Transcript of The Catcher in the Rye: Timeline
The Descriptions of Holden Caulfield's events The Catcher in the Rye: Timeline After receiving notice that he's been kicked out of Pencey for failing four out of five classes, Holden goes to say good-bye to Mr. Spencer. Holden walks around until morning. While he was walking, he thinks of an escape fantasy where he can hitchhike out west and live as a deaf-mute so he doesn't have to listen or talk to anybody. His history teacher, Mr. Spencer, chews him out for failing and Holden responds by trying to make his teacher feel better about having to flunk him. On the train to New York, Holden runs into a classmate's (Ernie Morrow) mother. She seems pretty sexy for her age. Holden lies about her son, saying how he's a good guy, humble and modest. When actually, Holden thinks the exact opposite. Holden invites her to have a drink with him, but she declines. The conversation in Ackley's room doesn't lead onto a conversation, so he takes off. Seeing the empty corridor, he decides to get the heck out of Pencey and bum around New York for a few days. (It's Saturday, and he can't go home until Wednesday unless he wants his parents to know he's been kicked out.) Before Stradlater leaves on his date with Jane, he asks Holden to write a page in his composition book for him. Holden writes it for him, but about his dead brother's baseball mitt, which has poems written on it in green ink. After his talk with Spencer, Holden goes back to his dorm. When he gets there, he messes around with his dorm-mate, Ackley, and finds out that his roommate, Stradlater, has a date with his old friend, Jane Gallagher. This bothers Holden, so he spends more time with Ackley to avoid thinking about Jane and Stradlater. In fact, the mitt is just a catapult for a digression on Allie and the impact that his death had on Holden. In response to his death at the time, he would break all the windows in the garage. When Stradlater returns from his date, Holden provokes a fight. He's incredibly upset at the thought that Stradlater might have hooked up with a girl that Holden might of had intense feelings with. Being smaller and weaker than Stradlater, Holden loses the fight and wanders into Ackley's room, only to think about becoming a monk in a monastery. After arriving in New York City, Holden thinks about calling Jane, or his sister Phoebe, or his brother D.B. He ends up not calling anyone after thinking over it for a while. Once he got into a cab, Holden asks the taxi driver where the ducks go in the winter. The driver responded to him how he doesn't know. Later, Holden gets a room at a hotel and calls a women named Faith Cavendish who he has never met. But he has heard that she likes to "do it" every once in a while. But when she offers to meet him the next night, he chickens out and goes down to the bar. At the bar, the waiter refuses to serve him alchohol since he doesn't have his I.D. with him. After seeing a blonde across the lavender room with her two 'moron' friends, he asks her for a dance. He ends up feeling sorry for them since they can't hold a conversation and buys them all drinks. When the women leave (since they are done with talking to him), Holden leaves the Lavender room to the lobby and starts thinking about Jane Gallagher again. His relationship with her, we find out, is romantic, but not very sexual in any way. Holden gets into another cab (where he asks the driver again where the ducks go in the winter. He responds sarcastically to Holden), and ends up at Ernie's, a nightclub in Greenwich Village (where apparently you can drink at sixteen). He runs into an ex-girlfriend of his older brother, D.B. She annoys him and, when she invites him to join her and her date, he leaves to avoid having to do so. After getting away from D.B.'s ex-girlfriend, Holden walks all the way to the hotel (41 blocks). Once he's back, Maurice, the elevator man, asks him if he'd like a visit from a prostitute: it's fifteen bucks for all night, five bucks for a "throw." Holden accepts his offer. The prostitute's name is Sunny and she's not much older than Holden. When she shows up in his room, Holden realizes he's not so much in the mood and he'd rather just talk. Sunny's not used to people that are not in the mood, so she decides to leave. She tries to charge ten dollars, but Holden only pays her five, since that's what Maurice had told him. Holden heads home to see Phoebe. He finds out that his parents aren't home, so he chats with his sister for a bit. When Phoebe guesses that he's been kicked out and asks him what he wants to do with his life, he answers that he wants to be a catcher in the rye. He imagines a big field of rye, with all these little kids playing in it, and he catches them just before they accidentally fall off a big cliff. Maurice and Sunny show up looking for the other 5 dollars. Maurice shoves Holden and, after being named a moron by Holden, punches him in the stomach as well. Once they leave, Holden imagines that Maurice has shot him in the gut. As Holden tries to fall asleep after being beaten up by Maurice, he says he would've jumped out the window and committed suicide if he wasn't worried about everyone below looking at his gory body afterwards. The next day, Holden calls Sally Hayes. They arrange to meet for an afternoon movie (even though Holden hates the movies since they are phony). Holden puts his bags at Grand Central Station and has breakfast at a little diner, where he donates ten dollars to two nuns and discusses Romeo and Juliet with one of them. He has a hard time getting over the fact that a nun could like a sexy play like that. Holden decides to buy the Little Shirley Beans record for Phoebe. On the way to the store, he overhears (and possibly mishears) a little boy singing, "If a body catch a body coming through the rye." After breakfast, Holden goes to the park to wait for Sally. While there, he runs into a little kid who knows Phoebe and says she might have gone to the museum with her class. He helps her tighten her skates. Holden remembers it is Sunday (which means Phoebe is not on a field trip), but he decides to go to the museum anyway. By the time he gets there, he's no longer in the mood to go in; he heads off to meet Sally. Holden sees the movie with Sally, makes out with her, and tells her he loves her. They go ice skating. He brings up the possibility that they could run away together, and yells at her when she's less than enthusiastic about it. They fight and then Holden leaves. He tries calling Jane but nobody answers. Instead, he arranges to meet his friend Carl Luce that evening at the Wicker Bar. Prior to meeting with Carl, Holden goes to a movie to pass time. That evening, Holden gets very drunk. Carl gets fed up because all Holden wants is to talk about sex. He tells Holden he needs to grow up. Since he is very drunk, he calls Sally and makes a fool out of himself. Holden calls Mr. Antolini, an old English teacher of his, and arranges to head over to his place. He hides while his mother comes home and talks with Phoebe, then borrows his sister's Christmas money to take with him. Holden goes to the Antolinis' apartment. There, he talks about how and why he flunked out of Pencey. Holden has a difficult time paying attention while Mr. Antolini gives him a long speech about how Holden is setting himself up for a bad fall. Mr. Antolini argues that education is hugely important. Once Holden has gone to sleep on the couch, he wakes up to find Mr. Antolini sitting on the floor beside the couch. Mr. Antolini is petting his hair while he sits there. Holden freaks out, thinking Mr. Antolini is coming on to him, and leaves, even though it's the middle of the night. He imagined of marrying another deaf-mute in this fantasy, so they can live in the woods, and hide their children away from the world. But first Holden has to go say good-bye to Phoebe. Full transcript
At lunch, Phoebe shows up to meet Holden, but with a suitcase. She wants to go with him. Holden says no, and she gets into a bad mood. He heads to her school and sends a note in for her to meet him at lunch so he can give her money back before he leaves. Even though shes in a bad mood, she won't let him out of her sight as he leads her to the zoo and then the carousel. There, he tells her he won't leave, but instead he'll come home with her. Holden does go home with Phoebe. Later, he is in therapy and is being asked whether he will apply himself in school next year. Holden says he doesn't know, and says how should he even know. He also says he wishes he had never started talking about any of this in the first place. Holden finally adds that once he started telling these stories, he began missing everybody.