T. Coraghessan Boyle's Short Story 'Greasy Lake'

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Can an experience change a person’s outlook on life? One might think that they are the toughest person, but eventually they will realize they are not the only one. The exact same idea is shown in T. Coraghessan Boyle’s short story “Greasy Lake.” The short story “Greasy Lake” is about three friends, the narrator, Digby, and Jeff. One night the narrator and his friends go to Greasy Lake in the narrator’s mother’s car. Later, they encounter a man they refer to as a bad character and his girlfriend. The narrator knocks out the bad character and sexually assaults the girlfriend. After, they see people coming towards them. They begin to hide. The narrator jumps in Greasy Lake and finds a dead body. In the short story “Greasy Lake” the narrator’s thoughts, actions, and comments reveal the theme that an experience can make people realize there will always be people tougher than them. In the beginning of the story the narrator’s thoughts reveal that the narrator thinks he and his friends are bad characters. When the narrator is describing him and his friends, the narrator mentions that “We were all dangerous characters then. We wore torn-up leather jackets, slouched around with toothpicks in our mouths, sniffed glue and what somebody claimed was cocaine” (687). So, the narrator’s idea of a tough person is dressing like rebels and doing drugs. Latter, the narrator also mentions that “We drank gin and grape juice, Tango, Thunder-bird, and Bali Hai. We were nineteen. We were Bad” then

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