I remember myself at 16 and I was a bonehead. Even as a teacher wanna-be, I was late, lazy and lack-luster in all things, musical and otherwise. I was slacker personified.
Yes, it's easy to question the work ethic of young people. In fact, it's as old as time itself as Socrates lamented over the same thing. And in that way, and that way alone, Socrates and I are similar.
Just yesterday, for the bazzillionth time, I had to remind my lazy son to practice his trombone and piano. He sharply responded that he had already practiced five days this week and that was enough. Just as I was about ready to lay the hammer down, he screamed, “When was the last time YOU practiced?” I told him that I play every single day. He said, “Playing Billy Joel is NOT practicing! When was the last time you PRACTICED?”
Ummm… Let’s just say it’s been awhile. A VERY long while.
It turned out that I was criticizing him for, well… Being like me: a lazy undisciplined pianist.
So, yesterday I sat down to work on the same piano excerpt he was was working on. As I painfully blundered my way through the excerpt I was reminded that sometimes I am better at talking the talk than walking the walk.
I guess that’s why I have the job I have and he has the job he does. He does all the walking and I do all the talking.
Being a student isn't the the most difficult thing in the world, but it's not the easiest either. Students deserve credit when they achieve and guidance when they fall short. Through it all, let's remember that in good times and in bad, we're in it together!
You don't have to be Socrates to find the flaws in our youth. But, you don't have to be a genius to find the good in them either.
Have a great week.
p.s The picture above is my son and his piano teacher at their lesson last night. Miss Megan (as we call her) is a saint as she always sees the good in my son. That is why she is his piano teacher and I am not. Well, that and the fact that I am a terrible piano player.