Thursday, April 1, 2010

College Advice

I have been to college, and as such I have some advice for the kids out there.

Is it me, or are high schools going overboard with getting their students into college?  It seems that more and more students are applying to colleges, and what is more, they want to go!  I just don’t understand what the deal is with all these kids trying to get more education.  Sure college can give you a leg up in many areas, but what about the forgotten trades?  I think that in this economy students are doing themselves a great disservice by restricting themselves to college after they graduate from high school. The list of jobs that await high school grads these days should be expanded. Many, including President Obama, say college is the key.

I say, nonsense.  The truth is that many great careers can be started right away, without attending college.  For example, the carnival and amusement park industry is always looking for people with a keen mind and a strong back.  A top notch carny can make up to $25,000 a year, and that includes benefits.  You may start out cleaning up after the goat boy, rabbit girl or sword swallower, but advancement is possible.  

Darryl “Jawbone” Jenks, one of the industry’s biggest tycoons, started out as a mop boy on The Nausiator, but because of his work ethic, it wasn’t long before he became the Tilt-a-Whirl operator. After that, he hit the mother load.  When three time Carny-of-the-Year Award winner Red Noonan retired, Darryl took his post as the “guess my weight” guy.  It may sound far fetched, but there are just as many future Darryl Jenks out there as there are lawyers and doctors.  It makes me sad that there is this clear bias against not going to college.  There is nothing to be ashamed of if a student wishes to pursue a career as a carny, street performer, cobbler, hand model or dog groomer.  The stigma against these trades must come to an end, because there is nothing that you can get in an Ivy League college that you can’t get under a tent at the fairgrounds. 

 I was lucky to meet Darryl Jenks on one occasion, and I must say that he was a man of great moral fiber who, despite his lack of book learning, lived an exciting and deeply fulfilling life.  Reject the impulse to go to college and choose a more exciting path. 

P.S. This is an April Fool. Duh.

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