Words from a Father

Husband of One, Father of Four

Tag: school

483. Keep Learning

Daughter, get as much education as you can. If anything ever happens to your husband, life will be up to you. Education is not your way out, it is your way forward.

Son, get as much education as you can. It is your job to provide the most security possible for your family. It is also your responsibility to encourage your wife to continue her education in case anything happens to you.

No excuses: Take care of her as well as you can while you are here; make sure she can take care of herself if you are gone.

This is modern-day chivalry. This is one way to honor your family.

399. Dictionary

Dictionaries are imperative. There’s a difference between bodacious, salacious, and pugnacious.

398. Suggested Reading: Beowulf

Beowulf, the epic poem. Distant lands, grand warriors, mythical beasts, battles aplenty.

And I wrote a rap about it for a class project in seventh grade. And we acted it out on video. And I still have a copy.

384. Quotes: Mark Twain on Education

“I’ve never let my school interfere with my education.”

—Mark Twain

370. Punctuate for Intended Meaning

There are right and wrong ways to punctuate your writing.

Once you master those rules, move to the next level. Phrase and punctuate so readers grasp your intended meaning. This is the beginning of developing your personal writing style.

341. Quotes: Arthur Quiller-Couch on Written Style

“For — believe me, Gentlemen — so far as Handel stands above Chopin, as Velasquez above Greuze, even so far stand the great masculine objective writers above all who appeal to you by parade of personality or private sentiment.

Mention of these great masculine ‘objective’ writers brings me to my last word: which is, ‘Steep yourselves in them: habitually bring all to the test of them: for while you cannot escape the fate of all style, which is to be personal, the more of catholic manhood you inherit from those great loins the more you will assuredly beget.’

This then is Style. As technically manifested in Literature it is the power to touch with ease, grace, precision, any note in the gamut of human thought or emotion.

But essentially it resembles good manners. It comes of endeavouring to understand others, of thinking for them rather than for yourself — of thinking, that is, with the heart as well as the head. It gives rather than receives; it is nobly careless of thanks or applause, not being fed by these but rather sustained and continually refreshed by an inward loyalty to the best. Yet, like ‘character’ it has its altar within; to that retires for counsel, from that fetches its illumination, to ray outwards. Cultivate, Gentlemen, that habit of withdrawing to be advised by the best. So, says Fénelon, ‘you will find yourself infinitely quieter, your words will be fewer and more effectual; and while you make less ado, what you do will be more profitable.’”

—“On the Art of Writing,” Chapter 12: Lectures Delivered in the University of Cambridge, 1913–1914, by Sir Arthur Quiller-Couch (1863–1944), published in 1916 by Cambridge University Press

267. Choose Essay

If you have a choice between multiple choice or writing an essay, pick the essay. It is a different kind of work to formulate your thoughts into a strong, full-spectrum argument, but there’s more room to draw on resources to justify your position.

266. Big Decisions

There are no small decisions after high school.

264. Learn

Inhabit the nobility of being alive. Always be learning.

222. Portfolio

How to build a portfolio:

  • When starting out, do some work for free to get experience.
  • Record important information, such as the dates of the job, parties involved, and your hours worked.
  • List the project’s goals, show before and afters, and list your accomplishments during the project.
  • Get recommendations from those you worked with.

Keep all this on file, and branch into two versions: one that has every detail of every project and another with just the summary and your accomplishments.

When applying for a position, you will need to tailor your portfolio to the job description. It’s worth it.

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