Thursday, September 21, 2006


Dear Samuel,

Nice talking to you today, happy birthday by the way. Sorry we had to cut our conversation short. I was trying, unsuccessfully to get my boarding pass for a flight on AirTran airlines, and they had to help me out at the desk for like, 20 minutes and when I called back the line was busy.

Thanks for the feedback from this site. I was actually surprised that the post suggesting ways to study was your favorite one. I assumed that the business idea posts would have been your favorite ones. But that’s just me, I was so obsessive about money at your age. I don’t know why.

But I’m glad the study suggestions were interesting to you because good grades are important. A lot of people will tell you that they’re not so important, but those people are wrong. Only one person in my entire childhood communicated to me that I should get straight A’s. Uncle Lowell. He got out Barbara’s report card, and showed it to me. He pointed out that all her grades were A’s, and told me that Barbara always got straight A’s. “There’s no reason why you shouldn’t get grades like this.” One time I spent a week at their house when Mom and Dad went on a cruise and I was kind of surprised that they expected me to sit down and do my homework. When I was frustrated with doing my Algebra, one of the older cousins sat down and helped me through it. That rarely if ever happened to me as I grew up. Dad used to say that grades were a big joke and you pretty much have to jump through hoops to get them. He was right about that. Unfortunately I concluded that it wasn’t important to jump through the hoops. If I would have jumped through the hoops back then I would have it a lot easier in college. It is important to get good grades.

Why is it important for a person like yourself to make the extra effort to get good grades?

The same reason it is important for you to get your Eagle Scout. People constantly evaluate each other based on different criteria. One way adults (who rule the world) evaluate teenagers is by their grades. If you have straight A’s, it says that you are bright enough, and hard working enough, with enough initiative to successfully work within a system (like the school system). If you have really good grades it doesn’t mean you’re the smartest person in the school. It means you show up, you do a good job, and you’re consistent. If you can do those things you’ll be successful at pretty much everything you set your mind to doing.

I have some friends who I’ve invited to participate in this blog. All of them are more qualified than I am to describe what it takes to be successful academically in school. Of course they’re all very busy people. But one of these days one of them will chime in with a different point of view.

Anyway, I’ll talk to you later.


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