Dylan Liguori 10/30/13
Dr. Ellis EN 101 Understanding Literature
Lessons to be Learned
Lessons are to be taught, and lessons are to be learned. Learning to take helpful advice is good, but making it flourish with your own ideas and beliefs is what you must truly learn to do. “Directions for Resisting the SAT” by Richard Hague, “First Practice” by Gary Gildner, and “Thank You Ma’am” by Langston Hughes resemble this topic all too well. When going to the event on the project in Haiti in assisting mostly the impoverished children by creating better schools, dining areas, beds for the kids to sleep in, and all the other necessities to live a decent life, I took some time to think about what they were actually doing, and taking time out of their own stressful and time consuming lives and helping those in need, or lack guidance. Helping others in their flaws, and accepting that we too have flaws and realizing there is fixing to be done is the first stepping stone to achieving the Jesuit values of extending yourself to the betterment of others.
“Directions for Resisting the SAT” is a poem that helps us realize that we don’t always have to fit in and live a “normal” life. Taking the SAT is a part of many teenager’s careers when trying to get into college, and many stress about bad scores and nervousness. What Hague is trying to convey is although the SATs are somewhat an important step, it doesn’t predict how you will do in life. Many people will probably disregard this argument, but I believe it is a valid one in the sense that it’s only a test to measure your ability on how you will perform on your first years in college. It doesn’t mean if you get a 2400 you’ll leave Harvard with a 4.0, and if you get a 1200 you’ll go to your local community college and probably drop out within the first semester. Worrying will only make things worse, Hague wants us to relax, do our own thing, but don’t slouch around, work hard and earn what you’re working for.
“First Practice” is a poem in which many people can look at and really connect with. Going to your first sports, instrument, or dance class can be exciting and what the coach does to the youngsters is instills tenacity and the will to be the best within all of them. Kids don’t maybe realize what great a gift they’re receiving if they have a coach like this, but those who do seize the day and grasp firmly to the message of their superior, then they have contracted greatness, and will live by this way to achieve whatever they want.
In “Thank You Ma’am” a young kid, probably very poor tries to rob the ladies purse, but gets caught up, and maybe it was for the best. The lesson she taught this young boy is one he will never forget. She was able to care for not only a thief, but one who would steal from her shows her forgiving spirit and care for other beings. When they arrived at her house, the boy had an ample amount of opportunities to skid out real quietly and never see of her again. He didn’t however, something about this woman had him for some obscure reason stay where he was and received some love maybe he was never shown before. When he got done with dinner and got money for his new shoes, he turned around and didn’t know how to speak the words thank you, it came out awkwardly, but that’s all it takes to show that he learned a valuable lesson to hold onto with dear life.
When learning it’s best to listen to the lessons, and actually live the lessons. Not only is it fair to the coach, teacher, or parent who wants to teach you new things, it’s also a duty to yourself to be grateful for what has been laid in front of it, take advantage of what lies ahead, and don’t forget to save what you have learned in the past.