Growing up, we all succumbed to peer pressure. Whether it was to smoke, drink, or get a stupid haircut forever memorialized in our high school yearbook, we did it because all our friends thought it was a good idea. I, too, fell into peer pressure growing up, and it's something that many of us did because we thought it made us look cool. I got involved in a land war in Asia.
My mother forbade me, of course, but it's hard to argue with a seventeen-year-old dead set on impressing girls and looking cool in front of his friends. My friends and I had a grand plan, as many Asia-invading teens do, and we thought it was foolproof. Naturally it ended in disaster, and thankfully it didn't happen in the age of Youtube, so there's no embarrassing video evidence. My mother was furious, as she saw right through my lie that I was spending the night at a friend's house. She knew I was invading Asia; she could smell Moscow on my clothes.
I'm older and wiser now, and while I've grown out of my land war phase, there's still plenty of teens who think it's cool to try to topple Russia. I try to talk them out of it, but there's a lack of credibility on my end. "You did it when you were our age," they say, accusingly. I try to explain about my regrets of getting involved in such an ill-founded scheme, but they never listen. Nor did I when I lobbed the same accusation to my elders who tried to talk me out of it. It's a phase they have to go though, and we can only hope they survive.
I can only cringe when the subject turns to going up against a Sicilian when death was on the line.