The common theme of these two stories is that life can be tedious and can taint the priorities of a person. The main characters in both stories have very structured schedules each day that prevent them from enjoying spontaneity. A major downfall of their singularity is their frustration with minute details and flaws in their lives. Maria broke into tears upon realizing that she left a plum cake on the tram. The narrator in “Araby” could not enjoy his days because he was too preoccupied in thinking about the bazaar. These examples of emotional discomfort over seemingly insignificant events prove just how monotonous their lives truly are. The characters exhibit similar traits, which can be analyzed in their walking routes. Just as Maria in “Clay” allots certain amounts of time for her shopping ventures, the narrator in “Araby” perfectly times his morning commute to school so that he can pass by the girl he likes (Mangum’s sister). Both characters are focusing less on their actual desires (to shop and to flirt), as they focus more on having control over each detail in their simple lives.