What are some quotes and/or language features that help relate to an important choice made by a character in The Outsiders?

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bullgatortail eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Randy Adderson is the Soc who meets with Ponyboy outside the Tasty Freeze and later visits him at the Curtis house. The best friend of the dead Soc, Bob Sheldon, Randy is confused about the events since Bob's death, especially the heroics performed by Pony, Johnny and Dally in saving the children from the church fire. Randy can't believe a greaser would perform such an act, telling Pony that

"I wouldn't have. I would have let those kids burn to death."

Author S. E. Hinton creates an emotional scene that serves as a lesson for both Randy and Pony, and it is the only time in the story when a Soc and greaser befriend each other. Randy has decided not to take part in the rumble. "Close to tears," he tells Pony how Bob's parents never told him "no," and how the rumble won't decide anything.

"Greasers will still be greasers, and Socs will still be Socs..."

Randy reveals an emotional side to Pony that he could never show to his Soc pals. Half-sobbing, he asks Pony for advice.

"What can I do? I'm marked a chicken if I punk out at the rumble, and I'd hate myself if I didn't. I don't know what to do."

The two depart on friendly terms, and Pony recognizes that Randy is not just a Soc--

     "... he's just a guy."
     ... I felt better. Socs were just guys after all.