Why was Theo in the hospital in "The Westing Game"?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

Theo is in the hospital because he blew up the high school chemistry lab when he miscalculated during an experiment.

The accident Theo causes is a very serious one. A bomb squad detective shows up at the hospital to ask him questions while the doctor is treating him. He explains...

Unlock
This Answer Now

Start your 48-hour free trial to unlock this answer and thousands more. Enjoy eNotes ad-free and cancel anytime.

Start your 48-Hour Free Trial

Theo is in the hospital because he blew up the high school chemistry lab when he miscalculated during an experiment.

The accident Theo causes is a very serious one. A bomb squad detective shows up at the hospital to ask him questions while the doctor is treating him. He explains that he was doing an experiment with chemical fertilizers and that he miscalculated. The detective seems suspicious at first, but Theo has an alibi for the earlier events.

One of the ways Theo approaches the Westing Game is to look at it from the perspective of a chemist. He looks at a chapter on chemical solutions and also thinks that he'll find the solution to the will. Of course, that doesn't help and he ultimately creates something that lands him in the hospital and blows up the lab.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team
An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

Theo is in the hospital because of an accident he caused at his high school chemistry lab (Chapter 20).

In trying to decipher the clues he has been given in the Westing Game, Theo discovers that if he arranges the words in a certain way, the clues present a formula for an explosive (Chapter 17).  He experiments with the formula using chemical fertilizers, but makes "a slight miscalculation", causing the lab to blow up.  Fortunately, no one else is around at the time; Theo himself is injured and ends up in the hospital emergency room.  Theo's injuries are minor, and after removing glass shards from his shoulder and patching him up, the doctor releases him with "a warning about careless chemistry" (Chapter 20).

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team