Cherry Valance

The Outsiders

All About Cherry

Cherry Valance was just your average Soc, she had money and what seems like the perfect life from the outside. One day Cherry and her friend Marica, were at the movies. Dally spots them, and think that they are good looking so he goes up and talks to them. He says some not very nice things, but Cherry says, “I wouldn’t drink it if I was starving in the desert. Get lost, hood.” (22). This shows that Cherry has self respect and can stand up for herself. No one ever talks to Dally like that, but Cherry wasn’t scared too. Then Johnny tells his story about getting beat up by Bob. Then Cherry tells Ponyboy, “All Socs aren’t like that,” she said. “You have to believe me, Ponyboy. Not all of us are like that... That’s like saying all you Greasers are like Dallas Winston. I’ll bet he’s jumped a few people” (34) This shows that Cherry knows that your group doesn’t define who you are, and she sees that Ponyboy isn’t like every other Greaser.

Then she explains in more detail what she means by that, “I’ll bet you think the Socs have it made. The rich kids, the West-side Socs. I’ll tell you something, Ponyboy, and it may come as a surprise. We have troubles you’ve never even heard of. You want to know something?” She looked me straight in the eye. “Things are rough all over.” (34) This shows that even though Ponyboy thinks that her life is perfect, and completely made it isn’t. Then she explains more of the Socs problems to Ponyboy:

“No, it’s not just money. Part of it is, but no all of it. You greasers have a different set of values. You’re more emotional. We’re sophisticated--- cool to the point of not feeling anything. Nothing is real with us. You know, sometimes I’ll catch myself talking to a girl-friend, and realize I don’t mean half of what I am saying. I don’t really think a beer blast on the river bottom is super-cool, but I’ll rave about one to a girl-friend just to be saying something. I never told anyone that. I think you are the first person I’ve ever really gotten through to... We’re always going and going and going, and never asking where. Did you ever hear of having more than you wanted? So that you couldn’t want anything else and then you start looking for something else to want? It seems like we’re always searching for something to satisfy us, and never finding it. Maybe if we could lose our cool we could” (38).

This shows her understanding of life, she gets that she has a place in life and she knows what she is supposed to do even if she doesn't like it. Even though she is only 16 she is very wise and she understands about life, she can connect her life with Ponyboy’s even though they are from two opposite worlds. She can see some of the stuff that Bob does that is bad, but she doesn’t say anything to him, “It’s not my idea of a good time to sit in a drive-in and watch people get drunk” (27). This shows Cherry is mature for her age, while most people her age their idea of a good time is the complete opposite of hers. “Ponyboy... I mean... if I see you in the hall at school or some place and don’t say hi, well, it’s not personal or anything, but... We couldn’t let our parents see us with you. You’re a nice boy and everything...” (45-46). This show even though Cherry understands the way society works, and wished it was different she still won’t test out the way it works. She knows that people would judge her, if she was talking to a Greaser. She understands that’s just the way the world works.

Cherry and I's Similarities

Cherry and I are similar because we can both see the way society works, and even though we don’t necessarily agree with it there isn’t much we can do to fix it. I can compare the Socs and the Greasers even to our school, yes Van Meter has cliques. They aren’t as violent or extreme, but there is certain people that hang out with certain people, and everyone knows their place. I definitely think that if I was in the book I would be a Soc. I come from a good family like Cherry. We’ve never had any money problems that I know of, I usually get what I want, I can have Miss Me jeans and things that some people can’t. I’m not as rich as Cherry, but I definitely haven't had a hard childhood by any means.

Cherry can hang out with more than just people in her clique, and I feel like I can too. Cherry also has a way of being able to kind of read people, and I can too. If I see someone, it's easy for me to tell if they are in a bad or good mood.

Cherry doesn’t take much crap from anyone, and neither do I. When Dally was talking to her she responded in a direct way, to defend herself, and I would do the same thing. This shows that Cherry has a lot of self respect for herself. She doesn’t let people walk all over her because she is a girl, she has a strong will and is willing to stand up for herself.

Cherry and I both know that we have it good, and people in other places or even right near us have it a lot rougher. She realizes she has it good, and she knows she sometimes takes advantage of stuff, but she is also thankful because she sees how good she actually has it when she meets the Greasers.

Cherry and I both play it a little on the safe side, while we have our moments of fun we like to play the situations out in our heads and think of the consequences. When she talks about how she won't say hi to Ponyboy in the hallway because of what people might think of her. She also talks about how her parents would hate to see her around a Greaser, and I am the same way I never want to disappoint my parents. She and I have a reputation to hold, and we both plan on doing it and never disappointing anyone.

If Cherry and I were friends we would be in the same clique, in fact I think that we would be best friends probably. We think the same way, about how to stand up for ourselves, how the world works, and other little things. Best friends don’t have to agree on every little thing but we would definitely understand each other.

Cherry and I's Differences

Cherry and I are different because Cherry is more wise, and she knows about the world. She knows how to handle situations. She has been alive longer than me which gives her more experience and knowledge. Like when Johnny killed Bob, she understood that Bob had it coming, and she was one of the few people to see his nice side. I would be upset and might not ever talk to any Greaser ever again, but she ends up helping them. That shows a lot of maturity.

She also has the right things to say all time. When she talks about how things are rough all over she says it so perfect right there on the spot. When I think of something good to say it usually happens after the conversation is already over. She knows the exact words to say about Bob dying too, I just don't get it I would be in tears and saying who knows what. I would also probably be made and Ponyboy and the rest of the Greasers because of what Johnny did.

Cherry is stronger than I am, because when Bob dies she understands why he had to go, she even talks about him testing his boundaries just to try and get his parents to say no. She said that he has it coming to him, but know one has really ever seen his sweet side. If my boyfriend died, and I knew who the killer was I would probably break down. Cherry even shows up for the trial, which would be extremely hard. Cherry is a strong girl who handles things well.

Cherry and I's main difference is maturity, she knows all the right things to say and do. Where as I have to think about it for a while, she is a smart girl who can think on the go, where I over think every situation. She knows a lot more about the world then the average rich sixteen year old. She is extremely mature for her age, and she even matures throughout the book, at the beginning she doesn't like Greasers because they are poor and from the wrong part of town. Then at the end she realizes there isn't really that much of a difference between them, which is a concept most people don't ever understand in their life.