Life All Downhill for Fifth-Grade Reading Champ

NOT WHERE SHE EXPECTED TO BE, THAT’S FOR SURE ‒ From her room in the long-abandoned Baits I, total personal failure and LSA sophomore Carly Huffman reported Tuesday morning that her life had never before seemed like “such a complete and utter waste of time.” This realization marks the nadir of quite a fall for Huffman, who had a promising start in elementary school as a four-time line leader and the 5th-grade reading champion in March 2004.

“I remember they took my picture and put it on the wall in the big hallway. I think I got a certificate. I remember thinking it would always be like this, that this would be just the first of many well-deserved accolades,” said Huffman, who, as a precocious 10-year-old, was unaware of how little promise her life truly held. “I remember thinking, ‘Next stop, valedictorian, then onto Princeton and hopefully the White House!’ Instead, the only concentrations that accepted me were Earth Sciences and Screen Arts. Not even Screen Arts and Cultures, just Screen Arts.”

The path to prosperity is proving harder than Huffman thought. Besides her extremely mediocre GPA, she also regularly gets rejected by boys whom she considers herself better-looking than, and recently lost to LSA sophomore Trisha Warner in the election for treasurer of the Michigan Argentine Tango Club. For her part, though, Huffman says she has finally come to grips with the harsh realities of life.

“I think our society is too quick to praise children these days,” lamented Huffman, who after her initial turn as reading champ has gone 12 straight years without earning a single award. She added, “I think over-rewarding gives kids an unrealistic expectation about what life is like in the real world. I mean, my little brother got a trophy yesterday for watching his middle-school team lose a volleyball game. Something clearly is wrong when kids’ delicate senses of self-worth are dangerously over-inflated from being given trophies for half-hearted cheering and certificates of participation.”

Huffman reports that she does not know what she is going to do with the shambles that has become her life. She did admit, however, that she was very excited about an upcoming interview for a summer position with Ulrich’s because she thinks “selling and renting new and gently-used textbooks to students is a field I can definitely see myself excelling in.”

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