Study Guide

The Perks of Being a Wallflower Part 1, Chapter 10

By Stephen Chbosky

Part 1, Chapter 10

October 28, 1991

  • Charlie tells his reader that he's trying to participate more. We're all for that.
  • At the homecoming football game, he sits with Sam and Patrick as usual. This time, they invite him to a party afterward. He says yes, even though it's his first party. (First party!)
  • Well, he's seen a party before. Flashback time. But not in a fun, wavy flashback effect, nostalgic kind of way.
  • When Charlie's parents were out of town, his brother threw a huge party.
  • Sound fun? Well, big bro ordered Charlie to stay in his room, where all the attendees would put their coats. 
  • Long, traumatic story short: Charlie witnessed a date rape while hiding in the pile of coats. 
  • But it's only now, when he tells Sam and Patrick about what he saw, that he realizes that Dave raped the girl.
  • Charlie thinks he should tell someone, but Sam says no. She says there are too many "things you have to go through to prove it, especially in high school when the boy and girl are popular and still in love" (1.10.32).
  • Although Charlie doesn't tell anyone about the rape, he tells us that he let the air out of Dave's tires. He seems to get some satisfaction out of that, at least.
  • On the way to the party, Sam and Patrick drive through a tunnel and listen to the radio. After the song is over, Charlie says, "I feel infinite" (1.10.37). Deep, Charlie. 
  • But wait, we want to feel infinite! Too bad he doesn't say the name of the song.
  • At the party, Charlie meets a bunch of new people, including Bob, whose house the party is at.
  • Bob gives Charlie a brownie. Let's just say this brownie isn't how Betty Crocker would make it. Unless Betty Crocker was at Woodstock.
  • Charlie can't think of anything other than how much he wants a milkshake. This is what we call the munchies. So while Sam is making a milkshake, Charlie tries to find the bathroom.
  • Instead, he finds something else: Patrick making out with Brad, the quarterback.
  • Patrick tells Charlie that Brad is scared people will find out about the two of them, so Charlie agrees to keep their secret.
  • Before leaving the party, everyone does a toast to Charlie. Apparently they think he's really awesome, but Charlie is surprised that others think about him at all.
  • The dance is pretty uneventful, mainly because Charlie observes rather than participates. Hence, wallflower.
  • After the dance, they drive through the tunnel in Sam's pickup truck. Sam is standing in the back of the truck, and "the wind turned her dress into ocean waves" (1.10.117). Man, this kid is poetic.
  • They exit the tunnel and see the lights of the city. Charlie observes, "in that moment, I swear we were infinite" (1.10.118).

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