Monday, January 10, 2011


Written by Rebecca Chhay
c/o 2012
Every day in life, we’re presented with choices. Right now you have the choice of continuing to read this blog post, or moving onto something else. This morning, you had a choice of whether or not to press the snooze button or to wake up. Life is a reflection of choices.
Some of these choices are not in our hands. For example, no one is able to choose whether or not he or she is born.  After that, however, there are a lot of things in our control. One topic that is related to choices has already been discussed on this blog: making a difference.
Generally, people take this to mean a positive difference. You can make a difference by doing the simplest things; for example, letting the bus driver know that there’s someone running to catch the bus. You can also make a difference by not doing anything. The bus will drive away; you’ll likely never see the person who was running to catch the bus again.
In this situation, there is a choice. The choice is whether or not you let the bus driver know to wait another 30 or so seconds. There is no choice as to whether or not you made a difference. In this situation, however, the difference is small and it can be counted in minutes. If you chose not to let the bus driver know to wait the extra 30 seconds, the person who was running to catch the bus will wait a little. No harm done; but what if this weren’t a matter of minutes?  
In my seventh grade year at Roosevelt, I went to school one day and it appeared as if a lot of my teachers had colds and had decided to cluster around the entrance to the library to share tissues. During first period, we learned that our Vice Principal Tracee Parsons had gotten into a car accident after leaving school and died almost instantly. She had been making calls to the parents concerning the behavior of their children before leaving school. If one less person had acted out in class, if she had one less phone call to make, if she had gotten out five minutes earlier… I don’t know. I don’t know what would have happened.
I don’t know which students Ms. Parsons called, and even if I did, I wouldn’t blame them. How could they have known that the difference wouldn’t be measured in minutes? They didn’t know what the stakes were. Do you ever know what the stakes are?
All you can do is make a choice. You will always make a difference.


  1. This day's post touches on an issue that I believe is both very important and highly undervalued. Have you ever noticed how happy, excited, or uplifted you feel when someone you know and like drops a really friendly comment on Facebook, email, text, voice mail or in person? Perhaps it's just me, but coming home to a surprise message on facebook or email from an old, or even constant friend just letting me know that they appreciate me and were thinking about me and wondering how I'm doing. Rebecca is right. Every day we are faced with choices. We can never be sure how far the effects of those choices can go, or how many people will be effected by them, but we can be completely sure that there are effects. And who knows what a small friendly message or note will do to someones day. Just something to think about as we go about making our choices.

  2. While reading this blog it just made me syop and think and look at everything in a different perspective, we all like to think that the little things we do don't make difference, but the truth is it does. I believe that things we do we might not notice them then but we will eventually sometimes things we do without thinking about them are realizing how much of an effect they might have on others. I think as people we like to believe the things we do don't have an effect on people as long as it's a good one. i think we should take the time and think before we act. "if I do this instead of that would it reaaly make a difference?" Think before we act.

  3. A choice... one of the hardest things to make. No you don't make it with your hands or with clay, its a decision that comes from within. Before any actions are ever done, it would be helpful to think "why am I doing this? Who is it going to benifit?". Like Strebler tells us, your choice leads to your consequences. So if you go out there and insult a class mate, even jokingly, that may be the last thing you or anyone else had ever said to him/her. Your choices are what make a difference in your actions. So before you let the busdriver go, think about the person trying to catch the bus.

  4. This post reminds me a lot of the song/ phrase "Live like You're dying". Which technically we are dying a little each and everyday, but I think it is more along lines of to live life to the fullest. Don't do something you'll regret later. A common example would be don't get into a fight with your parents because then when they drive off in a huff and are angry at you, they might get into a car accident and die. (not trying to be a pessimist here)
    One will make seemingly random/insignificant choices that will effect them later. like wearing shorts and a tshirt the day you have a big presentation our forgot about. I think that sometimes one just needs to slow down and look at all the choices we make everyday and their consequences

  5. I agree with Rebecca's blog about choices and I definently think about choices in the same way. For example the choices that we make in school right now, like doing a project or not doing it can have an affect on the grade that we get in that class, which can lead us to either passing or failing that class. In life I think that we all want to make the "right" choices, although at times there are choices/decisions that you will have to make and it may be really tought but you have to do it. Sometimes picking the wrong choice is the right thing to do, but always make choices on what you believe in and not because what someone else thinks.

  6. The beginning of the post really made me put everything in perspective. I had read the post a few days ago, didn't have time to respond, but it made me analyze little things I did each day that could have a bigger affect on someone else. About every year, I make new years resolutions that are superficial and completely meaningless to everyone except myself. This year my resolution is to make impacts on other's lives. It doesn't matter how small my impact is, but I just want to have a positive affect on other's lives. Simple things as small as someone holding the door for me can put me in a better mood, and i'd love to have that affect on people.

  7. This post has a very big affect on me. Made me change my perspective to a new one. In the past few minutes of reading this post, I'm playing back all the choices I could've made in my head. Even though some don't have such a big affect such as this one, it still makes an impact in my life. I feel as now when I'm given a choice, I will always do the best one for me and others.

  8. I remeber this day, i was in the 8th grade. Mrs. Parson was a nice lady.I remember how she was strict at times but she was a nice person. Before she passed away i was able to talk to her, not a long conversation just a "hello, how are you" and went on with my class. I completely changed my perspective on her, just with these few words. As i grew older i realised how it was her job to keep everything moving and sometimes she had to be strict. At school they organised a service for her, we placed ribons a all over the front fence of he school.After this incident i started looking at peple in a diffrent perspective, not on how their job requires them to be, but as the person that they are. Everyone has good and bad days and we need o learn to appreciate eople no matter what.

  9. Taking the initiative to make a difference is not always easy, but when it is done it is one of the most interesting thing in the world. For one you feel great for being the person who decide to help, and the person that you helped feels grateful. The people that observed you help someone would then might decide to do something like this later on in the day. Thus causing a positive chain reaction, and that is what making a small difference is all about.

    Miguel Preciado