Save Yourself from Future Trouble: Prepare for Academic Storms While You Can See Clearly

Like many of you, I am on vacation. Ideally, days are full of fun and frivolity. Nights are restful, or, if you’re a night owl, full of even MORE fun and frivolity. Frankly, I think we deserve it. So it was with some peevishness that I looked up at the roof of the lovely little cabin my family visits in the middle of nowhere and noticed… missing shingles.

Now you may be thinking, “who notices these things?”  For good or for bad, I do. “Gosh, I should probably replace those” was followed by “But, yeah, it’s been insanely dry. What’s the rush?”  Allow me to share that replacing shingles is a TOTAL pain. You are working on a pitched roof. In the sun. All the tools you need tend to slide off of the roof. Oh, and the roofing nails you need to remove or to hammer in go under the shingles that lie on top of them. Say, what?

Yeah, it’s a pain.

The only thing that’s perhaps a bigger pain than replacing the shingles that protect roofs is replacing the roof decking that supports those shingles. You do NOT want to have to replace rotted decking in a roof. When you replace rotted sheathing, you get to remove ALL of the shingles, then the plywood; then, measure, cut, and hammer in new plywood, and THEN replace those infernal shingles.

Yeah. A bigger pain.

So, to avoid the bigger pain, I addressed the shingles. Were it not the height of summer with every handyman in the area already booked, or were I not so stubbornly insistent on doing things myself, this problem could have been someone else’s. As it was, I spent the better part of my morning replacing shingles.

You are starting freshman year in a month. Sorry to deliver unwelcome news! Chances are, you may be missing a few shingles here and there. Maybe your writing could use some attention. Math remediation from the end of 8th grade when you kind of checked out? Organizational skills, well, not so organized? Yes, you’ve gotten through or gotten by. Yes, there are others you can lean on, but I’m probably not the first to let you know the rains of high school will likely be heavier than they were in middle school. The time to patch up your roof is not during the middle of a storm. Keep an eye on things, and make a plan to weather the storms while the sun is still shining.