Me as a Character

Charlotte Lapointe

Henry’s Physicality

  1. How would other people describe the character’s physical appearance? “Then the boy screamed it out, ‘Mommy! What’s wrong with that man’s face?'” (Bukowski 128).
  2. Does the character have any permanent physical defects, such as nearsightedness, or temporary ones, such as a broken leg? If so, what are they? “About 8th grade, going into the 9th, I broke out with acne. Many of the guys had it but not like mine. Mine was really terrible. I was the worst case in town. I had pimples and boils all over my face, back, neck, and some on my chest.” (Bukowski 122).

Henry’s Inner Life

  1. How would you describe the character’s imagination? Especially in the earlier parts of the novel where Henry is younger, the reader can tell that the character is quite imaginative. In his head he is an amazing athlete and a brute. He is the tough football player that the other children fear. We know this , however, to be untrue.
  2. How would you describe the character’s outlook on life? “I couldn’t believe that I was as bad as they wished me to be. I swung wildly but with force. I knew I was strong, and maybe like they said, ‘crazy’.” (Bukowski 33).
  3. Does the character tend to be dominant or submissive with others, and why? Both: “He was so pitiful that I couldn’t tell him to get lost. He was like a mongrel dog, starved and kicked. Yet it didn’t make me feel good going around with him. But since I knew that mongrel dog feeling, I let him hang around.” (Bukowski 94). “Mr. Knox tightened his grip. He had a hand like a vise. I could see every pore in his face. “Tough guys don’t scream, do they?’ I couldn’t look at his face anymore. I put my face down on the desk. ‘Am I a tough guy?’ asked Mr. Knox. He squeezed harder. I had to scream, but I kept it as quiet as possible so no one in the classes could hear me. ‘Now, am I a tough guy?’ I waited. I hated to say it. Then I said, ‘Yes’.” (Bukowski 37).
  4. What is the character’s biggest success in life so far? “Never such a day. Never such a home run by a first grader!”. (Bukowski 33).
  5. What is the character’s greatest psychological weakness? “The knowledge that I didn’t have the courage to do what was necessary made me feel terrible. I began to feel physically sick. I was weak. I didn’t want it to happen yet I couldn’t think of any way to stop it.” (Bukowski 89). “He was so pitiful that I couldn’t tell him to get lost. He was like a mongrel dog, starved and kicked. Yet it didn’t make me feel good going around with him. But since I knew that mongrel dog feeling, I let him hang around.” (Bukowski 94).

Charlotte’s Inner Life

  1. How would you describe the character’s imagination? She has a very big imagination, mostly because her head never really ‘shuts up’. She cannot ever stop thinking and overthinking, which leaves a lot of room for imagination. 
  2. How does the character rate in terms of common sense and sound judgment? She is a very rational person and will often make good decisions based on her common sense and sound judgement.
  3. How would you describe the character’s outlook on life? Again she is pretty rational, which makes for a more pessimistic outlook on life. She will not sugarcoat her future and will look at it in terms of facts. She will allow herself to hope once in a while, but has learned that this often leads to disappointment. 
  4. Does the character tend to be dominant or submissive with others, and why? Because  she lacks self-confidence, she is a lot more submissive with others. She likes to believe that she can be dominant, and she can be at times, but really she never goes out of line or tries to control others.
  5. What is the character’s greatest talent? Gymnastics and writing.
  6. What is the character’s greatest lack of talent? Speaking in front of crowds.
  7. Up to now, what has been the character’s main ambition? She plans to become a veterinarian one day.
  8. In order of importance, identify the character’s three greatest fears. Being forgotten, change and loss.
  9. What are three things the character most values? Honesty, compassion and love.
  10. What is the character’s greatest psychological weakness? Anxiety and lack of confidence.
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