Advice To Young Readers

On two occasions in the past couple of days, I did something I swore as a youngster I’d never do. I sat and “visited.” My parents would take us visiting sometimes. Unless the people had children my age, I was bored out of my skull with visiting. I mean, all they did was sit around and talk. And what they talked about didn’t even make any sense. There was mud to splash around in outside, firecrackers to light, trees to climb, and we were stuck inside a boring livingroom listening to grownups talk nonsense for what seemed like hours.

Well my young friends, I’m here to tell you visiting isn’t quite so bad when you get a little older. (Some) adults have led interesting lives, and are willing to share their stories with willing listeners, Some are equally interested in the things you’ve done too. By listening and participating, you can gravitate towards the things you want to do, and avoid the pitfalls that can be so prevalent.

If you are a young reader, and you are still reading, let me offer you an important observation. Friendship is one of your most important possessions. Find yourself people that are interesting, and that are interested in you, and put some effort into that relationship. Do it as often as you can. As the decades pile up, the handful of friends that you grow closer to will ripen in their relationship with you. A good friendship gets better with time. Don’t let misunderstandings trip you up either. Believe in the intrinsic good of your friends. They have bad days, and sometimes say and do things that seem not to ring true. You are almost always best off giving the benefit of the doubt. But don’t be a chump either. If there isn’t a match there, don’t sweat it… there are lots of potential friends out there.

And when the time comes… when climbing trees and shooting off firecrackers loses the charm it once had, then sit with your friends with a cup of coffee. Listen to their stories and share some of yours. Only leave your kids at home, or make sure they have some kids to play with while you are visiting.

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