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Whether it is the thoughts of the characters that Gilb includes for us to read or the dialog that takes place between them, we are able to see that the characters are not exaggerated in any way from the people we meet and greet everyday. The portrayal of the characters is outstanding because from the moment we are introduced to them to the time they separate, we can see where each character is coming from and understand their motives for their actions. The gender roles are first present when Jake, one of the main characters, is giving a vivid sketch a car he’d rather be driving.

From the description of the car we can see that he is interested in features that would attract and impress women and these same features are not particularly suited for him, “the fact was that he’d probably have to change his whole style” (219). Jake goes on to think about other features that would entice women, aside from his car, “exotic colognes, plush, dark nightclubs, maitais and daiquiris, necklaced ladies in satin gowns” (219). From this, the audience is well aware that Jake is a ladies man or a play boy. After we see Jake for who he is, we are in presented with the conflict and another character, Mariana.

This new character comes across as shy, clueless and a little persistent for information. Upon the introduction of the both Mariana and the conflict, the audience is given even more insight into Jakes character as he thinks the random encounter will result with a date over breakfast or coffee (220). After Mariana politely rejects his offers, we can see that she might be doing so out of shyness because she avoids giving direct answers. Jake immediately switches his position on the situation once he realizes that she will not budge for his confident attitude or smooth-talking skills.

The transition from positions looks so genuine it is hardly noticeable as the audience reads. He recognizes the rejection taking place and stays calm while he feeds Mariana false information about everything that she inquires about. This is a turning point for Jake because he cannot pursue Mariana or ever see her again for the lies he is entangling her in. Mariana displays uncertainty when Jake offers to pay for the repairs without involving the insurance companies. Specifically she says, “I don’t think my dad would let me do that” (221).

She approaches the offer with caution but declines and opts for the appropriate channels for the matter to be taken through. Another key event that takes place is the parting of the two acquaintances. Mariana went through a change from the beginning of the story from being uninterested in Jake to giving him her number and saying, “Call me” (221). Jake on the other hand felt “both proud and sad” (221). Jake feels proud because of the spectacular performance he was able to just put on and he scored Mariana’s phone number. The sadness is stemming from how he isn’t able to call the number he just got and it is his own fault why.

Jake didn’t go through any transformations of character and the story suggests that he plans to stay the same was he is. This short story is easy to follow because the gender associations go along with the norm of the everyday characters we bump into on the street. The man is a clever liar and smooth-talking player; the woman is an attractive but shy individual who comes across as oblivious to his lies. There is no difficulty merging our own personal perceptions of male and female characters with Jake and Mariana. Gilb expects us to make this connection for us to have a better appreciation of the work as a whole.