Tuesday, February 19. 2013
This week's blog is now for Period 3 only, at least for now; each class will revisit this thread once they've read the book.
There’s a soundtrack to this week’s blog entry. (A tip of my cap to you if you can figure out why I used each song/sequenced them as I did.)
This is one of those posts where you’ll probably get even more out of it if you were around for the first semester; as long as you’ve learned the Star concepts and kept thinking about your Foundation Questions, you should be fine no matter what. (If you were a first-semester student, however, I’ll be curious to see whether you can tie this back to what you’ve already learned.)
I wrote the first version of this post about three years ago, back before the NFL Draft in question. I tried to keep the vast majority of my initial perspective unchanged; I want you to approach the topics at hand from that perspective, a position where you don’t know how this all turns out yet. (This is why I reference 2010 as the “present.”)
Obviously, many of the questions the post raises – and that I ask near the end – have been answered since then. I’ll provide an update after the prompts/requirements sections at the bottom that advances the narrative all the way up to the present day, but if you don’t already know what happens, I strongly encourage you to avoid reading my update at the very bottom – or anyone else’s responses – until you’ve written your first draft.
That said, I do want you to read the update before you submit your post; the “truth,” as it were, may change your original response (just as Senior Project research may crush a couple of your preconceptions about your career).
If you end up changing your mind after reading the update, don’t delete what you wrote. I love looking behind the scenes at how creative works are made – I’m one of those people who actually watches the Extras on his DVDs – and I’d like to see what you originally composed. Past students who needed to write additional post-update material divided their entries into boldly-titled sections: Original Work and Now That I Know.
Finally, please make sure you’ve read – and really considered – all of the prompts before composing your response. I knew that the first thread would be pretty home-obsessed, and while I really liked it, I felt like the second thread also trod the same ground. This isn’t uncommon; the first thread always tends to fixate on the main body’s main topic, or at least what seemed to be its main topic. But I come up with a bunch of prompts because I (somewhat selfishly) prefer as much variety within these threads as possible; please try to use material that’s distinctly your own!
Without any further ado…
The Lovesong of J. Alfred Prufrock, T.S. Eliot
S’io credesse che mia risposta fosse
A persona che mai tornasse al mondo,
Questa fiamma staria senza piu scosse.
Ma perciocche giammai di questo fondo
Non torno vivo alcun, s’i’odo il vero,
Senza tema d’infamia ti rispondo.
(If I believed that my reply were made
To one who could ever climb to the world again,
This flame would shake no more. But since no shade
Ever returned – if what I am told is true –
From this blind world into the living light,
Without fear of dishonor I answer you.)
Let us go then, you and I,
When the evening is spread out against the sky
Like a patient etherized upon a table;
Let us go, through certain half-deserted streets,
The muttering retreats
Of restless nights in one-night cheap hotels
And sawdust restaurants with oyster-shells:
Streets that follow like a tedious argument
Of insidious intent
To lead you to an overwhelming question…
Oh, do not ask, “What is it?”
Let us go and make our visit.
In the room the women come and go
Talking of Michelangelo.
The yellow fog that rubs its back upon the window-panes,
The yellow smoke that rubs its muzzle on the window-panes
Licked its tongue into the corners of the evening,
Lingered upon the pools that stand in drains,
Let fall upon its back the soot that falls from chimneys,
Slipped by the terrace, made a sudden leap,
And seeing that it was a soft October night,
Curled once about the house, and fell asleep.
And indeed there will be time
For the yellow smoke that slides along the street,
Rubbing its back upon the window panes;
There will be time, there will be time
To prepare a face to meet the faces that you meet;
There will be time to murder and create,
And time for all the works and days of hands
That lift and drop a question on your plate;
Time for you and time for me,
And time yet for a hundred indecisions,
And for a hundred visions and revisions,
Before the taking of a toast and tea.
In the room the women come and go
Talking of Michelangelo.
And indeed there will be time
To wonder, “Do I dare?” and, “Do I dare?”
Time to turn back and descend the stair,
With a bald spot in the middle of my hair–
(They will say: “How his hair is growing thin!”)
My morning coat, my collar mounting firmly to the chin,
My necktie rich and modest, but asserted by a simple pin–
(They will say: “But how his arms and legs are thin!”)
Do I dare
Disturb the universe?
In a minute there is time
For decisions and revisions which a minute will reverse.
For I have known them all already, known them all:
Have known the evenings, mornings, afternoons,
I have measured out my life with coffee spoons;
I know the voices dying with a dying fall
Beneath the music from a farther room.
So how should I presume?
And I have known the eyes already, known them all–
The eyes that fix you in a formulated phrase,
And when I am formulated, sprawling on a pin,
When I am pinned and wriggling on the wall,
Then how should I begin
To spit out all the butt-ends of my days and ways?
And how should I presume?
And I have known the arms already, known them all–
Arms that are braceleted and white and bare
(But in the lamplight, downed with light brown hair!)
Is it perfume from a dress
That makes me so digress?
Arms that lie along a table, or wrap about a shawl.
And should I then presume?
And how should I begin?
Shall I say, I have gone at dusk through narrow streets
And watched the smoke that rises from the pipes
Of lonely men in shirt-sleeves, leaning out of windows?...
I should have been a pair of ragged claws
Scuttling across the floors of silent seas.
And the afternoon, the evening, sleeps so peacefully!
Smoothed by long fingers,
Asleep…tired…or it malingers,
Stretched on the floor, here beside you and me.
Should I, after tea and cakes and ices,
Have the strength to force the moment to its crisis?
But though I have wept and fasted, wept and prayed,
Though I have seen my head (grown slightly bald) brought in upon a platter,
I am no prophet – and here’s no great matter;
I have seen the moment of my greatness flicker,
And I have seen the eternal Footman hold my coat, and snicker,
And in short, I was afraid.
And would it have been worth it, after all,
After the cups, the marmalade, the tea,
Among the porcelain, among some talk of you and me,
Would it have been worthwhile,
To have bitten off the matter with a smile,
To have squeezed the universe into a ball
To roll it toward some overwhelming question,
To say: “I am Lazarus, come from the dead,
Come back to tell you all, I shall tell you all”–
If one, settling a pillow by her head,
Should say: “That is not what I meant at all;
That is not it, at all.”
And would it have been worth it, after all,
Would it have been worthwhile,
After the sunsets and the dooryards and the sprinkled streets,
After the novels, after the teacups, after the skirts that trail along the floor–
And this, and so much more?–
It is impossible to say just what I mean!
But as if a magic lantern threw the nerves in patterns on a screen:
Would it have been worthwhile
If one, settling a pillow or throwing off a shawl,
And turning toward the window, should say:
“That is not it at all,
That is not what I meant, at all.”
No! I am not Prince Hamlet, nor was meant to be;
Am an attendant lord, one that will do
To swell a progress, start a scene or two,
Advise the prince; no doubt, an easy tool,
Deferential, glad to be of use,
Politic, cautious, and meticulous;
Full of high sentence, but a bit obtuse;
At times, indeed, almost ridiculous –
Almost, at times, the Fool.
I grow old…I grow old…
I shall wear the bottoms of my trousers rolled.
Shall I part my hair behind? Do I dare to eat a peach?
I shall wear white flannel trousers, and walk upon the beach.
I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each.
I do not think that they will sing to me.
I have seen them riding seaward on the waves
Combing the white hair of the waves blown back
When the wind blows the water white and black.
We have lingered in the chambers of the sea
By sea-girls wreathed with seaweed red and brown
Till human voices wake us, and we drown.
Every great leap forward in your life comes after you have made a clear decision of some kind.
Whether you live alone
Or you’re trying to find your way in this world,
You’d better make sure
That you don't crack your head on that pavement, man…
Doves, Black and White Town
Tell somebody they have to carry a jar of jelly across a marble floor, and they’ll do it dancing. Tell them they have to do the same thing with a $20 million Ming vase, and watch them sweat from their fingertips.
Charles P. Pierce
There’s something inside like a conscience that says,
“You’re painting floors while your pals are renaming the stars.
Get up, get up, go do what you started –
If you want to be a martyr, try harder!”
So you sell and you sell with your heart
So you can make a few bucks and lose a few friends.
This is the stuff that makes you,
It will be the same that breaks you…
Move on, get on with your life;
It’s pointless to play if you don’t get paid…
Braid, The New Nathan Detroits
There are two things to aim at in life: first, to get what you want; and after that, to enjoy it. Only the wisest of mankind achieve the second.
Logan Pearsall Smith
Let’s not settle for satisfaction!
We are women and men of action!
Let’s stop clapping, let’s start doing –
for the teens
and twenties yet unseen.
Braid, Killing a Camera
Early in the sixteenth century, Wàn Hǔ decided to take advantage of China’s advanced rocket and fireworks technology to launch himself into outer space. He supposedly had a chair built with forty-seven rockets attached. On the day of lift-off, Wàn, splendidly attired, climbed into his rocket chair and forty seven servants lit the fuses and then hastily ran for cover. There was a huge explosion. When the smoke cleared, Wàn and the chair were gone, and were said never to have been seen again.
Herbert S. Zim, Rockets and Jets
I get out of bed the same way every day,
Blurry-eyed and waiting for the alarm to sing,
Sing me into FM radiapathy –
and perfect for the working day…
The Velvet Teen, Radiapathy
The real loser of our times is the one who is expected to win.
I never loved nobody fully;
Always one foot on the ground.
And by protecting my heart truly,
I got lost
in the sounds:
I hear in my mind
All of these voices,
I hear in my mind
All of these words;
I hear in my mind
All of this music,
And it breaks my heart,
And it breaks my heart…
Regina Spektor, Fidelity
Whatever course you decide upon, there is always someone to tell you that you are wrong.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Someday I'm gonna find it,
Wish I knew what I was looking for
Inside the disarray…
I woke up this morning,
Don't know where I'm going,
But it's all right –
I wouldn't have it any other way.
A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and goes to bed at night and in between does what he wants to do.
There is no enough.
I first came up with the idea for this blog after reading Wright Thompson’s ESPN.com piece about a young football player named Myron Rolle. (The material that follows in italics is taken from that piece.)
For those of you who don’t follow football and/or have no idea who I’m talking about, you have to understand something about Rolle: calling him a football player is like calling you a student. That’s one of the hats you wear, sure…but it’s probably not the one you use to define yourself. A more accurate label for Rolle, especially for our purposes, is “Renaissance Man.”
Whatever he does, he does it well and, to the immense frustration of others, with ease and grace. He’s an All-American safety. He can play saxophone and sing. He was the lead in his high school’s production of Fiddler on the Roof. He graduated from Florida State as an exercise science major in less than three years with a 3.75 GPA. He shadows doctors, dreaming of medical school. He says “please” and “thank you.” He researches stem cells. He starts anti-obesity programs that the U.S. Department of the Interior adopts, aimed at helping Native American children make smart choices about fitness and health. He raises money for hospitals. Myron Rolle, it can safely be assumed, not only eats vegetables, he likes them. Life hangs comfortably from his shoulders like a fine suit.
Understand this: Myron Rolle graduated from FSU in less than three years so he could try to become a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford. This is not someone who messes around. This is certainly not a man accustomed to failure.
In so many ways, Myron Rolle is the opposite of Paul Baumer. One is accomplished, acclaimed, individual; the other is anonymous, a faceless soldier fighting endless skirmishes that seem to accomplish little beyond the death and dismemberment of his friends. One is healthy, vigorous, ambitious, and intelligent; the other is withdrawn, traumatized, detached, and driven only by the bizarre routines of his battlefields. For one, the possibilities are seemingly endless; for the other, the possibilities seem hopelessly empty.
And yet, one can argue that Myron Rolle is just as beholden to the wishes of others as Paul is to the dictates of the other officers…perhaps, in his own way, even more so.
Two unfamiliar envelopes poke out of [Rolle’s mailbox] slot.
The first one is from Ohio. He tears into the envelope and finds a note: I read about you in The New York Times and I thought you might be interested in this article from The New Yorker.
It’s a recent piece by Malcolm Gladwell, and it offers and backs up the theory that professional football is a lot like dogfighting and is, ultimately, a sport that cannot be played without doing serious damage to the brain. This is, obviously, a conundrum for Rolle: He wants to be a pro football player and a neurosurgeon. Don’t successful careers in each of these preclude the other?
Of all the obstacles facing Rolle, including the luck and work and genetic blessings required to be one of the 32 chosen to be a Rhodes scholar and one of the 32 chosen to be a first-round pick [in the NFL Draft], perhaps none is greater than this: People in each world don’t believe anyone could possibly be passionate about the other. He’s always asked: Which do you like more? Draft gurus question his commitment. His defensive coordinator at Florida State, Mickey Andrews, told Rolle that he was spending too much time on school and not enough time on football. Even Oxford University assigned him to St. Edmund Hall, known here as the jock college.
The other letter is from a London teacher.
I heard you this morning on Radio 4. Never have I heard a young man so articulate, forward thinking and inspirational. All I could think about listening to you was: I have to get him to speak at my school. I’m a teacher in London at an inner-city school where I do lots of work around raising Black achievement. To hear you speak about the importance of education and hearing about your life decisions – putting off the NFL for Oxford, wanting to be a neurosurgeon, money not being your main goal in life – it would all mean so much to the kids at my school.
Rolle considers his mail. Two letters, two totally different problems; if other people’s myopia is an obstacle, then the exact opposite is, too. He is trying to stay on course in a vast sea of possibilities, and everywhere he goes, he is confronted by people lining up to tell him what he means and what he could be and, most confining of all, what he should be.
He is a vessel for other people's dreams.
Here are the three things to know about Rolle as he reads that second letter:
1. The Monday after he won the Rhodes scholarship, his cell phone rang. Jesse Jackson. At first, Rolle thought it was a joke. But no, it was actually Jesse Jackson, and he wanted to tell Rolle this: “If Dr. King were alive today, he’d be proud of you.”
2. While Rolle was in D.C. for the inauguration, Princeton professor and African-American leader Cornel West spotted him on the street and bowed. Literally bowed down and said this: “You are the future of black America.”
Everywhere he's been, for as long as he can remember, he’s been singled out for future greatness, by strangers and family alike. When he was in high school, riding on the New Jersey Turnpike with his dad, he asked one day, “What would it be like to be normal?” He’s thought about that a lot.
And this, too: What is enough for those who see so much in him? He opens his e-mail and there's a recruiting pitch from the Harvard Business School. His dad wants him to make a perfect score on the Wonderlic exam given at the NFL combine. Jesse Jackson wants him to be a leader for an entire generation. Florida State told him on his recruiting visit that he could be a Rhodes scholar…and now he is. Mickey Andrews wants him to react, and his professors want him to think. He deals, on a daily basis, with the crushing weight of having this much potential. He worries about losing himself. He never stops thinking about what other people want for him, and how it's easy to become a mosaic of their expectations instead of staying true to his own.
“The danger is that you lose a sense of identity,” he says, “you lose a sense of who you are. If you continue to try to navigate through constructs that are set up by other people, by other people’s thoughts of who you are and who you should be, you will never be personally at peace.”
So he understands he shouldn’t spend his life pleasing other people. But what does he want?
This brings us to…
3. A year ago, Rolle spoke at the College of the Bahamas. His family comes from the nation, and he alone among his five brothers was born in the United States (his mom traveled to Houston so he could be an American citizen). He was chosen before birth.
One of his many dreams is to open a medical clinic in his hometown of Exuma, and so, after the speech, the Bahamian politicians crowded around him. Be the prodigal son, they told him. Come back and be president one day. Be prime minister. When he returned to Tallahassee, he was online one night in his room and saw a photo tagged on Facebook of himself and the current president of the Bahamas. A lot of things ran through his head: People want me to come back and save their country? I don't know if that’s in my plan. I never thought of politics. This isn’t me.
Sitting there in the dark, he finally began to understand: There is no enough.
All he can do is stay focused on his dreams: NFL, medical school, then a life as a groundbreaking neurosurgeon and head of a foundation that brings medical care to those without.
You know, simple stuff.
We’re going to discuss The Lovesong of J. Alfred Prufrock during class this week. It’s the poem that led off this blog; you probably read it last year during American Lit. It’s critical to our understanding of All Quiet on the Western Front; in some ways, it’s critical to our understanding of Myron Rolle.
But when I first read about Rolle, a different figure from the junior-year poetry unit popped into my head:
I envy Myron Rolle’s abilities.
I envy the possibilities those abilities can reveal.
But I don’t envy Myron Rolle.
He isn’t allowed to fail.
And he almost certainly will.
Will we remember Myron Rolle?
I can tell you this: Rolle wants to be a first-round pick in the 2010 NFL Draft this April. He wants it desperately.
But I don’t think he’ll make it.
For one thing, he skipped his senior season to go to Oxford. Plenty of players don’t pan out even after four continuous seasons of collegiate work. The team drafting him is gambling a) that his physical skills haven’t degenerated away from the playing field; b) that he can shake off the rust at the same time that he’s making the jump to the professional level (which, as I’ve indicated to some of you, is far more difficult than one might anticipate); and c) that he can still make that jump to the pros after spending so much time away from live competition. Not only is that a big gamble, but the men making those gambles also have to take their own employment situation into consideration. (If you miss on too many draft picks, you’re wasting millions of the owner’s dollars, and you’re out the door.)
Moreover, Rolle may be well-regarded – he was once the top-ranked high school recruit in the nation – but he doesn’t have a lot of statistical flash. He’s a clinical player; he diagnoses instead of reacts. This means he doesn’t get burned by big plays, but it also means he puts himself in position to make plays more rarely. He intercepted one pass in three combined seasons at Florida State. Dozens of young men vying for those limited draft spots intercepted more passes last season alone – at the same time, as it so happens, that Rolle was studying abroad.
Yet regardless of his physical skills or statistical background, there’s a simpler truth at work here. The National Football League tends to shy away from individuals it feels cannot devote themselves utterly to its sport. In this sense, it’s no different from deciding whether to let a singer who may have a questionable attitude about touring for months on end join your band. Sure, the guy’s talented. But do you really want to put your trust in someone who might change his mind, who might not dedicate himself to your craft the way you dedicate yourself to it?
And might Myron Rolle, if asked to lay down a hit in a situation that places his head (and therefore brain) at risk, shy away from contact rather than sacrifice himself?
These are the questions we ask of the excellent. But the questions are real. They don’t mean he won’t get drafted; they probably mean he won’t get drafted very early. Since you pay your picks largely according to a slotting system dictated by their draft position, you’re taking less of a financial risk by picking Rolle late, particularly if he suddenly proves contact-averse or simply retires early in order to pursue neurosurgery. In short, the general manager who drafts him must calculate whether an investment in Rolle will pay off, and at what point in the draft that investment becomes a wise one.
Thus Rolle must place his fate in the hands of other men, none of whom can probably match up with him on an intellectual or athletic basis. These men get to make the decisions for him because that’s the way the system works.
Collegiate athletes don’t get to choose the company they join when they enter the professional ranks, so other men determine where they will play (and, therefore, when they will play), and they (along with an agent) will negotiate how well they are paid. Myron Rolle will probably be underpaid relative to his skill due to the aforementioned slotting system; teams only budget a certain number of dollars to spend on all of their draft picks combined, and you spend less money on lower picks.
And if Myron Rolle gets hurt during his first contract, NFL contracts aren’t guaranteed. Lower-round picks don’t usually enjoy long careers even when they’re healthy because they’re so interchangeable; the team invests little in you, so you’re replaceable, particularly if you’re injured.
Imagine, if you will, Myron Rolle suffering an injury to his head, or to his hands. His NFL career ends. His career in neuroscience and neurosurgery never begins.
What does he do then?
Are there still mountains left to conquer?
And will they matter as much as the ones he tried to climb with everyone clamoring for him to succeed their way?
Myron Rolle is caught in a machine. It’s not as sinister as the mechanical, dehumanizing systems of warfare that Paul comes to recognize and hate, but it’s a machine all the same.
Isn’t there something screwed up about the idea that a man can have too many passions for his own good?
Isn’t there something screwed up when we punish a man we expect to be everything to everyone for meeting our expectations?
It is...difficult to be everything to everyone. As a younger man, I tried to be. But life has simply taught me that I’m not up to the task. I found out the hard way that I can’t meet every individual’s expectations.
Yet in some ways, I still try. By that, I mean I try to make sure I can meet the expectations of the people who matter to me (including my own).
I have to hope I can consistently figure out which people to value, and which expectations I actually want to meet.
And I hope Myron Rolle figures out what he wants before he loses everything.
+ In the words of Rolle’s lecturer, “What if you're successful in ways you didn't intend to be successful?” Would your new successes matter as much as the dreams you never realized or the goals you never met? How important do you think it is to meet your goals?
+ One of the most challenging aspects of Rolle’s reality is listed at the beginning of this post: There is no enough. He’s lived a life of constant challenge. He’s never known peace. He’s never known real satisfaction because he’s never had time to enjoy it, to get complacent with success. Is this a blessing, or a curse?
+ If you’re a general manager of a football team – with your continued employment largely contingent on the performance of the team you assembled – do you draft Myron Rolle?
+ Paul Baumer, of course, lives on the other end of the spectrum. Whereas Rolle seems to disturb the universe simply by passing through it, almost without even wishing to, Paul merely hopes to survive long enough to stop fighting. Do you think someone who's seen what Paul's seen could ever be happy in the same manner as before they went off to war? Do you think Rolle will ever be able to settle for something that could make him happy without leaving him feeling unfulfilled?
+ What should we do with a person like Myron Rolle? Do they have the right to try whatever they want? Should we encourage them to pick a fate and ignore the rest? If you're raising Myron, do you allow him to bounce around until he finds his passion (at the risk of losing everything), or make him focus on one area (at the risk of missing out on a more fulfilling life)? Should we, in essence, save him from himself? Would you treat Rolle the way you’d prefer to be raised?
+ What right do we have as a society to make demands of Myron Rolle? Is he selfish for not maximizing his exceptional gifts? Should we have an obligation to contribute meaningfully to the world around us if we have the ability to do so? What right do we have as a society to make demands of Paul Baumer? Should he be allowed to think and act independently when he's fighting? Should he be allowed to have discretion with regards to how he behaves, whether he kills, etc.? How much is too much to ask of another?
+ If you’re Paul, is the war worth resisting? If you’re Rolle, is the NFL worth the risk?
+ What do you think will become of Rolle? If you’re in his position, facing this particular branching point in your life…would you want to see the future first?
+ If you do look at the update: what do you think of Rolle’s decisions now that you’ve seen how they’ve unfolded, and how does the actual outcome affect your “pre-evaluation” (if at all) of that choice?
Please try to post insightful, specific, and polished pieces. Your post should be at least three seven-sentence paragraphs long, and punctuation, grammar, and mechanics all count towards your grade. Compose your replies carefully, and always remember to build your credibility - use proof, not hypothetical statements. Write the why for every what!
As always, you are not required to respond to every question.
For this post, written feedback for at least two of your peers is required! Congratulate them, praise them, ask them questions...reach out! There’s no comment limit for this thread, so if you feel like talking to your peers, follow your instincts! Check your work to see if someone left feedback for you, and start conversations with your readers – and classmates!
As you develop as writers, your pieces should demonstrate both knowledge of writing as a craft and an awareness of how to profoundly express yourself. Practice writing not simply as students, but as creators; experiment with writing, in other words, as writers do.
Your main post is due to both the blog and Turnitin.com by 11:59pm on Thursday, April 18th, as are your feedback/replies/comments to your peers.
Please remember to nominate two of your peers for their excellent work.
As always, write well, think well…and good luck.
UPDATE: Myron Rolle was not, in fact, drafted in the first round. He was chosen in the sixth round, on the last day of the draft, by the Tennessee Titans. They used the 207th pick to select him.
Tom Brady aside, almost no one from the sixth round of a draft ends up with a long and successful NFL career. For now, Rolle seems to be no exception. He was released at the end of his first preseason, and signed thereafter with something called the Titans’ practice squad.
That group sounds like it would provide great opportunities for someone to improve, but in actuality, the eight-player group’s main function is to simulate the behavior of each week’s opposing team. You don’t really get to practice your own game; for example, a QB on the 49ers’ practice squad spent the season pretending to be a tight end on offense and a cornerback on defense. You don’t get a real uniform. You don’t get to play. You don’t attend the games. If you stay on it for all seventeen weeks, you can make up to $85,000 for that year. You do not receive health insurance. Can you imagine what a football player's insurance premiums must cost if he’s paying out of pocket, especially if previous playing damage lingers?
Rolle was never listed anywhere on the Tennessee Titans’ official depth chart. After a year spent on the practice squad and a second preseason with the team, the Titans released him again in September of 2011, barely into the second year of a four-year contract. They didn't think enough of his future to re-sign him to the practice squad. No one else came calling.
But he spent his time well. He joined a college’s Board of Trustees. He started a program with a fellow Rhodes Scholar that aimed to make fellowship opportunities more widely available to college students who’d normally pass on the chance to pursue them.
And he had not yet suffered an injury to his hands or head.
The Pittsburgh Steelers signed Rolle to a reserve/future contract after the 2011 season ended.
It wasn’t a guaranteed contract; he was one of eighty-plus players trying to make a fifty-three man roster – something he couldn’t do on a less-talented team as a draft pick two years earlier.
As a draft pick, you almost automatically make the roster during your first year; the general manager looks kind of foolish if one of his picks flops that badly. You usually make it as a second-year player, although that's more rare for fifth-, sixth-, and seventh-rounders.
As a free agent? Not even a free agent teams fight over, but a reserve/futures guy? Rolle was disposable.
He needed to outwork, outhustle, and outperform at least thirty other men who are just as hungry, talented, and driven. He wasn’t going to be able to protect his body if he was going to win a spot. He’d have to fight in practices and exhibition games that mean nothing in the record books, although the toll they can take on one’s body are all too real.
Myron Rolle faced a future where he could still end up breaking himself in a moment that ultimately counted for nothing.
He tried anyway.
The Steelers released Rolle days before the 2012 season began. He hasn’t been signed since.
On the Google snippet beneath his official website, Rolle still bills himself as a “future NFL star.”
Three years after Wright Thompson wrote his article, his subject – the onetime top high school football prospect in the nation – has yet to suit up for an official NFL game.
Unless he defies the odds yet again, he never will.
Display comments as (Linear | Threaded)
Were I to be successful in something that I did not intend to be good at, my goals would still be the same. Personally, my motives are unique to my desire for success.
I would much rather fail at something I love than succeed and pursue what I quickly grow tired of.
I know this because it’s already happening.
Recently, I discovered that I have an aptitude for a sport that used to disgust me.
You swing an overpriced club, hit an tiny $5 white ball, and then go look for it...
For something so simple, it takes up so much space than it should; and most of it is never even used. Acres of perfectly good land become water-hungry, unused, trimmed grass in a dry environment.
What an awful idea.
But seeing that little ball speed through the air after a rare perfect hit, brings me a confusing joy.
"It should not be this fun. All I did was hit it straight. Albeit it was really hard, but I would hardly call this an accomplishment."
Since day one, I have progressed much faster than I intended or expected to. My uncle, who introduced me to the sport, thinks that if I get a coach and play consistently, I might make it to the professional level. I've been playing for less than a year but their comments on how well I’m doing encourage me.
But I never aspired to be a professional athlete. Actually I hate how people turn a game into a life of money and business.
Golf is fun, sure. But I will not make it a priority in my life and turn this sport into a personal source of stress, income, worry, and unwanted public attention. I have never wanted to do anything like that.
Even if I were the best athlete in the world, I would not seek success for the sake of success and also at the cost of my dreams. That would just suck!
I loved how you used yourself as an example. I can tell that you play the sport as a hobby but you could not see it being your life. Many athletes see a sport they are great at, even though they don't like it, and will make it their life.
Great Blog. Fun to read!
I agree with you on how we should pursue the things we are passionate about even if it's not your greatest strength. If you put your heart into it, then you can accomplish great things.
I think it is cool how you found success in something that you didn’t expect, but I also applaud you for not losing sight of your actual dreams and chase something that is uncertain and comes with complications. Good post!
I can see your love in sports. Me too. But sometimes our favorite sport is not what we are best at.
I really enjoyed reading this post. I though your points were very interesting and made a lot of sense. I can understand the passion that you have for this sport and in a way I feel like I can kind of relate. Since I love performing I get what you mean by just doing it for the love of it and not just to get paid. Very well written piece. Good job!
I'm glad you can relate, I was wondering if anyone else was going through something similar.
I really enjoyed reading your post. It was the first one so it had my eyes glued from the beginning to the end. The fact that you made it relatable with the golf reference was awesome. Great post.
We were all standing there in the cold, cold gym. It was winter break and half of us had our minds on the homework we had to get done and the other half on what plans we had to meet up with friends. Our instructor was telling people, one by one, where to go, when to go, and when to get there. Eventually my mind snapped back to rehearsal when it was my turn to learn my next drill set. I looked around and saw everyone in little pods of five except me. It was then that I realized that I was actually good at this. I had a solo.
I’m actually good at this whole Color Guard thing.
I never intended to be successful in this activity. I just joined on a whim because my friends said it would be fun. I joined because I didn’t have anything else to do and I wanted to spend time with my friends. I’m not saying it’s a waste to be successful in something you never intended to do well in, because there are always other people who wish they were in your position even though you don’t want to be. That means that whatever you did right has value.
What I had originally planned on fulfilling my goals in were about the chemistry field. I did pretty well in chemistry and I thought about taking AP Chem the following year but didn’t because I did not think I would be able to devote enough time to it in my already busy schedule. However, that did not mean I gave up on my goals in chemistry, it just meant that it would take a bit longer to pursue them.
My new success matters as much as the unrealized ones. Even though I don’t intend to do anything with being good in Color Guard doesn’t mean everything I did was a waste. I obtained skills that are good for many other things and skills that I never thought I needed. As a fall back, I can always become a Color Guard instructor as a side job for extra cash. That’s not what I want to do, but I noticed you are always better off than some else and that there is always someone who believes you are successful in what they wish they were successful in.
I still plan on doing something with chemistry later in my life. I like the subject, I find it interesting, and there are many job opportunities with knowledge in chemistry. Meeting this goal is important to me. Meeting your goals should be important for everyone. Having a goal keeps you driven and motivated. Without it, you will turn out to be like Paul Bäumer, emotionless and indifferent. I may not have gotten very far in this journey, but it isn’t too late to keep going.
“Don’t stop believin’
Hold on to the feelin’”
I liked how you use the lyrics from Journey's Don't Stop Believing. I really ties into what you were talking about. I have known you for 6 years and I never knew you wanted to do something with chemistry. That is really cool.
I doubt Myron Rolle will be able to succeed as a linebacker in the NFL and be a neurosurgeon. The two professions do not complement each other in a way that makes succeeding at both of them possible. Rolle can fully dedicate his time to becoming a neurosurgeon and likely be successful, but he would never play in the NFL. With the exception of Bo Jackson, being a professional athlete requires total dedication to the sport. The same is required of a neurosurgeon. (Would you want someone to operate on your brain if they were not fully dedicated or prepared?) I predict that Rolle will either be a professional football player or become a neurosurgeon. Not both.
I find myself in a similar situation, though less dramatic. (I will never be a NFL star or a neurosurgeon.) My high school career is quickly coming to a close, and I still find myself clueless as to what type of work I want to get into. (Hopefully the senior project enlightens me.)
Ever since I could put ideas into words, I’ve wanted to be a professional baseball player. As I have grown I have been disillusioned; it is not at all likely I will ever play professionally. With this in mind I find myself asking this question: Why do I continue to peruse my dream knowing that it is likely for nothing? Maybe I should stop wasting my time chasing a dream and figure out what I am really going to do in my life. This is logic speaking, but it’s not that simple.
I love baseball; I love to play it, watch it, daydream about it, and argue about it. So to stop playing is immoral at my core, although in the back of my mind I know everything that I have mentioned above.
Like Rolle, I must choose. But unlike Rolle, who can give up something he loves to do something he loves, I must give up what I love to find something I love, or chase what I love and find myself lost.
If knew for a fact that chasing my goal would payoff, obviously I would continue to do so. Similarly, if I knew that attempting to play baseball would not payoff, the decision to hang up my spikes might be easier.
Myron Rolle must make a choice. I must make choice.
I like how you were able to relate to the topic at hand. It can be really hard to let something go and I'm glad that you have the courage to even consider it. Great blog!
I really loved you're blog. You took a hard subject and were able to relate it to your own life so effortlessly. It really made it enjoyable to read. I think you captured the struggles of decision in a very clear manner and were able to show how in life everything is about a choice. Well done!
Rarely does one come across a person that has too much talent. It’s like finding a needle in a haystack. And if we ever come across these people, what do we do with them? I think as a society we have this misconception that the smarter you are the easier your life will be. But as a society we hold them up to a higher standard. If you are Rolle and you fail, you don’t just fail at being at what you could have been. You fail at measuring up to our societal ideas of what you should have been.
So how does one handle an extremely talented person like Rolle? Interestingly enough I had the intriguing experience of knowing a person similar to Rolle. It was not only been fascinating, but educational for me to see how this person (who I’ll call Tom) turned out.
From a young age Tom’s parents were always pushing him. Pushing him to be the fastest member on his sports team. Pushing him to get all of his boy scout badges. Pushing him to play an instrument. Pushing him to always be the smartest in class. Everyone knew he was exceptional. He was always being told by people how smart he was and how far he would go in life.
But Tom always seemed subdued. There was never any passion in the activities that his parents made him be involved in.
His parent’s chose his path for him. Did they ever once stop to ask him if he enjoyed the rigorous pace of his life? Of course not- they never gave him the chance to apply his intelligence in areas that he actually liked. As a result, in later years (high school and beyond) he fell apart. He quit every activity his parents ever made him join and he lost out on every opportunity he was given. I watched him quit boy scouts right in the middle of his eagle project, quit playing his instrument, and give up a full ride to a prestigious college in California.
Why do we try to run other people’s lives? What wrong with letting smart people struggle with finding their purpose in life- just like everyone else? The only difference is they have the problem of narrowing down what one thing they want to spend the rest of their life doing, while the rest of us toil trying to find at least one thing we are moderately good at. Everyone should have the choice to choose what they want to do. If we choose for them, we actually stunt them from pursuing something they are passionate about. Rolle shouldn’t have fifty billion people telling how to live his life or what to with it.
I wouldn’t someone telling me what to do with the rest of my life. Would you?
I agree completely. No matter how good someone is at a particular sport or activity, if that person does not enjoy it, then they should not continue the activity. Although parents do have a huge impact on our lives and we will on our children, we should never let them control our lives.
What you say is very bold and critical of what a lot of parents are doing...I like that. You're absolutely correct. Parents can only go so far as to guide us, but there has, is, and always will be a limit.
I really liked the way you write and rephrase your words. And I totally agree that if someone does not have a passion for something no matter how good he was, he will not like doing it.
I like how you used Tom’s story as an example. That was great! I agree with you that when people are not passionate about what they are doing then there is no point of doing it because their dreams and goals will not be reached.
I could really relate to Tom from your post. I feel like I know someone like him. I completely agree with your opinion about "Everyone should have the choice to choose what they want to do". Thank you so much for you post.
Wow I have to say I really enjoyed reading this. And you totally have a point here and I completely agree. Sad thing is, a lot of parents do this to their kids, forcing them into things they don't want to do, but they have to realize that even though they're trying to do what they think is best for their child, it's not going to necessarily give their child happiness. Great post! Keep up the good work!
I really loved your post because I felt like I could really relate to it. I understand what is feels like having parents that push you into something just because you're good at it. It was very eye opening, and a very moving post. I really enjoyed reading it.
I totally agree with what you wrote, I would not let anybody else to tell me what I should do. We should listen to different opinion, but at the end of the day, we need to listen to our own heart.
Great blog. love it!
i like how you mentioned me in your post haha
i miss those days, good times! and i totally agree with you because we are working in the same restaurant. I totally understand how you feel about the time management, great post!
I loved the example you used. And I'm sure what Tom has gone through has happened to a lot of other people. Your post was overall enjoyable to read.
Your blog is absolutely amazing. I know what you mean, society shouldn't define who we are, but in a it does. We follow the order of society, because everyone else does. Society runs the lives of you, me, and everyone else.
I really don't like it when people tell me what I'm supposed to do with my life, and I can only imagine what your friend felt like. Someone with potential, or without should be able to decide for themselves what they want. We should all have our own say in what we define our lives to be, not society.
Thanks for the great read, keep up the great writing!
Hey Elizabeth, I can relate to your story so much in my friends who are pushed to become what they want to them to be. We should all live our own lives and definitely Myron Rolle too. Enjoyed reading your post, good job.
I really enjoyed reading your post. I like that you addressed and asked why we try to run others' lives, because it sounds so simple, yet sometimes we do it without even knowing it. You really thought about everything you wrote and I enjoy that about your piece. Overall, great job!! Keep up the good work girl! (:
Hi, great post. I really agree with your point that no one should have the right to tell others how to live their life. i have seen this happen so mny times and i feel horrible about the idea that people let others get in their way of their own dreams and goals. Great post!
Hi Elizabeth, your blog post is exceptional. The conversational tone you gave in your post really helped connect me as a reader. I can see how society treats the more knowledgeable kids in the game of life. It is rather unfair the amount of expectations that these kids receive and later blow out because of it. Nice subtle use of bold words to draw out an emotional response.
People should have the right to choose what they want to do with their life. Encouraging people to make decisions that would benefit you instead of them is just selfish. As a child, one dreams of their future and spends their childhood preparing for their life.
Who is able to tell a person what to do with their life?
What qualifies someone to be able to direct someone’s life?
No one. People should have the right to do what makes them happy. In Rolles case, he decided to do that. People were telling him what he should do and telling him that if he tried out for football, he would be wasting his talent. People wanted to live their dreams through his life.
Parents do this all the time. Many parents try to get their sons and daughters to try to do things that they were not able to. I strongly disagree with this. It is ok to tell a child to experiment with sports, music, and technology but to force them to do something that they do not like. No one can be forced to genuinely like something and be able to call it their passion. As a child of two loving parents, I know that they want the best for me and want me to succeed but isn’t doing what I love and being happy succeeding? Or is doing something that I do not like, but having people think that I am making the most of my abilities succeeding?
I would rather live my life doing what I love being not great at it, than be great at doing something I do not love. This, in my opinion, is how someone should measure their success. Not about how much money they make, but how happy they are with what their life has become.
I really liked your last paragraph. I agree with your definition of success. It’s hard to choose between things, but ultimately, choosing something that you love is always best! The job wouldn’t be as tedious and it just makes life better.
I know people who have gone into fields of work just because of the salary, and they aren’t exactly the happiest people. But it’s great when you see someone love their job and the life that they created for themselves!
Also, the paragraph where you talk about parents is very insightful. I also have two loving parents and I acknowledge what they are doing for me is for my own good, but I kind of question if the things I am doing are really things that I want to continue with.
I agree with your opinions that each person should not obey to other people.
I completely agree with you. I liked how you defined "success."
I hope that you do what you enjoy and become "successful"
This is a great post. I really agree with your opinion that people should have the right and freedom to choose their fate and the directions of their lives as you said in the post. Good job!
I have the complete same standpoint. People shouldn't be told what to do with their lives. We should just pursue what we love to do and do it. We only have once chance in life.
I agree with your idea that people should be able to live their own lives and not following demands of others. Thank you for your great post!
I really enjoyed reading this piece of work from you. I completely agree with what you wrote about doing something that you love than doing something that may make you more successful or earn more money that you hate doing. Thank you for sharing with us!
Your view point is the same as mine. I also want to do something that I enjoy and love instead of being miserable everyday.
Potential: a three syllable word that is as harmless as a three syllable word can be, could be just the exact opposite - putting an unbearable amount of burden on your shoulders.
Having potential gives you the power to do virtually anything you set your mind to, and you should be proud - but with greatness, there are always responsibilities, and of course, consequences. Being fortunate enough to have the exceptional ability to surpass the norm - immense pressure and expectations are always lingering around. People may even take advantage of you. So, why would anyone want that sort of pressure? What is so great about it?
Expectations make people feel good. It is great knowing that someone has so much faith in you, but personally, expectations were always the things that haunted me. Sure, having expectations drives you to succeed, drives you to be your very best - drives you to meet those expectations. But what if you do not meet those expectations? What becomes of you? Would abandoning expectations free you... or trap you? Can you still become someone great? I always hated myself whenever I failed.
Time after time, I have heard of the expression: “No expectations, no disappointments.” But what if having no expectations meant having nothing to live for in life? Don’t we all have expectations for our own lives in addition to other people’s expectations? Don’t we all want to succeed and strive for our goals even if the end result may not be what we wanted? If there is nothing pushing us to go forward, what’s left?
People like Myron Rolle are the most lucky, yet most unfortunate as well. It is amazing when you can have the best of both worlds, but sometimes, sacrifices must be made. Having one thing, may wreck your chance of having the other. It is difficult to mold your life into a life that satisfies the people who care about you, but you cannot forget that it is your life - the only person you have to satisfy at the end of the day is yourself, and society cannot take that away from you. Things don’t always turn out the way we want them to and we can’t please everyone - though we wish we could. Conquer one wish at a time, conquer one dream at a time.
Dreams are meant to be chased, so chase the dreams that you seem fit - even if you cause massive amounts of expectations for yourself. But in the end, is having too many and too high of expectations a bad thing? Or is having no expectations and too low of expectations a bad thing? I am conflicted. To me, there will never be a right answer.
As William Shakespeare said, “Expectation is the root of all heartache.”
I agree with your statements. I enjoyed ready your post because I have the same philosophy that you have on potential. Potential is an amazing thing a person can have because it means you could be really good at something. However, you can't be good at everything like everyone wants you to be.
Don't worry I am just as conflicted as you are about which dreams to chase! I really enjoyed your blog and I share all of the ideas that you wrote about.
It’s true! It’s really hard to choose sometimes... But thank you for reading!
Keep chasing your dreams. I believe that you will be very successful down the road! you are a great writer and person!!!
Thanks Nick! That really means a lot to me. I believe that you’ll achieve everything that you aspire to do as well!
Hi Cindy, I love the way you described potential. I never thought that the word potential “gives you the power to do virtually anything you set your mind to.” I agree that even if we can’t satisfy everyone, we should chase one dream at a time. Awesome blog!
Thanks so much for reading and for all the input!
Hi Cindy!! I enjoyed reading your post! Reading your post made me realize a few things myself about expectations and potential. I especially like your ending about chasing dreams and how it is all a mystery to if there is too much or too little expectation. Nice post!
Hello Cindy, your blog post was exceptional. You showed two viewpoints on how expectations can be beneficial as well as harmful. Those viewpoints were wrote out very nicely, one argument as good as the other. Also nice beginning, using expectation as a ladder to your actual post. Nice job.
Passion and Joy
My dad said, “Harrison, you should do something you want to do,” and I believe in him. I totally agree that people need to do something that they want to do. We have right to choose whatever we want. I know that we should not be chased by time, money, and pressure, but look for what we are capable of and what we desire for. I am not saying we should be limited to one area or bounce around until we find our passion. If we are capable of doing more than one then i think it’s not a problem to go back and forth.
Often time we tend to look for something that can give us worldly stuff, whether it is good or bad, we just follow what the world say, like a robot. If something provides money, we chase them. If something provides honor, we chase them. We just chase after money, honor, and power, and those worldly factors define us. While people are chasing after them, we don’t even know we are enjoying our limited time, we don’t know whether we are living our life to the full. We just waste ourselves for nothing no happiness no joy... no nothing. I believe that we have right to try whatever that lie in our life, if there is passion and joy. However, these challenge we face doesn’t have passion then it is useless. It is just waste of our golden time. I personally had a lot of opportunities to try a lot of things. Immigrating to U.S and learning new cultures and new languages. Traveling around the world meeting people and experiencing bigger places. All these experiences and challenges that I have gone through are useless, if there weren’t passion. Also these thing can’t happen if there weren’t my eager heart. I don’t think money and honor can fulfill humankind’s heart. Honestly that is why so many people in the world commit suicide. Whether we fail or not, it is always great to give yourself a chance to challenge.
If I was Myron Rolle, I would try everything I can, to seek for my passion. Even as a parent of Myron Rolle, I will ask my son to challenge himself with different stuffs, if he has passion to do. We do not have infinite time, our time is limited. We better look for passion and joy if we didn’t find it, keep look for it. Just keep move on until you find one.
I like that you stand for passion as a justification for pursuing your dreams. I believe that passion does account for a majority of the reason you achieve things and the reason why you bother with trying towards something at all. Though, I do not think it's a complete waste of time to chase after something without passion, it certainly does make it a lot less meaningful.
I really liked it when you said, “If something provides money, we chase them. If something provides honor, we chase them. We just chase after money, honor, and power, and those worldly factors define us.” I totally agree that people are just chasing certain things in life, and they really do define us. However, the things that people are chasing may not even be worth it. We really should enjoy our limited time.
I also really liked it when you said that we should give ourselves “a chance to challenge.” Your passion for the things that you do should be applauded! Great job on your post, Harrison!
And by the way, your dad is totally a smart man! I believe in what he told you, as well.
Hi Ye Chan, I completely agree with you, we could seek and pursue something we are passionate about. Like you said our time is limited, and do not have infinite time to find our passion, but we push on until we do. Great blog!
Hey Harrison, I completely agree that we should all pursue our passiosn including Myron Rolle. It is coming to the time where we must all decide what we want to do in our lives and I hope that everyone chooses whatever interests them.
As distorted and flawed in character as I am, I actually have friends who would come to me for advice from times to times. Most times, I could never actually offer them any real advice. What I usually do is list all the choices lies before them and summarize the consequence and benefit that may follow each path. It is the least and most I can do. What gives me the right to tell others what to do with their lives?
Greatest and worst thing about life, no one can tell you what to do except you.
If I was raising Myron, I would treat him exactly how I would like to be treated.
I would not demand him pursue a career that does not truly fulfills him.
Our life is full of cross-sections. Each turn leads to a different life. Myron is facing perhaps the most important cross section in his life. We would always be looking back at the choices we make and wonder what our lives would be if we have taken other paths. But is that really bad? It is human nature to constantly question the choices that we make. Sometimes that consistent doubt can help us reevaluate our lives and make it better.
How can one save someone from themselves?
Can we rightfully call interfering with other’s lives “saving”?
Yes. There is a possibility of Myron failing to be a neurosurgeon and an athlete.
But, is that possibility more tragic than Myron dies at an old age and not able to tell himself “I had a terrific life doing what I love” before he looks at the world he lived in one last time?
I don’t think so.
Hi Jade, I really enjoyed your piece. How can we force someone to pursue something they don't enjoy? We should let others live their lives to the fullest, whatever that may be.
I agree with you when you said “no one can tell you what to do except you”. We need to decide our own path without being swayed by other people’s ideas or opinions.
Thanks for the great post!
Jade I agree with pursuing your dreams. I like how you express your ideas in Myron's decisions. Good piece of writing.
I agree with you. People shouldn't be forced to do something they don't like. They should be free to chase their dreams.
Exactly, we should just do what it means to be happy. Good overall post.
Jade, I really agree with your point. I think that each of us suppose to make our own decisions for life. Even though most of my own decisions were not so wise compare to what my mother suggested, I am happy to be who I am. We are walking on our own feet with our own shoes in our own road of life. No one can jump in, wear your shoes and walk your road.
i loved your post! I completely agree that every choice comes with its own group of consequences, many of which are unseen at the time. People should make their own decisions. Thank you for your insightful post.
My Roll in Myron Rolle
Myron Rolle is in a tough predicament. The NFL or becoming a neurosurgeon? Each profession, each dream, comes with hard work, dedication, and love for that particular occupation. Rolle is torn between two passions, and being the perfect fit for each career, the decision only gets harder.
Knowing that Rolle picks the NFL, and doesn’t succeed resulted in him making the wrong decision. Rolle had the power to choose the right path for himself, and only he knew what would be the right path. So when I see him fall short of what his dreams were, I see myself potentially falling short of what my dreams are.
When describing Rolle’s big decision, it is identical to my big decision.
D1 football or D3 football?
For those who are not familiar with sports, D1 football is football that you live, eat and sleep. Vise versa, D3 football is still competitive football, toned down so you can also focus on academics. The hard part is picking which one I would like to devote my time to. My future is being challenged right now. A decision has to be made in a very short amount of time.
The dream of playing D1 football and performing in front of thousands of people?
The dream of going to school, and performing in front of a small surgery team.
Both require a large amount of dedication, and persistence. Unfortunately they are totally different paths, in which lead you to two totally different lives. If I pick D1, I get to graduate college with a good degree, and all my athletic accomplishments will be reached. Consequently, I will be much more focused on football rather than school, and I may not graduate on time. If I pick D3, I will still get to play the sport I love, football, and I will have a head start on my medical degree.
Myron Rolle’s experience has helped me personally. I saw what happened to someone that wanted the dream of football (at a higher level), and didn’t succeed. He had the opportunity to become a successful doctor, and passed it for a sport that doesn’t always guarantee success. A man that I have never met helped my decision a little easier.
At this point in time, I could not tell you which route I am going to take. One day I may be leaning towards one option, but the next day the pendulum sings towards the other option. In two months my decision will be made, and I will share my choice in an upcoming blog.
Given the opportunity to see my future, I would not take it. Knowing too much of your future can destroy some one. The power to see beyond present time is too much of a gift. There fore I will pave my way through success, and leave no regrets.
“The future depends on what you do today.” – Mahatma Gandhi
I thought your title was clever, ha.
But I also really enjoyed your post! It seems like Myron Rolle’s situation is very similar to yours and I’m curious as to what decision you will make for yourself! I wonder if Myron Rolle’s decision and outcome will determine your own.
I hope you make a decision that your present self - and future self - will be proud of and happy with. I am already really excited to read your upcoming blog about your decision! Good luck and great job on this blog!
I really liked your post! I enjoyed how you related his situation so much to your own. It made it so personal and I could tell that you were really passionate about this post. Great work!!
I wholeheartedly believe gifted individuals in science or math should utilize their abilities to the fullest potential. We cannot and must not force him to follow our demands, but rather urge him to follow our path. He must be reminded of the children back in his home, the less fortunate. Shouldn’t he be compelled to help children that deserve a better future? If he came from there, he must’ve gotten an opportunity from some kind of luck. Rolle should at least give back to his community, allowing children to receive the same opportunity he had. The community can only grow as much as they are given. Rolle can either give back to the community by inspiring the children from his hometown to educate themselves or join the NFL for his own pleasures. Fortunately, he lives in America, therefore he bears the right to choose which ever option he wants. But we as the growing human race urge that these gifted individuals change the world even if it’s for one person.
Paul on the other hand was drafted into the army with no choice. When he is placed on the battlefield, it would be dangerous if he did not take orders. His entire team could be caught and killed in seconds because of his rash behavior. It was imperative that he followed the plan so that he doesn’t harm his own teammates with his selfish acts. Society has the rights to draft Paul into the army because he resides in whatever country and the law states he must serve. I think commanding him to kill another man is just terrifying and should never happen to anyone. Paul shouldn’t be asked to bear this burden. He should be put in another part of the army, other than the frontlines. There are solutions to everything.
I enjoy your post, and It is easy to understand what your opinions about Paul and Rolle
I really like that you laid your ideas out one by one next to each other. It made your blog post really easy to read and understand.
Ok this is totally non related to the topic, but I thought that first post was my comment seeing as how our names are ridiculously similar. I liked how you compared the two people and offered your views like that.
Maurice, your first paragraph was very inspirational- it made me more motivated about using my talents to help others and your reference to Paul was completely logical and the whole blog in general was convincing. I agreed with everything you said.
Potential and Future
Being a person like Rolle who had many potential and his future still being a variable with many possibility would be stressful.
Sometimes there are moments when the bigger the expectation, the bigger the disappointment.
There would be stress on people who had potential and maybe accidentally be good at something they don’t want to be good at.
There are times where people around them, friends or family, tell them to do or focus on things they good at, no matter the individual wants it for the future or not.
Our dreams change, and our identity changes. The childish naïve version of us might tell us to be a lawyer, be a doctor, just because our parents wanted us to be one. However, now we are grown ups, we have our own dreams and what we might want to do something we like, but our parents will try their best to change us.
It is true that parents have more experience in life and they might know more then we do, but is it worth it to do something that makes a little more money but we know we don’t like doing?
It sounds like Rolle doesn’t have a chance to pick his own path, if he doesn’t want to disappoint his dad or anyone around him. However, Rolle should choose his own fate, his own future. He should do what he wanted to do, at least he can be happy to work and do what he likes to do.
It is impossible to try to satisfy everybody’s will, no matter how good he is in every way. There is no path he can walk for the rest of his life, without bumps and alternates. He can always switch a path which will guide him to the destination.
With all the stress, it is hard to think straight, whether if Rolle wants to make money and do something he wants to do or play a sport he like. At this point it is a black and white area, there is no gray area. If he chooses football, and he wants to be professional, he had to dedicate all his time on the team practice and he would have no time to study neurology. If he chooses neurology over football he had to give up football, because the risk would be too big; in case of any accidents, his neurology dream would end.
The stress parents are giving potential kids today is far too much for the children to handle. Many parents started to teach their children multi-language early and let them take classes they do not even like. It is not the parents’ fault when they want their children to be successful and get a head start before other kids. They think they lived longer and are more experienced, therefore they know what is good for their children; however, they don’t understand that even if the children are making money because they are in one of the professional careers instead of doing what they like, are the children going to live on happy?
ken, that was a great way to word the idea and i totally agree with you; i felt like you just described my life in the last paragraph.
I like how you mentioned how parents think they know best because they have more experience. My dad tells me that all the time! I agree that we should do what we love because whether we choose to do something for someone else or for us, there are always going to be problems with the path we choose. I enjoyed your post a lot! Good job!
It’s funny how life deals you the cards.
Rolle is the type of person many envy. He is a true jack of all trades. Sometimes you get good hands and bad hands. Rolle is one who has had nothing but good hands. I don’t want my peers to breathe down my neck as I play my cards. So what do you do when you know you cannot fail? I look back at the letter I wrote to my future children…
I think about what if my children end up sharp, and having a drive. I don’t look at my children as my puppets, what right do I have to dictate what Rolle does? They are human right? I know Rolle has had the proper guidance from his mentors. I can help guide my children, but I will never force anything upon them. The stakes Rolle has are just as big as my children. A life has limitless value. Rolle, knows what makes him truly happy, he has done enough to see that. He has a good head on his shoulders; He knows he must fulfill his expectations and those of the people he truly cares about.
I am not afraid to let my children carve their own path. They are the artists, they create, and I am merely a guide. A man has the right to himself. I know my children will be the Picasso’s of their time; I wouldn’t let them settle for any less. I want them to be in positions people envy. I want them to have the decision of either being an astronaut or a game designer. I want him to create the next “Super Mario Bros”. Do what makes you happy. The ones that truly care for you only care if you are happy. That’s all I want out of my children. The more you care about yourself the more people tend to respect you.
My son, never be afraid to listen to your heart, it’s the only thing that can’t be taken away
I like what you had to say about "not being afraid of your children carving their own path.." We need more supportive people like you in our world. We ALL need to encourage others to pursue careers that they will enjoy.
All i can say is that any children you may have would really apprecitate your post! I also loved the repeated use of your playing cards metaphor. Great post!
Hi I liked how you said you are merely a guide to your children. I agree with that and I really liked the card playing part!
I think any children would be lucky to have you as a parent. I really appreciate your post. Thank you for sharing it.
Reading this really makes me wish that I had a parent like you. I only wish that all parents could have this mindset. I also really like the part where you said, "The more you care about yourself the more people tend to respect you." Self-respect is the fruit of discipline. Great post!
This post was so touching! Your mindset of how parenting works is so genuine, and I bet that any kid would love to hear this!
Also, I love how you put everything together. The way you talked about the cards was very nicely done. But I especially liked how you said, “I am not afraid to let my children carve their own path.” It just shows the world what type of person you are! Great job on this post!
I can definitely say you will have a very lucky son. I thought your first sentence was a very good hook, and was very clever. I feel so jealous of how caring, and understanding you'll be to your children. This is exactly how I want to be when I grow up. Thanks for posting this!
I wish you are my parent! I like your idea that children should have the right to do what they want to do. Thank you for your great post.
Hi Krystian, I have the same opinion with you that our children should have their own right to do what they like. The only thing parents should give is guidance, but what they do is still eventually up to them. Great post!
I always hated the black and white ivory keys. They leached away hours of my free time, forcing me to sit on the cold hard wooden bench. Every note feels as if a little bit of my soul is being sucked out.
I always hated piano practice and lessons with a passion. Truthfully, I hate it even now; I would have long since quite if my parents haven’t forced me to continue. Yet no matter what I say, I am still glad I started playing. Piano helped in many ways, I counted as an extracurricular for college and improved my patience (which I strongly lack), but most importantly I learned to trust the decisions of my parents.
Arguably my situation is very different form Myron Rolle’s but the core concept remains the same. Sometimes, people just need someone to tell them hey you have to pick one thing, you cannot do everything, someone to hold them back and have them really conceder is it really work it? Yes, you should follow your dreams, but that doesn’t mean you should just wait around. Not every risk is worth taking. I may not like what my parents force me to do, but I agree it is necessary to “protect me from myself”.
Life is short and sometimes opportunities just don’t come. This is not a perfect word and settling for the next best thing is just fine.
“Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both” – road not taken
When I started reading and read “I always hated the black and white ivory keys,” I automatically kept reading. Piano - it was the first thing that came to my mind and I completely feel your pain. I was forced to take piano lessons as well, and I honestly did not enjoy it one bit.
But as I read on, your post took a twist and your hatred for piano turned into thankfulness. It made me kind of think what would have happened if I continued with it. Would I be as thankful and appreciative as you?
I agree that we should trust our parents because in the end, they are doing things for our own good!
Love how your post is so self reflective. Great job!
I can definitely relate to your post, ironically I wrote very similar things about my piano experience, just not as in depth. I agree not only in our views of playing piano, but also how people need the extra push. Good post!
I totally agree with you. Life is short so being with someone who's not 100% for you it's ok. Great post!
Everyone is entitled to decide what their passion is and what they want to do. In Myron Rolle’s case, however, he wants to do too much. His passions are not connected to each other, making it impossible for Rolle to pursue both.
Would I hire him if I were the manager of the football team? I’ll be perfectly honest: I don’t know the first thing about football. However, just like any sports team, one must be devoted to his or her team. For this reason, I would not be able to bring myself to hire him. Because Rolle has another passion, he might not perform at his best during games. He would be too distracted in thinking about his other passion.
That being said, if I were a neurosurgeon, I would not want to hire him either. This is in vice versa to my reason for not drafting him to a football team. His passion for football would distract him from his studies. If he were to be sidetracked in the middle of a surgery, he might not be able to perform the surgery as well. It is for this reason that I would not be able to take Myron Rolle in for the studying as a neurosurgeon.
I totally agree with you. As an athlete I would not appreciate it if one of my team mates was not trying his best even though everyone else is trying their best so I would not draft him either.
Once a person experiences the horrors of war, they can never forget. Once a person gets a taste of the good life, they can never settle for less.
Even if he survived, he could never be happy again. Perhaps with hard work he could get close to happy. Perhaps he could fool himself into believing that everything would be ok. Taking lives, bordering on death every second, cruel attacks of anxiety through your very being, facing all nine rings of hell, and coming face to face with death itself; this is what war leaves you with. I have seen many people who claim to be veterans, people who fought bravely in war, but now they are on the streets begging the same people they shed blood for.
Most are there because they are unable to adjust back to mundane, peaceful lives. The shadows of their memories continue to haunt them long after the wars. It’s almost impossible to forget the red stained uniforms, and the pale dead faces of comrades. I know I would never be able to stomach a person’s death, regardless of them being enemies or not. I truly believe that Paul Baumer can never forget the scars inflicted upon him. No amount of gold medals or celebration can bring back the lives that were scarified, and he would have to live with the guilt of killing for the rest of his life.
Having everything, being looked up on by so many others, and then losing all of it to live a modest life. This sounds hard, and almost impossible. Knowing what fame, fortune, and being on top tastes like; I believe that Rolle could never settle for less. Being so talented, being told that the rest of your future is filled with success and wealth. How could Rolle live with the disappointment of millions of people? How could he cope with living a life considered “normal?”
I feel that Rolle could never settle for anything less than the best, because that’s how people perceived him as. He will always try to reach further, and further; thus making everything else seem less, and less desirable. I feel that Rolle will never be able to love what he has at that moment, because everyone will keep pushing him to reach higher.
I really liked your first two sentences because they’re things that I don’t really think about, but I find it very true.
When you said “It’s almost impossible to forget the red stained uniforms, and the pale dead faces of comrades,” it gave me shivers! In a good way of course!
I find that your reflection of how Rolle “will never be able to love what he has at that moment,” is very true. Pressure from everyone just ruins those kinds of moments.
Great job, and great post!
I really liked the way you ended your blog; I also agree with you as well. People who have accepted it cannot accept it happily because he or she will always be pushed harder and harder for something else.
I like how the rest of your post is basically an extension from the first sentence. I agree with you on how much of an impact the war has on people; it creates scars that cannot be healed. It's true that living a normal life is virtually impossible for people like Rolle when the whole world is watching his every movement and expecting him to accomplish something big in his life.
Thank you for the read! I really like it!
I like how you started off describing Paul's world and tying it to Myron Rolle's world. It flowed really well.
I agree with the fact that Paul wouldn't be able to live a normal life after going through all the killing and blood and gore. He'd probably end up with postpartum depression or go crazy with the guilt thats eating him alive. I also agree that Rolle wouldn't be able to live a normal life because he was always pushed to be the best.
Your post was different than most of the others which I really liked. Your explanation on war was interesting. Overall good post!
your post rocks! I love the way you describe war, and how your opinion differs quite a bit from others. It makes your post unique and exciting. Keep up the good work.
It takes people, things or accomplishments for one to become happy, but it takes a whole different mentality for one to be fulfilled. We humans are born with the mindset of perfection. We work to become richer, we study to become smarter, and we practice to become better. We live to be perfect. It is evident pursuing for betterment is part of our human nature, although many of us are conscious of the fact that it is impossible to reach perfection. Nevertheless, we go after it anyways, just like children chasing a rainbow. Though we can’t become perfect, we can certainly be better. Becoming better, however, means taking risks. The more we live, the more we learn and the more we do for betterment, the more we expose ourselves to more and greater dangers. Because we cannot see the future, we consistently take risks to have a shot at a better life, regardless of consequences of failure. We try, we fail, we try again. We fall down seven times and stand up eight. That is how we have come to be. But let’s say if one could see the future and had he seen what Paul’s seen before he went off for war, I truly believe that he would be happy with the life he currently has. I mean, who would bet in a gamble already knowing that he is going to lose? Who would give a better life for something that is worse?
The fact that some people are never able to know peace, to know real satisfaction is a rather a blessing than a curse. Why settle for what you currently have when you know you could have better? The reason we humankind is at the superior position we are in right now is because we never stopped looking for more, we never gave up our ambition, we “never ceased to stand like curious children under the great mystery into which we were born.”
The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost perfectly correlates to the situation Rolle was in. Ahead of Rolle lay two diverged roads, he cannot travel both, nor could he see clearly ahead either one. Rolle stands before the greatest conviction of life, before the one decision that would determine his future - the one decision that every individual has to face. Neural surgeon or professional football player? Both choices sound equally as promising, yet both are covered in the shrouds of uncertainty. Rolle picked the latter - a path ostensibly less traveled by - only to find out both choices had been worn about the same. Whether Rolle regretted we do not know, but one thing we do know: he trampled over all the areas he could on the path he chose. He did not have to know what lies far down the two paths before him, he simply seized what he was given as a result of his choice, and that has made all the difference.
I really like the ideas in your post. I think you could have saved the middle part of your post for a conclusion but it as still a great read.
I especially liked the latter portion of you blog post. Very insightful and well-put. Great job on the post!
What do goals really mean to us?
Some people set small goals. Some set ones that they know they might have a bit more of a struggle reaching. Then others set goals that they know will take full dedication and might possibly be one of the toughest things they will ever attempt to achieve.
These thoughts we have before they are formed into a goal are really doubts we have. Yet when we establish them as goals in our minds, it is us challenging ourselves of whether or not we are capable of reaching it. Also, if we even accept the challenge.
We try to be the best we can, judging our successes on the opinions of our parents, siblings, coaches and friends. Yet, sometimes we never stop to think about how we see ourselves, judge ourselves, to see if we are able to call ourselves successful. We might think of things we have accomplished, but how many of those accomplishments were ones that we wanted for ourselves and not to impress or please other people? Goals are what give us the answer that we look for when we look at ourselves in the mirror. Sometimes the answer we get back isn’t positive when we accept the challenges of those goals and don’t succeed. The thought of our failures clouds our accomplishments.
When we don’t achieve a goal, we usually get the mind set of “well, I tried” soon moving on and forgetting about that hollow goal. We become failures. After those goals are forgotten, we might end up achieving something that wasn’t even planned. Then that is when we feel like we have achieved something when it wasn’t even a goal to begin with.
Should we care more about those unplanned achievements rather than the ones we gave up on?
Those abandoned goals should matter more. The expectations we set for ourselves should give us more glory than the pity accomplishments that we never really had our minds set on. Those goals were once important to us. We should be able to find the strength in ourselves to try to achieve them rather than trying once and then feeling bad for ourselves after one failure. We should never accept failure just because of one. Once my History teacher Mr. Marston lent me a book of quotes and I found one that really made me think about my goals I had once given up on.
“Never confuse a single defeat with a final defeat.” –F. Scott Fitzgerald
When we give up, it is because we choose to. Do we not have enough self-confidence to think that we might possibly be able to reach gold? We should be able to prove to ourselves, not to our parents or friends, but ourselves that were worth to have the spark to do something great for YOU only. To be able to amaze ourselves with something we had so much doubt in our minds of possibly never achieving. Our goals are one small thing that can make us feel like we have power; our one chance to be selfish and want something for us. Goals that prove we should be able to believe in ourselves more than anything else. We only live once and can only make ourselves proud once. Why not challenge ourselves to see what unbelievable things we are capable of? Why not spend our life taking risks and seeing what we might possibly be able to achieve?
Even with our dreams, we let people get the best of us and make us feel that are dreams are not as magical. Some feel that to have a dream it has to be something out of a Disney movie, but that is not the case. A dream to me is anything we can imagine one day happening. No dream is too big or too small. Then goals come in the picture. Those goals we set for we are the baby steps we take to slowly making our dreams come true. Without dreams we are nothing. We have no character or hope. Without goals we have no trust; trust in ourselves that we might possibly be able to be something more than we might have imagined.
Those goals we set for ourselves are the baby steps we take to slowly making our dreams come true.*
I really enjoyed the way you describe how and why we would choose our own futures and decisions. Great job!
I really enjoy reading your post. Thank you for sharing all your wonderful thoughts, they are unique, and they make me think. Great post.
Thanks! I've never been told that before! That really means a lot!!
Great post, i like how you talked about the future.
Every people are endowed with the right to do whatever they desire to do, including pursuing their passion. However, that doesn't necessarily mean throwing them at a crossroad and expecting them to pick a right path that could very well determine the fate of their future. They need guidance, especially for gifted individual like Myron Rolle.
“Don’t be a feather in the wind, take ownership of your life.” If live your life aimlessly, you might as well prepare to live a life of failure. A person needs to focus and be passionate in order to excel at his /her profession. It is virtually impossible to succeed at a certain thing when a person strays from his/her dreams and goals and winds up lingering between the choices of careers without the slightest idea of what he/she wants to be. In Rolle’s case, that choice is between a NFL player and a neurosurgeon.
When a person is placed at a dilemma like this, as cruel as it is, a choice has to be made. No one is omnipotent, not even Myron Rolle. Once you've picked a path, there’s no going back. You concentrate on it and enjoy every second you spend on it.
So somewhere in other alternate dimensions, if I happen to carry the responsibility of raising Myron, how would I treat him? If I’m raising Myron, I would assist him in searching his passion, not necessarily the things he’s good at, but instead, the things he actually likes – the things he is willing to devote himself into without any regret. That way, when he reflects upon his life, he wouldn't dwell on the dreams he never got the chance to accomplish with dissatisfaction and regret.
I agree that everyone has the right to choose what they desire and how they need guidance for their paths. Thanks for the read!
Life of Myron
Myron Rolle, a man of so many options and choices. One can only dream of having that much talent. Being an everything man.
It must feel great.
Being athletic, intelligent, and ambitious. These are traits that almost everyone wishes they had. I myself wish I had these traits. Between all the choices Myron has, he chose to pursue his path in football. The big question is, will he become successful? Even though he has missed years of practice, will he be successful in becoming a first round pick, and later and NFL All Star?
Due to his lack of practice and playing senior year, even as an All Area Safety, I do not see much in Myron Rolle’s future as a NFL first round pick. He may be able to join a team and be a 3rd string player, possibly, but it is highly unlikely. I do not think Myron will be injured and after not getting play time, I feel he will recognize his skill in being a Neurosurgeon. It will take time, a few years in fact, but I know that as smart of a guy Myron is, he will find his way.
Myron has everything I wish I had. I WANT to be skilled in the medical field. I WANTED to be the football all star at Arcadia High School. I wish I had the opportunity he has. I wish I had his skills. It is unfortunate he did not become a first round pick in the draft. It is unfortunate he is only seen as a practice player. Maybe it is fate? Possibly. Maybe he will eventually become a star in the NFL. Another possibility.
If I were Myron, I would want to know my future ahead of time so I would not waste my talent and time. Time is precious, and a resource we can never take back. Some may say that he learned is learning a lesson about life, but I think that time to Myron is something that is very important. Being a man with his potential, he needs all the time he can get, so he can do great things in the world.
i liked your own relation to Rolle on Arcadia. As we all come closer and closer to realizing our true potential. I especially love your use of repetition with wanted showing the regret. The time is now, let's go.
I can feel your desires to own those talents that Rolle has. We envy him equally.
The feeling of achievement that comes after I achieve what I have desired can never be the same as a sense of achievement that comes when I achieve what parents tell me to try. If I am raising Myron Rolle, I would let him try whatever he wants. I don’t want to be a parent who limits his future. What if he loses everything because has not focused on one area? Then, what would Rolle eventually get when he focuses on one area? In my opinion, that is just a matter of perspective. There is always gain and loss. Everything he gives up is a cost to have a more fulfilling life.
If a parent makes him focus on one area without considering what he wants, I would consider that it is the parent’s selfishness. If Rolle does whatever he wants, people might think Rolle is selfish for not contributing his exceptional gifts to the world. However, the people who expect him to maximize his gifts are also selfish in my eyes. They have expectations of Rolle hoping to live in a better life or fulfill their own needs. There is no enough. The more he lives up to people’s expectations, the greater their expectations will be. He cannot even meet everybody’s expectation as everybody has all different kinds of demand.
I believe Rolle will be more appreciative of his special talents when he feels fulfilled. I would encourage Rolle to do what fulfills him and I hope I can really be supportive when my real child tries to find his or her passion in the future.
Hi child of feraco,
Well. I totally agree you point here. But think about it this way. Personally, I want to be a professional basketball player and I am also able to be a physical therapist. And with talent and passion, I see myself in the same position with Rolle. After all, Rolle is not that good. He is not Tom Brady as one of my peers said in his blog. So as a parent, don't you think you should give some suggestion while he is basically lost. Isn't that what parents for? When the child is confused, she would give some kind advice. And I am not talking about forcing. I am talking about suggesting so that he will see a bigger picture.
After all thank you for expressing your opinion and the great read.
Hello child of Feraco
I like how you give rolle a choice. I totally agree. Like you, i believe every person has a right to do what they love or what they believe in. Keep up the good work!
Hey Anonymous one!
I like how you took a point of view from different directions. I agree with you because so many of us do so much for our parents and without realizing it, they are being selfish at some point by the things they expect us to do and achieve.
Throughout our lives we learn a lot of stuff, also a lot of us get the chance to make our own choices. Making your own choices does not suddenly start, we make our own choices since we were kids a lot of us make the wrong choices but some of us make the right ones. However threw our lives we learn that some of the choices we made were bad ones and others were good ones, and while we are growing up we learn how to make the better choices that will help our future lives.
Many people discover threw out there lives that they are successful in certain stuff. A number of us discover that they are successful in sports, others in education and so on. However most of us have goals and most of the time we do not set of our life goals that we have always dreamt about doing aside because we realized that we are successful in ways we did not even know about.
We are not supposed to set of our goals or our dreams aside because we found out that we are successful in other ways. Most of the time if people end up following the thing that they were successful in they will regret it, because sooner or later they would realize more stuff that they did not know about it and they might not actually like it or even like doing whatever they found out that they are successful in. And no matter what you found out that you are successful in you will not do it if you did not like it.
Hi, Child of Feraco
Oh yah, of course we should not put our dreams aside. But don't we need to weigh which dream is practical and which one is not? We can't take things for granted. At the same time, where should we set that line, the line that separates dream and goal? We want to be so many things. But we do have a limit. So, like you said sometimes we might be successful but we are not happy about it. Then what should we do chasing a unreachable dream? Or find something more realistic and be good at it at the same time learn the beauty of it and be happy about it?
Thanks for the read.
A third batch of anonymity!
I think I will abandon the dreams I never realized or the goals I never met cause that is meaningless for my life. Why do we need to chase the goals that we cannot even touch it? Undoubtedly, life is not as easy as what we think about it, we should not give up the dreams or goals that we intend to achieve. Do not gave up the dreams when we met the embarrassment, but do not insist on the goals that we know we can never achieve either.
Sometime, I also will struggle in the brink between abandon and persist. I won't give up my dream when I encounter the frustration because I believe I can touch my goal someday, just not now. However, when I understand my dream that I imagine it cannot be possible to achieve, I will be decisively relinquish that, and outcrop the new goal to work on.
Each goal for everyone contains the different meaning, and all of them are important to everyone in their life. I have goals for myself, and I have a lot, not only one, some of them is short term, some of them will affect the future. Those goals I set up all important to me, and each time I achieve a goal will let me feel like I am successful. Although each goal of mine is very important to me, I also won't force myself that try to achieve that if it cannot come true. Life cannot say "give up" easily, but understand when should relinquish also important.
You should be posting with your name on.
Because I want to meet you. You are a good writer with a good perspective of life. And I could be biased since I treat people nicer when they agree with me. Don't we all?
Though I agree with you on the most part, I have another concern. The dreams that we give up could make us regret later in the life. We will be mad at ourselves for not give it a try. So when should we give up these seemly unreachable dreams? Do we get on the path first and realize it that it is a wrong decision? Or we just don't give it a try at all?
Thank you for the read. Good job.
you make a good point when you talk about how we shouldnt just give up on a goal, but at the same time how it is important to realize when to reliquinsh past goals.
There will always be a consequence or a good result with every choice that is made – it may even be both. An easier way of putting this is using the term, Sink or Swim. Either you’ll go with the flow of the tide and swim your way to the treasure or you’ll sink beneath the tide and risk finding your treasure.
Would you be able to risk your treasure?
Rolle’s treasure was his wide range of endless possibilities. Although, he could merely have one, because if he were to get injured in his dream of becoming a pro football player it might put his other dreams in jeopardy.
Unlike Rolle I am fearful of failure; I know how it feels when you fail and it’s not a good feeling. It gets inside your head, and it easily can rip you apart. If I was exceptional in one field, I would be happy. I wouldn’t want to risk giving that up for a different dream.
Paul’s treasure was his ability to keep his emotions steady in order to preserve his sanity and survive, but that same treasure was also a curse. He became absent-minded to his feelings towards others and to his past. Although, if Paul were to risk letting his emotions take over he would have been killed in the war and it would have destroyed him.
I am both like and unlike Paul. I can put aside my emotions to preserve my sanity, but at the same time I can’t stay like that for a long time. I always risk letting my emotions bottle up inside and destroy me.
“So save yourself
Because the tide is rising high
It’s sink or swim
It’s hit or miss
What will you pick?
So take some action
Don’t let the undertow grab hold
It’s sink or swim
It’s hit or miss
-Sink or Swim by Falling in Reverse
Hi Haley, I really liked the poem Sink or Swim by Falling in Reverse you used. It correlates adequately to your post.
I really like how you used "swim" and "sink" to compare the choices. I think everyone has to take risk in order to pursue a dream. Nobody likes going through failure, but it is the only way we will learn.
Stuck Between a Rock and a Hard Place
Myron Rolle deserves the right to choose what he wants to be. Society does not have the right to force people to do things that we believe they should do just because they are good at it. Yes, Rolle is good at a lot of things but he has to ultimately decide on what he wants to be. Whether it is a NFL player or a neurosurgeon, it’s his decision and his decision alone.
Although he might be passionate about both, he needs to experience them before he can say he truly wants to be either one of them. However, he cannot in this instance because there is no way he can just have a taste of it. He either has to BE an NFL player or BE a neurosurgeon, he cannot be both. There is no way to compromise between the two because they are on opposite spectrums of the job market. One is sport related the other is medicine related; therefore he has to choose one.
That is why if I were the one raising Rolle, I would allow him to make his own choice. However, I would also encourage him to look at the facts and take them all in before making a final decision. I would want him to follow his heart and choose the one he loves more. If he has no passion towards his career he would end up resenting the one who encouraged him to go down that path in the first place.
I would raise him how I want to be raised.Because if I were in his shoes I would resent my parents if they tried to sway me from doing the thing I love. If I were in his shoes I would want to be treated with respect. I would want to be able to choose my own destiny and not have interference. Even if I end up losing everything, at least I would have had the choice. I made a decision and now I have to live with it.
That’s what it ultimately comes down to. Being allowed to make your own decision and then being able to live with that choice once you've made it.
I agree with what you said on how you would raise Myron. People deserve rights to do what they love and if someone tries to stop you, you have every right to resent them. Great post! I enjoyed reading it and I like the title.
“Keith lets go! Keith lets go! Hop onto the car!” mom said.
“Where are we going?” I questioned.
“We are going to start Kendo and become strong!” mom explained.
“What is it?” I questioned again.
“We are going to Downtown LA to pract…..” the voice faded away.
As usual, mom’s voice faded away since her explanations were too long and tiring. I thought it is going to be one of those things that ends up not happening; however, this activity changed my life.
Without knowing what was going on since I was only six years old, I stepped onto the stage for a competition. At that time, I was really confused about competitions. I did not even know what it was.
“Is it a show? Is it a performance? What am I supposed to do?”
“Just try to strike a point off your opponent Keith just hit it!”
I just obeyed my mom. I was pretty surprised because I beat everybody until the final round in the first competition. I ended up getting second place in the individual championship. After I got up on stage to receive the trophy, I felt incredibly joyous because of the round of applause by more than two hundred people. I was successful in this sport when I was not intending to be successful.
Before I started Kendo, my goal was to be in as many activities as much as I can, but since I learned the feeling of achievement of winning Kendo competitions, I was able to focus on just “Kendo” disregarding school work. I thought doing another activity would be too much work for my body and would be too time consuming. My focus is still in Kendo today.
Although I did not intend Kendo as a sport to be successful, it turned into a new goal I should strive for. As I continued to practice hard, I started to set goals that are extremely difficult to achieve. My goal after my first win when I was little was to win the All California championship, the second was to win the national championship, and the biggest goal is to win the world championship, which I did not achieve yet.
Without meeting goals, there could be no chance of going up to the next level.
I really like your blog. I never knew your passion for kendo until now. You live and breath kendo! Knowing you as the happy go lucky guy you are i feel like a really know your true ambitions. Keep swinging buddy
The thing that drew me in was your conversation with your mom - I like reading the posts that have conversations, ha.
Starting kendo at such a young age... wow. It’s amazing how young someone can find their passion and stick to it even years later.
You really do seem like you have a passion for kendo and I feel like you can achieve all of the goals that you have set for yourself. Yes, they are big goals but your passion will help you with that. Great job!
Keith, I really like that you stick to your passion and strive to become successful at it. Keeping doing what're your doing. Great post!
Hey Keith, I really liked your story about Kendo. It's a pretty cool sport and thanks for sharing how you became what you are today. I hope you hold yourself up to your own expectations.
I'm glad you found where your passion lies. With your determination, I believe you can achieve what you wanted to. If Kendo is what you desire, then never give up! good luck!
Hey Keith, I find it interesting that your passion started from your mom taking you there first. She really knows what suits you best.
Interesting how something that was introduced by your parents could later excel to such great heights. Unlike you, my situation was a little less "excelling." Being "introduced" to piano, I ended up playing the instrument because of expectations rather than personal enrichment, causing the entire process to be very frustrating and, sometimes, tormenting. I'm glad there is always another outcome.
People that are gifted with both the talent to achieve their dreams and the skills to succeed in another position are burdened to choose, few could choose both.
Similar to Rolle, although not at such an experienced level, I am gifted with the stamina to withstand a long amount of physical activities. I have been active with sports for my entire life and I have climbed my way through all sorts of levels finally ending up at the starting point on varsity. Aside from extracurricular activities, I am also able to understand logic and theories quite easily. Without lots of practice, or personal studying, I can learn and understand simply.
My parents are always pushing me towards the direction of books and school; I never enjoyed it. I’m the type of person, like many others, to enjoy the outdoors and turn away from the literature. I could never sit down firmly and be able to just study without taking breaks every now and then. I craved to be moving, to be “free.”
As senior year passes by, I have already submitted my applications with a major that I am confident in. College is just around the corner and everything is about to change, my peers and I are taking our steps into adulthood; into the real world. I followed the path that my parents wish that I made. Putting aside my athletic views, I chose to become something else.
In Robert Frosts words “I took the one less traveled by,/ And that has made all the difference.”
I really enjoyed reading your post, it was so relatable! My parents always push me towards school as well, always making me do extra.
It’s saddening to hear that you put aside your athletic views, but I still wish you the best for the future. Good luck with college and everything else! Great post!
I exactly know how you feel by "Enjoy the outdoors and turn away from the literature." aha! I hope you get accepted to more colleges! Keep up the good work!
A person as great and knowledgeable as Myron Rolle can be quite enviable. Myron Rolle is a highly gifted young man with the academic charisma to become a great neurosurgeon. While he is equipped with such academic abilities he also is equipped with a passion for football. Rolle wants to become a first round draft to the NFL but rather becomes drafted in the sixth round. While his career for football looks very dim, Rolle still has a chance to prevail in his academic career.
Rolle has become a very rermarkable young man, from being a top ranked high school recruit to an Oxford scholar. His academic abilities seem to be the luck of the draw in life.
If i was Rolle i would indeed greatly appreciate the ability to look into the future. If i can determine which path is the better path i would absolutely be relieved of such an obstacle as this. I believe that you really cannot be able to fully devote yourself into one thing if you are slightly devoting a part of your time to something else. This seems to be Rolle's case. If Rolle were to see into the future, i believe, he should realize that one career will lie ahead, one career that will better him in the long run. If I were to see into the future, I would see it no other way than i had previously described. One path , I believe, will be the better choice.
If I were Rolle, the ability to see into the future is a must. The future beholds your fate. Therefore, when critical choices occur, choose wisely.
We should be thankful if we are talented in something that we did not expect it to be talented. There are some people who are struggling to find their talents. Also there are many people, including myself, do not know what they are good at. I believed that unintended talents can help us to reach our goals and our dreams more successfully. We should equally value both of our unintended talents and our dreams because actually knowing or finding what we are good at or successful at is a big blessing.
Also unintended talents can play as a backup for our original dream or goal. These unintended talents can be our second choice of our dream. Having many talents can give us many opportunities especially in our career field. I think meeting our goals is very important. However, our unintended talents should be equally valued because these talents can be useful in the future and will give many opportunities. For example my cousin dreamed to become a singer in Korea and this was her main goal in her life. She only put her time practicing singing and dancing; she did not use her time in her school work. She auditioned in different entertainments many times; however, the results of the auditions weren't good.
However, she was unintentionally talented in math and chemistry. She did not put her time and effort in studying math and chemistry but she constantly got the highest grade in her class. I don’t know if she has high IQ or not but she was successful in ways she didn't intend to be successful. These unintended talents gave her more wide variety of her career field. She originally wanted to become a singer and she tried hard to become one but due to the bad results of the auditions, she changed her dream to become a pharmacist. Although she had to give up her original goal of becoming a singer, now she works as a pharmacist and she is happy about her occupation. These unintended talents gave her the second choice of her dream and gave her the opportunity to become a pharmacist.
I really enjoyed ur post. I am sorry to hear about your sister. I agree how u talked about unintended talents. Keep up with ur wonderful post
Jenny I liked your post. I hope your cousin can achieve her dream of being a singer someday!
I am glad that your cousin found other talent but I just want to say that if she still wants to be a singer, go for it. She can still work as a pharmacist and try out for auditions. It is never too late to try again to achieve a goal.
Also, I am sure that you will find your talent one day.
- Potential -
Myron Rolle is talented at almost everything, and he has the right to decide what he wants to do with his own life like everyone else. If I am his friend, I would encourage him to find out what he truly loves and desires to focus on as his life time career. However, since his potential is very well-rounded, he has the ability to help others or even make a difference in the society. Most of the people have the right to try whatever they want, but not all of them can take responsibility of the consequences their choices might bring. People like Myron Rolle also (of course) have the right to try anything they like, to make life-changing decisions, but can they also be responsible for the consequences which might cause them to lose everything they have? As a high school senior, I need to start finding out what I really am passionate for in order to know what I am going to be in the future. I believe when Rolle was still a teenager, his teachers and parents had tried to guide him to find his potential and a stable future career. We should advise Rolle with the same intention as his teachers or parents because the real world is competitive and heartless, millions of people are competing for jobs and opportunities. We should encourage those people who are like Rolle to focus on one goal rather than attempting to multi-task and end up aimless. Speaking about Rolle’s teachers and parents, it must be difficult for them to help shape his life. If I were Rolle’s guardian who is responsible to guide him to make major life decisions, I will suggest him focus on only one area where he is the most interested in. I do not mean to take away the chances from him to try and discover his potential, I wish he can learn how to make decisions for his own future and be faithful to his true-self.
I really like the part when you said "it is better to focus on one goal rather than attempting to multi-task" That will certainly get you no where. I think that is a problem most of us seniors have. We set many goals and we don't know where to start.
Thanks for sharing!
After reading, Rolle’s story, another athlete comes up in my mind, Matt Kuchar. He is a professional golfer. He is ranked 20th in the world and earned over 20 million dollars from competing in PGA tour. He was talented both in academic and sport just like as Rolle. When he was in college, Georgia Tech, he was the best amateur player. He won U.S Amateur and other tournaments over and over again. After two years of college, he had a chance to turn professional and get 2 million dollar a year in endorsement contracts. However he turned down to get his degree in business management. He said “I knew in my heart, if I gave up those years, I'd spend the rest of my life regretting it." Most people thought he was making the stupid decision because he might never get another chance to get sponsor and play on the PGA tour. There was no guarantee that he can get in the tour after earning his degree. However, earning his degree was as important to him as Rolle wanting to become a neurosurgeon. After graduating and earning his degree from Georgia Tech, he became an investment banker. While he was working, he still had the passion for golf. Later on he wanted play golf for his living; he missed his passion. He could have just be an investment banker and still make enough money. He could have lived an easier life. He did not need to go through all the qualifyings and sponsor exemptions for PGA tour. He chose the harsh road instead of the smooth road. He did not become successful right away; it took him years and years to get on the top level.
People like Matt and Rolle get a lot of attentions from others. Those attentions can block them from fulfilling their lives. Therefore, they should do whatever they want to do. They may bounce around but they are the ones who know what their true passions are and capable of making decisions. Would Matt enjoy his life, if he gives up PGA tour to live safer life as an investment banker, when he is capable of playing in PGA tour? Would Rolle enjoy his life if he becomes the president of Bahamas, when he is capable of being a NFL player or a neurosurgeon? I am positive that they won’t. They want to do what they love.
I want to be like Matt and Rolle. They made their own decisions regardless of what other people said. They turned down money and fame to achieve what they want to do. I also have goals for my life and want to achieve those goals. I might be bouncing around but I know myself the best on what I want to do. Will I regret if I fail from bouncing around? Well, I will have no regrets, if I try my hardest, make my own decisions and not achieve my goals. However, if I don’t try my hardest, other people control my fate, passion, and decisions and not achieve my goals, I will regret tremendously. I want to do what I love.
I liked how you compare rolle with another person. The similarities between them inspired me a lot. I hope you can achieve the goal that you are planning. I have faith in you that you will be more successful than rolle and matt!
I liked your perspective. Passion is what will fuel a lifetime career, and you pointed out the difference between being good at something compared with passionate about it. Finally, you assert yourself to learn from Rolle and Kuchar. Strong stuff.
Myron Rolle is clearly gifted with many talents--intellectually and physically with an interest in both aspects, therefore he faces a problem, but if I were the general manager of a football team, I would not draft Myron Rolle. Knowing that he has other far greater things to accomplish apart from joining the NFL, I wouldn’t risk the welfare of my team on someone who wasn’t 100% committed. I’d rather give the opportunity to someone who doesn’t quite have the raw talent that Rolle has, but has been dreaming his entire life to make it to the NFL and will work his tail off to surpass his capabilities, rather than someone who already has the ability but is doubting if he chose the right profession. I don’t mean that being an NFL player isn’t an incredible feat in itself, but Rolle is invested in other passions and goals besides football.
Undeniably, being an athlete is a full time job and I can’t have someone who’s worried about passing the boards while preparing the team for the next game plan. It just wouldn’t work. However, I’d feel no remorse for not drafting him. If anything, I just made it easier for him to choose what to do--become a neurosurgeon.
I imagine Rolle will never really be able to enjoy life’s simple pleasures because of his endless potential. Regardless of making a decision between an NFL player and neurosurgeon, he’ll still be expected to constantly do more. Seldom do we encounter an individual with so much skill, so people expect him to utilize all his talent, but people have to remember that he’s also just a human being. Unfortunately for him, sacrifices must still be made.
"I imagine Rolle will never really be able to enjoy life’s simple pleasures because of his endless potential." I very much agree with your point. Nice blog overall, keep up the effort!
"I’d rather give the opportunity to someone who doesn’t quite have the raw talent that Rolle has, but has been dreaming his entire life to make it to the NFL and will work his tail off to surpass his capabilities..."
Your comment is really insightful; I agree with you. I think if a young man wants to become to a NFL player, the most important thing he needs is passion and interest in the sport; talents can be helpful, but if he doesn't have passion, he is not good enough for NFL.
Hey Melanie! I liked your line "Seldom do we encounter an individual with so much skill, so people expect him to utilize all his talent, but people have to remember that he’s also just a human being." because I agree that such a gifted person is really a rarity, and though he's facing so much pressure, I also believe that he should choose the profession that benefits the whole world, even if he has to make a sacrifice.
All the successes and achievements that Rolle has obtained thus far are results of his hard work. Why shouldn’t he have the right to try what he wants? We should encourage him to do what he wants because a big part of following one’s dreams is drive. Forcing a person to do something will not create better results than letting a person choose to do something and do it with passion. Personally I would let Rolle bounce around because the risk is well worth it. I would rather have a broken Rolle than an unfulfilled Rolle that ends up wondering “What if” for the rest of his life.
That being said, society doesn’t have the right to demand so much of Rolle. Humans are not obligated to contribute to the world, at least not on such a large scale. The impossibility of the task being asked of Rolle voids this “responsibility” he has to the world.
Don’t get me wrong, I believe that we should contribute to society in any ways we can, but that does not mean that we destroy ourselves in an attempt to contribute.
I think that Rolle will try to become the NFL surgeon superman that others expect of him. He seems like the ambitious type, always aiming for the top. He will face others who are probably on his level or higher. I think he will fail. I don’t think he can pull it off with other rookies training harder and longer while he’s in Oxford. They all have the same drive and passion as him and I don’t think the marginal talent he may or may not have over the others is going to cut it. If I was in his position, however, I wouldn’t want to see into the future. I’d rather live to the fullest and leave those “What if’s” behind.
So what if I fail. So what if I am broken into millions of pieces. I wouldn’t have to worry about what could have been for the rest of my life. In my opinion, that is one of the worst feelings in life.
Instead, I can think about what will happen.
great way if putting it. you really got your thoughts across. your blog is easy to read.
I also believe that we have the right to make our own decisions and what others are expecting from us comes later. Good job on getting your point across!
I enjoyed reading your post. You made your points clearly and easy to understand. Overall, great job!
Everyone has there own perspective and ideas on how to be successful and happy. We people thrive on being rich and successful to make your parents proud, in order to achieve that we must study. We all want to become the best we can be and even if it seems impossible, we try and try and hoping one day it can become true. People thrive to become good people and the war was a thing that could prove to be a great thing. Its a risk that can prove to become dangerous and full of surprises, people do not see the full world that we live in, some people think its a peaceful place that is very boring and daily routine of how to live life but in the other side of the globe, something like war can be upon us and the viewpoint is totally different if you were to travel from the perspective of a soldier and a regular young adult who haven’t experienced anything with total danger and chaos. Paul have never experienced how life is on the other side of the globe which is full of danger and chaos, if he have known how it would have been and had the option to go back to the original life he had, he would have definitely taken it. Some people do not appreciate how the life was originally then to have it taken away and shoved out to war. When people have lost something that they wish could come back, its too late, you must toughen up and hope for the best.
Rolle's situation is a very popular occurrence that will happen to lots of people. His situation was to basically choose either being in the NFL or to become a Neural Surgeon. Both of these options were hard to choose by and both are ringing in his head on what would become better an fit him more, His mind is shrouded with deep thought and he would flutter himself with indecisive thoughts. Rolle had chooses and he did not know what will come in his way in the future but he has made his mind and he will cease to find if it was the right or wrong.
Hi Brandon, after reading your first blog post and now the third, I can easily see lots of improvements. Great job on the post keep up the effort!
The war was starting.
The blood could be seen everywhere, and the soldiers lost their hands, legs, or parts of their body. The war was just like bowling, for example, all of the soldiers in one unit were dead, or only few soldiers were survived. Those soldiers were nobody, and me, too. I was the lucky person who survived named Paul. When I looked around campsite every times, there was always one of my friends was left until all of them were gone.The war was evil that it took many people’s lives. Also, the countries used tons of soldiers’ lives to end the war that was why the war was cruel and teeming with dead bodies
Before I went to join the war and became a soldier, I had thought the war was worth resisting. Joining the war was glorious and honorable to against the enemy and protect the country. On the other hands, I realized everything was wrong after I joined the war. There was only death, gloomy places, and despair, and no one would know when they would die. I saw all my friends’ death, and I killed the French soldier who had his family at home before he killed me. The country used tons of soldiers’ lives to end the war that was why the war was cruel and teeming with dead bodies
At the end, we were still mere ciphers. Though the war was ended, the people will not remember us; the country will not honor us. I do not think the war was worth resisting anymore.
Very nice hook in the beginning! I really enjoy your post. Very good explanations of the settings. Keep up the good work!
Hey I really enjoyed reading this through another perspective than the original author. It is like a fun side episode.
Very nice post, i like how you talked about the settings.
If I am Paul, I won’t think War is resisting. Because I think people only live once, and why should we take the life risk just because of the war. I know we should fight for our life, our country, but I think it’s too dangerous to do this.
If I am Rolle, I think NFL is worth to risk. Because it’s not easy to find the thing that you actually like. If you love this thing even you have never tried before, I think you should still try it and take the risk because you never know what you are capable of.
Hey there! I completely agree that it's better to take the risk. I think that if you don't take the risk then you'll end up regretting it later. Nice job!
I agree that we only live once. We all should take risks because you never know what we will discover. I like your post. It was short and to the point. Great job!
I like the whole "take the risk" idea in the NFL, but why would you then shine away a career that would not only benefit you in something you love and a great career, but also in a field that is constantly growing and is capable of saving thousands of lives rather than providing entertainment?
Expectations and Potential
When I was in elementary school, my teachers often asked the question, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” We even had a spirit day that we called “Career Day”. All the kids in the school dressed up in the clothes of what they wanted to be in their future career. Students dressed up as nurses, teachers, firefighters, and lawyers--we could careless about what people had to say about the careers we wanted to pursue. I dressed up as a doctor on that day because it was what my mother wanted me to be.
As time passed by, I slowly began to realize that there were so many other careers in the world that fit my interests. I wanted to become an animator, a concert pianist, a voice actor, and start my own clothing line--I wanted to do a lot of things. No matter how much I wanted to pursue a certain career, I decided to stick to my parent’s idea of becoming a doctor--or at least, keep its possibility open since I was still in an indecisive state.
To me, the expectations that my parents had for me were a poisonous kind of flattery. I was happy that they believed that I had the potential to become a doctor, but it was also poisonous because the more they believed that I could be this and do that--I was slowly being brainwashed--my identity being taken away from me-- and I was losing sight of what I had originally wanted to become. My mother one day asked me, “Ignore the fact that we want you to be a doctor for now. What career do you want to take up in college?” As much as I wanted to say music education, I couldn’t bring myself to say it. I was so used to having my parents tell me to become a doctor, that my mind was set to only that.
Honestly, I still want to take up a career where I will be able to put my musical abilities into play. I want to be able to choose my own career. I only get one chance at life and I feel that I should be able to at least choose what path to take. My parents from the start put a label on me, but it just didn’t feel right to me.
Life is short, so why should be kept from dedicating our lives to something we love? People can only expect so much from a person, however, shouldn’t the person’s feelings first be considered before we pressure them into doing something else? I’d rather live a simple life doing what I love to do, than lead a life doing something that I am not truly happy with.
“The most loving parents and relatives commit murder with smiles on their faces. They force us to destroy the person we really are: a subtle kind of murder.”
Hi Krystle, though I think Rolle should sacrifice his dream of landing in the NFL, I thought your post was great; I do agree that you only live once, so you should pursue doing what you like not what others want you to do as well. Goodjob!
I understand what you mean by "poisonous kind of flattery." I totally agree it isn't easy to live by others exoectations. Great post!
Myron Rolle was a very talented guy who had many opportunities to do what he wanted. On the other hand Paul had fewer opportunities because of the wartime he lived in. I don’t think it is right to compare Myron to Paul. One is a Rhodes Scholar the other is a nameless soldier. One is a neurosurgeon the other is shell-shocked and hopeless. One is trying to figure out how to change the world while the other is trying to figure out how to stay alive. All these things show how different they are from each other and shouldn’t be compared.
It is ridiculous to ask if Myron is able to be successful. He is one of the most talented people in the world and will have no problem finding something he loves and doing it well. A better question is “Can Myron ever do enough?” The problem with this question is we don’t know who is asking. Enough for who? Enough for the NFL? Enough for the field of neurosurgery? Enough for the Bahamas? All of these questions are certainly important but ultimately the most important question is what is enough for Myron.
If I were Myron Rolle simply doing what I love would be enough for me. This may not mean that I have to do everything. However, I can always choose to do something else if I want to. Myron has the luxury to do many things, I would try each of the things I love to do before choosing the one I love the most. Paul on the other hand doesn’t have the opportunity to make these choices in a warzone. Paul is just simply fighting every day for survival. If I were Paul I would have little say in what I wanted to do with my life. For these reasons Paul and Myron could not be more different.
Waiting to Panic, Vexed and Glorious as Ever
I remember those Fridays when I had nothing to do after school but too excited for the weekends to go home, so I would go to the mall with my best friend, Tiffany, and stayed there until the mall closed. All we did was swarming around the stores and acting like it was our big closet. Or those weekends when I finished all of my homework and I would call all of my girlfriends and we would go out and have boba. Those days are still clearly appearing in my mind. But now that I started working, five days a week, those kinds of leisure got taken away. I have to serve others on a Friday night or weekend, instead of enjoying it with my friends; all those for earning money.
It seems like I lost a lot of life’s little things that make me happy. But in fact, I like how it is right now. Now that my time is scarcer, I learned how to cherish the free time that I have, and learn how to manage it more wisely. And I also got money and experience in return. I think my sacrifice is worth it. Myron Rolle was facing a very difficult decision in his life, choosing football or neurosurgeon. I would suggest him to really consider the long-term future of both, and give up one of them. I’d rather see him grieve over giving up one career than risk the possibility of losing both.
I think the success in one career will be much more satisfying than try a little bit of this, and a little bit of that. I never regret of getting a job even though it means that I had to give up some time with my family and friends. Whenever I got a chance, I am still able to manage my time and spare a free day for them. This decision does not have to be so extreme, if Myron Rolle chooses neurosurgeon, he can coach for a small football team, or if he choose NFL, he can still volunteer for a hospital. There are many options he can choose other than risk of losing both careers. The meaning of life comes from achieving a goal that you really desired, not becoming somebody who meets everybody else’s expectations.
I liked your last quote. Like me, you stated that Myron Rolle would never be happy if he did not make the choice that he wanted to make. Although, I do believe that it stems deeper than that. I think that, looking back, he will enjoy either of those choices, because they presented him with extraordinary opportunities. Does his success in any career he chooses really determine his happiness? I don't seem to think so. I think that he just needed to trust his own instincts. Not just to do what he wanted, but what could have benefited him in the longer run.
Hi Elizabeth, I really enjoyed your post. It was really insightful and I completely agree on the fact that Myron should not meet the expectations of others.
One thing I would like to know is who said that quote? I really like it.
Overall, great post and keep it up!
I love your idea not to live by others expectations. Your comment for Rolle was brilliant. I agree we should have find a way to manage problems rather than giving something up completely. Great post!
As parents, it’s a job, a duty to push your kids in the right direction. Every parent tries to set their children on a course towards success. They enroll them in early afterschool programs, boy-scouts, piano classes and etc. The list goes on and on. Parents usually think that the right road to success is becoming a successful doctor/lawyer and that doing something like this would bring honor to your family.
Let’s just say my parents aren’t any different. They pushed me into sports, afterschool programs and used a huge amount of money to get me the prep I needed to succeed in school. My parents however, were different because they didn’t believe that I needed to be a doctor/lawyer. They believed that as long as I enjoyed what I did in my life that it was what really mattered.
When my mom was in her college years she used to work at a hair salon and she loved her job. It was a job that she enjoyed every day of and didn’t seem like work at all. It was the type of job she was able to spend the rest of her life doing.
However, one day she got married and had to move to America.
She abandoned the dream because she had to make a steady income for her family and she ended up being an accountant. It wasn’t something that she necessarily planned on doing, but it was something that she excelled at. It was a god-given talent because her organization skills were so great.
However, she didn’t enjoy the job. It wasn’t the type of work that made her happy nor was it the type of work that made her want to go to work every morning.
She didn’t care if she was more of a success at accounting if she wasn’t happy.
Her regret was that she didn’t continue trying to pursue her dream as a hair salonist.
It doesn’t matter if you excel at something, it doesn’t mean that it would make you happy. You only get to live on this earth once. So you should spent your time on it doing something you love and not just something that you’re good at.
Hey Kevin, I love your Blog, it was very enjoyable to read, very well done
I really enjoyed your last blog so I wanted to read what you wrote this time. I really like how your parents have the philosophy that it doesn't matter what you do as long as you're happy. I wish my parents were like that. They think that the only important thing about a job is making money, kind of what your mom had to do. I hope that I can pursue my dream career, and not have to stick with a job I'm good at but not passionate about, just because of money.
I really enjoyed reading your blog. I agree with you on how parents always enroll their children into activities to push us in the right direction.
I enjoyed reading your post!
I also agree on the point that we must be able to choose how we want to live the rest of our lives--after we do only live once.
hey kevin, I have similar parents to you. Mine also just tell me to pursue a career that I would be satisfied and happy with. I agree with you that it is important to choose a path based on the happiness it will give you rather than worldly wealth.
i love your post! and i like how your mom doesnt push you to do something that you dont like, i agree with you that enjoy what you like to do is important.
I can relate to you and your situation with your parents. Mine were the same way. Nice post bud.
Growing up, my parents made sure that I had plenty of opportunities to succeed. I was put in soccer, t-ball, gymnastics, swimming, girl scouts, and piano, all at a young age. I am very open to everything, so I happily obliged to all of them.
All of these activities are very different, but they all tie together with the fact that I never did any of them with the intention of succeeding; I did them purely for the fact to have fun.
Over the years, my extracurricular activities started to diminish. I quit gymnastics because I was too tired of having to wait for my turn just to do a backwards somersault. I quit swimming because I went up to the highest level that would allow me to swim without having to go to meets. I quit piano because although I did love playing, I didn’t like the fact that I had to practice an hour a day with songs that I wasn’t able to pick out for myself. I stopped being a girl scout because once my troop dwindled to a depressing four, we lost interest. I quit soccer because although I enjoyed the sport, my love for softball was greater.
I guess I didn’t have the spark in myself that pushed me to do greater things.
I have quit many things, but out of each and every one of them, I have gained life skills that I wouldn’t have other wise.
In gymnastics I learned how to control the movements of my body, in swimming, not only did I learn how to swim, but I learned how to do so in different styles in order to preserve my stamina, or to enjoy a hot day.
Just because I stopped taking lessons, doesn’t mean that I forgot how to play. I still play piano frequently. I will find sheet music online and I will teach myself how to play the piece. Piano has taught me patience. I still sometimes lack it, but by studying the sheet music and reading, learning, and playing each note to form a melody makes me slow down in life to take in a deep breath and appreciate the smaller things.
Being a Girl Scout has taught me the bond of friendship. Even though my troop was small, the four of us that stuck it out for that long became very close. It has taught me how to take charge and become a leader.
Soccer has taught me the importance of working together. It doesn’t matter how good you are individually, what matters is how well you work together.
Even though I might’ve quit or lost interest in many activities, I have still learned a lot from each of them. I don’t think success is only an accomplishment of ones goals. You can succeed by doing something entirely different than what was intentionally planned.
As long any action enhances you and shapes you into a better person, then you have succeeded.
Hey Arianna. I thought you had a really interesting perspective on success, and after thinking on it I think that you're right! I really loved all the personal examples. Great job!
I enjoyed reading this post that you posted. It's incredible how you learned so much from the activities that your parents signed you up in. I also really liked the last sentence in your post, I completely agree.
Hey Arianna, I agree on your ideas for success, we don't need to reach our goals, as long as we feel accomplished. You seem to have strengthened through team sports, I had the opposite feel when I played soccer, but as long as you are having fun anything is worth a shot.
I relate a lot to this post and agree completely. The more things you try the better off you are, no matter how good you actually end up being at them. One of my biggest regrets is not trying more things when I was younger, instead of just focusing on the few things that i was involved in.
There are times in our life where we wish we could look ahead in time to see what’s in store for us. At least, that’s probably what Myron Rolle is wishing. He could see what he chooses to focus on, and what the impact it will have on his life. He could see what the consequences would be of choosing a certain lifestyle. He could see if there *was*, eventually, an enough. But then again, he would also see if he was going to fail. He could see the catastrophic failure that he could turn out to be. That would be crushing to anyone, even Myron Rolle.
But if I was him; if I had all that talent, and those three decisions (going to the NFL, focusing on school, or trying to do both), I would definitely want to see what lay ahead of me. Even though I would risk seeing myself choose something that may not make me happy, I would still want to see what I had ultimately decided, so that when the time came to actually make the decision, it wouldn’t be as hard. I would be able to try and defy my future, if it wasn’t a good one, and choose another path, or I would be able to choose the same path as the one I saw in my future and try my best at it, hoping that it would make me happy in the end.
Unfortunately, Myron Rolle is not able to see into his future to see the decision he will make, even if he wants to. No matter how nervous or scared someone may be about Myron’s future, Myron is undoubtedly more nervous and scared. It’s his life that he is going to have to live, his future that he will have to deal with, and in the end, his feelings of regret that he may or may not have to put up with. Of course, the decision is not entirely up to him. He can’t draft himself. And I doubt that anyone who is looking for a player to draft is going to enroll someone with that much at stake, no matter what potential they may have. As the saying goes, better safe than sorry.
Hey Paul, I found your blog pretty similar to mine and really agree with the way you responded. Very well done keep up the good work.
Hey Paul, I liked the question you picked to respond. I agree with you that any person would love to know the future, considering how much talent Myron has.
I just thought your blog was different than the other ones I have read.
Anyways great job and keep it up
What is enough ? When does one truly understand – when does one even know – that they are content? When does one know, that what they have is enough?
It was in eighth grade when I thought I had it all. I was on the school basketball team, part of a club basketball team, part of the drama production, captain of the flag team, part of the dance team, in student council, part of HELP club, and in cooking club. But even though I was apart of so many amazing activities that year, I still wanted more. I still wanted to be in even more clubs, to hold more leadership positions, to do extracurricular activities outside of school. Nothing was ever enough.
I believe that one feels content when they are satisfied, fulfilled.
In my situation and Myron Rolle's situation, we wanted everything, but it's simply impossible. We have so many passions that we want to pursue; we end up spreading ourselves too thin. We end up getting fifty percent out of every activity, simply because we have too much on our plate.
It was a blessing to have all the opportunities and to be apart of all those activities in eighth grade, it really was. But that feeling of never having enough, of not getting everything you want, is almost a tease, a curse. You never feel content. You never feel satisfied. You never feel happy.
One never feels like they have enough, because they want too much.
I think Myron Rolle will have to choose between the two passions in his life, for his own good and for the good of the people involved. I know from experience that one can never be fully dedicated to something if they have too much on their plate.
I was scared to read the update. I thought for sure Myron Rolle was going to get injured and lose his change at, well, everything.
From reading about Myron Rolle, I got a sense of how ambitious he was. So, when he decided to risk everything to pursue a career in the NFL, I wasn't surprised. But to be honest, I was happy that he never played. And even though he may think otherwise, I think that what happened to him was best. I think that there is more waiting for him as a scholar, as a politician, as a neurosurgeon. Those things would lead to a lifetime of accomplishments, memories. Sure, the NFL might be glamorous for those years you are apart of it, but what happens after?
The NFL is an amazing thing, but like I said earlier, if one is spread too thin, they will only get as much as they put in. Since Myron Rolle was so busy about other things, he was only able to put fifty percent of his abilities into the NFL, hence he got fifty percent out of it. Now I'm glad he was focus on school. he can be a scholar, a doctor, anything really. I'm excited to see the place he'll go...
I liked your line: "if one is spread too thin, they will only get as much as they put in. " To me, it pretty much negates the "gray area" in this argument. He has to make a choice. I don't believe that he will reach his true potential in either of his career choices if he doesn't fully devote himself to one, and one only. I liked the choice he ended up making, because i think he will go much farther in life outside of football.
Hey Holly! I really enjoyed your blog post! I liked how you bolded "One never feels like they have enough, because they want too much" because there are people in the world who do things that don't actually make themselves feel satisfied. Also, I liked your reaction to the updated post about what happened to Myron because that's exactly what i thought in my head. Good Job!
This was near the end of first semester of junior year. Final examinations had been closing in on all the students, and many of them had borderline grades. Some people only had one class with that situation. I, on the other hand, had not one, not two, not three of those kinds of classes.
One of those classes was U.S. History. This was the class I gave up on, since it was my weakest subject. Then there was English and computer science. Even though many others insisted that computer science was complicated, I’ve always had an easy time with it. Before the final examination, my grades in those classes were both B+. The finals were all I have left to raise those grades, and I knew that I had to study English over computer science. The final for English consisted of questions from two books, and I spent the entire night reading both books over and going over in-class notes along with Sparknotes. I didn’t sleep the entire night, and the following day, I was absolutely ready for the test.
During the test, I answered most questions pretty confidently. I knew, however, that I needed at least a 97% on it to receive an A- in the class. The process was nerve-wrecking, and I couldn’t help but think that I didn’t meet the minimum requirement for an A-. The next period was, of course, computer science. I only had a B+ grade in that class because I never did my homework. I took the test with relative ease, but during all that time, there was only one thing in my mind: how my English test went.
The results came out on PowerSchool at the end of the day, and I received a 95% on my English final. That was only good enough to raise my grade by one percent to 89%. I was successful in getting an A in computer science though, but I felt no joy that afternoon. I went home, sulking in my bed with the thought of not accomplishing what I had originally set out to do, even with an A in some other class. Sure, I got an A in computer science class. Sure, I scored really high on my English final. There was only one problem.
They were not the results I wanted the most.
I really liked your blog, probably because it was so relatable. I remember freshman year when I was in the same position. I had an 88% in my geometry honors class and I needed that final to boost my grade to an A. I studied all night and I thought for sure I had a chance to get that A. But when I got my report card a couple weeks later, I saw that I still had a B+. It sucked because I tried to hard to get that A, but I just couldn't reach my goal.
World Literature – Period 3
24 March 2013
All Quiet on the Western Front Blog: Waiting to Panic, Vexed and Glorious as Ever
If I am successful in ways I did not intend to be successful, I would still celebrate for it because all success are same important to me. Although my goals might not be achieved, my new success matters as same as my dreams. I believe as I become successful in any ways, other people in this world can be benefited, so compare to the good of society, my personal goals seem less significant. I think Myron Rolle is gifted for a reason; he has the power and talents to change this world and achieve other people’s dreams, so it’s his duty to realize other people’s hope and dreams about him. Rolle lives a life of constant challenge because he is special; he is destined to be a hero, a great man of our time, so he has to sacrifice some of his own freedom and dreams for the interest of people who love and trust him. His talents are a blessing from God, and God want him to use this gift to benefit the world; I see it as an honor rather than a curse.
If I am the manager of football team, I will draft Myron Rolle because he has dream, passion, and talent, and I believe he will do his best. I think Rolle is in a similar situation that many other prodigies have. They are talented, so their parents, neighbors, or friends want them to be successful in the ways they don’t want. Other people’s expectations pressure them and force them to give up on their dreams, and it often lead to depressions because they are not truly happy about what they do. If I am the team manager and give Rolle a chance, he can freely express his feeling and release his potential; he will be happy because his feeling can be fulfilled.
People like Myron Rolle have the talents and intelligence that most people don’t have. Their abilities are the treasure of humanity, so we should encourage them to choose the fate that can make a bright future for themselves and our world. If Rolle has the extraordinary power and talent to impress the world, I think it’s his duty to do something; it might not be his own will; it might make him unfulfilled as a person, but it’s his destiny. I would not treat Rolle the way I prefer to be raised because I am just a normal kid compare to him, but he is the rising star, the future of our world. I would like to see him doing different things, and I believe he can always be successful if he listens to other people’s suggestions. I don’t want him to take the risk of losing all the opportunities and wasting the talents he has.
We don’t have the right to demand Myron, but he has the responsibility to use his talents for unselfish things. He has the right to choose the way he wants to live, but it would be very disappointing if he can’t maximize his exceptional gifts. He has the opportunity to be a hero or even some great man like Martin Luther King Jr., so it’s a waste of gifted talents if he chooses to follow his own goal, a decision that may have a very bad outcome. I respect his own decision even though I don’t recommend it.
There is no enough.
The only way Myron Rolle will be able to revel in his success is if he makes the choice that he wants to make. You have to live with every decision you make, and you own up to the responding consequences. Rolle’s ambitions have paved the way for his promising opportunities. He is blessed, but his circumstances suck. His talent has caused him to become a representation, or role model, of the future of young African-American citizens. I can only imagine the amount of weight that this young man has to carry on his shoulders. Looking upon his circumstances, it made me ask myself two things:
Is he not ready to take on the world?
Or is the world just not ready for someone like him?
His life’s work has provided him with the spoils of many men’s dreams. Unfortunately, he’s been placed in a situation that will ultimately cost him something. He’s choosing between his dreams and an enticing career that may not give him what he is looking for. As of this point in his life, this fork in the road that he has reached, he is at a disadvantage. He won’t get to enjoy his success until he figures out where he wants it to go. To put it simply:
Myron Rolle is going to have to roll the dice.
He’s going to have to take a chance on something that might not pan out for him.
Myron Rolle is not cursed. His circumstances could be better, but he is blessed to even be in this situation. Rolle is extremely gifted, both intellectually and physically. He needs to take a chance on something, or else he will have wasted his true potential. Who knows how good of an NFL player he will become? On the flip side, maybe he accepts the offer to become the leader of a free nation (the Bahamas).
He has to take a chance, because he doesn’t realize how far his potential may actually take him.
I really liked your piece. I could really hear your voice, and it flows really well. The thing I liked most was your 2nd line. I totally agree when you said that the only thing that would truly make him happy is if he chooses what he wants.
Life is all about making choices. Sometimes we make good choices. Sometimes we make bad choices. What ever decisions we make, we have to think about how they will effect us and our lives.
Myron Rolle has a decision to make. Either to become a linebacker in the NFL, or become a neurosurgeon. He has to choose one. There’s no possible way for him to do both. If Rolle is looking for success, he sure won’t achieve it by doing both. There’s just no way. The careers are just so different and they don’t compliment each other in anyway. What ever he decides to do, he will have to sacrifice something. His options are as follows; either he fully dedicates himself to becoming a full time neurosurgeon, thus resulting in him not playing football, or he fully immerses himself in the NFL and has a successful career as a linebacker rather than a brain doctor. It’s clear that if Rolle is looking to have any success in his life, he will choose only one of these careers, not both.
I know of some people who are in this type of situation, and I am even finding myself to be sort of in the same boat. As many people already know, being apart of the advanced drama department is a rigorous task that takes up a lot of your time. If you choose to do A.D.D it’s pretty much impossible to do anything else. In the past, Some of my friends have made the decision to do ADD and a sport. Both, activities of which require a lot of practice time. I have a friend (which by the way, if you are reading this you know who you are, and don’t take this too offense, because I’m not judging you! I am just using you as an example) who is in my theater class, but is also apart of a sport. It’s been very difficult for this person to fully dedicate them selves to one program and as a result has suffered some playing time, and rehearsal time. it’s been very stressful for them and they’ve managed to successful in participated in both, but as a result from not being able to immerse themselves fully and dedicate all their time to one program, they have had to sacrifice a lot.
I’m pretty sure this person has decided to continue in life rather than theater, but from time to time, they find themselves conflicted and unsure of which choice to make.
It’s difficult for someone to know which decision is the best and what choice will benefit them the most. Which one will they be more successful at? Which one do they want to do more? Which one are they willing to sacrifice?
Life is full of decisions and choices. We have all at some point in our lives found our selves to be conflicted and in need of a decision. Just like my friend has a choice to make, Myron Rolle has one too.
I think you brought up a really good point about how if someone tries to do two equally needy things, they won't be able to invest themselves completely into either of them. I sometimes forget how hectic other people's lives can be when focusing on my own, so thanks for sharing your friend's dilemmas as well as your own as examples!
Hi Kristina, I really enjoyed your post and I can most definitely say that I can not agree with you more. People will have to make decisions in life and pick one or the other. We'd all be lying if we said that we were able to be at two completely different places at one. Well done!
I really enjoyed reading your blog. I liked how you talked about how everyone has choices to make and its up to them to decide which path to take.
If there is time to reflect, slowing down is likely to be a good idea. - Daniel Kahneman
Slow down and enjoy life. It's not only the scenery you miss by going to fast-you also miss the sense of where you are going and why. - Eddie Cantor
Slow down you're doing fine
You can't be everything you want to be
Before your time.
Billy Joel Vienna
Joel definitely hit what I was thinking when I read about Myron. In fact, Joel hit it spot on. You simply cannot be everything everyone wishes you to be. In simpler terms, you can’t play God, and even God struggles sometimes on this “rock we live on.” In Myron shoes, he is a subject, a vessel, and a carrier of all of society’s hopes and dreams. He is a superstar, which means he is a hamster running on a wheel until the wheel breaks or he gives out, one before the other.
It is only a matter of time before we burn Myron out.
The everlasting wheel of demand from the general public is something that, definitely, is “chosen since birth.” We always wish to become astronauts and presidents and other great things, but only a few can reach such goals. I don’t know if it is how people are or how natural selection works, but to witness someone else reach for those goals, those impossible feats to some, is like a drug; we want it, badly. We know we can’t be Myron, but we sure as hell wish to be. So, we expect him to do what we would have; we expect him to do what we want to do. That, my friends, is a sickness that we people have.
Give the guy a break.
We’ve heard of this term all the time, yet we don’t apply that to Myron. The guy deserves a break. Knowing that the world watches his every step, and wishes to change them in some “ideal” way, Myron will burn out. Once he burns out, what will he be? He will be the burnout, the have-been, the history that we had so much hope in, and the one that we lost hope in. We will disregard him like gum, full of flavor and stale at the end.
Let the gum remain flavorful.
Let Myron decide what he wishes to do. Let him consider his own future, and please, for God’s and Myron’s sake, stop putting up expectations. We have no right to restrict what another person should do. We’re not him; we’re not Myron; we’re not perfect, and we shouldn’t be. We know he will fail, so isn’t it time to stop telling Myron what to think and feel. It’s time we gave ourselves a break and stop hoping to be something we’re not.
Let The Gum Remain Flavorful just replaced Let The Circle Be Unbroken as the slogan of my life. I can't wait to see that in a blog title someday.
I think Myron's gum is losing its flavor, but not under the stresses placed upon him by others. Anyone who truly cares about Myron will be happy simply to see him happy. The stress he's feeling comes from within.
Hey David, I like the points you brought like giving him a break, professional athletes are under constant pressure and the public is always judging them(one reason why I would never want to be a professional athlete). I also really like how you compared him to gum and how we don't like it once it looses flavor.
Myron Rolle’s situation fascinates me. The conundrum of having too much talent, at first, seems like a great problem to have. However, as I thought more and more, I realized the overwhelming pressures that society places on him. The weight of this pressure is crushing and unfair. This leads me to ask: what right does society have to place these burdens and expectations on Rolle? Rolle is just a man, perhaps filled with an unusual amount talent, but nonetheless a man. So I say let him be. Rolle is in charge of his own life, so he is free to choose which goals to pursue because the NFL or neuroscience are both worthy goals in their own respect.
It is unreasonable to expect Rolle to be able to satisfy all of society. Someone somewhere will be unsatisfied, but that’s just how things go. On the other hand, whatever Rolle decides to pursue will make a lot of people, and more importantly himself, happy. I think that this is what Rolle should primarily focus on, his happiness and living in the present. Worrying about the future will only serve to ruin the moment. This is where the feeling of unfulfillment stems from because you are unable to fully enjoy the present.
I wish Rolle the best, in whichever path he pursues. I hope he commits himself fully to whatever that path is and succeeds. And if God or fate wills, maybe he’ll be lucky enough to achieve his other aspirations in the future. But for now, live in the moment and do your best.
God treats everyone unfairly. People are born with a fixed tag on their necks: race, gender, family background, appearance, talents, etc. Not one person on the whole planet is exactly the same. Those who are born with special talents or extraordinary backgrounds enjoy the privilege of choices. Just like Myron Rolle, those people have the capability to choose the types of life they want to live in, for they have all the talent to excel in everything they do, as long as they want to.
From an outside point of view, people like Rolle are probably the most blessed people in the world. Their talents blessed by god, enabling them to be free to choose their future path with thousands of different possibilities. People are jealous of their talents, treating them with full admiration. However, as perspective changes, the same issue might seem completely different.
On the outside, some people might think that being relied on in society is a honorable thing. However, those who have the talent to do whatever they want are constantly struggling with a huge amount of expectation from the outside, for they are the "blessed ones," having the obligation to contribute to society because of their exceptional abilities. Their lives are always accompanied by a huge amount of pressure from the outside world, with demands and expectations unconditionally forced upon them. Decisions they make might not necessarily be their own choices, but merely the expectations of others.
For me personally, I am currently facing a rather similar situation. My parents, especially my father, possess a high expectation in me. When I was merely a little child, my father has already been investing in me. His hopes and expectations are immeasurable. Harvard, Yale, Stanford, etc. are all the colleges he expects me to study in. I have tried my best to meet his expectations: taking countless hours of after-school tutoring, spending the whole summer vacation practicing SAT testing, sparing almost all of my free time for studying. However, there are always times when reality fails to meet the expectations. With college admission and rejection letters on the way, I realize the limit to my capability, and the cruelty of the reality.
Looking back, I have always been struggling to meet my father's expectations for me, for I was not living a life myself, but rather living in a life created by someone else. I might not be a talented person, but I have already started to understand the difficulties of living a life that does not belong to myself.
If talents take away the freedom of living one's own life, it becomes a curse.
I think a lot of people, including me, can relate to bitter realities. But hopefully the painful lessons were necessary, in order to finally realize how to live and enjoy life in spite of pressures.
My parents are always on my case about finalizing my career aspirations, and I don't blame them for it because I've been confused and fickle for a while. I had changed my mind many times. I wanted to pick a career that would prove myself as something more than a waste. I wanted to be a better person through my career. I believe in God but at the time, I was afraid to put my faith into God's plans for me. I wanted to finalize everything myself, deciding myself what God's will for my life would be without knowing His design at all. I picked a career which I could look at and say, "Well God doesn't NOT approve of this occupation...It helps people... I would be suffering for people", so I thought being an infectious disease doctor without borders would be a good career choice. I could be those doctors traveling to war zones or disaster victims in the Middle East, Africa, and South America to treat diseases of people who had no way of affording it. I say suffer because I really dislike science. My dislike of it intensified after AP Bio consumed my sophomore year. I worked really hard in that class and I hated every minute of it. I actually made a point to forget everything I learned because I hated knowing some of the stuff I found out, even. Some biological things were too graphic for me to be comfortable with remembering. I also hate being a student and medical school and residency would force me to be a student for about 12 years including college. I also didn't have the heart of a doctor. What attracted to me most to the career was that it wasn't a waste. It wasn't a waste of a career or a waste of a life. It was a career that nobody could say "didn't help anyone". My ultimate motivator in becoming a doctor was not a desire to help people, but a desire to become a better person that used her life for something of worth. When I say of worth though, I mean something that I could convince myself was just as good as whatever God's plan for me might be, even if it wasn't a good fit for my personal talents. Even if I had to struggle in this career versus another career that I could excel in because I had no idea what God's will was. I wanted to decide God's will for my life because of my fear of not knowing what He has in store for me. I made up my mind stubbornly to become a doctor. My mom and dad told me if I was going to be a doctor, I had to decide that it was what I really wanted and then go for it one hundred percent. My mom told me of her friend's daughter who suddenly decided to be a doctor after receiving a bachelor's in Psychology without any of the requirements to get into Medical School. She had to go back to college to get all of her requirements done and suffered a schedule full of difficult classes without any electives to alleviate her. She also paid an excessive amount of money because of her indecision.
My mother is a microbiologist at Cedar Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles. She's bonded with the same co-workers for over 15 years and I've learned a lot about people through the stories she's recounted about her friends. Another friend she mentioned was Richard.
Since Richard was little, he had always loved the piano. He played the scales over and over so much that his family would yell at him to stop practicing. Despite his family's annoyances, he believed he was gifted and that he had the ability to touch people through his music. His dream was to become a musician. Aside from being musically talented, he was very intelligent especially when it came to science so it was not a surprise to his family when he showed interest in becoming a doctor. It was not unexpected that he was conflicted about his potential career: Did he want to pursue his life long dream of being a musician or his other goal of being a doctor? He finally settled on the side of doctor when his brother told him that as a doctor, he could afford a steinway piano to play on. Yet after his college graduation, he was diverted from medical school and got involved in a field of work he hadn't considered: clinical laboratory science. His girlfriend had introduced him to the career and he gave it a shot. He started out as a laboratory assistant- a job that paid little and had few requirements, but one that he liked. Eventually, he wanted to go to medical school, but found that it'd be too difficult compared to if he had followed the traditional path of a doctor, going to medical school directly after college. He did not attempt to become a musician either but instead, focused on his lab science work. He is now one of the best leaders of clinical scientists at Cedar Sinai.
When I first heard of this man Richard i thought it was sad because he achieved neither of his dreams. I thought of how unfulfilled he must feel. I asked my mother if he wanted to be a doctor still and if he regretted his decision of focusing on medical school or if he regretted not trying to be a musician after deciding going to medical school was too difficult for his situation. She said that he was happy with his job and never expressed any more desire to become a doctor. He plays piano in the lobby of Cedar Sinai for free just as a hobby when there is down time. I asked her what it was that kept him from going to medical school and she said that he didn't digress but only said that it was too hard compared to if he had pursued it right away. .She also described him multi talented- excelling at computers, music, and math and as extremely motivated so it wouldn't be surprising if he decided to do more aside from his current job.
Richard hadn't intended ever to become a lab scientist- and he wasn't even serious about the job at first, it was just something he had a passion for. But he decided not to go back to his old goal. His reason for not going to medical school was not compelling. The importance he placed on his old goal was not very great. He was flexible and content with going down the path that he ended up in. But his new path lead him to success. He was able to put his efforts into the current path he was on instead of pursuing an old dream. He was able to be happy with his new success instead of dwelling on his unrealized dream.
I used to try to take control, really commit to all my goals, but I admit that I do not know what is best for me. I don't know if I'll be the best as a journalist or a doctor or whatever- I do not know the best fit for myself. I trust that the destiny God has in store for me is far greater than any goal I can envision for myself and more fitting for me than any other dream I could pursue
Your new successes are more important than the dreams you never realized. Sense of fulfillment ought to come with any success- be it planned or unplanned. I don't believe in total control of life. I don't believe in narrowing yourself and your happiness to your own plans. I will trust in God's plan for me and I'll be happy with where God takes me, whatever His purpose is for my life.
“Who are you living for?”
While Rolle was at his crossroads, that is the question I would've liked to ask him. When he saw the Facebook post comparing him to the Bahamian president or picked up that phone call from Rev. Jesse Jackson, he saw that others held him up on a pedestal and what they expected of him. But those expectations aren't him. Nowhere did he state an interest in politics or civil activism. That is what society wants, expects even, of Rolle. But not who he is.
“Aww, look, love! She’s a girl. What a lovely member of society she’ll be.” -Said no parent ever (hopefully)
We shouldn’t measure the value of one’s life by their contributions to society. If we all borrow from society, we should all have to pay back the basics: Refraining from stealing, cheating and murdering; tolerating, respecting, and loving our neighbors. Why must our sole interest be to pay back society, with interest? Adding to society is a good thing, but it needs sincerity and passion to power it. It needs to be a personal choice, because society is like a huge well-oiled machine. If our only use in life is to keep it running, like a gear among countless others, we would be pulled out, replaced and disposed of instantly if we didn’t fulfill our job. We aren’t machines, with machine hearts and machine minds. We are men. Viewing people sole as small pieces of society is practical and easy, but soulless.
“Aww, look, love! She’s a girl and she has your eyes.”
Instead society should look down proudly upon its inhabitants, seeing all the good it has passed down onto them in order to deal him and her the best possible cards in life, and acknowledge the personal dreams and hopes he and she has.
And in terms of cards in life, there’s little question that Rolle has been dealt a great hand. Not only does he have good cards, but he has the great set-up, with many options that countless others dream to have just one of.
Which should he play on?
He should play on his dreams.
Which should he play on?
NFL? Neurosurgeon? Both?
When smashing helmets together in the entertaining spectacle known as American Football, NFL teams don’t care whether the heads belong to nuclear physicists or the average pot-bellied pub-dweller, as long as they gain yards and score points while the other team doesn’t. As long as the body is able, then the player will play. As long as the player is the best, then he will play with the best. And that’s the problem: the body will deprecate far faster with the combined forces of age (competing against the freshest, newest recruits every year) and physics (270 or so pounds of muscle frequently crashing against the body at various angles for years). The player and his body will not stay the best for long. And when the player and his body are not the best, they are cast out, just like a worn gear in a well oiled machine that must keep running.
At best, a long career would be around a decade.
At worst, a career-ending injury within the first practices or games.
At worst, a blow to the head or spine that leaves irreparable physical or mental damage.
At worst, the damage would mean his career in the NFL would be the highlight of his life.
Of all the cards in his hand, a future of football is the shortest-lived and riskiest one. The one indifferent to any of his other talents. The one with, by far, the greatest prospect of harming those other talents.
Compared to the body, the mind is generally exposed to far less straining conditions. Rolles owns a talented mind, coupled with ambition. It can mean a full 40 year career in medicine. It can mean the capability to fulfill that dream of a clinic in his hometown. It can mean he can still take up his other passions and dreams, including or not the ones that others expect of him. It can mean a far more secure route that uses his talents to reach for his dreams, in order to attain the accolades and happiness that others assume he is destined for.
I hope he made the right choice.
Hey Matt. I admire your statements on not measuring a person's worth by how much they can contribute to society. I also did like how you went and articulated each outcome of Rolle's choices. Good job!
I didn't agree with your point initially but was definitely persuaded into reconsidering how I view things after reading your blog. I had thought that we owe ourselves and our lives to promote goodness but after reading your blog, I agree that sincerity is a must in what you decided to live for- I struggle with this myself. I have a hard time to WANT to do good versus just doing good because i know I owe it.
Something . Anything . Everything . Nothing .
To the reader, I know this is extremely long, and you'll probably just glance right over it (I know, I do it too) but please don't. I put a lot of work into this, and reason I answered every question was because I hoped to put something in their for everyone. So don't read the whole thing. Goodness...even I don't want to. Just pick a piece that looks interesting, and read that. Thanks!
“You don’t think he’s…kind of…living through us?”
“What d’you mean, ‘living through us’?” Harry retorted?
“I think he’s really frustrated at how little he can do where he is…so I think he’s keen to kind of…egg us on.”
- Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
We’re all unique.
Looking at the glass half full, we all have our own talents that separate us, that make us different. Looking at the glass half empty, we all have our weaknesses. No matter how much natural skill we have, no matter how much effort we put into training, it’ll never be enough. There will always be someone better at something.
No one gets to be the best at everything.
So when we have the talent, when we have the abilities, there will always be those who want to live through us. To do for them, what they simply cannot. They live through us.
They’re the ones living, not us. Their dreams. Not ours.
“Someday, the Krabby Patter formula will be mine! Even if I have to come back tomorrow! And the next day…and the next day…and the next day…and the next day…”
There’s always gonna be someone waiting around the corner.
Covet. The yearning to possess something you don’t have. Since we don’t live in a communist country, no one is exactly like you. Everyone starts at a different place, and depending on God, skill, or dumb luck, we all end up somewhere different. And there will always be someone who wants to be where you are- where I am. I envy Myron Rolle and all the gifts he has. I want to be where he is. But I too, don’t envy Myron Rolle.
Because everyone envies Myron Rolle.
Everyone wants what he has, what he can be, what he can do. And what he gives, what he becomes, and what he does…will never be enough. Though he will be showered in fame and love for his successes, he will be drenched in infamy and fame for all his failures. He’ll never satisfy them all.
He’ll forever be a blessing to world, but we, the world, will forever be a curse to him.
In 1996, Kobe Bryant was drafted 13th overall in the NBA draft by the Charlotte Hornets, but was immediately traded to the Lakers. The Hornets didn’t want him. Head Scout Bill “Branch said that prior to the trade agreement, the Hornets never even considered drafting Bryant.” They wanted proven center Vlade Divac. To this day, the Hornets still regret that move, and will forever be remembered as the ones that let Kobe Bryant walk away. Basketball fans will always remember the 13th pick of the 1996 NBA draft.
In NBA history, dozens of bad moves have been made. The Wizards drafting Kwame Brown number one. The Blazers picking Greg Oden over Kevin Durant. The list goes on. But we only see those as bad moves. A hit and miss. But we remember Kobe’s draft, because it wasn’t a hit and miss. It was a never even tried. Failures come and go, because we can always try try again. But opportunities not taken, are opportunities missed. So I’d go for it because-
I’d rather hit and miss, then live in infamy, for never even swinging.
“War is hell.”
- William Tecumseh Sherman
“Only the dead have seen the end of the war.”
- George Santayana
Paul will never truly be at peace again. In the midst of the war, he sees the true horror of humanity. Amidst the filth and pungent scents of the trenches, his humanity is thrown out the window. Men become animals, fighting viciously, doing anything…anything…to survive.
How can he ever truly be happy, when he’s seen something so truly sad?
Worse though. Myron Rolle will never truly find happiness either.
“To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift.”
- Steve Prefontaine
Myron Rolle is gifted. He is blessed beyond all reason. He can be anything. But people want him to be everything. A NFL player. A neurosurgeon. The president of a nation in need. They want him to be the Myron Rolle they see. And until he’s everything, he’ll never truly be happy.
But who can be everything?
“Always remember that you are absolultely unique. Just like everyone else.”
- Margaret Mead
You get your chance. So why shouldn’t he?
Yes Myron Rolle is special. He has the gifts, the power to be anything, and do everything. But in the end, he is Myron Rolle. And you are you. He has the choice to do what he wants with the unique gifts he has. And so do you. So stop looking at what he can do, and start thinking of what you can do. What makes you special? What makes you different?
“However one defines a man, the same definition applies to all of us.”
- Marcus Cicero
In the end, Myron Rolle is just another man. So treat him like one. Let him be the best at what he chooses to be.
Treat him how you’d treat yourself. Let him be.
“We love to expect, and when expectation is either disappointed or gratified, we want to be again expecting”
- Samuel Johnson
And we’ll forever expect more.
In the end, what Myron Rolle chooses to do, is up to no one but himself. And what Paul Baumer chooses to do in the battlefield, is also up to no one but himself. What sets humanity apart from the other creatures of the world is that we can think for ourselves. Act for ourselves. All of these expectations, all that we ask of these two men, no matter how different they are, it comes down to the same thing. We can ask away. Demand more. Beg for more. Threaten them to be more, give more. But in the end, whether it’s at home contemplating the NFL or College, or in the midst of the chaos we call war, we have to ask them this:
What are you willing to do?
“It’s a risk.”
“It’s war,” he replied. “The trick is to know which risks to take.”
“And how do you know that?” Boras asked.
“You wait till it’s over and see who’s won,” he said. “Then you know those were the right risks to take.”
- Ranger’s Apprentice, The Battle for Skandia
You’ll never know till it’s done.
In war, there are hundreds of factors determining who wins. The number of soldiers. The amount of ammunition. The weather. And life is much the same. It’s a battle every day to do what you want to do; to accomplish what you set in mind. Myron and Paul are both fighting battles. They’re fighting day in and day out to survive. Myron fights to keep himself, his identity alive. He fights to keep those who want to make him theirs at bay. Paul fights to preserve his life. He fights to fend off those who just to see him die, so that he won’t be the one dying. They both made choices, and I think it’s worth the risk, because for both of them, at some point, they thought it was worth it too. Something convinced them that this was worth losing everything for.
So fight on. Keep fighting for what you believe in.
And I don’t want to see the future. Because it wouldn’t change a thing. It wouldn’t change the fact that both these men should just fight with everything they have. To keep striving for their futures. Then no matter the outcome, success of failure, they’ll know:
They gave it their all.
They gave it their all in hopes of being something .
They had faith and didn’t hold back anything .
They knew the risk, but or their dreams, threw down everything .
And they’ll regret nothing .
Rarely does anyone put in as much effort as you do on these blogs. Wonderful answers, especially the one regarding "swinging and missing." I guess I will have to learn to muster up the courage to step up to the plate.
Independence is in my opinion, one of the most important qualities that you should obtain. Where are you going to be in life without being independent and solo? Are you going to live and follow by your parents’ rules and demands on a daily basis when you’re say, twenty-five years old, as an adult? Are you going to do everything that other people tell you to do, and make all of the decisions that they want you to choose in life? Are you going to let them control your life?
I’ve always had the simplest mind form that anybody could ever have. I let people walk all over be like a dirty rag on the floor. I let people control my life and let them decide on what I wanted to do, like I was a five year old boy playing with his Hot Wheels race car with the controller that came with the toy. Like a dirty rag being dragged around in the kitchen and a Hot Wheels race car being controlled, they are both just an item. They both end up to be worthless in the end. The dirty rag wasn’t always a dirty rag, it was once clean. The Hot Wheels race car isn’t going to stay important in the young boy’s life, since it’s so fragile, it will break and just become another toy that he’s played with and dumped back into his toy chest. This was me.
As I started to associate myself with new people in my junior year of high school, I was touched. I saw so much more in myself than I have ever seen before. I believed in myself that I was strong enough to stand up for myself, strong enough to make my own decisions, and strong enough to decide what I want to do and what I feel is right. I was finally strong enough to be truly happy.
Like Myron Rolle, he was independent. He had the opportunity to have a successful career in being in the medical field of being a neuroscientist, or in the athletic department in becoming a NFL player. He made the decision in continuing his future as being a NFL player. Nothing mattered as long as he was happy with the choice he made. Nobody should pressure anybody in becoming something or doing something that they don’t want to. Being a football player was solely his decision, and his decision only.
As long as you are happy yourself, nothing else and nobody else should even matter.
Hi Evelyn! I definitely can agree with your post because who wants to still be following our parents rules when we're 25? I'd definitely want to be able to make my own decisions and not have others control my life. Good job and well done.
There will a point in our lives where we have to make a decision. Be it choosing from a bowl of teriyaki chicken or a bowl of beef curry, a greasy burger from in n' out or a healthy green salad, a cheesecake from The Cheesecake factory, or a pizookie from B'J's Restaurant, whatever.
Why not both? Because there will be too much on our plate.
Myron Rolle had to choose between what he was good at and what he loved.
Why strive for something you're good at over something you've wanted since the day you were able to walk? Are you going to be happy in the long run? Or are you going to be successful?
Since I was little, my family has put me in so many things that I can even remember. Piano, violin, swimming, chinese, and tae-kwon-do lessons.
I went to the classes and did exactly what I was supposed to do. Back then, I always had a lot of free time on my hands and they'd ask me why I never practiced at home when I had the chance. And the weird thing was... not once did I fail a test those classes gave every week or every couple of months, even though I never practiced.
Don't get me wrong, I definitely don't hate playing the violin and piano or studying chinese... my heart was just never really there when it came to it.
They told me that it will benefit me in the long run, and I know that, but that statement literally went in through one ear and out the other. I can't say I was never happy or content, but I can't say that I was either. Those days practically consisted of going to class for however long, and going home with a little bit more knowledge. But still, my heart was never really there.
My heart was at volleyball. I wanted to play volleyball afterschool even if it took me away from piano, violin, and chinese lessons. I certainly had no problem with it because I wanted it.
So I made a choice. I stopped taking piano lessons. I stopped taking violin lessons, I stopped taking chinese lessons. Those were like easy A “classes” because there was little to no studying at all. but it wasn't what I wanted. I made a decision. I chose volleyball even though I knew I wasn't as good as some of the players on the team, but I loved playing the game and I knew there was so much more room for improvement. I've made my choice. Myron Rolle did too.
Growing up I always had my parents pushing me learn new things or to do better in things I’m currently decent at. They would always try to push me in what they believe was the right direction to a better future.
As I grew up I was put in many classes outside of school like piano classes and after school programs to improve in school. It benefited me in a way that I would learn something new every time. The only problem was that I didn't enjoy any of them except guitar lessons.
Being successful in ways you didn't intend would just mean that you have natural talent. You have the ability and skills to accomplish tasks at hand. It doesn't mean much though if you don’t have any interest in it. Accomplishing and being successful in something you set as a goal would have a bigger impact.
When I was thirteen my dad was had been an accountant for five years already. My parents wanted me and my little brother to have a better education and future so they planned to move to Arcadia. My parents had a big problem since they didn't have enough money or they had barely enough to support the family when we moved to Arcadia. My dad really enjoyed his job as an accountant because he had good hours that would allow him to spend time with my family.
After we moved to Arcadia my dad made his own company and had a partnership with my uncle. He’s t he boss of the company which was a lot harder than his previous job as an accountant. He doesn't enjoy his job as much but he still manages to give us a better education and a better future.
Meeting a goal or a dream would be great but you have to think about making sacrifices. You have to think about your surroundings like family and loved ones. Although you may have successfully achieved your dream or goal, it wouldn't be worth it if it had a negative effect to everyone around you other than yourself.
You are completely right when you say that successfully achieving a dream wouldn't be worth it if it had negative effects to others. As humans, we can be pretty selfish when it comes to benefits, and therefore, it is up to us to decide if we want to benefit ourselves, or others as well. Thanks for sharing your personal story about your dad!
At the end of the story, I immediately thought about the identity and the independence point of the star. Rolle and his happiness should come before everyone else's and society. Rolle should have done whatever was possible to bring the identity and independence point closer to him. Thinking about Rolle's star really makes me think about mine again.
It's always really stressful when my family talks about the future, or more of my future. My plans for after high school was to always to get out of this San Gabriel Valley area. But my dad thinks differently so cut down my options for any out of state colleges. At first, I thought that it wasn't so bad, I mean I could go somewhere up North of California and I would be okay with that. But then now he says that he prefers for me to stay within a 1-2 hour distance, even if it takes me to go to community college. I know I wouldn't be happy. But would it be wrong for me to go against what he wants? Especially if I know that being able to leave this area would allow me to bring the identity and independence point closer to me.
It's a no brainer that there will be sacrifices that we all are eventually going to have to make but when it comes down to it, should we put other people's happiness above ours? Is it worth making the sacrifice if it's for our loved ones? (Think Letter E)
We all have our talents and strong suits. We all have our on way and dreams of exposing these talents we have. Talented musicians all have different ways of being successful. They want to be represented and remembered in a different way. Lets say that this musician's goal was to be the best rapper ever. But his manager tells him he would be better off trying to be the best pop artist ever. So now his goal is changed and he has achieved this new goal of being a great pop star. But if he achieves someone else's goal how fulfilled could he possibly feel? At the end of the day he's going to feel empty.
It's not right to categorize Rolle as being selfish if he does what he wants to do. When it comes to things like this, your career, your future, you have all the right to do what makes you happy and fulfilled. Sometimes you have to be a bit “selfish” and consider your happiness above others.
I really liked the personal input. I think all of us are dealing with that a bit. It's almost college time, and we're all going to have to make some difficult choices. I also like how you tied together so much of what we've done, the star, the baselines. Lastly, I really like how you pointed out Rolle isn't selfish, more that he should have the freedom to choose.
Keep being great,
Well said. I'm intrigued what your dad's reasons for keeping you close to home are though. Is it love? Is it security?
I instinctively think selfishness: he wants you to stay so he can keep an eye on you, so he can save money, so he can control what you do to follow what he wants.
But that's just me being a judgmental cynic. I certainly hope has has better reasons for keeping you down here when being away is the best thing in the world for you.
People deserve the right to choose whatever they want to do with their life. We have the power to make our own choices. Nobody has the right to force someone to do things they believe are good at. Nobody can control what we do except ourselves. Even though, Myron Rolle is good at a lot of things, but ultimately he has the power to choose what he wants to be. Whether Rolle chooses to be a neurosurgeon or an NFL player, it ultimately comes down to him to make the decision.
People should have the right to do what makes them happy. Forcing someone to do something is unacceptable because in the end all they will feel is misery for doing the things they don’t like to do. In Rolles case, he decided to pick a career that makes him happy.
If I were the one raising Rolle, I would allow him to make his own choices. I want him to explore around until he finds his passion. I would not want to pressure him in doing something he doesn’t like. As a parent, I would also encourage him to research the field he wants to pursue in before making a final decision. I want him to follow his heart and do what makes him happy.
I would raise Myron the way I prefer to be raised. I want him to be free and explore new things. I want him to be able to choose his own destiny without having any interference. I want him to try new things; even if costs him to lose everything.
You only get one chance to live, so why not spend your time chasing your passion and doing something you love to do.
“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don't be trapped by dogma - which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.”
Myron Rolle should think about what he wants the most and stick to it. He can’t be everything he should either pick football or pick being a doctor. If it were up to me I’d want to take the safe route of becoming a doctor. I don’t enjoy being the focus of the spotlight and being in the NFL puts that pressure on you. Being a doctor you have total control over your future, where as in football there is a good chance things never pan out as they should.
From the GM’s stand point, picking Myron Rolle is a gamble that many would pass on. He hasn’t played for a while, he lacks elite athleticism and the risk seems higher than the reward. His hopes of being picked in the first round are out, no experienced GM would take him as a first rounder.
Myron owes society nothing and vice versa. Whatever his decision is, he is doing what makes him happy and that is the ultimate goal in life to be happy with what you do. We can’t expect everyone to be happy some people believe athletes are wasted talents, others enjoy watching athletes display the best of human abilities. You can’t expect everybody to change the world into something different. Myron will do what puts him in the best position to succeed.
Myron Rolle would most likely get drafted into the NFL and never lead a team to a championship. His career at best will be playing for several teams as a reserve player. I don’t see him ever being a star player or making the most out of his talents because would be buried behind proven players. Most likely his NFL career will flame out quickly and he would then pursue his other dreams.
You're right when you say that Myron should just choose one thing and stick to it. I totally agree to how you believe that he owes nothing to society and therefore should just do what he wants to do. Great response.
Life can be long or short depends on how the person sees it. When one is unsatisfied of course there is not enough time in life, but if you live for yourself, you will find true gratification.
A person can be good at certain fields but not necessary enjoy it. Throughout my life, I have always been given tasks, assignments, and work as a student. In pre-school, all I knew to do was to follow instructions. In elementary school, all I do each day was to finish school work. I feel accomplished, but I rarely enjoy them. Starting middle school, I found out there are things in the world more enjoyable. I was eager to go to art class, ballet class, and piano and flute lessons. Although school work could be easily finished, I often prefer practicing the others more than studying for school tests.
In high school, I began to feel tiresome every time I had to do homework. I dislike the fact that I had to do work I have no interest in. I often felt like I was just a machine, take in orders and produce what was expected. I am happy when I finished homework, not only am I proud at the accomplishment but the main point is that I am free to do what I desire. One downside is I am often exhausted when I finally have my spare time.
Myron Rolle was well gifted and intelligent. He had the greatest opportunity to fulfill society’s hopes. He was successful under everyone’s expectation, but he was not contented. He switched to different subjects because he knew he wanted something else. He was looking for something more joyous, something that means more to him, something that will complement his life with and leave no regret.
No one has the right to choose for anyone; a decision without authorization is invalid. Listen to your heart and avoid repent. Do not oppress own desires and blindly follow others. Do not live for the expectations of people around you. Live for yourself, for your dreams, for your happiness. –Sushan R Sharma
(*STEP*) (*S*)tandards. (*T*)alent. (*E*)xpectations. (*P*)otential. All these things we hold and live up to. Standards set a bar for us to surpass. Talents give us an edge. Expectations drive us to meet our standards. Potential gives us the hope we need to succeed. There are millions of different kinds of jobs out there; it is just the matter of finding them. We all are running towards our destination, whether it is for the right or wrong reason. We may get lost, lose our breath, sprain an ankle, or walk. But, we don’t quit. We may have to tighten our shoe laces, rejuvenate, or even get crutches, but we don’t stop.
Who are we to stop a man like Rolle from running after his dreams? A person like Myron Rolle, has the same privileges as anyone else. Free to pursue anything he wants to do. We don’t tell a marathon runner to stop and tell them to become a swimmer. This is the same reason why we shouldn’t forbid Rolle from what he loves to do. It isn’t anyone’s business to tell Rolle to become a NFL star or a neurosurgeon.
When I was raised by my aunt and foster parents, I was never pressured into doing something I was not passionate about. My parents put me first. If I was the father of Myron Rolle, why would stop my own son from doing what he loves? I would not stop the path of such a gifted young individual. I want to raise him with the correct mind set, but that does not mean I would keep him from pursuing his dreams. I am not going to make my son live a life he doesn’t want to live because that’s just how I was raised. I will keep my son’s dreams first. I may give him guidance and support as his father, but not set a narrow path for him to walk on. He has every right to run around the world, as long as and as much has he pleases.
Even if there is a risk of Rollo losing everything, I would tell him “go for it.” It is better than ending up doing something you hate for the rest of your life. At the very least, I would know that he tried, and tried he’s very best. When it comes to pursuing what you truly love, no one needs to be save for, he or she is already saved.
Who are we to stop Rolle’s next (*STEP*)?
It is often rare to witness individuals like Myron Rolle, who is gifted in every way possible. Rolle has the talent and ability to become a neurosurgeon or a NFL player. That is something unprecedented in the world. He strives for success and his life is always filled with challenges. A common mistake that people make is that they envy Rolle’s talents; as a result, Rolle is given an enormous amount of pressure and expectations. Even though Rolle has so much talent, he sacrifices a lot. This ultimately serves as the catalyst to why Rolle does not have the satisfaction to enjoy his success. Rolle’s given abilities is not a blessing but a curse. A curse that only can come with success.
I remember the first time I went to Knott's Berry Farm. It was for a science project and it counted for a big chunk of my grade. The project my group was given was a 8 page packet and it consisted of questions that involved the park itself and the topic we were learning at school. Desperately needing to raise my grade in science, I spent majority of the time we spent there answering the questions to the packet. I remember spending lunch time trying to get the packet done correctly. I ended missing a lot of the park itself. I didnt get to go on a lot of the rides and it wasnt a good first time experience.
Now looking back on that day, I should of worked a lot less hard and just enjoy the amusement park; considering it was my first time. Rolle’s life reminded me that a person only lives once and that I shouldnt be squandering my time but rather to enjoy it. I mean at the end of it all, I would rather live a happy life and a life without any regrets.
As for Rolle, he is still lucky that he has the talent and abilities to succeed. He just needs to enjoy what he really loves and ignore the pressure coming from society. The expectations that Rolle gets is one of the reasons why its difficult for him to enjoy life.
If I could give Rolle a quote to follow, it would be this by Sarah Dessen,
“What you have to decide... is how you want your life to be. If your forever was ending tomorrow, would this be how you'd want to have spent it? Listen, the truth is, nothing is guaranteed. You know that more than anybody. So dont be afraid. Be alive.”
- Sarah Dessen
Your post remind me the time in 8th grade's field trip. I was working very hard on the booklet and didnt have time to enjoy the rides. We were too young, so we always listen to the teachers. I have so many regrets now, if I could worry a little less about the work, and I would be able to play around the rides with my friends. Great Post.
To be born gifted is an extreme rarity. Very few of us are actually born with such knowledge, and those of us who are luckily blessed are usually compelled to use their knowledge to benefit others less fortunate. Though to Rolle it may seem as if he's never had a "normal" life, to others who are seen as normal, they view Rolle's life in jealousy, with the fact that without trying he's able to have a gifted talent.
In elementary school, there were a selected number of kids who were put into a program called GATE (Gifted and Talented Education). Those who were put into the program were given special classes, taught by a different teacher, and did things different from the rest of us. Many of us "regular kids" often stared at GATE kids in curiosity and envy, wondering what we could do to get in, to be seen as "naturally smart". Since we didn't know what it was like to be in GATE, those in the program probably wondered what it was like to be normal as well. Life is full of curiosity, why are some people better at some things than the rest? We are all presented challenges in life, all of which are different from each others. One may be challenged to get into a good university and work hard for a successful future, while another's challenges may be to choose to help the world in the career of a neurosurgeon or to pursue a career that they equally have a passion with but does not benefit others.
It's true that for Myron Rolle, his blessings may seem a curse at times because of all the pressure that's expected of him; However, many of us who wish and try to be as talented as Rolle, are unlikely to be compared to Rolle no matter how hard we try. To others such as Paul, whose only hope is to survive, Rolle's decision seems easy because they cannot view life on the opposite side of the world, where others are battling their lives away in war.
Ultimately, it's hard to give up what you like in order to succumb to the expectations of others, but when you are basically given the power to decide one's fate by becoming a neurosurgeon, the sacrifice should be well worth it with the satisfaction that you'll get of saving one's life.
Eliza, I agree with you. I think everyone has his or her own troubles. We are jealous of people like Rolle; we are jealous of people who are smarter or taller than us, but we don't know about what they think.
Rolle is talented and special, but just like a normal person, he wants to realize his own dreams; he doesn't want to listen to other people. He has gifted talents and a normal person's heart.
Why do you say that Myron would never benefit others as a football player? Will he just be dead weight to society. Frankly, I find no inspiration at all in football but I'm sure that there are countless people who do. Your voice implied that one of Myron's options is more or less noble than the other.
Hey Eliza, I completely agree with you. All of us can make the choice, but not all of us has the opportunity to make the choice. We aren't all talented like Myron Rolle, but I agree that it's his decision.
I agree with you on the point where knowledge can be seen as a curse. Even though it seems like a blessing for your own self benifits, there are people who feel posterior for not being as good as someone else. Its only natural for people to desire, but it is a curse for those who are more "up there" because they tend to make others feel posterior.
Making choices is what people often encounter during lifetimes. Whether the decisions are huge or diminutive, they always affect our lives at some point in the future. If I were Myron Rolle, I would not risk my time on doing something that is not guaranteed of rewards. I would rather choose to be a neurosurgeon that is stable and also a goal of mine.
In my opinion, living a life with constant challenge could be a blessing, but a curse at the same time. It could be blessing because this way you never know what’s coming next, your life is full of surprises. On the other hand, you never get to enjoy the success when you achieve your goal because there is another one waiting for you to achieve. If I were to make a decision, I would choose to be a person that conquers challenges one after another. I wish my life could be interesting rather than simple.
Looking at our community, where parents dominating over their children all the time, I feel like students here in Arcadia are becoming their parents’ doll instead of themselves. We should have the right to control what we want, especially when we only get to live once. It is nice for parents to plan for their children’s future, but have they thought about what do their children want? There are too many dreams being crushed because parents are too focused on children’s school work. People should always be free to invest in their own interest.
After all, aren’t we born to chase our dreams?
You only live once!
"You live only once", a quote we usually say actually means something. I wish to pursuit my interests goal as well. Thank you for sharing.
Life always takes turns in unexpected ways. You part with your girlfriend of 10 years or your parents unexpectedly pass away in a car crash, etc. We always try to plan things ahead: "I'm going to get straight A's throughout high school, go to a prestigious university and eventually to med school and earn 500k a year". At the end that person most likely becomes something else, not because of the fact that becoming a doctor is hard(which it is), but because you never know what the future holds.
If I am successful in ways that I don't intend to be, that success would be of more worth to be than my desired successes of the past. I personally think it is stupid to linger in the past. I'm not saying that we should forget the past and move on completely, but it shouldn't be something that holds us back. Although it is important for us to achieve our original goals, I believe that there is a reason why we stray from our original road. Personally, my faith as a Christian allows me to trust God in the path that our life takes.
We are all born with different talents, different qualities both physically and mentally. Similarly we are born with different roles and responsibilities. In the case of Rolle, he didn't have a point of satisfaction. There was no such thing as "enough" in his life. From one's point of view this could be seen as being cursed, cursed with the task of accomplishing the endless list of things to do. On the other hand, another person could view it as being blessed, blessed with the ability to pursue whatever he/she wished. I would side with the latter. The difference between the two scenarios is choice. Being ordinary allows one to just live life that certain way, however being given multiple paths allows one to CHOOSE the path they wish. This ties back to that baseline about knowing too much as opposed to knowing too little. Knowing everything, having too much talents allows that person to choose what to do.
Rolle tried to pursue too many things at once. There is a limit on humans to how many things that they can accomplish. Becoming a neurosurgeon and a professional football player are two things that a mortal being could do simultaneously. Seeing this, it is obvious that a manager of would choose not to pick him, that manager being me in this case.
Last year at Nike Cross Nationals, on the eve of the big race, I got to have dinner with a very special and talented young man named German Fernandez. He was quiet, unassuming, and humble, and yet motivated our team to win, if for nothing else, then for pride in our home state. German is from Riverbank California. Now he's a professional track and cross athlete, sponsored by Nike. He lives in Beaverton Oregon, where Nike has its international headquarters and where the 400 invited high school cross country athletes got to mingle with Nike pros.
The story of German's rise to the professional ranks was what fascinated me the most. In his senior year of high school, German won the CIF State Championships in the 3200 with a time of 8:34. If you're not already doing the math, that's the equivalent of running a 4:18 in the mile, twice. His time crushed the national record set in 2000 and shattered the state record of 8:44 that had stood unchallenged for thirty-three years. German then went out and rolled to a victory in the 1600. That very day Nike offered him a contract. It was a piece of paper with words and a number, and that number had six digits, and not even on the low end of that range. Yet it was the key to German's future. He turned it down, opting instead to attend the University of the State of Oklahoma.
German is not only athletically talented but also a bright young man. If the choice he made was about education, he could have gone anywhere. Instead he went to (as my uncle, a former OSU professor, called it) a middling state school – a university not known for its academics, but for its national championship cross country program.
Four years later, German graduated and inked his deal with Nike. Now he hangs out in Beaverton and does pretty much exactly what I do – runs twice a day under the supervision of a world-class coach and eats a lot. Except that he does less than half the number of races that I do. And he doesn’t go to school.
To me, that sounds like the life. As German put it: “I don’t have a job. My job is to take a nap and play Xbox.”
At the time I heard this, I believed that I would soon be able to understand his decision. I thought that after the excitement of Nationals faded and I took some college visits and committed to a place, then I would see the reason why German chose to further himself along the path of higher education. I knew that as I made my own college decision I would gain the maturity to empathize with him.
If tomorrow - and this is absolutely hypothetical - a major shoe brand offered me a contract at half or even a third of what German's was, I wouldn't even have to think about it.
I would look for a pen.
Hey, Mitchell. I really enjoyed reading your post. I can see where you're coming from and I would have undoubtedly done the same thing. Good job!
As I was growing up, my dad always tried his best to keep chinese traditions alive at home. Every Sunday he took me and the rest of my family to the Hsi Lai Temple. I tried to meditate and chant as my dad did but, I knew I never did any of that whole heartedly. I was also put into Chinese classes from the second grade until sixth grade but to be honest, I never took that class seriously and thought that it was a waste of my Saturday. For Chinese New Year, my family would put up a bunch of decorations, mainly in the color red, all over the walls and then we gathered as a family to eat. After dinner, we would bow and ask our elders for red envelopes. But I never really actually understood why the decorations were all in red. And I just thought that receiving red envelopes was like receiving presents during Christmas. I guess when we're little we see things as much simpler, we never bother to ask why or try to find the importance of things. And soon enough, I grew up and I wanted to understand what the point of it all was. Why am I going to temple every weekend when I don't know who exactly I was praying to or what I was supposed to pray about. Why am I supposed to learn Chinese? Is it simply just cause my parents forced me to? Why am I putting up a bunch of decorations that I didn't know the meaning of?
My parents really pushed us into all these traditions without trying to get my brother and I to truly understand what it was about. So then rather than pushing us into embracing the Chinese culture more, I started to stray away from it. I started to believe in Christianity. I thought that perfecting my grammar and reading skills in English seemed much more of a priority, living in America and all. I started to look forward to the New Year's countdown rather then brunch with my family on Chinese New Year.
Eventually, we stopped going to the Temple as a family, my brother and I quit chinese school, and less and less of my family still gathered to celebrate New Years. And looking back on it all, I regret it. I wish my family could still be excited and serious about tradition like we were before. Now I understand the importance of learning another language, let alone our heritage language. Now I understand why we celebrate Chinese New Year and it's importance.
My parents always urged me to go back to visit China and Taiwan every summer but I never really wanted to and ended up going to both places only once. It was important for my parents to try to keep the traditions alive and it's sad to see these traditions now slowly fade away. But once I get the chance to have children of my own, I want to keep certain traditions alive. I never want them to forget our roots.
When I was a kid, I always dreamt of becoming a professional athlete. However, I was never as gifted as Myron Rolle. I never had the speed, agility, or vertical jump to begin with. I always imagined myself playing the sport I loved and receiving huge paychecks; that was the dream life for me. Myron Rolle, on the other hand, is gifted with the talent, but doesn’t use it to maximize his capabilities.
I have a friend who is extremely book smart, but too lazy to put his knowledge to use. He took a practice SAT test and got a 2310 without studying; however, he doesn’t do his school work or homework, so his GPA is around a 2.5. He can easily read something off a book and understand it like he’s been studying for it his whole life. Honestly, I can’t understand his mindset; to have brainpower like that and not put it to use. He just doesn’t care. If I had his intelligence, I’d be using it to go places. I always think to myself: what would happen if he just applied himself?
Not to say that Myron Rolle doesn’t apply himself; he certainly does. But he doesn’t give either football or neurosurgery his all. I say that whatever he chooses to do, which should be entirely his decision and not anyone else’s, he should just choose one and go through with it. Me? I would choose football over neurosurgery in an instant. Risks come with everything, so why bother to get both done? He wants to finish his football career then start on his medical studies, but I feel that he would hold back in football in order to preserve his medical career. It’s disappointing to see people not put in full effort into something that I enjoy watching, so I hope that as long as he makes a decision and puts all that he can to be the best he can, and then he will be extremely satisfied with his decision.
“I am not going to force you to work on certain field. You live your life and I can only give you recommendations.” Said my dad through instant message.
Last summer, I finally come to the time to decide what major I would choose for college. I could not choose between business and engineering, so I asked my dad, who was already a president of his own company, for help. He explained that business was a major with unstable job but relatively higher income. Yet engineering provided stable income but is extremely hard to master. Both paths diverged greatly and both seemed to have bright futures.
If I were to major in engineering and became an engineer, I would have had chance to potentially help create inventions that might change the world like Steve Jobs. If I were to major in business and became a manager, an economic expert, or even a CEO, I could make a decent amount of income but live my life meaninglessly.
It was a hard choice for me and similarly for Myron Rolle. Society demanded Rolle to be a neurosurgeon so he could save thousands of lives. NFL demanded him to become a professional football player so they can make money out of him. There is an old proverb in Chinese, “sacrifice oneself to protect others”. If Rolle was truly gifted in medical skills, he should give up on NFL and head Oxyford directly. The society needed him because not everyone was intelligent enough to save people, but so many could fill in his missing spot in NFL. Rolle was lucky enough to be noticed by many unlike other who sacrificed themselves for others. Even if Rolle fails to be a neurosurgeon, people would look at his name and say “that was the guy who gives up for own goods and try to help others.”
Rolle did not go the path society wanted him to. However, I respected his choice because it was his choice to live his own life and try out things. On the other hand, I also chose the selfish way for myself and intend to major in Business.
The greatest productive force is human selfishness. -Robert A. Heinlein
Tick Tock. The clock is ticking. Panic. Rush! Rush! Relax... Now hurry, get going! Quickly, quickly, no time now because the clock is already ticking.
There’s only so much time for all of us, only so much time to leave our legacies. For me, for you, and even for Rolle. Some of us leave a deeper impression than others, and some of us leave a deeper imprint onto eternal history. We only have so much time before we become nothing - just a name etched on a grave sitting on a site somewhere on the furthest outskirts of town. Alone and forgotten.
We don’t want that. None of us do. So we come and then we go, and in between we dance with vigor and with as much flare and style as possible. We dance on the stage of life panting and chasing, just to catch a few seconds of attention from the fleeting spotlight of fame, of success so we will be remembered by our audience - the rest of the world. Both you and I, we are on this stage, performing right now.
I am no Rolle, I am no prodigy. But I've always been expected to do more, to have more, to be more than my brother. My brother is talented, he’s smart, and he’s a really lovely person. But it’s because I’m the younger one. I’m the younger one so I should be the one who does better - I’m the second chance, I get the second shot.
It’s indescribable, this amount of pressure. The thing is I was never told directly that I should be better, it was just sort of implied - and so I do it. It no longer comes as a surprise, or happiness that I do well in school, or get good grades. It’s just something I’m supposed to do now. It’s to be expected.
I love my mom, and I idolize her for bringing me up this far. The best I can do for her is make her proud, and I want to make her proud, I feel it’s kind of like I’m repaying her. I know she doesn't want me to think that way, because she raised me because she loves me. But I feel an undying guilt within me, seeing her pop out white hairs for me, seeing her fold wrinkles because of me. She’s here for me, so I’m here to make her proud. It’s dangerous. I find that I’m constantly balancing on the edge of dreams and reality. I can’t fail, and theres no room for me to fail. I don’t let myself fail, but when I do it’s hard to forgive myself. I’m at a constant war with myself, fighting myself to save myself.
I can’t fail because I want to make my mom proud so badly. I want it so bad. I press this pressure onto myself, I’m that one that drives myself into a corner. No place to run, no place to hide.
Rolle has so much potential, he has too much potential, so he too, has driven himself into a corner. He wants to be in the NFL, but people expect him to become more, they want him to become someone to save part of the world. So he’s struggling. He wants to be in the NFL, but he’s also fighting to catch up with the spotlight of the world. He’s chasing after himself, but he has also cornered himself.
There’s only so much all of us can do. Rolle is chasing after himself, and he is chasing after the spotlight. We put ourselves on the edge, with the danger of falling. We gasp, desperately running towards the fleeting, passing shine of fame.
Just a few seconds. That’s all we need - just a few seconds to be illuminated by spotlight for the world to see us. We work for those few seconds, we work so we can be remembered. So we won’t be forgotten. Rolle has already been illuminated, the world has already seen him, and he is still chasing while his dream of the NFL is running the other way. He is chasing his dream, he is chasing the spotlight.
We are all chasing. I am chasing so I can make my mom proud. So I can tell her it’s alright now, everything’s okay, you can relax now. No more white hair, no more wrinkles, just breathe, relax, and step back. Life is good now.
We only have so much time to leave a page in the chapters bound together by the world. We only have so much time to make this world our stage. We want to be remembered, we want to chase after the dreams we dream, we want to do what we want to do. So we come by this life and then we go.
You are still performing, I am still performing, and Rolle is still performing. We chase, sprint, pant, trip, get up and start running again. We get up because the world has their prying eyes on us. The world has their eyes on Rolle, every pair of eyes smashing pressure down onto him to be someone he doesn't want to be, but we still see him up there. He hasn't gotten off the stage, no, he hasn't. Rolle is up there because he still coins himself as a “future NFL star”.
I’m no Rolle, no renaissance man like he is. But I’m still here, you’re still here, all of us are still here. Why? Even after we've tripped once, maybe twice, and the third time we may have even fallen off. Why?
Because tick, tock, the clock is ticking. Get up now, get going! Run! Go, go! Hurry up, no time, no time left. The spotlight is coming, go and chase it now. Quickly... The world is watching, and the clock is ticking.
“What if you're successful in ways you didn't intend to be successful?”
In the summer of 2011, was when I moved to Arcadia. Soon after, I registered to be enrolled at Arcadia High School, and joined the junior class. I chose my schedule right before the student registration date. At that time, there were not a lot of available courses. Therefore, for the science requirement, the counselor just put me into the Chemistry class.
I didn’t really enjoy studying Chemistry. I do not like to memorize all the strange symbols for each element. I do not really understand why we should calculate the mass of each element and make the equation balanced.
Before the class, I planned to spend most of the time on studying for Chemistry. However, things got off track. I barely studied for Chemistry after school. The only thing I did was just listen during the class. The result, however, was that I got one hundred percent on most of my exams, and my total percentage never got lower than 95%.
At the middle of the second semester, it was the time for all the students to start to choose their next year schedule. During the Chemistry class, after I got another 100% test back from the teacher, the teacher just asked me “Sunny, are you planning to take AP Chemistry next year? I think you should.” At that time, I was confused because I was pretty sure that I was going to take AP Physics next time – not my disinterested subject, Chemistry. Then I was considering maybe I could do a better job on AP Chemistry. I had not learned anything about Physics since the 8th grade. I was not sure that I could do a pretty good job in AP Physics.
I wanted to try for the subject I liked. Therefore, I still chose to study AP Physics this year. My success in Chemistry made me realize my talent in this subject, but I only saw this as a confidence that I might also be able to do a good job in Physics too. The real success I wanted to obtain was a success in Physics.
Everyone has multiple talents. Just because we are good at something does not mean that we are not also good at other things. Everyone needs to discover their talents. Therefore, we have to try on things that we are interested in, and then we can find out whether we are also able to be good at things we like. Our talents will not disappear, while we focus on our goals, as we still have the talents that we are supposed to have. However, sometimes we are good at what we are not interested in. Rolle and I have this in common; I may be good at Chemistry and he may be thought to be good at politics, but neither of us wants to pursue these. We want to focus on things we are interested in, what we really care about. That we have talents that we do not use does not change the fact that they are the talents that we do not intend to have.
I know what you mean by being good at something you don't like and being bad at something you do like! I really like biology, but I'm really bad at it. The good thing is that, when you're interested in something, you will automatically be more encouraged to be better at it! Because when you actually enjoy doing something, you will spend time to improve on it Thanks for your post!
I applaud you for pursuing a subject like physics despite having people tell you that you are amazing at chemistry. While I certainly believe that you could have done amazing things in chemistry, I know that physics will always be the right choice simply because it is a discipline that you love. I am a firm believer that it isn't what your best at that matters, but what you love. I hope that you continue to pursue things out of care and not peer pressure!
I applaud you for pursuing a subject like physics despite having people tell you that you are amazing at chemistry. While I certainly believe that you could have done amazing things in chemistry, I know that physics will always be the right choice simply because it is a discipline that you love. I am a firm believer that it isn't what your best at that matters, but what you love. I hope that you continue to pursue things out of care and not peer pressure!
It is the moment of the school year, most of the seniors are celebrating for going to good colleges after they graduate. They are happy because they are one step closer to achieve their goals. What about me? I do not know what to do with my future, I cannot even decide what should I be major in.
Do I have a goal?
I do not think I have one, and I am feeling so lost. I am going to a city college, and this sounds bad compare to my other friends. When my friends were talking about their colleges, I was just sitting there because I cannot make any connections with them. I was not jealous, I was just afraid of my future.
A peaceful night, I was lying on my bed with my mom and I told her about how my friends are going to good colleges.
“Mom, don’t you think I am useless and have no future? because I am just going to a city college.” I said.
“Of course not, you will transfer, also, you can save a lot of money. Just don’t force yourself to do something that is hard for you, be happy and make your life easier.” she answered me in a positive way to cheer me up.
Suddenly, I have faith in myself again. Life is not what others tell you what is the best, so are successes. Maybe graduate from a good college and become a doctor is what "successful" means to others, but that is not what success means to me.
I am glad that I have a family that support me and let me follow with my heart, they never rush me because they hope that I can take it easy. They want me to be happy because they believe it will lead me to my own successful life eventually. Goal does not mean anything because it is just a motivation to push you to your own successful way. However, everyone can be successful in many different ways. It might not always be at the perfect time, but I believe the successes will come eventually.
I enjoyed reading your blog. I know what you mean, all of my years in school I've been working, working, and working. I never really stopped to think what I wanted, all I was working towards was getting into college, and getting as much scholarships as I could. After I read your post I realized that I should have relaxed, calmed down, and taken life at a slower pace. School has been so stressful for me, because I'm always trying my hardest, but that's not what life is about is it?
I'm really glad you have such understanding parents, it's really a blessing to have people support your decisions. We all go through life at a different pace, and succeed in different ways, and I'm sure you will succeed in your own way too!
Keep up the great work! Thank for the amazing read.
Not gonna lie, I really envy how your parents would let you do what you want. My parents were really unsupportive of me when I went to a community college first, so I was forced to work extremely hard the last four years so I could go directly to a four year university. Anyway, I wish you luck on your decision
Never feel bad about your college because what matter is what the knowledge you'll obtain in those years! My parents are pretty similar to yours, they don't care what college I get into. They only care if I will learn a lot. I wish you'll try hard in college and always look forward and never behind. Good lucks.
I love your mom so much! She understands what you want and always support you. My parents forced me to go to a 4-year university directly, so I didn't have much free time. Great post, thanks for sharing
I can perceive how you feel.
Alot of my friends are going through the same thing, but it makes me happy that you're finding yourself through this experience.
Most of us by now have to make a decision similar to Rolle’s on where we are going to college and what we are going to study. We’ve all had to make decisions based on what we want to continue doing and what we want to stop in college. Rolle has had to make decisions based on what he wants to continue doing. The difference is that Rolle is amazing at everything he does. Every action he performs is always spectacular. Rolle is simply great at everything he does. The majority of us are not like Rolle. We pick and choose the subjects and activities we want to pursue in college based on what we like, what we are good at, and what we can throw away because we are bad at it. Rolle can’t use that final option to his advantage. He enjoys playing football and dreams of medical school. Even though the decision at hand for Rolle may seem like a choice that will throw the rest of his life into motion, he still needs to make it on his own. What ever he will pick, he will change some aspect of our world because of his amazing abilities.
In my college decisions, there were times when I wanted to just see into the future to see where I was going to end up. Im glad I am not able to see the future. Seeing me at my future college and what my life would be like would make me want to try a new path. Why would you go down a road that you already know, the fun of the unknown college adventure is already ruined for you. A decision should be based upon if you know you are making the right choice rather than you choosing it because you already are certain of the outcome. If you make the wrong decision, it doesn’t matter. You will end up learning from those mistakes. Those lessons you learned you probably wouldn’t have met if you would have chosen the other path. This also leads us back to the foundation baseline question, is it better to know too little or to know too much? The less you know about your future, the more exiting and adventurous it will be.
Knowledge is only power if you only make the best use of it. It's why sometimes the unknown holds more than what we already know. I like your approach to decision-making, because hitting a brick wall only makes us want to crush through it harder. Those who aren't passionate and desire enough about what they want in life will just walk away. Rolle would do neither, so we should aspire to desire just as much as that.
We can't have it all.
Growing up, my parents pushed me to do a lot of things I didn't want to do. They simply made to do it because they thought that I would be good at it. Playing the piano, dancing, modeling, painting, singing, acting-- I tried it all. But because they forced me to try so many things all, I lost focus on what I wanted to do, and what I wanted to become. My dad would force me to play the piano when all I really wanted to do was dance. Because they wouldn't let me dance and I refused to play the piano, I lost everything. I could not play the piano, dance, paint, sing, or act anymore. Not only did I let myself down, I let everyone that was important to me down.
I am definitely nowhere as talented or intelligent as Myron Rolle, but I think we shared one common problem: trying to meet everyone's expectations, only to disappoint ourselves at the end of the day.
Rolle was fortunate to have the best of both worlds, but he was also very unlucky, With that much potential comes responsibilities, and with so many responsibilities comes with difficult decisions and sacrifices. In this case, Rolle could not have it all. Should Rolle try to better the world by going to Oxford, or should he pursue his passion with NFL?
But what it comes down to is that, when it's the end of the day, it's really all just about yourself. Before you fall asleep at night, all you think about are the decisions, responsibilities, and regrets you have. Nobody is going to be there to comfort you when you make the wrong choices. No matter how much Rolle's decision could benefit society as a whole, no matter how thankful people would be if he became a neurosurgeon, and no matter how good of a professional football player he is, in the end, it's just gonna be all about himself. When he retires as a NFL player or neurosurgeon, it's just going to Rolle by himself, and all the decisions he made.
If Rolle tried to meet everyone's expectation, and the result was not what he wanted, then there's nothing left for Rolle to live for. He's gonna have to try to sleep at night, thinking about what he could've been and what he is now. Rolle is going to live with regrets for not choosing what he really wanted to do, just because he was too afraid of society's reaction if he choose something they didn't favor.
And a man should not die with any regrets.
I can completely relate to how your parents first wanted you to pursue many things at once. And I agree that in the end, the choice is ultimately up to the person themselves. We should select what's right for us and what we envision ourselves pursuing for the rest of our lives. Only then will we ever accomplish anything worthwhile!
I totally agree with you when you say that responsibilities do come with those talents and that there also is nothing to live for if you are doing something you don't truly love. My parents used to also force me upon playing Thai instruments, and over time I found myself unable to continue on with it and I also quit.
For someone that wants to become a neurosurgeon and a football player, we should encourage him to do whatever he wants in order to accomplish his dreams. Not everyone has the goal to has both occupation, so we shouldn't let someone so talented to be dispirited from his path. For people like Myron Rolle, if they are stuck at doing something they dislike or is disinterested in, then they might not be fully committed to the activity. No matter how smart that person is, he might not uses the same level of intelligence compared to doing something he likes. If we were to make people like Rolles focus on just one particular area, that would only narrows their perspective. They can only learn more about the world and can pick up more interests if we give them more to try out.
I am getting more comfortable with the way I'm raised, as my parents motivate me to try out new things in high school, such as Ocean Science Bowl, Quiz Bowl, and other activities. However, this is type of parental support is fairly recent, as they used to sign me up for many classes that I didn't like. They made me take a lot of classes in order "to make me a better students". That includes piano, tae kwon do, and even golf. I actually find this similar to when people tell Rolle to reconsider his path. I enjoy golf and tae kwon do, but not piano. In fact, I think I only try half as hard in piano compared to my one hundred percent concentration on golf. Things changed by high school, as my parents decided to let me choose my activities. I joined track even though some of my friends said it will be a burden to my grade. Although I could've gotten better grades if I didn't join track, I must say that my first track season was really fun and memorable. I met a lot of new people and learned a lot of stuffs that I find surprising to learn in track team. I would definitely treat Rolle the way I'm raised right now. I want Rolle to not just work hard in what he wants to do, but also focuses on many subjects, so that he can be more of a renaissance man. I want him to have the freedom to do what he wants to do with the great mind of us, so he can meet new people and learn new things like me.
Hey Max. Like you, my parents enrolled me in many things as well. Even though they may not have contributed that much to my life in the way they were intentioned to, I gained life experience as well as made many new friends in the process, so I am definitely thankful for that. I believe that all these extra-curricular classes serve at least one other purpose than education enrichment.
There is no enough.
We all have to make choices someday. As a matter of fact, we will have to decide what we want to do in our lives in a matter of months. Myron Rolle had multiple doors open from a possible position in the NFL, becoming a surgeon, or even venture into politics, but what is life when it’s all a success story? Rolle had been blindsided by such monumental success you kind of lose track of what success really feels like. While we should be grateful for all our accomplishments, but to lack any sense of satisfaction in your life is disheartening.
As I transition from one activity to another in my hectic childhood schedule my parents would always remind me of their childhood. They had left their country to seek a more substantial future, but left to thrive by themselves in a place with a different culture, language, and standards. I lived a childhood with parents who supported me and given me opportunities they wouldn’t have dreamed possible in their childhood. Arguably, they pretty much had no childhood. From sunrise to dawn, my life was filled with afterschool programs beyond school to get ahead of my classmates to swimming and tennis lessons. These were opportunities that I have been given that many other kids dreamed of having including my parents when they were a child. As grateful as I was for these opportunities it got to some point in which it became a hassle. On top of my 7 or so hours in elementary school I had accumulated 3 plus hours doing extracurricular activities that my parents wanted me to do. I just didn’t have the time to enjoy all the activities that I had been a part of. I lost what it meant to be happy.
Myron Rolle wasn’t destined to fail, he just couldn’t even if he tried to. When you’re living a life full of success you lose the feeling of happiness or real satisfaction. He had been given so many irresistible opportunities like being offered presidency of the Bahamas and positions in the NFL. He lived a life without failure, he never knew what it was like to fail so he never knew what it was like to succeed. He’s just living life that is normal to him while we praise him like a god. We are grateful to be in the hands of such pure talent, but it’s a virus that eats us from the inside out. We aren’t given second chances to live so we must enjoy the time we are given.
Hey Brandon, nice job. I like how you said we must enjoy the time we are given. It really ties to one of my favorite quotation: "carpe diem". I agree that students at a very young age should not be made to take classes just so that they can get ahead. They should enjoy their fleeting youth and take advantage of the time they have to have fun. I guess you might feel a little bad about missing out those hours of fun, but your parents at that time definitely believed they will help you. I believe those hours will not be wasted.
I feel you. My life was fulfilled with after-school program too. Parents wanted us to learn and be good, but it made us no childhood. Good post!
It's nice to hear someone acknowledge that, even at an early age, you knew the constraints of society were weighing you down and hope for others not to take the same fate.
I never felt those pressures; my parents let me play and grow, mostly on my own.
I hope you've found happiness, or at least are working on the road there.
Having always struggled to find something I’m naturally good at, I found it hard at first to sympathize with Myron Rolle. I couldn’t understand why I should feel sorry for someone who seemingly had it all. I don’t run into many people with the athletic ability to play professional football, the intelligence to be a neurosurgeon, or the charisma to potentially become a diplomat. I definitely don’t run into many people with all of those traits, and if I did, I must say I probably wouldn’t like that person very much. It’s difficult to sympathize with someone I had to consciously remind myself was human.
Yet I do find that I pity his position. Thanks to some “friends” from other World Literature periods, I know what happens to Myron Rolle, but I’m not surprised. I figured that even though he could be any of those things he can’t be all of those things. For some reason, that’s not allowed. Society has created a sink for the talented and a pedestal for the passionate.
With the knowledge of what happens to Myron, I still wouldn’t say that he made the wrong choice. I think the people around him did. We have no right to try to control people like Myron, because they are still people. We can give them our advice, tips, or opinions as tools to make their own decisions, but they are not decisions for us to make for them.
Myron Rolle isn’t playing in the NFL because he didn’t make a decision, and who can really blame him? I can’t imagine having that much pressure on me. It’s tragic to put someone like Myron under the illusion that their decision not only changes their life, but everyone else’s lives.
What happened when Myron wasn’t picked in the first round of the draft? The world kept spinning. The draft kept going. The first pick safety wasn’t Myron Rolle, it was someone else. And this is my point exactly. That someone else will always be there. Prodigies have no responsibility to fill a role; there will always be someone else to fill it. They may be less gifted or they may be a prodigy just like the first, but nobody will resent that person for being the less significant runner-up.
Very well written. At the beginning I too could not understand the struggle of someone who had it all but over time i did too! great post keep it up clay!
Becoming successful at something you didn't intend to become successful at should not make you feel unsatisfactory. In fact, it should make you feel proud knowing you were boring with many skillful qualities. Life simply guides you to new doors or opportunities.
During my sophomore year, I was certain that I was going to attend a community college after high school. I felt like I wasn't smart enough to get accepted into a four year university. While my classmates focused on receiving high grades, I just zoned out and thought about things that didn’t bring me any good. All my teachers knew I had the potential to earn high grades like my other classmates. Everyone knew except me.
One day as I was walking through the school hallways, I heard some people saying racist comments about Mexican people. “Mexican kids don’t even care about school they’re always getting in trouble” Sometimes small comments can mean a lot to someone. Although I wasn't the typical Mexican student getting in trouble, it hurt me that they mentioned my race to describe something negative. I did my very best in all my school work the remainder of my sophomore year. My efforts paid off. Soon I discovered that I enjoyed going to school.
Ever since I put effort in school I realized I was as smart as my fellow classmates. Before, I had a desire to have an easy life. Attending a community college would give me more time to go out and enjoy life. That did not work out so well. Receiving good grades in school motivated me to try even harder. That motivation got me far. In the fall of 2013, I will be attending a four year university, CSULA. It was not in my plans at first, but now I have better plans for my life. These change of plans made me realize that I am capable of accomplishing things that I am not even aware of.
Never refuse trying out new things when your dreams don’t seem to be getting closer. New things are not always a bad thing.
Question 2: No time for fun
“There is no enough”. This statement says it all. Humans will always demand more of other people with potential; it is deeply imbedded within our natures, our very souls. We need to learn when enough is enough. We should sit back and enjoy the view more often and while we’re at it, we should just drop what we are doing and take the time to have a little fun.
Rolle’s many talents seem like more of a curse to me. The shackles of expectations are a heavy weight to both the body and to the mind. Expectations can weigh a ton when stacked atop your back. And you are the only person able to shoulder this burden. I have known a girl for several years now that seems to have given up her childhood, her time to play with her friends to instead attend academic and art classes day and night. Her parents have such high expectations of her, that it is difficult to find time to socialize with her. She seems to have endless classes afterschool on a daily basis, not to mention pre-booked weekends. It seems that she never gets any time to hang out with her close friends and just have fun. No, she is always doing her work in silence, fulfilling expectations, doing what she’s good at. Trying to do her best, or what others consider her best. Without tiring, without crumbling, life goes on. When she looks back on her life, I wonder what she will see. Will it be how she succeeded at many things under the pressure of her family and peers? Or perhaps missed opportunities. She has a strength I do not posses being able to withstand crushing pressures, being able to turn down friend invitations week after week with a sad smile.
Yes, being too talented can be a curse. It is a shame when people have too many skills and are pressured by others to be perfect, the best. Even I have expectations of her. I want her to have more fun. To join her friends and be doing something new, to forget about the pressures of her daily life and instead take a few moments to enjoy the company of companions and share a few laughs in the process.
I think you mean not in the first sentence lol, but you ended strong! Keep up the good work!
Well written post. I feel like I really needed to hear that.. sometimes I get caught up working too hard.
Success is what you make of it
I ran as fast as my small and wobbly legs could carry me, all the while huffing and puffing from exhaustion. I was painfully aware of the frantic mob of peers chasing me down and my heart seemed to explode with every step forward. The next few moments skipped by so fast, that they can only be recalled now as a blur. I had scored my first ever soccer goal.
It was my third year of soccer, and admittedly I was not very good. I spent more time fretting over the bees that swooped by my head than the opposing players. Soccer just did not seem like my sport. Then it happened. I scored. From that moment on, I loved the sport; I loved the adrenaline rush that came with being chased by the enemy, and the joy and pride that came from scoring. I loved being a striker.
As years went by, the opposing teams became stronger, faster, smarter, and much more violent. The time when every team would run in a chaotic mob after a slowly rolling soccer ball was over. My time as a striker was over. I could no longer outrun my opponents, nor did I have the skills needed to dribble around them. I found myself unable to score, frustrating myself, and my coaches; whom by this time were not satisfied by the words “I tried.” They had no choice but to strip me of the position I so dearly loved, and instead put me at defense; sweeper to be exact.
While defense was not my dream position, it probably seemed like it to others. I was good at it. As a sweeper I no longer needed to know complicated tricks to get around the opposing strikers, I no longer needed to be quick as lightning, and I no longer felt like I was letting my team, and coaches, down by not scoring. Defense became my new home, it was the position I was expected to play; the only position I could play.
While I did succeed as a defender, I find that I still long for my old striker position. I miss being able to score goals and the glory that comes with it. Every year I am forced to play sweeper, is another gap that opens to distance me from the sport. I find that I have less fun every game, constantly feeling regret at losing the position that held me attached to soccer for so long. Every mach becomes more of a chore, as I watch my hopes get crushed. I do like defense, but I loved striker, and that will never change.
Unexpected success in an area can be a good thing, but usually it comes with a price. To stick with such an activity often times results in the loss of a dream, and the loss of a dream always results in regret. To truly succeed, one must follow their heart, and master the path that they desire.
Bradley is from an extremely poor family, and his parents both work 12 hour shifts in order to put food on the table, buy him clothing, and allow him to get a proper education. His house is ancient, with only a kitchen, two bedrooms, and one bathroom; not only does he have to share this with his parents, but his four other siblings. He eats peanut butter and jelly sandwiches every single day for lunch, because that's all his parents can afford.
One day Bradley's at a department store, trying to look for a cheap suit and pants since he desperately want to go to his senior prom. He notice a well-dressed kid his age shopping with his mother for the same attire as him, and Bradleys trained eye instantly picks out that his family is well off.
Bradley notices he's saying something, and out of curiously he inches closer, pretending to look at a glossy black suit he knows he won't be able to afford.
He hears him say:
“Mom why do I have to clean the pool again, I just did it yesterday! Isn't that the gardener's job anyway?”
He quickly clenches his fist, enraged that he has so much and himself so little. Enraged that he has all these privileges, and himself none. Enraged that he would take it for granted.
Bradley has never even been swimming before.
We're not much different from Bradley, nor is Myron Rolle far off from the rich kid, albeit he probably isn't as whiny. Rolle has it all, and saying that he's extremely gifted is quite the understatement. He's not only athletic, but smart, charismatic, ambitious; the list goes on. Most teenage boys and quite a few grown men would give everything to be in his place, whether it be people that want to be as intellectually or athletically gifted as him. Rolle is extremely wealthy in terms of natural talents, while the rest of us aren't as well off as him.
But when most of us aspire to be like him, we don't want the work he has to put in, the pressure he has to deal with, the people that constantly pester him; we only admire the amazing and fantastic aspects of his life. We only want his fame, his fortune, his intelligence; we don't want his challenges, his obstacles, the insane amount of pressure he receives, or his haters (excuse my use of a slang word). Bradley doesn't want to clean the pool; he wants to swim in it, to have access to it, and most of all, to have the privileges the richer kid has.
When we aspire to be someone, when we admire someone for who they are or what they've done, we often fail at first to see the effort they've had to put to get there or the sacrifices they've had to make.
“Meeting” Myron Rolle at first, I too admired his talents and his accomplishments but upon closer examination of all the expectations he has, the work he must do, the people he must please, I'll take my simple high school soon-to-be college student life thank you very much.
DISCLAIMER: The story about Bradley was entirely fictional and was a name I chose on random, please don't run around campus asking every Bradley you encounter if he's extremely poor and offer him swimming lessons.
I like how you brought out a perspective that not a lot of people see. It really makes you think about how people feel about their hardships and success.
There was once a prince in feudal times that brought great advancements to Japan through his hard work and dedication. As a regent to the first empress of Japan, he tossed in concepts of Chinese culture and Buddhism to form Japan’s first constitutions and temples. He was well-revered and regarded as an ardent Buddhist, and his ingenuity brought success to Imperial Japan. While he spread good will and Confucian values across Japan, he also dabbled in good-will and generosity, to the point of people coming to him to see their desires filled. They likely cared little for his Buddha, and accepted his gifts and innovations to Japan with faces hiding deceit and greed.
As a species with a greater capacity of thinking, we’ve developed ways and inventions that eliminate the premise of need. With culinary arts and technology we eliminate hunger, and through architecture and handymen we create shelters to protect us from the rain and other elements. With the things necessary to sustain human life cleared up, our needs would practically cease to exist. In a primitive society, it would. When the human mind experiences the state of satisfaction, it is not long before the mind yearns for more.
We invent. We create. We still hunger. If the necessary prerequisites of staying alive are met, then nature has nothing else to challenge us with. We wonder and ponder, and we want more. From this, our desires form to shapes and our ingenuity matches it in due time with inventions and concepts that lay further foundation to the thing we call culture. It is by want we progress, not by need even though it may seem to be.
When the visions of a man don’t coincide with the life he currently lives, there’s a variety of things a person can do to attempt to change that. If things are beyond his power, it is because someone else’s achievements through want have swiped it before his bite into it. The desires of another person are easily ruined and warped through the desires of another. There can be an entire league of inventors, but only one can emerge to be the Thomas Edison of the era and invent electricity once. Achievements are essentially on a first-come-first-serve basis. When a competitor emerges victorious in meeting his personal desires, what fate belies those who dreamt a similar dream for themselves?
We aspire to be like those who have succeeded before us. To the ones who have achieved their desires and thus happiness, we look forward to. We revel in the past contributions of great men before us. In the present however, when the future is malleable and greatness exists among us, our desires change. We no longer want to accomplish something if a person has come and done it again, the integrity of it all is lost. There can be inventors all scrambling to invent electricity, but when our Thomas Edison is found, all attempts to innovate are tossed away because someone has done it already. The people that remain instead cling their broken desires onto those capable of greatness and ride on their coat-tails instead. With the by-product of electricity radios and toasters were invented after the light bulb, and up to now computers are created with foundations built on a master plan of success.
Not everyone is a Bill Gates or Steve Jobs however. Even after further desires are fueled by ingenuity before us, people can still miss the mark to do something amazing in their lives for themselves. They instead turn to others and rely on them for their success by enforcing their visions to those capable of fulfilling them. It is how society is built up, off the backs of others that toll to bring change to our cultures and systems. Rolle is a man of greatness and has visions of his own, but are intercepted by those who want more of him elsewhere for their own desires. The neurosurgeon wants him in a lab, the manager wants him on his team, and his relatives want him to be a strong political leader. Being tugged back and forth, he is the giant coat that everyone can hang onto to get a taste of happiness and success. It is a parasitic process, but our desires push towards it out of selfishness and compensation for missed achievement.
Rolle’s desires unchanged is one thing, his desires weighed down by the influence of others is another. It won’t be true to what he really wants if he follows the will of another, but for the situation at hand his decision can make or break him. Picasso became something different for art has the capability of free expression and lacks harder consequences than becoming a neurosurgeon or an NFL league player especially in our time. Unlike the abstract artist, Rolle is conflicted not only in the natures of the professions he seeks, but because of the extra baggage he carries along the way through people that didn’t make it like he did.
His consequences are high if he fails, mainly because of the load of others that have placed their faith and desires in him. In the tides of society, we favor the great but spit down on those that have tried but failed. Rolle can contribute to the hall of fame in his success, but he can also fall to grounds lower than his desires placed him at. Our society is inherently corrupt out of our capacity to exploit and corrupt out of desire. We want too much, and we bring the whole curtains down on ourselves out of natural habit. We worship the amazing but we scorn those who have fell from it. It’s a dog eat dog world, and it matters whether Rolle wants to follow his untamed desires or those modified by others who take advantage of the gifts he is capable of bringing out of selfish desire.
This is no enough.
Myron Rolle lives a life of constant challenging. He keeps working hard all the time without real satisfaction or peace. Sometimes we should stop at some point of success, so we could have time to enjoy, but not lose what we already have.
My uncle, who is my mom’s brother-in-law, owned a rabbit’s farm in countryside in China about twelve years ago. The most exciting thing for me was to visit his rabbit’s farm, so I could feed those cute rabbits with a whole bunch of carrot and cabbage on the lawn. I remembered my uncle was so successful during that time period; he often drove a fabulous car to pick me up at my house and visit the farm which was about sixty miles away from the town we lived.
Suddenly, my uncle lost that rabbit’s farm (it was suddenly to me because I was only seven, so I couldn’t remember details very clearly). When I asked my mom why my uncle didn’t pick me up to the farm anymore, my mom told me that my uncle’s farm was gone; all rabbits were sick and died. I was sad for a long time, for those cute rabbits, and also for my uncle.
Recent years, I asked my mom again why that rabbit’s farm was gone. This time, my mom told me more details.
In the first two years when the rabbit’s farm just built, my uncle earned a lot of money. Everything was going well; the farm, the rabbits, and his business. However, my uncle was not satisfied; he wanted more. So he bought in more rabbits to expand the size of the farm in order in get more money. At the same time, he invested almost all of his money into the stock market. That was the beginning of 21st century; the stock market in China was not developed yet. He lost all of money he had invested in a short time. That’s not the end, because the farm’s size got expanded, it was hard to control. Those rabbits were sick and then died. My uncle lost everything he had worked on.
He regretted. If he stopped at the point of success, he would not fail the business. If he was satisfied with all he had, he would not lose the money he earned. Rather than taking the risk, my uncle should keep all he had. Easy to satisfy is actually hard for human being who always has endless desire.
I really like they way you define Myron Rolle. Sometimes, we need to learn how to control our desires.
I like your post! and I kinda feel sad for the rabbits and your uncle; but they also have taught you an important lesson in your life...
Admittedly, it'll be a good luck to be the one that possesses unexpected talent and success in certain area; yet, if the success comes to me in an instant, which I never planned to have before, I don’t know if such “success” will be the success that I have been expecting. Every individual views success from different perspectives, as well as the ways people define it. Perhaps, in the eyes of bystanders, those talents are very enviable, just as a lottery dropping from the sky; but the talented person may not feel the same way as the outsiders feel about their gifted abilities. These advantages may not seem to suit my personal preferences; instead, to me, success is the thing that isn’t easy to come; I may have to strive for it with time, sweat, efforts, and persistence.
If we are to have our own dreams in mind waiting for us to fulfill, even though the distance between us and the terminal is far, in the end, when we actually accomplish our goals through attempts and efforts, the feeling will be different. During the process of pursuing those unmet goals, we will learn several lessons from the actual experiences; and the joy and sense of accomplishment brought by the hard work that we put into the process – all these things, are incomparable to the sudden successes that come to us on the halfway.
The dreams that I’ve never realized and the goals I’ve never met matter more than my new successes. If I’m successful in ways I didn’t intend to be successful, it is good; yet in some sense, it loses the meaning of exploring the things that I really mean to succeed at.
Although those dreams are not yet accessible, they are much more special than the success which I don’t even need to try hard to obtain it.
These dreams and goals are very necessary for my entire life since I planned and decided them myself; and they are the forces that push me toward my future.
They are also the things that I’m willing to devote my enthusiasm to the fulfillment.
I agree with the part that unexpected talent is kind of surprise. We feel lucky for having the unexpected talent! Thank you for your post!
I totally agree with you that we better focus on things that we are interested in.
Any preconceptions that Senior year would be easy have vanished. Personally, this past school year has been an ongoing struggle. I have had to take on new leadership responsibilities in Boy Scouts and percussion. I set out multiple long term goals for myself first semester: earn Eagle Scout, improve my SAT score, and finish college applications. At the time, I couldn't wait for second semester, thinking that I could relax once everything was over. However, I have found myself second semester studying for AP tests and experiencing pressure from my parents to do scholarships. The work never seems to go away.
In many ways, I feel like I am in Rolle's situation- I have pushed myself to succeed in each facet of my life. There is no enough. there is simply not enough time to truly be satisfied doing just one thing. However, I do believe that there is a balance- a way to work hard and achieve success in multiple areas. This compromise eliminates any regrets and "what could have been thoughts." If I were Rolle, I would go into the NFL draft, risk injury, and retire after a few years to pursue my goals as a neurosurgeon.
I agree! Whoever said senior year was easy, they were all wrong! But yes I completely understand you when you say that it feels like the struggle never leaves you. There is constantly something new being thrown at your face. Keep going! God job Chriss Short and straight to the point.
"The final one goes to the team captain, the one, the only, The Rock!", my coach handed me my trophy and I held it up cheering with the rest of my team. My years of practice dedication to the sport seemed to pay off, this was a moment to be proud of. We have won the "All Star" AYSO championship, and I knew I greatly contributed to it. I loved playing soccer and I was good at it.
When you are pushed into doing something you start hating it.
My coach and parents realized my potential and signed me up into club soccer, a whole new level of competition where the kids were all serious about the sport. Practice was harsh and would take away my weekends and study time, taking the fun out of soccer. I lost my inspiration to play, making my skills suffer as well. After a decade of soccer I decided to quit because it was no longer something I was able to enjoy. My parents, especially my dad, were disappointed because soccer was a very "Croatian" thing to do and they said I have been wasting everyone's time. I found out that my old goal of being a professional soccer player was just a barrier to many other opportunities I never knew about.
"A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects." -Robert A. Heinlein
After quitting soccer I felt this freedom I forgot about: free time. I started taking part in different activities and I discovered new sports I have learned to like much more. Instead of just soccer on my weekends I now mountain bike, hike, airsoft, boogie board, ATV, have time to hang out with friends, etc. Not only is it making my life more interesting, I can divide extra time for academic teams such as Advanced Robotics where I have to stay after school.
Instead of specializing, I try my best to be well-rounded and good in many things. As Heinlein says, we are not insects, people aren't intended to do only one thing. When I do the same thing for too long I get bored of it so I need to be good at multiple things to keep my life interesting. People opinions change throughout their lives so you always need a backup plan. If I continued to peruse my soccer dream I would have never found out that there are other thing I could like more, and I would probably stop liking soccer. Now I can set goals in many fields so if I cannot fulfill one I could still look to the others and be proud.
Great job! I can understand where you're coming from.
When I was a kid , I hated playing piano because I was forced to play and honestly it was terrible.
But , different then you, I started to love playing and I appreciate the fact that my parents forced me. Perspective comes with age I guess.
While I don't have comparable experience (my parents never really forced me into doing anything I didn't want to), I can really see your point. I can sort of relate to your experience with your father, though; I've always felt like mine was sort of disappointed I didn't pursue Biology with the same interest he did, even if he never said so to my face. That, and the sensation of free time; that is truly something glorious!
Well written post, Matej!
I think it's great that you're trying out a lot of other things and not just sticking with one. Opening yourself to new things is one of life's greatest opportunities.
haha I think its been very obvious how much you are annoyed by soccer now but maybe that's just me. I've noticed all the different things you have started doing since you quit and you seem much happier because of hit. Keep having fun
There is no enough.
The accuracy in this statement is haunting. Who knew such a simple phrase can encompass so precisely human nature?
“He who is not contented with what he has, would not be contented with what he would like to have.”
We have unlimited desires and limited resources. It's simple economics.
For certain people , life is a game of hours. Every minute, every second needs to be used effectively. People are wired that way. While the condition may be more prevalent for some, most people have the essence of that drive somewhere.
Doing Apache Sports Team, nothing is never enough. One take isn't good enough. One camera isn't enough. A three minute time limit isn't enough. Sacrificing sleep isn't enough.
Thee is no enough. It's never perfect.
Perfection is not attainable, but if we chase perfection we can catch excellence.
Being on the constant search for perfection isn't a mindset, but a way of life. Rolle may possibly live a life tormented by not only expectations for himself , but the expectations from others.
On a daily basis, I'm bombarded with timelines, commitments to coaches, and doubters. The mixture creates confusion in an art form that I used to consider simple and stress-free. Regardless, I'm at my house editing with a big goofy smile on my face every single time because it's still what I love to do. No one understands the paradoxical situation completely , but me.
As external view points, we can't begin to understand what feelings are truly being felt within his conscious. Rolle may actually enjoy himself with the trill of the chase and not so much the end goal as I do.
A sports show may not turn out for one reason or another, but I cherish the experience. Finding joy and contentment through success or failure is one of life's essential skills.
“Just tell yourself, Duckie, you're real quite lucky.”
― Dr. Seuss
Nice usage of quotes and concepts. Though it feels a bit scattered and could us a few more explanations here and there, it would ruin the set-up you have going on with your post, which is fine. Desires can affect our world so much.
Thanks for the great advice! In my head , the flow made sense. Next time , I'll remember to get an outside perspective!
I like how you're not afraid to be concise. I do have to agree with Jeffrey N. though, it would be nice if you could just use a little more connection betweeen the quotes.
Thanks! That's something I've never heard about my writing. It was really interesting seeing your perspective on it.
As a child I took ballet and gymnastics, two classes I loved. Although later, I out grew my "girly" phase I only grew interest in gymnastics. However my mom still made me out with ballet and I continued on with it. Around the same my mother entered me in a modeling contest which required me to go to many meetings and photo shoots. I remember constantly changing in the back of the car that was going to and from numerous locations. Although I hated listening to boring lectures and posing in itchy grass, modeling was actually pretty fun. After wards I would head to ballet, that was always a bore, then it was off to my very favorite activity, gymnastics. A few years later I moved from my hometown of Lima Ohio to Columbus and after that I didn't get to continue any of my classes or even modeling. After we moved my mom wanted to settle in first before signing me up for anymore classes and lessons, but we never got around to it. In middle school I took up a sport, softball. I was told I was really good at it too, but after eight grade I moved here and had more homework than ever before. Throughout the years, I've had many chances to succeed in many things when I was younger and when I was little, I especially wanted to become a gymnast. Even to today I still wish I could take more classes, but my parents tell me it's time for a “realistic”.
In the future, I plan to study in the field of hospitality management, but at the same time, I really want to pursue in my dream of becoming a gymnast, but its too late. Almost every gymnast trains their whole life for something like the Olympics and all I have is a few years of experience. I feel like I really should have continued in my gymnastics training because it was something I was passionate about. I think people should let others pursue in their dreams because if you wait it could be too late to do what you really love.
I like how your blog was so personal, I think it's so interesting how you were into gymnastics, I hope you find fulfillment and succes in hospitality management
The story is interesting and simple!! keep doing what you're doing. Great post!
Your post was very deep and interesting. You got to try so many things but you never got to see them through. It was a very good post and it related to the topic really well.
That’s not good enough. Work harder. Never give up! Do whatever you please.
These words are meant to motivate you. If it is from your teacher, siblings, or parents; it is supposed to help you get through the tough times in making decisions and to work through the problems we face in life.
Trying to keep other people happy and satisfied makes it harder on ourselves because we end up unhappy. I didn’t have to face this problem like Myron Rolle did.
My mom was the person who would always push me to do my homework, wake up for school, do my chores, but there was one thing she never pushed me to do. She never pushed me to become who she wanted me to be in the future. I guess I had it easy, but sometimes I needed a little help and a little push to help myself make decisions. If I needed help with making a decision, she would tell me, “do whatever you want to do, whatever makes you happy,” like that helped at all.
But one day, I asked her what she wanted me to be when I grew up.
“It’s not my life to choose what you want to be, do something that you're interested in and love to do for the rest of your life. If anything, you can always change who you want to be.”
Those words were such a relief to me. Not a lot of people have parents who let them make their own decisions. There is the “typical Asian parents” who want you to marry doctors or become one or maybe to become a lawyer and etc. There are so many more options in the world to choose from, but it does not mean that we would have to stick to one career, or passion, forever.
Why bother doing something wanted by other people rather than yourself? If you fail at something you chose to do, pick yourself up and change your decision or try again. If you keep trying, but lose everything by finally finding your passion then it would be worth it because the end results would make up for the times that the other people have doubted you. They have no right to tell you what you should do, especially if you have an exceptional gift. You wouldn't be selfish if you didn't want to maximize your gift, we would be the selfish ones who want you to do something that would entertain us in our lives with sports.
People should be allowed to make their own decisions in life because too much pressure from other people telling you what to do might make things worst. By thinking about the decisions to realize if what you're doing is the right thing allows us to think about the consequences with making the decisions we have chosen.
Life isn't about doing what other people think is best for you. Life is about the mistakes and lessons we learn from our decisions that we choose for ourselves to help guide our way through to reach our own personal goal.
I agree completely Julie, having someone who supports you no matter what your decision is is such a necessity! I'm glad you have such a supportive mother and I wish you the best of luck in your future endeavors! Great job!
Parents all over the world wants their kids to be successful in live, so they put them in classes outside of school to learn more things. Things such as piano, another langue, Swimming, or dancing. Somehow adults look at life as a race, if you are not good enough, you will get run over. So they pushed their kids to do whatever they think that will help them in the future. But are those really what the kids like? I bet many of them don’t like to do those things. Instead they want to play. Maybe that is how kids learn, and find out what is their passion.
When I was young, I watch many kids of my age go to classes on weekends or afterschool. Most looked like POWs going into a POW Camp. But when they got out, they looked happy and excited. I thought maybe those classes were fun and entertaining, so I wanted to go to one. I didn’t have to beg too hard for my parents to send me to one of those classes. And I was put into one of them soon after. I didn’t know that we can pick what subject we want to study, but either way I don’t choose. My mom picked writing class for me. There I was, sitting there ready to write. The thing is, I didn’t really want to write. It was half way into class time, and I am fast asleep. My mom was just right outside the window watching me, just like many other parents. It was hell for me, and the time seems to pass twice as slow. Finally the bell releasing bell rang, it was one of the sweetest sound I have ever heard. I stormed out of the classroom, and pulled my mom away from the class as fast as I could. Now I understand why those kids looked so happy to leave that place.
One week pasted and it was time for me to go to that dreadful writing class again. I begged my mom to not take me to that class again, but this time was much harder. My mom dragged me back to that class and I was there again. It was just the same as last time, torturing. By the third time I was in that class, I vowed silently under my breath that I will never come to this class again. The next time my mom tried to drag me to that class again, I didn’t go. I don’t recall exactly what I did, but I knew by heart that I was never there ever again.
One thing I remember very clear is what my mom said when I refused to go to that class again. She said that I will thank her when I got older. I bet many parents said that to their kids at least once. That might be true, and perhaps I will really thank you when I am older. I can see the future too, what's and what’s bad. "I see the future but live for the moment." (Pitbull) Sure, maybe I will thank you later, but for this moment, I just hate you for making me do things I don’t like.
To be gifted and talented in many areas and aspects of life is a gift, some may say, but it is simultaneously a curse.
As a child, I naturally wanted to be anything and everything. We all want to be a part of our favorite singing group that we know every single of their songs’ lyrics to, but at the same time we want to the discover for the cure for cancer. There’s being ambitious, and there is being realistic.
Though I was heavily involved in activities as a kid, I am very busy in things currently and may be even busier than I was in my younger years. I now am a leader in two clubs on campus (and President of one), a member of the varsity softball team, involved in the worship (music) team at my church, and an artist pursuing the major of Illustration come Fall 2013- all of this on top of my regular school work and chores/duties at home. Even though I am passionate in all that I am involved in, I still had to make a choice in what I wanted to do with my life, what I wanted to make a career out of.
Deciding to become an artist was a choice I made was something I pretty much glided into. Although I played baseball/softball nearly my entire life, I never truly thought that I was good enough to become a professional and never anticipated to make that my ultimate goal for an occupation. And even though I was pretty talented musically, playing the drums and singing a lot of the time, I again never took that as a job option for me in the future. Art has always been such a strong suit for me and was really one of the top things I was good at, so of course I pursued it as my career.
Since I have not yet read the outcome or “update” of Myron Rolle’s predicament, I do not know what he chose for his future. Although, I do believe that Rolle should choose what he wants for himself, not what others push him to do and what others implant in his mind as the right thing to do. He should have the decision to determine his own life and what he wants – being an NFL player or neurosurgeon.
In the world we live in we don’t have the time to dwell on dreams or what could’ve been. We have to take control of our lives and do what we must to succeed, or in other words survive.
After about 12 years of learning we have to decide where we want to be and how we intend to get there. Sometimes schools will require you to write a seven to ten page essay about it hoping that you’ll find a promising career. But what if the career we chose isn’t what we’ll be successful in? Then you drop it.
You can’t pursue a dead end.
To be successful at something shouldn’t be wasted. Even if it’s not your dream that you’ve had ever since you were a child, you have to come to terms with it and take the approach of starting your new path. We can’t all have our dreams come true and that’s the stark reality we all have to face. Even if we made goals to reach at some point in our lives, we have to let go of those too. I believe that success is more important than the goals we make for ourselves. If you can’t achieve your goals then what will you do? Dwelling on the fact that you can’t reach them will only distract you from where you should be going. You have a special skill that can take you to a promising career. Yes it’s a sacrifice one would have to make, to give up their dreams and goals, but it’s just one of the many steps in taking a realistic approach to a successful future.
First, thank you for ready my post, I suggest that when you get to college maybe find something to be a part of and involved in. You'll make many new friends and have many memories. And I really like how straight to the point your blog is. You really are able to convey the message you want people to ge from your words. Good job
Myron Rolle should be left to do what he wants, as should Paul Baumer.
Making them go where society is benefited most from reduces them to little more than commodities. And to stay philosophically consistent, applying utilitarianism to those two means applying it to us all. I’m sure we, to some degree, feel a moral obligation to do what’s best for the whole, but being forced to do so erodes our identities and leaves us less moral as a result. Morals become pointless when there is never a reason to exercise them, plodding along that singular path.
Society is no better at choosing for itself either. Mob mentality, the bystander effect, war...those are social constructs that it perpetuates and are detrimental to itself. It has no ability to decide what is ultimately good for itself. The people of that society aren’t connected to those individuals; they have no right to tell them how to conduct their lives.
It’s too much to ask people to sacrifice their autonomy and identity for those who don’t care about them as people. Rolle is a cluster of brilliance and hope; he is not someone caught between duty and self. Baumer is a body to be flung into the machine of war; he is not a tired veteran destroyed by the state he wished to protect.
After update: The way his story's turned out doesn't change anything, though it almost seems as if society is punishing him for making the choice to preserve himself.
When my sister was in Orchesis dance team, the president of the team was nominated as one of the rose court nominees. It was an unspoken rule for Orchesis members to even attempt to make it past the second round, but for some reason she decided to keep going. Maybe it was the adrenaline from making it past the preliminary rounds, the speech, the royal ball,
“ Wow I might actually have a chance at this. I might actually be the rose queen.”
Yes, it was a coveted role, thousands of girls tried out for this position. It was the one of the few chances that a girl coming from a conservative town like Arcadia had to fulfill a real life fantasy; for that one year she would be treated like royalty, and everyone would know her name, her face, her smile. This was the type of competition that every girl secretly wanted to be a part of.
So, yes, it is understandable that the president wanted to try out for the rose queen, even breaking the rules as the most scrutinized leader, because inside she had that secret hope of becoming the rose queen. However, there is a reason why Orchesis members aren’t allowed to pursue this competition after the first two rounds; as everyone knows the rose court members have absolutely no time for anything, barely coming to school, let alone a 24/7 time commitment to an extracurricular activity. Orchesis isn’t a seasonal group; they spend the entire year preparing for their big show at the end of April. Two weeks before the show, they stay at school everyday until 10 pm just running the show over and over again. Not only would the absence of one member throw off the entire show, the absence of the critical leader would throw off the entire group.
At first I was angry with this president, I thought,
“ How could someone be so selfish and let everyone else’s hardwork just go down the drain?”
Yes, if she left there would be many eager, more than willing faces waiting to snatch up the position of president. Even though the officer team is usually based upon talent and technique, the very best dancers of the company, this girl was picked more so for her personality. She had a very loud, outspoken personality, and she really knew how to command the attention of an entire room, but most of all, she was a leader and she would be able to carry a team that was full of young, new, inexperienced members. You can imagine how this would be extremely hard for other strong candidates, girls who had been dancing ballet since they were 3, girls who had professional training and basically dedicated their entire lives to dance.
Many of the girls were angry and disappointed with the actions of the president. I was angry for them. Many years later, I thought about it again, and I realized that I really didn’t have the right to be mad at her. It’s her life, it’s her decision, even though she was obligated to do this job, because she was good at it and the team depended on her to hold them up, it was her choice in the end. If I were on the team I would have rather had her leave me and pursue the title. The results don’t matter so much if the intention is wrong. If her heart wasn’t fully into it, then it might have else meant nothing. If she wanted to become the rose queen and abandon a team that needed her, it was up to her. The team would find some way to adapt and even though it wouldn’t be as strong as it could have been, it would still be alright.
She never ended up becoming the rose queen. She made it to the last round, but that’s it. It’s funny how things work, like it was meant for her to lead the team until the very end. She really wanted to make the rose court, but as time passed, she began to forget about her life or death determination to become rose queen. She grew more determined and dedicated to making the team the very best it could be, and the show was phenomenal, one that people remembered and talked about for a long time.
My parents catered to my whims while raising me. Sure, they occasionally carefully suggested course corrections here and there, and were sure to intervene when disaster was imminent, but for the most part they stayed out of the way as I grew up. They let me pursue my desires and interests at will; they never really forced a future on me in the way you occasionally hear about parents dictating the futures of their children. Nobody ever came up to me and said, “You're going to be a biologist like your father”. Nobody ever commanded me to be a lawyer, or to aim for med school. In no way has my life been optimized, or have I had my schedule perfectly tailored to utilize all of my potential.
My parents were right in doing so.
I have literally perfect SAT scores. I independently study AP material for my own amusement. The teachers said that the APUSH exam would be an insurmountable challenge without working hard for a year in the class; I scored a 5 by cracking open a prep book a week before the exam. Aside from some minor blemishes that can be explained by illness, my grades are straight A's.
I'm well aware that it seems arrogant to say this, but I achieved all of this with a bare minimum of effort. The only thing my parents ever told me was to always get A's; beyond that, they left me to my own devices. As a result, I never really pushed myself harder than necessary. For the most part, I've just cruised by these last few years (at least academically). Instead of studying advanced material in specific subjects, I went and broke my heart a few times. Rather than seeking to help through community service or peer tutoring or some other means of aiding others, I'd happily spend my time bouncing from one brief interest of mine to another. I never really stuck with any serious extracurricular activities until this year; after my brief run with cross country ended in the emergency room and a year of breathing issues, I simply wasn't interested.
I simply stood by and squandered my potential, because nobody ever stopped me from doing so.
I wouldn't have had it any other way.
Yes, I have regrets. I could have been on math team, or joined quiz bowl, or done a thousand other things differently during my high school career. Yet, my life experiences are what make me, well, me. We grow from the experiences we undergo; different experiences may have theoretically led to a different version of me, some mirror-Scott who turned out to be far more skilled in chess and physics than I currently am, but he wouldn't have been me. I'm for the most part happy with who I am. The freedom my parents granted has allowed me to explore a vast variety of interests that, had my schedule been tighter, I would have never even discovered.
If I wasn't free to make my own decisions, I would have never joined cross country. I wouldn't have met the people who are today some of my closest comrades. I never would have explored chess and fallen in love with the intricacies of the game. I never would have been able to spend as much time studying history and participating in history bowl as I have. I never would have discovered my interest in space, rockets, and aerospace engineering. I never would have gone down my current path in life.
I feel pity for somebody like Myron Rolle. I'm envious of him, as I am of most people with natural talent or abilities exceeding my own, but at the same time, I pity him. Too many people push him in too many directions for him to ever truly hope to be able to achieve all of his dreams; he may have been blessed with raw talent and potential, but he wasn't blessed with enough time to fulfill both his own dreams and those others have for him. At some point, he had to choose, and he wound up choosing his own dreams. He pursued an NFL career, knowing that it could lead to the destruction of his other dreams for the future, knowing this choice was contrary to the wishes that many had regarding his future.
That aside, isn't pursuing our dreams (within reason) what our society is all about? America was built on an ideal of freedom of individual choice. Do we tell artists to stop producing art because it isn't functional? Do we tell entrepreneurs to stop dreaming of better futures because the existing present works? Do we tell Kasparov and Anand that chess is a meaningless game and tell them to find real work? We don't because we, as a society, value individual choice. A society that forces people to go against their dreams is a society that is no longer worth maintaining in the first place.
In the end, it's all about freedom. I was free to choose my own future; Rolle chose to embrace freedom and ignore what pressure others may have been putting on him to abandon his aspirations of becoming a professional athlete. Neither of us may be better for having wasted our potential in some way, but in doing so, we have pursued our dreams, and I'd take that any day over not having the option to do so.
I thought that Myron Rolle was extremely lucky to be granted such talents and gifts, but after putting myself in his shoes, I’ve come to think otherwise. Having the ability to be an all-around person who is great at everything and succeed at everything you throw yourself at is wondrous, but the pressure to decide what it is you’re going to do is an extremely hard decision.
There is so much that people expect in Rolle, but I believe there is only so much he can do despite how intelligent he is. I can only imagine how difficult it must be to be clueless of whether which path is better which is why I can feel the pressure he is feeling.
People including myself would expect a lot out of a person like Rolle, and if he were to attempt and satisfy every person’s wants, there would be just too much weight on his shoulders. Kobe is great and godlike but can we expect him to always hit that buzzer-beater and be the savior who rescues the Lakers whenever they are in a slump? He is awesome, but what he does won’t always make you happy. Nobody is capable of making everyone happy and no matter how great Myron is he isn’t either.
Which has made me come up with my one and only decision: Do whatever you want no matter what it brings you. Whether that is becoming a neurosurgeon or pursuing your career as a pro football player, failure or success: It is up to you.
I know what it feels like to make someone proud by doing something you aren’t fully committed to because you aren’t in love with it. Once I was first introduced to Thai instruments, I could say that I was actually better than most. I liked it at the time and my mom knew I could go far with it which is why she began forcing me to attend practice every week and stay as late as possible until I mastered it.
Despite that, over time I just couldn’t. It wasn’t my thing as I got older, but it began becoming something I did just for her and not myself. After my years making my mom proud and playing instruments, I decided one day that I would actually throw it all away no matter what she felt. I am heartbroken to look back at my past decision, but glad I made it at the same time. Doing something you’re good at but don’t like just to meet some other person’s expectations just won’t work.
Just as we see that Myron should use his intelligence to become a neurosurgeon, and not jeopardize it from doing a dangerous sport such as football he might not be happy.
Myron must settle on one or the other no matter how great he may be at both, and put his full efforts to it. Making that decision will be hard but what he chooses is what he will be most great at. Looking back and regretting your decision is harsh, especially because you can’t undo what you’ve done. He must think hard, think right and the decision he makes should be his best. Some people will like it and some won’t, but at the end of the line it is his life and also his choice.
I agree completely. It's hard to put yourself in Myron's shoes and even harder to feel bad for him. He seemingly has it all, but when we, as a society, bombard these people with our own dreams it's impossible for them to make a decision. I think you and I are on the same page when it comes to this.
I also agree with this post, and I love the examples you used with Kobe. Your writing style is flowing and easy to understand. Keep up the good work
As the first-born child in my family, expectations have been set high for me since day one.
Growing up, I was pushed to do anything and everything my parents could get my hands on. For almost ten years, my parents poured thousands of dollars towards private tutors, instructors, and mentors in the widest array of activities imaginable. I played the piano, I played tennis, I played the violin, I took art classes, I experimented with the tenor saxophone, I played the clarinet, and I was tutored in subjects like mathematics, physics, and writing. I was spread so thinly over these ten agonizing years, and because of this, I lacked any focus in certain areas that I actually cared about. As I practiced fun pieces on the piano, my mom would yell at me to get back to studying for the next day’s chemistry test. And when I would be studying for said tests, my dad would force me to practice my myriad of instruments. I was lost, confused, and everything that I did seem to be calling for me from every imaginable direction. But what would, or could, I choose?
It wasn’t until the beginning of high school that I realized where my true passions resided. To both me and my parents’ great surprise, my commitments seemed to dwindle down naturally. Nobody told me what to drop, and nobody told me what to keep. I decided that after eight years of playing the piano, I had had enough, so I stopped. My violin skills were mediocre at best, so that commitment dropped as well. I could never get my stroke right in tennis, so after almost a year of taking lessons, I decided that it wasn’t for me.
But for those activities that I did choose to pursue, I made sure that they were those I truly cared about. And because I truly cared about them, I gave them everything I had. I loved playing in the marching band along with being in a symphony orchestra, so I worked tirelessly to be the best clarinet player I could be: both by my own standards and those of my peers. FBLA, an organization that I could have never foreseen myself in prior to my freshman year, drew me in because of its inspirational teachings and the countless friends I made. So that stuck as well. And finally, I chose academics. Academics were always important to both me and my family, so I pushed myself in every class I took in order to best prepare for my future in college and beyond. I was determined to fulfill my lifelong dream of attending a top-tier college, securing a well-paying job, and eventually raising a happy family.
And so here I am. Just four years after having a schedule that once resembled a laundry list rather than an actual life, I have come to define myself through just a few commitments that I truly value. I am not the “Renaissance man” that I once thought I would be. But in retrospect, I realize that I was never pushed to be such a person. My parents pushed me into so many different areas not to spread me out thinly, but to experiment with as many potential options as possible. I was to try as many things as I could in hopes of one day figuring out what were right for me. I had to find the right fits, the few commitments that I knew I could pursue for years to come. Fortunately, I was able to identify my callings in only a few short years.
Some people aren’t as lucky. People as multitalented and brilliant as Myron Rolle are lauded by their peers, but what others often fail to understand is the internal struggle they must endure. By excelling in so many fields, people like Rolle must continue to meet the many expectations of both themselves and those that judge them from the outside. What results in the end, they realize, is that they can’t have it all. They must start making sacrifices, decisions that they must live with for the rest of their lives. The question is, what direction should they take when they love and excel among so many different areas?
There are many considerations one must take when they make their final decision. Ultimately, however, the choice should come from the heart. When one excels at so many disciplines, nobody will fault him/her for choosing one direction to pursue to the very end. Whether a person like Rolle decides to become a professional football player or a neurosurgeon, he will be remembered and respected among his societal peers. In the end, his biggest critic is himself. Will he be able to live with his decision? Will he be satisfied with all that he accomplishes in his career? Will he have any regrets?
Choosing between one passion and another is undoubtedly one of the hardest decisions in life, but it is absolutely necessary. If Rolle tried to balance his love for both neuroscience and football, he would have never had the full mental or physical capacity to reach his complete potential. Rolle could be the most distinguished scholar. He could also become the most respected athlete. But in these days, there would have been no hope for him to be both.
When making choices like these in life, we must realize that we can’t always have it all. There is no such thing as having everything on the menu. But for those options we can choose, we must cherish them for a lifetime.
We must pursue them to our fullest capacity.
Ah, tough parental expectations. I've seen that a bit too often in Arcadia. Sometimes it helps, sometimes it hurts, you know?
Anyhow, I do like how you pointed out how miserable it really is to be so excellent in multiple fields; it really would be horrible to have the expectations and dreams of so many people riding on your shoulders and conflicting.
I really did like how you wrapped up your post, though. You finished excellently with that strong closing remark about pursuing the options we have in life to our utmost; I fully and heartily agree!
Great job, Allen!
People often think that education is what make you the person and how well you will succeed in life, well that’s not one hundred percent true but I could not say it’s not true. Back when I was in elementary school my mom keeps brainwashing me about the colleges that i need to get into in order to get a good job and be rich like her. The thing is I’m not into reading or studying at all back when I was little. I would always get bad grades and my mom will always get mad at me. Then eventually she gave up and just sends me to a tennis school, where all you do is play tennis. You start at 6:40 in the morning to 8 then you go to class for around four hours then you start playing again after lunch. After three years of that you will be automatically transfer to a high school and eventually getting in a good college because of your tennis’s skills.
In the story Rolle’s decisions on both of his career that he loved, I believe that he should pick either one of them and not go for both. There is a very high chances of him failing at both then failing at one because if he’s focused on one of them then the succeed rates are much higher than he focusing on both of them. The job you get, how much money you make does not come from what college you go to. But i think that education is very important for me so I choose to come to the America to actually try to educate myself and actually learning something in return.
Things do not always plan out the way you do in fact things will almost never turn out the way you want them to be. Whether is a broken relationship, the first C you ever got in your life, getting reject from colleges, or maybe something simple like you cannot turn in your homework in time because you fell asleep while doing it and next thing you know it, it’s time for school. In life things don’t really turns out how we planned it, but when it does you have to hold on to it and never let go. When opportunities knocks it will be a secret code that only you will know.
I know how you feel, because when I get bad grades, my parents will yell at me too. It is more important to find something you love to do and not letting other people to choose for you.
victor~~~i really agree with what u said and i think you choose the right thing
If I was successful in ways I didn't intend to be successful, I would not feel the happiness inside my heart. My goal will never be met even I have new successes, but the new successes can be the experiences to achieve my goal.
If I met goal, it doesn’t mean that my life is over. We can always look for new goals after we achieved one.
When I was in middle school, I had to make two choices.
I wanted to play sport, but I had to make a decision between baseball and tennis. I had more experiences with baseball, but I didn't have love with it. My parents let me joined the youth baseball team, and I played for the entire time in elementary.
Since I had the experience of playing baseball, my parents wanted me to continue in middle school, but I wanted to play tennis more than continue with baseball. I read a comic book called Prince of Tennis, and they are using very cool skills to defeat their enemies. This comic book inspired me to want to play tennis.
My parents didn’t accept my choice, because then they would have to pay additional cost to take the tennis lesson. A beginner joining the tennis team can be laugh by other people. I wanted to make my own decision, but I couldn't. I had to accept it. I continued baseball with pain in the middle school.
Although it was short, it got straight to the point. The prince of tennis also inspired me to play tennis. Great post
Sometimes thing don't work out exactly as you plan but maybe if you reflect back on this years from now it will be alright! great post Daniel!
What do you do when you love two things at once?
As humans, sometimes we cannot control what we are passionate about. It’s inevitable for us to love and want more than one thing in our lives. We’re greedy. We’ll do anything to be able to pursue what we love. And when we finally get what we want, do we stop? Or do we want more?
Softball was love at first sight. I’ve loved the game since the very first time I laid eyes on it. Softball is a beautiful yet complicated sport. It’s a sport that tests both your physical and mental abilities to play. Not only does it require skill, but it requires the heart of an athlete. Everything you have goes out to playing. It tests just about every single part of who you are. There will always be times of frustration and times of success. Our ups and downs are what make the game so lovable. Things will not always be perfect but we learn to accept that fact and work with whichever way the game takes us. That’s what makes softball so interesting; you’re able to come back to even in times of doubt.
Theater thrust itself upon me. It popped up out of know where and just clung to me. I’ve always known Theater since I was young; I just never paid full attention to it. It wasn’t until high school that I realized how much a passion I had for theater. Theater was my escape. It allowed me to transform myself into different characters in different worlds. I could be whoever I desired to be. Everything I’ve done has taken countless amounts of time and energy to complete. It’s an art that allows you appreciate it for what it is. Theater is not just about memorizing lines, it’s about the emotional depths you enter trying to understand the heart of each character.
Softball is my passion.
Theater is my passion.
I’m passionate about two completely separate things. Both create very different lives of the way one would live. I’ve never been able to give up one or the other. I can’t and I won’t. Softball has always been my main goal. The work and effort I put in has all been to play the game I love in college. Theater was an extracurricular that still finds ways to steal my heart.
Soon, I will move on to college and I’ll be playing both softball and running cross country. I love both theater and softball and I wouldn’t be who I am without either of them in my life. But know I’ll take on another sport I love doing: cross country.
Again I’ll have to face the confusion of what I desire more. Just because we are passionate about more than one thing, doesn’t mean we should ever give up on it. There’s a reason for why we love doing two things. Even with all the struggles of feeling torn between the two, I still found a way to do what I’m passionate about.
I’ll never give up on what I love. I will continue to pursue and love two things at once.
I really enjoyed reading about your passion for two of the greatest things to have influenced your life. It makes me wish I had joined something that I could have loved in the same way you love Theater and Softball.
I love your opening statement. So simple, yet so true. I had a passion for sports and music and know what it's like to have to give one of them up for the other. Best of luck to you in college!
What a great defiant answer! I definitely agree that we should be able to pursue as many things as we want and chase after all our passions, and I'm glad you've decided to chase after not just one. Great post Dom!
Since I did not see anyone try to solve the song riddle I think I will give it a shot. I'm not sure about my accuracy, I might be completely off, but this is how I interpreted the song list:
The first song is "Last Know Surroundings," so it is a soldier leaving for the battlefield which is a completely different environment than what he is used to. The song is by Explosion in the Sky, the band name relates to bombs and explosions soldiers might experience on a battlefield.
The second song, "Vexed and Glorious" is about soldiers being vexed, or confused about the war, but they feel the glory for serving their country.
Waiting to Panic is about the two fronts, waiting to "Break the silence" when one side starts shooting again. Once the battle continues the soldier is "thinking" and "running" then "standing" as everything is just a blur.
The next song, "The Way", states "'Cause all that I've died to save has slipped right though your ears and into its grave", showing that soldiers die for nothing really and their death doesn't affect the final outcome.
"No Way" could be the soldier trying to reject believing what is going on around him thinking it is all a dream.
"That's No Way to Get to Heaven" talks about how you have to fight and stay alive for the lover you left at home.
"Fidelity" talks about the lover's loyalty to the other one and will wait for their return. Also Regina Spektor is Russian, and Russian and Germany used to be enemies .
"Lover's Lie" is about a lover lying to the other because they are not sure if they will ever return.
The final song "Exile Vilify" is about the soldiers PTSD, "Have you given up, Does it trouble your mind?"
I am looking forward to find out the real meaning.
Everyone should have their own shot at their own life. A square cube will not fit in a triangle shape hole no matter how much to try to force it. Its not wrong for a parent to guide their child in the right direction but ultimately what they want out of their life is their choice. My mom is a very caring and loving mother and always wanted the best for me. She always introduced new things to me as a child but never made me stick with it. However whenever I did find something I liked, I stuck with it for myself. What I like to do was never ruined because I was never forced to do it. I believe if my mom had forced me to take art classes I wouldn’t be as passionate for art. Work is only work when you don’t enjoy it. Am whenever my mom told me to do something I felt like the fun being sucked out of it. Whatever it was instantly became a chore or work. Sometime a parents could only teach their child so much.
“The creation of something new is not accomplished by the intellect but by
the play instinct acting from inner necessity. The creative mind plays with the objects it loves.”
- Carl Jung
I have a cousin who is homosexual. As he grew up his parent’s never thought that would be the case. As far as they were concerned, he was being raised to be heterosexual. When my cousin finally came out with his secret, my aunt and uncle was shocked. They denied the fact that their son was gay and tried to make him change. However no matter what his parent’s said he stuck with his own choice. Now he has a great job, his own house, and living very well with his boyfriend. I believe if he had listened to his parents and pretended to be someone he was not then his life would have been miserable. Everyone should have their own choice of what they want in life because its the only way we would be able to actually live it.
“Creativity is an area in which younger people have a tremendous advantage, since they have an endearing habit of always questioning past wisdom and authority.”
- Bill Hewlett
As a child, your mind is filled with creativity and imagination however it would be limited if parents told you what to do. You would not have that mind set to explore and wonder.
Man, you should have posted earlier. You clearly have a lot of meaningful things to say on this and I wish more people could have had the chance to read it. This prompt really hit home for a lot of people in our class, but you didn't just connect it to yourself, you connected it to your cousin as well.
This is similar to what I said, in that we shouldn't try to control what people do with their lives, but I didn't even think of people coming out. That was a clever and very considerate connection for you to make. To think of him really shows that you care. I like the way your mind works, man.
I'm glad your cousin didn't conform to what his parents expected of him. It's a brave and difficult choice to make and I am fairly moved by it. I hope he and his boyfriend are happy.
My parents had always given me the opportunity to try what I wanted to try. I am blessed because they had the capacity to do so, and allowed me to as well. There is an abundance of activities I’d tried to become proficient at, and barely any of them, if any, from my childhood carried into my teenage years, I’m thankful I was able to expand my mind to new things and find what I was good at.
Freedom of choice is a prospect I will stand by for as long as I live. I believe a parent’s role is to guide a child in the right direction, and to fall under the category of the “right direction”, a few requirements must be met. For one, they must provide and encourage safe activities as to pique the interests of children and help them meet their goals. Second, they must lead them away from self-destruction as best they can, and by that, I mean winding up on the side of the street. The rest is where the parents let the magic happen.
Restriction brings misery. Who are we as a society to force an individual to utilize their proficiencies for our projected betterment? It’s not selfish to withhold one’s own talents that may contribute to society. It’s selfish as a society to force an individual to abide by what we need out of them, to restrict them from accomplishing what they are truly capable of. We would be simply setting them on the path of depression and anguish. As a society, we need to encourage the personal successes of our own, not to use them for our own purposes. We need to guide individuals only away from self-destruction through irresponsibility and immaturity.
All we, as a people, want to see from those who are multitalented, are their success. Nothing more, nothing less, just to see them at their best.
I really liked your blog! I'm really glad you got to try out different things when you were younger. I'm glad you got to grow up doing something you enjoy!
I totally agree with you that we better focus on things that we are interested in.
Reality is cruel; sometimes we are doing things involuntarily.
I hate to force myself to do things I do not want to, especially after I spend six hours and forty five minutes concentrating in school. I have no choice, I want a job. My mother raise me and provide me things, as a single mother she does her best to help me. I have things that I want like clothes, a new laptop etc. and I do not want her to pay them for me. I can guarantee that she will buy them for me if I asked, but I know that means she may eat less or work extra hours in order to save money to make me satisfied. I never understand those things until I saw my credit card bill one day. I knew I dragged her down. Without me, she can get married with any man that will able to make her happy for the rest of her life. She did not however; she did not because of me. She worries about the life after when I have a step-father. Anything can happen when living with another anonymous man; real life stories even include daughters and their biological fathers.
I thank her as always, I am the lucky one to have a mother who did and does so much for a daughter whose grade isn’t the best, not the popular kind anywhere, not even a sweet heart.
Soon after I reached sixteen, I constantly look for jobs around the neighborhood. I know she does not need my money; part time jobs cannot earn a lot too. With a hope to at least reduce some of my own spending, I start my hunt for jobs.
Speaking of reality, I am not that optimistic, instead I am a little emo like when I am along. Most of the jobs around the area are waitress, runners, or cashiers that require communication skills. You also have to put a smile on your face when serving the customers. After a day in school, no one wants to service other people. When a customer does not like his order, you have to apologize even it is not your fault.
I tried my best but none of them really passed the internship period. Others did not give me a chance at all.
For this assignment I compare myself to Paul and pretend the job market is the war. I found out it is worth resisting sometimes but definitely not most of the time. I want to resist especially when those customers were rude to me. However my mind is clear, I know I don’t have the power to fight back, I know I don’t have the power to handle the aftermath.
I understand him, but I do not support. I know where I am so in terms of resisting, I chose to stay quiet and no offense.
I need that job. I don’t want to see my mother come back with tired back and dark circles around her eye.
Same for Rolle, NFL did not worth the risk. He spends lots of times with football every day, it must minimize his time to stay with his family, and it must take his time to do something he wants. He wants a better life, he cannot fail because if he fail, he will lose everything, money, fame and power. He does not have a choice and no one gives him one. There is not enough, people always want more. Greedy nature of humans is indispensable. What if he fails? What will happen when he quit? Family got destroyed? You never know. He is successful today, but what if he made another different decision when he was young? Will life be different? There is no way to quit; it is a one-way street with no u-turn available.
Not everyone is good at what they love. I can say no one loves soccer more than I do. But talent wise I can’t say I am the best. As a child I wanted to become a famous soccer player. I realized that I can’t do that early enough to have fun with soccer. I realized that fun won’t get me any success. And since success is what determines how you are viewed in society, I can’t chase the dream as a soccer player.
I believe we’re all built to be successful in something. Nobody is brought to this world completely talentless. That would just be unfair. Some people are successful in the field that they enjoy being in. Some are not. I wish that society wouldn’t determine success on the scale of salary and accomplishments. Reality is, that will never be the case.
Being stubborn about what you want to with your future without realizing what your true potential is can ruin it. Myron Rolle is that rare exception where someone excels in two conflicting professions. In this case, choosing what’s right for him is very important. None of those talents matter in the end if he doesn’t end up successful. I personally want to be successful in the field that I love. However if it doesn’t turn out that way, whatever seems to be the best fit for me should be my career choice. There’s no reason to stay in a profession that I cannot perform at a high level.
Without a dream to chase, life would be meaningless. However, blindly chasing that dream could potentially ruin what you are really capable of. Getting an A in World Lit should be every student’s dream. But just doing the work for the A won’t help anyone. You have to use the work as a building block to unlock the future you. Not for a grade. Don’t let the future you be trapped inside because of your stubbornness.
I agree with you that everyone should be good at something. No one is talentless. Great post!
Only users who are logged in may leave comments on this blog. Please follow the link below in order to log in.
Click here to log in