The Outsiders Questions and Answers
by S. E. Hinton

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When does Ponyboy say that Johnny is having the time of his life in The Outsiders?

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To be completely correct, Ponyboy does not say that Johnny was having the time of his life. Ponyboy tells readers in chapter 6 that it looked like Johnny was having the time of his life.

This is the chapter that has Ponyboy and Johnny leaving the abandoned church only to run right back into it after realizing that the building is burning down and that there are some kids trapped inside the building. Johnny and Ponyboy both run headlong into the building with little to no thought about their own personal safety.

Ponyboy gives readers a wonderful paragraph about Johnny's heroic actions. He runs into the room with children and confidently begins barking orders at the kids. The nearest escape is cut off, so Johnny opens a window and begins throwing kids out of the window. Ponyboy is amazed at Johnny. He is simply not acting like the scared little puppy kid that Ponyboy first described him as to readers. Johnny is in a situation that should be completely terrifying, and Johnny is not showing one bit of fear.

In fact, Ponyboy gets a good look at Johnny and sees that he is smiling. This is when Ponyboy tells us that Johnny looked like he was having the time of his life in this very dangerous situation. Johnny is in control and has no worries about rival gang members or abusive parents in this situation—so for Johnny, it probably is the best moment of his life.

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