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Quotes

Quote #16

I held hands with her all the time, for instance. That doesn't sound like much, I realize, but she was terrific to hold hands with. […] We'd get into a goddam movie or something, and right away we'd start holding hands, and we wouldn't quit till the movie was over. And without changing the position or making a big deal out of it. You never even worried, with Jane, whether your hand was sweaty or not. All you knew was, you were happy. You really were. (11.6)

Holden doesn’t care about sex—he cares about companionship and emotion. And for some reason, he doesn’t think he can have both with Jane.

Quote #17

The other thing I just thought of. One time, in this movie, Jane did something that just about knocked me out. The newsreel was on or something, and all of a sudden I felt this hand on the back of my neck, and it was Jane's. It was a funny thing to do. I mean she was quite young and all, and most girls if you see them putting their hand on the back of somebody's neck, they're around twenty-five or thirty and usually they're doing it to their husband or their little kid – I do it to my kid sister Phoebe once in a while, for instance. But if a girl's quite young and all and she does it, it's so pretty it just about kills you. (11.6)

Jane's action toward Holden—putting her hand on the back of his neck—is similar to his kissing her everywhere but her lips. They both take a more emotion-based attitude toward each other. It’s like they go out of their way to avoid being sexual. Hm. It is starting to sound a lot like they both have a history of abuse, isn’t it?

Quote #18

"Uh huh. Well, how 'bout it? Y'innarested? Five bucks a throw. Fifteen bucks the whole night." He looked at his wrist watch. "Till noon. Five bucks a throw, fifteen bucks till noon."

"Okay," I said. It was against my principles and all, but I was feeling so depressed I didn't even think. That's the whole trouble. When you're feeling very depressed, you can't even think.

[…]

I looked at the red thing with my number on it, on my key. "Twelve twenty-two,"

I said. I was already sort of sorry I'd let the thing start rolling, but it was too late now. (13.13-19)

And here we go again. Notice that Holden says "Okay" because he's feeling depressed. We've seen that his isolation makes him feel this way, so it makes sense that he's looking for companionship to make him feel better. Unfortunately, prostitutes aren't so much companions as people to have sex with, and we know for Holden, sex and emotion are sort of at odds. So basically, this is doomed from the start.

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