After encountering unusual but understanding moments with Ponyboy, Cherry was faced with a revealing experience where she was pressured to decide between staying with the Greasers or joining her impatient Socs friends. Pressed by her friends, Cherry quickly determines to follow the rest of her group, all while attempting to maintain her connection with Ponyboy unknown by her surroundings. In order to manage her clean reputation, she distances herself from the Greasers and warns them about encountering her once again.
Cherry notes, “‘We couldn’t let our parents see us with you all. You’re a nice boy and everything…'” (Hinton 45) In this quote, readers can notice a change in Cherry’s tone as she immediately transitions from being understanding and accepting to becoming notably uncomfortable and pressured. Additionally, Cherry’s harsh and immediate reaction towards Ponyboy’s presence around her group represented and revealed her concern about standing out. As a result, readers were able to observe the great influence Cherry’s group had on her actions and opinions, therefore explaining her sudden restricted and forced personality. All in all, Cherry’s response to the unexpected presence of her Socs friends demonstrated the effect and influence groups have on people’s personalities and actions. During his unpredictable escape, Ponyboy expressed his desire to travel to the tranquil countryside, demonstrating an indirect passion for liberty and independence. For Ponyboy, a travel to the countryside would enable him to pursue his hidden interests and provide life-changing possibilities for all his group members.
The author writes, “…not worry about being jumped or carrying a blade or ending up married to some scatterbrained broad with no sense” (Hinton 48). In this quote, the readers can observe that the country-side represents an outlet from various obstacles and Ponyboy’s approach to removing his challenges as a Greaser.
Finally, the countryside’s “fresh beginning” and lack of separation appeals to Ponyboy greatly, as he would not be forced to act like a Greaser and finally live normally. The Greaser’s families are not having positive impacts on their children as they are rarely present and involved with their children’s necessities. Greaser families are usually restricted by unfortunate circumstances, resulting in no assistance and responsibility from many Greaser parents. As a result, many Greaser parents are not able to present their children with the appropriate tools, such as a secure environment and a pleasant household. The author notes, “Johnny’s father being a drunk and his mother a selfish slob, and Two-Bit’s mother being a barmaid to support him.
..” (Hinton 43). In this quote, readers can observe that Ponyboy is furious about the unfavorable situations of his members, as most Greasers are forced to live in unstable settings due to their parent’s irresponsibility. Consequently, without any supplies and support, Greasers are pressured with multiple obligations as they are expected to mature and care for themselves. Likewise, mistakes and misbehavior for Greasers have greater effects, as they have a higher chance of losing everything and lacking essential requirements. Thus, Greasers experience various challenges and must work greatly to gain the necessities their families do not present.
Previously, Ponyboy concluded that the significant unbalance that disconnected the Greasers and Socs was purely money. He believed that if this major element was even, there would be no disconnection and continuous disagreement with the two groups. Nonetheless, after receiving Cherry’s opinion about the separation, Ponyboy’s view quickly modifies as he begins to understand that money isn’t the single factor that disconnected the two groups. Thanks to their conversation, readers were able to observe that the two groups portrayed their feelings in different ways, as Greasers had a strong emphasis on emotions while Socs were distant and unemotional. Ponyboy has closely observed the ways his friends confront the multiple challenges and restrictions they encounter as Greasers. Not only do Greasers have to face the constant criticism from other people, but they are forever labeled negatively by their surroundings. In this quote, readers can observe the various ways Greasers handle the pressure given by their environment and their responses to their labels.
While some have decided to treat the standard as a joke, other Greasers have taken their labels extremely seriously. Nonetheless, readers are able to notice the significant and indirect impact the Greaser’s negative labels are having on their actions and personalities, as all Greasers remain pressured to follow their surrounding’s opinions. As a result, Greaser’s are always expected to act violently and can never truly present their opinions and personalities without having to follow their limitations as Greasers. All in all, all Greasers had multiple methods to confront the challenges caused by their surroundings, which relates back to the influences groups have.