What quotes describe Ponyboy's traits in The Outsiders?

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Ponyboy, the protagonist of The Outsiders, is depicted through various traits such as insightful, imaginative, and empathetic. He exhibits insight as he analyzes the superficial nature of the Socs, imagination through his daydreams of a peaceful life away from his current environment, and empathy by risking his life to save children and using his experiences to help others through his writing. These quotes and actions throughout the novel illustrate his complex character and growth.

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Ponyboy is an insightful individual. While he is having a conversation with Cherry, he begins to analyze how the Socs act and behave. He realizes that the Socs are insincere and superficial. Ponyboy understands that there is much more that separates them than pecuniary differences. After Cherry explains to him the issues with her social group, Pony says,

"That was the truth. Socs were always behind a wall of aloofness, careful not to let their real selves show through. I had seen a social-club rumble once. The Socs even fought coldly and practically and impersonally" (Hinton 34).

Ponyboy is also imaginative and is continually daydreaming. Pony wishes to escape his current environment and often thinks of peaceful places he would rather be. While he is lying on his back next to Johnny looking at stars, Pony says,

"I wanted to be out of towns and away from excitement. I only wanted to lie on my back under a tree and read a book or draw a picture, and not worry about being jumped or carrying a blade or ending up married to some scatterbrained broad with no sense. The country would be like that, I thought dreamily" (Hinton 42).

Ponyboy is an empathetic individual who is concerned about the well-being of others. He not only risks his life to save the children in the burning building but decides to write The Outsiders as a way to help other troubled youths in similar situations. At the end of the novel, Ponyboy decides to begin writing the story and says,

"It was too vast a problem to be just a personal thing. There should be some help, someone should tell them before it was too late. Someone should tell their side of the story, and maybe people would understand then and wouldn't be so quick to judge a boy by the amount of hair oil he wore. It was important to me. I picked up the phone book and called my English teacher" (Hinton 152).

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The narrator of The Outsiders, Ponyboy Curtis is an introspective teenager, still dealing with the death of his parents in a car crash. The most intelligent boy among his gang of greasers, Pony excels at school, where he is also a member of the track team. A sensitive boy who enjoys being alone when he can, Ponyboy loves to read and he has a talent for writing; he also "digs" sunsets and watching Paul Newman movies. He smokes too many cigarettes, according to older brother Darry, and he often makes decisions that show a lack of common sense. His brothers and greaser friends alike see a bright future for Ponyboy, and there is hope that he will be able to attend college after high school. But they also worry that Ponyboy will eventually grow "tough" on the streets as many of the other greasers--particularly Dallas Winston--have. As Two-Bit Mathews tells him,

"... don't get tough, Ponyboy. You're not like the rest of us and don't try to be..."

When Pony and Johnny come to the rescue of the children in the burning church, they are acclaimed as heroes. But Pony doesn't think so. When Jerry, who was supervising the picnic at the church, asks if

"... you were sent from heaven. Or are you just professional heroes or something?"

Pony simply responds that "we're greasers."

Johnny's dying words to Pony are "stay gold," referring to the Robert Frost poem which the two boys had discussed. Pony's life seems to be crumbling after the deaths of Johnny and Dallas, but when his teacher gives him a second chance to complete his English essay, Pony decides to tell his side of the story--which becomes the basis for The Outsiders.

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“…sometime I just don’t use my head. It drives my brother Darry nuts when I do stuff like that, ‘cause I’m supposed to be smart; I make good grades and have a high IQ and everything, but I don’t use my head.”

This shows Ponyboy is book smart, but he lacks the common sense to survive on the mean streets.  This shortage of street smarts and awareness of his environment gets him in a lot of trouble.

“I kept saving my money for a year, thinking that someday I could buy Mickey Mouse back for Soda.  You’re not so smart at ten.”

Though naïve, Ponyboy is a caring and generous teenager.  There is nobody in the world he loves more than his brother Soda.

“Why do I fight?  I thought, and couldn’t think of any real good reason.  There isn’t any real good reason for fighting except self-defense.”

Ponyboy is different than the rest of his gang.  He is a non violent kid who would prefer to stay away from fighting, while the rest thrive off the adrenaline they get from fighting or need it to let their anger out.

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Oh I MUST add a very important quote by both Ponyboy and Robert Frost here!  In my opinion, Ponyboy reciting "Nothing Gold Can Stay" to Johnny and, of course, discussing the poem with Cherry Valence, shows Ponyboy to also be a sensitive, thoughtful, intelligent, and introspective young man.

Let's look at the poem Ponyboy recites and how it shows the above qualities:

Nature's first green is gold
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf's a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.

Probably one of Robert Frost's most famous (and most memorized poems), Ponyboy recites this to Johnny as they share their thoughts while running from the law.  Sunset and sunrise are such brief times of day.  Brief, but beautiful.  Ponyboy proves himself THOUGHTFUL as he reflects on this brief beauty in nature.  The fact that this exact beauty and thought remain with him for a lifetime (and that he would share them with a special girl) prove him SENSITIVE.  The fact that Ponyboy can simply memorize this poem and recite it again and again, with emphasis (and analysis!), proves him INTELLIGENT.  And, finally, the fact that he can compare the gold of a sunrise or sunset to his own life, and even the lives of his buddies such as Johnny and Dally, prove him to be INTROSPECTIVE. 

As Johnny is dying, these are the reasons why he tells Ponyboy to "stay gold."  It is a beautiful sentiment from one friend to another unifying them in character, especially in regards to the traits mentioned above.

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One trait of Ponyboy Curtis in "The Outsiders" is that he is humble, courageous, and strong. He does not regress or lower himself in order to be popular or successful. He is himself, and this allows him to be special. In one instance, Ponyboy causes some Socs to retreat by brandishing a broken piece of glass at them. While some might see this as an extraordinary act of bravery, especially considering Ponyboy's injuries, he is humble about the act. He says impressively that, "anyone else could have done the same thing." This is one example of why Ponyboy Curtis is an admirable character in the novel.

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What are some quotes that describe Darry's traits from The Outsiders?

Darry is the hard-working oldest brother of the Curtis family, forced to accept the responsibility as head of the household after his parents are killed in an automobile accident. Darry is forced to put aside his dreams of playing college football to take care of Soda and Pony, and he works two jobs in order to support them. He is particularly hard on Pony, since he sees a bit of himself in his younger brother. He knows that Pony has a chance to succeed in school, go to college, and get out of the dead-end world of the greasers. Darry acts out of love, although Pony rarely understands this. Darry treats Soda differently, partly because he is older, but also because he realizes the happy-go-lucky Soda will not be able to succeed in the way Pony may.

According to Pony, Darry's "hard and firm and rarely grins at all... (he's) grown up too fast." He "works too long and hard to be interested in a story or drawing a picture." When Pony doesn't "use my head... It drives my brother Darry nuts." But there is no doubt that Darry loves and cares about Ponyboy. When Darry and Soda come to the hospital following the fire at the church, Pony saw the

     ... tall, broad-shouldered Darry... his eyes were pleading... Suddenly, I realized that Darry was crying. He didn't make a sound, but tears were running down his cheeks. I hadn't seen him cry in years, not even when Mom and Dad had been killed...
     That was his silent fear then--of losing another person he loved... and I wondered how I could have ever thought him hard and unfeeling. 

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Describe four character traits of Darry using details from the The Outsiders

The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton is a story with many unforgettable characters. The story is about two rival gangs called the Greasers and the Socs. The Outsiders is told from the point of view of Ponyboy Curtis, a member of the Greasers.

Ponyboy Curtis has two brothers who are also members of the Greasers, Sodapop "Soda" Curtis and Darryl "Darry" Curtis. Ponyboy is the youngest of the Curtis brothers at 14 years old and also gets good grades and is athletic. Soda is unlike his younger brother in that he is a high school dropout who works at a gas station. He is 16 years old. Darry Curtis is the oldest of the Curtis brothers at 20. Darry is considered the "leader" of the Greasers and has been taking care of his brothers since their parents died in a car accident.

Darry has many character traits. He is masculine, hard-working, caring, and angry.

Throughout the novel, Ponyboy talks about Darry's masculinity. He calls him "movie-star gorgeous" and comments on his muscles frequently. His nickname is also "Superman" which signals how impressed the other members of the gang are by him. In high school, Darry was very popular and athletic, something that Ponyboy admires. Darry's masculinity is defined by Ponyboy's thoughts and comments and are mostly about his looks and his strength.

Darry is also hard-working. He is considered the parent of his younger brothers and other members of the gang. Rather than going to college, Darry stays at home so that he can care for his siblings. He works two jobs and sacrifices frequently so that his brothers can have the life he had to give up.

Although at times, Ponyboy disagrees, Darry is also very caring and considerate. When Ponyboy considers dropping out of school, Darry tells him that this is unacceptable. He tells Ponyboy that going to college is his only way out of their town and to find other opportunities. Darry must care for his brothers as well as other members of the Greasers while maintaining his two jobs and many other responsibilities that come along with running a household.

Because of all of these responsibilities, Darry is sometimes angry. He feels pressure all around him and is really just a kid himself. At only 20, he is in charge of two teen boys, has two jobs, and must manage everything that parents normally manage. Darry is a stressed out time bomb waiting to explode. His anger is expressed when he yells at Ponyboy, slaps him, and knocks him into a wall. Darry feels very guilty about this incident because he does love his brother and is simply frustrated and weighed down with the stress of adulthood.

Darry is only one of the interesting and complex characters in The Outsiders.

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Describe four character traits of Darry using details from the The Outsiders

Hard-working: Darry was forced to make several significant sacrifices in order to keep his family together after the death of his parents. Darry did not accept an athletic scholarship to go to college, and instead decided to work two jobs to pay the bills. In Chapter 3, Ponyboys says,

"Sodapop... a dropout so he could get a job and keep me in school, and Darry, getting old before his time trying to run a family and hold on to two jobs and never having any fun---" (Hinton 38).

Serious: Darry is a rather serious individual who doesn't joke around much. Ponyboy initially views his older brother with contempt whenever he compares Darry to his happy-go-lucky brother, Sodapop. Darry has experienced several tragic events throughout his life and has a lot of responsibility. In Chapter 1, Ponyboy talks about his brothers, and says,

"Like he's never hollering at me all the time the way Darry is, or treating me as if I was six instead of fourteen. I love Soda more than I've ever loved anyone, even Mom and Dad. He's always happy-go-lucky and grinning, while Darry's hard and firm and rarely grins at all" (Hinton 3).

Masculine: Darry is the biggest and strongest member of the Greasers. There are several scenes in which Ponyboy comments on Darry's huge muscles and physique. In Chapter 7, Ponyboy says,

"We all call Darry "Superman" or "Muscles" at one time or another; but one time Steve made the mistake of referring to him as "all brawn and no brain," and Darry almost shattered Steve's jaw. Steve didn't call him that again, but Darry never forgave him" (Hinton 92).

Concerned: Darry is a concerned brother who is always looking out for Ponyboy. Sometimes, Darry can come off as overbearing, but he is always pushing Ponyboy to excel at school. In Chapter 12, Darry tells Ponyboy,

"You're not going to drop out. Listen, with your brains and grades you could get a scholarship, and we could put you through college. But schoolwork's not the point. You're living in a vacuum, Pony, and you're going to have to cut it out" (Hinton 148).

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In the Outsiders by S.E. Hinton, what were some quotes said by Darry that revealed what he was like?

Darry acts like a father to his two younger brothers, because their parents have died. He's a bit rough with them, saying things like, "You're both nuts," because he's still young himself, only 20 years old, but he uses parenting language when necessary: "Yeah, since it ain't a school night" (pg 13) is almost like something a parent would say, except that Darry uses slang, "ain't" instead of "isn't," showing that he's actually a young guy trying to be parental.

On page 44, Darry shows again that he really cares about his brothers:

I reckon it never occurred to you that your brothers might be worrying their heads off and afraid to call the police because something like that could get you two thrown in a boys' home so quick it'd make your head spin. And you were asleep in the lot? Ponyboy, what on earth is the matter with you? Can't you use your head? You haven't even got a coat on.

Although Darry's angry and shouting at Ponyboy, it's obvious that he cares deeply about his brother and feels responsible for him, by phrases like, "brothers...worrying their heads off," and "You haven’t even got a coat on." He cares enough about Ponyboy to notice things like whether he's dressed properly.

Darry works hard to look after his brothers, but he doesn't resent it and woudln't want them to be removed from his care ("thrown in a boys' home"). Ponyboy realizes this on page 84, when Darry says to him, "Oh, Pony, I thought we'd lost you... like we did Mom and Dad..." This was the first time Ponyboy saw Darry cry. He hadn't even cried at their parents' funeral. For the first half of the novel, Ponyboy is scared of Darry and thinks Darry hates him, but he discovers Darry really does care about him at this moment.

The course of events in the novel cause Ponyboy and Darry to become closer and closer. On page 142, Darry says, "Maybe you can be a little neater, huh, little buddy?" He has always called Sodapop 'little buddy,' but this is the first time he calls Ponyboy 'little buddy.' It shows that Darry feels closer to his youngest brother, Ponyboy, as they have a few close calls through the events of the novel.

Darry keeps his feelings for Ponyboy hidden most of the time, but near the end of the novel, Darry shows that he respects Ponyboy. He tells Ponyboy to stay in school because he is intelligent: "You're not going to drop out. Listen, with your brains and grades you could get a scholarship, and we could put you through college." (pg 148) Then again when he tells Ponyboy to catch Sodapop, knowing that even out of shape, Ponyboy is the fastest runner: "Circle around and cut him off." (pg 149) Finally, Darry shows that he's very insightful for his age, and has empathy for the other boys when he talks about Sodapop's failed relationship with Sandy: "He told me he loved her, but I guess she didn't love him like he thought she did..." (pg 148)

Darry is a pretty complex character. A young orphan raising his two little brothers, he seems at the beginning of the novel to be an angry, scary guy, but he shows by the end of the novel that he's empathetic and loves his little brothers deeply.

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