Howard in a Chicken Suit
I was at a college night describing to people who walked up to my table in the cafeteria that I would be back at Harrison High School in two weeks giving a 1 hour presentation on the college aid system and how it works. How they determine how much and what kind of aid you will received. I said that last sentence about 100 times. The goal is I speak in two weeks to about 50 people, then the parents come see me for a more in-depth meeting. I show them some things they didn't know and every so often a couple ask me to become their advisor - IRAs, insurance, whatever. You don't get rich doing this, but I've built up a decent practice from it over the last 5 years. I've helped alot of people who were terrified of the specter to college costs. I feel good about this.
While doing this type of thing though I sort of feel like the guy in the chicken suit outside a Kenny Rogers Roasters trying to get people to come in. You're an idiot, people are trying to ignore you or at least not make eye contact. But I'm here - CLUCK! CLUCK!
I've met some nice people - they are mostly nice. About 95% seem like good solid people. Seeing the kids and the parents together has taught me one thing - if your kid kind of looks like a dumbass slacker who can barely function in the non-competitive world of a rural high school much less the big bad world at large, more than likely you look about the same - just 25 years or so older and 40 lbs. fatter. If the parent looks ok, so does the kid - for the most part and in their own way. I sometimes wonder why parents let their kids out of the house looking like hell and then I see, oh, the parents look like hell. What does their house look like? Their finances?
If Woody Allen said that 75% of success is showing up, another 20% is the following: take a shave, brush your hair, wash your face, stand up straight and speak clearly when spoken to. I shouldn't have to say this but you're 45 now and your kids are watching and learning from you.
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