It is officially “mid-term review” week, meaning not only do I have an arsenal of homework to do before the end of next week, but I also need to study the finer parts of employment law and civil litigation. Being a complete overachiever, I will be unhappy with anything less than an A on these exams. Of course, any old A is not good enough for me much of the time. You might say an A is an A, but in my mind, I want to get 100% on everything, which we all know is just not possible! No one is perfect, everyone has room for improvement. Yet when I get 98 ½ points out of 100 on an exam, I am the most likely person to go talk to the instructor to try and at least get a ½ point more on it – especially if it is an essay question. My handwriting is horrendous, so the fact that we have to write essay answers out with a pen rather than type them, often does not serve me well. Last semester part of one of my essay answers should have read “interpretation of the Constitution BY the Supreme Court”, but instead I wrote something that looked like “interpretation of the Constitution OF the Supreme Court.” The teacher put a nice question mark and asked me to explain what the Constitution of the Supreme Court is? Right – it DOESN’T exist. The instructor in my scenario above could have easily “given” me the points by assuming I meant to write something different. But what if I didn’t? What if I really didn’t know what I was talking about? What is the moral of the story here? (Ok, I am not sure there IS one – but I am going to try and conjure one up!) In order to do well on an exam, you MUST study. In order to succeed in the work world, you must excel at your job.
Although, if what I am saying above is true, why is it no longer “fair” to keep score at young children’s soccer games? Why does everyone get a trophy and told everyone is a winner? I understand I might sound jaded. You might think that I don’t understand the reason why some don’t want our children to be so competitive at a young age because we don’t want our children to have hurt feelings, but I also take issue with this. In some ways, will this “everyone’s a winner” idealism leave them ill prepared for the real world? For college and for the work world? Will they grow up to think that no matter what everything will work out ok because otherwise it wouldn’t be fair? And perhaps even think if it doesn’t go their way, they can do something to fix it, whether it is sign a petition or complain about it on Facebook? It’s something to really think about, isn’t it?