Wednesday, December 21, 2011

One More Essay to Write This Week

By Patrick O'Connor

Seniors, I have some news-- college is going to have to wait.  You’ve been drafted.

With this economy, Santa and Hanukah Harry have had to consolidate their workshops. Banks aren’t sure the merger will work, so the pre-holiday line of credit they need for inventory is being withheld, and the Federal government has refused to intervene.  The globe’s gift-giving leaders are offering community service credit for anyone willing to pitch in and close the gap—and what college in their right mind is going to look past a letter of recommendation from the Big Two?

You’re busy with college applications, but helping out SC and HH won’t take very long—in fact, you don’t even have to leave your keyboard.  Put your college essays aside for a second, and start a new document; the gift you need to give is heading to your high school counselor.

OK, now look—language like that is going to move you to the top of the Eternally Naughty list. I know it’s not all that cool to come out and ask for a present, and while this isn’t an easy thing to do, your counselor deserves this.  I know some of you think they haven’t been all that much help with your college plans, but if you had 435 kids, I bet you’d have trouble remembering their birthdays, let alone where they’re applying to school...

…and don’t worry if you don’t know what they want—I have that all covered.

Vacation’s coming up, and with buddies home from college and family in from out of town, you may have to make some choices that were clear in Health class, but less so when they’re right in front of you.  What your counselor wants this holiday season if for you to stick to your guns; college or no, you’ve got a future that will only be possible if you’re around to live it, and knowing you’re willing to do your part will make your counselor’s  holiday.

The gift comes in two parts.  First, copy and paste the following few lines, fill in the blanks, and e-mail it to your counselor (their e-mail is on the school Web site, just in case it’s not on your address list):

“Dear Counselor (putting their name in would be a nice touch, but do what you can):

Just so you know, I’ll take care of myself over the holidays.  When I hang out with my college and high school buddies, I’ll use my head, and I’ll make sure somebody sober drives me home—same thing with family events.  In fact, if Brad and Angelina split, and one of them pulls to the curb in a Porsche and asks me to go clubbing with them, I’m checking their BAC first—while I get a phone photo of me leaning on the Porsche, of course.

I hope this helps you sleep through the night over break. I’ll see you in two weeks.


(sign here)”

I can see Santa and Harry smiling already—better yet, so is your counselor

Oh, right—the second thing you have to do?  Mean it.  They may not know your favorite color, but counselors didn’t go into this profession to do paperwork, and some of the work they’ve done to create opportunities for you is work you’ll never know about.  Your school counselor may not be up there with Santa and Harry, but they’ve kept an eye out for you in their own way; think of this as their milk and cookies for the holidays, and we’ll all be better off.

Especially you.

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