The rocks in this picture symbolizes the lottery. Most people who win the lottery buy themselves luxury items. However in this scenario the lottery winner is awarded with rocks. Rocks are the complete opposite of what a happy lottery winner would usually receive.
In the book it says "he was a round faced, jovial man." I find it very weird how someone can be so happy during a time like this. I can imagine how scared people would be, but he seems very happy and excited.
CAUTION! LIFE IS SHORT, LIVE LIFE TO THE FULLEST!
The phrase "time goes fast" is ironic because time can't go fast. Time for the characters in the story isn't going by fast, they just continue to live their lives as if nothing happened. Yet they almost seem surprised when the "lottery" comes around again, as it does routinely.
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In my personal opinion i feel as if the story has a very gruesome and sad tone. In the beginning of the story there isn't an understanding of what the lottery exactly is.However, throughout the story you begin to understand how in this story the lottery isn't celebrated by the "winners." The lottery is a very gruesome way to control population.
The theme of the story is that life is short and that you should live it to the fullest. The lottery is unpredictable and therefore, you never know who will "win." The characters in the story have to live every day to the fullest because they could be the next lottery "winner."