"On the Bridge" and Other Stories

"On the Bridge" and Other Stories Metaphors and Similes

Like a Machine Gun (Simile)

After the men in the black car take the exit ramp and confront Seth and Adam on the bridge, Seth feels his heart beating "like a machine gun." In comparing the rapidity of Seth's heartbeat to the firing of a machine gun, Strasser uses a simile to emphasize the quick and violent movement of Seth's heart as he responds to the danger of the situation.

Scared the Crap Out of Her (Metaphor)

After pretending to throw a rock into traffic, the driver of a blue sedan raises her arms in defense and briefly loses control of her vehicle. Adam grins and remarks to Seth that he "scared the crap out of her." Using a vulgar metaphor, Adam delights in his actions by suggesting the woman's fear was great enough to cause her involuntarily to evacuate her bowels.

His Lungs Cried for Air (Metaphor)

When the husky guy presses his weight into Seth, pinning Seth to the hood of the car, Seth's capacity to breathe is severely limited. Strasser writes that "his lungs cried for air." In this metaphor, Strasser emphasizes Seth's desperate need to breathe by personifying Seth's lungs as crying out like a person or creature in distress.