At the beginning of part 2, Montag is disenchanted with his mundane life as a fireman and turns toward literature for answers. After attempting to read several books, Montag decides to take the subway to visit Professor Faber in hopes of learning how to comprehend the information he has been reading. While Montag is on the train, he attempts to read a passage from the Bible but is continually interrupted by an annoying Denham's Dentifrice advertisement blaring through the speakers. The faster Montag tries to read, the more he struggles to comprehend the information and cannot remain focused with the loud advertisement in the background.
Montag's futile attempts to understand the information he is reading reminds him of his childhood experience at the beach. When Montag was a child, his cruel cousin bet him a dime that he could not fill a sieve with sand. The faster Montag poured the hot sand into the sieve, the faster the sand sifted through the bottom until the sieve was empty again. The sieve and the sand incident is an accurate metaphor for Montag's hopeless attempt to comprehend the passage from the Bible while riding the train. Fortunately, Montag arrives at Faber's home, where he discovers the importance of literature and embarks on a new journey to pursue knowledge.