Study Guide

Bill Bailey in Ballad of the Sad Cafe and Other Stories

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Bill Bailey

Bill Bailey, Elizabeth's new husband, is "a lumbering red-haired man with a deliberate manner," seemingly un-bothered by his wife's ex visiting for dinner. She's chill, he's chill, everybody's chill.

When Elizabeth and Bill's son ask why his mother seems so familiar with Ferris's father, Bill takes up the slack, answering "the questioning child" with a breezy "your mother and Mr. Ferris were once married. Before you were born—a long time ago" (Sojourner.48).

His security in himself and his family life creates a great foil for Ferris's own life confusions.

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