# Wavering Diligence

December 14, 2009

I can’t honestly say I’m the most diligent person that I know, because as far as I’m aware, pushing your homework off till the very last second in attempts to keep that A for the quarter is rather paradoxical. I usually leave my AP Calculus BC homework for lunch, AP Physics homework for before class starts, and Spanish whenever I have a minutes break between my classes. Yes, I’m quite aware this is a bad habit, and yes, I’m being quite diligent in the attempts to reverse this.

It’d be little surprise if you didn’t believe me, seeing as how I just gave you a multitude of examples of how much of a slacker I am, but let me show you a bit of the opposite side.

Back in 7th grade, my friend and I decided to go down into my basement to play some ping pong, as it seemed like a rather fun sport to learn. I knew the basics: watch ball, hit ball, make ball go over. Simple enough, right? By the 8th grade, we thought we were pros, racking up volleys over 20, playing what we considered to be a fast pace at the time, and getting in some pretty cool luck shots. I suppose we did improve out of repetition, from 7th to 8th. But when we finally opened our eyes to the ping pong world around us, things snapped into perspective, and we kind of felt like idiots.

By the beginning of 9th grade, we decided to actually try to get better, and not just play for fun. That’s not to say we didn’t have fun while we trained, but in this case, we actually had a purpose for playing other than kill some time. For about three hours a day, from when school let out until dinner time, we’d play competitively without score. It’s not about how many points you score, but the way you score those points. The shots we once made by sheer luck and other higher forces possibly, were now skill shots, attacks and defenses we could do by our choosing.

But our focus and love for the game didn’t seem to be quenched by the mere three hours a day. Friday nights entailed a lengthy duration, up to ten hours of play until our legs and arms were numb and sleep would get us before we could make it up the stairs.

I’m open to any challengers out there, who wish to verse either myself or my friend, or the both of us, in a friendly game of ping pong. I’m not being arrogant here, but I really want to play other good people aside from my friend. It may have taken us countless hours to achieve our current skill level, but that’s exactly what we pride ourselves on. Betterment by diligence is a rewarding experience, and whether we win or lose, it’s about the improvement we gain from playing.

To those who know me, I’ve mentioned a little bit about my passion for reading and writing. I’m not sure where the fine line between liking to read, and a burning passion to read lies, but I’m pretty sure I’m on the passionate side, seeing as I’ve read for twelve hours straight a few times.

In all respects, I’m not too fast of a reader, but with a good reason for not skimming those English books we are forced to read in class. I look to them as guidance for writing, seeing as how if our teacher makes us read it, there must be some merit behind it. Analyzing line after line is a meticulous task, and sometimes even tedious when the book puts you to sleep. But despite the suffering, it’s worth it in the end. The knowledge to craft words like those of the greatest authors is unexplainably powerful.

I make it a point to write some form of a journal entry on whatever I’m thinking of, or what has happened that day as a way to practice my writing daily. Time is never an issue, be it after I finish essays at one in the morning or right when I get home. Write write write.

Making it a point to read every night is another key factor in my quest to become a better writer. On those precious nights my teacher doesn’t throw reading assignments at me, I read my own list of books for a minimum of thirty minutes a night. However, time is a considerable factor here as, what would I gain from reading when my brain is already turned off?

Trips to the libraries is a routinely schedule. Yes, that’s the plural form of library, as one library doesn’t cut it. Sometimes one library has a book another doesn’t, or I’m about to overdue my twice renewed books from one library and I’m in the middle of reading it. Whatever’s the case, my file box is stuffed with several books from several different libraries. Keeping track of the number of books, their due dates, and their libraries requires more diligence than most tasks in itself!

As it should be clear now, diligence isn’t really lacking from me as a whole per se, but it’s seriously lacking in the homework department. Yet, I can’t help but notice the speed and effort I put into writing essays like this… Is my diligence finally crossing over? I sure hope so… That calculus homework isn’t going to do itself you know…

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