Headmaster’s Thoughts – July 2008

Dear Head of Amazon Books:

I am a great admirer of your company. Perhaps you can help our students. You see, they are at risk of developing back problems, and I think your organization can actively prevent this.

This is what is happening. Textbooks are getting fatter and fatter. In their zeal to cover all the possible curricula in every State of our Union (plus Puerto Rico), the textbook companies have produced monster books weighing and costing too much. Now, I understand you are in the book-selling business and so probably an appeal to lower the price of the books (even if you could) would not be in your interests, but your wonderful new reading machine, the Kindle, could certainly help in lowering (or even eliminating) the weight. If you could sell the downloading of textbooks onto this clever new machine, students could carry one small device instead of a backpack that strains their backs.

Just a thought.

Sincerely,

Ronald P. Stewart
Headmaster, York Prep

Dear Head of Red Bull Drink Company:

Our students do not get enough sleep. In fact, every national study shows that the adolescents of this country do not get the nine or ten hours of nightly sleep they need. I hate to tell you this, but your product is aggravating the situation. Students stay up late and get energy by drinking your caffeine loaded drink. In effect, your product enables them to be sleep deprived.

I dream that you would sell your caffeine drinks only to those over eighteen, in a similar way to how cigarettes are sold. I know this is asking a lot, but the rest of us, educators and parents, would be really grateful.

Just a thought.

Sincerely,

Ronald P. Stewart
Headmaster, York Prep

Dear Head of DuPont Industries:

Could you invent a device to help those of us who like coffee but take it decaffeinated after about 6.00 p.m. so that it does not interfere with our sleep?

This is what happens to us old folks. We go to a restaurant and ask for decaffeinated coffee. The waiter or waitress brings us a cup and pours out the delicious beverage. The problem is that only later do we realize (and I mean later) that the coffee was probably not decaffeinated. We learn this the hard way for the most obvious reason that we cannot sleep. And there is just no way to tell whether the coffee that we got served was with or without caffeine.

So this is where your great company comes in. Could your clever scientists develop a device—maybe like a strip of litmus paper or a little thermometer—that we old folks could dip into the coffee to see how much caffeine there really was? I promise you we would buy the pack of strips or thermometers. You would win, we would sleep!

Just a thought.

Sincerely,

Ronald P. Stewart
Headmaster, York Prep

E-mail: rstewart@yorkprep.org 

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