When sammy is able to see the girls he sizes them up

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slowly, on these long white prima dona legs” (Updike 18). When Sammy is able to see the girls he sizes them up and focuses on their descriptions. Sammy’s comments about the girls reinforce the idea of his immaturity. His constant comments about their physical features are simply young male thoughts and Sammy is nineteen years old. He says that her "clean bare plane of the top of her chest down from the
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Green 2 shoulder bones like a dented sheet of metal tilted in the light." Sammy is obviously very distracted and is staring at the girls, instead of doing his job (Updike 18). Queenie made a large impact on Sammy’s decisions, therefore, his desire to be different than the other A & P workers pushes him to quit. After the change in Sammy he thought of Stokesie as someone he did not want to turn out to be. After Sammy’s change he saw Stokesie as a young, boring, married man stuck at A&P just like Lengel. In reality Sammy is no better at the beginning of the story because he is dismissive and immature with his comments about customers being “sheep’s” and the girls being nothing but eye candy to him (Updike 21). When Sammy and Stokesie are watching the girls walk around the store Stokesie says jokingly "I fill so faint." Sammy said "Darling, hold on to me tight" this is an example of the immaturity both characters share at the beginning of the story. They act as if they have never seen pretty girls before. In a matter of a day, Sammy goes from an immature boy with unrealistic ideas and fantasies, to a man who is about to realize how life altering the choices he makes can be.
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  • Spring '14
  • AlexisD.Alexander
  • English, Conflict, A&P, Short story, Physical attractiveness, John Updike, John Cheever

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