What does Lyman, the narrator, mean when he says, "I was different that way" in "The Red Convertible"?

When Lyman, the narrator, says in "The Red Convertible" that he "was different that way," he is referring to his good fortune in having the ability to make money easily. He claims that this is not something that comes easily to others in his community, and so his luck differentiates him from everyone else.

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Lyman, the narrator of this story, describes what he calls his "one talent": that he could always make money, and that he actually has "a touch" for making money (which is, he says, unusual for a Chippewa). In other words, making money is something he is good at, and it distinguishes him from most other people in his community—this is the "way" in which he is "different" from them.

Everyone could see his talent, as the more money he made, the more money seemed to come easily to him, from shining shoes at the American Legion, to selling bouquets for the nuns, to working his way up the ladder to ownership of the Joliet Cafe by the time he was just sixteen. People even encouraged him, perhaps heartened by the boy's luck and good fortune when everyone else in the community seemed to lack both.

This is how he ended up with enough money to buy the red Oldsmobile convertible with his brother, Henry Junior. Lyman's money was all in cash, a "big bankroll" from the insurance payout he got after the Joliet was "smashed to bits" by a tornado. His brother's money, on the other hand, was in the form of checks, one of which was his regular check for his job and the other was a week's severance pay for having been laid off from that job.

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