specifics about this stuff. This essay intends to explore the book Tortilla Flat by Joe Stanford with Danny as the major character. More so, the paper aims to explore the friendship status of the characters and provide an argument on the same issue based on the real life situations.

The book portrays Danny as a regular man who used to work in the army and has just arrived home from the fights. His long operations in the military had prevented him from coming back for a long period. On his arrival, he finds out that his grandfather who was long dead had left a property for him to help him get back on his feet. This comes as a surprise to Danny as he describes with a heavy drinking behavior and can hardly take care of himself let alone the property (Joe). His friend Pilon however, helps him face the property and with time the two visit the property and together they move in despite the mess in which the property is at. As friends and now housemates, they help each other in cleaning the place and making the necessary changes. Friendship between these two characters is portrayed through the connection of the property that Danny inherited from his grandfather. The two also have a drinking habit, a fact that makes them close and together most of the time.


Danny was easy in making friends as he had a lot of them back at home. This is shown in the text by the fact that he managed to make a friend in prison to the extent that they even planned of sneaking out of jail to look for a drink. They both got so drunk that Tito his friend went back in the jail to report himself while Danny made his escape and prevented a pursuit the following day by staying off the main streets. He later meets with one among his old friends, Pilon whom they share thoughts of Danny’s old friends that had swept by the war. Though he was drunk, Danny was able to recall all of his friends that they shared the past together and expressed deep sorrow for them. He is then consoled by Pilon that his friends died while fighting for their country and therefore there is a reason to celebrate rather than mourning. This demonstrates the true purpose of friends in people’s lives, in order to provide console and comfort in times of sorrows and distress.

True friendship and commitment among parties involve the ability to treasure moments even if one of them happens to die. People ought to keep their memory and all the good things related to them which brought them together. This is shown through the conversation Danny and Pilon had while they were drunk. Danny gets upset when his friend mentions that the memories of those dead are long gone and that there is no need to mourn them for long. In response, Danny assures to Pilon that in case anything ever happens to Pilon, he will never forget him as long as he will be living because he loved him and a true friendship relation with him. Their conversation continues for a while, as Danny explains to his friend how much he would support him if he ever acquired a lot of money at his disposal. The fact that Danny thinks about his friend in case he ever becomes wealthy and rich, indicates how friends are supposed to care for each other through providence and kindness.

The book portrays strong friendship relationships among the characters involved, as we are shown how Danny and Pilon still maintain their relationship even after the fight they had. The two picked a fight that lasted for long due to the divided thoughts of the girls and the bottles of wine bought by Pilon. Friends will always argue and end up in fights since they care about the best for each other. In this case the two friends had divided thoughts about the whine an incident that resulted into a big fight but managed to forgive each other at the end of it all. This indicates how alive their friendship status is due to the arguments for the best. The book describes the fight as too fine that Danny lost a tooth while despite all of this; the duo made peace with each other and made the fan out of it all.

Later in the book, Pilon makes an additional friendship with another party, Pablo and the two connect well to the extent of sharing a house to share the rent at the end of the month. The two bring out various qualities about friendship through their actions and the lifestyle they live together. The book affirms that the two had a strong bond which allowed them to share most of the moments together like watching the sun on the front porch while at the same time listening to the street horns. The two are brought out as peaceful, making wishes that they both figured themselves in the same. Pilon and Pablo have thoughts about their third friend Danny, and at some point, they even discuss on talking to Danny about a girl he could marry. This is an indication of the kind of love that the three friends have towards each other, through the thoughts they had for their fellow friend who was currently not married.

The text clearly expresses the need of friendship in every individual’s lives, as it enables the establishment of companies eliminating loneliness and sadness in their life. The characters in the book portrayed as friends support the idea of a group of friends, as each of them would be highly lonely if each of the friends were not available. We are told that Pilon and his friend Pablo were dependent on each other in various aspects. It is evident how the two would be troubled if they were not friends. Even after sorrows and deaths in people’s lives, they are supposed to rise from the grief and make new friends to fare on well with their lives. This is well shown by the actions of the friends in this book since most of their old friends had been killed in the wars while in the army, they accepted the past and made new friends while treasuring the moments with their old friends in their minds.


Friendship is a key to survival among human beings and should, therefore, be treasured. It is always wise to choose the best partner who can help you grow positively and always correct you whenever one is wrong rather than a friend who often leads you to the wrong direction hence many times finding yourself in trouble. The benefits and advantages involved in having friends are countless as portrayed in the book through Danny and his Friends. Despite the challenges involved in the friendship relationships, the book brings out the need to maintain and hold on to friendships to benefit at the end. With the help of the book, the paper has described different traits of true friendship. The paper also shows the arguments and fights involved in friendship for the good of the relationship as it keeps it alive.

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