Personal Growth

Life’s Not Fair





Mr. Banker was by far the most unreasonable teacher at Blue Valley Middle School.  A teacher should create a fair and predictable environment, but a conversation with Mr. Banker might go like this:

Student:  “Mr. Banker, I think this test question should have been marked correct.  Liz wrote the same answer, and she got it right.”

Mr. Banker:  “Really?  Let me see.  Nope, actually Liz is wrong too.  You’re both wrong.  But I already entered the grades, so she gets to keep the point.”

Student:  “What?? That’s not fair!”

Mr. Banker:  “On THAT you’re right.  Life’s not fair.  Now please take a seat.”

He wasn’t very clever either.  For each test, he allowed a handwritten notecard.  So a few hours of intense labor with a perfectly sharpened pencil made it possible to research and transcribe in great detail every possible test item!

When in life do we achieve success from simply working hard, preparing well and remembering to bring the notecard?

It got worse.

While most teachers required calm, reasonable speeches for student body president, Mr. Banker allowed (even encouraged) D.J. Whetter to juggle three balls in the air during his entire presentation.  D.J. said some nonsense about juggling many priorities (a cute reference to the flying objects), and ended the speech with a dramatic catch followed by a pointing finger at the crowd, yelling “Whetter is Better.”

When in real life does creativity, practice and showmanship get anyone anywhere?

What does such foolishness teach students about life?

A lot, actually.

Because life really isn’t fair.  And there isn’t some limited number of points available to make the grade.  In life, we get to make our own assignments, as many as we want.  And as long as we serve enough people, we’re in for high marks.

Come to think of it, nobody read the notecards during the test.  After all that research and useless repetition, we knew the material by heart.



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