A little Adivce, if you would?

I am, yet again (and for those of who may remember) writing another narrative essay and feel the need for some feedback. Im not about to post my whole story, for I am fairly confident I have written and portrayed my message as best as it can be… and I would be happy with it except for one small, nibble of anxiety I have with my final line.

Ill write you my intro, so you know where this story is leading… and then include the last line. I feel the line may be too corny, or too cliche… so I’m hoping someone can help me out here.

You wouldn’t think much of him just by looking at him, strolling down the school halls, head shaved with sounds of 2Pac and Dr. Dre echoing from his twisted modern-day earphones. ‘He’s just one of them,’ you might say. ‘Another conformist of today’s mindless rap culture.’ Oftentimes you can find him living up to such a statement, lurking in the bushes during lunch hour puffing away at his daily dose of Mary Jane or roaming the city streets on a Friday night in a drunken haze with his friends, struggling to find the nearest coffee shop. I, however, have noticed inadvertently, and perhaps in spite of earlier impressions, that beneath the stereotypical exterior of this particular teenager, there lies a beautiful, flawed, complex individual I am proud to know.

(Here I explain my experiences I have had with him over the years and share a few moments where I identify with his humanity. and it all leads up to this line)

…To his friends he may walk the walk and talk the talk, but deep down inside I see a heart that truely beats the beat.

So, whast the verdict? corny or not so much?

The “beat” being what?

Walk the walk and talk the talk… okay.
But “beat the beat”?

I don’t think its corny, I think its kind of touching, in a mmm(?) sort of way.

But I use English in odd, odd ways so my opinion is probably not one you are looking for.

I think it’s sweet and it’s clear what you are getting at, but unless you use “beat” elsewhere in your essay as a metaphor for the same idea you are trying to convey here, it won’t really work. You’ll need to tie it back into the story to really pull it off.

JMO, I’m not an editor, just a bookworm.

Not to nitpick, but I really don’t think anyone calls it “Mary Jane” anymore, except as a joke. You could maybe say “light up” or something like that.

Unless of course your narrator is supposed to be out of it, or “Mary Jane” has made a comeback of which I am unaware…

As for the actual question, I didn’t like the last line. I think it’s corny. Sorry.

Aren’t you his friend, too?

I think the problem, really, is in trying to carry on the rhythm of a cliche. Anytime you write in phrases instead of words, you tread on dangerous ground. In this case, the use is justified since you use it to portray the unthinking surface impression, but you should break the form as you break that impression.

I also agree about “Mary Jane”. You might as well say “reefer”.