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English and Math

Son, if there are only two subjects that you have to be really good at, make it English and Math.

Do well in English because it is the universal language and a huge chunk of the knowledge acquired by mankind over the years is communicated through it. English is one of the basic building blocks of an individual’s stock of knowledge. Do well in it and you will have an easier time understanding the world. Of course, don’t forget your native language since this is the medium through which our people’s culture is transmitted. Also, keep in mind that you might also need to learn other languages (people say Mandarin will be the new English in a few years).

Do well in Math because it lets you practice, and thus improve, your analytical skills. Math also helps you think logically (logic is also a prerequisite to one’s analytical skills). Even more important is that Math (and its branches) is actually mankind’s attempt to model the world around him. We’ve been working for so many years to build and refine it and while it’s still not yet a complete and perfect representation of reality (we’ve probably only covered the tip of the iceberg), Math has certainly come a long way. Do well in it and you will have an easier time understanding the world.

To be honest, and this is going a bit off-topic, I dream of you choosing a career in one of the fields of engineering or science (physics, perhaps?). Don’t let that pressure you, though. I’m just being a father, and fathers are allowed to dream like that sometimes. I want to tell you now that whatever field you choose in life, your mother and I will be there for you. But at least make sure it’s honest and decent work…and that you do well in English and Math.

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