19 Listen, my son, and be wise,
and set your heart on the right path:
20 Do not join those who drink too much wine
or gorge themselves on meat,
21 for drunkards and gluttons become poor,
and drowsiness clothes them in rags.
It may be rare for a child to set his heart on the wrong path, but many wander on to it anyway. Few people choose to waste seasons of their lives, instead they don’t choose not to, and the result is the same. Consider where you want to go, and take steps in that direction, or you may not like where you end up. Wisdom is like a map, revealing both highways and dead ends, benefiting all who put it to use.
“Do not join those who drink too much wine or gorge themselves on meat, for drunkards and gluttons become poor and drowsiness clothes them in rags.” Companions ought to be chosen based on character above all else, because “a companion of fools suffers harm.” There are far greater pleasures to be had than can be found in drink and debauchery, which thwart the plans of all who become drunkards and gluttons. Thinking they have chosen pleasure, they take the path of drowsiness and poverty, the sooner you part ways with them the better.