Essay on Analysis of the Theme in TC Boyle's Greasy Lake

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The nature of life reveals, through its dark accidents, the limitations on being bad in order to be viewed as hip or cool and that there always will be someone who is worse than you. This is the lesson that the narrator learns in T.C. Boyle's "Greasy Lake" through a series of accidents as a result of his recklessness. The narrator, in the beginning of the story, believed himself and his friends to be dangerous characters and that "it was good to be bad, when you cultivated decadence like a taste." However, painful lessons were learned that reveals to the narrator that there will be a price to pay in trying to appear bad. It also goes to show him that there are limits to how far he is willing to go and not care about …show more content…

The narrator himself believed his friends to be dangerous because they were quick, slick, and could do something like drive "a Ford with lousy shocks over a rutted and gutted blacktop road at eighty-five while rolling a joint as compact as a Tootsie Roll Pop stick." It was nature to them to indulge their hedonistic desires as they howled at the stars, cranked the music to full blast, threw rotten eggs at hitchhikers and mail boxes, as they said a farewell to their sobriety. They wanted to be hip and to be hip they had to appear to be bad. And they were bad, that is until nature plays a twist on them when they make the error of enraging a greasy looking character that happens to be far worse than the three boys. Thus setting off a series of catastrophic events that shatters the narrator's long held romantic notion of being a bad character, a greasy character. The narrator, in keeping his bad character appearance, acted impulsively with little regard of the consequences but does find out that what he does can turn around on him, even if he wasn't at fault and did not deserve to be the one on the receiving end. Nevertheless, he made the choice to make a joke and surprised the wrong person in the wrong car, a greasy character who may have thought those three boys to be looking for a fight or perhaps intending to do far worse things. Compounded with the fact that his fling with a girl was interrupted, the greasy

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