The story "A&P," narrated by Sammy, a young cashier at the supermarket A & P. One day, three girls in bathing suits stop in to buy some snacks. Sammy is immediately struck by a
“chunky” girl with a “sweet broad soft-looking can.” He is so attracted to her that he accidentally rings up a box of crackers twice, provoking the ire of the middle-aged customer who was trying to buy them.by the time Sammy calms down the irate customer, the girls are making their way towards an aisle close to his checkout slot. He notices that the girls are barefoot. None of them are particularly beautiful; he characterizes the first as chunky and “pale” and the second as “the kind of girl that other girls think is very ‘striking’ and ‘attractive’ but never quite makes it.”
However, he quickly identifies the third as their leader, noticing that she walks slightly ahead of her friends and almost seems to be showing them how to command attention. He infers that it was her idea to come to A & P in the first place. He calls her the "queen" or, later, "quinnie."
Sammy notices that the straps of the queen’s bathing suit…