Study Guide

I Am the Cheese Chapter 9

By Robert Cormier

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Chapter 9

  • Adam is outside a Howard Johnson's (a famous hotel/restaurant chain) and sees a telephone booth. (Before the days of cell phones, you had to use a pay phone if you wanted to contact someone from the road.)
  • He wants to call Amy Hertz but he knows she'd still be in school. Remember, he's playing hooky.
  • Dude really has to pee at this point, and he's pretty hungry. He remembers how his mother always tried to get him to eat more (don't we all... ).
  • He heads toward the Howard Johnson's to pee and remembers how he used to call it Orange Johnson (this chain is known for its bright orange color). This memory makes him feel safe.
  • Adam is worried about his bike getting stolen, but he figures out a way to keep an eye on it while he eats. After eating and peeing, he is in the phone booth, where a male telephone operator connects him to Amy Hertz's number. (We haven't needed operators to help us place phone calls since long before Shmoop was born, so check out "Characters: Operator" for some explanation.)
  • No one answers at Amy's house. Didn't see that one coming.
  • Despite having a headache, and more claustrophobic feelings, Adam heads on his way toward the next town, Carver.
  • But first, he checks to make sure he's not being followed. He's not. Still eerie.
  • He pedals along and starts to sing "The Farmer in the Dell," but then he stops because he's tired.

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