Characterizations in "A&P"

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The Manifest Characters of “A&P” The more people make mistakes, the more they learn. In “A&P”, John Updike accounts for Sammy's mistake – quiting – by relaying the impulsive and immature nature of adolescent teens, then, having Sammy understand things are going to be tough now that he has no job, “...and my stomach kind of fell as I felt how hard the world was going to be to me hereafter.” (32). The speaker throughout the story is Sammy himself; a young man of nineteen years whom finds his boss who is the store's manager – Lengel – to be harsh and merciless when doing his job. In effect to his manager's behavior toward three young girls, Sammy makes an impulsive and immature decision – or mistake to many – by quitting his job and walking out on the store. Updike maneuvers right into explanation of character as soon as he opens the short story. Even if he is just describing them, “The one that caught my eye first was the one in the plaid green two-piece. She was a chunky kid, with a good tan and a sweet broad soft-looking can...” (1). A reader gets a feeling of the character of the narrator – in this case Sammy. He a typical, young, adolescent, teenage male who's nerves constrict at the site of a female, “and turned so slow it made my stomach rub the inside of my apron...” (6). He seemingly has no spark at his work place. Until three unfurled young girls walk into the A&P market wearing only bathing suits. One could only imagine what this teen was thinking, or that person can just read the story. The narrator – Sammy -- goes on to describe everyone like it is his job. Giving each of the 3 girls a nickname of sorts, even if he didn't quite mean to, “...there was this one, with one of those chubby berry-faces,... ...and a tall one,... ...and then the third one, that wasn't quite so tall. She was the queen.” (2). Through this description, one may

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