The Proud Coward A biography of a time when ones circumstances must be stood for or trampled on.

Essay by KalswaUniversity, Bachelor'sA, April 2004

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I remember growing up, driving down the road in Escalon, a developing housing community where ranches and almond groves were still dominant. Kenny Rogers was on the radio singing "The coward of the county," the words saying, "Promise me, son, not to do the things I've done. Walk away from trouble if you can. It won't mean you're weak if you turn the other cheek. I hope you're old enough to understand. Son, you don't have to fight to be a man." In that story, the son was known as the coward of the county. I can relate.

I was a carefree feller. However, on a hot summer afternoon, the way I perceived myself had changed. From that day, a coward was the perception of me. I go back to the incident; I try to justify repeatedly in my head, my cowardliness. After all these years, I think to fight unnecessarily is not of wise acumen, and one must swallow his pride.

Nevertheless, to fight for a cause or belief, then his fight has purpose. Yet, I was still convinced that I was a coward.

Two friends and I were at a corner market in lower Ontario. Rusty and I were sitting in the car ( Rusty in the back seat ) with the windows and doors open, while Dustin was a few feet in front of us talking to Tony on the payphone. In my rear view mirror, I thought nothing of an older car, white two door Oldsmobile Cutlass leaving. The car had gone off the curb scraping the bottom, sounding like a rattled cage on a gritty road. Slowly, the car had pulled up next to my window. In it were two men in their twenties, both black and looking like gang bangers. The driver was very...