Take a Chance


We've all been there. Right or left? Stay or go? Text back or wait? It's time to be decisive, don't tiptoe into the pool - jump!

Let me tell you a story:

It's about my senior year of high school. 

It was the second semester and I was checked out. I'd decided to join the Airforce a couple of months prior so all fucks went out the window.

In the beginning of the semester, we were assigned three things. Read a 26-page "essay", read One Flew Over the Cuckoo Nest and write an essay using those two sources about crafting fiction.

Can you guess which of the three I did?

Absolute Zero

I did none of it. Fuck it, why should I?

Well, come to find out, that project was about 30% of our grade.

The year was coming to an end and that one project was dropping my grade from a B+ to a D.

A Last Ditch Effort

I wrote the essay. But, I wrote it my way. Below is the full essay unedited. 

The Essay:

To start, I would like to in no way disrespect you with this essay. In fact, you are by far one of my favorite teachers I have ever had at Barlow. In fact, your class may be my favorite class just because it is so unique and different every day. However, after the first semester of senior year, I stopped trying in school. This is for a number of reasons, one being that I was a second-semester senior. The second is because I am not going to college. Instead, I’ve enlisted in the Air Force. So after I made that decision, grades really haven’t mattered since. When you assigned this essay in the middle of the semester, I had every intention of doing it. However, there were a couple of obstacles in the way of completing this essay. The first was that I hadn’t read the Paris Review or One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. I could always Sparknote them but because of the above reasons I just didn’t. The second reason the essay never got done is because I was just too lazy to write it. However, since the essay is about fiction and the said crafting of fiction, I would like to write a fictional story about my life if I had turned this essay in on time.
In this fictional story, let's pretend I read the interview and the book. The night before it was due I decided to start writing the essay. I start the essay out with a cookie cutter introduction about the crafting of fiction and how certain authors, like Ken Kesey, do it. In the paragraphs to come, I bring up certain examples from each of the texts. In addition, I talk about a TED talk or two. Then, after spending an hour and a half making sure the paper that I can truly care less about is the right length, I log onto turnitin.com. I turn in the paper and never think about it again. I live my life normally and a month later you hand back my essay which most likely got a B. I continue on with my life until the end of senior year where I will never have to go to high school again.
The only difference between my fictional story and reality is that I spent about 2 hours more of my life writing an essay in which I could be more indifferent about. Looking back on it, it really wasn’t a lot of time to get the essay done, however, I can’t change the past. 
The reason I’m giving you this instead of the essay you assigned is because I wanted to write something different. In addition, the essay is so late anyways that you will probably give me an F. So instead of wasting 2 hours now and getting an F on something I don't care about. I spent 45 minutes on an essay that I will always remember long after high school.

It was only a page.

The requirements for the essay were 5 pages 1.5 spacing. I gave my English teacher a 1 pager - 4 months late.

Keep in mind, we didn't always see eye to eye on many things anyways.

How to get an A-

She gave me a fucking A! 

I couldn't believe it. I showed the girl next to me who laughed and was kinda pissed at the same time.

You Can Only Fuck Up Once

At the end of the day, you'll have to make a decision. I'm not saying don't think but don't be trapped in the middle of the road.

Don't endlessly bobble back and forth.

I don't know how many times I've said fuck it in my 5-year military career but I can count on one hand the number of times it's backfired.

And guess what? It didn't have any long-lasting effects. Life is long. Time really does heal all wounds.

Make a decision, say fuck it every now and again and just do your best. That's all you really can do.

That's it - Thanks for Reading!

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