Norman starts off the story by driving around a lake in his fathers neighborhood, thinking of his past. As he is driving, he thinks about somewhat morose things such as Max Arnold, who drowned in that lake and also thinks of his high school girlfriend Sally, who is now married. Also Norman mentions the death of Kiowa, who was left being in a sewage mud pit. Norman was there and could've helped him, but he couldn't stand the stench so he left him behind. Ever since, Norman has felt a bit of guilt for leaving man behind for something somewhat selfish. In the beginning of the story, Norman is mostly thinking of his father, and what pragmatic approach his father expects of him to come home and receive these medals. Norman lists all the seven medals that he won to his father, but one that Norman really wanted to mention was the Silver Star, and how he almost got it. Norman than remembered how is father never seemed to care what Norman had in mind, the television seemed more important to him especially the baseball game that night. To me, that results the way Norman has the lack of confidence to speak up.
In Perks of Being a Wallflower, Charlie is a fifteen year old boy who starting off high school and wants to make a good mark of the year. Recently in the story, his friend had just committed suicide, which relates to also the death of Max Arnold who was Norman's friend. However, Charlie feels alone ever since the incident occurred and can't figure out a way to open himself up. He especially cannot afford to start of his high school year as a "no-body". Sadly, that is how it begins, he feels that no one notices him or even wants to make word with him; he feels alone.
In these two stories, courage is eventually established in these characters own ways. Norman and Charlie share a death experience that affected them and their ways to elaborate themselves. Norman seems to mention a few of the phrases repetitively, "...would've said..."" ...could've said..." and "...couldn't say...". Norman seems to show hesitant when he uses these phrases, and seems as if he is a coward. However, this seems to be the reason he blames himself for not even trying, because he feels that no one would mind. Now, Charlie is also hesitant because he wants to make sure to take the right step. Charlie learns how to adapt into a friendship with people and does it! He meets his two new closest friends, Sam and Patrick, who show Charlie their ways of bold and fearless characteristics.
As this chapter ends, we notice the very first sentence in the following chapter, Notes, that Norman Bowker hung himself with a jump-rope tied to a water pipe. Reading that shocked me and made it seem implausible to realize, but it showed how much it really got to Norman's mind and took charge in his actions.
Valentine, Aoife. Film Review: Perks of Being a Wallflower. Digital image. The University Observer. N.p., 2 Oct. 2012. Web. 16 Oct. 2013.