Study Guide

Ordinary People Chapter 3

By Judith Guest

Chapter 3

  • Conrad waits for his friend Lazenby to take him to school.
  • Carpooling with Lazenby are Van Buren and Stillman. They do what teen boys do: check out girls and make crass comments.
  • Stillman's remarks don't sit well with Conrad, but he keeps his feelings to himself.
  • In chorus, Conrad chats with Jeannine Pratt, who is a babe; then he has to go to swim practice.
  • Salan, the coach, asks Jarrett if he's on medication and if they gave him electroshock therapy in the hospital.
  • Medication: no. Electroshock: yes. Yikes.
  • After swim practice, Lazenby takes Conrad home.
  • Conrad gazes at his First Place swim team photo and reminisces about liking swimming and being good at it.
  • His mother comes home, and Conrad unintentionally surprises her.
  • Conrad asks how the golf game was. "Fine. Cold" (3.84), his mom says.
  • Then Conrad tells Beth that he did well at swim practice. "Good" (3.89), she says, and heads to her room. She's a woman of few words.