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In the novel Tangerine by Edward Bloor, Paul made many choices, both good and bad, and most of the time Paul’s choices ended with negative results. For example during the awards ceremony for the Lake Windsor Downs high school football team, Tino and Victor beat up Erik (Erik is Paul’s older brother) and Arthur Bauer ( Erik’s best friend). Right when Arthur and Erik got beat up, the football team and the football coaches tried to catch Tino and Victor and when that happened Paul jumped on a coach to help them get away.
When Paul attacked the coach he was later expelled from Tangerine Middle School. Also when Paul was hiding under the bleachers when Luis Cruz confronted Erik and Arthur, Paul decided not to speak up and stop the fight before it began and the fight caused an aneurism which ultimately killed Luis Cruz. After Luis Cruz died Paul felt guilty because he knew he could’ve prevented his death. Paul has also made good choices that had good results. A good choice Paul made was playing soccer for Tangerine Middle School.
It affected Paul because he made many friends on the soccer team. Another good choice was standing up to his older brother Erik. All of Paul’s life he had been scared of his brother but as the novel progressed, Paul’s courage began to build. Near the end of the novel Paul realized Erik and Arthur were losers and that only their own choices would only affect them. Paul finally stood up to them and that made Erik and Arthur realize that Paul wasn’t scared. One significant choice Paul made was when he stood up to Erik and Arthur. It happened when Arthur and Erik were saying ,“You’re going to pay for what happened tonight” (Page 261), and Arthur kept repeating whatever Erik said and Paul got fed up and said, “ Come on Erik let’s see if you can do any better with me than you did with Tino”(Page261) .
After that Paul said you killed Luis Cruz and Erik got angry slammed the baseball bat on the ground, and hit Arthur’s car. Paul made the choice because he realized Arthur and Erik were just thugs who acted like tough guys and that Paul was just tired of them acting like that so he got fed up with their act and stood up to them to show them he wasn’t scared of them anymore.
Another significant choice made by Paul was he demanded he get to go to Tangerine Middle School. He made the choice when his family was at a mass meeting after a sinkhole destroyed Lake Windsor Downs Middle School. Paul demanded he got to go to Tangerine Middle School and play for their soccer team. Paul made his mom feel guilty when he said, “Mom, you ruined my life at Lake Windsor Middle when you turned in that IEP.
This is your chance to un-ruin it”. (Pg.94) Paul felt that he deserved to get his way because of the IEP he was kicked off the Lake Windsor soccer team. His parents discussed it and finally agreed to let Paul have what he wanted and he got to go to Tangerine Middle School so he could play on their soccer team. Paul’s reaction to the choice being made was he felt that the heavens had opened up for him because he finally got what he wanted.
A positive choice Paul made was he decided to help save the Cruz family’s trees during the big freeze. The choice was made because Paul wanted to help the Cruz family because they were his friends. Paul had hurt his friendship with Tino Cruz with a previous choice that resulted in Tino getting in trouble. When he offered to help, Tino’s brother asked Paul why he was helping. Paul said, “Because we’re all War Eagles”, referring to his and Tinos’ soccer team. (Page218) It affected Paul by restoring his friendship with Tino.
Paul made many choices throughout the novel, some choices were good and some were bad, but either way every choice had some kind of effect on Paul. If Paul had decided to step in when Luis was about to fight Erik, Luis wouldn’t have died. Paul did mean well but he just didn’t have the courage to do the right thing. Paul has made many choices throughout the novel. Paul matured throughout the novel and learned from his choices and gained courage.