Today in our society peer pressure has a huge effect on how we make our life decisions. Many of teens are tempted everyday. Whether drinking, drugs or sex, temptation is alive and well. Everyone seems to experience it. It’s a natural part of life. I too have been pressured to do things I didn’t want to do. Recently I have been tempted to drink.
I was at work. My old job was a landscaping business that had all of their contracts through the water company. My bosses name was Michel. He was fairly young, maybe in his late twenties. He loved to party. He seemed to go out every night. He said he was enjoying life. We were in the truck going back to the water company because we were done for the day. Michel said, “Hey are you thirsty?” This is when the ninety-degree weather was in town and being behind a weed eater all day didn’t really help keep me cool. I said, “You bet.”
So we stop at Speedway and he tells me to wait in the truck, so I sat there listening to the radio. We always had to listen to country. I hate country music. Anyways, He comes strolling back out with a twelve pack of Coronas. I looked at him. His face seemed like it might explode if he tried to stretch his smile any further. He jumps in the truck stirring up the dust and puts the beer between us. Michel pulls two out and hands me one. “This is the best thing to keep you cool,” he stated.
I stared at the Coronas wondering if I really should drink one. A million thoughts must have been going through my head at this exact moment. Should I drink? What if I get caught? What if I don’t? What if I turn it down and he makes fun of me? My final thought at this moment was who cares what he thinks. I handed him back the beer and said, ” Why don’t you keep it, I’m not that much of a drinker.”
Michel looked at me, and then looked at the beer. Then he said, “Ok man your loss.” That’s all he said. We drove back to the water company and I got in my car and went home. Who would have thought all I had to do was say no.
This reminds me of the great Sir Gawain, one of the Knights of the Round Table. Gawain always tried to do what is right. He believed in chivalry. On new years day a green knight showed up and he challenged anyone to give him one blow to the neck with an axe. Then one year later, this person must find the green knight to receive a blow from him. When Gawain hit the green knight, the green knight grabbed his head, got up and said ill see you in one year. Gawain held against peer pressure well. Gawain finds a castle on Christmas Eve.
The lord of this castle was a jolly man named Bertilak. Gawain was once hit on by Bertilaks wife. She was intent on the idea that he would sleep with her but he would not give in to this great temptation. He refused and made excuses so he would not hurt her feelings (56). Gawain knew that he was going to die and he was going to get his head lopped off. His guide told him to run and he wouldn’t tell on him. Gawain refused and went to face his fate (85). It turns out that the green knight was Bertilak and he spared Gawain’s life because Gawain didn’t sleep with his wife.
Now I remember in pressured situations to keep my cool. If I am ever put in a place of pressure again I will think, “What would Gawain do?” I will try to act as a noble person and not think of my reputation, but think of my character.