Hero-Family of the Year
“You ought to be able to stick in one of those big cases and just leave them alone. I know that’s impossible, but it’s too bad anyway” (Salinger 122). Holden wishes everything to stay the same like the art in the museum. He wants to keep intangible qualities of his youth and innocence and fears losing those qualities in the processes of becoming a adult.“ ‘Well you know the about the ducks that swim around in it?In the springtime and all? Do you know where they go in the wintertime, by chance’ ”(Salinger 81). The ducks represent Holden’s childhood. Ducks fly back to the pond during the winter, showing that Holden desires to be able to return to his young self even after maturing. “Baby needs some protection, But I’m a kid like everyone else.” He is not ready to be an adult yet, he is still holding onto the carefree nature of childhood.
Stay Young- Oasis
"They're making you feel so ashamed, Making you taking the blame" (Oasis 5-6). Like Holden in the situation of failing classes, the adults are pressuring him and wants him to see his shortcomings in school. His former teacher, Mr.Spencer is lecturing him about his failures at Pencey: "He started handling my exam paper like it was a turd or something"(Salinger 11). Making Holden feel his effort was useless, shows adults are putting him down. Holden says that all the adults are "phony" and they try to act as if they're perfect, having the audacity to judge him (Salinger 131).
Gravity- John Mayer
"Gravity is working against me/And gravity wants to bring me down" (Mayer 1-2). Holden tries to connect with other people like Sally, Carl, Luce, Mr.Antolini, Bernice, but eventually gets turned down or they become irritated by him. Sally declines Holden's offer about running away with him by saying, " 'You can't just do something like that' " Salinger 132). Holden often escapes reality by meeting up with old friends like Sally, thinking he could have a valued conversation with them about societies corruption, but she too is corrupt like the rest of the world. "Nobody’d move. . . . Nobody’d be different. The only thing that would be different would be you" (Salinger 121). Holden uses the second-person pronoun “you” instead of the first-person “me.” It seems to be an attempt to distance himself from the inevitable process of change.
Lost Star- Maroon 5
"Please don't see just a boy caught up in dreams and fantasies/Please see me reaching out for someone I can't see" (Maroon 1-2). Holden tries to isolate him self from the world, but ends up feeling lonely and desires relationships. Holden tries to persuade Sally into running away with him and asks "Will you do it with me? Please!" (Salinger 132). Holden just wants to be with someone who understands him, who is innocent. Holden talks about giving: "old Sally Hayes a buzz" or "old Jane a buzz"(Salinger 105). "The whole arrangement’s designed for men who, at some time or other in their lives, were looking for something their own environment couldn’t supply them with. . . . So they gave up looking” (Salinger 187).He goes to Mr. Antolini’s because he feels he can trust and confide in him—it seems to be his final chance to save himself. But Holden’s interaction with Mr. Antolini is the event that precipitates his full-blown breakdown.
Hailey's Song- Eminem
"Suddenly I'm not crazy/It all makes sense when I look into her eyes" (Eminem 17-18). Holden was struggling so much with his life he decided to run away but after talking to Poebe reveals the oversimplification of his worldview. " '. . . I’m standing on the edge of some crazy cliff. What I have to do, I have to catch everybody if they start to go over the cliff—I mean if they’re running and they don’t look where they’re going I have to come out from somewhere and catch them ' "(Salinger 173). Holden himself realizes this to a degree when he acknowledges that his idea is not realistic. " 'That’s all I’d do all day. I’d just be the catcher in the rye and all' " (Salinger 173). His catcher in the rye fantasy reflects his innocence, his belief in pure, uncorrupted youth, and his desire to protect that spirit