Why does Ponyboy act the way he does?50 words

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bullgatortail eNotes educator| Certified Educator

    Ponyboy is different from all the other greasers in the Susan E. Hinton teen novel, The Outsiders. He likes school--he even skipped a grade and was promoted to high school at a young age. He is an avid reader and shows talent as a writer. He loves watching movies and often goes alone since his other friends don't enjoy them much. Unlike the other greasers, he is quiet and sensitive; he rarely reveals his inner thoughts--except to Cherry Valance.

    I have quite a rep for being quiet, almost as quiet as Johnny... Nobody but Soda could get me talking. Till I met Cherry Valance.
    I don't know why I could talk to her; maybe for the same reason she could talk to me.

This connection with Cherry shows another different side to Ponyboy: He finds that at least one Soc, Randy Adderson, is not so different.

    "He ain't a Soc," I said. "He's just a guy. He just wanted to talk."
    ... Socs were just guys after all.

Much of Pony's introspective nature comes from the recent death of his parents in a car accident, and he still misses them. Ponyboy is "tuff," but he isn't as tough as the rest of his gang, and they want him to stay that way. Pony's friends and brothers all realize he is different--he is the one who has a chance to become something besides a life-long hood or greaser. According to Darry,

"...with your brains and grades, you could get a scholarship, and we could put you through college."