"Separated by a lavender swing door," Leota's booth is described as "a den of curling fluid and henna packs." This metaphor connotes an image of seclusion and a sense of secrecy. In the booth, Mrs Fletcher feels "hidden" so she can "give her curiosity its freedom," which emphasizes that the booth is considered a place away from the norms of social interaction, according to which she would not be able to gossip so openly.
Simile: Hair like a Storm Cloud
Mrs. Fletcher's hair, described as "hennaed" to indicate previous beauty treatments, floats out "like a storm cloud," which not only connotes a dark, fluffy shape but also foreshadows the following argument between the two women.
Metaphor: Mrs. Fletcher being Cooked
When arguing about the damaged hair, Mrs. Fletcher accuses Leota: "Remember you cooked me fourteen minutes." This metaphor connotes the image of food being heated and makes the beauty treatment appear unhealthy.
Simile: Fred like a Rug
When Leota talks about her husband, she mentions that all "Fred does is lay around the house like a rug." This simile emphasizes that in her opinion he does not move at all, unable or unwilling to complete the simplest chores.
Metaphor: You're Just a Virgin
When Mrs. Fletcher expresses her concern that her baby belly can be seen in the beauty parlor, Leota says "you're just a virgin compared to Mrs. Montjoy." By using this metaphor and the story that follows about Mrs. Montjoy (who came for her shampoo and set on the day of giving birth to her child), Leota tries to convince Mrs. Fletcher that the baby belly is not evident.
Petrified Man Questions and Answers
The Question and Answer section for Petrified Man is a great
resource to ask questions, find answers, and discuss the novel.