Why does Cherry Valance interest Ponyboy in The Outsiders?

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Cherry Valance is the epitome of which all teens--greasers and Socs alike--dream. She is rich, beautiful, red-headed, a cheerleader, and she drives a Corvette Stingray! For Ponyboy, she is an unattainable dream. Although she bonds with Pony and genuinely likes him--and finds him attractive--she tells him that she cannot talk to him at school. As for bringing him home to meet the parents,

"We couldn't let our parents see us with you all. You're a nice boy and everything..."

She is the girlfriend of Randy Adderson, who is later killed by Johnny, further creating the impossibilty of them actually becoming close friends. But she is sensitive, intelligent and likes sunsets--all attributes that are attractive to Pony. When she decides to act as the greasers' spy, it impresses him even more. Cherry is Pony's one connection (aside from Bob Sheldon) to the upper-class world that he would love to enter--if only as an outsider looking in.

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