| Quote #1
"If you can picture a little dark puppy that had been kicked too many times and is lost in a crowd of strangers, you'll have Johnny." (1.49)
Ponyboy describes Johnny as totally isolated, like a lost puppy. The puppy in the crowd comparison shows that even though Johnny is surrounded by people, he's still isolated and alone.
| Quote #2
"Things are rough all over." (2.122)
This is what Cherry Valance tells Pony when they first meet. She's reminding him that everybody has problems that isolate them. She's right, but some problems are worse than others. At this point, she probably doesn't understand just how violently the Greasers are persecuted by the Socs.
| Quote #3
Things were rough all over, all right. All over the East Side. It just didn't seem right to me. (3.48)
Later, recalling Cherry's words, Pony refutes them. Poverty, he argues, presents a unique set of problems that the rich simply can't relate to. Poverty isolates people into certain areas where community services, opportunities, etc., are scarcer – in this case, the East Side. What do you think about the issue?