Study Guide

Katherine "Kippy" Strednicki in She's Come Undone

By Wally Lamb

Katherine "Kippy" Strednicki

Room and Bored

Kippy is Dolores's roommate at Merton College and she hates our leading lady the second she sees her. If we were as obsessed with Snoopy as Kippy is (she writes on Snoopy stationery, throws stuff away in her Snoopy wastebasket, probably wears Snoopy underpants), we wouldn't be so quick to judge. Kippy obviously hasn't gotten that memo, though, and she freaks out when she sees that Dolores is fat, hating her before she even realizes that everything Dolores said in her letters was a lie. How's that for snap judgment? Pretty snappy, we'd say.

It turns out that Kippy is just as much of a liar as Dolores is. She lies about sleeping with Dante, and she cheats on him by going out with Eric, a frat boy jerk. Dolores calls them "a kind of centaur—half bastard, half b****" (13.87), which, to be fair, seems like a pretty fair assessment.

When Kippy breaks her collarbone, Dolores uses this as her in. She becomes Kippy's servant, bringing her soda and doing her laundry, and she seems to think this is what friendship looks like. The honeymoon comes to a quick end, though, when Eric pins Dolores down for some non-consensual "hump time" (15.49), bringing back all the memories of being raped by Jack. In response, Dolores quits school, runs away, and never sees Kippy again.