The person who guides me in my incessant quest for cool is my ex-A.P. U.S. History teacher, Joel Wright. Joel Wright has shaped the person I have become today. He gave me a great friend ,who understood what I was going through as a teenager in Lonoke, AR. As everyone knows it is very easy for kids to be lead astray by things such as peer pressure, social acceptance, and even sometimes just plain boredom. Being from Lonoke I was subject to all three of these commonalities. During my freshman and sophomore years in high school I very much indulged in the temptations presented by these three factors in my life. Doing everything from drinking and smoking to skipping school for no reason. Consequently, I was becoming a person I didn’t know. Someone I had nothing in common with at all. My idea of fun was not being unaware of the physical world around me, however many of my fellow peers felt that this particular type of unaware was relief, and even today many of them still do. Fortunately, Joel found me before I had completely forgotten myself.
Joel came to Lonoke High School in my junior year. For the first few weeks of class I referred to him (outside of class, of course) as the douche bag with a speech impediment. However, as I began to get to know Joel I realized how awesomely, ridiculously cool he was. He epitomized everything I, the old Logan, wanted. I began hanging out with him everyday at lunch. Where we would sit in his classroom and talk about everything we could think of from politics to philosophy to my lifestyle. It disturbed him to see the duality to my personality. The outstanding student in the classroom as compared to the typical stoner outside of class. He asked me the most important question of my life while sitting in that room, and to this day is still one of the most important questions I’ve ever been asked, “Why do you choose to do that?” I had no answer for him. I did not know why. There was no logic to my behavior, and I was ashamed to realize that I was just trying to fit the social schematics of Lonoke. Joel wasn’t a stiff. He isn’t against having fun, or doing things you shouldn’t, but he didn’t want to see me ruin myself because of the attitude of every other kid in Lonoke. I listen to Joel over all other people because he is my friend, my idol. I hope that someday I am able to impact someone with as much magnitude as he had upon my life. I hear Joel everyday. He is my decision. I am a version of him. I am based upon the archetype of Joel Wright, and I have no qualms with that observation.