Chapters 11 & 12
Here we learn about Holden’s relationship with Jane as he reminisces about a
summer they spent together. Their family summer homes adjoined and the two became very close. Jane was the only person who Holden confided in concerning Allie’s baseball glove.
Although it is late, Holden is not tired and takes a taxi to Greenwich
Holden arrives at Ernie’s, an old haunt of his brother, D.B., and again
indulges in people watching, listening to their phony conversations.
sees a former girlfriend of his brother, Lillian Simmons, who not-surprisingly
Holden finds annoying. She is on a date with a naval officer and
invites Holden to join them. He declines and has to leave Ernie’s
to get away from her.
Here Holden remembers his happy summer with Jane who through his eyes seems
almost too good to be true.
One of the few people Holden can relate to is Jane, who has a few quirks, but Holden loves them all. Their relationship was physically mild, holding hands constantly. Her drunken stepfather dominates Jane and Holden does no wish to face the problems Jane clearly has at home. He is content merely to offer comfort and to continue the premise that she lives in innocence, untouched by the harsh world.
There is an interesting dialogue between Holden and the taxi driver,
Horwitz, about the ducks and fish in Central Park.
The aspect to take out of this is the way Salinger encapsulates the sharp,
rough conversational styles of the two parties. They act like old chums who enjoy a good debate.
Lillian Simmons is a harmless, bubbly Barbie doll that Holden finds irritating.