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a true story for other numbskulls "Our tests indicate Harold is just not college material.
It will be frustrating and prove ultimately unproductive to fight his just average grades and test scores.
He should be a plumber or maybe work in a print shop.
" My mom took this rejection very personally.
I guess she expected the guidance counselor to say Harvard was courting me, and her son would be a future occupant of the White House.
She told my grandmother the catastrophic news and added, The school teacher (guidance counselor) was blind in one eye, and had B.
It is a gift I have to observe such things.
Granma responded, her Harold would be a budding genius with the right help.
She added, Look into the eyes.
Albert Einstein is hiding in there.
I swear he will be a great lawyer.
It is written in his eyes.
You do not discard a person at 13-years-old.
It is the teacher who is doomed to a small role in life.
My father, on the other hand, instinctively believed the school folks: He should come to work with me at the factory.
School-schmool, I will teach him the candy business and he always make a good living.
People love chocolate and always will.
Give him to me.
He had never been an advocate of higher education; he believed in being your own boss, finding your niche, and working long and hard to exploit your competitive edge.
He was the richest in his extended family, so you best listen.
He appreciated the apprentice system: Good enough for George Washington who had a city named after him near Philadelphia.
And what about Ben Franklin, the printer, who has $1000 bills with his picture decorating it? Stop spoiling him with this college talk.
Let him invent a new Hershey Bar like George Eastman, if he is so smart.
His place is at the factory learning the family business from me.
I could have told him Eastman invented the Kodak not the candy bar.
He would have just said, his camera was as sweet as any milk chocolate.
And if I corrected him that Benny was on the $100, he would say, A hundred, a thousand, Money-is-Money.
My mother turned red as a beet.
Her ears were ringing with maternal rage.
Imagine starting up with a lioness protecting her cubs.
For openers, she got me a home tutor three days weekly in math and science.
Not enough, she made me take one preparatory course in advanced reading and another in memory improvement.
She found Dale Carnegie for public speaking in the Yellow Pages.
They turned her down flat because I was not 18, their minimum starting age.
Years from now they will regret it, when my Harold is a big lawyer and then Governor of New York, like Herbert Lehman.
That Carnegie secretary, I could swear she has Body Odor; even on the phone my nose can tell.
It is a gift from upstairs you know.
She never asked what I wanted, knowing her darling son was chronically lazy and undisciplined.
Only in America did a person ask for an opinion from a 13-year-old snot-nose.
Would you want an opinion from someone who dreams of playing with a torn ball and hitting it with a short rolling pin all day long? A curse on Columbus; still I love this America of ours.
Time Marches on I graduated in the 90 percentile (rhymes with Gentile), first from Long Island University, next New York Law School.
Passed the Bar exam on the first crack.
What does it all prove? How do you stop a charging bull elephant? Sure, you take away his credit card, but there is nothing that stops a charging mother defending her own little numbskull.
She never said it, but Mom never wanted to be confused with the facts, as others saw them.
She would say, A mother always knows her own.
She got a different sight.
Go know how she nailed it.
See ya, copyright 2007 H.
Bernard Wechsler http://www.