Between the ages of 11 and 14, my son Carlton had some serious struggles with maintaining any semblance of academic excellence. He could get good grades on a test here, a quiz there, but ultimately, his report cards would have all Cs and Ds on them. I tried various forms of motivation, but none of them worked. But of course my son is now at that age, when material things--more importantly having the money to purchase them--are the one of the most important aspects of his life. So when I found this out, I was able to coax academic excellence out of his lazy ass, by promising sums of money. In fairness to Carlton, I think he's also motivated by the fact that his friends have begun talking about college and he does not want to get left behind. Anyway, he's gotten all As and Bs for two consecutive semester (the second semester of 9th grade and the first semester of 10th), and as a result I initally offered him cash, and then he explained that he wanted Jordans (Concord 11s to be exact).
Now when I was under 18, my dad refused to pay that much money for shoes, and to this day I have never owned a pair of Jordans. Even when I was working and could afford a pair, I just found it difficult to justify that kind of money for shoes I will wear on Friday and Saturday only. Dress shoes are worth spending $100-$300 for, because I will get plenty of mileage out of them. I'm not crazy about Carlton getting Jordans with the little bit of money he earned last semester, and I did my best to tell him how asinine it was to make that purchase, but he stood his ground. He'll learn his lesson the hard way. Before we got off the phone, I told him to send me the shoe he wanted, and the size he wore via email. This is how the email exchange went down:
Carlton: Concord 11
Me: Carlton I have no problem getting you the shoe, because as I said before, you earned this money. But I asked for the name of the shoe and the size. The least you could do is put them both in a complete sentence, instead of you sending me two words, because I don't know if the shoe is called Concord 11, or if it's just called Concord and your size is 11, so please clarify for me.
Carlton: Concord 11 size 10
Me: That's still not a sentence, stop being lazy.
Carlton: The shoes are called the concord 11, and I wear a size 10.
Me: Thank you, I'll order them today
For some reason I feel the need to call my dad and apologize for all the headaches I caused as a teenager.